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Zane Middle School sundial rectangle benches
These benches were designed for Zane Middle School in order to make the front of the school more welcoming and give students a place to sit to wait for their parents to pick them up. Previously, the desolate squares near the parking lot were full of wood chips being tracked all over campus and creating a mess. Our team, Sunset Society, designed these benches with reused materials in order to promote sustainability and create a fun look that would entice students to use the seating.
Catherine Zane Middle School in Eureka, CA is home to a diverse group of students whom follow a rigorous curriculum focused on STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math). In an effort to promote STEAM education, the Environmental Resource Engineering department at Humboldt State University has been granted the opportunity to take on design projects to improve the school. A previous team built a human sundial on the foreground of the school, however the landscaping has since had some issues and an employee at the school, Trevor Hammons, is interested in improving and beautifying the sundial square area.
Problem statement and criteria
The front of Zane Middle School lacked an area for students to congregate.
|Safety||10||Usable my middle school students without risking injury.|
|Durability||8||Must be sturdy enough for prolonged use and be weather resistant.|
|Cost||5||Should cost under $150 per bench.|
|Aesthetics||9||Must be visibly appealing.|
|Mobility||7||Should help direct smooth flow through the sundial rectangle area.|
|Educational Value||2||Should incite student learning about reused materials.|
Description of final project
The final Sundial Square Beautification landscaping includes pathways made with a mold surrounding a PVC bench. There is one PVC bench in each square next to the piece of sidewalk with the sundial engraved on it. Each bench is made with a wooden frame that has a decorative PVC pipe skirt surrounding each edge. The pathways are strategically placed to prevent the ground from being worn in the areas where children will access the benches. The ground is also shaped in a way to prevent puddles from forming in the rectangles of ground.
Include a how to use and maintain section. See the how to template below.
|Quantity||Material||Source||Cost ($)||Total ($)|
|1||Flat Wall Brush||Hensels Ace Hardware||4.99||4.99|
|1||Oil Varnish||Hensels Ace Hardware||7.99||7.99|
|1||2"x4"x8'||Hensels Ace Hardware||22.96||22.96|
|1||Nuts and Bolts||Hensels Ace Hardware||3.78||3.78|
|1||5' of 2" PVC||Hensels Ace Hardware||5.95||5.95|
|1||Street Signs||Arcata Scarp & Salvage||20.00||20.00|
|1||Feeling Groovy Stepping Stones||Hensels Ace Hardware||Donated||Donated|
|2||Quickcrete (50lbs)||Hensels Ace Hardware||Donated||Donated|
|1||Potting Soil||Hensels Ace Hardware||Donated||Donated|
|1||Stepping Stone Mold||Hensels Ace Hardware||Donated||Donated|
|8||20ft of 2 inch PVC||Keenan Supply||Donated||Donated|
How to build
|Simplified bench construction|
|Step 1 : Accurately measure out PVC for skirt.|
|Step 2 : Cut the PVC|
|Step 3 : Assemble skirt|
|Step 4 : Attach legs to PVC skirt|
|Step 5 : Attach legs to foundation|
|Step 6 : Screw decking material to top|
The benches and pathways will need occasional maintenance if dirt and or wood chips get blown around on the side walk.
This is when to maintain what:
- Sweep off the pathways
- Rinse the bench tops and PVC
- Replace any bolts that may have come loose over the year
- Every 10 years
- Replace wood if needed
- Replace any cracking PVC
Suggestions for future changes
We did not have sufficient project time to pour concrete for the durable pathways that we originally intended. A future improvement on the Sundial Rectangle benches would be clear pathways to direct traffic flow around the benches and possibly some plants or shrubs for landscaping.
See Help:Footnotes for more.