Public Square Studio

American common space is in a state of flux. As demographics shift, technologies advance, cultural mores morph, and economies + politics churn, our cherished public spaces are becoming obsolete empty vessels of nostolgia. How can architects and urban desingers alter these spaces to accomodate the new and ever-changing character of American public space? This is the question that Kent State University's CUDC Fall 2006 Graduate Studio will investigate.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


The former site of a slaughterhouse in Paris....Parc de la Villette was designed by Bernard Tschumi to be an urban cultural park..
The design is a superimposition of 3 systems: Points(Point like activities),Lines ( linear activities) and Surfaces(Surfaces activities)..
Points or Folies as Tschumi calls them are intense areas of activity placed according to existing site characteristics.
Lines are the orthogonal system of high density pedestrian movement and the curvilinear paths across thematic gardens.
Surfaces are large expanses of left over surfaces
STRATEGIES FOR PUBLIC SQUARE
1.Exploding programmatic requirements-distribution of built mass throughout the site.
2.Minimal interference with the existing setup of the Square-preserving its historical importance,also to avoid problems regarding traffic and RTA bus stops.
3.Points, Lines and Surfaces:
As the site is much smaller, also to create more interest,it is a distorted grid, derived from the existing bus stops at the Public Square.
The lines/vectors of movement are derived based on function and just by following the direction of one grid point from another.
The Surfaces are just the 4 patches of land,used as they are,rather the 3 available patches and the fourth one with the Soldiers and Sailors is retained only with the addition of pathways.
Such a system has been adopted so that the importance does not shift , from the bus stops to the newly built structures.Also to make the bus stops not just bus stops but buildings with various functions hence buildings that are specially designed for the particular function, also to serve as bus stops.
Also,not all of these points/nodes would be built forms; as of now, only the ones within the square and the rest would be incorporated in future for other functions.
Also,considering the traffic counts,redirecting the traffic from West 2nd flanking the top left chunk of the Public Square to allow for the entry to the plaza.
An effort to change the view of the Public Square from one of traffic/chaos to that with better defined areas,activities and forms.

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