Archive for February, 2012

February 22, 2012

Façade Studies

February 17, 2012

Façade

In exploring the façade treatment for my building, I have discovered a few sources of inspiration for the layering of materials and textures. I want to create beautiful patterns of light for the large gathering spaces such as the restaurant, art museum, market. I started looking through my pictures from previous site visits and I was drawn to the amount of tree canopy and light patterns coming through the foliage. I want to create some kind of screen to filter light, based on this idea, possibly using perforated metal in warm grays or copper.

February 15, 2012

Midterm Scheme

Here are a few quick drawings from the midterm pin-up on Monday, giving an overall idea of what my goals are in developing the project. I received some great feedback on what aspects are working and where improvement needs to be made. The major piece of advice that sticks out from the conversations I had, is to choose one thing and zoom in on it. My project has gotten extremely complex with a variety of functions such as housing, food production and restaurant venues, art classrooms and gallery space, as well as the educational aspect on how to grow local food as sustainable practices in the city. Because my initial interest was in food, I have decided to take this on whole-heartedly and to make this the central focus for my thesis. Art, retail, and housing can become secondary pieces that only support my development rather than taking center stage.

A few other things I need to consider in further design development is how my building connects to the spaces, paths, and buildings surrounding it by drawing a large context map and overlaying my ideas. Next, I need to develop the “gem” of my project, or the aspect of food and urban agriculture, figuring out exactly how this works from beginning to end and how people will use these spaces. (specific details) In zooming in on the “food” component, I need to put to rest the other parts by simply suggesting housing above with plugged-in floor plans from precedents that show spaces that prove to work well. Then I could color code the overall floor plans to differentiate uses, allowing myself the freedom to make the “gem” something special within the project and leaving the housing to be something quieter and less designed.

February 6, 2012

Booklet Revised

Thesis Booklet Draft

February 6, 2012

First Stab at the Site Design

Concept: The design idea focuses on how the process of food and art production occur on site and create interactive spaces for residents and visitors to exchange ideas and products. I think this could be emphasized further in my thesis project in terms of the actual building design, making it very clear how the massing of the scheme works to bring out this idea in an interesting way.

Urbanism: The project design is emphasizing a connection to the larger urban vision by maximizing the density on the site, utilizing the strong corners of urban retail, and keeping the building heights at a reasonable scale to the existing buildings around the site. The large boardwalk and public plaza I am proposing responds to the social aspect of the project, reaffirming the fact that this site will be a great place for gathering singles, families, and elderly.

Project Development: The program needs to be altered to adapt to a larger scale, adding retail at the ground floor as well as an increase in housing. The emphasis of my thesis project will be on designing the urban agriculture, art center, restaurant, and gallery spaces.

Sustainability: I need to further investigate the sustainability aspect to this project, but I am interested in looking at the full cycle of where food goes on the site. There could be a way composting fuels heat for the building?

Next Steps: The part of my scheme that seems most successful is in keeping the emphasis horizontal in a landscape-like way to produce food. The boardwalk connection to the farmers market and the solar orientation of the buildings seem like elements that work well, but I need to see exactly how the shading of surrounding structures will affect this.

The next step will be to zoom in to what I am truly passionate about for the project, and to research it. For me, this means figuring out exactly how to grow food, how to sell it, how it is recycled, composted, stored, etc. and understand how this process can work for a resident of this complex as well as someone working for a restaurant harvesting food on site. I also plan to investigate the way art is produced in the same way, and to see how these processes can interact with outdoor spaces.

February 6, 2012

The Big Picture

What are the overall goals for this thesis project? I have been asking myself this question over the last few months, but I think they need to be stated in order to progress in the design process.

OVERALL OBJECTIVE: To create an attractive, lively downtown center in the Lloyd District to bring in a diversity of people to live, work and play, keeping the site full of activity during all hours of the day.

Goals:

• Create a strong urban street front (high density massing and grounded corners of the site)

• Provide nodes of outdoor space for families, locals, and visitors (plazas, courtyards, community gardens, outdoor seating, tree canopy, paving, coverings)

• Designate permanent indoor and outdoor space to Farmers Market that can be expanded during certain days of the week

• Provide adequate parking space for residents, employees, and visitors of the site (surface parking and underground parking)

• Develop Holladay Green Street Typology (pedestrian-friendly sidewalks, bioswales, tree coverage, permeable paving, bike lanes, MAX line, vehicular traffic)

• Combine efforts for energy efficiency with the city’s energy plan starting at the Rose Quarter

• Demonstrate a close-looped system for food that focuses on a local market and composting

• Provide residents access to necessary amenities to live a healthy, active lifestyle: local food, water, energy, natural daylight, thermal comfort, privacy, outdoor connection, good air quality, transportation options, daycare service, exercise facility, and close-proximity to cultural events and job opportunities.

• Provide visitors and employees access to ample open public space: water, energy, natural daylight, thermal comfort, private vs. community space, outdoor connection, good air quality, transportation options, and close-proximity to cultural events and job opportunities.

• Interesting architectural spaces to evoke creativity, liveliness, and culture within the district (material choice, urban design, patterns, structure, open vs. closed space – light vs. dark, connections to nature, etc.)

Challenges/Obstacles:

• Surrounding empty parking lots, primarily office buildings, hotels – doesn’t make for a prime living location for families

• Noisy, busy Lloyd Center Mall could be disruptive for residents

• Run-down buildings of harsh materials (concrete, steel, glass, brick)

• Large scale of the chosen site could be overwhelming and presents issues of accessibility and wasted space

• Lloyd Office Tower on the chosen site could take away from the residential feeling of the project

• Lloyd District lacks cultural identity to latch onto

This project focuses on revitalizing a part of the city that is currently lacking in activity, commerce, and connectedness. What does it mean to live, work, and play in one location? The overlapping layers of different uses will be what makes the site a fully functioning, lively environment that can sustain itself over time. Each layer represents a person and their primary activity. If all of these layers coexist, there will be opportunities to share ideas and work together, allowing for the ultimate place for exchange, networking, and commerce. The building’s architecture can also reflect these layers of a local food and art exchange, through materials, structure, separation of spaces, and the blending of indoor and outdoor environments.