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    Mobile Transactions - Thesis Defended

    By Nkiru
    Feb 13, '09 9:58 PM EST

    My thesis is defended. I had an exceptionally difficult time and taking a look at what I produced, after a three week, post defense detox, I still feel as though it is unresolved. A sad thought but not an entirely hopeless one - I have already spied an upcoming competition that will allow me to explore my thesis further.

    So here it was -

    This thesis intends to learn from Lagos’ “publiccongestion” infrastructures to create a new architectural typology: The drive through market, an intensification of the interchange market phenomenon.




    Lagos is a modern third world megacity in a rapidly urbanizing world. Seventy per cent of its economy is grounded on unregulated markets. In anticipation of the future densification of the megalopolis, its transportation infrastructure will be atomized to facilitate an unprecedented magnitude of collective inhabitation.





    So this became my thesis - accommodating a space for trade and transactions on an infrastructural scale.

    The thesis jury included Sarah Whiting, Geof Manaugh, Nadar Tehrani and Albert Pope. I posed as a retail unit sails representative from the year 2020.In 2020, these conduits carry thousands of people traversing the urban plane daily. They accumulate into a public realm of hyper congestion. The drive through market typology emerges from these zones of staccato flow, accommodating the multitude of transient consumers. The atomized structure was called ' Calatrava-esque' and the attempt to discuss the project from the perspective of a hyper- capitalist future, where these traffic freeway-scapes are being throughly exploited for profit, was unappreciated.



    I was not entirely phased though. I have heard the Calatrava comparison to my work even before I began architecture school. This thesis is concerned with issues of urban density and public space. The project suggests a site where public space may emerge in the future megalopolis, cities such as Houston, London, Tokyo, Miami etc. The freeway network is already the new public space of many modern American cities, it's scale dwarfing other built structures. As these cities grow and densify the appropriation of these vast structures for transient activities (formal and informal) will become more common place.




    • cobra

      Of all forms of transportation infrastructure, I believe freeways are the least socially inclined. Markets of varying scales already exist in trains, planes, subways, etc. From the imagery and text, it is difficult to understand your proposal. I am interested in more information about your plan for utilizing the ebbs and flows of automobile traffic as a market place -how you look to the future for cues in the new ways in which automobiles will be used for personal transit and the ensuing impact on a new typology of market"place" -how do you see this new logistic working socially?

      It is quite cool to continue to flesh out your ideas in future projects. My feeling is you will be looking back to this project to some degree for a long time...

      Feb 15, 09 3:02 pm  · 

      Criticism of the project if centered on the problematics of a hyper-capitalist future seem to miss the point. Markets world wide are a site of public/private intercourse and social interaction. Already the Lagos slow go conditions on traffic jams (as evidenced in Koolhaas's film) are site of such interaction on a low level.

      It seems to me that you are simply providing the hard infrastructure to facilitate the already existing soft infrastructure.

      Furthermore while public transportation is nice an all especially if we figure out low emissions zero carbon cars (electric et al) such scenes will not be going away.....They might in fact get worse.
      Therefore it seems silly to not be willing to engage substantively with solutions to relevant problems..

      As for the Calatrava gripe. I mean he isn't my fav designer but so what... It seems the concept/structure is the more useful/interesting part of the thesis anywhose...

      Feb 15, 09 11:26 pm  · 

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