Head on over to REBURBIA to vote on your favorite submission to the competition, which is dedicated to re-envisioning the suburbs. Finalists have been chosen by the judges and [I think] the rest is up to you.
I would also encourage you to check out the ‘Notable Entries‘, as many of them are sick – such as Glass Houses: (Matta) Clark County, Nevada by ZELLNERPLUS, which I’ve decided to feature here. Basically, I think this was my favorite of the submissions – largely due to the fact that the notion of splitting McMansions into smaller units Gordon Matta Clark style is just too ridiculous not to love. I mean, my ninjas, PLEASE – thing is brilliant.
Anyways, ending up on AMNP isn’t anywhere near as good as winning the competition – but I wanted to give the project a shout.
Glass Houses: (Matta) Clark County, Nevada by ZELLNERPLUS
Nevada has the highest foreclosure rate in the United States. 70,000 homes are affected- meaning 1 in 16 in homes is vacant. Not coincidentally, there are nearly 6,000 Clark County School District students who are now considered homeless. 1/3 of the homeless in Nevada are children under the age of 18, suggesting a much larger floating homeless population.
Re-inventing suburbia today is not a matter of making better houses or improving suburban planning. This project, although highly speculative, seeks to suggest a means of closing the gap between a near-absurd excess of new but vacant suburban homes across the nation, and our tragic, burgeoning homeless population.
We proceed from a Gordon Matta-Clark like vivisection of the typical subdivision. Each house within a standardized block is subdivided into four unequal units separated by a 3 meter wide gap that provides communal access and light. The interiors of each unit are reconfigured and capped with double glazed plates. The glass offers both a means of delivering acoustical and light control (via electrified privacy film.) Thermal control is delivered by employing the cavity space as a temperature buffer.
The ambition of re-envisioning the suburb must address what to do with the human as well as physical fall-out created by failed suburban development models and toxic financial speculation. Until we address the literal and metaphorical implications of these issues we are just gilding the suburban lily.
The ‘LET THEM BURN‘ entry was also pretty entertaining – but really dark.
[click images for larger view – more images available here]
Designed by staciÃ³n-ARquitectura Arquitectos [with Armando CantÃº], the Showroom Ofimodul was created to meet the very specific needs of the Monterrey, Mexico based Ofimodul Company – namely, to create a space that linked their design and manufacturing services to a showroom, and the entry to the site.
Specializing in the design and manufacturing of office furniture, the Ofimodul Company takes their products from concept to completion on the same site. A [roughly] 3,000sf addition was designed to join, on some level, the first and last stages of this furniture design/build process – attached to the manufacturing building, the addition creates an entry for visitors / clients that doubles as an exhibition space for finished furniture products. The ‘design’ aspect of the program is then located adjacent to this exhibition space, contained within the previously-existing manufacturing building.
The design manifested as a simple concrete box – openings clad in glass – that seems to hang off the walls of the existing structure, meeting the ground with nothing more than one concrete wall and the staircase that accesses the showroom. This served the dual function of leaving parking spaces under the structure, so clients and visitors could park directly beneath the showroom volume – and connected the showroom to the interior of the manufacturing building, and the ‘design’ spaces.
In addition to the beautiful simplicity of form and material choice, I’m really feeling the entry space – the way the volume cantilevers out past the concrete wall/column, creating a covered entry staircase that seems to almost frame the entrants as they climb the steps. Pretty dope.
::all images + info courtesy of staciÃ³n-ARquitectura Arquitectos – thanks CÃ©sar::
::photographs by Eduardo HernÃ¡ndez::
::additional images, and larger versions of the images shown here, can be found here on AMNP’s Flickr page::
Well, we hope it’s unbreakble, anyways. The NY Times looks at technological improvements in glass – in particular, the new observation deck of the Sears Tower, which projects a retractable glass box 4 feet from the building’s facade. Which, by the way, looks scary as hell – but also pretty dope.