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design samples caitlin mckee


Design Studio III - Assembly Housing 2007–2008 ACSA/AISC Student Design Competition - Chelsea, NY



Residences, live/work studios, shops, offices and public gathering areas interact with each other and The High Line creating a complex web of activity. The West facing public tower acts as a wind buffer for the South facing residential zone. Cloaked in a mesh of flag-like membranes composed of flexible piezoelectric material, the tower doubles as an energy generator harnessing the strong winds blowing in from the Hudson River. The offset stacking of the residential tower creates key overhangs on the South facade of the building while creating interesting public/private interactions on the North face. Various levels of the residential tower protrude into the west tower creating a dynamic inter connectivity of live/work spaces.


The Five Year House Structural Bamboo

by Through examination of bamboo’s structural properties and historical and modern applications, a kit of parts for a bamboo moment frame and lateral bracing system was designed. Bamboo has twice the compressive strength of concrete, about the same strength-to-weight ratio of steel in tension and in 3-6 years stalks can used as a structural building material. Combined with diverse growing climates, bamboo is excellent resource for housing in developing nations. The kit of parts is made up of pinned joints, moment joints, stabilizing clips, additional cladding clips and installation instructions. The joinery are simple pieces that could be made from local distributors. Since each kit has already been structurally tested it can be installed by any labor team with proper bamboo diameters and the steel joinery can be reassembled numerous times.


Design Studio II - The Teleplastic Condition Alley Installations - Manhattan, NY



Normalized Pollution data 2000-2007 2000


+1 +3 +2 +1 +4 -1





+2 +2 +1 +1 +3 0

+2 +3 +1 +2 +3 +1

+1 +1 +2 -1 +3 0

+2 +2 +2 0 +1 0

2005 +1 +3 +2 +1 +4 -1

2006 +2 +3 +1 +2 +3 +1

Angle 1/.4/0

Rate= 10 frames quicker

g 1/.0/0 Angle

Angle 1/.0/0 Rate= 20 frames quicker Rate= 10 frames q quicker

Angle 1/.2/0

2007 +1 +1 +2 -1 +3 0

Rate= 30 frames quicker

Angle 1/-.2 /0 Angle 1/-.4 /0

Rate= 40 frames quicker

Rate= 10 frames slower

Round ONE Particles move at given angle and speed If hit… grow 2 up/down 1 out If left alone… die

Through input of pollution data from local monitoring systems, structures are designed using Autodesk Maya 3D. Each installation is based on an eight year range of air pollution data. Each air pollution monitoring station’s data in the city will be generating a different installation. Each installation will be fabricated and embedded with Titanium dioxide (TiO2) forming an air replenishing skin. Each installation will be installed near it’s corresponding station. As air pollution is collected, the appearance of the installation, the data input of the monitoring system and the surrounding air quality of the structure is in a constant state of change. Signage explaining the different types air pollution, the levels that created these installations, and the way in which they capture pollution will be posted as a learning tool for the community.


designing for

[a case study in downtown westďŹ eld] Planning

Master’s Thesis - Designing for Others Downtown Master Plan - Westfield, MA



understanding the city

the multiple views How can a community engaged design process respond to the complex web of multiple realities in a city?


Through a collaboration between the City of Westfield, the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, University of Massachusetts - Amherst Center for Design Engagement and the Department of Geography and Regional Planning at Westfield State College, a Comprehensive Downtown Housing and Economic Plan was developed. My thesis partner and I used Westfield as a case study in researching, at it’s most basic, how to understand a city. As we researched, modified, and applied diverse theories and strategies; data from Westfield was gathered. Strategies ranging from GIS mapping to personal mapping, word games to photo-voice. Woven together, this data revealed the broad range of contradictions, multiplicity, and diversity that make up a city. Westfield, as all cities, is not one city but a multi-city as varied and changing as the perceptions of the people within it. Through this variety of lenses, the story of Westfield began to unfold.

I moved back here after college. My wife grew up 10 minutes from here, actually we met here at the bistro. Never thought I would move back, but this place can be great to raise kids.

down elm st. are major community concerns

13-16% of downtown residents are indo-european language speakers

7-11% of downtown housing units are vacant places of gathering night and day

down elm st. are major community concerns

downtown building uses


Master’s Thesis - Designing for Others Downtown Master Plan - Westfield, MA

the confider

word map

erception diagrams

in process

The point is, our students are ready to move downtown If we don’t have anything here for the students forget it. we have always been trying to put something together and bring business downtown, but there is no one here, so our thought is to bring the students here.

It’s a gem having the college in town

The college can be our anchor

There is a lack of communication between the college and town, partially because of a lessening newspaper presence

The only thing that you hear is that the students wil come down here, get drunk, & create chaos.

People say horrible things. The college sure, it is a small little city and there are people who misbehave

The police department is totally against the students coming down, and they run this town

New neighborhood advisory committee, educating students about how to be a good community member If the college students come down, you have to amp up the police presence

Owner occupied homes keep the student in check College campus dorms are pretty loud, and when they open the window you can hear it forever.

College kids don’t spend money, but college professors do, youth brings people

College students are an asset, certainly. Do we know where the students spend their money? They go back home and to the pizza shops and the pubs

This area used to be the italian neighborhood.

There are mixed reviews of the college students coming …they wil trash the town.

This building burned to the ground in ‘32, used to be a beautiful brick building. Westfield used to have the best resturaunts, here there was a great Italian diner.

When I was 13, this corner used to have a famous deli called Tim’s, had the best subs.

erception diagrams

multiple conversations

in progress

This area used to be the polish neighborhood. Love this porch!

They took out the parking lot here!

understanding the city


There used to be a great park here!

This area used to be the polish neighborhood.

This building burned to the ground in ‘32, used to be a beautiful brick building. “I am strongly opposed to the Westfield State College students coming downtown. I think they are going to make a mess of the place.”

This area used to be the Irish neighborhood.

erception diagrams


in progress

varied consensus


Through an intimate understanding of the complex dynamics of the city, the project aimed to strenghten the connections within the community and develop spatial practices that go beyond typical consensus. This story of Westfield, created by mapping exercises, focus groups, stakeholder interviews, etc. was presented back to the community. Perceptions about the city were addressed through bold public installations helping to open the communities eyes to key issues. This heightened awareness enlivened the presentations, conversations and participation during the multiple public workshops. Through these workshops and an intensive design process, proposals for key areas of downtown were presented to the community along with an interactive time line of short term and long term goals.



thematic: lack of recreational activities for general public intervention: outdoor multi-functional area [playground, sitting, ornamental]


thematic: poor esthetic quality intervention: ornamental landscaping


thematic: relationship between westfield state college and community intervention: venue for performances


thematic: lack of city pride intervention: memory walk

Master’s Thesis - Designing for Others Downtown Master Plan - Westfield, MA


thematic: lack of recreational activities for general public intervention: performance space



one year plan


five year plan



Great River Bridge Project


Town Green Project Improvement Parking Garage

eff ec


ct /

t / as sess


as se ss


t/ ass ess


sse s


Downtown Development and Economic Plan for Small Businesses


effe ct /

e ass

Traffic Regulations Revision

Domus [NGO] and Lutheran Social Services Partnership


ct / effe


Zoning Code Revision

WSC and City Housing Partnership

e ass

Art Installation Project Westfield Billboard Project


effe ct

Westfiled Storefront Windows Project

as se s

ct / effe


Traffic/Parking Signage

eff ec

Columbia Greenway Rail to Trail Conversion

ass ess

Inter-modal Center Westfield State College Student Housing Plan and Arts District

effe ct /

ss se as


ass ess

ec eff

Elm Street Housing Project


ec t/

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Not all of the stories can be told, not all of the statistics revealed, but a multiple projection can be portrayed, “through a method of collage that rearranges the spatial narratives and makes dominant the ordinary stories of city life.” - Tamayo Brillembourg, Informal City


Master’s Thesis - Designing for Others Downtown Master Plan - Westfield, MA

Place Of Places: The Contemporary City Cannot Continue To Be Assimilated As A Single Ideal Place - To Be Finished Or Rebuilt - Nor As A Unique Or Possible Formal Model, But Rather It Should Be Considered As Decomposed And Mongrel, Dynamical And Definitely Unfinished Multi-Space Made Of Interactive Linked Coexistances And Evolutions. In The Same Way That We Refer To A Plural Society, We Should Likewise Speak Of A Multiple City: A Multi-City - Manuel Gausa, The Metapolis Dictionary Of Advanced Architecture

he re

her i nte rna l

ces fluen l in rna xte


The Latina Empowerment Journey


ass p om

her p ast


daily context


external influences

internal compass

Latina Moms become empowered by gaining control over their lives; in their relationships, in their households, and their own self-esteem. We call it a “journey” because like all human processes, it’s a non-linear one.

daily context

For those born in the US, external influences on her empowerment journey begin at a very young age; for those born outside the US those influences often begin before she leaves her home country. During the empowerment process, external influences -new data inputs -- are run through her own internal compass … which is informed largely by her past.

Web Design

Graphics created for Salted Stone, Inc. Kraft Foods / Teleris Telepresence




WATCH > Choose from a list of informative videos demostrating Teleris products

Customize your telepresence solution

LEARN > Frost & Sullivan predicts industry will grow... rtne Mar arke rated is aass ... nerr 20 2008 cope iris Gart Ga 08 M kets tsco pe rat ed T Tel elir



Contact us Chat instantlyy with a repr p esentative

Home - Why Choose Teliris - Our Telepresence Systems - About Us - Site Map

Kraft Food is beginning to market to Latina women and provided large quantities of information about that demographic. This site filtered and condensed the information into an easy to follow web guide for their in-house marketing team to use. Teleris Telepresence is video conferencing that allows a person to feel as if they are in the same room as the person(s) they are communicating with. They are looking for a new site that incorporates video that walks a user through the site. The above home page shows part way through the opening video. As you click on the site the telepresence photograph gets merged with first an image of the world and then the global connections possible with Teleris.


Celestia - A children’s story

“Come here my boy, and sit beside me. I want to tell you a story.”…..The boys eyes grew large, never had Grandpa taken so long, or been so mysterious about telling a story. “Why can’t anyone else tell it?” he asks. “Because it is a story about myself, about my travelings... “The island you were born on was founded by a group of travelers seeking religiousfreedom, known as the Celestians. Settling far up the mountain, they lived for many years unbeknownst to the rest of the world. But as the world grew, more and more people came to the island to live. The Celestians got worried that their freedom would be once again at risk and moved to the highest point on the mountain, building great walls and gates to keep everyone out.”

During an architecture studio in Vicenza, Italy we created a city plan from random and abstract shapes. Inspired by the novels Invisible Cities and Einstein’s Dreams I created the island of Celestia. The Celestians had pilgrimaged to the island in search of religious freedom. They were worshippers of the stars and planets and sought out this island for it’s high peaks. The topography of the island segregated certain groups created an even stronger caste system than had been present in their homeland. The mountain island was broken up into levels. The holy were at the top, then the wealthy, the merchants, and finally the Lowlanders, the laborers and poorest on the island. The story begins with the Grandfather telling his son about life as a Lowlander and his chance visit to the holy level. The images are mixed media and illustrate every level of the city.



Oil on Board


a/b. Series “Glorifying the Mundane”. 3’x5’ oil paintings on board. c. Clothes drying in Venice, Italy. 2’6” x 4’ acrylic painting on canvas.


design samples  

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