With the app, participants – and there is no age limit on this game – can “catch” elements in Pokémon Go style. They also immediately get fun (historical) facts and they can connect that element with other elements to build molecules.

Mechelen, 22 May 2019 – Today, a group of very enthusiastic young people went in search of chemical elements in the inner city of Mechelen. The search was part of the launch of ResourCity, an interactive app developed by VITO, making young people enthusiastic about chemistry and the circular economy in a playful way. On the initiative of the city of Mechelen and with Technopolis as partner/promoter, the game has now been completely customised to Mechelen.

Every city is a treasure and is full of chemical elements! These chemical building blocks, from carbon and oxygen to gold, cobalt and platinum, are abundantly present in a city. Some chemical elements are simply found in the air you breathe, others in all kinds of products and certainly in buildings. In short, every city is a ResourCity: a city full of resources or materials, so much that you can find more gold in a city than in a gold mine.

With the app ResourCity we make this “city mine” or “urban mine” visible through augmented reality technology. We not only want to tailor the content to interested cities or municipalities, but we also want to have them match the final attainment levels of the various educational umbrella organisations.

Philip Marynissen

It might seem obvious that iron can be found in Mechelen, but the fact that gold is hidden in the inner city of Mechelen and around Technopolis and that you can also find platinum and titanium, is less obvious. The players are encouraged to search for elements themselves, and, if they find them, to discover what they can do with it. Mechelen is a true “urban mine”, bursting with all kinds of chemical elements. ResourCity not only leads the players to places of tourist interest but also to beautiful places and urban projects that are linked to the circular economy and are specific to Mechelen.

With this app we extend the philosophy of Mechelen Kinderstad and we ensure that the children who grew up with Rommy, also remain stimulated as young adults. Because by playing this playful, interactive and educational app, teenagers will get more out on the streets and explore Mechelen. This way, the city of Mechelen gives the signal that it also wants to continue to offer young people a place in beautiful Mechelen. The combination of fun, education and meeting the demands of the job market also makes this a top concept. It therefore deserves the attention and effort to make it a great success.

Abdrahman Labsir
Mechelen Alderman of Youth

When people say that something is “chemical”, it is often with a negative undertone. While all substances around us and their interactions are chemistry. All these substances can also become a raw material again. ResourCity is the ideal way to impart chemical knowledge to young people in a smart and interactive way with a view to a more sustainable use of raw materials.

Marina De Bie
Mechelen Alderman of Education, Sustainability and Smart city

The ResourCity app is one of the tools to get young people interested in science and technology and show them how they can lead to a more circular economy. The demand for and the need for STEM experts (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) is increasing. To give young people extra incentive to get started with ResourCity, the players who complete the game get a free ticket for Technopolis.

Technopolis is fan of ResourCity. What would be unpleasant about it? Gamification in combination with augmented reality and chemistry (right in the year Technopolis celebrates the Year of Chemistry): even with one of those aspects I had been here today to promote the app. But what makes me an absolute fan of the app is that you start looking for chemical elements. Technopolis recently developed a Mendeleev game in collaboration with essenscia vlaanderen, Co-valent and nine chemical companies, in which you also look for chemical elements. Hurry up and play ResourCity: you will receive a free ticket for Technopolis and you can test the Mendeleev game at Technopolis!

Stephane Berghmans
CEO at Technopolis

The launch of ResourCity in Mechelen has also led to a unique rendezvous. Hanneke Hydrogen, the mascotte of ResourCity, and Rommy Rombouts, the mascot of Mechelen Kinderstad (child city), have extensively shared experiences.