September 4, 2008 / 7:38 PM / 10 years ago

Dutch venue makes clubbing environmentally friendly

ROTTERDAM (Reuters) - A club where dancers generate power to light the floor, drinks come in recyclable cups and toilets flush with rain water opened in the Netherlands on Thursday, hoping to lure environmentally conscious clubbers.

Rotterdam’s WATT, which is designed to save about 30 percent on energy and carbon emissions and 50 percent on water and waste compared to other nightclubs, has included sustainable elements into everything from its architecture to its cafe menus.

“We want to show that sustainability can be integrated into lifestyles, and integrating it into something fun shows that sustainability can be fun,” said Michel Smit of Sustainable DanceClub (SDC) consultants, who helped develop the concept.

The club follows another “eco” club in London, and some restaurants and cafes have billed themselves as sustainable based on their menus and ethical standards to attract an increasingly green-conscious public.

Clubbers tested out WATT’s main showpiece, a dance floor on which the disco lights become more dynamic as more people grooved around on it. A meter shows how much power is being generated, making the revelers want to go even wilder.

“When you start dancing, you generate electricity, and it makes the floor come alive. The more you dance, the more the floor comes to life,” said Daan Roosegaarde, who was involved in its design.

While in most clubs a trip to the toilet will not be a major event the architects behind WATT say they have attempted to create a “pee experience” as you watch rain water from the roof travel through transparent pipes when you flush.

“Minimal waste” bars serve drinks in recyclable plastic cups, and drinks are stored in big tanks in the basement to save energy through a central cooling system. Food in WATT’s cafe is mainly sourced locally and from organic producers.

Smit said SDC was now trying to export their ideas abroad, and was planning to introduce the dance floor in the United States.

“We are not just focusing on Holland, we want to make as many clubs as possible sustainable, worldwide,” he said.

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