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advance design portfolio

University of South Florida | School of Architecture & Community Design | 2013

| Erik Col贸n


“Every man’s work, whether it be literature, or music or pictures or architecture or anything else, is always a portrait of himself.” -Samuel Butler


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Residences at Plaza Los Catalanes

Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

m odern housing spring 2012 | professor michael halflants | eight weeks

Touching History

Ljubljana, Slovenia a dvance design a summer 2012 | professor nancy sanders | twelve weeks

Hoarder House Museum

Chicago, Illinois a dvance design b fall 2012 | professor mark weston | six weeks

Florida Landscapes

Apopka, Florida

mapping & making summer 2013 | professor sanders & gundersen | eight weeks

Tubma Reservoir Project

Rayong, Thailand advance design c

spring 2013 | professor jan wampler | sixteen weeks


Residences at Plaza Los Catalanes

Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

modern housing spring 2012 | professor michael halflants | eight weeks


SCHEMATIC DESIGN Micro Location Plaza Los Catalanes Cll Munoz Rivera Aguadilla, 00603, Puerto Rico Given the total parameters of the site, the overall square footage available for development (not including setbacks) is approximately 57, 013 square feet of allotted space. 7|8


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The concept of this project focuses on facilitating the social interactions and needs of the residents individually and collectively. The arrangement of the units allow for residents to feel a sense of community while maintaining a certain level of privacy. A covered farmer’s marked is designed at the street level to incorporate an interaction with the neighboring residents of Aguadilla. Retail space along the street is intended for small shops and restaurants. A strong relationship to the climate and to the location is realized by providing ample shade in highly glazed areas and angling the units to accept the prevailing coastal winds. This allows for passive cooling techniques to be applied year around. This substantially increases energy efficiency and provides an alternative cooling methods. Coastal views are available to most of the residents due to the angle of each unit.

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Touching History

Ljubljana, Slovenia advance design a

summer 2012 | professor nancy sanders | twelve weeks


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Ljubljana, Slovenia offers a rich and complex history in a tightly contained urban center. And the contemporary, post communist era has served to foster an ambitious and dynamic culture of modern interventions into that context. Works by Jose Plecnik, are studied, as he was one of the most influential architects of Slovenia’s architectural past, because his work is an important example of historic intervention through a contemporary language. Use of local methods and materials were used to create an intervention into a historically charged context with a contemporary language familiar to Ljublijana. Throughout the design, issues of space, time, and materiality transcend history and construct meaning while maintaining a sensitivity to the remaining relics of several historical epochs. Though the intervention reconstructs much of Krijanke, traces of history linger within the subtext of contemporary architectural proposition and contribute to a lineage of the cultural identity of Krijanke and Ljublijana.


Entry Courtyard a (Krijanke School of Music and Design)

Music Studios Design Studios Main Courtyard Box Office/Cafe Ljublijana Gallery of Music Reflection Garden Entry Ramp to Gallery Krijanke Church

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*White shaded areas signify where interventions are more pronounced against the historically preserved areas.

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Entry courtyard/east entrance to the Krijanke School of Music and Design.


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Section model. Illustrates the ramp leading down the Roman wall and into the music gallery. This section study shows the proposed gallery space located below the box office and cafe. Natural light enters the below ground music gallery through large light wells. These large perforations in the earth can also be experienced from above the gallery looking down into it.


Section Perspective. Entry to the gallery though the reflection garden and along the Roman wall.

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“But time growing old teaches all things.� -Aeschylus

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Hoarder House Museum

Chicago, Illinois advance design b fall 2012 | professor mark weston | six weeks


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Presuppositions |

The Hoarder House Museum Project is focused on the desire to integrate traditional manufacturing techniques with digital techniques to produce hybridized systems of manufacture which bridge the gap between the handcrafted object and industrial processes. The goal is to produce a modern architecture which will reintroduce handmade material quality to the stark modernist conception of space-making. This approach comes from an observation that the scales of decorative elements on historic buildings were directly linked to the scale of the human body; human beings are hard wired to digest the spaces in which they live through elements scaled to the human hand. Described is a process which foresees the creation of buildings processing a saturated material character by virtue of the use of performable, intelligent materials which blur the boundary between beauty and pragmatism.


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The Hoarder House Museum

810 North Franklin Street Chicago, Illinois 60610


The Hoarder House Museum celebrates the life of an eccentric billionaire whose entire life’s work centered around the collection of one single object, the clamp, in all its variations. It became an obsession of his.

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The Hoarder House Museum a cabinet of curiosities from a life of material intensity

Shrine/Viewing Platform

allows visitors to experience the first clamp of the collection and awe inspiring views of the city.

Rooftop Cafe Historic Collection

Main/Interactive Gallery

Large Event Space Studio Lobby/Information The Hoard


Directly from the street level The cafe, gift shop, and lobby are located at the street level to draw the public into the museum. Circulation through the museum is visible to the street and from the L stop in order to encourage others to be intrigued to visit the museum as well.

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“To develop a complete mind; study the science of art. Study the art of science. Develop your senses especially learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else.� -Leonardo da Vinci


Florida Landscapes

Apopka, Florida

mapping & making summer 2013 | professor sanders & gundersen | eight weeks


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In this seminar, the discussion of various aspects of the Florida landscapes is realized through creating several iterations of maps. The criteria of analysis of the landscape includes interpreting personal accounts of the place, historically significant events, scientific data, and first person interactions of the site. This analysis also examines the impact of the large-scale environmental/infrastructural transformation and development since 1950. These studies challenge standard conventions of landscape/site representation to find new and varied ways to describe and represent site/ground/context, ultimately fostering a more integrated relationship between building and landscape. *Shown Left: Initial studies of the Wekiva River System. Various aspects of the river are illustrated including: the fluctuations and intensity of the watershed and river basin, preservation of land as state/national parks to prevent urban build-up , and recreational functions located along the river.


Wekiva River System | Wekiwa Spring The spring fed Wekiva

River is located four miles northeast of Apopka. It edges span across three neighboring counties of Florida; Orange County, Seminole County, and Lake County. It is fed by over 30 natural springs that make Wekiva a major tributary to the St. Johns River. The Wekiva River System is also composed of seepage areas, lakes, streams, sinkholes, and wetlands and is surrounded by semitropical forests. Today, the Wekiva River remains to be a great part of Florida’s outdoor recreation with thousands of visitors travelling to the park every year. It is one of the most heavily canoed waters in the state. The effects of overuse and the depletion of the aquifers that provide water to the springs of the Wekiva are beginning to become very apparent. Many other complications challenge the overall health of the river. Nutrient pollution from septic tanks, fertilizers used in agriculture, and other various sources continue to raise the levels of nitrogen and phosphorous in the water. This incubates the growth of overwhelming levels of smothering algae that coats the riverbeds. The change affects the quality and overall clarity of the water, leading to a decline.

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“Landscapes can be deceptive. Sometimes a landscape seems to be less a setting for the life of its inhabitants than a curtain behind which their struggles, achievements and accidents take place. For those who, with the inhabitants, are behind the curtains, landmarks are no longer geographic but also biographical and personal.� -John Berger. A Fortunate Man. 1976.


Tubma Reservoir Project

Rayong, Thailand advance design c

spring 2013 | professor jan wampler | sixteen weeks

erik colon | hannah boehmer | brianna nixon


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C oncept + Objectives Creating a sense of neighborhood through community areas developed around the human scale Practicing environmental sustainability through PV panels and rainwater collection Various housing types attract diversity of people A public market provides goods for residences and encourages community outreach Social and recreational opportunities in pathways and public spaces foster a healthy community Distinctive identity that responds to the culture and context Access to other major cities provided by the proposed transit hub Connection to nature through a main park and green spaces dispersed throughout the development


Our urban design studio began with researching cities that excel in place making - our chosen precedent study being Venice. This ‘Space Between’ model highlights the network of plazas that one moves through while visiting Venice, providing a variety of experiences at different scales, while also connecting to the canals serve as a means of way finding. The character of these spaces served as inspiration for how we designed the framework of our Tubma settlement.

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The junk model exercise served as a means for getting away from our preconceived notions of urban design. We were able to delineate three zones in the model which eventually led to defining the three types of living experiences the site had to offer. These districts are further defined by the canals that run through them, providing residents with a greater connection to the water.

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The boardwalk acts as the main organizing element of our settlement, weaving through- out the different living areas and providing the main connection to the city center from each district. The most notable feature of the boardwalk is its relationship to the axis that connects the water market to the temple. This area of the boardwalk is, essentially, the ‘living room’ of the Tubma settlement. Shops and cafes spill out onto the boardwalk, generating bustling activity in the area. Another feature of the boardwalk is its connection to the path which encloses the entire settlement, and the level changes within the boardwalk that bring the path down to the water level.


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The project is focused on the city center, which consists of the dense urban living, a public park and lake, community buildings, the market over the water, and a connection to the boardwalk promenade to the temple. This area is designed to accommodate bustling commercial activity, with mixed use buildings being the dominate typology. Cafes, shops, and arcades define the street room in this area, and serve to bring residents out into the community at all times of the day.


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The elevation study of the urban living focuses on bringing ventilation through multi-story buildings, giving each living space three walls which can be opened and altered to allow fresh breezes of the water into the living spaces. Dividing up the buildings with these breeze channels keeps the residences from feeling too stacked or compartmentalized.

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The different types of living conditions within the settlement provide a variety of living experiences for the residents of Tubma. The three types take ad- vantage of the amenities provided by the reservoir - living above the water, on the hill, and in the dense urban core. The dense urban core is characterized by mixed use buildings which house commercial activity and multi-family residential spaces. These buildings benefit from view corridors out to the water and into the urban park, while also taking advantage of their proximity to the center of activity of the settlement.

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Many of the roofs within the settlement are defined by steep slopes which are capable of handling the rainfall during the monsoon season. However, in the hillside settlement, some are green roofs that extend out from the topography. These have cuts in them which not only define private space on the roof, but also provide for ventilation through the house. The green roof would serve as a means for collecting water and becoming an integral part of the drainage system.


The section study of the hillside living focuses on how terracing the land through building form creates a more dynamic way of dealing with the steep topography. This area also faces the challenge of dealing with rainfall by creating a series of cuts in the ground which transfer water back to the canals and reservoir. These channels also connect to water features within the green spaces in the neighborhoods, providing another soothing audible and visual experience of the water for the resident.

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The settlement on the hill takes advantage of the topography created from the fill of the reservoir, and provides views out to the water and the adjacent park. These neighborhoods are defined by their proximity to the canals and housing that is built into the land - particularly, the green roofs that extend from the topography and create private green spaces for residents.


The model of the water living community provides the opportunity to explore the small scale of this urban design project - specifically the notion of layering public and private space, defined by the central core and screen systems that divide spaces within the residences. The varying transparency allows the resident to change the exterior and interior of their home to suit their needs.

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“Simplicity is complexity resolved.� -Constantin Broncusi


16619 Palm Royal Dr. Apt 228 Tampa, FL 33647 colon.erik@gmail.com www.issuu.com/erikcolon (678) 770-3426

LEARN. CREATE. EXPERIENCE. DESIGN.



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