Archinect
Paula Banda, Assoc. AIA

Paula Banda, Assoc. AIA

Los Angeles, CA, US

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Ground the Underground

UG THESIS 2012

It can be argued that architecture begins with a site, but not all sites start on the top. A site is deep and has an artificial ground; a portion of “land” that no one sees. Architecture refers to it as infrastructure. Indeed, it is amongst the most overlooked element in the city’s urban fabric, yet it has the most unrealized potential.


This thesis will rectify the disconnection between the natural and artificial datum as an attempt to utilize infrastructure as an interdependent element, which shifts and unifies the urban fabric.

The climate changes call for both challenges and opportunities for delta cities all over the world. Specifically Rotterdam, a city dominated by infrastructure is constantly subjected to high levels of water due to most of the city lying under sea level. Rotterdam is currently situated in what is known as Levee Ring 14; an interconnected ring of flood defense that encircles a large section of the Netherlands. It is constantly transforming as city on water.

This scenario has led the thesis to re-imagine infrastructure as an opportunity to ground the underground. By using the existing levees as a new urban ground, Rotterdam can reclaim land.

This project attempts to create a new site that is adaptable to constant interaction between the natural and artificial conditions. Levees, which were once the artificial ground, will allow for the city to reclaim new land.

 
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Status: School Project
Location: Rotterdam, NL

 
Elevation
Elevation
Development over 200 years
Development over 200 years
Interior condition
Interior condition

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