When was the last time you used a pay phone? For me, I think it was when I was in High School in the early 90s when I was stranded downtown. But since everyone, and I mean everyone, has a mobile phone now, pay phones are obsolete. In a way, I am saddened by the fact that phone boxes are useless. They are cinematic icons (Superman, Charade, and the Birds, just to name a few) and can be found in cities large and small around the world, in various shapes and sizes.
So what happens to all of those phone booths?
Sadly, many have already been sent to the landfill. Others lay unused and neglected on the roadside. Some, however, are being rescued and converted by very cleaver people into things such as loos and libraries, showers, and sofas.
Some of the most exciting phone box conversions have been into fish tanks. One of my favorites is by designers Benoit Deseille and Benedetto Bufalino as part of the Lyon Light Festival in France. It is a local curiosity and a big hit amongst visitors. The Lyon Light Festival is an anual event celebrating the Mother Mary, who, legend has it, spared the town from the Plague in 1643.
Other examples of phone booth aquariums are this goldfish aquarium in Japan:
This lovely red phone box aquarium in England:
This aquarium, which was part of an entire exhibit featuring creative fish tank ideas:
And this New York-themed fish tank design is from Animal Plant’s “Tanked.” In doing research for this post I came upon an ad saying that the owners of this aquarium did not like it and put it up for sale on Ebay.
Seeing creative adaptive reuse ideas such as these phone booth aquariums makes me want to go out and adopt an abondoned phone booth. I wonder if it would fit into a taxi?
If you want to see more creative phone box conversions, click here.