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Architecture That Rises To The Occasion

Addressing rising sea levels and how they effect coastal communities is a current concern in the field of architecture.

As the environment changes, engineers and architects must also facilitate inventive ways to respond to structural needs.

There is an increased interest in specific construction strategies, such as responsive designs. Some innovative building ideas come from a student project from Harvard University Graduate School of Design students in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The goal was to design a concept for a city that may exist in the future that would respond to increasing threats to coastal communities at risk of rising sea levels.

The studio, called Flux City, contained participants who were assigned to teams, and along with project coordinators and professors they came up with models of cities that are meant to accompany the possible future landscape of the coastal region. The projects considered water territories and aimed to address what forthcoming communities may need structurally to keep up with a changing climate. Jamaica Bay was chosen at the site point due to its diverse habitat and surrounding landscape.

The students had to address adaptability as well as environmental concerns in relation to the creation of the cities. They took an ecological standpoint along with an updated view of systematic change and actually conceptualized ways to renovate urban life. The architecture takes a creative approach in finding a happy medium, or a middle ground in its structures. The responsiveness of the landscape and buildings is considered, along with flexibility and adaptable efforts that adjust to changing needs.

After completing work in the field and researching the area the students came up with their final designs. The featured projects are interesting, to say the least.

One of the projects, titled Living with Flux, is an inventive notion for a respondent future city. It is like an elevated island that floats among the waterway, and it is capable of managing and filtering the city’s runoff water.

Architecture That Rises To The Occasion

Image source: Living with Flux by Jing Guo and Meng Jia

Sediment City is another concept that incorporates a potential for increases in bad storms and high sea levels. The city consists of reactive, shifting islands made from dredge materials.

Architecture That Rises To The Occasion

Image source: Sediment City by Jenny Corlett and Michele Richmond

An additional model called Eco[net] seeks to include conservation along with city living in an encompassing infrastructure. It has systems which operate as surface drainage areas and also includes specialized grey water filtration.

Architecture That Rises To The Occasion

Image source: Eco[net] by Zhewen Dai and Takuya Iwamura

Including architectural elements alongside of nature and its predictable un-predictableness makes for exciting construction developments and resourceful ideas.

All images are from Urban Omnibus.

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