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Azhar Khan

Dwell to exist

Background Intent Resume


Augmented Urbanism Rural School Ski Orlando Charleston Institute of Fine Arts


Horological Machine Books and Nooks Cultural Center Luminaire

Competition Witters


Intent The success of our existence relies upon how we dwell, an axiom that is the foundation and drive of my current and future work. With diverse educational experiences and a developed global perspective I strive as an architect to answer the needs of the built environment through necessity and resourcefulness. Indian customs and traditions taught me to appreciate and utilize all available resources. Seeing the exponential progress in my childhood home, Dubai, I saw a culture similar to mine contradict its Bedouin roots and exemplify luxury architecture, pushing beyond all available resources to create an autonomous utopia. These experiences aid my studies in the United States and fuel the design process for my masters research project. Understanding the relationship between my culture and architectural demands, I have developed a global perspective; that luxury is the thoughtful and sustainable use of one’s resources in a built environment. My designs take full advantage of my multidisciplinary background. Engineering has given me an

understanding of the importance of efficiency and function, whereas architecture has challenged me to experiment and play. I am now able to be creative, but also able to ground my creation in the real world. My background allows me to explore the use of technology in design, particularly parametric tools and computational techniques while paying close attention to environmental constraints. An illustration of this can be seen in my portfolio. My focus is on contextual design where parameters are directly influenced by surrounding cultural, environmental, and built factors. In my portfolio I greatly underscore the symbiosis between man and building – primarily that we dwell to exist. I am looking for a design firm that appreciates the value in collecting individuals with diverse backgrounds and world views. Throughout my academic career I have worked with people who come from a wide range of countries and academic backgrounds and I have come to appreciate the strengths and challenges in such collaborations.

Education University of Florida Master of Architecture 3.87 GPA 2009-2013

Languages English Hindi


Master of Science, Aerospace Engineering 3.67 GPA 2008-2009 Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Bachelor of Science, Aerospace Engineering 3.58 GPA, Cum Laude 2003-2006

Employment University of Florida School of Architecture Design Intern Quinlivan Passivhaus Project Architect Bradley Walters June 2013

Software Design DDS CATIA Google Sketchup Ecotect Vasari

McNeel Rhino Grasshopper Kangaroo FireFly WeaverBird Octopus/Galapagos LadyBug T-Splines

Graduate Teaching Assistant Advanced Topics in Digital Architecture Professor Lee-Su Huang Spring 2013

Autodesk Revit Inventor AutoCAD

Introduction to Architecture Structures Dr. Nawari Nawari Fall 2012



Photoshop InDesign Illustrator After Effects Premier Pro

CATT Acoustics Dynasonics AIM

Theory of Architecture Dr. Hui Zou Fall 2011 US Space and Rocket Center (Huntsville, AL) Instructor Tom White Spring/Summer 2007





Awards American Institute of Architects Certificate of Merit Spring 2013

Azhar Khan

Architecture Masters Research Project Design Honor Award Spring 2013

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First Place Witters Design Competition Spring 2012

Nationality: India Residency: USA, UAE Age: 29 Status: Married

Graduate Teaching Award Spring 2012 Merit Scholarship Study Abroad Program Mexico Summer 2012


Arthur Bleen Anderson Scholarship Study Abroad Program Paris Summer 2011

Other Guest Lecturer ARC3880 Sustainable Architecture Spring 2013 Selected Work School of Architecture Digital Showcase Spring 2012 Displayed Work Florida Rural Summit (St. Augustine, FL) Spring 2011

Published Work “Bridging Authenti-city: Design Studio 5” Fall 2010

Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities Sigma Gamma Tau Aerospace Engineering Honour Society Order Of Omega Greek Leadership Honour Society

extracurriculars Sigma Beta Rho Fraternity, Inc. President Treasurer National Philanthropy Committee Member 2005-2006 Student Government Organization International Student Representative 2005-2006



Graduate Studio 2 Spring 2012 | Fifteen Weeks Critic: Assitant Director Nancy Clark Critic: Professor Anne Lacaton

Pleasant Street Historic District Gainesville, Florida, USA


Living in Urban Conditions: the 3rd place

Private Space Voids for light and ventilation pucture existing spaces creating versatile, unprogrammed 3rd places within the dwelling

Semi-Private Space On a larger scale, these voids allows for spaces shared by immediate neighbors. This space aims to increase social interaction and open the activities of the dwelling to the outside.

Semi-Public Space Integrated semi-public spaces make up for the lack of exterior public space in the city and offer a versatile platform for various activites and demographics.

Public Space The reality of public space in the city: experienced through a car windows on serpentine freeways.

The first objective was to develop a video that explored the idea of living in urban conditions. The concept of ‘3rd place’ by sociologist Ray Oldenburg was the driving force for this excercise. The lack of informal public spaces, 3rd places, is evident in most American built environments. Vehicular tranportation is becoming essential to access 3rd places such as restaurants, parks and shopping areas which in the past were all accessed by foot and usually along one’s trajectory to work. Recognizing the change in the way we work, move, interact and essentially live; it is vital then to accomodate the 3rd

place into our current dwellings through densification. Semipublic and public spaces need to be introduced into the fabric of city living in order to facilitate passive and active interaction between neighbors, neighborhoods, communites and the city. The video explores the introduction of private, semi-private, semi-public and public 3rd places into a vertical housing complex. Our character traverses through spaces that transition from private to public spaces with varying densities. The goal is to encourage a diverse range of activites for all ages and peoples, as well as balancing interaction versus anonymity.


Pleasant Street Historic District: voices of the city The Pleasant Street Historic District is home to the oldest African-American residential area in Gainesville and has remained the religious, educational and social center for the African-American community for over a hundred years.

Current urban condition in the district

“I moved... a lot of people moved, for the better. A lot of houses were old. We outgrew where we were living at and wanted something better.” -Linda, long-term resident

When emancipated African-Americans moved into Gainesville after the Civil War, many congregated here where they could buy land and establish their own churches, schools and clubs. Many were skilled workers, tailors, blacksmiths, shoemakers and carpenters who found ready employment in town. “This is where the real college town elements are, the funky restaurants and stuff like that.” -Zak, student-residen “We wouldn’t have moved here probably if it was exactly how it is now. Before it was a lot more families, we wanted our kids to grow up in a neighborhood with not a lot of people that looked just like them.” -Amber Kelley and Neil Lorenzini, single-family homeowners

District after open spaces are ‘infilled’ and public spaces installed

The district has seen many changes over the past several decades. Two of the most notable are the changing demographics in the area and the intrusion of commercial enterprise from the periphery. The analysis of the historic Pleasant Street District was conducted through a series of interviews accross a wide range of demographics. Long-time residents, new home-owners, renters and students provided a unique insight into the changing environents and challenges faced by each community.



Adaptive Urbanism: optimized high-density living IDENTIFID ISSUES Lack of usable public space Sense of community at risk as student influx stratifies age groups Property ownership moving from single-families to owners who rent to students Lack of student investment in community GOALS Provide opportunities for local employment through mixed-use interventions Celebrate the diversity of the neighborhood though interventions and 3rd places that integrate not segregate students and single-families Introduce active public spaces Return ownership back to single-families All buildings in the district showing existing hard-egdes Unused open areas


Public space Parking areas

Utilize existing open spaces as areas for housing interventions though ‘infilling’ to activate and frame new public spaces. EDUCATION Celebrate diversity instead of trying to fight it. Recognizing students as sources of income through rent and as educators for the community mitigates the negative contributions of this demographic. PHASED INTERVENTIONS The aim is to design a system of construction that can be modified in scale and density for each situation. “It’s necessary to demonstrate that the act of conversion means that certain structures remain, that they prolong their life, thus providing new ways of being used and lived in.” - Anne Lacaton Interventions are introduced in phases and can adapt to different conditions of housing, retail, parking, etc.

STAGE 4: COMPUTATIONAL RESEARCH Adaptive Urbanism: optimized high-density living OPTIMIZATION USING EVOLUTIONARY SOLVERS Implementation of Non-Intuitive Design Processes In brief, the evoltionary solver used, Galapagos, tests for favorable design iterations, ‘mates’ them and then tests their ‘offspring’. This cycle continues for generations until a near optimized offspring is achieved. The housing intervention utilizes the optimization process in three scenarios, resulting in a sustainable design configuration that would not be possible through intuitive processes alone. Scenario 1: Floor Slab Optimization


Each of the sixteen plots are organized so as to receive the maximum amount of solar insolation in winter. The dimensions of the plots are modular and adapt to accomodate the sun. An optimal result guarantees at least five hours of sunlight per plot in winter.

Most plots on the district follow a 15-foot module in varying combinations. Plots range from small single-family dwellings of 3,000 sq.ft to plots of over 9,000 sq.ft. Neighbors of varying economic conditions and sizes reside on the same block as neighbors.

Scenario 2: Massing Optimization Level 1 As a study, we introduce modular masses onto each individual plot and attempt to organize them so as to occupy the coolest areas on each plot. Solar insolation data for each plot is available from the previous result.

The goal was to provide the same level of plot diversity on a vertical scale. For the intervention the goal is to maintain this diversity. By stacking modular plots and offering each owner a double heighted space, we are able to give each resident twice the building area they would have on the ground.

Scenario 3: Massing Optimization Level 2 We then add masses on a second level such that they maintain a specific degree of overlap with the mass below (again obtained from the previous result). The resulting configuration ensures that there are opportunites for roof gardens, coves and balconies.

A new set of plot modules that reflect the plot diversity are defined to populate the three-dimensional housing intervention. For our current intervention, by placing FOUR plots per floor over FOUR floors we are able to intoduce SIXTEEN residential units on a site that would originally support only 6. Left: Typical plot sizes measured on two blocks of the district (sq.ft) Above: Derived modules to be implemented in optimization stage

The plots on each floor are arranged non-intuitively, through an optimiaztion process illustrated to the right.

STAGE 5: IMPLEMENTATION Establishing a new mode of construction

The following strategy can be applied to interventions of different scales and densities. For example, here we are following a 4plot X 4floor strategy. The system can easily be modified to accomodate more residents (6plot X 4floor) or a shorter intervention with the same number of residents (8plot X 2floor). The steps remain the same and the resulting intervention can easily accomodate other programs such as education and entertainment. OPTIMIZATION AND BUILDING PERFORMANCE The optimized results ensure that plots and dwelling masses have maximum exposure to solar insolation in winter, reducing energy costs for heating in North Florida’s winter. A by-product of stacking the plots is the benefit of shading during the summer. Each favorable configuration from the optmization process can be analyzed for performance in winter and summer months, helping further reduce energy costs.

Optmized result

Overlapping areas to map structural system

By calculating each plot’s performance throughout the year we can assess the performance of the massing volumes as well an edit them as needed.

Resulting column-slab and service core locations

Winter Solstice December 21st

Floor Slab Optimization

Massing Optimizations

Summer Solstice June 21st

Floor Slab Optimization

Massing Optimizations

Spaces between plots at each level serve as semi-public unprogrammed 3rd places that connect neighbors horizontally and vertically.

Unused vertacal space is converted to vertical circulation. The lower floor serves as retail.




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1. living units 2. optimized structural slabs 3. shared semi-public space 4. gardens 5. vertical circulation 6. supporting programs 7. parking

“The criteria we consider to be of utmost importance are the quality of life and of the spaces, the idea of comfort based on sensations, atmosphere, uses, rapport with the context; all those elements that go to form the meaning and the interest of the architecture, defined not only as construction or a technical machine but as a space to be lived in.� - Anne Lacaton Residents of the housing intervention, given the freedom to design as they will on their own plots, collectively display the diverse nature of the Pleasant Street District itself. The intervention constantly evolves, serving as a live indicator of the resident’s social and cultural values.

Regarding semi-public space - “The residents feel very attached to these communal spaces. That’s why they deserve a minimum of upkeep; in order to be used and recognized as such. It’s necessary to be attentive to the interpretation people make of these places, the outcome of the co-opting of their original purpose.” -Anne Lacaton

STAGE 6: OVERVIEW AND CONTINUATION Benefits of Modular Expansion

The intervention provides 16 dwelling units as well as retail and education programs to support the public park to the East. Subsequent phases infill similar territories to help support these spaces. This process of construction allows to accomodate multiple units over plots of any size. Although the units are stacked the process of optimization minimizes the negative effects of traditional multistorey constructions such as availabilty of light, outdoor space, multi-level units, roof gardens and semi public spaces. This method also allows the system to be adaptable to accomodate offices and retail to increase the diversity of the community. The plots themselves can be adapted to accommodate individual expansion and configuration of living units. Further infills into adjacent lots can then frame public spaces that will be activated through current residents and other consumers.

Left to right: Spaces connecting units on the same floor serve as semi-public ‘3rd places’ that are utilized and managed collectively.

Rural School

Making Place With Regional Resources

San Martin de las Canas Jalisco, Mexico

Graduate Studio 3 Summer 2012 | 6 Weeks Critic: Professor Alfonso Perez-Mendez Critic: Professor William Tilson


Understanding the Nature of the Site

Fragments of old walls of the hacienda, such as those used as aqueducts are found throughout the site. At times they are visible from the street, at other moments they seem to disappear into a row of residential houses. Often they are seen puncturing existing volumes where residents simply use them as part of their own constructions. And yet remnants of these walls can be found within other walls as well; identified by subtle shifts in their materiality and texture. When drawn, one can clearly identify the preexistence of a system of walls that plays with the current organization of volumes and plazas. At the site, walls come in different forms, materials and are are made for different purposes. Images at Right: Porous wall of church, irregular stone wall, layered hacienda wall, channel of water at ground level. Rationalizing the site and discovering governing geometries

The School of Music is a rural intervention that attempts to address the issues of site, climate and place-making through a series of buildings whose form and tectonics are derived from local conditions. To create an architecture compatible with the ideals of Critical Regionalism, an attempt was made to “mediate the impact of universal civilization with elements derived indirectly from peculiarities of a particular place” through a process of “critical selfconsciousness.” This process involved a series of analytical site drawings as well as deriving ideas from local structures and plants.

Solving for modules inherent in each grid

The first step in the design process was a series of analytical drawings of the site. These drawings helped identify two unique characteristics of the village. Almost all volumes around the site follow one of three grid systems that together form a triangle that governs the plaza. It is interesting to note that although the rectilinear volumes attempt to follow the grid, at many occasions they are ‘spliced’ through necessities for circulation, topographical changes or for water management. The resulting trapezoidal volumes are evidence to the village’s attempt for a rationalized grid of volumes that is mediated by natural forces. This idea of following a grid but ‘splicing’ elements and volumes for circulation or water is fundamental to the design of the school.

The school consists of three buildings spread out over the site such that they form the three vertices of a triangle - the basic shape governing the organization of the existing plaza. They are spread out in this manner in order to activate various areas of the site as well as to organize the public and semi-public spaces between them. Bridges span the buildings, connecting them physically while framing views to the sea. One enters the site from the plaza via existing circulation routes. This route is axially offset from the building site. By breaking up the intervention volumes, visitors from each side are offered unique views of the school and landscape beyond.




The plaza is split into two parts. The first serves as the primary public plaza that is accessible through existing circulation. The second is a smaller, semi-public space framed between the school’s buildings that are mainly used by the student community.









primary public plaza secondary plaza for school classroom building library and cafe administration main rehearsal hall bridge steps/seats informal stage


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The plazas are separated though a subtle shift in elevation on an axis where an old aqueduct wall stands. The wall is taken down to offer views to the sea from the plaza and the split in elevation marks its presence.

Roof Plan


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entry informal classroom bathrooms offices classroom stairs to second level plaza

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The primary system of construction employed is a custom post and beam system comprised of simple elements common to the village such as wooden panels and corrugated steel. The primary climatic response of the building is shading and cross ventilation. The walls, comprised of corrugated steel, peel and shift on their southern facade in order to direct natural light into lower and inner spaces while the custom curtain wall is well perforated to allow breezes to penetrate through.

Classroom Building: Level 1 Plan


Classroom Building Section 1


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informal classroom offices classroom classroom classroom classroom

From left to right: Planks of wood are cut at an angle and stacked to form the basic structural element of all beams and columns. The wood is subdivided with offset curves to allow for dimensional changes as well as for added stability. Two or more wooden elements can be fastened to steel channels to create a simple beam/column. The steel resists axial loads while the wood resists lateral loads. The resulting elements are combined to create the post and beam system for the school.

Agave Structure Biomimetic Inspirations

The structure of the building is derived from the leaf of the agave plant. The ‘V’ form of the leaf offers the plant structural stability as well as providing a method of transporting water. In addition, its load carrying members are located at the perifery, opening up the interior to carry water and nutrients. The structure in the intervention works on similar principles. The primary structural element is a V shaped ‘leaf’ that tapers. This element is composed of layered sheets of wood held by steel. The wood helps the member act as a beam, allowing it to withstand lateral forces. At the same time the steel allows the same member to be used as a column, allowing it to withstand axial forces. Near the roof the beams act as channels to collect rainwater and direct it to other beams that act as structural ‘spouts’ that cascade water into the plaza’s pools. “Autonomy is embodied in the revealed ligaments of the construction and in the way in which the syntactical form of the structure explicitly resists the action of gravity.” (Frampton, Towards a Critical Regionalism, 27)

From left to right: The post and beam system supports the corrugated steel system that serves as the primary wall system in the school. A steel channel holds the corrugated steel and is welded to the steel channels of the columns. The post and beam system also holds the custom curtain wall system. The curtain wall is comprised of triangulated forms that allow it to be structurally independent. Comprised of wooden rods fastened with steel ball joints, the curtain wall accommodates glass panels and louvers.

Ski Orlando

Downtown Orlando, Florida

Graduate Studio 1 Fall 2011 | 12 Weeks Critic: Professor Lee-Su Huang

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Form Development and Program Distribution Ski Orlando is a multi-use megastructure at the heart of downtown Orlando that serves not only as a train station but also as a hotel with ski slopes, an ice rink and other commercial facilities. The form of the construct is governed by three points on the site from which cooncentric cirlces are drawn

The building is situated on the historic Church Street and adjacent to the Amway Center, City Hall and various commercial, residential and hospitality buildings. The cirlces determine the three slopes, each with its own ‘start’ location and difficulty.

Given the unique multi-program nature of the site, the problem neccessitated the need for a construct that can accommodate the various cycles that take place: work day/night, weekend/ weekday, game day, etc. The slopes combine into one large slope that terminates at an underground ice rink visible from the public square above. SITE PLAN 1. Amway Center 2. Interstate I-4 3. City Hall 4. Parking Garage 5. Hotel Volume 6. Plaza 1 7. Plaza 2 8. Commecial Zone

By opening up a plaza and providing activites such as skiing, skating, restaurants, shopping and a hotel; the site remains activated through various cycles. At the North of the site the hotel spans accross the tracks and can be accessed from either side. The commercial programs ground the Southern end of the site

The construct consists of 3 primary elements: the plaza, the ski slopes and the hotel. The slopes were determined first and the hotel and other programs organized around them

Access to each slope occurs at public spaces that are embedded in the hotel. These spaces house restauants, a spa and observation areas; some accessible to the public and some only to hotel guests.


Hotel Access

Public Plazas are accessible from various avenues including the Staples Center, the train station and City Hall

The base of the hotel is accessible from either plaza


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Section through Plaza Light Wall Ice Rink Ski Slopes Plaza Hotel Lobby

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Light Wall

Commercial interests are located on the southern end of the block. The buildings shade, frame and activate the public space between them.

A vertical splice through the hotel block allows for the ski slope to penetrate the volume, introduce light into inner spaces and organize semi-public spaces located throughout the volume

Light Wall The Light Wall is a tapered cut that runs the entire height of the hotel. Its form is governed by the same geometric principles that govern the site and thus seamlessly integrates with the hotel volume, ski slopes and public spaces. The Light Wall serves as an opening for skiers to ski through the buildings as well as supporting vertical circulation and allowing light to penetrate through to the inner volumes.

Ski slope as it cuts through the hotel via the light wall. Skiers passing over the bridge get a glimpse of the slope they are about to ride.

Circles that guide the ski slopes generate the initial geometry that defines the light wall. This geometry is then tapered and scaled to be incorporated into the hotel volume.

Institute of Fine Arts

Reviving History Through Constructed Itineraries Downtown Charleston, South Carolina

Studio 6 Spring 2011 | 12 Weeks Critic: Professor Stephen Belton

Charleston House

Re-interpreting the historic typology

The Charleston Institute of Fine Arts is a construct that allows visitors to experience the various spatial conditions that are characteristic of the city. The institute features print and photographic art exhibits in its gallery as well as a cafe, a lecture hall, and library. In addition,there are studios where residents and visitors can interact with current students. The institute takes after the typical Charleston house, offering a building that is naturally ventilated with gardens and views to the exterior. Like the Charleston house it blurs the border between exterior and interior space as well as that between public and private. The building also challenges the conventional notion of servant and served spaces by integrating both within spaces of similar readings. The institute is located opposite a prominent Church and adjacent to a graveyard and a six story garage; a complex yet rich site within downtown Charleston. The building holds the corner of the block and invites visitors through Church street, carrying their eyes to St.Philips Church. The building, respecting its neighbor’s views and borders, takes on a form that serves as an extension of both the green space to its south and the paved space to its north.

From left to right: Philadelphia Alley: On this path one experiences open space through a purely visual experience. The first image is that of a private garden visible through the the properties gates. The second is that of the parish’s lawn, visible only through a small opening in the bushes. The Charleston House: The Charleston House consists typically of an indoor residence, an outdoor garden and piazzas that are outdoor yet give users privacy as they enjoy thier gardens. The gardens can also be enjoyed from the street, where it is visible though gaps in the high walls. The space between the garden and residence remains undefined as it is neither indoor nor outdoor, private yet somewhat public in nature.

Three primary forms of spaces exist in the city. Public Space - streets, parks, alleys, churches Visual Threshold Spaces - Spaces that cannot be publicly accessed but can be enjoyed visually such as private gardens and graveyards. Private Undefined Space - Most Charleston houses feature an interstitial indoor/outdoor space from which the garden is enjoyed. This space allows privacy in a dense urban setting.

The Gateway Walk In 1930 the Garden Club of Charleston created a path that ran through some of the oldest public spaces in the city. Much of the path is lost today due to the construction of parking lots and other structures.

site Analysis

Spatial conditions

The following diagrams illustrate the unique spatial conditions observed in downtown Charleston. The purpose of the analysis was to determine key factors that the construct would react to, respect, and integrate within itself.

A combined abstraction of the two maps demonstrates the richness of the quality of space around the proposed sites. Ralationships between major axis as well propinquity between spaces can be clearly observed. Diagram showing proximity of spatial conditions from building site. Spaces are plotted relative to their radial distance from the site.

The construct takes into account the spatial conditions from the site analysis and is designed to be a contemporary extension of the Gateway Walk. Circ u e ur ct Le hen ti c K n i m Ad

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ry Four islands ground the lle construct Ga to the site. They anchor dthe corner io u St o and allow for the surrounding di public space to extendStuinward.

The islands are assigned programs. Some programs are contained within the islands while others break away.

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Circulation is in the form of a prescriptive path, taking one through the construct around the islands.

On this path one experiences the spaces inside and outside the islands as well as various framed views throughout the site.

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1. Main Entry

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The open plaza serves as an extension of the public street and invites visitors to the entry stair. 2. Lobby The glass enclosed lobby serves as the formal entry to the construct and directs users to the main stair that takes one to the graveyard observation area. Here visitors get a view of the spaces experienced through the original Gateway Walk. 3. Corner







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Level 2

The corner island is enclosed in channel glass, setting it apart from its neighbors and anchoring the corner. The translucent surface allows for an intermediatory level of interaction between inside and outside as well as filtering light into the studios.



4. Garden


The building is set back to respect the view of the church from the adjacent residential building. This allows for an open park that serves as an extension of the green space of the Graveyard.


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5. Graveyard The Gateway Walk passed through the graveyard on the way to St.Philip’s Church. Here the path breaks towards the Institute that enriches the spaces experienced on the path

Level 3

Level 4 7 Studios 8 Parking Entry 9 Upper Studios 10 Private Garden 11 Observation Deck 12 Reading Room

13 Library 14 Cafe 15 Observation Deck 16 Gallery 17 Library Extension 18 Theatre



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Plan and section of the Lake Mary station Plaform and Tracks Ampitheater Stage Ampitheater Seating Ticket booth / Restrooms / Restaurant (commercial) Ticket Booth / Rest rooms (residential) Performance preperation / storage Commuter path to platform

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The light rail station at Lake Mary is composed of two parts: a linear ‘bar’ that serves as the formal station for commuters; and a sunken ampitheatre that serves as an entertainment space for those waiting for their train. The Horological Machine consists of mechanically operated platform modules whose movement can indicate the direction and time of arrival of an arriving train, thus providing a qualitative, not quantitative, measure of time. Thus the platform is temporal as it can only be occupied when a train is present. The linear elements that encapsulate the platform serve as a brise soleil for commuters as well as elements of the clock.






In this way the platform is a performative sculpture that serves a backdrop for ampitheater performances as well as alerting commuters of the time and direction of the next train.

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Horological Machine

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Lake Mary, Florida

Graduate Studio 1 Fall 2011 | 3 Weeks Critic: Professor Lee-Su Huang

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Situated on the corner of a block the Gainesville Bookstore faces an open garden on one side and storefronts on the other. Basic sunscreen/ bookshelf formed by horizontal strips. The library peels off the surface to expose the entry and cafe on the lower level. Administration and storage moves underground while bookstacks are spread out throughout the lower and upper levels. The spaces are organized around a central circulation core. Due to the lack of space in the 50ft X 100ft plot, the utilization of multi-purpose spaces was essential. Areas of high density established. For example, the observation area doubles as a lecture space where the adjacent ramp cycles between seating and circulation. Another example is the skin, which serves as a brise soleil, book storage and reading rooms all at the same time.

Strips move away to open up coves. MULTI PURPOSE SKIN The skin on the upper levels is designed to perform three functions: -Filter sunlight into the building -Perform as bookshelves -Serve as reading spaces The strips taper allowing for books to be placed with the now smaller spaces. They react to the interior program and create reading spaces as neccessary. The skin is composed of horizontal strips that are spaced far enough to serve as bookshelves. At areas where there are reading rooms, the strips taper and ‘bubble’ away from each other to open up spaces of varying scale. The thickness of the strips also increases allowing for varying seating/ reading postures. The strips increases in length laterally, allowing for varying degrees of occupancy and reading postures

Books and Nooks Downtown Gainesville, Florida

Studio 6 Spring 2011 | 3 Weeks Critic: Professor Stephen Belton

Visitors can select books and sit within the shelves to read them.

The objective of the project is to design a cultural forum within a 50’ x 50’ x 50’ envelope atop the Gainesborough Studios building located on Central Park South, NYC. The Indian Cultural Forum provides New Yorkers an opportunity to experience and learn traditional Indian dance and music. The forum offers classes in traditional dance and traditional instruments in the dance studio. There is a performance theatre and a rehearsal area for performers. The space of the dance studio bleeds into the cafe above it, offering diners a live source of music while the observation deck offers views of Central Park. In addition there are private spaces for offices, conference rooms and private events. Classical Indian buildings are heavily governed by geometry. The square, triangle and hexagon play an important part in the design of the plans and sections of these buildings. Drawing from this method, the section of the Indian Cultural Forum is primarily governed by two intersecting triangles.

Indian Cultural Center

The Cultural Forum Project allowed for experimentation with skin and envelope details. Light-filtering, light- reflecting, and sound absorbing techniques were explored in the design for the skins.

Manhattan New York City, New York

Studio 2 Spring 2010 | 10 Weeks Critic: Professor Donna Cohen

Above: Light study through a section using pencil and watercolor on paper Left: Section Model. The various programs in the public half are organized through strict geometric rules, allowing spaces to skew and stretch into the tight 50ft cube

Light reflection

Light filtering

Light shafts lined with reflective material allow light to travel into darker spaces in the forum. The technique is used in the theatre, allowing sunlight to reflect onto the stage through the shafts in an otherwise dark and closed-off space.

The skin above the cafe comprises several thin angled planes. These planes allow light to penetrate at only certain angles thus changing the affect of light in the space throughout the day.

Above: The dance studio receives ample light from its large south facing geometric apertures. Bottom Left: Test model demonstrating the use of relective materials to carry lgiht to dark spaces, such as the theater Bottom Right: Angled planes change the way light affects the space througout the day

Luminaire Pop Burger New York City, New York

Environmental Technology 2 Fall 2011 | 2 Weeks Critic: Professor Thomas Smith

Pop Burger is a unique combination of fast food restaurant, bar and lounge housed in a three story building right across FAO Schwarz in NYC. The first level is the restaurant, featuring a long perforated metellic ‘menu’ which is backlight. One level up takes you to the bar and another to the lounge/pool tables. The facade of the building a rectilinear gid populated with hemispherical glass that punctures the skin. The proposed luminaire lights the main bar on the second floor and like the restaurant itself features many unusual traits. When viewing from afar one sees a perforated red box that glows white. Upon closer inspection one notices that light projeced onto the bar is not white but rather hues of pink, purple or teal depending on the combination of bulbs. Furthermore, the shadows created by the luminaire are of different colors; thus introducing an element of surprise to an otherwise ordinary bar luminaire.

Antique camera lenses with different focal distances

Drawing from the building, the ‘skin’ consists of a perforated metal sheet that is painted red. Similar to the facade it is puncured with circular apertures that allow for diffused light to penetrate through. A combination of white and colored compact fluorescent lamps are used. White light is allowed to diffuse through the sides and reflect off the top while colored light is focused via 2 large lenses aquired from a vintage camera onto the bar top below. The red skin extends below these lenses to frame the light onto the bar surface. The user can change the colors of the lights as required to create a range of background colors and shadows using color theory. For example, using purple and yellow bulbs creates a pink light with purple and yellow shadows.

Witters 1st Place

Team Members: Tim Beecken Darryl Ditzel (Landscape Architecture) Max Gooding Jenna Lychako (Urban Planning) Brittaney Ross

Downtown Gainesville, Florida

Competition Spring 2012 | 24 Hours Critic: Director Martin Gold

Live, Work, Play Chestnut Grove, a mixed use development in downtown Gainesville helps to urbanize, activate and enrich public and private life through densification. High-density housing, recreation and retail offer productive and flexible spaces on every level; from private gardens for each resident, to much needed amenities for the community such as retail and public gardens. Chestnut Groves’s housing incorporates several sustainable strategies such as optimized floor plates that offer each resident at least 4 hours of sunlight as well as private outdoor gardens and semi-private communal spaces that facilitate natural ventilation. North East Corner Locating the courtyard on the northern edge provides for a moment for individuals to relax. The space provides a relief to the block and allows the entry from the parking garage to be exposed and easily accessible.

South West Corner The ‘bridge’ on the south western facades looms over the historical buildings; this element is the most prominent and most metaphorical aspect of the project. Uniting the commercial and the residential towers with a bridge containing components relating to a healthy body encourages occupants to pursue an active, healthy lifestyle.

Plan: Plate 4

Plan: Plate 1

Private and semi-private garden spaces.

Going beyond the required mandate that only some of the units have acess to an outdoor space, keeping social equity as a driver, we ensured that every dwelling has access to an outdoor space that can be used as a garden or other outdoor activities. Four dwellings are limited per floor to promote social interaction through integrated semiprivate spaces. The floorplates are optimized to ensure that each dwelling receives at least 4 hours of sunlight daily. The dispersed floorplates also facilitate in natural ventialtion, further reducing energy costs.

Azhar Khan 386.383.8018

Architecture Portfolio  

Selected Projects from Graduate and Undergraduate work at the University of Florida

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