Boyle Heights is an oasis to Downtown Los Angeles; it has always been a safe haven for its keepers, Jewish, Japanese, Mexican, Russian and Yugoslavians have lived in its 20,000 home structures. Boyle Heights was built on the farms that provided nutrition for LA’s beginning. The fields are now gone, a forgotten territory encased by the massive interchange of freeways, but the 100,000 strong dense population of immigrants make their presence known today.
The Problem: Ron Paul, a candidate for the 2008 National Elections becomes president; with him a big government is crippled, the policing of the world ends, our earnings are localized; the IRS is shut down, all the inefficient Departments close, the power is shut down.
The neighborhood is quickly readapted to survive on the earth, un-blurred by artificial needs it reaches out for life aggressively. Effective methods for supporting life are developed in an ecosystem that is ruled by the sun. Presently, inhabitants reconfigure their old-Bungalow style homes to suit their large family needs by converting into duplexes, garages to businesses, vans to dormitories,
private outdoor stairs attached to facades, and living rooms into hair saloons; so naturally the overarching design strategy is this method of localized modifications. Firstly, houses are raised from the ground plane; creating a new openness on the first level of the entire suburb. The space directly below the home is still primarily used as a living room setting for its family but it is also takes on a more public function for the neighborhood, allowing for the goods that are produced to be sold from the home. The wood structure hovering above is the hyper-interior, the family’s sacred space primarily used for sleeping.
In order for the neighborhood to operate as an autonomous organism that can connect to the natural ecosystems, the homes collective will need to perform with one another. Each family takes on the tasks that they are best suited for. Property typology was researched and studied so that each house would be converted according to its existing strengths; for example, a small home with a large yard could easily become an agriculture center and a big home with a large roof surface area could gather more energy from the sun. Existing structures are the pivots for the grasping invasion. With these aggregated systems, a new interconnected network of utilities would privately power the city.
Status: School Project
Location: Los Angeles, CA, US