Club WATT has got to be one of the coolest sustainable initiatives out there. The Nightclub is partially powered by its patrons. The Club is home to a dance floor that turns the energy output of dancing clubbers into electricity for its own use. The dance floor uses the piezoelectric effect; there are certain materials that when squeezed become charged and produce energy. When a club patron decides to get out on the floor and bust a move, the up and down action that most dancing produces (from the floors point of view anyway) compresses cells containing piezoelectric material. The individual panels measure 65 X 65cm. The downward pressure powers tiny generators beneath the floor which then sent the electricity to a microchip that controls the LED lights on the surface of the panel. The floor has about one centimeter of give to it, when the cells are compressed, the panels create electricity. The floor measures about 30 square meters.
Club WATT is the product of an environmental research group made up of a group of local architects, academics and engineers convened by Döll Architects and Enviu. Eventually they created the Sustainable Dance Club company.
Currently the dance floor at WATT is configured to power the light show in and around the dance floor. The floor could be used to power anything, but the owners of Club WATT wanted the patrons to be able to see the results of the energy that they create.
Club WATT also has a number of other sustainable features, such as waterless urinals, and a rainwater collection system which collects water to be used in the toilets. This is also illustrated as the water pipes are clear throughout the club so clubbers can see the rain water being pulled up from the tanks and to the toilets every time one gets flushed. There are also your standard innovations like solar panels and low-waste bars.
The club spent about $257,000 on the dance floor, an investment that the club’s owner is aware he will not recoup out of energy savings alone, it is afterall a first generation model and not all that efficient. However the floor also attracts attention and thats golden in the world of clubbing.
Club WATT has a number of different services(from the club website):
Stage: The stage will be trendsetting in Rotterdam and the Netherlands. With a healthy ambition to put Rotterdam back on the international scene. A fertile ground for new pop bands as well as established names. A wide range of music styles. It will be a low-threshold and top-class ‘platform’ for anything and everything qualifying as cultural/social, such as film, fashion, literature, art (exhibitions) and music. No obscure joint staging a small band and no inaccessible gallery showing priceless art. The ‘right’ blend of commerce and pure culture. Think of exhibitions, radio and television broadcasts, fashion shows and young persons’ debates.
Modern club: Staging of various club nights from Thurdays to Sundays inclusive. Mainly dance music, wide range.
Café: A bustling and accessible meeting place. Business appointments, a drink with some friends before the start of a concert, coffee with coconut pie with grandma. The menu offers authentic dishes for a get-together or a modest dinner. In the summer of 2009 WATT will have extended the café well outdoors, towards the park. Check here for the menu.
Theater: The name represents the atmosphere of the room. Theater stands for entertainment, culture and artistic productions. It is the perfect space for spontaneous, smaller performances or relaxed get-togethers. It can also be opened up towards the café, which makes having a cup of coffee a unique experience in itself.
Business to Business: WATT’s function rooms are especially suitable for facilitating your business meetings, product presentations as well as staff parties of 20 to 2000 people. Needless to say, WATT’s function rooms are a great profiling opportunity for companies aiming to contribute to a sustainable society.