eLabs Watt Scooter has a new chapter to add to what I wrote last year.
They have just won the Design Indaba innovation award for their practical & sustainable commuter solution.
For more information directly from Design Indaba, click here.
For my interview with the creators, click here.
Well done gentlemen!
Interview with Louw Roets & Mik Wertheim Aymes
Other Share holders: Daryn Molenaar & Johann van Niekerk
(Watt Scooter from Design Indaba)
Louw & Mik are 3rd year students @ Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT), Daryn Molenaar & Johann van Niekerk are both staff there. The electric push scooter has flowed out of an alternative transport project in their 2nd year, into a collaborative project and now into a small start-up called eLabs that is focused on city transport.
Mik describes the scooter as “a piece of Africa”, emphasising the importance of community involvement and sourcing local materials. Louw pointed out how thrilling it is to show off the high technological standards achieved when South Africa was forced to be self-sufficient, but applied to a sustainable project with benefits for the communities who suffered back then. Unfortunately some of the components do currently need to be sourced overseas, but will probably be replaced with local ones if equivalents become available. They stressed the importance of considering the long-term socio-economic benefits of choosing local wherever possible.
It was great to see old friends, colleagues & past students; and good to see what was on offer this year. Here are my super quick thoughts on the 2014 Design Indaba Expo.
Bumping into Mugendi (no stranger to design circles).
My favorite of from the Africa Design exhibit.
Edu chair with great potential by interior designer Simone Biggs.
e labs charging ahead scooter design
And finally the DID stand by Absa
Particularly the soccer ball, or rather socket ball… and the slow cooker that was a modern upgrade on what my granny used on the farm when I was a little girl.
Lots of the usual stuff too, some nicely improved upon over the years.
More detail to follow! The exhibit is open for 1 more day Sunday 2nd March 2014, till 8pm at the CTICC so go have a look if you are in Cape Town.
You can also see their website.