Anyone passing through New York City’s Bryant Park can avoid the headache of searching for free outlets at coffee shops to juice up their phones, powering up at outdoor tables with built-in solar charging stations. Solar company Green Barrel Energy Inc. teamed up with street furniture manufacturer Landscape Forms and the Bryant Park Corporation to provide free power with cables that fit most electronic devices.
Each small round table is set on swiveling wheels (lockable, so they can’t be stolen), making them portable enough to move out of the way for special events or to keep the rotating panels in the sun throughout the changing seasons.
The round design promotes social interaction, encouraging people to gather around and have a conversation as their gadgets charge. The six prototypes are currently being tested in Bryant Park, and six additional tables are coming soon, along with more in other areas throughout New York City and eventually, the United States.
The compact footprint makes it easy to fit the tables into existing public spaces, working with a variety of seating, umbrellas and ground surfaces. Waterproof and weatherproof, it can be left outdoors full-time without needing any special storage during rain or snow.