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REDISCOVERING THE ART OF LISTENING TO SPACES

Olivier Jamin Changeart Master of Architecture - Thesis Proposal Thesis Seminar Instructor: Ian Taberner Thesis Studio Instructor: Kevin Losso

Boston Architectural College November 28, 2012


TABLE OF CONTENTS

THESIS OUTLINE PROPOSAL

Thesis Summary Abstract Thesis Statement Parti and Conceptual Model Methods of Inquiry Terms of Criticism Building Systems Integration Statement Site Statement Program Statement Case Study Analysis Sketch Problem Annotated Bibliography

04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 16 18

Site plan Site photos Topography Natural and constructed features Direction, windspeed and sun diagram Microclimate information Sun/shadow study Pedestrian radius Site Observations - Diagrams Adjacent land use Summary conclusion

Codes Zoning Report Narrative

Building Code Report Accessibility report

Cultural Context Historic Context

Architectural Context Demographic Context Political Issues

Interview #1 & #2

Quai Branly Museum Guggenheim Museum & Banq Restaurant The Sound Lounge Youth Center

36 37 38

40 42 43 44

48 49 50 51

Future State

Issues Goals

Cost Evaluation 24 25 26 27 27 28 29 30 31 32 34 35

46 47

Precedents

Existing State

Mission and Goals Mission

PROGRAMMING p.21

Site: Physical Description and Analysis Site location

Informational Context Client’s profile

Building footprint Massive studies Spatial components & SF Total construction cost

Bibliography

56 57 58 59

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Zoning Map Parcels Info Contour Map Interview #1 Interview #2

66 67 68 69 70

Appendix

54 54 55

Resume

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Thesis Summary

Abstract

Contact Informations Olivier Jamin Changeart

Thesis Title and Sub Title

Architecture for the Ears

Email: olivier.changeart@the-bac.edu

Cell: 857-207-9811

Rediscovering the Art of Listening to Spaces ABSTRACT The purpose of this thesis is to use the physical properties of sound to engage the hearing sense in every aspect of the program. Ultimately, the final design should foster auditory interactions between spaces and their occupants and also increase opportunities for direct social engagement. My program consists of designing a building that serves the needs of the ProArts consortium as well as offering various facilities for the students or services that are consistently missing from these institutions. The site I chose is considerably prominent, combining a rich urban and retail environment with an easy access to urban transportation encourages a wide mix of people to wander around the site. The Art Center will offer a unique opportunity to foster cultural and artistic exchanges between students, arts educators, local residents and visitors as well as to providing enrichment, support and growth for the local artists community.

THESIS STATEMENT Sounds approach us and our ears receive them. Sound has the power to change the character of a space we occupy. It has the ability to change our behavior or moods, and to influence our social environment. Sounds stimulate emotions, communicate aural information and build social relationships. Sound is everywhere but invisible. However in architecture, the natural ability to perceive space by listening is rarely recognized. As a consequence, acoustic design has become irrelevant to most architects, engineers and designers. Throughout my thesis, I want to engage the public through the prism of aural architecture, using sound as an ornament that contributes to the overall experience of a space. I want to explore how sound can affect the way people relate to each other and to architecture.

‘Sound comes to circulate through every day life, and acts as a medium for personal and social transformation’.1 The relationship between sound and spatial design is one that is deeply rooted in history but since sight is our primary sense, the visual hegemony of architecture has relegated aural architecture to an epiphenomenon. These two aspects should work in parallel in every phases of the design process; they are complementary and should reinforce each other.

By adding aural richness to spaces, architecture has the ability to trigger a wide range of acoustic stimuli, to finally bring out our auditory spatial awareness. The purpose of this thesis is to use the physical properties of sound to engage the hearing sense in every aspect of the program. Ultimately, the final design should foster auditory interactions between spaces and their occupants and also increase opportunities for direct social engagement. The Pro-Arts consortium (ProArts) is a group of six neighboring institutions of higher education in the Boston area dedicated to the visual and performing arts, whose mission is to promote the interconnectivity of the arts through expanded opportunities for its members and for the community.

The consortium allows students to share resources and also to cross-register for additional liberal arts courses at other music, art and liberal arts schools in Boston. Regular events are organized throughout the year - lecture, musical performance, visual art... - but there is no dedicated space to bring the students together. My program consists of designing a building that serves the needs of the consortium as well as offering various facilities for the students or services that are consistently missing from these institutions.

The site I chose is considerably prominent and is centrally located in Boston, where Massachusetts Avenue and Boylston Street intersect. This unique location, combining a rich urban and retail environment with an easy access to urban transportation encourages a wide mix of people to wander around the site. Therefore, the Art Center will offer a unique opportunity to foster cultural and artistic exchanges between students, arts educators, local residents and visitors as well as to providing enrichment, support and growth for the local artists community.

By intentionally engaging the hearing sense, it will facilitate the way we can control and improve our environment and gain deeper and more meaningful moments about the space we inhabit.

METHODS OF INQUIRY

- Create a sound library with various samples of daily activities, ambient sounds or acoustic responses of a space, and ask people to react and express their feelings. A questionnaire could also ask them to associate a sound with a particular space/ building/ professional situation. - Establish a classification of materials or products with their acoustic properties in order to start creating a relationship between textures of a surface (or layers of materials) and their impact on absorbing, reflecting, transmitting or diffracting a sound wave. - Based on my program, make diagrams or models which emphasize on the aural experiences I want to achieve, inside and outside my building. - Create a list of all the sounds /noises that participate to the soundscape of my site. Precise for each of them their location, directivity, range of frequencies and sound pressure level. Then decide whether or not I want to preserve, encourage, multiply, amplify, muffle or eliminate each of these sonic phenomenon. - Do research on air rights above the Mass Pike. Look at precedents in Boston.

TERMS OF CRITICISM

- Is my design successful for being impervious to noise (i.e. having a building protected from vibrations and noise annoyances) while being welcoming and visually appealing? - Can I bring tangible evidences of the acoustic properties of the spaces I created, using simulation software to calculate the reverberation time of a space, to create a sound map of the site or to calculate the Sound Trans-mission Coefficient of a specific partition/wall? - Do acoustic treatments provide an ideal sonic environment for each of the activities happening in my program? - Do spaces divert users onto unexpected aural experiences by fostering auditory interactions between them and their occupants?

BUILDING TYPOLOGY

Educational Building comprising of the following programs: classes, exhibit space, performance space, staff offices and a cafĂŠ. Approximate size: 35,000 sq.ft.

Listening to space

SITE LOCATION

The site is located at 1081 -1085 Boylston Street in Boston, MA, near the convergence of three thriving and active Boston neighborhoods: the Back Bay, Fenway and Kenmore Square.

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(1) LaBelle, Brandon. Acoustic Territories: Sound Culture and Everyday Life. New York, NY: THe Continuum International Publishing Group Inc, 2010

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Thesis Statement

PARTI AND CONCEPTUAL MODEL

Sounds approach us and our ears receive them.

Impervious to Sound

Sound has the power to change the character of a space we occupy. It has the ability to change our behavior or moods, and to influence our social environment. Sounds stimulate emotions, communicate aural information and build social relationships. Sound is everywhere but invisible. However in architecture, the natural ability to perceive space by listening is rarely recognized. Over-stimulated by a constant background of various sound sources, we lost our ability to listen to our sonic environment. In addition, the growing technologies in western society created devices, such as smartphone, that encourage aural isolation and disengage users from space.

As a result, distraction and isolation from the local environment both decreases opportunities for direct social engagement and deprives people of any sensory experience. In architecture, the devaluation of the art of listening directly translated to a poor or even absent acoustic design. As a consequence, it has become irrelevant to most architects, engineers and designers. Throughout my thesis, I want to engage the public through the prism of aural architecture, using sound as an ornament that contributes to the overall experience of a space. I want to explore how sound can affect the way people relate to each other and to architecture.

Porous to people

This party represents the most challenging issue that I will have to deal with: how my design can successfully create a sound barrier from the aggressive urban soundscape, while being welcoming?

By playing with the geometry and the materiality of the spaces, I want to design specific aural attributes that could be experienced not only by the users of the building but also by a large public.

The site is located downtown Boston, with a constant noise pollution. This thesis will be an opportunity to deeply study the way I can use the envelope of the building as a filter, that would transform the cacophony and chaotic soundscape of the site into a controlled and harmonious sonic environment inside of it. As architecture and technology evolve, I hope that auditory designs will likely become more elaborate, fostering auditory interactions between spaces and their occupants. By intentionally engaging the hearing sense, it will facilitate the way we can control and improve our environment and gain deeper and more meaningful moments about the space we inhabit.

Conceptual Model

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Methods

of

Inquiry

Terms

of

Criticism

Methods of Inquiry #1

Creating a sound library with various samples of daily activities, ambient sounds or acoustic responses of a space, and asking people to react and express their feelings. A questionnaire could also ask them to associate a sound with a particular space/ building/ professional situation. The approach/access to the building through the site participates in our experience as an observer/listener. At some point, I would like to create a striking experience that demonstrates the importance of hearing and how it relates to the visual experience. How would Time Square in New York be perceived if all of sudden sound was turned off, with taxis’ squawks, crowds, street performers and music replaced by silence? Therefore the choice of the site is critical and cannot be in the countryside or in a quiet neighborhood. Silence also participates to the aural richness of a space but why should I create moments of silence and how? Would silence facilitate our experience and understanding of architecture? Methods of Inquiry #2

My final project at the end of these three semesters would be successful if the users of the building as well as random visitors could be persuaded to join the advocates of aural architecture. • Is my design successful at being impervious to noise (i.e. having a building protected from vibrations and noise annoyances) while being welcoming and visually appealing? • Can I bring tangible evidences of the acoustic properties of the spaces I created, using simulation software to calculate the reverberation time of a space, to create a sound map of the site or to calculate the Sound Transmission Coefficient of a specific partition/wall? • Do acoustic treatments provide an ideal sonic environment for each of the activities happening in my program? • Do spaces lead their users to unexpected aural experiences by fostering auditory interactions between them and their occupants?

Establishing a classification of materials or products with their acoustic properties in order to start creating a relationship between textures of a surface (or layers of materials) and their impact on absorbing, reflecting, transmitting or diffracting a sound wave. Thought: is there a collective unconscious which associates the reverberation time of a space with the type of materials used for that space? Methods of Inquiry #3

Based on my program, making diagrams or models which emphasize on the aural experiences I want to achieve, inside and outside my building. Methods of Inquiry #4

Creating a list of all the sounds /noises that participate to the soundscape of my site. Pinpointing for each of them their location, directivity, range of frequencies and sound pressure level. Then I will decide whether or not I want to preserve, encourage, multiply, amplify, muffle or eliminate each of these sonic phenomena.

I need to think about what kind of aural experience I want to achieve outside and inside the building, for what reason and for what purpose. Methods of Inquiry #5

Doing research on air rights above the Mass Pike. Looking at precedents in Boston.

I am thinking of using part of or the entire area above the Turnpike to help muffle the noises of traffic and also to improve the urban streetscapes around the site. This would use an outdoor public space as a way to engage the building with its surrounding.

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Site Statement

Building Systems Integration Statement

Acoustics

Noise pollution is my biggest concern. The urban setting generates constant undesirable sounds that need to be taken into consideration throughout my project.

There are different categories of noise sources that occur around the site: - Street noise from cars, trucks, buses and motorcycle traffic is the major common source of environmental noise nearby the site. In addition to this constant noise background, pedestrians are subjected to random noises like the piercing sound of fire engines or ambulance sirens or to repetitive car horns. - Construction equipment noise can also be a great disturbance and, in spite of being only of temporary concern, it may also have to be considered and mitigated. - Cooling, ventilation and electrical equipment. Mitigating these noises should not be critical since the heavy traffic noise background masks their sound emission. Considering all these potential sound sources, which strategies should I use to avoid noise and vibration transmission inside the building?

The various parts of the program should be thoughtful designed through the lenses of acoustics, since each space will have its own list of requirements and constraints in terms of reverberation, insulation, privacy...

My background in acoustics will certainly help me to find appropriate solutions to prevent exterior sound sources from penetrating through the envelope of the building.

The site is located at 1081-1085 Boylston Street in Boston, MA, near the convergence of three thriving and active Boston neighborhoods: the Back Bay, Fenway and Kenmore Square.

It is surrounded by three circulation paths, two of which happen to have some of the heaviest traffic in town. One is Massachusetts Avenue, which crosses Boston from East to West and provides access to Cambridge through Harvard Bridge. The other one is the Turnpike along with the MBTA’s commuter railroad, running perpendicular to Mass. Ave., more than 15 feet below grade on the West side of the parcels. The third path, Boylston Street, offers an entry to the Back Bay area from the Fenway district. The traffic here can also be dense during a Red Sox game.

Aerial view of the site

The underdeveloped air-right parcels above the Mass Pike create a major edge condition on the West side of the site. This discontinuity in the urban fabric is essentially perceptible to a pedestrian when crossing over the Pike on Mass. Ave. The visual impact of cars and trucks running below our feet, in addition to the sudden increase of traffic noise can elevat stress levels and make traveling along these streets very unpleasant.

Also considering the fact that acoustic comfort should be omnipresent and integrated at each step of the design, I will consider interior finishes, building geometry and duct insulation in order to provide an ideal sonic environment for each of the activities considered in my program.

Geotechnical Conditions - Foundations

A large percentage of the buildable land in Boston, including the area of my site, consists of former low-lying areas that were filled to create more land for an expanding population in the nineteenth century.

Many of the buildings erected a hundred years ago are supported on timber pile foundations. The timber piles have generally performed satisfactorily where the entire pile has remained submerged below groundwater. However, in some areas of Boston, the level of groundwater has dropped, leaving the top of the piles above the water level. This results in deterioration, leading to settling of the buildings.

I will have to do some research on the groundwater levels just below my site; the results will inform how deep I will have to go for the foundations, hopefully not down to the bedrock.

Air pollution

We already mentioned the considerable amount of traffic around the site, which obviously damages the urban air quality. A high concentration of traffic-related air pollutants affects our health and can originate the development of asthmatic/allergic symptoms and respiratory infections. I will need to consider whether or not these external pollutants are significant in terms of their ingress into buildings and whether they would present potential health hazards or, if they would create discomfort for building occupants.

There are two parallel approaches that could help to maintain a good air quality in the building: - Considering the problem at its source, by covering the Turnpike and creating a park where urban vegetation would purify the ambient air. Trees remove pollution by intercepting airborne particles, which are absorbed or retained on the plant surface. We also have to keep in mind that a proper tree placement near buildings is critical to achieving maximum building energy conservation.

- Using ASHRAE recommendations to purify the air inside the building, ensuring adequate ventilation and installing highefficiency air filters.

Site section - Courtesy of the BRA

This constant noise pollution, along with vibration transmissions from the MBTA commuter rail create the ideal conditions I am looking for an opportunity to utilize the noise of the city as a constraint, in order to achieve a relevant contrast with the ambient noise affecting my building. The site has a strategic location among nearby attractions: the Historic Back Bay, the Newbury Street and Boylston Street retail areas, the Prudential Center and Copley Place mixed-use developments, the Hynes Convention Center, the Massachusetts Avenue corridor, Berklee College of Music, Fenway Park, and the Lansdowne Street entertainment area. The Hynes Convention Center T station on the Green Line and a series of bus stops on both sides on Mass. Ave. facilitate easy access to the area by public transit. In addition, a Hubway public bicycle rental station is now located immediately next to the site. The result is a heavy pedestrian activity that makes this part of the city a vibrant district. This unique prominent location, combining a rich urban and retail environment with an easy access to urban transportation encourages a wide mix of people to wander around the site. Air-Rights Air-rights offer important opportunities to fill in gaps in the public realm along both Boylston Street and Massachusetts Avenue, thereby forging stronger connections between the areas of: he Prudential Center and Copley Place, the Back Bay, the Fenway, the Kenmore Square and Massachusetts Avenue areas. Over the years, the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority has sought proposals for the long- term lease and development of land within and air rights over the various parcels between the Hynes Convention Center and Massachusetts avenue. My site is part of the parcel 12 and contains approximately 78,000 sq.ft., consisting of air rights over the Turnpike and the railroad in addition to land areas on both sides of the highway. I am considering covering a part of the Mass Pike to create a pocket park and bring nature close by the building, using transparent screens and additional sound sources to mask the noise from the city. Graphics, maps, pictures, zoning and code analysis for the site can be found in the programming section “Site: site physical description & analysis�, p.42.

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Program Statement

Case Study Analysis The Jewish Museum - Berlin, Germany

Observation

Architect: Daniel Libeskind

One of the distinctive characteristics of the site happens to be its proximity to Boston’s main educational institutions dedicated to the visual and performing arts. Among others, we can cite the Boston Architectural College, the Berklee College of Music, the New England Conservatory and Emerson College.

One effective element of Daniel Libeskind’s Jewish Museum in Berlin is the direction path. The museum was designed to recognize the imprisoned Jews’ experiences during the World War Two. The building forms in a zig-zag pattern and is only accessible from underground. The path takes visitors to void and confused spaces

All these established institutions provide among the best educational programs in their fields in the country. They offer undergraduate or master’s programs with a huge variety of classes. I interviewed an instructor of the Berklee College of Music and he mentioned his regret of a lack of intellectual or cultural exchange between these other nearby schools. Students are subjected to a dense program, with classes sometimes conducted at night or during the weekend. Therefore, they don’t necessarily have the time to explore other artistic disciplines that could broaden their horizons and enrich their education.

And yet, the overall creative process has some common threads between these disciplines, whether it is about designing a building, composing a piece of music or painting. Having a place where students could learn from each other, could share information and integrate knowledge and different modes of thinking from other disciplines would be a unique experience in their education. Program – Pro-Arts Center for the Diversity of the Arts

Aerial view

The Pro-Arts consortium (ProArts), created in 1980, is a group of six neighboring institutions of higher education in the Boston area dedicated to the visual and performing arts, whose mission is precisely to promote the interconnectivity of the arts through expanded opportunities for its members and for the community.

SENSORY EXPERIENCE

I propose to design a building that serves the needs of the consortium and offer to its students various facilities or services that are consistently missing from these individual institutions.

“Entering this uninsulated, non-climate-controlled space, the heavy door closing with a menacing thud, is to experience an instant sense of confinement. The sloped floor has a rough finish, creating a sound like scraping sandpaper as visitors walk about. The acoustics amplify sound, which bounces off the towering, hard surfaces of the angled walls. It is a space calculated to evoke a disconcerting disorientation, emotionally evocative of the symbolic purposes of the museum.”

In a world where media platforms and communication technologies are in almost constant flux, the program will enable students to examine the world across other artistic disciplines that will add depth and intellectual perspective to their studies. Through hands-on art workshops to thought provoking visual arts exhibitions or dynamic performances, the center will serve as a vital resource for discovery, creativity and self-expression. Instructional spaces will offer enduring lessons and will deliver the foundational skills in each discipline to promote the interconnectivity of the arts through expanded opportunities between the students and the community.

Exhibit and performance spaces would give the students opportunities to showcase their work to the public. The location, close to the city’s cultural institutions and to Newbury Street’s vibrant commercial district is favorable for attracting a large number of visitors who would contribute to a lively cultural space. The program will also encourage the incorporation of other facilities for the students, like a gym for instance, which is lacking in all the colleges which are part of the consortium. Financially, the project has to be sustainable. Since there is an existing parking lot right now, I want to provide approximately the same number of parking garage by adding a parking in the basement. Another potential source of revenues would be the incorporation of a small dormitory, providing rooms for artist residents and students (permanent stay) or visiting artists (temporary stay).

Source: Wolf Connie. Daniel Libeskind and the Contemporary Jewish Museum : new Jewish architecture from Berlin to San Francisco. New York, 2008.

Teaching Learning Experiencing Sharing Entertaining

A large part of the building will be open to the public so it becomes a place of interaction and cultural exchanges for the students. Therefore, the building has to be inviting. The way people will access to the building from the adjacent streets will be critical to the success of my thesis. As a matter of fact, the immediate environment of the building will be a way to acoustically explore in detail its relationship with the site. I envision the creation of a plaza or a pocket park, like the Paley Park in New York City (see precedents), providing an acoustic buffer zone that would participate in the aural experience of approaching the building.

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Libeskind here uses the sound as an ornament, playing with the materiality and the geometry of the space. The controlled amount of natural light and the absence of air conditioning participate as well to the entire sensory experience, and make this space an extraordinarily piece of design. The idea of generating noises or sounds while walking on a surface is very interesting. An idea would be to have receptors integrated within the floor, that would be connected to a series of speakers or to use natural materials like gravels so we become ourselves a sound generator.

10,000 iron plates cut into faces lie on the ground. Visitors can walk over them, triggering creaks and screams that resonate and grow in the cement chamber. “The effect is chilling, rattling the heart at the pain and loss of Jews in Europe”

The Holocaust Void

The Memory Void

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Case Study Analysis The Paley Park - New York City, USA

The Singing Tree - Lancashire, England

Landscape Architectural Firm: Zion & Breen

Designers: Mike Tonkin & Anna Liu

This is a perfect example of using additional sound sources to create a social gathering space in an urban environment. The waterfall evokes an acoustic image of nature and helps the visitor to escape from the bustling end aggressive environment of Manhattan. I would like to use similar techniques in the immediate environment of my site, creating an acoustic buffer zone that would participate in the aural experience while approaching the building.

This spectacular sculpture is both visual and aural. Both experiences are supportive and equally shared. I would say both experiences generate an identical response for me; the impressive pile of metallic tubes and the fascinating sound produced by this shadowy chorus have something frightening. This is exactly what architects should tend to achieve in their design: stimulate both sight and hearing in an harmonic way.

3 East 53th Street, Manhattan

EDGE CONDITION

General view

SIGHT & HEARING This impressive sculpture generates a supernatural sound when the wind blows and passes through its galvanized steel pipes. The wind energy produces a slightly discordant and penetrating choral sound covering a range of several octaves. Some of the pipes are primarily structural and aesthetic elements, while others have been cut across their width enabling the sound. The harmonic and singing qualities of the “tree� were produced by tuning the pipes according to their length by adding holes to the underside of each. The resulted intriguing sound provokes instantly an emotional response to the visitors.

Section Like the Japanese Tea Garden, Paley Park is a public space that encourages silence and privacy. Surrounded by high-rise buildings near Midtown, New York, this celebrated park became a phenomenal success as a welcoming respite from the sights and sounds of urban living. Located on the street, people are attracted to look in and enter at a dramatic focal entry point through a 20-foot cascading waterfall. The noise of the waterfall blocks out the sounds of the city and creates a sense of quiet and privacy.

General view

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General view

Detail

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Sketch Problem The assignment was to design or to illustrate with a sketch model a proposed entrance to my thesis project, considering the following: - building approach and elevation at entrance - building typology - accessibility - scale and threshold - procession I started by considering two opposite main entrances: one on Boylston St. and the one on Mass. Ave. The problem I had was to connect them at some point. By doing this, I started to think about the various spaces that would connect the two entrances. I went too literal and ended up with a realistic model that didn’t convey any design philosophy. So I started over and tried to think conceptually, focusing more about the sensory experience a visitor could experience and less about the scale or accessibility issues as it was suggested in the handout. The model right below achieved a more successful result.

“Walls, floors and ceilings can be thought of as acoustic lenses� Caleb Kelly. Sound. (Cambridge, Massachusetts: The MIT Press, 2011),115.

The multicolored wires represent the palette of emotions, the range of stimuli that are triggered by the acoustic response of the spaces that people encounter while processing between the two main entrances of the building. Along the path, spaces expand or retract as the materiality changes as well (degree of transparency of the back wall, creating various sonic environments.

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Annotated Bibliography

Annotated Bibliography

REFERENCE #1 Prochnik, George. In Pursuit of Silence – Listening for Meaning in a World of Noise. New York, USA: Anchor Books, 2010.

REFERENCE #4 Hudson, Sharon. Urban Acoustics. Getting started on Urban Noise. Berkeley, California, 2008.

Noise as opposed to silence: inviting silence into our life makes us aware that we are alive, as is the world around us. Experiencing silence focuses our attention on our existence. Through various stories, testimonies and interviews, George Prochnik bring us into a fascinating exploration of the frontiers of noise and silence. From a Trappist monk in Iowa to an anti-noise policymakers in Europe, each chapter investigates the unexpected paradoxes at the heart of our relationship with sound. Architecture has the power to create these moments of silence by muting all external noises and by soundproofing the ones that are internally generated. I really want to provide a space dedicated to silence in my building. It could be a kind of sanctuary, a place for meditation, and a retreat from the bustling activity of the city. I strongly believe that silence is one of the most striking auditory experiences that humans can encounter.

The site I chose is located in a dense urban area with lively streetscapes and heavy traffic. I purposely chose a noisy environment for the sake of my thesis, which is to bring inventive strategies to transform a chaotic soundscape into a harmonious palette of sounds. This book is a great technical resource as it provides basic information by which a layperson can understand noise, its role in the urban environment and the strategies for dealing with it. Urban Acoustics gives recommendations for treating various programs and type of spaces acoustically, dealing with absorption, reverberation and insulation. It also provides solutions for controlling, abating or eliminating the noise from the street, which will be one of my biggest concerns and challenges.

Quotes: - “silence is a fertile pause” - “the loudest argument for quiet may be a reflection on what otherwise remains in danger of going unheard”.

REFERENCE #5 Blesser Barry, Ruth- Salter Linda. Spaces Speak, are you listening?. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT edition, 2006. How can we experience spaces not only by seeing but also by listening? In this book, the two authors examine auditory spatial awareness: experiencing space by attentive listening. Integrating contributions from a wide range of disciplines (including architecture, music, acoustics, evolution, anthropology, cognitive psychology, audio engineering and many others), this book establishes the concepts and language of aural architecture. “When our ability to decode spatial attributes is sufficiently developed using a wide range of acoustic cues, we can readily visualize objects and spatial geometry: we can ‘‘see’’ with our ears”. Page 2

REFERENCE #2 Kelly, Caleb. Sound. Cambridge, Massachusetts: The MIT Press, 2011. This book is a series of scholars’ statements or article from artists, about the background buzz of thousands of sounds that increasingly mediates our lives. It explains the character of sounds and their properties. The book is divided up into chapters: Concepts of the Sonic, Noise and Silence, the Listener and the Acoustic Space, Bandwaves and Artists and Sound. Some chapters are not directly germane to my topic but the one discussing about how we experience architecture with our ears is a great source of inspiration. Quotes: - “a soundscape consists of events heard not objects seen”. - “walls, floors and ceilings can be thought of as acoustic lenses” - “Sound is arousing and dangerous because it can so easily penetrate and permeate, so effortlessly become the soft catastrophe of space”.

REFERENCE #3 Ursprung, Philip. Earthworks; The Architecture of Peter Zumthor. Peter Zumthor Laureate Essay, 2009. http://www.pritzkerprize.com/2009/essay This short essay was written for Peter Zumthor’s nomination for the Pritzker Architecture Price in 2009. Ursprung describes how he visited and experienced three examples of Zumthor’s work, through the lenses of his senses. He evokes the importance of the ‘spatial memory’ as a crucial component in architecture, where a texture, a smell or a sound can recall sensations we already have experienced in the past. “…the crunching gravel under my shoes, the smell of fresh pines in the nearby forest,…” of the Saint Benedict Chapel became a moment of great attention. Then, while entering in the chapel, and because of the suspended floor he said ”I felt like I was part of a resonant body, walking through some kind of huge instrument that echoed the noise of my footsteps”.

REFERENCE #6 Pallasmaa, Juhani. The Eye of the Skin. Padstow, Cornwall: TJ international LTD, 2008. This book consists of two essays, discussing the predominance of mind/visual based designs that end up being projects of artistic self expression of the architect. The first surveys the historical development of the eye-centric orientation of our Western culture that began with the Greeks. The second begins to lay out a way towards a multi-sensory approach to architecture that forms a sense of belonging and integration. The part dedicated to the hearing sense is minor but elegantly and thoroughly described in a clear, poetic and simple writing: “Sight isolates, whereas sound incorporates; vision is directional, whereas sound is omni-directional. The sense of sight implies exteriority, but sound creates an experience of interiority. I regard an object, but the sound approaches me; the eye reaches, but the ear receives”.

OTHER SOURCES

Labelle Brandon, Roden Steve. Site of Sound:of Architecture and the Ear. Los Angeles, USA: Errant Body Press, 1999. Malnar Joy Monice, Vodvarka Frank. Sensory Design. Minneapolis, USA: University of Minnesota Press, 2004.

We often neglect the power of hearing, touching and smelling and how they can make memories or feelings reappear deep inside.

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PROGRAMMING


EXISTING STATE


SITE: PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION AND ANALYSIS Site Plan

Site Location The site is located at 1081-1085 Boylston Street, where Massachusetts Avenue crosses the Turnpike, at the intersection of the Back-Bay and Fenway districts of Boston. It has a triangular shape that pointed out towards East.

State of Massachusetts

Greater Boston

Downtown Boston

1081-1085 Boylston Street

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Bird’s Eye view

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SITE: PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION AND ANALYSIS Topography

Site Photos

Most of the site has a gradual northward slope which become a steep embankment along the north boundary at the train tracks. The contour map is located in the appendix on page 86 - The contour intervals is 2 (two) feet.

Natural & Constructed Features

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The Nolli map provides an immediate and intuitive understanding of the city’s urban form through the representation of solid/void and figure/ground. All buildings are here filled with black whereas the white represents vegetation, paving patterns and the like. Here we can see a contrast between the South and East parts of the site on the right, with a dense urban fabric, as opposed to the North and West parts, which comprise the Fens and a large network of roads and highways. The map also reveals the edge conditions where clearly the Turnpike divides the city in two distinct blocks.

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SITE: PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION AND ANALYSIS Direction ,Wind

speeds

& Sun Diagram

Microclimate Information

The left diagram indicates that the main direction of the wind is West-North-West / East-South-East, with an average of 11 miles per hour. The right diagram shows that the wind speed is at its highest point at noon. Over the year, the period between November and December is the most disrupted by the wind.

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SITE: PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION AND ANALYSIS Sun & Diagrams - Comments

Sun & Shadows Winter Solstice

The site has optimum conditions to receive maximum sunshine throughout the day. On the North and East sides, the closest building is located at 200 feet minimum, which is insufficient to provide any shade on the site. The South part of the site along Boylston street faces a series of four to five stories buildings, with absolutely no impact in terms of shadows. The adjacent five stories building on the West side should bring some shade on a limited portion of the site after 3:00 PM except during the winter season where it will cover 80% of the site footprint. Nota: I added on the plan the 16 stories Berklee tower, which should be completed next year. It is too far from the site to have any impact.

8:00 AM

12:00 PM

4:00 PM

Spring Equinoxes

Pedestrian Radius About walking speed

8:00 AM

12:00 PM

4:00 PM

12:00 PM

4:00 PM

12:00 PM

4:00 PM

Although walking speeds can vary greatly depending on factors such as height, weight, age, terrain, surface, load, culture, and fitness, the average human walking speed is about 3 miles per hour. - specific studies have found pedestrian walking speeds ranging from 2.8 mph to 2.95 mph for older individuals to 3.3 mph to 3.38 mph for younger individuals. The walking distance on the diagram below doesn’t take into account the exact path that a pedestrian has to follow regarding the streets layout/ urban network.

Summer Solstice

8:00 AM

Fall Equinoxes

8:00 AM

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SITE: PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION AND ANALYSIS Transportation Nodes The Hynes Convention Center T station on the Green Line and a series of bus stops on both sides on Mass. Ave. create a transportation node. The result is a heavy pedestrian activity that makes this part of the city a vibrant district. Adjacent to the site is also a Hubway public bicycle rental station that brings additional people.

Traffic Pattern The site has a triangular shape that pointed out towards East. It is surrounded by three circulation paths, two of which happen to have some of the heaviest traffic in town. One is Massachusetts Avenue, which crosses Boston from East to West and provides access to Cambridge through Harvard Bridge. The other one is the Turnpike along with the MBTA’s commuter railroad, running perpendicular to Mass. Ave., more than 15 feet below grade on the West side of the parcels. The third path, Boylston Street, offers an entry to the Back Bay area from the Fenway district. The traffic here can also be dense during a Red Sox game. Overall, the traffic around the site is really intense, which originates a constant noise pollution.

Pedestrian Activities The site has a strategic location with nearby attractions including the Historic Back Bay, the Newbury Street and Boylston Street retail areas, the Prudential Center and Copley Place mixed-use developments, the Hynes Convention Center, the Massachusetts Avenue corridor, Berklee College of Music, Fenway Park, and the Lansdowne Street entertainment area. This unique location, combining a rich urban and retail environment with an easy access to urban transportation encourages a wide mix of people to wander around the site. Additionally, Boylston Street, just across the site has a concentration of retails and restaurants that activates and energizes the East edge of the parcel. We can also notice that during the day, the entry of Berklee’s building on 150 Mass. Ave. is always crowded with students hanging out on the sidewalk. The program could be an opportunity for them to create an ideal condition for gathering and playing music.

Art Institutions

One of the distinctive characteristics of the site happens to be its proximity to Boston’s main educational institutions dedicated to the visual and performing arts. Among others, we can cite: the Boston Architectural College, the Berklee College of Music and the New England Conservatory.

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SITE: PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION AND ANALYSIS Conclusion

Adjacent Land Use There is a high concentration of retail along Newbury Street, Massachusetts Avenue and Boylston Stret, right across the site. The Berklee campus for some reason doesn’t clearly appear as it is classified as commercial. However, we can see a high concentration of condominiums and apartments, mostly occupied by students. There are a few residential buildings as well as institutional ones. This observation correlates the 2010 Census data, where more than 60% of the population leaving nearby to the site is young, well educated and leaving in seasonal apartment rental.

Three main criteria led me to choose my site: 1. The site has to encompass the worst conditions in terms of noise pollution and vibration, if possible. Why? The goal here is to utilize the background sound of the city as a constraint in order to achieve some relevant contrast with the ambient noise of my building. I envision the shell of my building as a leaving machine, which would “filter” the cacophony and chaotic soundscape of the site, to obtain inside the building a controlled and harmonious sonic environment. The tem “filter” applies as well to the idea of having a porous envelope that provides a sense of conviviality between the interior spaces and the exterior. 2. My program requires to be in an urban setting, with a lot of pedestrian activities. The proximity with a transportation node, any institutional building or a concentration of retails should be in favor of attracting a large number of people close to the site. 3. My client is the ProArts consortium, whose member schools are Berklee College of Music, The Boston Architectural College, The Boston Conservatory, Emerson College, Massachusetts College of Art and Design, and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. In order to promote the inter connectivity of the arts through expanded opportunities between the students and the community, the site needed to be central to these colleges and easily accessible either by foot or public transportation.

After doing many researches, the site located at 1081 to 1085 Boylston street ended up to be the perfect match: • Proximity with the Mass Pike, MBTA railroad and Mass. Ave. This constant noise pollution, along with vibration transmissions from the MBTA commuter rail create the ideal conditions I am looking for to utilize the noise of the city as a constraint, in order to achieve some relevant contrast with the ambient noise of my building. • Vibrant location with night and day pedestrians activities. Retails and restaurant across the street that attract a lot of students. Node transportation with the bus line #1 and the Green Line. • Berkley College, which welcomes the main office of the ProArts Consortium is less than 100 feet from the site across Mass Ave. The Boston Architectural College New England Conservatory are within a 5 mn walking radius. The other colleges can easily get to the site by public transportation in 15 mn maximum.

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CODES Building Code Report

Zoning Report Narrative Program Overview The site has the particularity to comprise two adjacent lots (both currently used as an outdoor parking lot), with also two different zoning designations (see below and Appendix on page.85). The main parcel, lot A, on the East side and next to Mass. Ave., is the largest one. It has a triangular shape. The other parcel, lot B, is located on the West side, next to an existing residential building. Both parcels are part of the BOSTON PROPER district designation. Project name: Youth Art Center Lot A • Parcel ID 0504157000 • Owner: Lease Central Parking • Land Use: Commercial Land • Lot size: 25,125 SQ. FT. • Frontage: 216’-6” • Lot Width *: 200’-2” • Zoning designation: H-3 (Residential District, Apartments) AND B-2 (Business District, General) • F.A.R. = 3 and 2 • Setbacks (for B-2) : FY: None - SY: None - RY: 20 feet Lot B • Parcel ID 0504161000 • Owner: Ten 85-1087 Boylston Street • Land Use: Commercial Land • Lot size: 7,087 SQ. FT. • Frontage: 52’-12” • Lot Width *: 51’-11” • Zoning designation: H-3 (Residential District, Apartments) • F.A.R. = 3 • Setbacks : FY: 15 feet - SY: 10 feet - RY: 20 feet

The program is supposed to welcome the Pro-Arts consortium, to provide enrichment, support and growth for the students and arts educators. The program should also accommodate public spaces and be a place of cultural exchange among students and the visitors, increasing the level of interaction with and assimilation into the locality. Therefore, the building requires a number of different types of space: • space for group (class) teaching • space for group / individual to study • space for exploring art in music, architecture, painting, sculpture... • space for common facilities - gym, cafe • space for living - dormitory • space for performing and space for exhibition

Code Report The codes that I will use are based of the 2012 IBC edition and the Massachusetts Building Code 7th Edition. The program can be described as multi-disciplinary; it comprises a mixture of various uses, which will need to be compared in size to determine the predominant use of the building. From the above list, I would say that : • 30 % of the building can be classified as Educational - Group E.

In addition, I might use the air rights to increase the surface of my building, or to create a landscape plaza, acting as a buffer zone between the bustling environment of the city and the interior of the youth art center. In this area, the zoning designation is also B-2 (Business District, General). So zoning wise, this tricky situation will certainly end up with interpretations and final decisions regarding the program and the design. I might ask for a variance to increase the size of the business / general boundaries, in order to integrate the various aspects of my program (cafe, performance and exhibition spaces, classroom and gym). At this stage of my thesis, I will consider the largest lot (A), with the B-2 zoning designation, to develop further the code compliance form. SITE

• 40% of the building can be classified as Assembly - Group A (more than 50 occupants), and be subdivided as follow: - A1 for the performance space, although it might just be a small space with no fixed seats, meaning it could be classified as A3. - A2 for the café (no alcoholic beverages will be served). - A3 for the other public spaces - main hall, exhibition space, some classrooms. • 30 % of the building can be classified as Residential - Group R, and be subdivided as follow: - R1 for temporary artists or teachers who would stay less than 30 days - 5 to 10 rooms maximum. - R2 for students permanent sleeping (more than 30 days) - 30 rooms maximum.

Considering the above percentage, I will assume that the building’s occupancy is classified as A3. When I will get a better understanding of my program, I may consider allowing the use of mixed occupancies. Building Height and area

I will probably use non combustible materials (steel, concrete, bricks) for my building so the choice I will have to do is betwwen building type I or II. Considering the shape of the parcels and the FAR, the maximum number of stories on Massachusetts Ave. is 2 and could be up to 5 on Boylston street. Therefore I will choose to have a building type I B, which limits the maximum number of stories to 11 (no limitation in floor are per story) Fire Resistance

District and Zoning designation map

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(*): Definition of ‘Lot width’: the shortest horizontal distance between the side lot lines measured perpendicular to the mean direction of two straight lines, one between the foremost and rearmost points of one side lot line, and the other between the foremost and rearmost points of the other side lot line.

For a type I B construction, all the bearing walls, primary structure frame an floor construction have a fire resistance rating of 2 hours. For the non bearing wall, partitions shall be of solid wood construction formed by not less than two layers of 1-inch (25 mm) matched boards or laminated construction 4 inches (102 mm) thick, or of 1-hour fire-resistance-rated construction. The trade-off between active or a passive fire resistance should be discussed in the Schematic Design phase. Means of Egress

This will also be studied during the design phase since most of the time, it impacts the all design of a building.

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CODES Accessibility Report I will use the following regulations for my project:

• Applicable Accessibility Requirements: Mass. AAB Regulations - ADA • Massachusetts Architectural Access Board regulations – 521 CMR

• Americans with Disabilities Act: Sections 4.0 ACCESSIBLE ELEMENTS AND SPACES: SCOPE AND TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS and 9.0 ACCESSIBLE TRANSIENT LODGING Narrative of compliance:

As a new building constructed in Boston, MA, the Youth Art Center will be designed to comply with the applicable regulation set forth by the Massachusetts ABA and the ADA (see above). There will probably two main entrances for the public and one separate and less visible for the residents, students and teachers. All access will be at street levels and is to be provided not just for people with mobility impairments. These include hearing, vision, speech and cognitive impairments, as well as persons of short stature and with limited mobility not necessarily requiring the use of a wheelchair. To access to the upper floors, stairs and elevators will meet the requirements.

There is secondary access at the rear of the lot A, which will serve as a parking entrance since I will probably have to create some public parking spaces in replacement of the existing parking. All accesses to the parking will be accessible. The gym, the locker rooms, the café, the performance space and all classes needs to be on an accessible route. For the lodging part, the code requires a minimum of 2 accessible rooms.

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CULTURAL CONTEXT Historic Context The Back Bay is well-known for its upscale housing, luxury shopping, high-rise office buildings and hotels and is also home to cultural institutions such as the Boston Public Library. The neighborhood also recently ranked as one of the top neighborhoods in Boston for walkability. Before Back Bay became the neighborhood as we know it today, it was literally a tidal bay. In the 19th century, with the assistance from the railroad, tons of gravel were transported to create landfill and the area was fully filled in by 1882 (see opposite).

On the other side of Mass. Ave. the district of Fenway is mainly known for Fenway Park, the famous baseball field which attracts each year thousands of Red Sox fans. Another important feature of Fenway is the urban park “the Fens” (see map below), a vital space, intimately engaged with its surrounding city and immediate neighborhoods. It is edged by walk-up townhouses, apartment houses, and numerous cultural institutions: the Museum of Fine Arts, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Simmons College, Emmanuel College, Northeastern University, Wheelock College, and the Massachusetts Historic Society.

SITE

The source for the maps and pictures on that page come from the following source: Nancy S. Seasholes. Gaining Ground - A History of Landmaking in Boston. The MIT Press. London, England, 2003.

The park eventually built followed this plan quite closely.

Back bay on 1835 map of Boston

This map shows the two railroad tracks that were built across Back Bay in the 1830s. It also shows the boundary between the city’s territory and the marshlands. The red square indicates approximately where the site is located.

The red arrow indicates the location of the site. At that period one can notice that the district of Back Bay did not exist.

1879 Olmsted plan for Back Bay Fens 1858 photograph of Back Bay from the State house

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CULTURAL CONTEXT Demographic Info

Architectural Context Landmarks Passing on Mass Ave. offers for both pedestrians and drivers views of two main landmarks of the city. Coming from the Charles River, you can see on your left the Prudential Tower and on your right Fenway Park. Also, with its 16 stories, the new development program for the Berklee College on Mass. Ave should become a landmark for the area.

The data provided below are from the last 2010 Census. I selected an area around my site (red boundaries), comprising part of Back-Bay and Fenway. It takes a census of 28, 865 individuals. The charts below confirm that a young population of students live around the site. For the most part they are Berklee students. 75 % of the population is white and educated. Most of them are roommate or staying in a dormitory. They are here for a short term period, from 6 months to a couple of years.

Overall Considerations Both the Fenway and Back Bay include substantial historic districts, with a large number of bricks row-houses. Nevertheless, the Hynes Convention Center and the Frank Gehry’s building, at the corner of Newbury Street and Mass. Ave., offer dramatic contrasts with their modern architecture. The scale and character of development on my building should respond to both architectural styles, with a modern design that respects the height of the adjacent residential building (5 stories high).

FENWAY PARK

GEHRY’S BUILDING

PRUDENTIAL TOWER

BERKLEE TOWER Age

Gender

Race

My program will target not only students but also a young citydwellers population which all happen to live nearby the site, which should ensure that the facilities offer within my program will be well used.

Vacant housing status

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Household type for total population

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CULTURAL CONTEXT Political Issues For many years, the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority has been seeking proposals for the long- term lease and development of land within and air rights over Parcels 12, 13, 14, and 15 on the Massachusetts Turnpike, located in Boston west of Prudential Center and Hynes Convention Center, along Boylston Street. In June, 2000, Mayor Menino and the Boston Redevelopment Authority stated that the main goals of development of the air rights were to knit the neighborhoods across the Turnpike together and to rebuild the City in those areas. Stakes and expectations are high. Many proposals have been reviewed since then. The last one published on the BRA website proposed on parcel 12 (my site is part of it) two main buildings: a commercial one over the Turnpike and with a residential one, running perpendicular to it (see below).

Massachusetts Department of Transportation - Air Rights Parcel 12 - Renderings from a response for a request of proposal

Parcel 12 - Mass. Ave / Boylston St. intersection looking northwest Proposer: ADG SCOTTIA II LCC - Date: March 16,2012 Courtesy of BRA

Parcel 12 - Mass. Ave / Newbury St. intersection looking southwest

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INFORMATIONAL CONTEXT Client’s

Interview #1

profile

Descriptive Profile: About The Professional Arts Consortium (ProArts) is an association of six neighboring institutions of higher education in the Boston area dedicated to the visual and performing arts. Member schools are Berklee College of Music, The Boston Architectural College, The Boston Conservatory, Emerson College, Massachusetts College of Art and Design, and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Mission

ProArts is committed to providing its member schools with exciting opportunities to expand their vision of the arts through programs such as expansive cross-registration privileges, and inter-institutional courses. Links Website: http://www.proarts.org/ Blog Platform: http://proarts.tumblr.com/

Interviewed as the client Name: Ross Bresler

Function: Executive Director of the ProArts Consortium Day: November 14, 2012 – 12:30 PM Location: Pavement Café Program Real need for spaces to welcome the various events the ProArts consortium initiates throughout the year. A gym is definitely the space that would fulfill real needs. A dormitory, even with a few beds would also be something to consider Building and Site The Boylston side of the building should echo the activity across the street, by having a street presence and some degrees of transparency. Consider with attention the relationship between the building and the pedestrian spaces at street level. Creating a plaza or a park is a good idea but be careful of the privacy and how it will be exposed to the public. Do you want it to be opened to the public at night or not? Financial aspect Some ideas to get some revenues form the building: - Transferring the parking lots - Having a space for rental for private events

Contact Information

Ross Bresler, Ph.D. Executive Director Professional Arts Consortium c/o Berklee College of Music 1140 Boylston Street Boston, MA 02215 Phone: 617-236-8617 Fax: 617-236-8965 Email: info@proarts.org

Interview #2 Descriptive Profile: Interviewed as the user

Name: Richard Griswold

Function: BAC representative of the ProArts Consortium Day: November 20, 2012 – 5:30 PM

Location: Boston Architectural College Program A program that would unite the ProArts school is realistic, but be sure not to include other schools. The challenge here is to bring together 5 different entities that also make their own kind of “noise”, and then create spaces where they can collaborate. Building and Site Noise is a big concern; which is probably why nothing has been built there before. The neighbors across Boylston Street demand an urban street front with a matching sidewalk life. Think about developing the northeast corner of the Mass/Boylston intersection. Financial aspect A street of retail might be a desirable mixed-use part of this development, like Harvard but also Berklee started. Also, just as our BAC Mural is a “billboard” from the Mass Pike, your project has a potential to be advertising for the consortium or for others - think about the visibility form the Turnpike!

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AURAL ARCHITECTURE COUNTEREXAMPLES

AURAL ARCHITECTURE RELATED PRECEDENT

The Guggenheim Museum - NYC, USA Architect: Frank Lloyd Right

Quai Branly Museum - Paris, France Architect: Jean Nouvel Designed by Jean Nouvel, the Musée du quai Branly building resembles a long footbridge, partly covered with wood, and stretching into the trees. Hidden from view by thick vegetation, protected from the noise of the quays by a glass palisade.

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City is an ideal example of the visual-functional basis of modernity. The simplicity of the space contributes to a highly visually successful environment. What is seen enhances the architectural environment for the museum, and facilitates visual relationships that enhance viewing public art. However, the project fails to acknowledge any aural consequences at its inception. Acoustic glare produced by the hard, flat surfaces create a negative aural aesthetic of the space, one that conflicts with viewing art. The sounds of virtually everyone in the main atrium resonate up and throughout the whole main gallery, affecting the experience for the visitor.

The museum only gradually reveals itself, and the visitor becomes an explorer. To reach it you cross an undulating garden designed to create an impression of remote, untamed greenery. The building is perched on piles, all is curved, fluid, transparent, mysterious and, above all, warmly receptive. The architectural ensemble takes in five levels, crowned by a wide terrace with fine views of the Eiffel Tower and Paris.

Chicane that serves as an additional acoustic protection from the traffic noise.

General View

Main access from the street

SCREENING THE NOISE FROM THE BUSY BOULEVARD WHILE CREATING A VISUAL CONNECTION WITH THE CITY.

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Reverberation diagram Atrium

Guggenheim atrium

The building complex sits around and above a garden which fills the site. The garden is largely protected from the street, with a three-story glass wall facing the Seine. The guests can enjoy the peaceful greenery at their leisure.

BOTH VISUAL AND AURAL ASPECTS IN ARCHITECTURE SHOULD BE SHARED AND REINFORCED EACH OTHER AND NOT PRODUCING A CONFLICTING RESPONSE Banq Restaurant - Boston, MA Architect: Office Da

Main entrance

‘BanQ’ used to be a high-end restaurant in the South End district of Boston, Massachusetts. A series of wooden carved laminated beams brought a striking interior look with an undulating ceiling that managed to carve out intimate zones. The goal was to reinforce dining out as an intimate experience. But this visually appealing space, with a breathtaking design had a serious problem. The first minutes after customers would seat down, that supposedly delightful dinner happened to turn into a terrible evening just because of the poor acoustic of the restaurant.

Main dining area

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PRECEDENTS Youth Center - Amsterdam, The Netherlands Architect: Atelier Kempe Till

The Sound Lounge - University of Columbia, USA Architect: Joel Sanders Architects Sound Lounge, the newly renovated student lounge at the University of Virginia School of Architecture, integrates state of the art audiovisual technologies to transform this formerly deserted 2000 square foot double-height lobby into an interactive public realm that updates Jefferson’s ideal of the “academical village” for the 21st century. Speakers, installed within three sonic cones, project columns of directed sound audible only to people within the zone defined by three blue ellipses inscribed within the carpet beneath them.

Main exterior view

HOW IT WORKS? The cones create “sound showers” that enable users to design their own soundscapes by tapping into one of three closed-circuit channels that connect them with a range of sites - personal, local, and global. Sitting on comfortable mobile furniture, students and teachers, alone or in groups, can share their personal playlists, experience university simulcast lectures and events or listen to real-time broadcasts from across the globe. Longitudinal Section

The task of this small youth- and neighbourhood centre was to integrate the small building as carefully as possible in the existing tree population, to keep enough distance to the adjacent building blocks and to design a monumental, polydirectional and well visible free-standing building. The ground floor level is designed as a flat sandwich-space, which opens up completely to the surroundings thanks to the glazing on all sides. The second floor has a fully closed façade and forms a hermetic and introspective space. Its desired, very neutral appearance is offset by its generous ceiling height and two skylights that illuminated the space naturally.

Ground floor

Second floor - Community hall

CREATING A WELCOMING ENVIRONMENT, WELL VISIBLE FROM THE EXTERIOR WHILE HAVING AN UPPER ENVELOPE IMPERVIOUS TO SOUND

CREATING A GATHERING SPACE AND SOCIAL INTERACTIONS THROUGH ARTIFICIAL SOUND SAMPLES. First floor plan

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FUTURE STATE


MISSION AND GOALS Mission To use the physical properties of sound to engage the hearing sense in every aspect of the program. By adding aural richness to spaces, the Youth Art Center should trigger a wide range of acoustic stimuli in both student and the public, to finally bring out their auditory spatial awareness. Designed for optimum aural experience, the spaces should also help to foster cultural exchanges and interactions among the users of the building.

Goal #1 The Youth Art Center should promote spontaneous social interactions between the students of all colleges and with the visitors, and offer a lively place of exchange and community art initiatives.

High visibility of the proposed activities from the street Transparency

Issues #1: AUDIBILITY The dreadful noise conditions around the site raise a real challenge in terms of mitigating the various noise sources from the urban environment, especially the ones involving the intense traffic on the Turnpike. The spatial components of the program include among others dorms, classroom and performances spaces program. Insulation from the exterior noise and vibration annoyances, but also between the different spaces need to be addressed. #2: INTERACTION The program will bring students from five various colleges, all with their own identity and needs. The type of proposed activities but also the space arrangement and the circulation within the building will be critical to the success of the Youth Art Center.

Goal #2 The circulation paths should be as direct and efficient as possible while separating students and the visitors. Unauthorized access or entry clearly mentioned Circulation system should be self explanatory for first time visitors and should provide for its users a clear sense of orientation.

Signage within the building should be efficient and uniform. #3: SECURITY Having a multi used building with some private and public spaces leads to be clear on how the various users will circulate inside the building. Also if I decide to create a plaza, which is likely to be the case, it might attracts random people at nights or even during the day, making this outdoor space unpleasant or even worse unsecured.

#4: SUSTAINABILITY - The building should be making an example for the public to follow to protect the environment, in terms of lighting, recycled materials and human productivity.

Goal #3 Considering the fact that acoustic comfort should be omnipresent and integrated at each step of the design, the building envelope, its geometry but also the choice of materials for interior finishes should be thoughtfully considered and implemented.

Use the notion of reverberation time, speech intelligibility, resonators, diffusion, diffraction, absorption, reflection, impact noise, and sound transmission loss.

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COST EVALUATION Massing

Building Footprint

studies

Building’s Overall Dimension

View from the corner of Mass. Ave. and Newbury st., looking South-West

View from the corner of Mass. Ave. and Boylston st., looking West

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COST EVALUATION Spatial Components

and

SF

The chart below is based on the layout of the proposed Youth Art Center, which comprises two distinct elements: - one five stories building - Gross Area = 5,160 sq.ft. - Total Gross Area = 25,800 sq.ft. - one two stories building - Gross Area = 12,701 sq.ft. - Total Gross Area = 25,402 sq.ft.

In addition, a parking lot should be underneath the ground floor, with two levels. The total gross area for the parking will be 17,861 x 2 = 35,722 sq.ft. At this stage of the project, I am unable to provide any precise square footage for the various spatial components of my building. However, based on the percentage assigned for each part of the program, I can estimate the following areas: - classrooms, workshops and offices --> 15,300 sq.ft. - performance space, exhibition space, gym and café --> 25,702 sq.ft. - dormitory (temporary an permanent stay) --> 10,200 sq.ft. The circulation, staircases, elevators and restrooms should represent approximately 30% of the total gross area, excluding the basement with the parking and the mechanical room. The exhibition space for instance should be part of the main lobby and be considered as circulation.

Total Construction Cost Surface Gross SF: 86, 924 S.F. Efficiency Factor: 70% General Building Cost Unit Cost: $ 135.00 / GSF * Total Building Cost: 135× 86,924 (S.F) =

$11,734,740.00

General Cost Estimate * A. Building Cost: B. Fixed Equipment Cost (8% of A): C. Site Development (15% of A): D. Total Construction (A+B+C):

$ 11,734,740.00 $ 938,779.00 $ 1,760,211.00 $ 14,433,730.00

E. Site Acquisition/Demolition**: F. Moveable Equipment (8% of A): G. Professional Fees (6% of D): H. Contingencies (10% of D): I. Administrative Cost (1% of D):

$ $ $ $ $

965,400.00 938,779.00 866,023.00 1,443,373.00 144,337.00

That gives us the following informations for the building *: Total Useable Area: 35,841 SQ.FT.

Total Unassigned Area: 15,360 SQ.FT.

Total Budget Required (D+E through I):

$18,791,642.00

Gross Area: 51,202 SQ.FT

Base Building Efficiency: 70.0% (*): I didn’t consider the basement with the parking

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(*): Source - “Problem Seeking” by William M Pena and Stephen A Parshall, Ed. 2012 - p.69 (**): Source – http://www.cityofboston.gov/assessing/search/ - The Land value for the two parcels is estimated at $30.00/S.F. - No demolition cost.

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

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BOOKS Duerk, Donna. Architectural Programming: information Gathering and Management for Design. Wiley, New York, 1993 Lynch, Kdevin. The Image of a City. Cambridge, MIT Press, 1960 Pena and Parshall. Problem Seeking. New York, John Wiley & Sons. 2012

WEBSITES Climate Data

http://www.weatherbase.com/weather/

http://www.gaisma.com/en/location/boston-massachusetts.html http://www.windfinder.com/

http://kab-2.blogspot.com/2007/08/climate-analysis-boston-ma.html General information

http://www.cityofboston.gov/

http://www.cityofboston.gov/dnd/U_Neighborhood_Profiles.asp http://www.meanscostworks.com/ Zoning information, maps

http://www.bostonredevelopmentauthority.org/

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APPENDIX

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Zoning Map

66

of

Back-Bay - Fenway

Parcel Information

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Contour Map

Interview #1

Name: Ross Bresler

Function: Executive Director of the ProArts Consortium How would you define the Proarts’ mission? It was founded in the early 1980s when a task Force of the Boston Consortium of the Professional Arts, appointed by the CEOs of the Boston Architectural Center, Massachusetts College of Art, School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Emerson College, and the New England Conservatory of Music meets to study collaborative programs among these institutions. The mission is to promote the interconnectivity of the arts through expanded opportunities for its members and for the community. ProArts is committed to being a leading force for the arts and arts education. Where do your public events or classes take place? Right now we don’t have any dedicated spaces that serve our needs. Any schools part of the consortium is likely to welcome our events. Imagine you are the client, what kind of spaces would you need in priority? The idea of having gathering spaces, certainly a performance space as an exhibition space that could be use by the individual institutions but also for collective uses would certainly be of interest. However, the service that none of this places have (and I know it’s not sexy and exciting) is a gym, a place to workout. Larger universities have this infrastructure and a gym would fulfill a real need. Another major need would be a dormitory; everybody needs beds. Even us, with the Berklee tower which is coming, we won’t have enough beds to welcome all our students. Depending on the size of your building, they could be just artist residents, visiting artists who stay for a semester; some kind of living corridor. How do think the building should relate to its surrounding (relationship with the adjacent street, retails, outdoor activities, transportation…)? Let’s talk about Boylston Street where we are, just across your site. Ten years ago, this was a desolated area with a very few shops. When retails, café and restaurant opened, all of a sudden this part of Boylston changed and became lively. I think you should echo that by having a street presence and some transparency with the façade: a fishbowl, an exhibition space, why not a recording studio like the Emerson college with the WBRS radio station? An Internet radio station at street level where you could have some live performances would be compelling. In this neighborhood, especially on Boylston street, where a bunch of new projects with more prominent access from the street will transform this area, there is something interesting to achieve in your building in terms of its relationship with the pedestrian space at the street level. If you are interesting of creating a plaza with a main access on Mass. Ave, think about what’s private versus public. How this plaza will be filled in at night for example, with street people, residents (students or artists), the public if you decide to rent some spaces for events? There is an existing pocket park with a very little infrastructure on Haviland street, right behind us. Since it opened last year, it has been very successful; it’s always packed of students. So having a green space around the building would add some interest I am sure but keep in mind that it will be exposed and could accessible to anybody. In terms of business plan, how do you think this project could be a source of income that would financially make this project feasible? Having some beds would be definitely a good resource for money. Transferring the existing parking in the basement also would add cash. Also why not having a kitchen that could be used with a medium public space for third party rental, like organizations who are seeking for a space where they could seat 200 hundreds people for their annual gala? The Harvard Club on Com. Ave has such a place that they rent to the public and I am pretty confident that renting a space out would also make this building a destination. Finally, why not having an outdoor space on the roof? That would maximize the footprint (MOMA is an example) and could be interesting in terms of budget

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Interview #2 Name: Richard Griswold Function: BAC representative of the ProArts Consortium What do you think about such a program? Do you think it is realistic? I think I may have misunderstood your intentions from an earlier email: Are you not considering the building of a shared building for the Pro-Arts consortium? I think a program to unite this particular group of schools is far more realistic than just uniting all of the schools in Boston connected to the arts. For example, I believe that the New England School of Photography is a for-profit school, while the pro-arts schools are non-profit. If this is your goal, the program is realistic, to the extent that all schools can enliven the building with a mission-critical part of their identity. The Pro-Arts schools have chosen to work together and make ways for intellectual exchange. I believe that a building would create a way for actual, functioning consortium actively engaging the five schools. To make your project realistic, I would commit to creating a physical place where this consortium might occur. What do you think about the site in terms of accessibility, presence, crowding, noise… Do you think it makes sense to have my building there in terms of program? What should I be concerned or aware of? Do I answer as a “client” or as a “designer”? I think the location of your site is good for the premise of your project, but the highway/train noise is probably why it has not been built on before now. I think the challenge of noise on the site is to bring together 5 different entities that also make their own kind of “noise”, and then create spaces where they can also collaborate. I think that the neighbors across Boylston Street demand an urban streetfront with a matching sidewalk life. I think it is important to also design your project predicting development of the northeast corner of the Mass/Boylston intersection, which might well include BAC dorms. In terms of overcrowding, a realistic parking count will be an important challenge of your project. How do think the building should relate to its surrounding (relationship with the adjacent street, retails, outdoor activities, transportation…)? I think I hit that one above. Imagine you are the client (Pro Arts consortium), what kind of spaces would you need in priority? I think the challenge of noise on the site is to bring together 5 different entities that also make their own kind of “noise”, and then create spaces where they can collaborate. I think that each entity should be provided with an irresistible resource to their own teaching and learning process, with other spaces in which more flexible kinds of collaboration can occur. I think that your idea of “diversity of the arts” has a good basis, but if the program is left too vague, the resulting program (and the resulting architecture) will be less interesting. Charles Eames reminds us that “good constraints make good design”. I would decide who the clients are and who they are not, and I would decide what kinds of activities can take place and which cannot. Your notion of “flexibile, foundational space” to my mind is counterproductive to your premise” some spaces are good for music, some are better for painting, teaching broadcast Journalism, etc. Also the music priorities of Berkeley and the Conservatory are different. Wouldn’t it be great to reflect the difference embedded in our diversity as well as the possibility of collaboration?

In terms of business plan, how do you think this project could be a source of income that would financially make this project feasible? Just as Harvard University is landlord to many stores in Harvard Square (and I think Berkeley has actively developed the strip across from your site) I think a street of retail might be a desirable mixed-use part of this development. Also, just as our BAC Mural is a “billboard” from the Mass Pike, your project has a potential to be advertising for the consortium. Also many of the schools have recently developed housing, which is considered a good income stream too. Here again, I think the “flexible foundational” space is a danger, as it could (if left un-tended) lead to a generic solution where the people at Google could just as easily collaborate as your clients.

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Resume

OLIVIER JAMIN CHANGEART E 112 West Concord St. Apt. #2 E E BOSTON, MA - 02118 ARC H ITE C T     

Tel.: (857) 207- 9811 Email: olivier.changeart@the-bac.edu Online Portfolio: http://issuu.com/olivierjc

| D E S IG N E R | A C O U S T IC E N G IN E E R

Architectural Masters Candidate (2013 Graduate) | 3.6 GPA Acoustical Design Professional with 10+ years of experience Technical expertise in AutoCad, Revit, Adobe Photoshop & InDesign, SketchUp, Podium, Microsoft Office Expert in project management, research, and integration across functions Fluent in French

EDU CA TIO N BOSTON ARCHITECTURAL COLLEGE - Candidate for Master of Architecture – Boston, USA PARIS VI UNIVERSITY - Master’s Degree, Architectural & Urban Acoustics – Paris, France PAUL SABATIER UNIVERSITY - Bachelor of Science, Physical Engineering – Toulouse, France

9/2007 – Present 6/1996 6/1994

PR O F E S SIO N A L E X P E R IE N C E HAYCON DESIGN– Boston, MA

08/2012 – Present

Architectural Intern • Collaborate on various commercial projects and historic rehabilitation of multi-family houses. ANDERSEN MILLER DESIGN – Somerville, MA

11/2011 – 7/2012 Architectural Intern • Participated to the Design Development and Construction Documents phases for an ambitious adaptive re-use project of two schools in Brooklyn, NY

– Boston, MA 01/2011 - 8/2011 Neighborhood Housing Development consultant Key Achievements: • Drafted RFP design standards for city owned vacant lot based on context and zoning. • Created schematic housing prototypes based on neighborhood context, city standards and zoning requirements. • Established various urban planning maps to improve the built, economic and social environments of the communities in the greater Boston.

DEPARTMENT OF NEIGHBORHOOD DEVELOPMENT

BOSTON ARCHITECTURAL COLLEGE – Boston, MA Design competition and Community projects

12/2009 – 5/2011

Key Achievements: • Collaborated on project to research hotel design information for Miami Beach, including modular building process and sustainable facilities. • Conducted research for planned farmer’s market, to include analyzing existing markets and evaluating potential sites. • Managed research to identify scope of work for new courthouse in Boston, including site description, code research, cultural / behavioral context, mission / goal and performance requirements, and cost evaluation. • Contributed to landscape architectural project to design new wildlife crossing structure, utilizing GoogleEarth and GIS data to prepare designs.

MICHAEL KIM ASSOCIATES – Brookline, MA Intern Architect

8/2008 – 8/2009

Key Achievements: • Successfully prepared quality construction documents for residential and commercial projects, as well as 3D renderings. • Conducted site visits and field measurements, documented and analyzed historically and architecturally significant homes. • Developed strong knowledge of all stages of design process and project evolution\

DECIBEL FRANCE – Paris, France Acoustic Engineer

9/1998 – 1/2007

Key Achievements: • Conducted field measurements, analyzed results to prepared reports and developed project specifications. • Developed project estimates, and prepared specifications and performance predictions. • Supervised three employees. Oversaw subcontractors. Hired and trained technician. • Managed operations from planning to completion on projects of $230,000+ in multiple industries. • Successfully established Paris office, developing $1.3M+ client portfolio and increasing sales by 110% in eight years.

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Thesis Proposal  

This proposal describes my thesis topic, its site location, its intended building program, its purpose, function and my design philosophy.

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