2024 Boston Olympic Village
Our proposal treated the site as an opportunity to knit together the surrounding neighborhoods of South Boston using a fabric of courtyard typologies; we were interested in the potential of the courtyard fabric to break down the scale of the site and offer private experiences in the city while still creating an overall public weave, providing a unified character for the neighborhood.
We were interested equally in planning the “figure” of the city, with a range of typologies which transform according to changing urban needs, as much as the “ground” — the interstitial spaces of the city are treated as an articulated ground plane which unifies the private courtyards, the network of urban courtyards, semi-private greenways, and a densely programmed, activated waterfront as an interwoven, layered system of urban activities.
For a building that was to house both administrative offices and public museum space, I began with a simple bifurcated form. One leg being for 'private' functions and the other for 'public' functions, the two unite at the top of the building to create the auditorium. From the very outset I played with the idea of 'this and that' or seeming opposites, from a programmatic, formal, and conceptual perspective. Formally, the use of the ruled surface - by nature both linear and curved - built upon this idea, as well as served the function for marrying the two programmatic legs of the building. As the semester progressed, the circulation and form of the building became more complex, and rather than two separate means of travel at the different extremities, as with the rest of the building, the systems became enmeshed in a diagonal crisscrossing of circulation from one floor to the next. In turn, the interior floors evolved from flat plates to a network of undulating ruled surfaces, carefully calibrated to respond to the exterior form and the circulation system of escalators and stairs.
Ishmael’s Passage: Fifth Floor Bridge Installation
Given that the final project was to be site specific within Rudolph Hall, we wanted to choose a location that allowed for the installation to engage the building and its users. The 5th floor bridge presents the opportunity to create a sculptural installation, visible from multiple vantage points, as well as an interactive passageway that modulates light and views. The construction logic dictated the form of the referential Jurassic rib-cage. The tectonic lattice of plywood members utilizes the bridge’s compressive tendencies to hold it together at the base. At the top, the members are woven together by a system of notches and pegged holes. The compressive force of the bridge and the tensile resistance of the plywood members create a gothic bow in the wood structure. The intention of the project was to test the humility and piety of the student body. Similar to the servant entrance of a Japanese Tea House, the participant is required to lower himself through the passageway. The arrogance and intolerance of the 5th floor occupants resulted in the destruction of the bridge as few were willing to sacrifice their pride.