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ECOLOGICAL

the contemporary high rise: an

reevaluation


© 2014 Camden Wade ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


“ Architecture is a hazardous mixture of omnipotence and impotence. Ostensibly involved in

Shaping the

world, for their thoughts to be mobilized architects depend on the

Provacations

of others...Architecture is by definition a

Chaotic Adventure .�

- Rem Koolhaas


Thesis

By Camden Wade

5th Year Undergraduate Department of Architecture Newschool of Architecture & Design 2013/2014 Academic Year

A thesis presented to the undergraduate faculty of the Newschool of Architecture & Design In partial fullfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Architecture

This thesis is an investigation of a current issue within the field of architecture and urban planning that I feel is relevant to the profession. All speculations within this document are based on ontological assumptions with research backing claims in order to ensure that the accuracy and authenticity of this investigation is as high as possible. Any concerns or issues with these speculations are encouraged in order to better my research and ultimately my design solution.


Abstract Dense urban environments are an experience in this life that are unlike any other. The typically constant vibrancy combined with the massive collection of buildings creates a unique and distinct urban character for each and every city. The ways in which cities are designed results in an urban experience that varies greatly from one to another due to the native characteristics each possesses. Although each city is unique in its own right, one key component remains the same; the public realm and the private developments have always been approached as separate entities. Why has this urban demarcation of public versus private resulted in an architectural approach that includes primarily either one or the other? Why has the public realm been doomed to the streets segregated from the buildings that make up the city in which they call home? High rise buildings are infamous for this contextual design flaw and this thesis explores how both realms can coexist through “collective design.�


Approval A thesis presented to the undergraduate faculty of the Newschool of Architecture & Design

Approved By: ____________________________________________________________________ Undergraduate Chair: Leonard Zegarski Date

____________________________________________________________________ Studio Instructor: Luisa Schultz Date

____________________________________________________________________ Peer Reviewer: Leigh Pfeiffer Date


“ It’s lonely at the top if you Forget all the People you met along the way and fail to acknowledge their Contributions to your success.

- Harvey Mackay


Acknowledge I would not have produced this thesis without the dedication, love, and support that people have showed me throughout the years.

I would like to give a thank you to the countless teachers, mentors, and counselors that have helped me along the way throughout my academic career. Without all of your help I would not be the person I am today. Shout outs to my classmates, friends, and most importantly parents Pam, Jay, and Cathy and godfather Eric for your selfless support because I would not be where I am today without you all being there for me.


Modernism No More Precedents Given Precedence What is a Hybrid? How Do They Operate?

The Hunt:Research

Thesis Standpoint High Rises and the City Why No Adaptation? Collective Design a Must

The Angle:Thesis

Introduction The Urban Migration Evolution of Downtowns History of Skyscrapers Architects & the High Rise

Foreplay

44 46 64 66

30 36 38 40

16 18 22 24 26

Where’s 12 28 ? 42


Form Generation The Hybrid Components Architectural Illustrations Back Matter

The Urban Infiltration

Humanizing the High Rise Vernacular Topologies The Urban Stratification The Urban Unification Conceptual Process

142 156 188 222

110 112 116 118 124

What’s the Big Idea?

80 82 86 92 94 100

108

Fragmented Development Cars Reign Supreme Lack of Zoning Regulation Houston and Suburbia Downtown Analysis Tunnel Loop Analysis

76

Houston, We Have a Problem

010 011

140


FOREPLAY


Conceptual Sketch


014 015


Current Mixed-Use

Proposed Hybrid

INTROVERTED

Program Relationships

Intro

EXTROVERTED

Most Mixed-Use Projects Consist of a Primary and Secondary Program Where Both Operate as Separate, Introverted Entities

Program Relationships

With Numerous Public/Private Program Uses Existing in Close Proximity, Programs Become More Permeable and Interact With Each Other

Capitalist Based

SELF

Architectural Approach High Rise Architecture is Famous for its Autonomous, Individual Approach to Their Design as If They Are the Only Buliding in the City

Architects and Developers Design Their High Rises as Individuals, But They Are a Part of a Much Larger Urban Context Which Needs to Be Addressed Just as Importantly as the Building Itself

Thesis Problem

What is a For almost half of a century, American society has turned its back on the city in search of our constitutional Building? rights for our pursuit of happiness. Not only did this “American Dream” lead us to the suburbs where our personal lives would exist separated far from our business lives, but it also led our country into pursuing an urban ideology that we never considered would be one that came with an expiration date. Fast forward decades later and our nation’s citizens are now returning back into its

HYBRID

urban cores. According to James Goettsch (2012), the term urbanism nowadays is synonymous with the high rise and since our cities are growing exponentially, the future of architecture lies with this building typology. With the birth of the modernist architectural movement, the high rise was able to reach unprecedented new heights which allowed for a newfound level of density amongst our cities. Although these modern high rises


016 017

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TransAmerica Building, San Francisco: Taken by Author

clad in glass and steel exist in abundance in our cities, they still pose a problem as to how they relate to the contextual urbanity that surrounds them (Bharne, 2011). Architecture is greatly in tune with our capitalist economy and much of the problems we face within this typology today is a direct result of this correlation between our privately funded projects interacting with the public realm in which they are a part of and need to integrate into. With millions of square feet being added to a city’s urban environment with each constructed building, these projects contribute large amounts of program to a city with many of them not including functions in which the public can interact with. It is this public interaction with architecture that seems to be one of the key missing links wihin our downtown environments leaving the citizens banished out to the streets with the vehicles. This large gap between the public realm and privately funded architecture is one that greatly impacts our urban realms across the nation and a re-approach to this design issue is fundamental to ensure and nuture the growth of our nation’s urban environments. As a result, this thesis proposes to investigate how these massive structures can be reevaluated to better foster a vibrant and contemporary urban lifestyle for the citizens of the cities in which they represent while also representing the city in which they reside in a relevant manner.


Current

POPULATION

rd

Most Populated Country in the World

1 Birth Every

Seconds 1 Death Every

Seconds 1 International Migrant Every

Seconds Net Gain 1 Person Every

Seconds

Population

DENSITY

#3 Chicago urban core (pop: 9,504,753)

Seattle

of the US Population Lives in a Metropolitan Area

#1 New York City urban core (pop: 19,015,900) #4 Philadelphia urban core (pop: 6,086,538)

Cleveland

Salt Lake City

Denver

Phoenix

#2 Los Angeles urban core (pop: 12,923,500)

Unlike many of the other developing nations around the globe, the United States continues to expand in population. Since the majority of our country is vast prarie lands with dramatically fluctuating temperatures and more extreme living conditions, the density of our large cities continue to grow due to the more desireable location in which they are in where existing infrastructure allows for the ease to do so.

Miami Houston #5 Dallas-Fort Worth urban core (pop: 5,819,500)

Tampa

0

1 10 100 1k 10k 100k


Estimated

POPULATION

018 019

in 2050

121 38%

?

Growth in Population and Public Infrastructural Needs

5 438,000,000 82% Estimated

DENSITY Seattle

in 2050

80%

Salt Lake City

Million More Projected American Citizens

1 Out of Every

People Will Be an Immigrant

+ 4 Million

#3 Chicago urban core (pop: 13,140,000)

of the US Population Continues to Live in a Metropolitan Area

of the Nation’s Growth Will be From Immigrants and Their US Born Children

+ 7 Million

+ 2.7 Million

#1 New York City urban core (pop: 26,280,000)

#4 Philadelphia urban core (pop: 8,760,000)

Cleveland

Denver

Phoenix

#2 Los Angeles urban core (pop: 17,520,000)

+ 4.5 Million This estimation in which our national population increases by thirty eight percent by 2050 is based on analyzed data trends. It also shows what would happen to our nation’s cities if eighty percent of our society continues to live in urban cores as they are predicted to do so. As a result, the needs of our currently strained cities are only predicted to get worse in the upcoming years with issues requiring action.

Miami Houston #5 Dallas-Fort Worth urban core (pop: 7,884,000)

Tampa

+ 2 Million

0

1 10 100 1k 10k 100k

Population Per Square Mile


AN CONDITION URBAN CONDITION

URBAN CONDITION

PRIVATE

Current

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

Current

PUBLIC

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

The Current Urban Philosophy Most Cities Adhere to by New Urbanists Focuses PrimarilyUrban on the The Current Philosophy Public’s Most Cities Adhere to by New Urbanists Focuses Primarily on the Public’s

STREETSCAPE STREETSCAPE Experience

The Current Urban Philosophy Most Cities Adhere to by New Experience Urbanists Focuses Primarily on the Public’s

PRIVATE

PUBLIC PUBLIC PRIVATE

PRIVATE

STREETSCAPE PRIVATE

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

The current relationship between the urban public realm and the private architectural occurs Therealm Current Urban Philosophy primarily on the ground level Adhere by Most Cities to by New clearly separatingUrbanists both from each Primarily on the Focuses other. This can only function properly Public’s for so long before an increase in population and lifestyle force our cities to address this by beginning Experience to think about a holistic approach where both scales are considered within a design.

PUBLI


GROUND LEVEL GROUND LEVEL

of Public Programs and Ac

In 2050, Will the Be Enough for the Public?

020 021

of Public Programs and Activities of Land to Use to Do So

In 2050, Will the

GROUND LEVEL

Be Enough for the Public?

PRIVATE

of Land to Use to Do So

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

Be Enough for the Public?

PUBLIC

of Public Programs and A

PRIVATE

PUBLI PUBLIC

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

in Order to Enhance Both Realms Through an Integrated Approach

PRIVATE ATE

Contemporary Design Needs to Bridge this Architectural and UrbanDesign Needs to Contemporary Bridge this Architectural and Urban

DISCONNECT DISCONNECT

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

DISCONNECT

of Land to Use to Do So

PRIVATE

PRIVATE ATE

of Public Programs and Activities of Public Programs and Activities Contemporary Design Needs to Bridge this Architectural and Urban of Land to Use to Do So of Land to Use to Do So of Public Programs and Activities

PRIVATE

of Land to Use to Do So

PUBLI

in Order to Enhance Both Realms Through an Integrated Approach in Order to Enhance Both Realms Contemporary Design Needs to Through an Integrated Approach

PUBLIC

Bridge this Architectural and Urban


Since the beginning of America, our nation’s citizens lived and worked in the urban environments that we constructed. The main reason as to why this has been the case for centuries is because America’s downtowns have been the central hub for our needs. These lifestyle necessities range from the economical and commerce, all the way down to the entertainment and arts. However, American society truly embraced the urban lifestyle after the industrial revolution when new construction technologies allowed for the modern high rise to be born (Forbes, 2011). The density that came hand in hand with these downtowns caused Americans to be fascinated by this new urban lifestyle creating an environment that was greatly sought after and embraced by society. A century after life blossomed in the cities, this American urbanity began to decline after World War II. When the US military’s draft uprooted most American families by sending their young men and husbands to war, the need for housing in the preceding years dropped significantly due to

Downtown Chicago circa 1900

Downtown

the increased amount of soldiers fighting abroad. When these veterans arrived back home after duty, a tremendous need for new and quick housing led to the growth of suburbs where land was cheap and plentiful rather than the cities where housing would have taken longer to construct newer, larger buildings (Forbes, 2011). For decades, American families lived peacefully out in the suburban outskirts in blissful ignorance of


how they were structuring their lives around an unsustainable lifestyle. It was not until after this realization that Americans began to comprehend that it was our responsibility to preserve our planet for future generations to enjoy. Steps needed to be taken in order for our society to build itself upon a sustainable lifestyle and this proved attainable by our populations once again moving back into the urban environments where existing infrastructure and walkability will function more realistically to reduce our dependence on vehicles and ultimately fossil fuels (Forbes, 2011). According to the United Nations, it is predicted that over 60 percent of the world will live in urban environments by 2030 (United Nations, 2002). It is through this urbanization where cities are beginning to adapt new business models where a large increase in their capacity for population densification is a much needed approach in order to house a dramatic increase for

the needs of these people. Now since cities only have so much capacity for infrastructure and land use horizontally, the only viable solution to address this urban condition is for our cities to increase the demand for building vertically (Ali et al., 2008). Since this shift is taking place across the globe, a new breed of urban issues and design considerations are required for our downtowns’ redevelopments in order to build our projects upon a foundation that will allow for long term urban prosperity. As a result, when we have dense congregations of people living and working in close proximity of each other, high rises have, “both a physical and social impact on their urban environments, [and] their location and design must assure that the impact not be negative” (Ali et al., 2008). Now before I explore the problems that high rises are experiencing in our current urban environments, a brief explanation of the history of the skyscraper is essential because knowledge of where they’ve been in the past is fundamental before I can propose where it needs to be in the future.

Downtown Chicago, 1907

022 023


the Flatiron Building, 1903

Although this architectural approach is one that is nothing new to cities across the world with high rises and skyscrapers having existed in our society for almost a century, a brief historical recap of this typology will provide insight into the ways in which design philosophies have been successful and flawed over the years. Chicago, Illinois was ground zero for vibrant urban life back in the 1830s with increasing population creating a desperate need for urban density. Due to the fact that it was the first structure of its kind to use steel in the frame, the Home Insurance Building

Skyscraper the Home Insurance Building, 1885

Thesis

built in 1885 standing only ten stories tall became known as the first “skyscraper� of its kind (Schleier, 1986). During this time, New York City was also becoming one the United States’ most prominent metropolises with construction barely keeping up with demand. Built in 1903, the Flatiron Building was revolutionary due to its tapering building footprint to roughly six feet, six inches in length. This twenty three story tall feat in engineering proved


the Seagram Building, 1958

the Downtown Athletic Club, 1930

024 025

the first modern zoning restrictions on skyscrapers in Manhattan (White, 2010). It was this project that caused cities to begin to realize architecture can affect the urban environment for its citizens. The Athletic Club(1930) was one of the pioneers in the hybrid building typology when it was first opened to the public and housed numerous programmatic functions from sports areas, a bowling alley, mini golf course, a gym, restaurants, and a hotel. This project led by example that a hybrid of functions within a single building could be a vibrant “city within a city� type project (Fernandez et al., 2011). Completed in 1958, the Seagram Building in New York City was the first modernist skyscraper designed by Mies van der Rohe. This international style was influential with its use of steel, glass, and reinforced concrete where ornamentation was stripped away to streamline the functionality of a design and represents many of the modernist skyscrapers today (Powell, 1999). With this it allowed for the exterior of a buiding to not bear structural loads which allowed for floor to ceililng glazing on the exterior.

the Equitable Building, 1915

that engineering technologies allowed for more flexibility of form than originally thought (Terranova, 2003). The Equitable Building also located in New York City was built in 1915 and at the time, it was the largest office building in the world with 1.2 million square feet of space. Due to the fact that this thirty eight story project had no height setbacks and sunlight was being restricted from the streets, it was the project that caused


The fact that our cities consist of hundreds or even thousands of these high rises would lead us to the assumption that architects have been at the forefront of designing these massive structures and shaping our cities. Unfortunately reality paints the picture that it is actually quite the opposite. Now many architectural theorists and urbanists have opinions as to why this is the case with these projects, but I speculate that the issue lies within the identity that this typology is considered by society and its designers. According to the authors of the Urban Handbook, the problem lies within how our society views these projects because they are currently seen as a potential threat to the city because they endanger the diversity of both the architectural and social realms of a city rather than a fundamental necessity to urban density (Firley and Gumble, 2011). As a result of these negative connotations associated with this typology, architects and designers in the past fifteen years have become skeptical of this large scale thinking and have focused their efforts on

Chinese Development

Architects

more manageable, minute tasks. Projects that take only a few years to design and construct tend to be more of interest to our community rather than high rises that take sometimes decades to see a design manifestation. Since this is the case, it has resulted in our cities consisting of poorly designed high rises that lack visionary ideologies beyond just the individual project itself. Winy Maas speculates the reason is because the innovative architects


Linked Hybrid, Steven Holl Architects

the Hearst Tower, Foster & Partners

001 027 026 002

sooner that we come to this realization the better. These global observations should cause us to come to our senses and return back to this big project and big idea thinking. Architects need to stand tall and fight back for this new responsibility because whether we like it or not, it is our obligation to society to address this urban disconnection that occurs from our buildings. If this change in thinking within our design community does not take place sometime soon, the future of our cities could be jeopardized due to the fact that this innovative and holistic thinking from the large to the small scale is not incorporated into these projects. It is frightening to think about how grim the future of our urban environments could be if this continues because, “Without a larger directive, there can be no intelligent city design, there can be no good urbanism� (Maas, 2009). The time is now for us to act in order to ensure that the future of our cities, our buildings, and most importantly our citizens are ones that are beneficial to our lives and future generations rather than detrimental.

Chinese Community

have left these large scale projects to do their own smaller feats leaving the buildings that have the most impact on a city in the hands of the inexperienced (Maas, 2009). The fault of this issue lies within our design community and the fact that the problem stems from the mindset of this generation’s designers. This typology and the large scaled projects that come with the density are only going to become more common in our society and the


THE ANGLE :THESIS


030 031

Thesis Position Capitalism is one of the fundamental principles on which our nation’s economic system has been grounded upon since its genesis. Not only has this system resulted in our country obtaining some of the highest wealth across the globe due to the possibilities for extreme financial success within our free market, but it has also been the primary component as to why our country is in its current condition of urban disarray. With developments in our cities being entirely funded by private corporations or investors, it results in an urban system in which our city blocks exist entirely for the purpose of those individuals’ or corporations’ maximizing their return on profit. Not only does this type of economic approach to architecture provide an autonomous approach to an entity that belongs to a much larger collective, but it also causes this typology to be much more self-involved in the design process. In turn, this leads to a disconnect between the urban(public) and architectural(private) realms.


032 033

Topic This thesis is exploring how the building typology of high rises has interacted with the cities in which they belong to in order to gain a better understanding of the relationships that the two have generated between each other. With the architecture itself being comprised mainly of a private developer or group of developers whose main concern is maximizing their own profit, these projects end up being very individually minded in the way that their own project’s needs and requirements take precedence over the surrounding city’s wants and needs. This thesis proposes to address this relationship where the current norm of rather having to design one or the other(public/urban or private/ architectural) is questioned to produce a project in which both realms are mutally benefitted by an architectural response that is comprised of both.


034 035

Thesis This thesis is an ecological re-evaluation of the modern high rise to address the disconnect that exists between the urban(public)/architectural(private) realms.


Shanghai Downtown Core

After this lineage of skyscrapers and varying degrees of architectural design and construction that they embodied, in the 1980s new discussions began to occur surrounding the designs of skyscrapers. Urban planners began to explore and analyze the conditions of cities in search of the possible reasons as to why the majority of its citizens abandoned them for the suburbs. It was only after this quest for the culprit that they discovered the answer lied within these high rises. A conclusion that there, “has been an evident neglect of the human factors in urban design at the expense of

the City

Beijing Cityscape

Thesis

livability and quality of life” caused designers to reevaluate how these projects functioned within a city (Ali et al., 2008). The thought as to why these projects were so isolated from their surrounding urban environment caused designers to challenge this typology and question why this was the case. Robert Powell discusses this change in thinking beautifully when he states, “Since height was no longer considered to be a problem, designers focused more


036 037

Aquo quat unturit aces inullacerro te perupta speditaerore prae nihillaces acerspiet asimillabor molupid ebiscienis voluptatium facium esequiam dolecuste imaximi nitatem intiore hentium a et is acimoluptaes es cusae. Berrovid et unt ratia conetur iaspicae simus, et fugit, sum as ex est, corernam quae aut earum repero ventis posaeri cor mos sanis doluptatis earum quasita tionsecabo. Nam ullorer orerferis dolo ditem restrum rerum, ide sit atur? Nate sum eost, ulpa que inulpa volupiet volorio. Poribus ilitend eliquiant lamenihil ipid eum hit, is delis as alignie nihicia turiber oribus, voluptaquid mo quaes inci nonseque consedigenis dolo to molendae perestectio. Obitiae rerum et lab ipiscium fuga. Lum re pe quos doluptas sin cum facipsam faccati con ratur, nostem hicid quibus re suntus ex eicium imagnimus comnistrunt eaquodi ut qui dem dus, imus seceptae venia volut estorem quid ma doluptate de non re porum fuga. Nem aut eum expelia quia aut est quodi oditiis dolupiet verit, am, nobist ad ute nonsequam re re volumquatur? Fugitas voluptatati utem ipsam quossequiae re

8 Spruce Street, Lower Manhattan: Taken by Author

on the link between skyscrapers and the urban landscape, in order to make the buildings part of the environment” (Powell, 1999). Since this was a legitimate concern for cities and urban planners, architects all over the world began to attempt to address this fundamental problem within the skyscraper typology. Gone are the days when the frustrated architect is able to sit in his office and draw pretty pictures of his project with no consideration for the surrounding environment. If history has taught us anything, it is that architectural design is a dynamic theoretical approach to the needs of an ever changing society and what may be effective in one era definitely will not be as successful in the next. As a result, our cities are currently inhabited by, “Many contemporary or modern skyscrapers [that] are part and parcel of the same bad strategies that emptied out downtowns and created bad pedestrian environments” and we are at a pivotal point in history as to how we react to this condition (Halbur, Tim and Negrete, Victor et al., 2011). This critical issue causes this designer to raise the question, “How can we solve these design problems when all we are doing is proposing the same solution that caused those issues originally to arise? Architecture and urbanity are both crucial components that are synonomous with each other and good design requires for both to be taken into consideration for the betterment of both parties.


No Adaptation Thesis 1903s Approach

to High Rise Ecology

?

2013s Approach

Through the Modernist Movement Buildings Focused on the Bare Necessities of its Programmatic Elements and Little More

to High Rise Ecology Today’s Approach is Similar With More Sustainable Features Being Added on, But the Building’s Approach to Ecology Between Itself and the City Remains the Same

Ecological Issues

Cities today are part and parcel a result of design strategies that were implemented decades ago that were proven flawed. Even though these design issues have been unveiled, many designs currently try to resolve urban issues that exist because of this condition by approaching it the same way. Our urban environments are extremely dynamic entities that consist of a delicate balance of public and private uses and a reevaluation is crucial to ensure a prosperous

future. Winy Maas discusses this beautifully when he states, “The urban environment is fundamentally different than it ever has been before, but we are still trying to physically define it in the same way” (Maas, 2009). Not only does this approach not address the current issues that occur within our cities between existing high rises and the urban environment, but these issues are only increasing in number with each passing project that continues


Downtown Chicago: Taken by Author

Downtown San Diego: Taken by Author

001 039 038 002

architectural object of the high rise is approached because it can no longer be only viewed as an autonomous, isolated entity within a larger urban context. The primary reason as to why this shift in thinking should be the case is because it is entirely a part of the environment that it exists within and should respond to it as such (Moneo, 1978). This is significant because it essentially means that architecture needs to begin to consider the needs and aspirations of the city that it is bound by more by thinking collectively rather than only considering the needs and wants of either realm individually. Even though this re-thinking of the way we approach development would be more difficult initially, the benefits to our society at every scale would be almost immediately witnessed. To approach this issue, the first step is that, “the old definitions must be modified to accommodate an idea of type that can incorporate even the present state� (Moneo, 1978). It is through this modification of old definitions that a new theoretical framework is born to meet the needs of the 21st century city.

Hancock Building, Boston: Taken by Author

embodying those ideals. Although this is no easy feat, architecture has not adapted to better suit our lifestyle changes that have occurred over the past decades within the needs and wants of our contemporary society. Since the design and construction of the very first high rise back in the 1900’s, the ways in which people, both public and private users, interact with them has not changed whatsoever. This comes down to how the


“ Collective Current

CAPITALIST

” Proposed

COLLECTIVE

Design

Driven Design Wealthy Developers Require Maximum Square Footage for Private/Leasable Space to Increase Profits While Giving Little to No Program for the Public/Small Business Owners

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Could We Design a High Rise That Gives Less Square Footage Towards Private/Single Developers’ Program and More for the Public/Small Business Owners?

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Economical Issues

Current

Proposed When it comes down to what current trend of high rise programs exact area my thesis is going to is to limit those uses to as few as focus on to address this disconnect possible. Even though this makes Programmatic Programmatic Design between our buildingsDesign and their it simpler from a design and cities, the exploration begins at the development standpoint, it creates root of the problem itself: how does a programmattic monotony that Modern Design Planning for even the public urban realm interact with makes that project’s success Norms Require Tenants Before That Allow Construction Allows the private architecturalBuildings realm? The more dependant on the fluctuating for Maximum Architects to Flexibilityfrom of the the root of this interaction stems market success. Rem Koolhaas Engage the Interiors to Ensure During the economical realm of architecture explains as to why this Program has Process risen as Many Different Design and Programs Could Result in a More and that is, why do people interact to be such an issue within our Inhabit Post Efficient Building with buildings? The use ofConstruction the building cities today when he states, “The is what draws people to it and the permanence of even the most

GENERIC

?

SPECIFIED


realize this situation where currently the modern skyscraper is grounded in the private realm and that there is a need for it being re-evaluated from its interaction with the public realm (Fernandez, 2008). By approaching this typology from this perspective these projects them become a “city within a building” where urban design and planning strategies can actually apply to a project due to the complex interaction of programmatic elements within it. This economical approach in turn would not only benefit the project itself and aid its success, but also the success of the city in which it resides.

San Francisco: Taken By Author

frivolous item of architecture and the instability of the metropolis are incompatible” (Koolhaas, 1995). A crucial way in which this instability could be more dampened by a project is through the introduction of a multitude of developers bringing different programs. This would be beneficial to both the urban and architectural realms in two key ways that high rises rarely achieve. The first factor is that the huge financial burden of a high rise building would be lifted and distributed among more developers funding it. This would in turn allow for a more economically resilient building because it would not become vacant when a single business or corporation goes bankrupt. Secondly, this economical approach also provides the urban community with a diversity of uses within a single project encouraging the people’s activity and also ensuring that the project will be a contributing member to the local urban community. Architects now

Fifth Avenue, Manhattan: Taken by Author

040 041


THE HUNT: RESEARCH


Follows

FUNCTION

- Louis Sullivan (Father of Modernism)

Viable

“ FORM


Current

Proposed

COLLECTIVE

CAPITALIST

Design

Driven Design Wealthy Developers Require Maximum Square Footage for Private/Leasable Space to Increase Profits While Giving Little to No Program for the Public/Small Business Owners

Obselescence

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Current

Proposed

SPECIFIED

GENERIC

Programmatic Design

Programmatic Design

Modern Design Norms Require Buildings That Allow for Maximum Flexibility of the Interiors to Ensure as Many Different Programs Could Inhabit Post Construction

Modernist vs. Contemporary Diagram

A CITY WITHIN

Could We Design a High Rise That Gives Less Square Footage Towards Private/Single Developers’ Program and More for the Public/Small Business Owners?

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

?

044 045

Planning for Tenants Before Construction Allows Architects to Engage the Program During the Design Process and Result in a More Efficient Building

URBAN

The famous quote of “Form follows funtion” Louis Sullivan a by Building is a statement that embodies the modernist movement of architecture that originated around the 1920s. It was through this international style of architecture where ornamentation was stripped from buildings and simplicity of form was brought to the forefront of architectural design to the point where buildings essentially only appeared as a result of what

people were doing inside of them. Not only did this approach architecture and thetoHybrid result in a more simplistic architectural form, but its approach to the design of the program or use inside the building, Because of Its Scale, Urban was just as basic as well. Since this Planning Strategies was the case, a generic viewpoint to Should Be Applied to a Hybrid Due to the programmatic elements thatMixing a the Various Uses Within a building is made up of wasof taken in Building That Would Normally Occur order to provide the bare essentials Within the City that they would need. The flexibility of the program to be able to adapt to multiple configurations within the same


typology was the primary concern in order to ensure that the building would be able to be configured to whatever the tenants needs would be post construction. This architectural movement however fails at a very crucial factor when it comes to the built environment: change. Steven Holl discusses this crucial issue when he states, “Urban densities and evolving building techniques have affected the mixing of functions, piling one atop another, defying critics who contend

CURRENT

Urban Program Market Needs

that a building should look like what it is” (Fernandez, 2013). It is through this ability of architecture to change to the future needs of an urban environment that will ensure its future success as well as that of the city in which it is a part of. The capitalist free market is a very elusive and difficult system to try and predict its outcomes, but a developmental model that begins to produce a safety net that adds a sort of protection between

FUTURE ?

Urban Program Market Needs Due to the Constant Fluctuation of Market Needs within a City, It is Difficult to Determine the Progammatic Needs our Cities Will Have in the Future

Known Programmatic Needs of a City’s Current Condition are Required for Architecture to Meet Them

Economic Flexibility Diagram

architecture and the economy that fills and investors to re-think their NOISY to its leases is one that is much needed. business models when it comes WIth cities that failed because of architectural development. SOCIALIZING SERENE this free market existing today such Although it is difficult to try and CONTEMPLATIVE VIBRANT as Detroit, Michagan, the design address theCOLLABORATING needs and wants of our community’s eyes have opened to a society fifty yearsCONNECTIVITY down the line with INTRAPERSONAL legitmate developmental flaw. What a project that we are designing happens when a city whose entire today, an architectural movement PERMEABLE PAUSE program and economy is dedicated that begins to attempt to provide REFLECTIVE INTERACTION LOITERING to an industryNETWORKING that no longer exists or some fore-thought as to how a high SEMI-PUBLIC SEGMENTED ACTIVE goes bankrupt? This is definitely the rise will be used in the future by its COMMUICATION MEANDERING CLOISTERED case with Detroit and the automobile inhabitants is one in which a more CIRCULATION INTROVERTED industry and it is causing urban planners more properous future for our urban RELAXATION

RESERVED

TRANSPARENT

INDIVIDUAL

OPEN

COMPARTMENTALIZED

E

CLOSED OFF RELAXING

BREAK

COMMUNITY

DYNAMIC

EXTROVERTED


the development of our designs. Our cities are dynamic organisms and the programs of our projects that cater to the needs of those cities should be able to respond to those fluctuating needs of the market that they are driven by. Architecture truly is a creature of our capitalist economy and at the end of the day its sole purpose to exist is to serve the needs of the community and the individuals that make it up. As a result, architecture has the requirement to take this need of programmatic adaptation as well as diversity into consideration for the future benefit our nation’s cities. Modernist Manhattan High Rise: Taken by Author

environment will be achieved. With the future program that our cities will be needing being a topic that is shrouded in mystery, a building typology that allows for multiple program uses within a single project will allow for the diversity and flexibility that the contemporary urban environment requires. Gone are the days when a single project has a single use because this approach to architecture results in a city that becomes less friendly to the pedestrian experience and as a result follows a more unsustainable urban model. The mantra of form follows function can no longer apply to where the current status of our profession is because how can the form of a project follow the function of its spaces when in the future, who knows what program will be consisting within that space. The field of architecture in the past was not as insightful when it came to the future uses of their spaces and the time is now for our nation’s designers to begin this thought process early on in

Downtown Detroit: Taken by Author

046 047


Study :

Chinese Community

Musuem Plaza is a revolutionary project that challenges conventional high rise development. The project began with a project seeking to implement a large art gallery and ended with a mixed use project attached with program specifically used to fund this main art attraction. This project is significant due to the fact that it consisted of large amounts of both public and private program balanced in a unique hybrid execution that I will explain more in depth in

the upcoming chapters. It is this delicate balance between the two that can make or break a hybrid building and this development pushes the norms within this typology. Due to site constraints, the public realm is elevated to its “island� 24 stories above where art permeates into all aspects of both the public and private realms truly acting as the heart of this development physically, financially, and ecologically.


048 049

REX Architects

A

Site Plan

MUSEUM PLAZA

C

A Musuem Plaza is a revolutionary project that challenges conventional developments th project seeking to implement a large art gallery and ended with a mixed use projec program specifically used to fund this attraction. This project is significant for my thesi that this project consisted of large amounts of both public and private program. C balance between the two that can make or break a hybrid building and this develop current norms within this typology. Due to site constraints, the public realm is elevated stories above grade where art permeates into all aspects of both the public and pr acting as the heart of this development physically, financially, and ecologically.

Background

Project Description

Size: 354,000 Sq. Ft. Lot Area: 1,530,000 Sq. Ft. Design Parti: Programmatic Rationalization Spatial Organization: Public Realm Elevated Key Site Factors: Located Within River’s Flood Plain Vicinity Map

Ohio River

MUSEUM PLAZA

Lousiville

Vicinity Map

Location: Louisville, Kentucky Site Plan Latitude: 38 North Climate: Warm, Temperate Year Designed: 2005


Public Art Gallery

t. 00 Sq. Ft.

matic zation ion: alm Elevated to ous Programs

Parking

27.3%

800 spaces

Within Ohio 0 Year Flood

Living

27.4%

419,220 sq. ft.

Form Generator

Office

17.6%

269,280 sq. ft.

Hotel

16.9%

258,570 sq. ft. Form Generator

Culture

PRIVATE

Public Gallery Plan

Public Plan

Section C

PRIVATE

Program Concept

Form Generator

Section C-C

Program Concept

Museum Plaza is Considered a Graft

10.8%

165,240 sq. ft.

PUBL


Condos

Art Museum

Hotel

10.8%

165,240 10.8% sq. ft.

Program Concept

PRIVATE PRIVATE

Urban Relationships

Various Programmatic Elements Grounded Together Through Elevated Public Realm

PRIVATE

GROUND PLANE

PRIVATE

PUBLIC

PRIVATE

A C

PRIVATE

A

PRIVATE

C

PRIVATE

Form Generator

Private Program Implemented as Podium for Urban Realm Above

Section C

GROUND PLANE Urban Relationships

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

PUBLIC

Various Programmatic Elements Grounded Public Plan Through Together Elevated Public Realm Museum Plaza is Considered a Graft Hybrid Due to the Fact that Programmatic Elements are Each a Distinct Element within the Overall Form

Hybrid Classification

Private Program Implemented as Podium for Urban Realm Above

Public vs. Private Analysis

16.9%

U of L

16.9%

258,570 17.6% sq. ft.

Culture

Art Museum

Condos

419,220 sq. ft.

Size: 354,000 Sq. Ft. Lot Area: 1,530,000 Sq. Ft. Office Design Parti: Programmatic Rationalization 269,280 sq. ft. Spatial Organization: Hotel Public Realm Elevated to Link Various Programs 258,570 sq. ft. Key Site Factors: Located Within Ohio Culture River’s 100 Year Flood Plain 165,240 sq. ft.

U of L

roject Description Hotel

Office

269,28027.4% sq. ft.

Hotel

17.6%

Latitude: 38 North Climate: Warm, Temperate Living Year Designed: 2005

050 051

Program Analysis

Condos

27.3%

Office800 spaces Location: Louisville, Kentucky

ackground

Condos

Parking

Con

419,220 sq. ft.

Office

27.4%


Study :

Chinese Community

The Essence Financial Building is OMA’s second high rise in Shenzhen with another design competition win under their belt. This project is innovative most notably as a result of its edge condition structural core. Rather than designing the conventional central cored high rise, OMA located this on the periphery in order to maximize unobstucted floor plans. This freedom of flexibility will allow numerous office configurations to help meet the demands of a contemporary

office lifestyle. In order to reduce afternoon solar heat gain which would normally be glass, this core was located on the western facade. The facade of this project also reduces glazing square footage and heat gain while providing dynamic articulation. A private terrace is located on the 24th floor which allows for spectacular views of Shenzhen while also giving the project a unique architectural character.


ESSENCE FINANCIAL BUILDING

O.M.A.

052 053

Project Location

By Camden Wade

The Essence Financial Building is OMA’s second high rise in Shenzhen with another desig win under their belt. This project is innovative most notably as a result of its edge condition Rather than designing the conventional central cored high rise, OMA located this on th order to maximize unobstucted floor plans that will allow numerous more flexible office co help meet the demands of a contemporary office lifestyle. This core was located on the w in order to reduce unwanted solar gain in the afternoons on the building’s glazing as we thermal mass that will radiate the afternoon heat back into the interiors overnight to re needs for the morning conditions. A private employee terrace is located on the 24th floo for spectacular views of Shenzhen while also giving the project a unique architectural ch

Background

Location: Shenzhen, China Latitude: 22 North Climate: Humid, Subtropic Year Designed: 2006

ESSENCE FINANCIAL BUILDING

Project Description

Dashen Bay Dadong Bay

Vicinity Map

Shenzhen

Egong Bay

Vicinity Map

Size: 1,000,000 Sq. Ft. Lot Area: Unknown Design Parti: Structural Reconfiguration Spatial Organization: Core Shift to Exterior to Maximize Plan Key Site Factors: Overlooks Shenzhen Business District


Program Distribution

Optimise

Elevated Private Terrace

uctural configuration anization: re Shift to Exterior to ximize Unobstructed Plan ctors: erlooks Shenzhen Golf b Within Shenzhen iness District

Private Viewing Deck

Form Generator

Conventional Centra

Program Distribution

Optimise

Private Viewing Deck

Form Generator

Building Section

Implemented Periphe

Structural System

Form Generator

Building Section


054 055

Clubhouse

Offices

3% 25%

29,000 sq. ft.

Essence Office

ouse

258,000 sq. ft.

Leisure

21,520 sq. ft.

2%

Mintaian Office

12%

Offices

20%

Monolith Hybrid

Classification Due to Stacking of Program within Form

121,500 sq. ft.

Implemented Peripheral Core

Canteen

2% 9% 87,000 sq. ft. re

Lobby & Min taia OCommercial ffice n s Leisu

Offices

Canteen

2% 9% 87,000 sq. ft.

Parking

Lobby & Commercial

Structural System

Parking Structural System

Self Shading Facade Reduces Solar Gain on Southern Facade

n

Hybrid Classification

Self Shading Facade Reduces Solar Gain on Southern Facade

Maxi on No to Ma

The Size of Window Openings Increases Down the Building in Proportion to the Decrease in Solar South Penetration Elevation

North Elevation

PUBLIC

GROUND PLANE

Urban Relationships

25%

250,000 Lobby sq. ft.

Facade Analysis

GROUND PLANE

Urban Relationships

tee

The Size of Window Openings Increases Down the Building in Proportion to the Decrease in Solar Penetration

PRIVATE

PUBLIC

Can

Maximized Glazing on Nothern Facade to Maximize Diffused Light

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

PRIVATE Public vs. Private Analysis

25%

250,000 sq. ft.

20%

h Club 205,500 sq. ft.

17,500 sq. ft.

205,500 sq. ft.

17,500 sq. ft.

Program Analysis

Conventional Central Core

Implemented Peripheral Core

12%

121,500 sq. ft.

Essence Offices

Structural Analysis

Mintaian Office

South Elevation


Study :

The Landmark Towers designed by Buro Ole Scheeren are a mixed use combination of programs located in the Kuala Lumpur City Center District in Malaysia. This project consists of three primary programs of premium offices, high end residential units, and a luxury hotel. With the difference in the storefront materiality on the ground levels, this design feature not only invites the public into the high rise, but it also projects its vibrant urban activity back into the city itself allowing an

effect that I have labeled “Urban Transparency.” It is through this visual connection that the building is able to display and invite the urban interaction that it requires. Also a hybrid, this high rise has a formular expression similar to that of Museum Plaza’s. This project is successful how it relates to its urban context while also providing ample square footage for private developments to generate a profit and validate its construction.


056 057

Site Location

TOWER

The Landmark Towers designed by Buro Ole Scheeren are a mixed use combination of pro in the Kuala Lumpur City Center District in Malaysia. This project standing at 880 feet tall c primary programs of premium offices, high end residential units, and a luxury hotel. The sig project to my thesis lies within how this project address the urban realm at the ground difference in the storefront materiality on the ground levels, this design feature not only inv into the high rise, but it also projects its vibrant urban activity back into the city itself allow I have labeled “Urban Transparency.” This project is one of the most successful projects I’v when it comes to how it relates to its urban context through encouraging interaction w while also providing ample square footage for private developments to generate a profi

Background

Straits of Malacca

Project Description

Size: 1,750,000 Sq. Ft. Lot Area: 68,300 Sq. Ft. Design Parti: Urban Transparency Spatial Organization: Programmatic Stacking Key Site Factors: Within City Center District

LANDMARK TOWER

South China Sea

Kuala Lumpur

Indonesia

Vicinity Map

Location: Malaysia Latitude: 3 North Climate: Tropical Year Designed: 2010


Ground Level Rendering

“ V H R Diffe Pre P

Sto

Gro Fa Sho R

Urban Transparency

Building Elevation

Podium Section

Podium Concept Diagram

dium Section

Section


Urban Transparency

6%

Residential

6%

“Sky Level” 60,500 Houses sq. ft. Various Uses for the Hotel, Offices, and Residents with the Residential Difference in Materiality Presenting the Unique sq. ft. Program Behind242,000 it

60,500 sq. ft.

Residential

30%

30%

222,500 sq. ft.

Luxury Hotel

23%

222,500 sq. ft.

Luxury Hotel 222,500 sq. ft.

23%

Offices

23%

Luxury Hotel 222,500 sq. ft.

Offices

20%

193,600 sq.

193,600 sq. ft.

106,500 sq. ft.

for Commercial Ground Floor Breaks the Parking Public Commercial Public Commercial Facade of the Project 96,800 sq. ft. 106,500 sq. ft. 106,500 sq. ft. Storefront Glazing used Showing Vibrant Public for Commercial Realm Within These Ground Floor Parking Breaks the Floors to the Parking City Program

20%

193,600 sq. ft.

Storefront Glazing used for Commercial Public Commercial Ground Floor Breaks the 106,500 sq. ft. Urban Transparency Facade of the Project Facade of the Project 96,800 sq. ft. Showing Vibrant Public Showing Vibrant Public Parking Realm Within These Realm Within These 96,800 sq. ft. Floors to the City Floors to the City Program

11% 10% Urban Transparency

11% 10%

3

242,000 sq.

Public Comm

Offices

20% 20% Storefront Glazing used

193,600 sq. ft.

Offices

30%

242,000 sq. ft.

Luxury Hotel

242,000 sq. ft.

6%

6

Residential

058 059

“Sky Level” Houses Various Uses for the Hotel, Offices, and Residents with the Difference in Materiality Private Commercial Presenting the Unique 60,500 sq. ft. Program Behind it

sparency

60,500 sq. ft.

Program Analysis

“Sky Level” Houses Various Uses for the Hotel, Offices, and Residents with the Difference in Materiality Presenting the Unique Private Commercial Private Commercial Program Behind it

11% 96,800 sq. ft. 10%

1

Program

rban Relationships

PUBLIC GROUND PLANE

Section

Section

Urban Relationships

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

PUBLIC

Five Story Tall Vehicular Parking Garage lies at the Heart of Podium Urban Streetscape Experience is Brought into the Tower with Bars, Cafes, Retail, etc.

Public vs. Private Analysis

Urban Connection Diagram

Five Story Tall Vehicular Parking Garage lies at the Heart of Podium

PRIVATE

Urban Streetscape Experience is Brought into the Tower with Bars, Cafes, Retail, etc.

PRIVATE

PRIVATE Five Story Tall Vehicular Parking Garage lies at the Heart of Podium

PRIVATE

PRIVATE

Program

Five Story Tall Ve Parking Garage the Heart of Po Urban Streetscape Experience is Brought into the Tower with Bars, Cafes, Retail, etc.

PUBLIC

GROUND PLANEGROUND PLANE Urban Relationships Urban Relationships


Study :

The urban analysis that I chose to investigate for one of my case studies is within Manhattan Island. New York City is arguably one of the best cities in the nation as a result of its rich history and in an influential position when it comes to the creative arts and design. I truly enjoyed the experience of the dense urban lifestyle but I also felt like something was lacking when it came to the pedestrian experience. High rises cluttered the city’s grid for miles each providing its

own programmatic chemistry to the urban environment while little public space was given back to the pedestrians within the dense urban fabric outside of Central Park. Dense congregations of people littered the streets at every turn in an environment feeling similar to that of a rat in a maze. I investigated how this city operated from a public standpoint in order to better my understanding of why this feeling might be the case.


Located in the Heart of Manhattan Island

060 061

Vicinity Map

The urban analysis that I chose to investigate for one of my case studies is within Manhattan Island. New York City is arguably one of the best cities in the nation as a result of its rich history and influential position when it comes to the creative arts and design. The reason that I chose to study this city is because when I visited this massive architectural wonderland this summer, I truly enjoyed the experience of the dense urban lifestyle but I also felt like something was lacking when it came to the pedestrian experience. High rises cluttered the city’s grid for miles each providing its own programmatic chemistry to the urban environment while little public space was given back to the pedestrians within the dense urban fabric outside of Central Park. This caused me to investigate how this city operated from a public standpoint exploring why this might have been the case in order to draw conclusions from my observations.

New Jersey

MANHATTAN ISLAND

Queens

Vicinity Map

Location: NYC, New York Latitude: 40 North Climate: Humid, Continental Year Designed: 2010

Project Description

Size: 1/2 Mile x 2.5 Miles Lot Area: 843 Acres Design Parti: Urban Entanglement Spatial Organization: Sprawled Park Space Key Site Factors: Located In the Heart of Manhattan Island

Manhattan High Line Park: Taken By Author

Background


Central Park Edge Conditions

For my in whic private city. Su For my sidewa in whic block, private occurs city. S itsidewa lead in the block, massiv occurs public it lead heart in the o fascina massiv periphe public condit heart grid, a fascina the cit periph where condit other. grid, a the ci where other.

Central Park Edge Condition Central Park Edge Condition

PU PU

High Line Edge Conditions

PR PR

High Line Edge Condition

Concep


Public Space Metadiagram

062 063

For my analysis of Manhattan Island, the area in which I begin my study is the public and private relationships that occur within the city. Sure this experience occurs on every sidewalk that lines every street within every block, but I investigate how this interaction occurs at a much grander scale. As a result, it lead me to the world famous Central Park in the heart of the island. Not only does this massive expanse of public park enhance the public realm immensely, but since it is in the heart of the city it creates very unique and fascinating edge conditions around the periphery of this project. Since this edge condition is a rectilinear shape within the city grid, a very abrupt stop is created between the city and the park(private and public) where one essentially leaves one to enter the other.

Condition

ondition

PUBLIC

Realm

New York City is a very compl multi-faceted urban environment tha take decades to try and compreh Horizontal Expression complexities within an investigation. of my study was to notice the relat between the public and private ments located here on Manhattan order to get a better understanding way one of the most successful Am cities is organized. It is after this diagr Realm ic process where I can begin to und the minute relationships that some o scattered public venues may sha conclusion of this study has ended posing the question as to whether o more integrated approach of publ and plazas into the city grid might be successful execution of these space than quarantining each off from eac Conceptual Conclusion resulting in the citizen choosing either of a public space or a private with v

PRIVATE

Conceptual Conclusion

the area in which I study was the High Line linear park and Central Park. Although this experience occurs on every sidewalk that lines every street within every block, I investigated how this interaction occurs at a much grander scale in public parks. Because this expanse of the public realm supplies alot of public activities, its location in the center of the island creates very unique and fascinating edge conditions along the periphery. As a result, a very abrupt stop is created between the city and the park(private and public) where one essentially leaves one to enter the other.

Vertical Expression

Space Metadiagram For my analysis of Manhattan,


Capitalist Based

SELF

Architectural Approach High Rise Architecture is Famous for its Autonomous, Individual Approach to Their Design as If They Are the Only Buliding in the City

Hybrid

Architects and Developers Desig Their High Rises as Individuals, But They Are a Part of a Much Larger Urban Context Which Needs to B Addressed Just as Importantly as the Building Itself

...

What is a

HYBRID

Building?

The hybrid building is a typology that has existed since its introduction in the 1880s. Its genesis was a result of the metropolitan pressures of increasing prices of land values with the constraint of the urban grid providing strict guidelines for development (Fenton, 1985). With the horizontal development standards that had worked up until that point in time, a new approach to architecture was required and the result was by the urban fabric moving itself skyward. Buildings became

constructed higher than ever before which then began to result in a single use for buildings which was the current norm at the time. Not long thereafter, the realization came of that single programmattic use not being able to apply due to the massive scale of these projects. Multiple uses were then integrated into a single project which created a unique built environment that had not existed before. Years later, zoning laws began to be enacted


Tour Signal, Paris

Campus Center, Miami

064 001 065 002

activating the building, its individual uses, and the surrounding urban fabric” (Fernandez, 2008). Since this typology is so successful in these situations, more and more of these projects are beginning to be integrated into our nation’s urban fabric in order to bring our nation’s citizens back to their urban cores. This programmattic deficit was one of the original problems that drove Americans away from their urban cores and designers are beginning to become more aware of this key component. Programmattic assemblage has a couple of options in the hybrid where the juxtaposition of programmatic elements can be achieved either vertically through the superposition of functions on top of each or through the horizontal expansion of uses with the integration of multiple programs along the same floor as each other (Fernandez, 2011). Due to the fact that there are only a few ways in which the architect chooses to organize and relate these different uses together, hybrids typically fall into one of three categories as to how they can execute this.

De Rotterdam, Netherlands

which segregated the placement of various programmatic elements and the hybrid once again fell to the wayside. Fast forward to today and the segregationalist urban planning policies are being re-evaluated with a rekindled interest arising yet again towards the hybrid typology. Through its implementation of multiple uses both public and private, these projects are beginning to gain common recognition as a “way of


Proposed

SEGREGATED Current

SEGREGATED

Architectural Program Interaction

INTEGRATED

Proposed

Architectural Program Interaction

INTEGRATED

Architectural Program Interaction

Architectural Program Interaction Why Can’t

Program Be Reconsidered

Architectural Program in Today’s Society Has a Very Architectural 2-Dimensional Program in Today’s Approach to the Society Has a Very Way2-Dimensional in Which People Interact Approach to the Which WithWay theinBuildings

Why Can’t Where Interaction ProgramOccurs Be at a More Reconsidered 3-Dimensional Where Interaction Level to Occurs at a More Better Adapt to Individual 3-Dimensional Level to Programmatic Better Adapt toNeeds Individual Programmatic Needs

Kinds

?

Graft Hybrid

Graft Hybrid

Fabric Hybrid

Typologies Typologies

Each the Eachofof the Project’s Various Project’s Various Programmatic Programmatic Elements are ElementsWithin are Expressed Their Own Form Expressed Within That Attached to Theiris Own Form the Building

That is Attached to the Building

Monolith Hybrid

HYBRID HYBRID

Monolith Hybrid

People Interact With the Buildings

Fabric Hybrid

G

Current

Programmatic Programmatic Elements Are Elements Are Stacked Into a Stacked Into a Continuous Form Continuous Form Where Form Does Not RevealWhere Form Does Not Reveal Function

Function

Volumetric Infill of the City’s Gridded Fabric is Incorporated into the Programmatic Volumetric Infill of the City’sElements of the Project

Gridded Fabric is Incorporated into Categories theHybrid Programmatic Elements of the Project

Although the entire purpose of the hybrid is to break free from the shackles of the architectural typology, this architectural approach can be broken up into different categories based on their formular expression. When it comes to this architectural execution, there are numerous ways in which a multitude of various programs can be integrated together within a single project. It is through the acceptance or rejection of the functional expression of the

architecture that categorizes these hybrids into the three main types that currently exist within the architectural community. As mentioned earlier in this publication, the modernist manifesto comes back into the equation and can be chosen to be embraced through the visual expression of the program or ignored by the cloaking of them. The first kind of hybrid building that exists is known as the fabric hybrid. The fabric hybrid is


Monolith_Hancock Tower, Chicago: Taken by Author Graft_111 First Street, New Jersey

001 067 066 002

public and private uses is implemented which, in turn, creates a more dynamic urban experience throughout the entire building where users who would not normally interact mingle. Keeping on track with the rejection of the functional expression of architecture is the next category known as the monolith hybrid. The monolith is famous due to its monumental impact on the city due to its massive scale. These most commonly mimic the urban realm of a single block hidden behind their monotonous form. Through its efficiency in ability to accomodate the most diverse amount of functions, this category has displayed the greatest amount of versatility within the hybrid typology. With the last hybrid type comes the only category that embraces the functional expresion of modernism: the graft hybrid. The stacking and welding of various programmatic elements each unique in scale and footprint together creates this category. In both plan and section, the various functions can be easily determined due to the different proportions that each are made up of (Fenton, 1985).

Fabric_Scala Tower, Copenhagen

characterized by most importantly its rejection of the functional expression of architecture by masking its internal uses through the building’s architectural form (Fenton, 1985). This category is significant because due its integrated juxtaposition of program, it allows for the most innovative arrangements of program within the hybrid typology. This configuration category is distinct because a three dimensional interaction of various


Mixed

Hybrids

Current Mixed-Use

?

Proposed Hybrid

INTROVERTED

Program Relationships

Most Mixed-Use Projects Consist of a Primary and Secondary Program Where Both Operate as Separate, Introverted Entities

EXTROVERTED

Program Relationships

With Numerous Public/Private Program Uses Existing in Close Proximity, Programs Become More Permeable and Interact With Each Other

Mixed Use vs. Hybrid Diagram

Capitalist Based

SELF

Hybrid buildings, up until Joseph Fenton’s catalogue about the subject in 1985, have been Architectural Approach considered a part of the mixed-use High Rise Architecture is category. Consequently, Fenton Famous for its Autonomous, challenged this joint merging and Individual to Their argued that these buildingsApproach require Design as If They their own classification altogether. Are the Only in the City He argued that “there was Buliding a distinct difference between the hybrid building and mixed-use, in that the individual programs relate to one another and begin to share intensities” (Fernandez,

2008). This is significant because as the diagram above explains, mixed-use buildings approach the various programmatic elements as Architects and Developers Design separate entities and segregates Their High Rises as them from each other creatingIndividuals, But They Are a Part of introverted characteristics. This a Much Larger Context is far from the objective of the Urban Which Needs to Be Addressed Just as hybrid building because the entire Importantly as the Building Itself essence of the hybrid is to create an urban environment within a building due to the interactions between all the various programs.


but that they are together in a melting pot of programmatic functions. The reason as to why these hybrids are considered their own typology is due to this very fact that they go beyond the simple feat of various programs and begin to investigate how these differing programs in user classifications of public or private can find common grounds to function harmoniously. The success of the hybrid lies on how this conglomeration of relevant uses for the urban community as well as the private developers’ can interact with and compliment each other in a way that is mutually beneficial.

Collaborative Cloud, Berlin

When this introverted nature is introduced into a project, it breaks up the programs into isolated areas of the project severing any ties at all between the public and private. These interconnected elements stand individual in function, but are a part of a greater collective whole within the project itself and require a certain level of interaction between them to coexist efficiently. Fenton continues on to elaborate that, “hybrid buildings stand differentiated from other multiple function buildings by scale and form� (Fenton, 1985). The scale that he speaks of in this situation is that of the requirement of the hybrid buildings to follow the dimensions of the city block within the orthogonal grid. In essence this describes that these projects are only considered hybrids when are combined altogether within a single building on a single lot. Rather than being a collaboration of multiple buildings within a district, it requires that these uses not be segregated between each project individually

Manhattan Mixed-Use Streets: Taken by Author

068 069


$ $$ $$ $$ $$ $$ $$ $ $$ $$ $$ $$ $$ $$ $$ $$ $ $

$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $

Current Proposed

Proposed

GENERIC SPECIFIED

Programmatic Design Programmatic Design

gn

dern Design ms Require dings That Allow Maximum xibility of the eriors to Ensure Many Different grams Could abit Post nstruction

? City Within

SPECIFIED

Programmatic Design

Modern Design Norms Require for Planning Buildings That Before Allow Tenants for Maximum Construction Allows Flexibility of the Architects to Interiors to Ensure Engage the as Many Different Program During the Programs Could Design Inhabit Post Process and Result in a More Construction

Planning for Tenants Before Construction Allows Architects to Engage the Program During the Design Process and Result in a More Efficient Building

Efficient Building

A CITY WITHIN URBAN a Building

URBAN

and the Hybrid

Because of Its Scale, Urban Planning Strategies Should Be Applied to a Hybrid Due to the Various Mixing of Uses Within a Building That Would Normally Occur Within the City

and the Hybrid

Because of Its Scale, Urban Planning Strategies Should Be Applied to a Hybrid Due to the Various Mixing of Uses Within a Building That Would Normally Occur Within the City

Hybrid Urbanism

Due to the programmatic interactions of the hybrid typology, careful consideration should be taken with the design due to the fact that a mixing of program at this level would normally only occur at the street level within the urban environment. Since these programmatic elements would normally be much smaller in scale than those which would be occurring in separate buildings along the street level, a more fine tuned approach is needed to ensure the project’s

success. This approach to high rise architecture is so effective due to the fact that they, “include a wide range of functions to allow a certain level of self-sufficiency in response to a dislocated location” (Fernandez, 2008). Due to the fact that high rise projects these days are considered individually to begin with, hybrids capitalize on this approach by ensuring self-sustainability within the project rather than existing as an


PUBLIC/PRIVATE

Interaction Occurs Due to This Mixing of Program, Public and Private Interactions Occur Frequently Resulting in Similar Edge Conditions to That of a City

Program Edge Conditions Diagram

070 071

Vertical

Sparking theparasite on a a city. a new breed of ecology is brought architectural to the table where an interaction When this design methodology of users between the urban public is implemented into a project, it of Downtown Houston realm and the architectural private brings on issues and concerns that realm begins to have the possibility to your typical high rise would not coexist within the walls of what would require. Based off of their sheer normally be considered a privitized scale, these architectural design development. The borders between solutions superceded the realm of architecture and enter the realm of public and private which are normally black and white in our current society, urban planning (Fernandez, 2011). begin to become blurred and greyed Hybrid buildings are essentially in a unique environment where public urban planning under one roof because the usual edge conditions boulevards and parks can begin to be introduced and integrated into an of the public street realm meeting privitized architectural proposal. the private architectural object begin to occur in programmatic boundaries between these uses that occur elevated and within the project. Since these conditions are Programmed Building Programmed Building so unique to only the characteristics of this architectural typology, these various programmatic elements “feed on the meeting of the private Consists and public spheres” where theDowntown Proposing a Hybrid Primarily of Office Typology in and “intimacy of private life and theBuildings Downtown Will Activity Occurs Provide Uses For All During the Day But sociability of public life find anchors Hours of the Day After Work Day Activating the the City Shuts in development in the hybrid Hours Project Beyond Just Down the Work Day Hours buildings” (Fernandez, 2011). With this balancing act of user groups,

URBAN REVIVAL

Houston

?

Tour Signal, Paris

MULTIPLE

SINGLE


Sparking the

URBAN REVIVAL

of Downtown Houston

Houston

Revitalise

SINGLE

Programmed Building

?

MULTIPLE

Downtown Consists Primarily of Office Buildings and Activity Occurs During the Day But After Work Day Hours the City Shuts Down

Programmed Building

Proposing a Hybrid Typology in Downtown Will Provide Uses For All Hours of the Day Activating the Project Beyond Just the Work Day Hours

Hybrid Activity Diagram

With the American suburban movement that took place after World War II, many of our nation’s urban environments began to deteriorate when the mass movement of citizens occurred taking them out to the peripheries of our cities. When this mass exodus took place, the American downtown was left to the wayside leaving urban planners and architects scratching their heads trying to figure out ways how they could once again bring these citizens

back to the downtowns that their ancestors once thrived in. Many various approaches have been executed successfully in cities all across the country in their attempts to create social destinations for these people to congregate and interact and one of the more recent developments to rise to the occasion is the hybrid building typology. The way in which these projects are successful in doing so is through the permeability of these


072 073

“Defragging Houston” Urban Metamodel

projects with the public citizens. It is through this permeability that allows them to become more accessible from the city through public uses while the private programs allow the services of the project to extend the timetable of these buildings to twenty four hours a day of activity (Fernandez, 2011). Constant, twenty four hour activity is no new introduction to many urban environments nowadays, but when this commotion takes place entirely within a single building, impressions of what our society thought architecture could achieve will be forever changed. Where the hybrid typology becomes so unique in regard to its other high rise structures is that these projects which would normally be active at a single time of the day become social hubs of frequent activity. This is a result of the multitude of introduced programs which allow for it to be unrestricted from the typical typology shackles of being dominated by only public or private rhythyms. With these newfound possibilities of all around activity, the real design challenge stems from the designer’s, “talent to negotiate congestion, to stack complementary functions and to create connection versus segregation” (Fernandez, 2009). Within these large projects lies the true design challenge for the architect because the success or failure of this typology lies in the delicate balance of what, when, where, and why interaction does or does not occur inside the building.


Cross Pollination Current

Proposed

SEGREGATED

Architectural Program Interaction

INTEGRATED

Architectural Program Interaction Why Can’t Program Be Reconsidered Where Interaction Occurs at a More 3-Dimensional Level to Better Adapt to Individual Programmatic Needs

Architectural Program in Today’s Society Has a Very 2-Dimensional Approach to the Way in Which People Interact With the Buildings

Program Interaction Diagram

Graft Hybrid

Fabric Hybrid

Volumetric Infill of the City’s Gridded Fabric is Incorporated into the Programmatic Elements of the

element where there is potential Programmatic Elements Are for both planned and unplanned Each of the Stacked Into a Project’s Various activities for the inhabitants. Continuous Form Programmatic Where Form Does Elements are Through this integrated natureNot Reveal Expressed Within Function Their Own Form hybrid, this interaction of of the That is Attached to creates a hub of activity the programs Building within a city where architecture creates and encourages this trans-programmatic interaction of varying user groups. The hybrid is a building that takes advantage of its opportunity to make an impact on an environment by looking

Monolith Hybrid

HYBRID

The hybrid feeds on the meeting of the architectural and urban Typologies realms due to the interactions between the intimate and peaceful nature of the private programs and the vibrant, sociability of the public programs. These uses allow for the cross pollination of different programs in specific designated locations throughout the hybrid. This is significant because it validates that activity of the project will create an urban environment within an architectural


074 075

“Integrating Uses” Programmatic Metamodel

for, “unexpected, unpredictable, intimate relationships, encouraging coexistence and is conscious that unprogrammed solutions are the keys to its own future” (Fernandez, 2011). Although a hybrid building is a typology all of its own, Fenton describes how there are subcategories within it in regards to how the different programs relate to the others within the building. The first category known as the thematic combination, cultivates dependancy between the different programs by them all containing a common ground and singleness of function (Fenton, 1985). An example of this would be a court house being located near a city hall within a building where they would both cater to the same user category. Disparate program combinations are the contrary where completely different programs would exist within a building such as office spaces and a church. Since these uses do not directly cater to the same person within the project, they each rely on those user groups to specifically use them for that distinct purpose. “The mixing of uses in a hybrid building generates a potential which is transferred, as in a system of interconnected vessels, to those weaker activities so that all involved are benefitted” (Fernandez, 2011). An effective analogy to describe the programs of a hybrid building is similar to that of a sports team; each teammate plays an individual position in the game, but they all work together to achieve a common goal.


Houston

Downtown’s Lack of Density

Houston is a prime example of the typical American city. Lars Lerup, an urbanist and Houston native describes this condition when he states, “The city is a creature of the market, the same market that was invented to create an even playing field to remedy the vagaries of both social and economic justice”(Lerup, 2011). With development driven entirely by profitmaximizing developers with no formal zoning regulations to regulate the buildings’ size, uses, or environment, this

city center suits the perfect picture of an urban system that is entirely based on capitalistic development laws. With the quantity of land not being an issue for this city, urban sprawl has been a large factor in the planning of this area and it is a large result as to why the city is in the current state of extreme suburban sprawl that it is. The reason as to why this is the case is because the, “concentration on projects(subdivisions, malls, etc.)


and design. Councilwoman Eleanor Tinsley states this change in thinking from their organization when she states, “Our emphasis has changed. As our economy and population growth have slowed, we are concentrating more on the quality of life.” One of the main aspects in which Houston is focusing on their quality of life is through the development and encouragement of a more localized lifestyle. As a result of this shift in urban planning and thinking, the future of development in Houston is looking bright with sustainable urbanism finally in the crosshairs. Downtown Ground Level: Taken by Author

has led to a failure to engage the context of the entire region, best demonstrated by the sprawling of these same projects”(Lerup, 2011). With the inefficiency of the public transport that currently exists within the city as well as the low mixing of uses within the projects throughout the Downtown, it is evident that sustainability has not been on the forefront of this city’s mind(Firley and Gimbal, 2011). When this sustainable approach to urban planning and design is not applied to a city, it creates an urban environment that does not operate as efficiently and effectively for the people that inhabit it. This in turn only exacerbates the existing condition of urban disarray creating a vicious cycle where new development is continually being grounded upon shallow roots. After decades of the city following this unsustainable urban development problem, the city’s government is beginning to realize the error of their ways and are calling for a change to their urban planning

Downtown Houston: Taken by Author

076 077


Thesis Intervention

SITE

Texas Texas

Downtown Houston

Downtown Houston

Central Business District

Central Business District


078 079

Industrial Office Commerce Single Family Residence Multi Family Residence

Urban Land Uses

Urban Bayous & Green Spaces

10

45 59

Major Urban Roadways


Y A

PL

LIVE

W

OR

K

Fragmentation

Houston’s Programmatic Locations

Houston is the third largest so as to avoid potential conflicts Air Ozone city in the United States and yet has between incompatible uses(in the density of that similar to a city denser cities resolved by zoning) that has half of its population. What and simultaneously ignores the th is that this city has this translates into overall functioning of the city” Worst Air been designed and encouraged as (Lerup, 2011). The main issue with in the United States a pro-sprawl environment where the Houston is that the majority of the Due to Smog various uses that the Ranked average citizen jobs are located in the downtown Routinely Among the requires are fragmented and can be a core yet few to no people live Ozone Citiestwenty miles of where they great deal away from each other. ThisPolluted within in the U.S. condition is quite unique compared to are employed. Not only does this some other examples due to the fact nurture dependence on vehicles, that, “sprawl usurps the in-between but it also results in abnormally

8

POLLUTION MOST


080 081

Air Ozone

8

th

Sprawl Ozone Pollution

LIVE POLLUTION

Worst Air in the United States Due to Smog Routinely Ranked Among the Ozone Polluted Cities in the U.S.

MOST

high levels of air pollution. It is a result of this very sprawl that Houston is in the current state of urban fragmentation because of the sobering fact that for a city of its magnitude, there is very little to no urban presence or lasting vibrancy within its urban core. This fragmented condition is significant because the fault of this falls in the laps of designers and planners whose lack of vision and afterthought caused it to be so.

WORK

Downtown’s Separation: Taken by Author

LIVE


Automobile

Houston’s Intricate Interstate Network

With the fragmentation of programmattic development within the city of Houston, this leads to a lifestyle for the average citizen that depends heavily on the use of their vehicle to carry out their day-to-day activities. As a result, freeways and streets are only getting wider to try and keep up with the needs of so many commuters that constantly drive to where they need to go. Houston has some of the most strict parking regulations in the nation primarily due to the fact that

the use and dependance of the automobile has been nurtured since its development. “Here the road replaces the city, the house supplants the block, and a highly mobile community rather than a local pedestrian community is the norm” (Lerup, 2011). A fitting title could be “Houston: A City on the Move.” As a result of this heavy vehicular use by its citizens, Houston then begins to face an entirely new issue of where to keep these cars.


Downtown’s Private

TUNNEL SKYBRIDGE

The

DAILY

Private Tunnels For Workers Are 7 Miles Long and a Fragmented System Only Open During Business Hours Creating a Quasi-Public Realm

?

42 6,000

Average Downtown Worker Commutes

Private Skybridges Connect Various Buildings Within Districts Which Allow Business Workers to Circulate Above Grade off of the Street Level

Systems

Location of Activity Above and Below Grade Results in a Non-Existent Street Level Realm

?

Worker Commute Diagram

082 083

Miles To/From Work

Average Downtown Worker Spends $

Downtown’s Developers

SELF

Architectural Approach

a Year Commuting To/From Work

Due to No Formal Zoning Laws, Developers Have Essentially Built the Entire Downtown With Each Project Only Linking to Its Own Developer’s Buildings

With Multiple Developers all Building Projects, the Entire Downtown is Made Up of Fragmented Groups of Buildings Unconnected to the Majority of the City

LIVE

WORK

Strict

PARKING

City Code Requires

85% 15%

Than Residents

of Overall Parking is On-Street Spaces of Overall Parking is Above Grade Garages

Parking Infographics

>_

MORE PARKING


Pedestrian WIDE WIDE

Within Within thethe Downtown Downtown Core Core Wide Wide Streets Streets Discourage Discourage Walkability Walkability By By Making Making it Difficult it Difficult for Pedestrians for Pedestrians to to GetGet Anywhere Anywhere

100’ 100’

Vehicular Vehicular Streets Streets

On Grade On Grade Within Within Downtown Downtown

WALKABILITY WALKABILITY

For For Pedestrians Pedestrians inin the the City City

Pedestrian Walkability Diagram

When a city encourages the use of the automobile as much as this, it can lead to issues for the very people that they are trying to keep there. Because Houston is “predominantly motorized and individualized, pedestrian and public experience is limited The Theto interior spaces” and the vehicle dominates the majority of the urban public realm (Lerup, 2011). One of the significant ways that the Downtown does this through isWorker the Average Average Downtown Downtown Worker ample use of on grade surface parking Commutes Commutes

DAILY DAILY

42 42

lots throughout. Not only does this developmental approach result in a much less dense urban environment, but it also creates a city in which the walkability for the pedestrian is significantly elongated (Kunstler, 1994). When this occurs, the pedestrian experience is intruded by the vehicle to the point where people would much rather drive from one location to another within the Downtown city limits. This condition drastically affects

Miles Miles To/From To/From Work Work


the vibrancy of the city’s streetside public realm and only further promotes the lifestyle that is using the heavy vehicular use as a crutch. In addition to the use of vehicles encouraged by the development, Downtown Houston’s light rail line is pathetically integrated into the surrounding urban fabric also discouraging local citizens to even try and commute without owning a car. The pedestrian public realm is noticeably more vacant than one would expect from a typical city and when the work week ends, the city seems as if it were almost uninhabited by the countless citizens that abide around its fringes. When the vehicle is pushed to prominence within a city, the pedestrian experience begins to be compromised and a shifting in this design mindset is imperative to ensure that the Downtown will not become an automotive wasteland. If this developmental stategy continues, who knows where this vicious cycle will take the urban environment of the Downtown.

Lack of Street Storefront: Taken by Author Surface Parking Lots

084 085


Downtown’s Private

TUNNEL SKYBRIDGE

Private Tunnels For Workers Are 7 Miles Long and a Fragmented System Only Open During Business Hours Creating a Quasi-Public Realm

?

Systems

?

No Zoning

Private Skybridges Connect Various Buildings Within Districts Which Allow Business Workers to Circulate Above Grade off of the Street Level

Location of Activity Above and Below Grade Results in a Non-Existent Street Level Realm

Downtown’s Developers

SELF

Architectural Approach Due to No Formal Zoning Laws, Developers Have Essentially Built the Entire Downtown With Each Project Only Linking to Its Own Developer’s Buildings

Strict Downtown Houston is a very unique urban creature unlike any other in the United States at its scale. The reason as to why this outrageous accusation is the case is due to the fact that, “the separation of land uses is impelled by economic forces rather than mandatory zoning” (Lerup, 2011). Although this sounds like an impossible fact to occur within a city that is the third largest in our nation, this situation is a large reason as to why the Downtown core has turned out the way it has.

PARKING

>_

With Multiple Developers all Building Projects, the Entire Downtown is Made Up of Fragmented Groups of Buildings Unconnected to the Majority of the City

When an entire Downtown’s fate is left up to whatever the developer withCity theCode most money chooses to do Requires with it, the autonomous approach to privatized development only becomes worse than a typical Residents urban approach. TheThan urban realm becomes almost entirely an Parking afterthoughtof in Overall this situation and is On-Street Downtown Houston only further Spaces proves that this is and was the of Overall Parking case. Although no formal zoning laws are enacted and enforced is Above Grade Garages

MORE PARKING

85% 15%


TUNNEL SKYBRIDGE

Private Tunnels For Workers Are 7 Miles Long and a Fragmented System Only Open During Business Hours Creating a Quasi-Public Realm

?

byDowntown’s a larger government Developersauthority, the city has achieved a similar effect through its implementation of land useArchitectural regulations. Approach These land use regulations are significant for Due to No Formal the city because they essentially Zoning Laws, Developers Have are a privitized market response Essentially Built the Entire Downtown With Each Project for the municipality to try and Only Linking to Its Own Developer’s achieve the same thing. One of Buildings the main perks for these land use regulations and deed restrictions is that they allow for much more flexibility for the developers with rules and regulations that can be more adapted to the specific Strict environments in which they are in. In addition to this adaptation, these deed restrictions are also different than zoning laws because they have the ability for them to be changed over periods of time (Lewyn, 2005). With these lack of regulations being the case, in theory it would be possible for a petrochemical refinery to be located directly next to a housing development, and it is up to developers to consider whether or not that would be a

Private Skybridges Connect Various Buildings Within Districts Which Allow Business Workers to Circulate Above Grade off of the Street Level

Systems

Location of Activity Above and Below Grade Results in a Non-Existent Street Level Realm

?

Urban Pedestrian Stratification

086 087

Downtown’s Private

15%

SELF

>_

City Code Requires

MORE PARKING

85% 15%

Than Residents

of Overall Parking is On-Street Spaces St. Joseph Skywalks W. Dallas Tunnel

E. McKinney Tunnel W. Walker Tunnel

of Overall Parking is Above Grade Garages

Court Tunnels North Travis Tunnel N. Louisiana Tunnel Tunnel Loop S. Louisiana Tunnel

Underground Pedestrian Tunnel Network

PARKING

With Multiple Developers all Building Projects, the Entire Downtown is Made Up of Fragmented Groups of Buildings Unconnected to the Majority of the City


Undergound Tunnel Plaza: Taken By Author Underground Tunnel Programs: Taken By Author

financially responsible feat to attempt (Lerup, 2011). With these conditions taken into consideration, it creates an urban environment where little to no entity is regulating development with a collective vision of the city being considered. One of the results of such an issue is with the existence and expansion of the privatized tunnel and skybride networks. Since these privatized networks consisting of programs and uses that would typically exist on the street within the public realm, it creates a Downtown where, “class is literally inscribed in the towers, the street, and the tunnels below:

vertical integration with lateral separation� (Lerup, 2011). Because these networks of pedestrian traffic and circulation exist both above ground and below, the street level urban experience which is typically assumed to be bustling with activity, is robbed of this normality almost leaving an empty, ghost townlike perception. One of the main downsides of this urban model for development is that many of the amenities for the public realm of the city(which would normally be controlled and implemented by a government authority) are left to be funded and built by the private developers sector within their projects. This large reliance on the private sector for the development of public space and program causes the city to be almost entirely privatized within these areas that would typically be completely public. As a result, this ends up creating a city that essentially closes down after hours (Lewyn, 2005). When privately funded public space is created, a lack of


088 089

as a Result

280’ Small Grid is 65 Feet Shorter Than Other Downtown Lot Sizes in Most Cities Such as Los Angeles or Chicago

space devoted to the public realm twenty four hours a day exists and in reality, that isn’t public space at all. Privately owned public spaces are relatively new nuances to the urban environment and can be elusive because their effectiveness is still yet to be determined. They are unique primarily due to the fact that, “many spaces are nothing more than empty strips or expanses of untended surface, while others have been privatized by locked gates, missing amenities, and usurpation by adjacent commercial activities” (Kayden, 2000). According to Kayden’s analysis of New York City, over 41% of the 503 public spaces were of minimal effectiveness to the urban environment (Kayden, 2000). Is it time for a re-evaluation of these private-public spaces? Could there possibly be a new breed of entirely public space that begins to coexist within a privately funded architectural object? Although these types of private-public areas exist within Downtown Houston,

Houston’s Strong Economy Leads to a Need For Large Floor Plates in Order to Meet Programmatic Needs of Buildings Which Results in Entire Lots Being Developed (90%+) With Little to no Public Space on Ground Level

very few of them actually are located on the street level and are permeable to the public. Lot coverage by these buildings is high where a large percentage, if not all, of the buildings’ footprints take up the majority of their lots. There are many contributing factors to this such as small lot sizes and a booming economy, but the main negative aspect of these abnormally high lot coverages is that the pedestrian realm at the street level is doomed to the sidewalks, sandwiched between the many cars and buildings lacking any storefront usage (Firley & Gimbal, 2011). Typical Downtown Full Lot Development: Taken by Author

Downtown Grid Size

Lot Development Percentages

LOT COVERAGE

SMALL


Growing

...

Downtown’s Development in Relation to the City: Taken by Author

When a city is founded upon an outdated urban model of development, it should be of high priority to the planners and architects to begin to address this issue. However, when this city is the third largest city in the U.S. and had been the second fastest growing city in the nation a couple years past, this is cause for alarm because of the serious ground needing to be covered. Not only does this mean that a shifting in design strategies should take place, but

also that this re-thinking needed to have occurred yesterday. Exponential increases in a city’s population strain not only that city’s infrastructure but also the amenities and public space needs that those citizens will require as a result of that spike. Because of this growth, huge strides need to taken by designers to ensure that this growth begins to take place in a more centralized urban location where expansion occurs in a more prosperous area.


090 091

Light Railwas Ridership Houston the is the 2nd

HIGHEST FASTEST

inGrowing the United States Per City RouteStates Mile in the United in 2012 Average Daily Ridership Increased

172%

in the First 10 Months

+0

LIVE 2011

WORK 2012

Only 7.5 Miles Exist of a Mile Large Population With

73 MINIMAL

610

Rail Line Proposal By 2025 Houston’s Urban Sprawl Results in a Large 10 Memorial Park

Existing

60%

Proposed

59

59 45

SUBURBAN

Downtown Core

Culture by Its Citizens

10

of Its Growth Over the Last Decade Occurred at least

20 MILES

Outside the Urban Core Texas Medical Center

SUBURBAN

University of Houston

45

URBAN

Light Rail Expansion

nd

+ 34,625

PUBLIC POPULATION

Annual Population Growth

TheImmense Increase of An


Suburbia

Houstonian Suburban Sprawl

Density is a term that has almost been non-existent in the vocabulary of Houston up until the last decade or so. With consistent growth primarily residing in the urban fabric’s outskirts, the city is expanding growth outwards at an alarming rate. Houston is a city almost entirely made up residents living in the suburbs currently because for the area, “sprawl has become the solution to the development equation� (Lerup, 2011). Numerous causes can be held responsible for this suburban condition,

but none are more significant than the urban disarray of its Downtown. When an urban core cannot satisfy the needs of the people in which it exists for the sole purpose for, the inhabitants begin to search outside the urban fabric for places in which they can do so. When planners noticed this increase in single family home popularity back in the post war era, they catered to it and promoted the sprawl by building more roads and highways


Large Population With

MINIMAL

Houston’s Urban Sprawl Results in a Large

SUBURBAN

Culture by Its Citizens

60%

of Its Growth Over the Last Decade Occurred at least

20 MILES

Outside the Urban Core

SUBURBAN

out to the urban fringe. Stephen Klineberg, a sociologist at Rice University, discusses the issue stating, “The city of Houston covers 620 miles...You could put inside the city limits of Houston simultaneously the cities of Philadelphia, Baltimore, Chicago, and Detroit.” With these statistics, it provokes the question, “How have designers allowed for sprawl to get this bad?” When there are ample amounts of land, little zoning regulation, and a booming

URBAN

economy, these conditions created the perfect storm for such extreme levels of suburban sprawl. Since planning was forced to take the back seat before, it is time for designers to begin to fix this issue for future urban prosperity. For my thesis, instead of choosing to ignore this obviously popular lifestyle choice of suburban culture that the citizens have chosen, I am finding characteristics that exist currently within the suburban home and merging them with those of the Downtown core’s high rise.

Suburban Sprawl Diagram

+0

092 093 2012

2011


Downtown

Downtown Houston’s Skyline

With these afformentioned urban problems that the city of Houston has been founded upon, there is no other place than Downtown Houston that needs a design intervention more. Downtown Houston is unique because as opposed to a typical urban core, “The constant 24/7 activity block of the traditional city does not exist in the tattered fabric�(Lerup, 2011). As a result of these urban problems, Downtown is currently in redevelopment to address these development issues and keep its

elusive inhabitants there to begin to live a more localized lifestyle. The urban landscape is unique in its own right because it pushes the high rises to prominence as autonomous, unconnected elements from the public realm(Firley and Gimbal, 2011). Although this is a serious design flaw within the high rise typology, Houston creates an urban core that causes this urban disconnect to become even more pronounced. Due to many factors


Downtown Figure Ground

094 095


Theater District

Downtown Development Land Use

Historic District Sports/Conv. District Skyline District


Downtown Transit Lines

096 097

Existing Transit Proposed Transit

Downtown Green Spaces

that I will delve deeper into in the upcoming pages, the design approach to the developments within Downtown Houston are grossly inefficient and unsustainble when it comes to the urban and architectural relationship. One fact of the Downtown Houston core is that it houses the second highest number of Fortune 500 company headquarters against New York City (Firley & Gimbal, 2011). When the scales of both of these cities are compared, it is a shocking surprise to notice that the office space uses in these buildings comprise a large portion of the building uses in the Downtown. When this condition of a low mixing of uses exists within a downtown, it creates a monotonous programmattic environment where vibrant pedestrian activity throughout all hours of the day ceases to exist. Due to the city’s strong economy, the need for high rise projects that extend from sidewalk to sidewalk increases with little to no uses being given to the public in the form of plazas, parks, and/or program (Firley & Gimbal, 2011). The government has noticed this issue and recognizes that there is a need to promote sound growth through the construction of various uses and is critical to the long term economic health of the city. Since this is the case, it creates the perfect environment for a hybrid building to intervene for the citizens of Downtown Houston and the time is now to spark this urban revival to ultimately foster a better urban experience for its citizens.


CITY HALL PUBLIC LIBRARY

TOYOTA CENTER

ST. JOSEPH HOSPITAL

CONVENTION CENTER

CITY HALL ANNEX

MAIN STREET

WORTHAM THEATER

MINUTE MAID PARK

DISCOVERY GREEN

MARKET SQUARE


Wortham Theater

Built in 1987, this theater is home to the Houston Ballet and the Houston Grand Opera. Made up of two theaters, the Brown Theater has 2,423 seats and the Cullen Theater consists of 1,100.

098 099

Minute Maid Ballpark

Built in 2000, this ballpark is home to the Houston Astros whose main architectural feature is a retractable roof above the field which allows for outdoor playing when favorable weather permits.

George R. Brown Convention Center

Built in 1987, this convention center services the city of Houston with over 1,800,000 square feet of exhibit halls and convention space.

Discovery Green Park

Toyota Center Stadium

Built in 2003, this indoor arena is home to the Houston Rockets of the NBA. The stadium seats 18,023 fans for basketball, hockey, or concerts.

Downtown Significant Buildings

Opened in 2008, this 11.78 acre public park is located across the street from the convention center. It consists of a lake, bandstands, and venues for public performances and numerous recreational facilities.


Pedestrian Analysis

Walker St. and Milam St. Site Perspective: Taken by Author

The site location that was chosen for my thesis intervention is located in Downtown Houston in the heart of the business district. Office buildings are the primary programmatic component within a two block radius of the site creating an environment where a hybrid building with numerous different uses is a highly desired component for the urban fabric. This lot is said to be one of the most expensive and infulential lots left in Downtown Houston due to its centralized location

in the densest part of the city and consequently has the most potential for a successful high rise project. Located blocks away from the prominent theater district and municipal district with a strong public presence amongst the parks and buildings, a rich programmattic chemistry would serve this nearby community perfectly. Office buildings in the surrounding lots are a minimum of 500 feet with the highest, Wells Fargo Plaza to the


Project Site Location

100 101

Surrounding Tunnel Network

southwest, being 1,000 feet tall. Not only do these densely congregated lots provide the immediate context with thousands of employees and a daily basis during the week, but it also means that these large amounts of people require many different uses that they would currently have little to no options to find places to do so. With Downtown Houston needing new uses integrated into their buildings badly, this lot is the perfect location for such an intervention due to its centralized location as well as an existing large number of users in the surrounding context. One of the most significant aspects of this lot and the nearby infrastructure is that it is surrounded by an intricate network of underground pedestrian tunnels that connect a great deal of the high rises and parking garages underground throughout the entire downtown. The lot is located in an area referred to as the “Tunnel Loop� due to the fact that it is encircled by these pedestrian tunnels which radiate out to the urban fabric from this location at the heart of this well-connected network. This underground pedestrian culture is significant in Downtown Houston and is a very unique, semi-public urban condition to this city that is heavily used by office workers as well as tourists. It is crucial for this project’s success to integrate into this popular existing network in order to meet the people where they are currently at within the tattered urban fabric of the city.


Site Site

Site Location in Central Business District

Site Location in Urban Context

Site

Site


Site Site

Southwest Lot Perspective

Northeast Lot Perspective

001 103 102 002

Site Site


Site

Underground Pedestrian Tunnel Location

62,500 Sq. Ft. Site Parameters


Lot District Location

Sk

yli ne

Dis tri ct

Site

Dis tri cts Summer Sun Angle

Prevailing Summer Winds

83

62,500 Sq. Ft.

Site

Winter Sun Angle

37

Prevailing Winter Winds

Downtown Climate Information

Int e

rs ec

Ga r

tio

de

nZ

on

e

nD ist ric t

001 105 104 002


Site Site

Underground Pedestrian and Vehicular Access

Site Site Public Transit Lines and Stops


Summer Sun Angle

Wells Fargo 83 Plaza

001 107 106 002

Pennzoil Place

Shell Plaza

J.P. Morgan Chase Winds Prevailing Summer Bank

Significant Buildings

Bank of America Plaza

El Paso Corporation

Center Point Energy Plaza

Winter Sun Angle

Site

Prevailing Winter Winds

37

Theater

Civic

Civic Civic

Office Buildings

Theater

Civic Residential

Parking Hotel Shopping Hotel

Surrounding Land Use

Parking


WHAT’S THE BIG IDEA?


Humanizing

PEDESTRIAN

High Rise Design

High Rises Are Infamous For Their Massive Intimidating Scale to the Pedestrians That They are Designed For

Through the Pixelation of the Form With Modular Elements, the Massive Scale of the High Rise is Brought to a More Relatable Human Scale

Human Scaling Diagram

Another stigma high rises are famous for is the banishment of The Urban building occupants to the elevators Interaction With High Rises Consists to get anywhere within the project. Mainly on the Floors of Not only does this approachBottom create the Projects With Commercial Uses a built environment that tramples on For Pedestrians the pedestrian experience, but it also cultivates an unhealthy and restricting occupant experience. This thesis tackles this head on by proposing alternate routes of circulation giving Ecology way to a “walkaable high rise.� Given this newfound walkability throughout The Project is Located in the

the high rise, human scale is crucial and is adressedPedestrian through Interaction Will Be the use pixelation. Rather than Enhanced Through the Design of a approaching a six hundred foot Public Elevated Promenade and tower as an entire facade, areas Public Park That at Ground of erosion in which the Begins pedestrians Level are located, are comprised of smaller eleven by eleven foot modules that are designed at a much more relatable human scale. This concept as a result creates a building truly designed around the people that use it. A Connection to These Tunnels Will


110 111

>_ Development Strategy Diagram

A Connection to These Tunnels Will Be Made to Integrate Into the Pedestrian Urban Fabric as Well as Create Non-Existing Public Tunnel Entrances

“Building Pixelation� Concept Model

The Project is Located in the Heart of a Fragmented Network of Underground Privitized Pedestrian Tunnels


?

Vernacular The Traits of a Houston’s

SUBURBAN

Environment Suburbs Are Experienced By Users as With Their Interaction Occuring Via The Surrouding External Space

The Urban Planning of Suburbs are In an Organic Format Where the Layout Resulsts in Fluid Circulation of Both Cars and Pedestrians

URBAN

ARCHITECTURAL

Suburban Characteristics Diagram

The Traits of Houston’s

Just as with any design project, a thorough and in depth analysis of the site and the unique characteristics of the area in which Environment the project is located is fundamental to a design Urban Planning project’s success. When thisThe study was of Urban Cores are In an Grid Format conducted by myself, I came to the Where the Layout Resulsts in Rigid realization that there is a tremendous Circulation of Both and amount of suburban sprawlCars within Pedestrians the city of Houston. As stated before, more than half of all citizens live at least twenty five miles away from the URBAN downtown. Since this is the case, I

URBAN

The Traits of the

chose to focus my research on the characteristics of the Houstonian suburb to see what characteristics they possess. Instead of bypassing this significant evidence like most Urban Cores Are have in Downtown Houston, I chose Experienced By Users With Their to not ignore that the people Interaction Occuring Via The enjoyed and wanted what these Internal Atrium developments offerred. Spaces This led to a design that contained a hybrid of characteristics from both those of a Downtown high rise as well as those ARCHITECTURAL of a Houstonian suburb.


ARCHITECTURAL

112 113

The Traits of Houston’s

URBAN

Environment Urban Cores Are Experienced By Users With Their Interaction Occuring Via The Internal Atrium Spaces

The Urban Planning of Urban Cores are In an Grid Format Where the Layout Resulsts in Rigid Circulation of Both Cars and Pedestrians

URBAN

Downtown High Rise Characteristics

URBAN

ARCHITECTURAL

The Traits of the

Organic Circulation

+

Hybrid Environment

=

High Rise Typology

Houstonian Suburb

URBAN

ARCHITECTURAL

This Combination of Both Native Topologies is a High Rise Whose Form is Bound By the Rigid Urban Grid With Pedestrian Circulation Similar to That of a Suburb Eroding Away the Form Organically

Houston’s Bank of America Center Lobby: Taken by Author

Externalized Spaces

+

Downtown’s Square Urban Grid Provides the Lot Dimensions of the Project Requiring Development to Follow Such Rigid Constraints


PRIVATE The Traits of the Hybrid Environment Downtown’s Square Urban Grid Provides the Lot Dimensions of the Project Requiring Development to Follow Such Rigid Constraints

URBAN

+

Organic Circulation

=

This Combination of Both Native Topologies is a High Rise Whose Form is Bound By the Rigid Urban Grid With Pedestrian Circulation Similar to That of a Suburb Eroding Away the Form Organically

High Rise Typology

ARCHITECTURAL

Proposed Hybrid Topology Diagram

+

Externalized Spaces


“Topological Hybrid” Concept Model

114 115


Stratification Urban Pedestrian Vertical

STRATIFICATION SKY

STREET

Urban Pedestrian

ACCESSABILITY

Downtown Houston’s Pedestrian Urban Realms Are Currently Vertically Segregated Through the Use of Streets, Tunnels, and Skybridges

PRIVATE

This Pedestian Segregation Occurs Both Publically and Privately Between All Layers of Separation

PUBLIC TUNNEL

Downtown’s Urban Segregation Proposed Existing Pedestrian Vertical

UNIFICATION

PRIVATE/SEMI-PUBLIC

Urban Pedestrian

ACCESSABILITY

One of the most unique Instead of the citizens only having characteristics of Downtown Houston’s the option to walk across the street My Project Aims toto get somewhere, developers By Implementing a urban fabric is the location of their Bridge the Gap Public Promenade Between These have allowed another alternative That Extends pedestrians within the urban context. to Three Levels of Through All Three Vertical Pedestriando so which never requires Levels, Rather than the majority of SKY the public fora Collective that Disconnection and Integration is Achieved running around on the sidewalks Unify Them Throughperson to be seen outside. While this Walkable PUBLIC alongside the sea of high rises likeCirculation a is a more comfortable alternative STREET PUBLIC typical American downtown, Houston’s during the summer months, it street life is almost entirely non existent. creates a downtown environment The primary reason as to why this has where the urban realm is stratified TUNNEL TUNNEL occurred is due to the implementation andPUBLIC diluted amongst a network of of both skybridges and tunnel networks privatized tunnels and skybridges throughout the downtown core. with little to no public presence.

Downtown High Rise

TYPICAL

Downtown High Rise


PROPOSED

Pedestrian Skybridge Level

Podiums Are Typically the Primary Location For Public Interaction Where the Tower Meets the Ground

Pedestrian Tunnel Level

Podium Ecology

116 117

Pedestrian Tunnel Dropdown The Proposal Challenges This Approach By Extending This Interaction Skyward Into the Tower Itself

Street Level

Pennzoil Place Analysis

Podium Ecology Street Level Entrance

Pedestrian Skybridge Level

Wells Fargo Streetside Analysis

TYPICAL


Urban Pedestrian Vertical

STRATIFICATION SKY

Urban Pedestrian

ACCESSABILITY

Downtown Houston’s Pedestrian Urban Realms Are Currently Vertically Segregated Through the Use of Streets, Tunnels, and Skybridges

This Pedestian Segregation Occurs Both Publically and Privately Between All Layers of Separation

PRIVATE

Unification

STREET

PUBLIC

PRIVATE/SEMI-PUBLIC

TUNNEL Proposed Pedestrian Vertical

UNIFICATION

SKY STREET

Urban Pedestrian

ACCESSABILITY

My Project Aims to Bridge the Gap Between These Three Levels of Vertical Pedestrian Disconnection and Unify Them Through Walkable Circulation

By Implementing a Public Promenade That Extends Through All Three Levels, a Collective Integration is Achieved

PUBLIC

TUNNEL TUNNEL

PUBLIC

PUBLIC

Proposed Project’s Design Solution

Downtown High Rise Downtown High Rise As stated before, with these Instead of proposing a high rise fragmented networks of tunnels and that continues this deterioration of skybridges connecting high rises to Downtown Houston’s public realm, Ecology Ecology each other and parking garages this proposal aims to bridge the throughout the urban core, Houston’s gap and stitch together these three public realm begins to be dominated regions of the urban fabric between The Current Norm My Proposal Sinks in Downtown the Tower and by the privatization of its activities. the street, tunnel, and skybridge Design is a Tower Podium and Podium Underground in Instead of having a great deal of networks. The way in which this is Located on Grade Order to Achieve Isolating Greater Pedestrian the public’s activities located on the achieved is with an extension of the Pedestrians From Connections Into Each Other at the the Project as Well streets with mixed use developments, high rise’s podium which supplies Street, Tunnel, and as the Surrounding Skybridge Levels Urban Fabric the majority of these commercial uses the public realm with much needed exist underground in a tunnel network program well beyond just the hours that only operates with the work week. of the typical work week.

TYPICAL


“Urban Integration” Concept Model

118 119


TUNNEL TUNNEL

Downtown High Rise

TYPICAL

Ecology

Ecology The Current Norm in Downtown Design is a Tower and Podium Located on Grade Isolating Pedestrians From Each Other at the Street, Tunnel, and Skybridge Levels

Pedestrian Tunnel Level

My Proposal Sinks the Tower and Podium Underground in Order to Achieve Greater Pedestrian Connections Into the Project as Well as the Surrounding Urban Fabric

High Rise Lobby & Street Level

Downtown High Rise & Tunnel Connection: Taken by Author

Downtown High Rise

Adapted Tunnel Integration Diagram

PUBLIC


Pedestrian Tunnel Level

High Rise Lobby & Street High Rise Tower & Level Dropdowns Private Program

High Rise Podium & Urban Connection

Wells Fargo Plaza Tunnel and Plaza: Taken by Author

120 121

High Rise Lobby & Street Level Street Level

One Shell Plaza Tunnel Dropdowns: Taken by Author

Pedestrian Tunnel Level Pedestrian Tunnel Level


Podium Ecology

Adapted Podium Ecology Diagram

TYPICAL

ADAPTED

Podium Ecology

Podiums Are Typically the Primary Location For Public Interaction Where the Tower Meets the Ground

The Proposal Challenges This Approach By Extending This Interaction Skyward Into the Tower Itself

PRIVATE

Pedestrian Tunnel Level

High Rise Tower & Private Program

Street Level

Pedestrian Skybridge Level Aqua Tower Analysis: Taken by Author

High Rise Podium & Urban Connection


High Rise Podium & Urban Connection

Chicago’s Trump Tower Analysis: Taken by Author

Street Level

High Rise Tower & Private Program

High Rise Podium & Urban Connection

Hearst Tower Analysis: Taken by Author

Pedestrian Tunnel High Rise Tower & Level Private Program

122 123


Process


124 125


MAXIMIZED ACCESS

The initial massing exploration was approached from a perspective that mainly accentuated and focused on the idea of the public realm’s interaction being maximized. The way in which this would take place was through the form of pixelation and erosion in conjunction with a ramp-like circulation system. Although this objective was achieved, square footage throughout the tower was severly compromised and needed another iteration to pursue further.

ADDITIVE APPROACH

Due to the nature of the previous exploration eroding away too much of tower, the next approach was taken in the opposite manner, where the urban integration and ramp would be an additive element to the form rather than a subtractive. This however caused issues within the design regarding circulation and programattic configuration so an alternate route needed exploration.


ACCESS OPTIMIZATION

001 127 126 002

Instead of an “urban ramp” that erodes away on two sides or adds on pixelation through a single spiral, a single spiral route was continued with this iteration in the form of erosion rather than addition. This route allows for increased circulation efficiency while not compromising too much square footage at the same time. Now that the bottom half “urban infill zone” was for the most part optimized, attention was needed more so at the tower above.

TOWER EROSION POCKETS Within this model, the “urban ramp” steepness and erosion radius was explored to witness formular developments in addition to the tower being addressed. Due to the programattic necessities of a hotel and residences on the north and south sides, pockets were subtracted to explore how these voids could shape these communal ammentiy areas. The infill zone ramp however resulted too steeply and the tower lacked a correct scale of erosion.


COMBINED VARIATIONS

The route taken with this model was one of pure experimentation. Due to the fact that previous iterations were not producing the desired results, a completely fresh approach was taken where linear strips of erosion were subtracted from the form to service the varying needs of both the urban infill zone and the tower. Flat platforms occured along the infill zone which resulted in too much square footage subtraction while the tower floorplates remained too large for efficient housing and hospitality.

INTERNAL EROSION

With preceding building model iterations consisting mainly of externalized erosion, the idea of internalizing this action of subtraction leaving a hollow-like shell of program as the result was a fresh one to me. This act was taken to allow for more efficient housing and residences with thinner floorplates, but as I witnessed thereafter, this left the infill zone with floorplates that were far too small for the uses required.


HYBRID EROSIONS

001 129 128 002

Although thinner floorplates were achieved with the last model, little daylight and wind penetration would have occurred so an externalized erosion experiment was conducted at the top while leaving an internalized subtraction at the infill zone. This however resulted in severe structural conflicts where a lighter, hollowed out base supported a heavier, solid tower. Programattic influences also were not as efficient within this model.

PROGRAMMATIC OPTIMIZATION

Continuing with the hybridized erosion as the model above, requirements of thinner floorplates at the tower with larger, more gradual ramps resulted in this finalized conceptual model. An internalized erosion at the tower’s top with an open air roof allowed for the needed light and wind and privacy for the hotel and residences, while an externalized erosion for the “urban ramp” allowed larger floorplates to service more square footage heavy programs while maintaining “urban transparency” between the public and their city.


Now that the bigger idea thinking of the project’s conceptual generation and implementation had been resolved, a transition from the macro scale development to the micro was the next step. Beginning the exploration of the high rise’s building form from the last massing model created, it was required to delve deeper more into the details of the project from a functionality and square footage perspectived analysis. Due to the fact that a large amount of square footage was going to be required for the high rise to perform to its programattic expectations, this was a fundamental aspect that needed careful consideration and fine tuning. During the analysis of this massing exploration, it was apparent that the square footage of the project had been severely compromised by the erosions of the building’s form. Although aesthetically the project seemed to be successful, functionally it had not worked due to the fact that such little square footage had been dedicated to the private programs within the urban infill zone.

#

1

Refined Conceptual Model #1

Refined


URBAN INFILL ZONE

179,785

130 131 3,380 Square Feet of Public/5,212 Private Program 2,736 Square Feet of Public/6,520 Private Program

Square Feet of

Private Program

109,636

2,900 Square Feet of Public/9,544 Private Program 4,033 Square Feet of Public/7,164 Private Program 3,696 Square Feet of Public/9,876 Private Program

Square Feet of

Public Program

3,851 Square Feet of Public/9,573 Private Program 4,028 Square Feet of Public/9,540 Private Program 3,696 Square Feet of Public/9,180 Private Program 1,868 Square Feet of Public/9,068 Private Program 2,012 Square Feet of Public/8,084 Private Program 2,300 Square Feet of Public/7,508 Private Program

Urban Infill

Zone

2,228 Square Feet of Public/7,984 Private Program 3,500 Square Feet of Public/6,688 Private Program 3,696 Square Feet of Public/7,164 Private Program 2,348 Square Feet of Public/9,492 Private Program 4,316 Square Feet of Public/7,960 Private Program

Urban Infill

4,104 Square Feet of Public/7,880 Private Program

Zone 2,564 Square Feet of Public/9,564 Private Program

2,996 Square Feet of Public/9,132 Private Program 3,908 Square Feet of Public/9,372 Private Program 13,280 Square Feet of Private Program 11,268 Square Feet of Public Program 10,452 Square Feet of Public Program 10,476 Square Feet of Public Program


Based on the previous refined conceptual design, the square footage of the design had to be re-evaluated in order to provide the privatized programs with their required floor areas. This crucial fault required for the scale of the erosions throughout the high rise to be reconsidered in order to reduce the amount subtracted from each floor. After the scale was reduced for the erosions, a significant increase in the square footage dedicated towards the private programs was noticed allowing for the required programs to exist within the perscribed locations. One main design feature which allowed for this to happen was by redesigning the structural core for the project by breaking it up into three separate entities. This is significant because it allows for the design to serve both the public and private programs more effectively while also reducing its overall footprint throughout the entire high rise. In addition from a structural standpoint, this creates a more viable structural solution to the design scheme due to the subtractions of large portions of the high rise’s massing.

#

2

Refined Conceptual Model #2

Refined


n

URBAN INFILL ZONE

244,335 Square Feet of

Private Program

78,241

132 133

3,038 Square Feet of Public/8,438 Private Program 3,638 Square Feet of Public/7,626 Private Program 3,662 Square Feet of Public/10,914 Private Program 4,166 Square Feet of Public/9,614 Private Program 1,979 Square Feet of Public/11,369 Private Program

Square Feet of

Public Program

3,098 Square Feet of Public/10,182 Private Program 3,225 Square Feet of Public/10,550 Private Program 3,837 Square Feet of Public/10,226 Private Program 2,078 Square Feet of Public/11,697 Private Program 3,380 Square Feet of Public/10,476 Private Program 4,322 Square Feet of Public/9,602 Private Program

Urban Infill

Zone

2,350 Square Feet of Public/12,294 Private Program 2,366 Square Feet of Public/12,849 Private Program 2,157 Square Feet of Public/13,490 Private Program 3,442 Square Feet of Public/11,773 Private Program 1,578 Square Feet of Public/13,349 Private Program

Urban Infill

2,560 Square Feet of Public/12,223 Private Program

Zone 2,654 Square Feet of Public/11,697 Private Program

3,096 Square Feet of Public/11,768 Private Program 1,644 Square Feet of Public/13,144 Private Program 2,076 Square Feet of Public/12,424 Private Program 2,939 Square Feet of Public/8,630 Private Program 7,334 Square Feet of Public Program 7,622 Square Feet of Public Program


With this last and final conceptual design scheme produced, a smaller, more micro scaled refinement took place. The “urban ramp� erosions were again more finely tuned to produce a more pedestrian friendly internal environment that would be more relateable to the human scale and ultimately a more comfortable environment for the occupants. Optimization of this major design element is crucial in order for the complex circulation system of escalators and elevators to coexist in a more efficient manner. Since these service programs for both the public and private sectors, their integration into the tower is fundamental to the project’s success. Partial erosions on the exterior of the massing were also implemented in order to articulate its fenestration while also providing balconies and terraces for the supporting programs. Adjustments along various parts of the facade were also redesigned to allow for increased natural light penetration in areas that required such and vice versa for those that did not.

#

3

Refined Conceptual Model #3

Refined


URBAN INFILL ZONE

226,285 Square Feet of

Private Program

124,138 Square Feet of

Public Program

134 135

3,196 Square Feet of Public/6,896 Private Program 2,376 Square Feet of Public/10,697 Private Program 1,103 Square Feet of Public/13,729 Private Program 1,693 Square Feet of Public/10,948 Private Program 1,604 Square Feet of Public/10,901 Private Program 3,132 Square Feet of Public/9,517 Private Program 1,332 Square Feet of Public/12,469 Private Program 2,222 Square Feet of Public/12,299 Private Program 2,376 Square Feet of Public/12,577 Private Program 3,068 Square Feet of Public/11,013 Private Program 1,239 Square Feet of Public/12,842 Private Program 2,582 Square Feet of 11,434 Private Program 1,692 Square Feet of Public/11,392 Private Program 3,225 Square Feet of Public/10,288 Private Program 2,283 Square Feet of Public/11,662 Private Program 2,152 Square Feet of Public/11,344 Private Program 2,510 Square Feet of Public/10,715 Private Program 3,544 Square Feet of Public/10,245 Private Program 1,527 Square Feet of Public/11,943 Private Program

7,769 Square Feet of Private Program 5,605 Square Feet of Private Program

26,930 Square Feet of Public Program

54,352 Square Feet of Public Program


136 137


138 139


THE URBAN INFILTRATION


Form To represent the sequencing of the major moves made during the design process, a comprehensive story had to be told to display this process. The following is a series of diagrams portraying the story of the main gestures made to generate the building’s form with the rationalities and conditions that drove them


142 143


TYPICAL DEVELOPMENT TACTIC The typical Downtown Houston high rise consists of tower on podium maximizing square footage. A larger podium is the norm with lot development taking up 100% of the site resulting in no open space beyond the streets


144 145

SQUARE FOOTAGE OPTIMIZATION

Square footage is taken from the podium and distributed into the tower to narrow the floor plate. In order to preserve the square footage and the corresponding profits, the height of the tower is increased a good amount


STREET LEVEL OPEN SPACE

The building’s podium is pushed underground to allow for street level public space. Due to the fact that the majority of Houston’s high rises develop around 95% of their lots, this is a much needed design intention


146 147

MAXIMIZED TUNNEL INTEGRATION

By locating the building’s podium below grade, this allows for maximum integration into Downtown’s existing pedestrian tunnel system. The project is at the heart of the tunnel network that extends in all directions which connects the majority of Downtown’s high rises


ON GRADE DROPDOWN ENTRANCES

At the tower’s street level base, the north and south ends erode to allow on grade entrances into the public tunnel plaza inside. These dropdown entrances increase the public’s awareness of a semi-private underground tunnel culture while providing much needed commercial program


148 149

“ URBAN RAMP ” EROSION

From the underground plaza, the “urban ramp” erodes away the form and extends the podium skyward along with the streetside experience. With the design of this “urban ramp” the stratified urban fabric of Downtown Houston is unified through the “street, tunnel, sky” design concept


PUBLIC SKYPARK

A public skypark is created at the terminus of the “urban ramp.” This unique design feature brings the public realm of Downtown Houston to all new heights while providing the necessary program in conjunction with the library expansion’s entrance


150 151

SKYBRIDGE CONNECTIONS

Skybridges extend out from various levels along the “urban ramp� connecting the nearby office buildings to the public vertical promenade. This takes what is an existing privatized element in their downtown and uses it to unify the urban fabric rather than fragment


TOWER SKY COURTYARD

A vaulted sky courtyard is created to allow for single loaded corridors for the hospitality and residential programs. This design feature results in increased passive design for the unique, privatized programs creating a more pleasant built environment for the inhabitants


152 153

COMMUNAL AREAS CREATION

Erosion punches through the tower at specific locations on the north and south facade corners for each program. These openings provide the communal ammenties for the hospitality and residential areas as well as passive design strategies for the high rise


ENVIRONMENTAL ECOLOGY The functionality of the building’s program and conceptual ideas are important, but the way the design interacts with its surrounding environment is fundamental. Natural elements integrated in conjunction with natural vegetation throughout a design result in a more healthy and sustainable project for the occupants

PM

AM


154 155 12

270°

285°

300°

315°

330°

345°

N

15° 30°

255°

45°

240°

60°

225°

75° 210° 90° 195° 105° 180° 120° 165° 150°

135°

270°

285°

300°

315°

330°

345°

N

15° 30°

255°

45°

240°

60°

225°

75° 210° 90° 195° 105° 180° 120° 165° 150°

PASSIVE CONSIDERATIONS With both the programattic requirements and the existing site constraints being taken into account, environmental considerations are also crucial for the design. Passive systems allow for the high rise to coexist more efficiently within the natural elements of sun and wind that is unique to each climate

135°


Program Directly in conjunction with this formular exploration lies the program that this high rise is made up of. Due to the hybrid nature of the programattic components that the project consists of, a delicate balance of uses had to be achieved. All programs here are uses that are currently specified by Downtown Houston as much needed assets to the city in the future as well as others that were proposed by myself to further benefit the surrounding community and urban fabric


Building

PROGRAM

PROGRAM

156 157


URBAN INFILL

Program Placement

Adapting

124,138

Square Feet

This district houses the urban infill district where the numerous uses are allowed based on Downtown’s market needs from anything from a church to a movie theater

PERFORMING ARTS

Program Placement

Culturing

63,678

Square Feet

This district houses multiple smaller performing arts venues that the city currently needs allowing for the nearby theater district to expand its borders to the central business district


EDUCATIONAL

158 159

Program Placement

Learning

69,546

Square Feet

This district houses a vocational school or charter school where students have the ability to learn in a centrally located campus as a part of the Houston skyline.

LIBRARY EXPANSION

Program Placement

Reading

87,456

Square Feet

This district houses the expansion of the Downtown’s central library which is currently located two blocks west of the project. Located at the terminus of the “urban ramp” and the public sky park.


HOSPITALITY

Program Placement

Staying

152,777

Square Feet

This district houses a five star hotel that includes numerous rooms as well as communal ammenties and attractions for its inhabitants hundreds of feet in the sky.

RESIDENTIAL

Program Placement

Living

160,164

Square Feet

This district houses multiple modes of apartments ranging from studios, all the way to three bedroom units diversifying their demographic to ensure consistent lease activity.


PROGRAMMATIC

REA

STAYING

TOWER ZONE

LIVING

Relationships & Locations

URBAN INFILL ZONE

DIN

LEA

G

RN

ING

CUL

TUR

ADA

PTI

ING

NG


TOWER

TOWER TOWER TUNNEL TOWER

0 10 30

70

0 10 30 150

0 10 30

70

150

0 10 30

70

0 10 30 150

0 10 30

70

150

TUNNEL TUNNEL TUNNEL

70

150

70

150


STRUCTURAL

162 163

Proposed Building

PROGRAM

To allow for the high rise’s complex form, peripheral and central cores were required with a brace frame system at the tower merging into a series of supercolumns that unify and separate based on erosion locations through the infill zone

CIRCULATION

To service both the entirely privatized and publicized programs, peripheral and central circulation cores were proposed. The “Urban Ramp” also provides a tertiary route allowing access to public and private programs throughout the infill zone


Public . Private As a result of this hybrid building program with multiple varying uses, public/private programattic relationships are a large design factor within the project. Conscious design decisions had to be made whether or not to isolate or collaborate these two opposing realms based on user group similarities. Programattic placement is crucial in order to ensure that proper sequencing, flow, and hierarchy allow for the uses to coexist within the high rise efficiently


PUBLIC/

Ecologies

164 165


Urban Infill Program Extends Up the Vertical Podium Promenade Which Program Erodes Away the Form

FUTURE ?

CURRENT

Urban

Urban Program Market Needs

Market Needs

Internal Street Plaza

Known Programmatic Needs of a City’s Current Condition are Required for Architecture to Meet Them

Building Program Concept Model

Private Program

Due to the Constant Fluctuation of

Market Needs within Public “Urban Ramp” a City, It is Difficult Program to Determine the Progammatic Needs our Cities Will Have in the Future

Internal Segregated Atrium

Internal Segregated Atrium

NOISY

Internal Street Sectional Detail

SOCIALIZING

SERENE

VIBRANT

CONTEMPLATIVE

RESERVED

COLLABORATING

CONNECTIVITY

INTRAPERSONAL

INDIVIDUAL

SEMI-PUBLIC

NETWORKING

SEGMENTED Library District CLOISTERED

INTROVERTED Performing

INTERACTION PAUSE INTERACTION LOITERING

MEANDERING

CIRCULATION

Arts District COMPARTMENTALIZED

CLOSED OFF RELAXING CONSTANT

PRIVATE

Shopping District

Programmatic Breakdown

QUIET

COMMUICATION

Structural Core

ISOLATEDSTRUCTURE

RELAXATION

BREAK

ACTIVE

Elevated Public Park at the End of the Vertical Broadway

OPEN

COMMUNITY

Vertical Broadway Erodes Away the Form of the High Rise Lined With Adaptive Urban Infill Program

DYNAMIC

PUBLIC EXTROVERTED STREET LEVEL

UNRESTRICTED TUNNEL

Public vs. Private LEVEL

Podium Erodes at the Lot’s Eastern and Western Corners to Bring in the Public’s Street Level Connection as Well as Underground Tunnel System

HECTIC

CIRCULATION EXPOSED PUBLIC VS. PRIVATE

Public/Private Word Association Diagram

REFLECTIVE

Cultural District

Educational District

TRANSPARENT

PUBLIC

Residential District

Hotel District

PRIVATE

PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT

More Fixed and Permenant Program Lines the Inner Core of the Tower

DETACH


PUBLIC/PRIVATE

Program Adjacencies

Residential program is the most privatized program component of the project. Placed at the upper tower quadrant of the high rise, distance allows for more serene and personal space

166 167 Ecological Fluctuations

PRIVATE

Hospitality program is also located in the tower form. This placement allows for private separation while still encouraging public access and interaciton due to a more transient based user group

The public library expansion is placed at the middle of the project where the tower and urban infill zone base meet. Due to its fully public access, it is located directly adjacent to the public sky park in the project

A vocational school separates the public library from the semi-public performing arts venues. This placement allows for the privatized program to act as an ecological buffer between

Performing arts theater venues here serve a semi-public user group. This program allows for a transition between the fully public podium below and school above

The fully public access urban infill program is located at the base of the project. This allows for maximized integration into the existing tunnel network surrounding the site

PUBLIC


2 226 226,28 P 226,285 Priva 226,285 Private Pr1 226,285 124 Private Progra 226,285 124,13 Private Program 226,285 P 124,138 Private Program 226,285 Public 124,138 Private Program Public Pro 124,138 Private Program Public Program 124,138 Public Program 124,138 124,138 Public Program

PUBLIC/

Floor Plate Relationships

Throughout the “Urban Infill Zone” a public/private relationship is shared between varying programs on each and every floor plate. Not only does this configuration result in a unique experience for the users, but a vibrant, dynamic environment is created

Square

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Square Feet of

Privatized Program Placement Square Feet of

Square Feet of

Square Feet of

Square Feet of

Square Feet of

Peripheral Tower Vertical Circulation Urban Infill Zone Vertical Circulation

Square Feet of

Square Feet of

Square Feet of

Public Program Public Program

Curtain Wall Where Square Feet of Erosion Occurs “Urban Ramp”

Public Program Placement

3,1 of Priv

3,196 Square Feet 2,3 of Public/6,896 of Private ProgramPriv

3,196 Square Feet 2,376 Square Feet 1,1 of Public/6,896 of Public/10,697 of Private ProgramPrivate Program Priv 3,196 Square Feet 2,376 Square Feet 1,103 Square Feet 1,6 of Public/6,896 of Public/10,697of Public/13,729 of Private ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate Program Priv 3,196 Square Feet 2,376 Square Feet 1,103 Square Feet 1,693 Square Feet 1,6 of Public/6,896 of Public/10,697of Public/13,729of Public/10,948 of Private ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate Program Priv 3,196 Square Feet 1,693 Square Feet 1,103 Square Feet 2,376 Square Feet 1,604 Square Feet 3,1 of Public/6,896 of Public/10,697of Public/13,729of Public/10,948 of Public/10,901of Private ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate Program Private ProgramPriv 3,196 Square Feet 2,376 Square Feet 1,604 Square Feet 1,693 Square Feet 1,103 Square Feet 1,3 3,132 Square Feet of Public/6,896 of Public/10,697of Public/13,729of Public/10,948of Public/10,901of Public/9,517 of Private ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPriv

3,196 Square Feet 2,2 1,332 Square Feet 1,103 Square Feet 3,132 Square Feet 2,376 Square Feet 1,604 Square Feet 1,693 Square Feet of Public/6,896 of Public/10,697of Public/13,729of Public/10,948of Public/10,901of Public/9,517 of Public/12,469of Private ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPriv

2,222 Square Feet 1,332 Square Feet 1,693 Square Feet 3,132 Square Feet 1,103 Square Feet 2,376 Square Feet 1,604 Square Feet 2,3 of Public/10,697of Public/13,729of Public/10,948of Public/10,901of Public/9,517 of Public/12,469of Public/12,299of Private ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPrivate ProgramPriv 2,222 Square Feet 1,332 Square Feet 1,604 Square Feet 1,693 Square Feet 3,132 Square Feet 1,103 Square Feet 2,376 Square Feet 3,0 of Public/12,469of Public/12,299 of Public/10,901


Pub 124,138 Private Program 226,285 Public P 124,138 Private Program Public Progr 124,138 Private Program Public Program 124,138 Public Program 124,138 Public Program 124,138 Public Program Square Feet of

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168 169

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URBAN

Sectional Detail

The “Urban Ramp” is where the street level experience extends skyward with public program supporting the cascading levels. Skybridges connect to this vertical promenade using an existing Houston condition that segregates the urban fabric to unify it

Passive Shading Facade System

Structural System Publicly Accessable “Urban Ramp”

Curtain Wall Attachments to Columns

Curtain Wall Erosion Enclosure

Internal Private Program


170 171


Facade Through the use of the pixelation concept, the facade is broken up into modular units all articulated around the program that they house in addition to their orientation for passive means. The concept of erosion lead to a building elevation that appears like the facade fragments as it approaches the ground while eroded chunks persist containing the “urban ramp�


FACADE

Locations

172 173


HOSPITALITY Residing in the tower area of the high rise, the hospitality program orients primarily northward. The facade’s modularity is the densest in this area in order to prevent heat gain from the low morning and afternoon solar heat gain while also providing privacy for the occupants

Prominent Vertical Facade Element Reduces East/West Solar Exposure

Reduced Horizontal Facade Element Due to Northern Solar Exposure


RESIDENTIAL

174 175 Also located within the tower region of the design, the residential program orients primarily southward. Because of this, the facade modularity is dense with deep overhangs both vertically and horizontally to shade from the Houston sun. These overhangs also serve as balconies for the residents

Prominent Vertical Facade Element Reduces East/West Solar Exposure Prominent Horizontal Facade Element Reduces Southern Solar Exposure

Private Balconies Allow Residents to Connect With the Outdoors


LIBRARY EXPANSION The library’s expansion is located at the peak of the urban infill zone with numerous double height spaces throughout. Because of this programattic scenario, the facade’s density responded by becoming more fragmented and open for natural light exposure for the readers

Larger, 2 Story Tall Spaces Fragment the Facade Into Larger Elements

Both Vertical and Horizontal Louvers Vary in Depth Due to Orientation


EDUCATIONAL

176 177 The vocational school is located in the heart of the urban infill zone. With this program consisting primarily of classrooms and meeting rooms, the facade’s modules are reconfigured to consist of two which correlate directly with the dimensions of a typical classroom

Larger, 2 Module Proportions Function With Classrooms’ Scale Better

Both Vertical and Horizontal Louvers Vary in Depth Due to Orientation


PERFORMING ARTS With the small theater venues located at the base of the high rise, the largest, triple height spaces are required here. This results in a porous louver system that reflects the program within creating a facade elevation that appears to fragment and erode as it approaches the ground level

3 Story Tall Spaces From the Theater Venues Are Reflected by the Facade’s Articulation

Less Dense Louver Configurations Allow For More Natural Light in the Vaulted Program’s Spaces


178 179

FACADE DETAIL


Chunk Model


180 181


Chunk Model Front Corner View

Chunk Model Top View


Chunk Model Top Left View

182 183


Chunk Model Top Right Ramp View

Chunk Model Bottom Ramp View


Chunk Model Bottom Left View

184 185


Chunk Model Bottom Left Ramp View

Chunk Model Top Right Ramp View


Chunk Model Top Right View

186 187


Illustrations


188 189


SITE PLAN


190 191


SOUTHWESTERN ELEVATION


192 193


SECTION


Rooftop Garden Reduces Urban Heat Island Effect and Creates Biological Diversity

Rooftop Garden Provides Panoramic Views of Houston

Photovoltaic Panels Provide an Alternate Form of Renewable Energy

Central Atrium Improves Daylighting and Natural Ventilation

Direct East and West Facades Contain Peripheral Cores Reducing Solar Heat Gain That Would Normally Occur With Glazing Here

Eroded Areas Within the Tower Provide Communal Areas for Residents and Hotel Guests

Deep Overhangs and Louvers Reduce Solar Heat Gain on Facades Through Passive Shading

Light Colored Roofing and Balconies Results in Greater Natural Light Diffusion and Reduced Heat Absorption A Sky Public Park is Proposed Providing Elevated Access for the Public’s Recreation

Use of Vegetation Throughout Purifies Houston’s Polluted Air

Skybridges Attach to Surrounding Office High Rises Providing Direct Access into the Public “Urban Ramp”

Balconies Allow Occupants to Have Access to the Outdoors

The “Urban Ramp” is Fully Accessible to the Public and Extends the Urban Realm’s Street Level Experience Skyward

High Perfomance Envelope Increases Building Efficiency

Street Level Grass and Vegetation Reduces Stormwater Runoff

Skylights Are Located at Ground Level For the Underground Podium Program

Public Plazas at the Street Level Allow for Open Space Which is Scarce in Downtown Houston A Sunken Public Podium Creates Urban Permeability Between the Project and Surrounding Context

SECTIONAL

The Underground Podium Integrates the Project into the Context and Bridges the Gap Between the Stratified Layers of the Urban Fabric

Existing Network of Pedestrian Tunnels Are Integrated into the Project’s Underground Podium


NORTHEASTERN ELEVATION


196 197


200 201


TOWER COMMUNAL AREA


202 203


PUBLIC SKYPARK


204 205


STREETSIDE ENTRY


206 207


Facade Section Detail Rendering Public Street Level Dropdowns into the Tower’s Tunnel Level Program

Tunnel Convergence Commercial Level

Basement Sunken Podium Commercial Level

SUNKEN PODIUM


Rooftop Garden for Residents and Hotel Guests

More Prominent Vertical Louvers Exist on Northern Oriented Facades to Mitigate East and Western Sun

Deeper Overhangs and Louvers Exist on Southern Oriented Facades for Passive Shading

Curtain Walls are Located Where Erosions Occur for the “Urban Ramp”

Facade Patterning Varies to Express and Cater to Programattic Components Inside

Tower Floor Plates Are Thinner in Order to Provide Single Loaded Corridors for the Residential and Hotel Programs

A Public Sky Park Gives the Citizens a Panoramic View of Downtown Houston and Beyond The Lower Half Referred to as the Urban Infill Zone Consists of Two Varying Programs of Public and Private Intertwining and Rotating Up the Project The “Urban Ramp” Extends the Street Level Public Realm Skywards While Also Providing a Secondary Form of Circulation for Pedestrians

Skybridges Attach to Surrounding Office Building High Rises Giving Employees Direct Access into the “Urban Ramp”

A Concrete Encased Steel Brace Frame Structural System Supports the Tower Portion of the Project to Allow for a Core-Free Central Atrium

Columns Rest Underneath the Brace Frame System Where Transfers Join Two Together Where Erosions Occur to Allow “Urban Transparency” for the Public Looking Out and Vice Versa

Peripheral Cores House Circulation for the More Privitized Residential and Hotel Programs Within the Tower

A Central Core Houses Circulation for Both Public and Private User Groups Within the “Urban Infill Zone” Up to the Public Sky Park

Stairs Along the Sidewalk Descend to Bring the Public Realm Down to the Tunnel Level Podium Converging at the Base Pedestrian Tunnels on all Sides are Implemented Integrating the Project into the Existing Network Throughout Downtown Houston

SITE PLAN

Escalators on the North Side Ascend Upwards Beginning the Circulation of the “Urban Ramp”


Site Model


210 211


Western Perspective

Southern Perpective


Site Plan Perspective

212 213


Southern Aerial Macro

Western Contextual Closeup


Western Aerial Closeup

214 215


Southeastern Perspective

Eastern Contextual Perspective


Northeastern Aerial Perspective

216 217


Presentation


218 219


220 221


WHO DONE IT?


Literature


224 225


Bibliography

1) Goettsch, James, (2012). How Tall Buildings Meet the Ground is as Important as How They Meet the Sky. . (e.g. 2), pp.1 2) Bharne, Vinayak, (2011). Humanizing High-rise Urbanism: Design Strategies and Planning Tools. CTBUH. IV (1), pp.20 3) United Nations, (2002). “Future World Population Growth to be Concentrated in Urban Areas”, United Nations Population Division Report, New York, NY: United Nations. 4) M. ALi and A. Aksamija, (2008). Toward a Better Urban Life: Integration of Cities and Tall Buildings. CTBUH. 1 (1), pp.2 5) Forbes, Thomas (2011). Downtown Revitilization in the United States. [ONLINE] Available at: http://thomasforbes.hubpages.com/hub/ DowntownRevitalization. [Last Accessed October 22, 2013]. 6) Powell, Robert (1999). Rethinking the Skyscraper: The Complete Architecture of Ken Yeang. 1st ed. United States: Thames and Hudson Ltd. 7) Schleier, Merill (1986). The Skyscraper in American Art, 1890–1931. New York, US: Da Capo Press. ISBN 0306803852. 8) Terranova, Antonino. Skyscrapers. White Star Publishers, 2003 ISBN 888095-230-7 9) White, Norval; Willensky, Elliot & Leadon, Fran (2010). AIA Guide to New York City (5th ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195383867., p.39


10) CTBUH (2013). “Chrysler Building - The Skyscraper Center”. Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.

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11) Maas, Winy, (2009). Visionary Cities. 1st ed. Rotterdam, Netherlands: NAi Publishers. 12) Firley, Eric and Gimbal, Julie, (2011). The Urban Towers Handbook. 1st ed. Sussex, United Kingdom: John Wiley & Sons Ltd. 13) Halbur, Tim and Negrete, Victor et al. (2011). Skyscrapers and the World of Tomorrow. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.planetizen.com/ node/51164. [Last Accessed October 12, 2013]. 14) Fernandez, Aurora and Mozas, Javier, (2008). ‘Verticalism Studio’. In: Javier Arpa (ed), Hybrids I. 16th ed. Spain: Architecture. pp.139. 15) Fernandez, Aurora and Mozas, Javier, (2011). ThisisHybrid. 1st ed. Spain: a+t Publishers. 16)

Moneo, Rafael, (1978). On Typology. Oppositions. 13 (1), pp.23-44

17) Koolhaas, Rem, Mau, Bruce, and Werlemann, Hans, (1995). S, M, L, XL. 2nd ed. New York, New York: Montacelli Publishing Inc. 18) Lerup, Lars, (2011). One Million Acres & No Zoning. 1st ed. London, England: Architectural Association Publications. 19) Fenton, Joseph, (1985). Hybrid Buildings. Pamphlet Architecture. 11 (11), pp.5-41 20) Lewyn, Michael. How Overregulation Creates Sprawl (Even in a City without Zoning). Wayne Law Review, Vol. 50, p. 1171, 2005; GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 170. 21) Kayden, J. (2000). Privately Owned Public Space. (p. 1). New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons. 22) “Urban Sprawl.” International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences. 2008. Retrieved April 10, 2014 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www. encyclopedia.com/doc/1G2-3045302857.html 23) Kunstler, James Howard. 1994. The Geography of Nowhere: The Rise and Decline of America’s Man-Made Landscape. New York: Simon and Schuster.


Illustrations

1) “Downtown Chicago Circa 1990” ©http://www.retrosnapshots.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9 df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/p/i/pitt44.jpg 2) “Downtown Chicago 1907” © http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2013/06/24/article-23471221A70FDDF000005DC-350_964x341.jpg 3) “The Home Insurance Building 1905” ©http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/3/38/Home_ Insurance_Building.JPG/230px-Home_Insurance_Building.JPG 4) “The Flatiron Building, 1903” © http://ww1.prweb.com/prfiles/2010/11/17/4241264/FlatironBuilding.jpg 5) “The Equitable Building, 1915” ©http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/98/Equitable_ Building_%28Manhattan%29.jpg 6) “The Downtown Athletic Club, 1930” © https://sp1.yimg.com/ib/th?id=HN.607990661394271337&pid=15.1 7) “The Seagram Building, 1958” © https://sp2.yimg.com/ib/th?id=HN.607986851770204546&pid=15.1 8) “Chinese Development” © http://www.vagabondjourney.com/travelogue/wp-content/uploads/ empty-high-rise-china.jpg


9) “Chinese Community” © https://sp2.yimg.com/ib/th?id=HN.608013506338555770&pid=15.1

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10) “The Hearst Tower, Foster & Partners” © http://media.glassdoor.com/m/97/8e/a9/af/hearst-tower.jpg 11) “Linked Hybrid, Steven Holl Architects” © http://media-cache- cd0.pinimg. com/736x/13/05/8e/13058e51fec24008da7ca897d7552d4b.jpg 12) “Beijing Cityscape” © https://sp2.yimg.com/ib/th?id=HN.608044198171774218&pid=15.1 13) “Shanghai Downtown Core” © http://www.luxurytopics.com/chest/gallery/city-of-the-future-shanghai-/ luxury-destination-travel-vacation-shanghai_11.jpg 14) “Case Study: Museum Plaza” © http://rex-ny.com/work/museum-plaza/ 15) “Case Study: Essence Building” © http://www.oma.com/news/2013/oma-to-build-essence-financial-buildingin-shenzhen 16) “Case Study: Landmark Tower” © http://www.archdaily.com/227940/landmark-tower-buro-ole-scheeren/ 17) “Case Study: Manhattan Analysis” © http://cursosdeinglesnoexterior.files.wordpress.com/2012/10/nova-yorkaerea.jpg 18) “De Rotterdam, Netherlands” © http://www.oma.com/projects/1997/de-rotterdam 19) “Campus Center, Miami” ©http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_X9uQOPu_oJU/TQay3DdJEEI/ AAAAAAAAMYE/6cV9T7qCUmQ/s400/1288991851-cc-section-ew.jpg 20) “Tour Signal, Paris” © https://sp3.yimg.com/ib/th?id=HN.608055382265168327&pid=15.1 21) “Fabric_Scala Tower, Copenhagen” © https://sp1.yimg.com/ib/th?id=HN.608049760155469553&pid=15.1


22) “Graft_111 First Street, New Jersey” © http://www.archicentral.com/wp-content/images/street-view.jpg 23) “Collaborative Cloud, Berlin” © http://assets.inhabitat.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/2013/12/ collaborative-cloud-by-Buro-Ole-Scheeren1.jpg 24) “Tour Signal, Paris” © https://sp.yimg.com/ib/th?id=HN.608047230413701328&pid=15.1 25) “Downtown’s Lack of Density” ©http://cdn.c.photoshelter.com/imgjet/I0000_zREFuYrCNI/s/600/600/ TRTH1012.jpg 26) “Houston’s Intricate Interstate Network” © http://media.culturemap.com/crop/f8/91/800x600/downtown-Houstonskyline-at-dusk_103425.jpg 27) “Houstonian Suburban Sprawl” © http://www.nysun.com/pics/5903.jpg 28) “Downtown Houston’s Skyline” ©http://mariebuiphotography.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/ houstonlandscape.jpg 29) “Houstonian Suburb” © http://www.2mrealty.com/images/houston_area_suburbs_850.jpg


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Dense urban environments vary greatly due to the native characteristics they possess. Although each of these cities are unique in their own right, one key component remains the same; the public realm and the private developments have always been approached as separate entities. Why has this urban demarcation of public versus private resulted in an architectural approach that includes primarily either one or the other? Why has the public realm been doomed to the streets segregated from the buildings that make up the city in which they call home? High rise buildings are infamous for this contextual design flaw and this thesis explores how both realms can coexist through “collective design.�


Architecture Thesis Book