JASON BK AN, cca m.arch thesis 2013-2014


Reading Response: Alex Wall, Programming the Urban Surface



Wall’s perception of the modern built environment is eerily similar to my analysis of Los Angeles. Wall argues that the contemporary metropolis isn’t an urban core with periphery zones but an interconnected network of different hubs of activity. He goes on to say that this network is what we should focus on as designers. He sees this network as a surface that facilitates access by working as a collector and distributor.

However, what most interests me about this article are the examples he provides.


Superstudio, Supersurface 5

A relentless grid lays across the landscape indiscriminately, acting as the purest example of a network surface.

Archigram's Plug-In City

Archigram’s Plug-In City

A crane that moves along a 3 dimensional grid adds, removes, and rearranges pods for flexibility in space and program.

OMA's Parc de la Villette

OMA’s Parc de la Villette

Consists of static horizontal strips, adaptive large structures, and movable small structures.

Chemetoff, Tramway, St. Denis and Bobigny

Chemetoff, Tramway, St. Denis and Bobigny

The tramway’s surface blends into the street surface and runs through isolated sectors, linking previously fragmented areas.

Eduard Bru, Vall d'Hebron

Eduard Bru, Vall d’Hebron

Designed to form “whirlpools” and “deltas” of impromptu programs along linear flows of circulation.

West 8, Schouwburgplein

West 8, Schouwburgplein

Deliberately empty to create opportunities for “indeterminate futures,” giving the user the power to make this place their own.

OMA's Yokohama Masterplan

OMA’s Yokohama Masterplan

This space was only occupied between 4-10am with shipping traffic. To create more opportunities for 24 hour programming, the surface was folded to create more pockets of space.

FOA's International Port Terminal

FOA’s International Port Terminal

The floor becomes the building technology, forcing users to rethink openness and enclosure.


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This entry was posted on July 21, 2013 by and tagged , , .
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