Farm Walk transforms the once austere and formal spaces of the University Library into an exuberant edible landscape. As a response to the static and imposing presence of the library designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, the new dynamic landscape presents multifunctional and human-scaled spaces that support the library, university, and the surrounding community. The public spaces are designed to foster cross-community engagement through education and agriculture. The University Library grounds are the perfect on-campus destination to eat, learn, and grow.
Competition Entry; Joint Winner; Cambridge University Library Landscape Competition; University of Cambridge, UK; University of Cambridge Department of Architecture + Cambridge University Library
Yongsan National Park
Yongsan Garrison with more than one thousand buildings currently provides living and working space for about twenty thousand military personnel and related civilians. Offices, residential apartments, education facilities, restaurants, gyms and cultural buildings retain combined gross floor area of seven million sq. ft (650,000 sq. m). The present Building Coverage Ratio is approximately 14 % (346,000 sq. m out of 2,430,000 sq. m). Historic buildings and large educational-cultural buildings are easily converted to Visitor Centers, History Museums, Galleries and Public Sports Centers and used as is or with minimum renovation as soon as possible. We propose to donate a large number of office-residential buildings to international humanitarian-aid organizations fighting against poverty or working for peace, education of next generations, environment, human rights and culture. The office buildings and residential buildings are provided for free to the organizations and groups for the next 30 years or more. Young people with noble ideals from all over the world would be working and living in Yongsan, the best place equipped with cultural diversity, art, information, pleasure and nature. Almost every ethnic minority group in the country would be able to have their own space to have meetings and events. Those new friends are the best gift that our generation can give to young Koreans. By returning back Yongsan to the world citizens as a token of brotherhood Yongsan would be able to truly overcome the trauma from the violence and tragedy in its history. Other buildings would be used as temporary social housing for the people looking for jobs, office for grassroots movements, community facilities, urban farming shed, or artist residencies, etc. All the decisions regarding future use of the building would be based on the democratic process with people’s participation.
Competition entry; Invited International Competition for the Design of Yongsan Park; Collaboration: Group Han Associates, Turenscape
Orlando attracts over 51 million tourists a year. Orlando has the thirteenth busiest airport in the United States and it is also one of the busiest American cities for conferences and conventions. Despite Orlando’s 2009 title of most visited American city, its downtown core lacks the urban vitality that one would expect from such a title. This contradiction can be attributed to the wide dispersion of Orlando’s main attractions combined with the sprawling suburban character of the city. Most major tourist attractions are located along International Drive approximately 21 miles away from downtown, creating a decentralized and diffuse landscape of tourism and traffic. In a way, Orlando is a city full of other self-contained analogous cities, all connected by the spine of Interstate 4. Charles Moore considered Disneyland to be the most influential piece of postwar American Urbanism. Despite the extreme choreography and management of these environments, the Walt Disney World and Universal Resorts have succeeded in manufacturing distinctive pedestrian-oriented quasi-urban places. Orlando, in 2040, takes a cue from the success of the nearby theme park and resort environments and redefines its downtown core with a bold gesture that transforms the city into a vibrant destination and a truly livable city.
Competition entry; Winner; Envision 2040 Green Works Orlando Design Competition; Orlando, Florida, USA
Far Rockaway’s beaches are hardly ideal for swimming and its boardwalks lack the hustle and bustle of ground-level commercial activity. Currently, the area fails to attract regional visitors from the Greater NYC Area. However, the outpost’s foremost asset is its uninterrupted views toward the ocean. This proposal capitalizes on the area's potential and envisions roof space to maximize the public realm of this oceanfront community creating unique and dramatic commercial venues. This aggressive rooftop strategy goes far beyond the usually timid role as a garden or an inaccessible solar array, and is enhanced by its interconnected plan, reminiscent of a horizontal pedestrian mall. Even when the area is affected by severe flooding, the connected roof space works as a public forum, shelter, recreation field, or simply a bridge linking its neighbors. While the primary social activity occupies the building’s roof, the ground is dominated by natural dynamics. By flipping the common notion of massive protective measures against sea water, the restored dunes as well as inter-dune corridors and tidal marshes positively acknowledge the given conditions of the site and leave room for nature to reign. Thanks to the high water table in this area, the nearly vanished native landscape of Far Rockaway coast can be relatively easily restored and maintained. The marshes stretch deep into the site providing valuable education opportunities and vernacular aesthetics while reinforcing the capacity to mitigate flood events.
Competition Entry; Honorable Mention; Far Roc Design Competition, For a Resilient Rockaway, 2013; Collaboration: NEED Architecture, IJKim Architect
Commissioned project, in-progress; 474 acres; Burlington County, NJ.
The conventional approach to utility-scale PV arrays involves locating them in an isolated site and removing all traces of plant and animal life for the sake of easy installation and maintenance of the collection system. Whether this means clear cutting woodland areas or covering a large field with ballast, this practice effectively creates a site that is, in ecological terms, a monoculture. In contrast to current renewable energy sites where installations are inaccessible, non-interactive, monofunctional, and generally unsympathetic to site conditions, Heliofield aims to establish dynamic relationships between technology, landscape, and the site’s occupants, whether they are people, plants or animals. The oppositional relationship between energy infrastructure sites and local ecology is transformed into one of reciprocation, where the solar modules are designed to participate in and add to the ecosystem of the park. Heliofield generates power through its technology but gains resilience through biodiversity.
Competition Entry; Honorable Mention; LAGI NYC 2012 International Design Competition; Land Art Generator Initiative; New York, USA
Flowscape imagines the transformation of downtown Tampa through the introduction of water into its parched urban core. Instead of just reaching out into the river with piers and walkways, the river is invited into the city. By excavating a canal underneath the expressway, the mouth of the Hillsborough is connected to Ybor Channel, letting the brackish waters circulate through the city. What was once a district of forgotten spaces is now a lush urban marshland. Tampa’s already vibrant boating culture is now integrated into the urban and ecological networks of the city.
Competition entry; Joint Winner; ReStitch Tampa Competition by University of South Florida + National Endowment for the Arts; Tampa, Florida, USA
During the last two hundred years, Manhattan has witnessed an exponential increase in the volume of building mass with the ascent of the skyscraper as the city’s predominant building typology. Although developed during the same period, the network of streets remains largely unchanged and has failed to meet the evolving demands of the city. The island’s ground plane has arrived at its full capacity and is now cramped with the colossal amount of infrastructure needed for transportation, power, waterworks, public safety and telecommunication, as well as with the rapidly escalating demand for tourism, leisure and recreation. We propose the second great grid, a single connected structure which occupies the air rights of the street. A perfectly level, gridded plane, uncompromised by the topography of the island’s bedrock, and high enough at 700 feet to interconnect the tops of skyscrapers. It doubles the circulation capacity of the city and provides vast area for energy harvesting, leisure, biological production and even an airport for instant global connection.
Competition Entry; 1st Prize; The Greatest Grid Competition; Architectural League of New York; Exhibition at the Museum of City of New York, January - June 2012.
Woolhaus is a shelter and art piece on the world’s longest outdoor skating trail in Winnipeg, Canada. Constructed on top of meter-thick ice in the middle of the frozen river, without connection to power supply, Woolhaus was conceived more as a piece of clothing than a structure - something which you enter into and maintain constant contact with, like a warm sweater. The insulation by the woolen tubes and translucent roof help preserve the warmth gained from sunlight. The opaque nature of the hut encourages exploration and inevitably, surprise. (photo by Colin Grover, Pike Projects)
Competition Entry; Winner; Warming Huts Art & Architecture Contest; Installed at Assiniboine River, Winnipeg, Canada, September 2012 – January 2013; The Forks North Portage Company.
A garden is not always well used in the North East or Southern states in North America. Vancouver Island, however, is an ideal site for an all-season garden thanks to its mild weather and pristine environment. The owner’s family is closely engaged in all garden activities, such as farming, sports, bbq or just relaxing. When they asked me to upgrade the cherished place, they anticipated significant construction costs for new paving, new deck and new trees. But, I persuaded them to highlight the existing beauty of the site with minimal intervention rather than importing additional material. By using only subtraction—cutting low tree branches and removing underutilized garden features—the garden became spacious, practical, and beautiful. And they saved most of the budgeted money.
Commissioned Project, 2012; Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada.
Commissioned project; in progress; Private garden + two-car garage + tree house
Commissioned project; In-progress; Bergen county, New Jersey
The modular green pocket wall creates a lush vertical landscape that contrasts with the architectural forms of the display unit. Tiled pocket forms vary in depth, allowing for a dynamic pattern of foliage that flows into the interior, leading customers to the booth beyond.
Competition entry; Winner; LG Hi-Macs Design Competition, USA, 2013; Collaboration with IDS Architecture
Downtown Ulsan Cultural District
We provided street design guidelines, landscape features, public plaza layout and design, paving plan, economic development plan, festival plans, identity planning, transportation plan, facade/sign/awning guidelines and urbanistic connection scheme.
Commissioned project; Urban design; Street revitalization; Forum for Culture City Ulsan, 2012
Manhattanite Chair for the Battery
Manhattanite Chair is a fiberglass-reinforced polypropylene stackable chair. The surface is slip-resistant and coated with clear matte UV-protective coating; the whole chair is 100% recyclable.
Competition entry; Top 50; Draw-Up a Chair The Battery Conservancy Americas Competition Competition, 2013
Heliofield Flash Cards Book
Art + Energy Flash Cards published by LAGI, 2014; Designed by Paul Schifino, Schifino Design; English/Danish; LAGI is Robert Ferry & Elizabeth Monoian.
Echoing the form and spirit of the great steamboats, Belle House is a multi-functional pavilion that serves Louisville’s Centennial Festival of Riverboats. With 750 square feet of sunlit space, the pavilion can accommodate a wide range of activities, weather it is historical exhibitions, sheltered performances, or Bourbon tasting events. The pavilion celebrates the 100th birthday of the Belle of Louisville with a ten ft height “100” that is adorn with Gypsophila on one side and historical imagery and information documenting the life and times of the Belle on the other. The massive doors pivot open and close to allow visitors to explore the content and interact with the pavilion. The pavilion utilizes a pre-fabricated structural system that enables speedy and economical construction. The membrane consists of polycarbonate corrugated panels that lets light into the space from every angle while keeping rain and wind out. The translucent skin glows at night, becoming a giant lantern and providing a beacon for the festival along the Louisville waterfront.
Competition entry; Riverboat Centennial Festival, Louisville, Kentucky, USA, 2014
CHICA-GO! Bus Rapid Transit Stop
Smart stations are the indispensable backbone to achieve the rapidity of BRT systems. The seamless flow of passengers that saves significant dwell time for each bus is mainly attained by two essential design elements: pre-boarding fare payment and same-level bus boarding. SIZE OF THE STATION: A typical bus stop with marginal size is designed to share its waiting passengers with the adjacent sidewalk. A BRT station with automatic ticket machine must, however, be accessible to all prepaying passengers with enough capacity to accommodate even the peak-hour jams. FLUSH WITH THE BUS: By employing 1:12 (8%) ramps instead of a mechanical lift, CHICAGO! Stations perform a civilized way of transportation without awkward moments from wheelchair users or luggage-carrying passengers. The extra wide ramps and sliding doors facilitate the simultaneous loading and unloading of passengers. ECONOMY OF IMPLEMENTATION: CHICAGO! Station’s modularity with pre-fab truss components is the essential part of design. Tough enough to withstand the test of weather and time, but also gracious to reside in, the no-frills station ensures economic sustainability, safety, durability as well as versatility e.g. to be used as an indoor bike-storages. CHICAGO’S URBAN IDENTITY: The 33”-lifted floating platform, to be fine-tuned to future BRT bus models, gives the unique experience of urban transportation in Chicago. Photovoltaic roof, commercial advertisement, ornamental screens, light-mitigating louvers or even infiltration swales can be easily integrated to the design according to site conditions and local identities to be expressed.
Competition entry; Burnham Prize 2012; Chicago Architectural Club.
Courtyard Psychology: People are not comfortable being 360-degree surrounded by unknown gazes. The phenomenon is commonly observed in most piazza and public courtyards. When a space is too much exposed, it is simply neglected by people and feels deserted. Therefore the best area for rest is its perimeters with the backsides protected by walls. No one sits facing the wall in front of him, but at the same time no one would enjoy collide against the gaze of someone in the opposite units. Therefore we need something in the middle which distracts the gaze. In European plaza a statue or a fountain usually performs the role.In our proposal the magnificent native trees of Jacaranda work as the monument. With its porous canopy and overarching branches the tree provides just appropriate shades and color to the people underneath while maintaining screening function against the gaze. Same Elevator = Your Neighbor: The courtyard is connected to the unit by 14 elevators and 14 staircases. In this kind of building people sharing the elevator naturally engage with each other as a neighbor. It is actually hard to be close to someone who uses other entrance in this driving-convenient condominium. Therefore a group of units who share the same elevator forms the perception of neighborhood. Each entry point becomes the center of psychological territory of each neighbor group. People naturally gather around their own entrance and rarely occupy a space far from their units. Feeling At Home: A common fact observed in most single-family detached houses is that they always have a transitional space from the street to their house. In many cases it is a front yard. Also a house is located little bit higher than the street level, so steps or ramps help to connect each other. The very subtle topographical change and distance actually works enormously to make a person feel arriving at home and to protect the privacy of the house members. In our proposal we suggest to reserve 7 m strip space in front of each entrance as a buffer zone dividing the semi-private rest area from a truly public center of the courtyard. The path in the buffer zone gradually ascends as a person approaches the building. The buffer area is distinguished from the public center by low retaining walls. Different Degrees of Publicness: Communal activities such as conversation with neighbor, dancing together, yard sale or playing of children can better happen in the central area under the trees. On the other hand more private and passive activities such as family bbq, outdoor dining, or outdoor siesta occur on the perimeter of the courtyard. Older people can sit lean against the wall to enjoy weather while young boys and girls shout and explore with each other. Parents can stay calm on the perimeter looking down while kids play on trees and in water.
Competition entry; Honorable Mention; Shamrock Condominium Park Competition; Lima, Peru, 2011.
Kuala Lumpur Riverfront
Competition entry; Invited International Competition; River of Life; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Collaboration with Korea Engineering Consultants Corporation and Group Han Associates Seoul.
Gadeok Island Development
Competition entry; 2nd Prize; International Competition for Sustainable Development of Gadeok Island, Busan, Korea, 2012; Collaboration with Group Han Associates Seoul and NEED Architecture.
Berjaya Jeju Resort
Commissioned project; In-progress
Blow-Up taps into the potential of the street and, through simple means, injects it with new energy and cultivates space for unexpected interactions. Its multiple functions and open-ended programming mirror the chaotic juxtapositions of the neighborhood. Blow-Up is democratic space in a neighborhood where luxury lofts and soup kitchens compete for space as rapid gentrification continues. The form, which is distinctive yet not specific to any one site, is an abstraction of a tree canopy/orchard row. It is informed by the history and etymology of the Bowery which is simply the inaccurate English pronunciation of bouwerij, the Dutch word for "farm". The modular design is comprised of small, prefabricated units that can be easily delivered and quickly erected by employing basic construction techniques using common materials. Two main elements define the Blow-Up streetscape: a 200 ft. long communal table and a giant yellow balloon. A central structural spine makes efficient use of valuable sidewalk space and creates a new dynamic between visitors, vendors, streets, and buildings. Blow-Up inverts the interior nature of conventional tents, and consolidates the structure to the middle of the sidewalk creating a more continuous and open space. The long table invites festival-goers and passersby to have a seat and encourages conversations among strangers. Vendors set up intermittently along the table while the remaining space is open for the public to use however they like; whether it’s having a picnic, playing chess, conducting a board meeting.
Competition entry; Ideas City Street Fest Competition, 2013; New York
Myeongji New City Parks
Today’s urban waterfront assumes multiple roles. They provide places for recreation and relaxation to the people living around or visiting from a far. Successful waterfront of modern cities often becomes a beautiful pedestrian realm including jogging trails, bicycle tracks and view platforms. However, waterfronts are, in many cases, increasingly taking extended responsibility for energy production, land restoration, ecological preservation and even disaster prevention. As a former landfill and agricultural ditches, Myungji Waterfront Park surrounds a newly planned city at the tip of peninsula and faces the relentless wind and wave from the ocean. Bases on the understanding of the authentic character of the 142 ha land, the master plan proposes site-specific solutions in large scale to enhance its existing hydrological realm and to promote biological successions of its ecological colonies while providing unique public realm to the city.
Competition entry; 1st Prize; 142 ha; Estimated completion 2016; Collaboration with Group Han Associates Seoul.
Air Rights - Mission Bay Sky Grid
The malaise associated with post-war infrastructure comes, not from its own existence, but from its sheer scale. Interstate 280’s eight-lane concrete slabs cast shadows as wide as 200 feet in some places. The shadow, accompanied by noise and air pollutants from the high-speed traffic above, effectively ruptures the pedestrian flow between the inland and the waterfront city blocks. By removing the section of I-280, the human-scale activity on street level would be dramatically enhanced and open up new possibilities to the two currently split neighborhoods. This coalesce would undoubtedly stitch the two sides together and further connect the city of San Francisco. That being said, we hope to see another alternative - a new public space that represents humanity not only at its best, but also at its most, and not of present-day solutions, but of a reconciling vision that embraces the history because ugly history is also a history that made us at present. The total demolition of existing I-280 structure would bring an inevitable annihilation for the memory of the past in this part of the City and no matter what new design nestles, the landscape of amnesia will lose the authenticity of the area while bringing another manicured, generic and banal standard of this era, which a unique city like SF should reject by all means. By saving otherworldliness of the industrial past, but also maintaining the core function of elevated highway – seamlessly moving people by fully utilizing its unhindered linearity, this time for pedestrians, joggers, strollers, scooters, tourists, ice cream vendors, markets, performances and bicycles rather than motor vehicles, we envision a strategic modification of the structure; the columns and girders/beams on top of them remain, but the slabs are removed to let ample sunlight penetrate through this Grid in the Sky. The scale of I-280 can comfortably accommodate multiple numbers of High Line at once to be shared happily by many different social groups and activities, conjuring an exciting potential to be a truly meaningful public forum with spectacular views commanding the Bay, the Downtown and the Hills, not limiting itself into the aesthetics of imported-from-Europe gardens. The opportunities by this careful conservation-modification hybrid are multiple. Located south of the Embarcadero and working as a critical connection to other waterfront routes, the new I-280 bike path will provide unsurpassed views and fresh air to both the local residents and tourists, and even invaluable paths for commuters, making the place another star attraction of San Francisco. 24-ft-wide main paths on both sides and multiple 12-ft paths in between, supported by the superstructure, are not only just an open space in the air, but an economic stimulator for the whole nearby districts. Below, the fully-available ground level space becomes much more interesting with the overarching structures attenuating lights, hanging interesting art pieces and lights, or simply creating more three-dimensionally defined and protected atmosphere, rather than becomes a strip space along the Boulevard traffic. Cost-wise we speculate that the removal of concrete slabs would be far economical than wiping out the whole, dumping out, and starting from tabula rasa. Thoughtful and systematic disassemble of concrete slabs would also benefit the new construction by providing with the salvaged material.
Competition entry; San Francisco 280 Freeway Competition.
Mapo Oil Depot Park
The design objective of this entry was to envision the whole site, not only the oil tank structures, as a unique urban space providing otherworldly experience in the bustling city of Seoul. As a hidden gem, or an obliterated remnant of the past, the oil reserve is topographically an almost perfect basin surrounded by linked hills, being isolated and then effectively protected from urban activities for many decades. Therefore the true value of the site is the site itself. The architectural or historic value of the old oil structures are only marginal, compared to the potential of the geographical environment. It is nonsense to invest significant fund and tax money to preserve them, repair them and keep them in usable condition for unspecified future period. Policy makers and designers often do not understand the scale of time. It is obvious and easy to expect that the structure will soon cause a series of problems on structural failure, and then public safety. The design vision on the structure should be "temporary", not anything permanent, never. The urgent task is to understand the basin and to implement a preservation plan without conflicting with new uses. The entry proposes mainly on the topic of "access", answering the question of how to create a spectacular way of enjoying the site, with minimal intervention.
Competition entry; Seoul, Korea.
Originally domesticated in the Tehuacan Valley of Mexico, corn crops spread through much of the Americas beginning about 2500 BC. After European contact with the Americas, corn spread to the rest of the world because of its ability to grow in diverse climates. Today, Quebec is a major producer of corn for in Canada. Corntainer Garden presents corn in a new light. In this representation, the plant is extracted from and elevated off the ground, moving into the future as an industrial commodity, beyond its traditional role as food. In addition to being used for numerous food items, like hydrogenated oil, high-fructose corn syrup, and feed for livestock, corn has become an extremely inexpensive raw material and transformed into a number of things, from fuel for vehicles to “eco-friendly” diapers. The garden showcases corn in three forms and in various states: raw plant, construction material, and commercial gardening product.
Competition Entry; International Garden Festival, JARDINS DE MÉTIS / REFORD GARDENS, 2014
From the outside, Strawpography appears to be an agromonolith, but curious visitors will discover that it contains an unexpected interior landscape. The rectilinear perimeter walls give way to an undulating surface that dips into the ground and then rises into the air creating a perch overlooking the East River and Manhattan.
The structure is built entirely out of standard straw bales from local farmland. This agricultural product becomes the building block for the folly, creating a unique tactile structure that engages all the senses. Visitors are welcome to touch, pull, and jump on the friendly organic material. As children toss handfuls of hay into the air, an earthy aroma fills the space, juxtaposing agricultural smells with urban industrial sights.
With no prescribed programs or uses, the folly encourages and endless variety of interactions. The terraced bales form a nest-like configuration that provides a generous platform for leisure, exploration, and meditation. Depending on the occupants, the space can become a playground, an overlook, an outdoor living room, a performance space or even a castle. In addition to adding a strong sculptural presence to the site, the folly is also an extension of the relatively flat landscape allowing visitors to access elevated panoramic views of the city and the park.
The Folly is 100% recyclable and easily built with only communal manpower. The standard straw bale (14”X18”X36”, 40lbs) is readily available and very affordable. After the folly is disassembled, the straw will be distributed to local landscape projects.
Competition entry; Folly 2013; Architectural League of New York
The folly we propose for Socrates Sculpture Park is an earth building with ancient forms of architecture; a hill and its Siamese-twin hollow with pyramidal section, without foreign material from outside of the park, by simply digging up the ground and piling beside. It’s an aerial sculpture of big V, a strong statement of “here” in a character-seeking post industrial community. The flatness of the Park in topography and hydrology as well as tour processes is dramatically overturned by the emergence of the trapezoidal clones. While the hill and slope provides viewing platform over the entire site with proper seating opportunity that lacks in the Park currently, the hollow shows the microclimatic process of water, shadow and plants. The art installations are viewed more three-dimensionally rather than from a fixed horizon as now. After the termination of use, the hollow is simply refilled with the hill and returns to the pre-disturbance state of neutral level. However, this archeological process meanwhile reveals and shares the history of the site by showing its long-hidden underground and artifacts found during the excavation.
Competition entry; Folly 2012; Architectural League of New York