Design Research Seminar (Sparkman)

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Design Research Proposal

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Charles Sparkman
M.Arch 2012

Les Halles: Urban Laboratory of Paris
Advisor: Peter Waldman

My design research will build upon my work in Paris on the Nix Fellowship. The work will focus on the public space of Les Halles as a laboratory of the city. With each successive generation, Les Halles was leveled, excavated, and reconceived as a manifestation of the current urban ideology. Therefore, the site is layered and tells a cyclical narrative of the shifting ideologies of the city. However, Les Halles remains untouched by the current generation of urban thinkers.
I will research and envision ways of responding to current ideas of urbanity including: mass movement of people, a nuanced understanding of site preconditions, an interest in revealing the underground infrastructures and underpinnings of the city, and issues of territory and identity in a globalizing city. My work will begin where my Nix Fellowship left off. With a spatial knowledge of the entire site history, I can begin to imagine and implement various site strategies. I will define a series of urban manipulations (both large-scale as well as strategical incisions) that emerge from my design research and develop an iterative series of models for the site. The scope of the project is not yet defined, as I believe that I will generate: a master plan for the entire precinct of Les Halles, a building-scale intervention that will reveal the underpinnings of the city, and a human-scale intervention that can be repeated across the site. In the spring independent studio, I will commit several of these strategies towards a more resolved “exquisite corpse” for Les Halles.

Written by csparkman

August 26, 2011 at 12:00 pm

Posted in Uncategorized