Archive for May, 2012

May 3, 2012


I realized after the midterm that I need to re-evaluate the reasons for my building form, and make the presentation stronger in terms of the story that I present to reviewers. Going back to my first post, I looked at some of the guiding factors that have pushed me to this point. The inspiration of the grapevine has been in the back of my mind throughout the term, and reading back why I found this plant to be inspiring in the first place has helped me make the connection to what the project is focused on today.

From my earliest concept model, I had this idea of wrapping the building with nature as a grapevine wraps around solid built forms like fences and posts in order to grow tall. In order to build healthy communities in tower forms, you have to bring nature upwards and “wrap” the spaces with connections to natural light, air, and access to plants and agriculture.

Vines also dictate how the planning of the spaces were decided, keeping the “stem” as the central circulation and the “fruits” as the public spaces on the edges. The fruit of the vine is considered the heart or life of the vine and could be a metaphor for the heart of the site, which in this case is the central market. Vines create beautiful canopies, filtering in light as the perforated screens would do.

In terms of structure, the forms are made up of simple steel framed buildings that would have 30′ x 30′ bays across the site, 16″ columns and 14″ deep beams. A layer of concrete goes on top of the steel floor plates and a standard rain screen assembly for the exterior wall panels. I had previously thought about using a wood composite product for the facade, but I have been looking into terracotta panels that may work better.

I need to work on my sun shading devices and how the graphic of the perforated metal looks. I also want to figure out my tectonic model and give it some material quality to study the daylighting of the atrium, cafe, and housing spaces.