The park bench that recharges your electronic devices makes its Canadian debut in Newmarket
NEWMARKET -- Newmarket has a new bench.
But it’s not just any bench, it’s an environmentally friendly way to re-charge your devices while you are relaxing at Riverwalk Commons.
The Soofa Bench was developed in an MIT media lab start-up and uses solar power to charge up your smart phones and tablets after sunset.
This bench was launched in Boston in 2014 and can now be found in 18 states and five countries. Edmonton was the first Canadian City to have two of these benches installed this past June, while Newmarket becomes the first town in Ontario to embrace this new technology.
“Today, we celebrate yet another important milestone in Newmarket’s unique innovation and environmental sustainability stories,” said Mayor Tony Van Bynen. “As a key focus of our council, we will work together to revitalize and innovate Newmarket and will continue to seek opportunities to bring even more leading-edge technology and environmental sustainability programs and services to our community.”
A year from now the benches will have the ability to be upgraded with sensors to measure usage and pedestrian traffic at Riverwalk Commons. This could be valuable information for the town when attracting new businesses to the community.
A standard city bench can cost upwards of $2,000, while the Soofa Bench starts at $3,800 with the price increasing as you add features. The only drawback for the Soofa Bench compared to other companies that have solar powered charging stations is that they have outlets but no cables so you need to bring your own for charging.
The bench itself sits 3 people who can charge their devices, while their children have fun in the splash pad.