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CORCO P A V I L I O N First semester of second year Professor Humberto CavallĂ­n Within the site of the Commonwealth Oil Refining Company (CORCO) and in front of the primary offices of Union Carbide Carbon Company in PeĂąuelas, Puerto Rico, students were assigned to design a petroleum pavilion for the study, research, and exhibition of the negative environmental effects of the petroleum refining process in the area. The students were supplied a strict program with specific square footage and were required to incorporate an element of the refineries in their design, either a smoke pipe, or a spherical waste storage container. The program included a library, a media center, an auditorium, five offices, two conference rooms, a reconfigurable multiuse hall, a reception area, a mechanical room, and living quarters for three persons. The original project was produced entirely by hand; three dimensional renderings and CAD drawings were developed after the fact as part of the transitional process to digital media.





M O D I S MODULAR DISPLAY SYSTEM First semester of third year Professor Maria Isabel Oliver As part of a competition sponsored by Junco Steel Corporation and the Colegio de Arquitectos y Arquitectos Paisajistas de Puerto Rico (CAAPPR), students were to design new display fixtures for the use of the CAAPPR. The units were to be made in the most part with Junco Steel products. The budget set for these systems was $2500, was not to measure more than seven feet tall indoors and eight feet tall outdoors, plus a number of other basic parameters. The units were to be easy to mount and dismount by a single person, and were to have a storage system designed for it as well. The piece exhibited here has a total cost of $199.88 in workmanship and materials, and 12 units could be built within budget and sparing about one hundred dollars. The project was completed in pairs, and all major design considerations for this unit were contemplated in this manner. The work was divided; I completed the board design, the three-dimensional computer model, and resolved the design for the joints and connections using the three-dimensional model, while my partner completed a required set of CAD drawings and the physical scale model necessary for the competition.






First semester of third year Professor Maria Isabel Oliver The major project of third year was the design of a residence. This residence was to be the home of 4 people who the student would create -- personalities, relationships, needs, and all. From the persons fashioned, the student was then to decide on a suitable program and create a conceptual diagram that would guide the design process. The student was to design on an ideal site with specific dimensions and was to adhere to the state zoning laws. The Davila Residence houses a family of four: a neurosurgeon, his wife (a writer), and his two teenage children. A busy but loving family, the conceptual diagram tried to express the desire to create a home where each person had their own space, yet also had ample space to interact. For the final project, the home was to be placed in a real site in the municipality of Caguas. This residence was placed in a mostly level site, and therefore suffered no more changes than a shortening of the vertical circulation into stairs to accomodate itself in the site. This project was developed at length, having completed electrical and structural plans for the residence. For the sake of clarity and conciseness, only the architectural plans are shown.






Second semester of third year Professor Oscar Marty The final project of third year was the completion of a large-scale, low cost, high density multifamily housing development. Using a prefab system developed by our own professor, the project was also entered at the end of the semester in the Concrete Thinking for a Sustainable World Student Design Competition, sponsored by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA). This project took up most of the semester and was worked in groups of six. As in all group projects, major design decisions were made with input from everyone, and the work and more specific design considerations were distributed amongst participants. This group was divided in half, three students working the condominium and the parking facilities, and three students developing the walkups. I participated in the subgroup that developed the condominium, with my specific duties being the development of the 3 and 4 bedroom apartments, the development of the lobby and recreational areas, photo-manipulation of renders, and the construction of the three-dimensional model of the condominium itself. The site of the project was the same site used for the previous semester’s single family residence project.





MIXED USE First semester of fourth year Professor Javier Isado In less than 30 days, students were to complete a design for an urban site in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico for a mixed use development based on a predetermined program with minimum square footage. This design was to be considered in the annual competition run by the firm Sierra Cardona Ferrer for the students of fourth year. A development of over one million square feet, this particular design is composed of four buildings. The office building that makes up most the urban wall stands on 4 levels of underground parking, whose ample entrance also serves as the entrance for the commercial loading dock located at the far west of the site. The six-level building also has a requisite colonnade that borders a first level that serves as a food court for the development, with ample space for several restaurants and space for outdoor seating. The remaining three buildings stand on 3 levels of underground parking and have 2 levels of commercial space, with the exception one building that uses its 2 levels of commercial space for four requisite movie theaters. Each of these three radial buildings has 10, 14, and 18 residential levels respectively. Due to the nature of the birthing concept, the protective centralization and organization of urban public space, the development has three areas of ample planned communal area, and a faรงade system that functions to accentuate the spiraling of the building and the gathering up of the public space. This project was selected as one of the 9 finalists of the competition.






EMERGENCY AREA EXPANSION Second semester of fourth year Professor Elio Martinez-Joffre The Carolina Regional Hospital of the University of Puerto Rico, due to the abundant traffic in its emergency units, has been in need of an expansion for quite some time, the first proposal having been presented in 1998 by the firm Sierra Cardona Ferrer and denied due to a lack of funds. The Community Design Studio, a community outreach program that has formed a part of the UPR School of Architecture’s curriculum since 1995, took the previous proposals, the conditions of the context, and the increased requirements given by the hospital administration and produced a solution that is as functional as well as cost-effective. It is the objective of the Studio to provide a viable solution that can be the start of serious discussions leading to the betterment of the facilities, and therefore the enhancement of the assets of the University of Puerto Rico. This project was completed in approximately two and a half months, in a group of seven people. Most final design decisions were reached by four persons, myself included. My particular responsibilities in production laid in the completion and rendering of the architectural drawings, final presentation boards, and the preparation of the site in the scale model. This project was taken to the UPR Presidency for presentation to the university’s president, and the board of trustees. This initial successful presentation triggered a second invitation to the remaining members of the group to present the project once again at the Presidency two years later for the benefit of the hospital’s administration, as part of the decision-making process for investments.


The remodeled hospital facilities are designed to address a series of basic and important concerns essential to the planning of a fully functional hospital. Each component of the emergency area is conceptualized as an independent body with a clear nucleus, maximizing low use of personnel as well as maintaining clear visibility of each patient. Cleanliness of circulation is key for hectic spaces such as this emergency area. This proposal therefore maintained a clear, straightforward “T� distribution of interior circulation, minimizing confluence and facilitating access of certain key areas as easily as possible. Cost-efficient design is paramount in this design strategy. The hospital is granted all previously requested facilities and more, while simultaneously maximizing the available space and minimizing invasion in areas that would require complicated and costly design solutions. 28

Given that the hospital for logical reasons cannot cease to utilize the emergency area of its facilities for expansion purposes, the construction phases of the expansion are thought out to be as minimally invasive to the hospital as possible. As illustrated above, the first phase will establish a temporary alternate entrance through a series of conference rooms and offices closest to the main faรงade of the emergency area, whose functions will be relocated to readily available, unused spaces the hospital is reserving for these specific purposes. In the second phase, construction will begin for the expansion portion of the design, and when this expansion is completed, the space it provides will hold all current activities while the existing portion of the emergency area to be remodeled shall be sealed off and completed in phase three. Communication between the hospital and the new expansion shall be maintained through the temporary entrance provided in phase one. 29






SANTURCE SUR: LA CORONA First semester of fifth year Professors Javier de Jesus and Abel Misla As part of IMDICE, a design studio dedicated to discover the possibilities of depressed sectors of Puerto Rico, RENUEVA was formed as a viability study for the revitalization of the area known as La Corona in south Santurce, PR. The project was completed in a group of three people, where I had a key leadership role. The area of La Corona, although in a very negative urban state, was classified as having one key virtue, being the home of the Doctors’ Center Hospital. This hospital was identified along with several other hospitals in the area which formed a visible network that could be economically and urbanely exploitable. The Doctors’ Center Hospital could be an important player in this network given that it’s the only hospital in the San Juan area with considerable room to grow. MB Holdings, the proprietor of the old Corona factory grounds, showed considerable interest in becoming involved in this plan as a major investor in the new urban strategy. The furthest maximization for the area was sought out through careful and innovative consideration of zoning codes and special planning codes for the area. Extensive research on the area was conducted, through the study of rent rates, real estate comparables, physical land characteristics, open cases in the planning authorities, and many more considerations. The end strategy produced a site-specific growth plan, considering both urban planning and economic viability, and specific projects to complete these plans, which were briefly explored at the end of the semester as individual projects. This initiative induced the Doctors’ Center Hospital and MB Holdings, the mayor influences in the area, to create an organization to make this plan a reality, known as the Santurce Consortium.








RELIFE OF TERMINAL A Second semester of fifth year Professor Francisco J. Rodriguez, Dean of the UPR School of Architecture This design is a part of an international competition for the redesign of the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport Terminal A sponsored by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), Dallas - Ft. Worth International Airport (DFW), American Airlines, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and Corgan Associates, Inc. The project submitted competed against groups from over 150 schools from around the world, and was chosen as the third place winner, and consequently published within the annual project-specific publications of the ACSA. The award was also later recognized through a written proclamation by the Secretary of State Fernando J. Bonilla, in a congratulatory ceremony held in La Fortaleza, the Governor’s Mansion. The design that is presented here arises from a preoccupation for the environment, for visual impact, and a respect towards the original architecture of the terminal. Careful attention has been paid towards the requests that have been outlined, including rules published in the competition brochure and supplemental guidelines found in the included resources. Considerable effort has been made to modernize and clarify functional order in the terminal, as well as incorporating sustainable design, optimizing efficiency and concessions, incorporating the Skylink train system, and integrating current and emerging security requirements as outlined. The result is a very appealing, very realistic, and very constructible design that should suit the needs of DFW International Airport and American Airlines to the fullest extent possible.












US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY SOLAR DECATHLON First semester of sixth year Professor Francisco Gutierrez The CASH project (Caribbean Affordable Solar House) was developed as part of the biannual participation of the University of Puerto Rico in the Solar Decathlon sponsored by the Department of Energy of the United States. Twenty schools are involved in this competition, and it is their mission to create an efficient structure that will be evaluated in ten different evaluations during the course of its stay in Washington D.C. The UPR’s house is the only house that will have to survive a sea voyage to arrive at the competition grounds, and this has made its design much more interesting and complex. The semester in which I participated had as its mission the completion of the construction drawings for the house, to be sent at the end of the semester for evaluation to the competition committees. CASH’s design was very much schematic at this stage, and many elements required thorough reevaluation and problem solving. My main responsibility became the house’s deck, and in the course of the semester, aside from being in charge of producing the 20-plus page set of construction drawings and the three-dimensional model of this structure, I also took on the complete redesign of the structure from traditional wood joists to steel, and the bordering planters, closet, and ramp, making them as portable and easy to assemble as possible. Included in this compendium are selected pages of the final drawings, along with visualization and final perspectives.







AN ANGEL’S DREAM Second semester of sixth year Professor Elio Martinez-Joffre Mr. Roberto Ocaña, president of the corporation El Sueño de un Ángel, Inc came to the University of Puerto Rico’s Community Design Studio for aid in the creation of a master plan for a recreational center for incapacitated and elderly people. Mr. Ocaña as part of his corporation had acquired 20 acres of land in the Tortugueros sector of the municipality of Vega Baja towards the end of October 2007 from the Department of Sports and Recreation of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. The state passed these lands to the corporation to develop within its directives, and El Sueño de un Ángel, Inc has decided to recommend to the state a center where people with limitations can have a dignified existence with opportunities for development and recreation. The proposal illustrated here was directed towards the idea of a center that could be economically self-sustainable and built in a series of phases. The proposed center would function as a physical therapy and rehabilitation center to pull in funds, doubling the required square footage for the medical area that was initially proposed from last semester’s case study. This proposal was completed in a group of two people, where all decisions and tasks were shared equally, including the drawing and development of the built environment. For final presentations I was mainly in charge of the polishing and rendering of architectural drawings, and the presentation materials, while my partner managed the three-dimensional model and renderings.









ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE Second semester of sixth year Final Capstone Project Professor Elio Martinez-Joffre Professors Jaime Bofill and Marta Calero came to the University of Puerto Rico’s Community Design Studio mid-semester to solicit aid with the expansion of a gazebo they had on a 5-acre piece of land they own in the municipality of Cayey. Both professors at the University of Puerto Rico, the couple also gives classes on alternative medicine and nature-based ways of life on their spare time, classes which they offer in the aforementioned site in Cayey. Rather than offer the couple a mere expansion to a 250square foot gazebo, my partner and I took on the job as our final Capstone Project, and designed the couple a master plan for the site, where they could develop a full-fledged university in phases, complete with visitor housing and orchards. As the couple described their teaching methods, they expressed a need to gravitate towards multiuse rooms rather than traditional classrooms, linked to laboratory kitchens for food and medicinal preparation. They expressed a want for this project to be as eco-friendly as possible, incorporating composting toilets and recollection of rain water among other considerations. The project was completed in approximately two months, interchanging design responsibilities to assure involvement in all aspects of the project, and dividing all tasks equally.













Portfolio of Cumulative Works  

Selected Projects from 2003 - 2009

Portfolio of Cumulative Works  

Selected Projects from 2003 - 2009