The investigation begins with the comprehension of networks and flow; understanding that from venation to entire river systems; flow networks operate entirely on the variables of scale and climate. A pervasive example of how human intervention has created problems with scale and climate is the drowned ecosystem of Lake Powell; once the location of a beautiful twisting river, this oasis in the arid Arizona climate teamed wildlife.
Today sits a stagnant pool of murky water behind Glen Canyon Dam, where a mass of essential nutrient filled sediments collect in the river bed. Through the re-distribution of this material and the decommissioning of the dam, how can the impact of a growing ‘mesh infrastructure’ correlate to the restoration of both a desert river system as well as the surrounding community?
From the synthesis of the man-made and the natural; to the creation of ‘hyper-public’ spaces, the flow of an ultimate local material will form into an infrastructure which creates ephemeral internal pockets of life in the drained canyons, while creating a literal platform for a new community to emerge. In order to create the actions necessary for building these synthesized man-made and natural formations, one most first understand the sediment as a building material.
Through an intensive series of experimentation in the flow of water and calcium carbonate [the main aggregate found in the sediment of the Colorado River] one can begin to understand how the material will act. With the realization that disruption in the flow creates formations with this material, a ‘designed turbulence’ will ultimately determine how these synthesized spaces are created. Alluding toward the idea that just as the natural river carves out its canyons, and deposits its alluvial sources to create rock formations, this designed network will mimic those actions to create natural formations with man-made intentions; as form follows turbulence.
Status: School Project
Location: Page, AZ, US
My Role: Designer