2013

URBAN OASIS

PACKAGING / BRANDING / UX

CLIENT: BANTUM
LOCATION: SHANGHAI

A green island in today’s megalopoleis.

By 2050, 6 billion people will be living in urbanised areas. Urban Oasis is an urban gardening kit that wants to reconnect people with nature in the urban environment by making growing vegetables on a balcony a fun, educative and engaging experience. 

Project background.  In China, where I lived for 4 years, more and more people are moving from rural areas to big megalopoleis, facing rising levels of air and water pollution, increasing amount of trash produced, food safety issues while growing more and more disconnected from nature.
Urban Oasis was born as an internal project at Bantum (previously Speck design) to satisfy people’s growing need to reconnect to nature and re-gain control over the food they eat.

Image 1 – ‘Side effects’ of China’s rapid development.
Image 2 – Urban Oasis brings you on a journey towards the rediscovery of nature in the urban environment.
Image 3 – The package includes a pot, dried soil+fertiliser, gardening tools, seeds and a watering can.

A model of sustainability

Urbanoasis is fun and it promotes a positive message. The product is an example of eco-sustainability using materials such as bamboo and rice hull fibres composite, cork agglomerate, recycled cardboard and natural wood. The variety of natural materials used let people experience different textures, smells and tactile feelings, that are becoming increasingly rare in our lives surrounded by plastic products.

Rice hull and bamboo fiber for the pot and water can
Recycled cardboard for the toolbox tray and the main wrap
Cork conglomerate for the cap that doubles as a tray
Sustainably sourced Maple and Cherry wood for the tools
Image 4 – The packaging was designed to be as minimal as possible. The product package in fact is the pot itself.
Image 5 – All the accessories are neatly organised inside the pot while the cap doubles as a base.

Learn while having fun

The packaging is the manual. The user experience was designed as a journey, where the packaging and the manual merge seamlessly and each tool is accompanied by the relevant instructions. Consecutive numbers indicate the user all the steps he has to perform from the moment he receives the kit to  harvesting.

Gardening toolbox. The iconic toolbox-like tray is made of recycled cardboard and contains all the tools in an ordinate way. The double colour divides the tools necessary to initially set up the pot and the ones useful on the long term for maintenance.

Image 6– The tray is meant to be reused and kept after the first unboxing.
Image 7– Detail of the watering can made also of rice hull and bamboo fiber.
Image 8– Gardening tools are made of maple and cherry wood.
Image 9– Follow the numbers and enjoy the process.
Image 10– Detail of the pot aerating holes shaped after seeds.
Image 11– Hand-sketched storyboard of the full user experience.
Image 12– The pot, with its modern and minimal look, was designed to fit perfectly both on a balcony or indoor.
Image 13– With Urban Oasis you can grow a wide selection of vegetables and herbs.