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gb 2013

Genc Berisha B.Arch

timberpavilion birdwatchers

The memorial acts as both an entrance and an exit to the visitor center. The precense of the extracted granite acts as a buffer from the outside world, envoking both reection and appreciation for this exploitation of nature.

extract+immers typhalatfolia stressedskin ddbc6 COMdonor recognition wall Phoenixabby

timberpavilion sonoran desert tucson az

The wood pavillion is a project located in Tucson, Arizona. The proposal required the use of a timber as the structure, while creating shade and a seating area. The design concept introduces two independent structural bays. Individually, these bays cannot support the weight of the roof, but when tied together they become strong enough to create the structure. Between the bays is a planting area that is fed by the roof drainage. This planting area separates one area of the pavilion from the other, further accentuating the two sides of the structure.

Section 1

Section 2










_structural investigation//model building exersize//fall_2010

birdwatchers sonoran desert tucson az

The Bird Watcher tower is a tower that utilizes steel as its main structural element. The design concept aimed to create a tower that looked as if it is made of one continous piece of steel that is folded back and forth until the final building height is acheived. This folding also allows for 50% shade 100% of the time. Form is dictated by force diagrams and moment calculations; as the building increases in height, the moment decreases, which results in a reduction in the beam sizes. To further accentuate the folding plane concept, the edges of the structure are terminated at a knife edge.

_structural investigation//model building exersize//fall_2010


wells lamson granite quarry west barr vermont


_extra curicular design competition//spring_2012

wells-lamson quarry, east barre Vermont


The 2013 Lyceum Competition asked participants to design an inclusive artist retreat for an abandonded granite quarry in Barr, West Virginia. The program for the artist retreat includes residences, studios, an educational area, exposition area, and a memorial. My design concept was to continue in the historical manner of the past by quarrying out more granite. The voids are then filled with new program elements while the waste is reused in the entry / memorial area. Glass is utilized on all facades and wall systems in order to illustrate the process and the experience of the granite quarry. Residential buildings are located to the west of the site and all units have a lakefront view. The other program elements are on the east side quarry, adjacent the main pit. The experience culminates in a glass floor that sits 500 feet above the quarry floor, further illustrating our effects on the environment.


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A. parking B. memorial / entry exit C. education / outlook D. studios E. dwellings


scale 0










1/8” = 1’

Floor plan scale 1/32” =1’


anchor bolts light mitigation

smooth / rough


W24x162 3x6 C channel mining screen skin window frame / window wood flooring

1” tempered glass wall 1” tempered glass floor window supports spider clip scale

1/4” = 1’

The memorial acts as both an entrance and an exit to the visitor center. The precense of the extracted granite acts as a buffer from the outside world, envoking both reection and appreciation for this exploitation of nature.

typha latfolia sonoran desert tucson az

The nature of structures class required students to examine either a phenomena or structure that is present in nature. I chose to study the typha latfolia, more specifically the leaf. What drove me to the leaf structure was its light weight, long length and thin cross section. I was curious to understand how the leaf can stand on its own and even more curious about how it withstands wind and rain. After many studies and drawings I began to model what I believed to be its strongest quality. The ability to twist, I believe that the leafs ability to make a 360 degree rotation about its long axis is the reason why the leaf can stand and resist the wind. Through modeling I found that it is true the rotation deflects any sort of load applied thus allowing the leaf to maintain its structural integrity. Next I interpreted the model into a system that would connect X number of models together to create something new using the natural structural system. What was made is an extremely flexible and adaptable surface that embodies the natural characteristics of the Typha plant.

_nature of structures//fall_2012

stressedskin structures tucson az

Load Diagram

The stressed skin cantilever project required the fabrication of an 8-foot long cantilever that extended 6 feet past the base and has a 2-foot back span. The entire cantilever is made of 1/8� plywood that was molded in custom formwork to acheive the shape. The end result yielded a 12lb cantilever that withstood a 243lb point load applied at its tip.



(V 0 )


(M0 )

Force Diagram

Stress Diagram

Maximum concentration of stresses, Max Moment;


_structures experiment//model building//spring_2011






c deflection


form bias





barrio san antonio tucson az The Drachman Design Build Coalition has been teaming up with the College of Architecture for years in order to design develop and build a number of HUD houses. As a class we worked together to design, build, budget, and schedule the entire process that led to the completion of HUD house number 6.

_design+build studio//spring_2012

COMdonor recognition wall college of medicin tucson az

During my fifth year design build studio we collaborated with the Univesity of Arizona College of Medicine to create a donor recognition wall. The proccess included multiple design competitions where each student submitted their proposal, the college of medicne then voted on their favorite designs. From there we grouped up and developed our proposals to more refined and thought out design. Next we presented the proposals COM lobby space to the Dean of the college and all of his associates. They then determined which one would win via college wide vote. My design had won the competition, but lost out in the end due to the deans personal taste. From the on we developed a working set of drawings and began the construction proccess. We built a mock up lobby space and began constructing the donor wall in a fashion that would allow for its removal from the college of architecture and later ints installation in the College of Medicines’ lobby. The experience was very intelectually and logisticly challenging , but in the end we delivered a product that both the College of Medicine and the College of Architecture will be proud of for years to come.

_design+build studio//fall_2013

COM design proposal

Phoenixabby 300 w. monroe st. phoenix az

Located within the historic 1929 First Baptist Church in Phoenix, Arizona, the Phoenix Abbey project introduced a contemporary museum into the confines of a decaying abbey. The historic character of the space was paramount in the design process, and lead me to create a building system that would sit within the walls, touching them in only specific places in order to support the walls from overturning. The key principles behind the concept included the need for a unique lighting condition, which is accomodated through the ‘gap’ between old and new. The ‘gap’ utilizes the existing walls as a thermal mass while allowing the decomposition of the walls to continue.

_senior capstone//spring_2013

Section[A1] Scale 1/16” = 1’



Section[A2] Scale 1/16” = 1’


Section[A3] Scale 1/16” = 1’


Section[B1] Scale 1/16” = 1’

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Genc Berisha

Genc Berisha