We found ourselves wandering through the Material Connexion
Library in New York, happy like kids in a candy store. The huge physical library stores over 4.000 materials, with something to inspire any designer or architect. Of course what we were really impressed by was the now open Cradle to Cradle material section that Material Connexion set up in collaboration with MBDC
last year. These first C2C material libraries opened in January this year in New York City, Milan, Cologne and Bangkok, and can also be consulted online
, once you register. Material Connexion believes the C2C-certified materials are an important addition to other sustainable materials in the library. Any newly certified materials will automatically be added to the library, due to the high standard of environmental responsibility MBDC applies in their certification system, explains Material Connexion.When asked why the library chose Cradle to Cradle as a certification to work with, Material Connexion responded that it is the most comprehensive labelling system and the only one that fully deals with the end of life of the products. Furthermore they told us that more and more designers and architects who come for a material consultation, now first ask about whether the material is eco-friendly, rather than whether it is the cheapest.
Part of the C2C materials is a timber that has undergone a mineralization process, keeping it free of heavy metals while protecting it against termites, mould and mildew. There is also a spray-on pipe coating rated ‘gold’ and we were able to feel the PVC-free carpet backing EcoWorx, developed by Shaw Carpet. You can also find compostable environmentally sound upholstery fabrics like Climatex, the use of which is up to the designer as you can see here. Versawall, rigid foamed panels made from 100% polyurethane (for light building construction), also made it into the Cradle to Cradle section alongside Terraskin, a packaging material inspired by egg shell to reduce the use of material.
For more information, see the video and read about the services, such as workshops, material assessment and product development, in our previous post. You can visit Material Connexion Library in NYC (127 West 25th Street, by appointment: 212-842-2050), Milan, Cologne, Bangkok and online of course. The annual registration fee is $200. ::Material Connexion