Architecture Design Core Studio II

The Core 2 studio builds on the Core 1 skills (geometry, representation, abstract structural and inhabitation issues) and expands the constraints of the architectural problem to include issues of urban site logistics, cultural and programmatic material, and long span structures. It is structured in terms of two longer problems that are meant to dove tail together, without requiring the students to carry all the lessons of the first shorter exercise into the second longer design problem. The site remains the same for both design problems ensuring that the students' understanding of the urban context (cultural and formal) builds up over the course of the semester. The site is an active public transportation node, which both guarantees a user group for the projects and requires strategic touching down and lifting off the ground. The first problem comes with minimal additional program, but it requires roofing over the transportation node with particular performative (rainfall and lighting) and egress rules. The second problem engages the program of a medium sized library that brings its own series of performative constraints to an already complex site.

Together these exercises introduce disciplinary issues that range from siting, through inhabitation, sectional and spatial proposition of the building, to the performance of the outer envelope. Throughout the semester the emphasis is placed on the clarity of intentions on each of the above listed registers, and by extension, on the choice of the appropriate architectural and representational solutions. However, the emphasis on clarity does not also mean pre-meditation of every move, this semester is highly iterative, and the clarity of design intentions is expected to result from an intelligent and diligent pursuit of ideas through constant reworking. Questions of who this institution is for, and how it needs to perform (programmatically and culturally) will be foregrounded, involving thus a conceptual definition of the user and a concomitant set of architectural and physical implications.