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ARCHITECTURE A S WATER CONTAINER AMANDA AZZAHRA, MASTER OF DESIGN 2014


View of Narragansett Bay from Newport Armory


ARCHITECTURE A S WATER CONTAINER A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Master of Design in Interior Studies [Adaptive Reuse] in the Department of Interior Architecture of the Rhode Island School of Design By AMANDA AZZAHR A

Approved by Master’s Examination Committee:

Markus Berger, Assistant Professor, Head, Department of Interior Architecture, Thesis Chair

Jeffrey Katz Adjunct faculty, Department of Interior Architecture, Thesis Advisor

Jonathan Bell Adjunct faculty, Department of Interior Architecture, Thesis Advisor

Nick DePace Adjunct faculty, Department of Interior Architecture, Thesis Advisor


Thesis by Amanda Azzahra Published in 2014 Š 2014 Amanda Azzahra All right reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in a retrieval system or transmitted, in any for or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the written permission of Amanda Azzahra. Designed by Amanda Azzahra Printed in the United States of America. amandaazzahra.com 401-572-4732


Special thanks to all my professors and thesis advisors, my family and my friends.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENT


Nick Heywood Adjunct faculty, Department of Interior Architecture, Advisor, Writing and Thesis Book Ben Cornelius Adjunct faculty, Department of Interior Architecture, Advisor, Structural Engineering Stephen Turner Consultant, Stephen Turner Inc., Advisor, Energ y, Systems and Sustainability


TABLE OF CONTENTS


01

Abstract

03

Introduction

05

Site Analysis

19

Existing Structure

33

Concept

39

Program Development

45

Design Proposal

61

Bibliography

62

List of Illustrations


ABSTRACT

01


The ocean is dynamic and always in motion. By contrast, architecture is static and is moored to a given site. Architecture responds to water by adjusting to a certain form to protect the inhabitants inside. Water responds to its container by changing its shape to the container’s form. Does architecture shape water or does water shape architecture? As global sea level rises, historic architecture built to respond to the form of ocean in the past is at risk of inundation. Newport Armory is one such historic waterfront building that is affected by the new borders of the sea. Periodically, the area is overtaken by tidal surge and the coastline is constantly changing due to twice daily high tides and low tides. In response to the site, I am interested in creating space and an experience that embodies the contradiction between protection and containment by manipulating built forms and the dynamic of water. By bringing the tidal inside the building, the dialogue between sea and land create flexible spaces that adjust with the sea-level fluctuations. This containment will create protection from future storm surge damage by raising public awareness about the issue. 02


INTRODUCTION

03


Comparison of sea ice in 1980 and 2014. (source: The Cryosphere Today1)

Cities are built in close proximity with water, as it is essential to human life. It is often the first reason of founding a city as it is used for defense, trade, transportation, industry and recreation.1 These waterfront structures are at risk of global warming effects, rising sea level and more frequent storms. The earth has warmed by about 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit over the 150-year measurement and sea level has risen about 7 inches. Sea level is rising for two reasons: the warming of the ocean that is causing the ocean water to expand and the warming of ice that is adding volume to the ocean as it melts.2 This allows low lying lands to be flooded more frequently from coastal storms. The current 100-year flood water level could become the 30-year flood level after a 0.61 m (24 inches) rise and the 5-year flood level after a 1.22 m (48 inches) rise.3 A new way of adapting to the rising sea level is needed to protect waterfront infrastructures so that the infrastructures can extend their economic life span.

04


SITE ANALYSIS

05


Older picture of Newport Armory (source: Newport Waterfront’s: a brief history2)

Newport, a seaside town in Rhode Island has a long history with water. Its waterfront has been a mixture of commercial, industrial and residential space since 1639.4 Today, Newport is a tourist destination with main focus in its historic building and maritime activities. With the rising sea level, Newport’s waterfront buildings are increasingly at risk. In some areas of the northeast United States, storm surges associated with future hurricanes could be 2 to 4 feet higher than present conditions. In Rhode Island, an estimated 2,700 housing units are at within the elevation of 3.3 feet above sea level. These units and business properties in low-lying areas will likely be inundated permanently or during more frequent extreme high tides.5 Newport Armory is located in Lower Thames Street and is one of the examples of Newport’s historic waterfront buildings that are at risk of rising sea level. During the Hurricane Irene in 2011, its tidal surge flooded the harbor level of this building.6

06


Aerial view of Newport Armory from harbor side (source: Marinas3) 07


Aerial view of Newport Armory from land side (source: Marinas4) 08


Site Plan of Newport Armory 09


ADDRESS 365 Lower Thames Street, Newport Rhode Island 02840 BUILT 1894 OWNER City of Newport INITIAL USE Armory CURRENT USE Antique market, Maritime Center, Rhode Island Lighthouse Corporation ZONING Waterfront business District AREA Basement floor 8,800 sq ft Main floor 5,500 sq ft Upper floor 2,000 sq ft

Existing Facade of Newport Armory 10


Existing facade of Newport Armory 11


Existing interior of Newport Armory 12


0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0

mean sea level 1983 - 2010

-0.1 -0.2 -0.3 -0.4 -0.5 -0.6 -0.7 1930 13

1940

1950

1960

1970

1980

1990

2000

2010

Newport Historic Rising Sea-Level Diagram (Based on: Addressing Climate Change with the Ocean SAMP5)


Tidal surge from Huricanne Irene flooded the basement of Newport Armory (Source: YouTube6) 14


Newport Mean Higher High Water

15

Newport Mean Higher High Water + 1’ Sea Level Rise

Newport Mean Higher High Water + 3’ Sea Level Rise


Newport Mean Higher High Water + 1’ Sea Level Rise + 3’ Storm Surge

Newport Mean Higher High Water + 5’ Sea Level Rise

Hurricane 1938 Surge Height

(Based on: Mapping Assets Vulnerable to Sea Level Rise Newport, Rhode Island7) 16


MHH

MHH MHH +3’SLR +1’SLR + 3’ storm

MHH +1’SLR

MHH +5’SLR

Hurricane 1938 surge height

Projection of Sea Level Rise on Newport Armory. (Based on: Mapping Assets Vulnerable to Sea Level Rise Newport, Rhode Island8) 17

MHH + 1’ SLR


6 ft 5.1 ft

5 ft

highest high tide

4 ft 3 ft 2 ft 1 ft 0 Monthly Highest High Tide & Lowest Low Tide. (Based on: US Harbor Tide Charts9)

-1 ft

-0.8 ft a ‘13

m ‘13

j ‘13

j ‘13

a ‘13

s ‘13

o ‘13

n ‘13

d ‘13

j ‘14

f ‘14

j ‘14

lowest low tide 18


EXISTING STRUCTURES

19


Exploded existing structure 20


East Facade 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

21


North Facade 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

22


West Facade 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

23


South Facade 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

24


Short Section 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

25


Long Section 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

26


27


Harbor Level Floor Plan 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

28


29


Street Level Floor Plan 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

30


31


Upper Level Floor Plan 3/32” = 1’ - 0”

32


CONCEPT

33


Tidal force and storm surge have capabilities to destroy infrastructures. To build solid walls to protect the infrastructures from the rising sea level is not a viable option. The storms will be more frequent in the future and they will temporary or permanently flood the area behind the protected walls. To respond to such problem, a new solution is needed. In Newport Armory, the back wall is removed to let water flows inside the harbor level during the storms and future sea level rise. The programs in this level are flexible as it may get flooded periodically. New channels are built to force daily tides to flow through and create a flexible space that adjusts with the sea-level fluctuations. These channels walls not only act to bring tides to flow through the building, but also as buffers for future storm surge.

Concept Diagram 1 34


Operation Diagram 35


Low tide Low tide

High tide High tide

Spatial Configuration During High TIde and Low Tide 36


Break Water Diagram 37

coming waves

addition

existing


Break Water Diagram 38


PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT

39


“[The oyster] manages better than most creatures to combine business with pleasure.� --M. F. K. Fisher 7

Being located on the water, there is an opportunity in opening an oyster farm in Newport Armory. In proximity to the site, there are oyster farms around Narragansett Bay. Shellfishing and consumption of shellfish have been an important part of Rhode Island’s history. Dated back to the Colonial period, oysters were harvested for their meats and shells as raw material for lime manufactures.8 Oysters rely on tides to bring them food and filter the salt water to collect food.9 Each day, an oyster is able to filter and clean up to 50 gallons of salt water, taking up algae and removing dirt and nitrogen pollution.10 The programs for the Newport Armory Oyster Farm are a nursery and farm on the harbor level and an oyster market and restaurant on the street level. The proposed oyster farm will take advantage of sea water that penetrates into the building as well as tidal force to circulate the water. Oyster seeds will be purchased from local hatcheries and the Newport Armory Oyster Farm will produce oysters for the restaurant and market and spats for oyster gardening, a volunteer program where waterfront property owners maintain an oyster nursery at their dock to restore Narragansett Bay and Block Island oyster reefs. 40


OYSTER GARDENING PROGRAM HATCHERY

OYSTER SHELLS NURSERY

RAG & BAG CULTURE

MARKET

HARVESTING

SORTING

41

Oyster Life Cycle & Oyster Farming Diagram


“... as the old oystermen knew, there’s no better place to grow oysters than in Rhode Island.”

Rome Point

--Michael A. Rice 11 Newport Armory

Cedar Island

Matunuck

Ninigret East Bay Farm East Bay Oyster Co. Oyster Farms in Rhode Island 42


OYSTER FARM 43


RETAIL RESTAURANT

OYSTER NURSERY Program Diagram 44


DESIGN PROPOSAL

45


46


Long section perspective. Not to scale


49


Harbor Level Plan. Not to scale 50


51


Street Level Plan. Not to scale 52


53


Exterior rendering of facade during storm 54


Exterior Rendering 55


Interior rendering of Newport Armory Oyster Bar 56


Rendering of the floating platforms during high tide. 57


Rendering of the floating platforms during low tide. 58


Rendering of harbor level interior. 59


Rendering of entrance to the restaurant 60


BIBLIOGRAPHY

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.

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Zoe Ryan, Building with Water: Concepts, Typology, Design, (Basel: Birkhauser, 2010), 8. Barry Bergdoll, Rising Current: Project for New York’s Waterfront, (New York: Museum of Modern Art), 33. M.P. Cooper, M.D Beevers, and M. Oppenheimer, “The Potential Impacts of Sea Level Rise on Coastal Region of New Jersey,USA,” Climatic Change 90 (2008), 484, doi: 10.1007/s10584-008-9422-0. James C. Garman, Newport’s Waterfront: A Brief History, (2007) http://www.newportwaterfront.org/URI/ GarmanHistory.pdf Rhode Island Sea Grant, Sea Level Rise: Trends and Impacts, http://seagrant.gso.uri.edu/z_downloads/climate_SLR_factsheet2013.pdf. “Irene Flooding the Armory”, YouTube video, posted by “newportnowdotcom”, August 11, 2011, http:// www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpbvYOD6Tc4. M.F.K. Fisher, Consider the Oyster, (New York: North Point Press, 1988),5. Michael A. Rise, “Aquaculture in Rhode Island: 2006 Yearly report”A history of oyster aquaculture in Rhode Island, (2006), 29. “An Oyster’s Life” Oyster Stew, accessed May 9, 2014, http://www.wsg.washington.edu/oysterstew/cool/ oysterlife.html “Great Shellfish of the Bay” Chessapeake Bay Foundation, accessed May 9, 2014, http://www.cbf.org/ about-the-bay/more-than-just-the-bay/creatures-of-the-chesapeake/eastern-oyster Michael A. Rise, “Aquaculture in Rhode Island: 2006 Yearly report”A History of Oyster Aquaculture in Rhode Island, (2006), 31.


LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

8. 9.

“The Cryosphere Today” Compare Daily Sea Ice, accessed May 9, 2014, http://igloo.atmos.uiuc.edu/ cgi-bin/test/print.sh?fm=05&fd=01&fy=1980&sm=05&sd=01&sy=2014 James C. Garman, Newport’s Waterfront: a Brief History, (2007) http://www.newportwaterfront.org/URI/ GarmanHistory.pdf “Marinas” Newport Yatching Center, accessed May 9, 2014, https://marinas.com/view/marina/4019_ Newport_Yachting_Center_RI_United_States Ibid. Pam Rubinoff, Addressing Climate Change with the Ocean SAMP, http://seagrant.gso.uri.edu/oceansamp/pdf/ presentation/present_rubinoff_climatechng.pdf “Irene Flooding the Armory”, YouTube video, posted by “newportnowdotcom”, August 11, 2011, http:// www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpbvYOD6Tc4. University of Rhode Island Coastal Resource Center, RI Sea Grant, University of Rhode Island Environmental Data Center, Mapping Assets Vulnerable to Sea Level Rise Newport Rhode Island. Building Blocks for Climate Change Adaptation: Tools for Community Assessment and Planning (2013), http://seagrant.gso.uri.edu/z_downloads/climate_NewportSLR_Parcels-Buildings.pdf Ibid. “US Harbors” Newport Tides - March 2014, http://ri.usharbors.com/monthly-tides/Rhode%20Island/ Newport

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Architecture as Water Container  

Design Thesis Spring 2014 Rhode Island School of Design