Rely Protective Public Seating is a seat for barrier and protection designed for cities aimed at preventing accidents or terrorist attacks. Designed by designer Joe Doucet, this bench has been installed in New York City for a lively space and consists of 3D precast concrete units that can be assembled as needed. Embracing design and functionality, Rely stands in stark contrast to the classic urban counter-terrorism barriers and wants to offer meeting and rest spaces to be placed within the city context, while retaining its function as a public protection.
The main aim of the project is for an area to become part of the urban landscape without too much impact and which covers its main tasks through pleasing design. Each unit weighs over a tonne and is connected to each other by steel rods, a system that allows for the creation of a barrier capable of absorbing impact and ultimately stopping the vehicle in the event of a hazard. The components are obtained through digital extrusion, a method that has never been used before in concrete which makes this bench an object to study as a solution to urban risks.
Rely relies on changing urban space requirements and shares them intelligently. By converting barricades into useful seats and then applying them to public spaces, this project invites people in and encourages them to inhabit the area, turning something functional into something that is also well designed and beautiful. We love this project that tries to eliminate fear by turning negatives into positives. This allows people to claim space that would otherwise be taken from them.