The Elevator B sculpture in Buffalo, New York, also provides a home for bees and aims to be part of an educational scheme to teach people about the importance of the ecosystem.
We’ve seen how public art can provide an aesthetic addition to an area whilst also providing eco benefits, with pieces such as Nissan’s vertical gardens in Mexico. This time, the Elevator B sculpture in Buffalo, New York, is also a working beehive. Building manufacturer Rigidized Metals originally bought the land, known as Silo City, with the idea of creating an industrial estate there, but the plan was scrapped. After finding a colony of bees living in one of the abandoned buildings, the company then decided to get graduate students from the University at Buffalo’s School of Architecture and Planning involved to design a new home for them. The result is the 22-feet high Elevator B, a shining metal honeycomb-shaped tower that houses the bees and also allows for visitors and school groups to walk inside to get a closer look – without getting stung. Rigidized Metals now hopes to revitalize the park as Hive City, which will act as a place for people to learn about the insects’ role in the environment, house a non-profit art center and provide building materials to businesses. Elevator B is yet another example of art tackling environmental issues, with the addition that it will also serve as an educational tool for children and adults alike. One for inspiration?