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Sentiment I design to create a future I want to be a part of. My structures embrace new technologies and take the honest shapes of the elements from which they are composed. The bare bones of my conceptions are not hidden, but shown proud as a testament to the soul strength of the community from which they are summoned. The buildings parallel the process of evolution as they become, inevitably, what they must be to control a healthy adaptation toward a sustainable future.






Contents 1. The Leconte-Woodmanston Memorial Installation and Chapel


2. An Archeological Museum and Collection of Artist Studios


3 . The Culinary Arts School of Asheville (CASA)


4. Downtown Entertainment Shopping Development Strategies


5. A Telecommuters’ Haven


Professional Development


The LeConte-Woodmanston Installation and Memorial Chapel Riceboro, Georgia

An effort to unite the community of Riceboro, commemorate the lives of those lost, and explore the relationship between human behavior and architecture.


Fibers Collaboration Professor Lorraine Montgomery Designed in the Fall of 2010 In Association with Meghan Rangitsch


Community Site and History

The LeConte-Woodmanston Plantation was a rice plantation established in 1760 by John LeConte. It consisted of 3300 acres of land that 231 slaves tended to. The enslaved, whom came from Africa bearing knowledge of rice production, worked hard to clear land, build dams and dikes, plant crops, and prepare the rice for shipment delivery. The lives of those that worked the plantation were harsh with little time for anything other than laborious work. In the spare time the slave community had, they developed a strong family culture and explored crafts and traditions as their ancestors had. Many of these crafts related to the cotton that filled their worlds. Their lives revolves essentially revolved around fibers. Today, the plantation consists of a mere 68 acres of land, most of which has reverted back to forestry. The internationally famous botanical garden on site, begun in 1813 was used experimentally for medicinal and exploratory purposes. Now, it is one of the only elements still maintained by volunteer workers. The fields that were once farmed oan the land left have become over-grown with grasses, and the original slave quarters that once stood burned down long ago Yet, much of the surrounding County consists of direct descendents of the original slaves. The descendents, both local and national, visit the planation once every second year to honor their ancestors, and reunite as friends and family. In order to honor the deceased slaves, and to save the plantation’s place in history, a memorial installation is erected once a year by students, for the community to enjoy.

“The Old Plantation� 1790 South Carolin, Gullah Slaves Dancing

After thourough site analysis, a bubble diagram was created that expresses the important concepts that the memorial installation should encompass. This includes three main phases in a sequential order: individual, journey, and enlightenment. These words were primarily based on a translation of the feelings of the place. They are symbolic of the lives of those that once served the land. The memorial, like-wise, will fade over time, but not be forgotten.

The human relationships explored were then given a direct connection to architecture. A chapel design was created, that translated the elements of the installation design into a more concrete form. The main goal was to create a place for those people whom gather every other year. Whether alone, or in a large group, the chapel will aim to aid users through a spiritual experience that will connect them more closely to history, and to themselves.

Felted Cotton

Georgia Cotton

Proposed Chapel Site Weave Technique

Circulation to Proposed

5 Min. Walking Radius (500’) 06

This memorial installation was completed by myself and the following students in equal efforts: David Blume, Nahome Haile, Giovanni Perez, Meghan Rangitsch, Lilya Sotirova, Cheryl Tarnofsky, and Manuela Yao.

Finished Memorial Installation The memorial is symbolic of the hard lives of the slaves, and of the future freedom it earned them. To commemorate each person as an individual, each slave’s name is written on a piece of organic cotton and hung in a timeline between two strong trees above a wetland. The names float freely with the wind, and mingle with the other names adjacent. In order to recognize the efforts of the group, Cyprus stumps that cover the acreage of the site are wrapped in cotton yarn, and eerily represent figures adorned in white. A total of 231 of them, bound together, lead to the waterfall of displa yed names. The roots, both big and small represent the group as a mass, and emphasize their commonalities as individuals. Perhaps the most important aspect of the installation is the degradation of the work over time. The path for example, will be wiped away by the next spring, when water once again fills the wetlands. This is representative of the work of the slaves, as each year they had to start over anew. The stumps and the names, both using organic white cotton, will brown and absorb the colors and smells of the site. The installation will change and warp over time, similar to the conditions in the past.


The core concept of the chapel is derived from the words “journey” and “individual”, which connect to the final destination of spiritual enlightenment. This is represented in the building’s form, that was abstracted from a lotus flower.


Fibers Installation

Image of a Scarred Slave

Fibers Installation

The private chapel space of the building is representive of the physical and emotional scars that the slaves carried. The image of the slave above, whose back has become deformed with scar tissue, inspired both the building design and the chapel piece that will hang on the interior of the stark concrete space. The installation depicts physical scars, because they serve as a reminder of the pain and suffering that the 231 slaves experienced. Perhaps not all of the slaves carried physical scars, but all of them carried emotional ones.

The felted fibers piece pictured (created by Meghan Rangitsch) in the images above is imagined to hang from the long window of the private chapel. It would allow those that enter the room to meditate and reflect on the piece. Its presence will be strong against the stark concrete and wood floors, and it’s transparency will allow light to enter the space while also creating a screen for privacy. Each scar on the large felted piece is indvidual in character, and so it reinforces the core concept of representing the individual.

Scale Model- Outdoor Gathering Roof

Key Concepts: Termination of the path/journey > Enlightenment Proportion/ Golden section Horizontal and vertical axis relationships >creating a landmark Wood/glass basic construction translated from fibers technique. Floral/organic inspiration Representing the emotional and physical scars of the slaves.

Scale Model- Southern Wall of the Nave

It also expresses the importance of the journey, as scars such as these develop over time, and take a long while to heal. Once someone has been scarred, those scars are a permanent reminder of the circumstance, and so the installation piece will be a permanent reminder of the circumstances of the slaves. Time may heal most wounds, but the memories will always remain. History is too important to be forgotten.


Circulation Paths

Wind Flow


East Elevation


North Elevation


0’8’16’ 32’


0’ 8’16’ 32’


Interior of the Nave

Final Design Statement The core concept of the chapel is derived from the words “journey” and “individual”, which connect to the final destination of spiritual enlightenment, as represented in the building’s form that was abstracted from a lotus flower. After taking into consideration the golden ratios found in the flower and translating them into a building form, fibers techniques were used to turn that form into architecture, beginning with structure. The column grid that surrounds the altar space is an abstracted version of an interlacing twill technique derived from an ancient African American quilting pattern called the “safe house”. The basic wood construction that composes this structure mimics that of the existing slave quarters on the site and will allow for the community to come together to build the new chapel structure using locally found materials. The square mass of the private chapel, composed of concrete and glass, will contrast with the rest of the form and extend upward as an axis mundi, and a landmark on the site. Inside this private chapel, a fibers installation hangs from the interior walls and uses a felting technique that embodies both the scars of the slaves, and the beginning of their healing process. The path to the building passes through many of the important site features, such as the existing formal gardens, and the pond in order to emphasize the feeling of the walk becoming a journey. The circulation through my building is one of a circumambular nature, and as one enters, they walk through a corridor with low ceilings and figure like posts, you eventually walk into the actual chapel area, which opens up to higher ceilings and a larger space. the chapel area, the sun will cast different shadows at different types of day, such as a faint glow on the eastern wall, and a more complex arrangement as the sun begins to set on the fibers inspired skin of the southern wall. All of the above concepts come together to create a chapel that honors the memory of the original 231 slaves, and allows the descendents to feel their presence and strive towards a better future.


An Archeaological Museum and Collection of Artist Studios Savannah, Georgia

An exploration of Savannah, GA through the excavation of history and the analysis of topographical information of a historical site


Designed in the Winter of 2011 Professor Woods


Community Context Site and History Savannah, GA was established in 1733, and previous to that it belonged to the Native Americans. The city is full of museums, telling of it’s long history, but all are specific to their own case. Savannah lacks a museum dedicated entirely to itself, that explores the city from the very beginning, all the way through the present and pays homage to it’s most defining characterisitcs. The site location to host this new museum is adjacent to the Trustees Garden, Savannah’s experimental garden in the mid 1700’s. It is located downtown, close to the Savannah River, and in the midst of the historic district. Today, the site is home to The Pirate House restaurant, a small office building, and an adjacent abandoned iron works factory dating back to the late 1800’s. On the site also lies the Morris Center, a space used for events such as weddings, concerts, and craft markets. The entire site wraps around an old brick wall, the remains of Fort Wayne from the Revolutionary War. The site also looks out onto the Savannah River, where it relishes in its entire historical context.

Paths and Nodes The Trustee’s Garden Historical Marker

Site Context

Distict and Edges

Tree Vegetation


Aeriel View of Site

Part of the Fort Wall

Part of the Fort Wayne Wall

View from President’s Street

0’ 32’64’


The building is sectioned off into three main sections, the past, the present, and the future. As one enters the building, they are transported down into the site, where they begin their journey through time. As they transition through time, the atmosphere changes to reflect so. The past section is underground, and fairly dim, while the present section is moderately lit, and the future portition is filled with light to provide adequate working conditions. 26

This rendering depicts the portion of the building that sits atop the old fort wall, and looks onward to the Savannah River. On the left of the image, is the main entry and lobby area. Guests know to access the building from this point, because it is most prominent. As visitors approach the lobby, they will pass through a landscaped courtyard and pass by an infinity reflecting pool. Once inside, guests will descend into the museum. While meandering through the exhibits displaying artifacts from Savannah’s past, they will once again be greated with water on the interior, because the infinity pool atop the fort wall trickles down the wall into the interior where it collects in another pool. The water adds a calming element to the design, and acts as a symbol for the Savannah River, which heavily influenced the city that spread outward from its coast. Then, guests will ascend upwards, to see exhibits that represent Savannah in its current state. Each level of the building that climbs the site offers different views of the surrounding area. This particular one looks to the old and abandoned Iron Works Factory. Lastly visitores will arise once more, back to the elevation that they entered the building. Here, they will encounter a collection of artist’s studios. These studios will be awarded to local artists, who represent the future of Savannah. Guests will be able to mingle with the artists, and to see their working process. Each studio will also serve as a gallery, and house work that will be sold. A part of those profits will go to the artist, and a percentage will go back to the museum. The entire process will give visitor’s a true sense of Savannah, and its history. It will become a new landmark for the city, to be used by the many tourists, and the locals alike.


The Culinary Arts School of Asheville Asheville, North Carolina

Putting food back into the hands of the people, facilitating a positive learning environment, reforming behvior, and regenerating a city space.


Designed in the Fall of 2011 Professor Olin In Association with the Slow Food Movement


Community Asheville and the Slow CASA is an international center for education in the production and preparation of healthy sustenance for a sustainable future. With a focus on social consciousness CASA’s mission is to educate students and the public in redefining and exploring alternatives to the present state of the food industry. Taking advantage of the current food movements: Organic production, Slow food and Local food CASA will strive to build on these foundations to prepare its students as leaders for the future. The program of study at CASA is a full emersion into both the production and preparation of food. Students will live, eat and work on site for an intensive period. They have carefully selected Asheville as their home for the openness, experience and awareness the Asheville area offers. CASA has selected a central location for their site to be an international beacon for furthering the city’s and the school’s presence. To achieve these goals, CASA is looking for a building that has a high profile in embracing both the functional and the philosophical commitments to their mission.

Macro map of Asheville

A site visit to Asheville provdided to be the best way to do a thourough site analysis because the city has such a strong personality. The experience of the visit strengthened what the “CASA” program should be, and proved that Asheville was already on the right track with the “Slow Food Movement”. The city had a very friendly and welcoming atmosphere, as well as an amazing connection to the surrounding mountains.

Site Location

The site analysis for this project relied heavily on disecting the unique urban fabric of the area. In order to do so, a physical site model was also made to aid in our analysis and use for our figure study models. It was important to not only look at the blocks surrounding our site, but also the entire structure of the city. Making a physical site model also aided in understanding the fairly steep topography of the site, and using it to the design’s advantage.

The design concept of the building was heavily influenced from the city of Asheville itself, and relies on transparency. The diagram on the left shows how the initial shape of the form was concieved from the rest of the city’s grid. The triangular shape seen to the left of the drawing, is a green space in the city that gave the new form it’s contrasting diaganols. The diagrams to the right show the buildings party, open to closed ratios, circulation, and program functions.


Site Plan

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n a ne a r r e Subt

Rendering by Shane Bevins

Downtown Entertainment Shopping Development Strategies Central Florida

Using urban planning techniques to create an escape from reality, extend the user experience, and uphold the company image


Designed in the Winter of 2012 Professor Brown and Munilla Team design also by : Tung Nguyen and Shane Bevins


Macro Plan Existing Buildings Civic Hotels/Resorts Highline Green Space Water/Canals Parking Primary Roads Secondary Roads Tertiary Roads

Macro Site Plan

Service/ Staff Support Entertainment Vacation Rentals Restaurants/Dining Hotels/Resorts Retail Highling Green Spaces Water/Canal Parking Roadways

Site Plan

Located in the corner of a 500 enterprise park, the schematic design of this downtown area becomes a shopping, dining, and enterainment destination for park guests as well as local residents. The goal of the project was to take the existing site design and modify it into a more enjoyable vistor experience that meets the real client company’s high expectations and current image. Before beginning the design process, our team created the bubble diagram above to guide us in our decision making. The new design, as seen to the left and the pages to follow, adds more RD+E square footage to maximize profits, encorporates alternate transportation systems, adds landscape design elements to create a friendly and healthy environment, and solves basic current site design problems. 44

New Site Features On the page to the right we find an areal view of the park form the tower that showcases another very promenant design feature, the ampitheatre. This large outdoor theatre is situated among a natural hilly landscape the hides a large parking garage beneath it. Situated at the very north western corner of the site, it eliminates vehicular traffic from clogging access to the rest of the downtown area. The structure provides the perfect environment for guests to watch live musical performances, shows, or to simply picnic and eat lunch. This new feature would help the downtown area attract more local residents, and would be an additional source of income.

Tower Rendering by Shane Bevins

A large tower in the center of the Downtown’s design performs several key functions. It establishes a strong central hierarchy that can be seen from anywhere on the premise, including the approach to the site from the roadways. In this way, it acts as a landmark and a guide. The tower also creates a grand approach through a forced perspective, located at the end of the main entry promenade. Lastly, it offers visitor’s the chace to experience high end dining and retail environments while they admire the breath-taknig views of the entire site from the upper stories.

Entry Promenade Rendering by Shane Bevins

Rendering by Tung Nguyen Section through Ampitheatre

Bicycle/Self Propelled Transportation

Rendering by Tung Nguyen Canal Transportation Typical Path Section including High-line

Walkable Areas

Transportation and Experience Currently, the site of the downtown area consists of large and unshaded walking paths. This proves to be a problem in the hot and humid climate, and even moreso during the almost daily afternoon rains. In order to provide a more comfortable outdoor experience, the new site plan features shaded walkable paths, a new canal transportation system, a high-line that provides access to second story shops, and faux hills alongside live greenry. These new elements bring excitement to the experience of exploration, and offer a variety of new activities to visitors. They also unite the entire downtown area, instead of seperating it into differently themed districts as it currently is. Instead of relying on several themes to entertain visitors, guests will be drawn to the large functional landmarks and the activities that coinside.

Renderings by Tung Nguyen

Parking Hill

Retail Shops

Walking Path

Bike Path

Shaded Walking


Walking Path


Abstract Technology has the ability to provide greater impact for less effort; and should be used as a primary tool and motivator in the sustainability movement. Green Information Technology, or “Green IT” aims to solidify this idea by creating and transforming new technology that aims to solve some of the current environmental issues facing humanity. Unfortunately, Green IT users are often stuck in unhealthy work environments that stifle their potential to ideate, create and implement. This is where Einstein’s theory that “No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”, comes in. This thesis aims to facilitate these users to begin a sustainable, technological revolution. In order to understand how architecture can begin to create a healthy environment for this niche of telecommuters, the lifestyles, work habits, and developmental successes must be observed. If architecture were to overcome the current limitations, technology may finally have its chance to prove itself as a positive contributor to the movement towards a sustainable future.





Sense of Community Work/ Play Balance Reconnecting with Nature Life within Reach

Since the thesis aims to create a new community typology the selection of a site was very important. The site must not only act as a facilitator to the users and their goals, but to the architecture that will be developed upon it. There were many important elements to be considered in the selection of a site location, the first of those being the users. The site needed to be in a location surrounded by IT users, so Florida was chosen not only for research proximity, but for yearround, pleasant, subtropical weather. The specific site was chosen for it’s large acerage of mixed use xoned land in close proximity to the downtown area of Gainesville. The site location has access to local schools, bus systems, and bike paths, but must work to conserve it’s natural environment and the watersheds and creeks that inhabit it.

Macro Site Plan

Site Location


The site design concept focused on creating a loosely grided collection of buildings nested within the natural environment. Importance was placed highly to the east, where the design shares its main connection to the surrounding community. From the eastern entrance, others are drawn into the center, where the office share and main work spaces are located.


0’ 32’ 64’


Community The complex makes an effort to connect with and engage the surrounding community. A bus stop resides just inside the East border, and connects to the existing Green Line city route to offer residents an environmentally friendly way to get downtown. The entire complex is pedestrian friendly, and an open gateway to the surrounding locals. Gainesville residents are able to use the small community center, pool, and gym. They also have access to the outdoor plazas, trails, and can pay a monthly fee to gain access to the communal workshare office space. The aim of the Telecommuter’s Haven is to be a sustainable inspiration to the users, and the surrounding area.

Community Pool and Center


Work Environements Telecommuters have the unique ability to live, work, and play in the same place. In order to promote a healthy balance in the lives of the users, work and play relationships were analyzed into typologies. From these typologies, several different work spaces were created to fit every user scenario. These include: A. Communal Workshare Office B. Home Offices C. Private Office & Meeting Spaces D. Public Outdoor Spaces Each of the work environments are open for use 24 hours a day, to account for the fact that each user is productive at their own time, according to their specific circadian rhythm.

Living Arrangements Five apartment buildings on site provide housing for up to 500 residents. The buildings are composed of groups of units that stack together, aligned against open air circulation corridors. With seven different unit types to choose from, residents live comfortable lives in customizable spaces. Each unit type comes with at least one home office, to ensure that every telecommuter can work from home. The apartment buildings are environmentally friendly. They harness the strong sunshine of Gainesville with solar panels on the roof to help distribute electricity to the common spaces. A waste-water catchment system collects rainwater for use as grey water for plumbing and landscape maintenance. Passive systems such as operable windows and brise soleils accompany the geothermal pond system to keep residents comfortable.

St r uc t ur a lDe t a i l s

ms e t s rSy e t Wa

ng i ool ndc ng a i t a he l a m r e h t o Ge Hous i ngSe c t i on

Typical Apartment Building


Professional Development


Project #1: University Mall Fairfax, VA 2009 In Conjunc on with Samaha Associates, P.C. Objec ve: Renovate an older exis ng mall to contemporary standards and expecta ons. My Role: For this specific project, I was asked to create eleva ons from new floor plans that other employees created in AutoCAD. The client requested an Art-Deco theme, and had picked out some imagery of other projects that he liked. From standard CAD block eleva ons, I personally drew a new facade, drawing inspira on from the client’s images. The eleva ons were drawn in CAD un l they were approved by a higher authority. I then began to look for finish materials and colors to match the design sense. The finished product was a large presenta on board with material samples a ached to show the client the vision of the new facade, and textures of how it would actually feel. The client was very happy with my produced work, and further revision to the project con nued while I was back at school.


Project #2: Sandy Spring Bank Frederick, Maryland 2010 In Conjunc on with Samaha Associates, P.C. Objec ve: Renovate the inside of an exis ng bank branch loca on by upda ng the layout and picking new finish materials My Role: This drawing was one of many for this project. I worked with several Sandy Spring Bank loca ons and produced several drawing op ons for each one. My first role in this project was to go with another employee to the site, and confirm measurements on the exis ng plan drawings. A er that, I drew the plans accurately in Revit. Then I worked with my boss and other associates to come up with new layout op ons. I drew these op ons in Revit. We then had several mee ngs with the client where we presented them with dierent samples of finish materials. A er materials were chosen, I created the plan shown as a graphic representa on.


Project #3: Oakbrook Center Publix Summerville, SC 2011 In Conjunc on with Thomas and Reel Engineering Consultants, Inc. (TREC) Objec ve: To design a new front facade to the shopping center and create detailed construc on documents. My Role: The drawing shown was done in full by myself. The Publix center at hand was having issue with birds nes ng within and damaging their exis ng store sign. In order to fix the problem, precau ons were taken in order to resist a repeat occurance. For this task, I had to draw a three dimensional sign in Revit, to show the client what the new design would look like. Once approved, I began researching how the compnents would come together. I designed a new framing system that fit in the overall exis ng frame, and serves as structural support and housing for the electrical wiring needed for the sign. In order to prevent birds from nes ng, the profile of the back of the sign was kept smooth, and a synthe c stucco was used to match the exis ng store aesthic. This drawing was one drawing a few in the set.


Project #4: The Village Library Savannah, GA 2011-2012 In Conjunc on with Thomas and Reel Engineering Consultants, Inc. (TREC) Objec ve: To create finished drawings for an addi on to an exis ng library that fulfills the extended program requirements. My Role: The Village Library project was started before my me working at TREC. By the me I began working on it, most of the design work was finished by others. I aided in the correc on of documents including plans, sec ons, construc on details, and specifica ons. The plan shown is one that I extensively edited to be er design propor ons, more accurate dimensions, and clear notes. The project has since been approved by local legisla on.


CONTACT Jessica Schwartz 3673 Boundary Street San Diego, CA 703 966 3017

Jessica schwartz full portfolio  
Jessica schwartz full portfolio  

Here's a preview of some of the best work I created during the 5 years I attended The Savannah College of Art and Design.