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Alexander Stinchcomb explorations of design


Alexander Stinchcomb explorations of design


Many years ago the great British explorer George Mallory, who was to die on Mount Everest, was asked why did he want to climb it. He said, “Because it is there.�


Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. 2007-2008

Bangor, Washington. 2005

Nashville, Tennessee. 1985-2003 Knoxville, Tennessee. 2009-Present

Groton, Connecticut. 2004-2005

Weimar, Germany. 2013


Guam, Micronesia. 2005-2009


CONTENTS 08 Framing Views 12 Urban Connections 16 Dell Dormitories 20 Redefining the Garage 24 Student Union 28 Casa de Sara 32 Community Boathouse 38 Academy of Wine 44 Sensing & Perceiving 50 Limits of the Horizon 58 Explorations


FRAMING VIEWS Abstract Retreat | 2009

Designing upon the basic fundamental elements of architecture: line, square, rectangle, this project seeks to amplify and abstract the design concept into a retreat for a film director. Students began by composing a twodimensional abstract composition, consisting of these elements. In sequence, the analysis process was then applied to identify the shapes and voids of the design through multiple iterations, drawing’s and models. This development thus resulted in the creation of a final threedimensional design for a retreat that places emphasis upon the concept of framing views. Behind this final design, the creation of vantages and experiences for the audience is reflective of the director’s position as the designer of perspectives. This was achieved through the supporting elements of balance, axis, and rhythm. The project’s emphasis was on developing these elements in a way to capture and express powerful vantage points for the viewer. Ultimately, this retreat gives way to both a physically and emotionally strong experience. The design positions, structure, and landscape result in the culmination of the main design concept.

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URBAN CONNECTIONS Knoxville, Tennessee | 2010

The Culinary Institute for the University of Tennessee is an exploration into designing in section in both building and site section. Located in the historic Old City district in downtown Knoxville, the design builds upon the architectural depth as urban communication. Spatially, the design attempts to draw from both the vibrancy of the city street and the social and public nature of the culinary arts into a vertical marketplace. Projecting outward over the sidewalk below the great bulk of the buildings body reaches towards the street. This cantilever piece cast a shadow noting the entry which visitors pass. Neighboring buildings on both sides firmly establish the urban edge of this projection. The building’s upper levels extend outward, seeking light, air, and most importantly, views. In section the interior situations concentrate on crossovers between ambient conditions [city, sky, program] and circulation patterns. Three programmatic zones show three depths. The entry cantilever containing the dining and teaching kitchens reaches towards the streetscape. A reference to the busy streets of the city, the central space projects up to the sky creating a central court with a winding staircase that fosters meeting and connection. The rear contains the bulk of the culinary kitchens and teaching spaces, along with the roof garden, which opens towards the southern sun. All together, these depths allow much of the building’s content to appear; but also the urban conditions under which those appearances make sense.

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[fig.b: facade]

[fig.a: dining + skin]

this design draws inspiration from the cityscape. varying levels of translucent glass work with light and movement to activate the street and the activity inside, drawing the city within.

the mass of the building containing the dining slips over the street inviting the city and pedestrians to observe and participate in the activity contained within. the skin of the building along with the mass acts as a lens and funnel at the same time, drawing bystanders in and focusing views onto the urban landscape. the skin doesnt wrap the building completely, but peals away revealing the programs.

[fig.a]

[fig.b]

[fig.c]


[fig.c: grand stair + teaching kitchens] vertical circulation intertwines creating the urban bustle of the street, offering a place to mingle and meet. the winding stairs are open to the heavens, drawing in natural light. above the dining area, in open suspended spaces, are the teaching kitchens displaying the culinary arts.

[fig.d]

[fig.d: roof garden] the program calls for a garden for training, its placement on the rear of the top floor is to maximize the southern sun exposure and natural elements for harvesting.


DELL DORMITORIES University of Virginia | 2011

Dealing with the architectural complexities of campus design, this project’s interests deal with establishing a new nexus for student living, social, and intellectual life at the University of Virginia. Founded in 1819, the campus of the University of Virginia is viewed as a sacred place, mindful of Thomas Jefferson’s campus design. The campus is focused around the iconic Jefferson Lawn with connected spaces at the periphery. This design attempts to recreate the spirit of Jefferson’s design principles of curiosity, invention, and site awareness while uniting landscape and architecture, interior and exterior spaces, presenting a window onto the students’ daily life. Located within walking distance from the Lawn, the Dell Dormitories are on a ten-acre basin site near the freshmen dorms. Connecting with the surrounding natural and built landscapes, the design takes its cues from the student paths and site boundaries. Four gateway-like dormitory buildings erupt and splay from the hill, lining the rear of the site, enclosing green areas that become courtyards and amphitheaters for student leisure. 16

Each building is elevated from the site providing unobstructed paths and views throughout. Tools of expression, the Dorms celebrate the uniqueness of student living. Each dorm room has three sliding glass panels that are of different opacities; when viewed from outside these panels come together to create a facade that is ever-changing, creating curiosity and invention. This project is an attempt to understand the spirit of the place and to express the uniqueness of the student.


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a. taking cues from the circulation routes and views, the dorms project from four major site circulation paths into the dell.

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b. the dorms become restricted by the site boundaries.

c. reacting to the site conditions, the dorms angle away from the boundaries of the site creating individually unique dormitories.


lobby

lounge + entertainment

restaurant + cafe

[room detail] each room is envisioned to be an expressive element that makes up the whole. this is done by having sliding panels for each room.

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REDEFINING THE GARAGE University of Tennessee | 2011 Partners: Darren Brown, Christian Powers

The University of Tennessee Knoxville’s Master Plan suggested the removal of several significant buildings, including the University Center’s Parking Structure and Plaza, by Robert B. Church. As it serves as a center point to the activities on campus, our team was challenged to provide alternative set of designs to help expand the universities program, while preserving its history. The site of the parking garage serves as a critical point of focus for campus life and is a crossing point for both vehicular circulation and pedestrians on the plaza above. Whether the garage is being occupied on a daily basis or on game day, this parking garage serves a variety of functions. Next to the garage are the current University Center, Haslam Business Building, Stokley Office Building, and the primary bridge route to the Hill, this historic center of campus. In the original design the main program of the garage was a basic parking garage with the addition of a bus stop. In our design, we recognized this moment from the pedestrian mall and directed the movement into the plaza in several entrances. By extending the Plaza, we have allowed higher occupancy on top of the plaza and throughout the structure. As we asked ourselves what could we do in order to increase the occupancy, we understood the plaza needed to be convenient for the pedestrian. The plaza will now contain a waiting lobby for visitors on campus, a set of “sweet-shop” proposed with the new University Center, and a convenient bookstore for daily students. With the exception of the patio and seating added onto the plaza, the massing inside the garage is dedicated to the various types of transportations and their methods of circulation from a major scale into the garage. Buses are served in the front of the structure, followed by bikes and pedestrian traffic from multiple locations that enter into the garage at different levels. Vehicular traffic is still allowed into the parking structure, but has been reduced for the purpose of increasing pedestrian and bike traffic and encouraging the green policy of the university, energy and occupancy of this space in a more efficient way.

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existing structure transportation hub + bookstore car parking bike parking

[hub] this area now becomes the university’s main transportation hub, offering amenities like: bus loading and unloading, atm wall, lounge and cafe, and parking.

[hanging bicycle and running tracks] the addition of this track system to the parking garage provides bicycle commuters ease of access and circulation, while lowering pedestrian and bike bottlenecks. bicycle parking is now offered in the garage, persuading the use of bikes over vehicles.


[bookstore] the addition of a small bookstore activates the plaza by drawing in student and pedestrian movement, students now have a destination to go to

[sun-screen] working from the original covered spaces on the plaza, our team felt it was necessary to extend the cover over a larger portion. the new sun-screen promotes outdoor lounging, dining, and studying.


STUDENT UNION University of Tennessee | 2011 EURECA Finalist

Whereas conventional student unions focus on programmatic questions, this design seamlessly integrates campus life with that of the experience of the student. Acknowledging the university’s goals and site limitations, the design seeks to create an extension into the campus landscape as well as an iconic building reflecting the values and aspirations as the central gathering place for the campus and city of Knoxville, Tennessee. From both externally and internally, the building is conceived as a vehicle to foster interaction and connection among daily campus life. Thus, the architectural promenade becomes the driving force of this proposed design. Analyzing the broad student interactions and movements across campus in conjunction with the distinct programmatic questions produced a unique solution to the spatial organization of the design. An iconic translucent volume floats over a grounded plinth, that acts as a single identifiable prism of activity; the plinth below is at the same time sculpted to engage the multiple approaches and levels of pedestrian and vehicular access to the building. Routes and avenues open and splay the building and landscape, providing unique gathering spaces and marking the entries and circulations to the student union. Arising from the specifics of the program and the daily life of the student, the design creates a vibrant and open environment -- one that encourages dialogue, connections, and creative exchange. A continuous lobby, containing a monumental stair, carves up through the plinth and translucent volume. The stairs, along with the various programmatic elements extend the dialogue between the spaces and activity to a broader audience, allowing for personal explorations into the daily life of the student. Each space becomes a theatre, a place to celebrate the specific activity within. a place to celebrate the specific activity within.

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cumberland ave.

Student Offices + Auditorium

Dining

Philip Fulmer Way

Volunteer Blvd.

volunteer blvd.

Cumberland Avenue

Food Court

Entertainment

Parking Garage

Ground Floor Plan

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At street level, the transparent facade invites bystanders to observe and take part in the intensity of activity contained within, The building reverberates with light, shadow and transparency through an exterior double skin whose semi-transparent layer of perforated rusted steel wraps the building’s glazed envelope, while also allowing transparencies to reveal the creative activity occurring within. Responding to its urban context, the sculpted facade establishes a distinctive identity for the student union.

Section through Theatre

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A vertical piazza—a central space for informal, social, intellectual and creative exchange—forms the heart of the student union. This vertical piazza becomes the social heart of the building, providing a place for impromptu and planned meetings, student gatherings, lectures, and for intellectual debates. The ground floor, which is set below grade, is surrounded with amphitheater slab seating, fostering outdoor gathering spaces that frame the ground floor programs; ballrooms, grand bookstore, and main services. From the ground floor entry lobby, the grand stair ascends four stories into a semi transparent cube.

South Elevation

The main plaza a floor above the ground, is on grade with the existing parking garage. This main plaza provides both an open and closed air dining and recreational experiences. The main auditorium, lobbies and meeting places—including student lounges, seminar rooms, lecture halls, offices, and seating areas overlooking the campus —are organized within the central transparent cube.

Longitudinal Section

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CASA DE SARA Santa Cruz, Bolilvia | 2012

Casa de Sara, a local foundation which provides under privileged children in Bolivia and South America with schooling, approached our third year design studio to design a primary school in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Serving underprivileged children as well as the community, the proposed design provides a commune for knowledge and progress. This school seeks to be a place for gathering, a place in which learning becomes a tool for the children and community.

but facilitates the natural cooling of the buildings by the southern winds. At the same time the buildings utilize green roofs that also cool and protect the buildings from the heat and rain. The green roofs extend the life of the school considerably compared to that of regular roof, requiring little or no maintenance.

Working from the program constraints the design fosters learning through discovery, imagination, and experience, such as the classroom’s connection to the landscape and the movements of daily rituals. By utilizing the architectural promenade the design begins to create paths of discovery and learning through the procession of spaces indoor and outdoor alike. These moments begin to detail the design creating courtyards, openings, lighting, and paths. Located on a low sloping site in rural Santa Cruz , Bolivia, the new facility positions itself to maximize the natural environment and surrounding landscape. The orientation on site not only shields itself from the harsh sun and rains Site Plan

[fig. a]

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[fig. b]


kitchen class class class

gathering

art

cafeteria

class

exterior play music class class class class admin.

class

entry

class class

Floor Plan

[fig. c]

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Figures Previous Page: [fig.a: market, store & guardhouse] The program calls for a market, which various products grown on the school grounds like goat milk, cheese, and fruit can be sold to the community.

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[fig.b: showers & shoe cleaning] The main roads, which many children walk to school on are only dirt. Children are often covered in mud and dirt before starting the school day. This portion of the design, an extension of the program, is located right after entering the front gate; providing ease of access for the children to clean themselves and their muddy shoes off prior to entering the main school grounds.

[fig.c: shoe stowage] Borrowing from the Japanese culture and Montessori culture the design includes, adjacent to the mudroom, a wash room and shoe stowage pavilion. This is intended for the children to place their clean, wet shoes in lockers to dry for the day. The children will then be given sandals for use during the school day.


Wall Section: [roof] site cast reinforced concrete slab, beam, and joist water-proofing protective liner 2” rigid board insulation separation fabric liner 1” drain plates 6” gravel perimeter [lintel]

The school, consisting of grades pre-k to seventh, is designed to connect with the natural environment all around. Classrooms are open to the landscape outside while providing protection from the harsh tropical elements. Each building is connected so that the children and teachers have a covered loggia to walk to and from classes and rooms.

steel lintel attatched to roof slab aluminum coping sloped toward roof [windows + panels]

wood framing and sill steel framing track system insulated glass or wood paneling

[wall] 8” x 16” x 8” CMU inner wythe (reinforced and filled) vertical reinforcement at corners, openings and horizontal joint reinforcement 2” rigid board insulation 2” air space [ground] 6” crushed gravel vapor barrier 4” cast-in-place wire reinforced concrete slab 2” cast-in-place terrazo ground slab [foundation] 2’-6” x 12” deep reinforced concrete strip foundation

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COMMUNITY BOATHOUSE Nashville, Tennessee | 2012 Finalist Competition | HBG Competition Winner

Inspired by the character, culture, and vibrancy of both the sport of rowing and the city of Nashville, the new boathouse will be an instrument of culture and leisure, a place to participate with or reflect upon the very essence of the architecture and sport. Serving as a critical point of focus for the design, the site of the boathouse becomes a crossing point between Cumberland Park and the proposed future development along the north shore of the Cumberland River. Consequently, the new boathouse manifests itself as a beacon for rowing enthusiasts and the public, marking the center of the new park district. With the addition of the boathouse and park elements the site seeks to be an interwoven riverfront, a synthesis of destinations, traditions, and landscapes.

Through the form, spaces, and materials the new boathouse creates a lasting, monumental, and transparent architecture. Activities of the sport separate and open the building forms, providing glimpses into and through the specific programs of the building, such as boat circulation and boat storage [see diagram below]. A heart for public culture and events, as well as an establishment for rowers to gather, the building and site lend themselves to nurturing an iconic hub for the park and city.

Movements, externally and internally, drive the design, which strives to engage the bystander and participants with rowing and the architecture. Analyzing the movement of boats and pedestrians across the site in conjunction with the distinct programmatic questions produced a unique solution to the spatial organization of the design. By weaving the two distinct paths of the boats and pedestrians together, the design creates moments of pause that places the procession of boats on display.

titans stadium

cumberland park

site

downtown nashville

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cumberland river


metal coping

board-form concrete

3” extensive soil mix

return hvac ducting 18” dia.

aluminum framed skylight 4”x 3/4” wood slat ceiling

3” rigid insulation

wood framed storefront system

polished concrete floor

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Positioned on site by the boat’s circulation and activity, the new boathouse also lends itself to maximize the natural environment and surrounding landscape. It is because of the orientation on site that provides for opportunities to combine structure, circulation, and light - offering illumination into spaces, providing views to the surrounding landscape and city, and connecting the building through the structural and spatial overlaps. Separating the building into two main parts, boat storage and public spaces, creates the ideal spaces and proportions for establishing a rhythm of space and structure. Conditioned areas of the building are serviced through a central core; housing the mechanical, kitchen, and restrooms alike. Through binding the city, landscape and rowing, the new boathouse creates an unified experience throughout.

cumberland park

veteran’s bridge above

elevated boardwalk circulation diagram | nts

circulation diagram | nts

circulation diagram | nts circulation diagram | nts

unit to whole diagram | nts

unit to whole diagram | nts

Ground Floor Plan unit to whole diagram | nts unit to whole diagram | nts

structure diagram | nts

structure diagram | nts

structure diagram | nts structure diagram | nts

Site Section

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massing diagram | nts

massing diagram | nts


boat storage bays

boat staging

class trophy boat ramp

entry kitchen

cafe

exterior seating

cumberland river

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Ground Floor ECS Plan

Longitudinal Section

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The professors challenged the studio to follow LEED certification standards with his or her designs. Achieving LEED silver under the USGBC standards, this boathouse not only utilizes these standards, but explores and exploits them for a more effective design. To meet the high level of efficiency and precision necessary for the project, the boathouse’s various spaces are serviced through a central core, maximizing floor space for boat storage and repair, dining, and training. Focused on integrating building with efficiency the design uses ground sourced heat pumps, locally produced and recycled materials, as well as innovative heating and cooling systems to name a few.

Second Floor ECS Plan

Section through Boathouse

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ACADEMY OF WINE Lutzmannsburg, Austria | 2013 Bauhaus University HBG Competition Finalist Partner: Julia Seewald

In keeping with the character and uniqueness of Lutzmannsburg, Austria, the Academy of Wine integrates architecture with culture. By melding the village typology and history of wine production into a campus for learning and teaching, the design becomes an open canvas, an active tool, shaping the architecture and landscape of the design. Taking cues from campus designs, the corridor and courtyard play an integral part in the design of this campus. Formulating from the conceptual diagrams, the buildings are arranged to form interior courtyards, which are unified by an exterior central corridor [see diagrams adjacent]. Acting as the social heart of the campus the corridor and courts provide spaces for impromptu and planned classes, gatherings, events, and lectures. Internally, the buildings are conceived as vehicles to foster collaboration and dialogue among rooms and courtyards. It is only the buildings and entrances that open to the interior courts and corridor. These provide unique opportunities for open lecture rooms and classrooms for informal social, intellectual, and creative exchange. Utilizing undulating building heights, the structures maintain low profiles and a strong connection with the surrounding context of the village. Building roofs are also terraces, which are reached by stairs located in gaps; these gaps offer unique moments for passage through or thickening of walls to separate buildings from one another. At street level, the blank facade with only the gaps invites the individual to peek into or to explore the campus within.

Site Plan

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D.01 kitchen

admin work

classroom

cafe

classroom

entry

D.02

lecture admin storage

D.03

D.04

D.01-04. Initial concept diagrams informed design decisions of the larger site layout as well as the programmatic positioning within the built forms. Conceived as a campus, one that is reflective of the village context, the design relies heavily upon these diagrams-forming a series of buildings as an unified whole.

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Ground Floor Plan

meeting

classroom


garage

classroom

below grade gym

classroom

events hall

cellar

classroom

wine tasting

laboratories classroom

lecture

wine production

library

From the Village Green visitors and students alike are greeted by the two-story administration building, which offers a single entry onto the campus. Singlestory academy buildings, which include classrooms, lecture halls, gym, and laboratories form the central portion of the campus. The largest of the buildings, the “barn� acts as the culminating communal element; a main public space that houses a library, events hall, and wine cellar.

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Visiting the site unique, existing qualities were discovered that our design responds too; home entries addressed the public zone of the village green, living was contained in a long, linear home centrally located on each property, small connected gardens and lawns spanned the interstitial spaces, and barns addressed the rear of the property. Utilizing these qualities, the Wine Academy capitalizes on the unique elements of the site. Buildings were treated as volumes, inserted and defined by the existing conditions of the site context as well as the new designed exterior courtyards of the campus. The use of local stone accentuates the project’s solid and grounded presence. Warm redwood, polished concrete, and stone creates quiet yet complex textures and a tactile sensuality. Every part of the Wine Academy -from the courtyards to the materials to the buildings and the landscape -shapes a coherent and serene environment.

Building Typology

Exterior Corridor & Connections

Courtyards

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SENSING & PERCEIVING Dayton, Tennessee | 2013 Partner: Jenny Budde

Reshaping the perceptions of home through the haptic sense and temporal changes, this project seeks to explore how the house can become ‘home’ with the use of the haptic, tactile, sense and with the study of change throughout the day, the year, and the life of the residents. Haptic sensory perception is the experience of a space, place, and material that becomes a genuine physical encounter; it is extended to address the essence of spatial sensory perception that reflects our bodily experience of material textural qualities; how can the changing materials, which gather age and color, light, and temperature, create a sense of the homeplace? How can the changing light, daily activities, and seasonal colors affect our sense of home? Relating to the We Care of Dayton mission, the design seeks to engage the residents in a housing community that relies heavily on creating a sense of homeplace for those who have been displaced. We believe it is important to understand the implications and perceptions of time in the context of the We Care project because of the transition of users to a new location, offering a change to be measured against the familiarity of daily life. It is when things change that time is best perceived; the changing life of aging adults is perhaps, then, the best platform for understanding time. Using a single building design, we believe that a community, a homeplace, is inherently created; not only are the residents more likely to come together as a family, but they are also given greater use of the site, due to the density of the units, providing more exterior opportunities to notice the changing light, colors, and temperatures of the day and of the year. Morning light is shared by all residents, exterior and interior colors change at different rates, and pleasant temperatures may be enjoyed outside the building or harsh ones avoided within the interior -- all considerations within the single building design. Another advantage of the single building is that of greater efficiency in construction and cost, allowing for a greater palette of materials, a strong basis for the haptic sense and its relation to the meaning of home and of homeplace.

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star deck units

dining

kitchen

garden deck

community bldg.

Upper Floor Plan

D.01

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D.02

D.03


Diagramming moments in the day and seasons in the year, snapshots in time, inform design decisions of the larger site layout as well as the programmatic positioning within the built forms. D.01. Activities inform the layout and movement through the site allowing for waking up with the morning sun and creating a rhythm of the day that follows the light through the day and into the night. D.02. Not only does light inform the layout of the programmatic elements, but also the views from the pieces place living units toward the rising sun, shared program toward the city of Dayton and night program toward the stars. D.03. The living unit buildings not only block city light from the night sky, but also open up to the summer winds from the south west and additional units and forest block northern winter winds.

Sectional perspective

Seasonal changes throughout the year create a movement of people and also promote a focus toward nature within the site. D.04. A rooftop terrace above the lower level living units becomes activated by spring and summer garden planting by the residents, creating a natural focus as well as a communal outdoor gathering space that provides a view of the city of Dayton. D.05. Color-changing trees are placed within the upper internal courtyard, making and marking changes in seasonal tones with rich goldenrod and umber autumn leaves. D.06. Capping the year and the site is an evergreen forest, keeping color on the site even in the winter, the forest of pines not only allows for a green backdrop against often gray skies, but also keeps the winter northern winds from entering the site and allowing residents to continue their daily activities even throughout the colder months in the year.

Section through units

D.04

D.05

D.06

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meeting path

mail wall

library & activity kitchen laundry living & dining bath

bedroom sunroom

Movement throughout the site and the buildings are engaged through use of changing material as well as a programmatic story line. Upon waking, one places their feet on a soft cork floor, moving into the warm wooden hallway, allowing for footsteps to be heard among residents, and continuing into the shared program spaces is concrete with additive rugs and clad in weathering steel to not only give hierarchy to the space, but also to show signs of time and age, and after dinner the residents may watch the night sky from the star deck that holds the temperature of the day and releases the warmth from sun along with the ongoing fireplace to provide comfort when the night cools.

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exterior porch


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LIMITS OF THE HORIZON Floyd Bennett Field New York | 2014 Self Directed Design Project

“The Cosmos is a Magnet. Once you’ve been there, the only thing you can think about is how to get back” - Yuri Romaneko, Russian Cosmonaut Today, we have lost sight of the heavens and now discard and take for granted our greatest achievements as useless and unwanted. We have always defined ourselves by the ability to overcome the impossible. We count these moments, when we dared to aim higher, to break barriers, to reach for the stars, to make the unknown known as our greatest achievements. It took just sixty-six years from man not being able to fly to landing on the moon. Since then we have not been back, we have pulled back in. The Space Race of the 1960’s and 70’s lifted the human spirit. Space flight speaks to all of us. We are humans who hunger to explore and to understand. We are only bounded by the earth, and the ocean, and the sky looking to new horizons. The power of architecture lies in its ability to raise questions. Acknowledging that there are limits to what design can do, the focus of this investigation is to explore the impact of the natural and built environment to capture our imagination, to inspire, and to mystify. As a project that looks to architecture as an instrument for exploration, a center for joint NASA and civilian space exploration and repository for the Space Shuttle Enterprise is proposed for the design and site. It looks to reignite the aspirations of exploration where only few have been, but which many have come to understand in text, photographs, and films as the last and infinite frontier of man. In order to look forward beyond horizons, we also need to protect and preserve our spirited past, to free ourselves from preconceptions and release our imagination and aspirations.

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With NASA’s decommissioning of the Space Shuttle program in 2011, the United States manned missions to the cosmos were put in hiatus. Shuttles were “auctioned” off to museums spanning the corners of the United States to only collect dust. The hunger for manned missions to space is all but non-existent, NASA is constantly plagued with an ever dwindling budget. Now civilian entities, with reasons some scientific and others touristic, look to use NASA’s work with hopes to capture public support for the exploration of the heavens. The Space Shuttle Enterprise, one of six, was sold to the USS Intrepid Sea and Air Museum in New York City under the promise to preserve and display it as one of man’s proudest achievements. Today the Enterprise sits in a metal framed, plastic tent on the Intrepid’s flight deck, creating a lack luster setting and an eye sore [see figures adjacent]. The launch towers used to propel the shuttles and previous Apollo missions into space have also been labeled as unnecessary “junk”, with NASA looking for potential buyers. There is only one of the two launch towers remaining in the world, with the latter dismantled and sold for scrap [see figures adjacent]. These vessels once symbols of achievement and exploration have faded out of care and want. This project looks to preserve and reuse the Shuttle Enterprise and the last remaining launch towers to reignite our pioneering spirit towards the cosmos.

Institutes and Museums, armatures for collective societal experience and cultural expression, present new ways of interpreting the world. They contain knowledge, preserve information and transmit ideas; they stimulate curiosity, raise awareness and create opportunities for exchange. As instruments of education and social change, architecture has the potential to shape our understanding of ourselves and the world in which we live. As our global environment faces ever more critical challenges, a broader understanding of the interdependence of natural systems is becoming more essential to our survival and evolution. Museums dedicated to science play a key role in expanding our understanding of these complex systems.


The new operations and control facilities for joint civilian and NASA space flights at Floyd Bennett Field will create a distinct identity for the urban national park and Space Shuttle Enterprise, enhance the parks significant aviation history and institution’s prominence in New York City and enrich the city’s evolving cultural fabric. Designed to engage a broad audience, invigorate young minds, and inspire wonder and curiosity in the daily lives of its visitors and inhabitants, the architecture will cultivate a memorable experience that will persist in the minds of its participants and that will ultimately broaden individuals’ and society’s understanding of the exploration of space, as well as nature and science. This facility will inspire awareness of our pioneering spirit, while actively preserving through experience. The architecture will set new horizons and challenge spatial conceptions through an immersive and interactive environment that actively engages participants. Rejecting the notion of architecture as neutral background for operations and exhibits, the new building itself becomes an active tool for education and inspiration. By integrating architecture, nature, and technology, the building demonstrates scientific principles and stimulates curiosity in our natural surroundings and beyond the barriers of the horizon.


EXPLORATIONS


Shoe, Egg, & Paper In this assignment, we were to compose three objects; a shoe, an egg, and a piece of paper on a 18� square piece of Reeves paper. The detailed and textured shoe cradles the fragile egg, while the shoe laces transform into the malleable paper.

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Tugendhat House Montage In this assignment, we were to experiment and compose a montage, an homage to Mies van der Rohe’s many montages. On a palette of our choosing, this montage references the Miesian Grid and the many design details of the Tugendaht House. The cruciform column acts as the regulator of the grid, the x, y, and z axis from which the curved and partition walls are regulated. Mies van der Rohe, himself, looks upon his design, anchoring it with history and scale.

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Materials & Methods of Construction This class dealt with the properties of interior and exterior building materials and their relation to construction methods and detailing. As well as the theory of materials selection and application and the role materials and methods play in the design process. Our sketchbook was used extensively; building our knowledge of materials and construction. These sketches represent a few examples of initial investigations into the building systems of various buildings our class examined on site visits.

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Grand Tour of Europe & Study Abroad During the summer of 2010, I had the opportunity to backpack around all of Europe. Having already been around the world with the Navy, this experience was truly inspirational to my architectural knowledge. Through this Grand Tour I developed a greater interest in recording my experiences within my sketchbook, transforming the way I see and experience architecture. Once again in 2013 I had the opportunity to go back to study and live at the Bauhaus University in Germany. During the eight month journey I not only learned in depth the local and European architecture, but I gained a valuable experience of the culture and customs of living abroad. This experience once again transformed my views and understanding of architecture. I gained invaluable incites on life and of other cultures that will constantly influence my design career.

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Visual Thinking in Time-Based Digital Media In this assignment, we were to experiment with and compose a film that exploits the use of time-based media as a component to our final design project. This film, an opening title sequence, investigates the potential of the moving image as an architectural design tool. One that looks to establish the tone and visual medium of not only the projects thesis of exploration, but to address and focus the audience and their emotions.

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With thanks,


alexanderstinchcomb@gmail.com | 615.513.6309

Alexander Stinchcomb Undergraduate Portfolio  
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