The Cooper Union School of Architecture
Fall Semester, 2005
Professors Lebbeus Woods, Kevin Bone, Mersiha Veledar, Jennifer Lee
Architecture Expo: «Urban Verticality»
What does ‘verticality’ mean for architecture designed for an urban setting, other than merely ‘tall buildings?’ How does the vertical impact the horizontal, and vice versa? How might people inhabit spaces built above the ground? What new uses might such spaces serve or inspire? What principles for the organization of spaces should be applied? What structural systems might be conceived to serve new types of space, use, and urban organization? These and other questions were confronted during a semester devoted to exploring Urban Architecture.
The idea of creating an Exposition on the tabula rasa of the southeastern edge of Governors Island, facing the Buttermilk Channel and Brooklyn, was determined to be the best format for the work of the students and faculty. Each student developed the concept, program, and design for a demonstration building to be placed on the site, with emphasis on how it addresses, in architectural terms, urban verticality. Each design was developed through plan, section and other drawings, as well as models, all at a minimum of 1/16 scale. In addition, the students were responsible for relating their projects to one another through the design of adjacencies and other spatial relationships of an urban nature. The result is an Expo of unique and exploratory buildings and spaces that is now, with this exhibition, «open to the public.»