Linking vacant building
Amalgamation as Architecture
A linear building program
Laurentian School of Architecture, 2009
Sudbury, Ontario; Educational
Sudbury has been on an economic decline since its waning mining industry. In a renewal response, a new school plans to link and reuse many of its abandoned heritage buildings. The institute allows local pedestrian to permeate and exchange thoughts with the current students - for whom will become our future city builders.
[Click Images Below]
Linking/Reusing vacant building
Inspiration: Canadian lumber
Inspiration: Sudbury's mines
Within walking proximity, these were identified as vacant and unused buildings, along with assets like parks and libraries.
The focus is to revitalize the high street of the city, Elm Street.
The typological development of architectural school. Is there a new type - a linear programmatic typology?
The school program in a linear organization that optimizes operation and site relevance
Various program and site assets show seamlessly mix (For application, see next image)
Architecture has always relied on communication to turn ideas into reality. The intricate drawn plans of the Renaissance master builders, the details of Mies van der Rohe, a painting by Zaha Hadid, all serve to convey the message of the architect. Today, more then ever before, various forms of communication, fast and efficient, are at all our fingertips. How will we use them and what does it mean for our schools of architecture?
Sudbury is on the decline. Once a leader of economy, it now decays as its people find they are without work or demand. Yet people supply the most valuable commodity in today’s market, ideas.
In this project we have sought to rethink the way in which a school of architecture functions, to this end we have based our design on the network of communication we believe is at the core of emerging architecture and on the connectivity between school and community. It is the communication systems that will drive the future of the practice and the people of the community, who will supply the ideas that will drive Sudbury into a vibrant future.
The existing schools of architecture we studied all follow one of four similar styles in their layout. Braking with these styles we propose a renaissance in the design of architecture schools. A linear design linking the various points of activity in a similar fashion to the manner in which different servers in a network might be linked. Using the existing buildings on the site (with both a sustainable and conservationist agenda), we have inserted the school’s spaces in a checkered array that allows for pockets of retail and community activities to fill in the empty pockets, recreating the tapestry that is the fabric of downtown Sudbury. Essentially, the individual spaces within which the school’s activities are housed stand as special designs of their own, each stemming from the structure or space in which it was developed. Knowledge, in the form of the library, then flows through the school’s spaces, linking them and the buildings they are contained in via a network of bridges that both mark the school’s presence and create a visual transparency between school and street.
In this manner, the school itself becomes a linear network of communication and through further transparency is enhanced, opening spaces into which the public is led by the refiguring of the sidewalk. In this manner, we propose a linking of community and school in an attempt to breed a dialect within which new ideas might flourish both in the student’s minds and those of the community, constantly feeding each other.