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Confidential Master Plan Competition 59

Houston, Texas, USA

Competition: 2013

The plan proposes a conceptual model for

With a unifying “carpet,” the initial strategy

capacity to sustain a dense population,

improving the quality of life in this district,

seeks to connect previously separated

regenerate natural resources and mitigate

which is 12 miles west of downtown Houston

neighborhoods. This sustainable urban

the effects of climate change.

along the Interstate 10 Energy Corridor.

topography provides a foundation for the city's infrastructure. New districts designed

The design separates vehicular activity, giving

Though it greatly improved connectivity

around the corridor are confined to the

preference to pedestrians. The long-term

among US cities, the introduction of

limits of the blanket, creating a diverse but

proposal looks to negate the automobile-

the country's Interstate Highway System

compact urban footprint.

driven development by providing alternative

divided many neighborhoods. In Houston, the

transportation methods. This reduces the

highways have hindered pedestrian movement

The “performative topography” concept is

strain on roadway infrastructure while

and damaged residents’ sense of community.

integrated with a plan to use vertical growth

creating an urban environment that promotes

to resolve horizontal sprawl. By expanding

community interdependence.

The new master plan creates a more livable

vertically, new development requires less

civic space by cross-pollinating building

infrastructure and land.

systems, public and private sectors, and

◄ aerial view

active and passive landscapes. The design

As it restores the equilibrium of culture, city

introduces a new example of city-making and

and nature, the landscape strategy gives

injects a sense of place into the area.

the current urban environment the

2014 design annual

13.1 million sq. ft. / 1.2 million sq. m.

2014 HOK Design Annual