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Erica Li

Erica Li

Los Angeles, CA, US

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The City

BIG DUMB BUILDINGS. THE STUDIO PROJECT WORKS AT THE INTERFACE OF A HEAVILY ENGINEERED RIVER, WHOSE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE IS BEING ALTERED, WITH A HISTORIC NEIGHBORHOOD AND LARGE PIECES OF TRANSPORTATION INFRASTRUCTURE. STUDENTS ARE ASKED TO CONSIDER THE SITE, BOTH BUILT AND NATURAL, AND DISTILL FROM IT A SET OF PRIORITIES AND OPERATIONS THAT NEGOTIATES THE COMPLEX INTERFACE BETWEEN THE STATIC URBAN ARTIFACT OF THE BUILDING, A VARIABLE, DYNAMIC RIVER AND A CHANGING URBAN CONTEXT. THIS WILL BE EVIDENCED THROUGH DRAWINGS AND MODELS.

The Los Angeles river, for decades an either forgotten or ridiculed piece of Army Corps of Engineer’s can-do infrastructure of the 1930’s, has recently become the center of intense scrutiny and public monies. It would be difficult to over exaggerate the transformative impact its revitalization would have upon the city. In many places, such as in Lincoln Heights, Frog town (Elysian Valley),

and SCI-Arc’s own Arts District, the map of desirable real estate could literally invert - making what had been the city’s alley into its front door. This studio intends to introduce the students to this important urban development. While the studio only tangentially work on the Los Angeles River proper, it consider the proposed changes to it and their ecological implications. Over the course of the semester we study the current plans and their attendant controversies, tour the river, and meet with individuals involved in the various projects for and near the river. The project develop from a considered analysis of the precedents examined as it is implemented within a particular urban and environmental context.



 
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Status: School Project
Location: Los Angeles, CA, US
My Role: designer