Andrew Edmonson

Andrew Edmonson

Ruston, LA, US


AISC Steel Competition, 2009/10

The intent of this project and reasons for choosing this site for the new Re-ligare Center, is for this new facility to be a catalyst for renewal on an individual and collective level for the people living and working near historic downtown Shreveport, LA. The program states, “…the building will provide a necessary retreat from real world dis-seases, promote healing, and foster a re-connection at the individual and collective levels.” The individual being the inhabitants of Shreveport, and the collective will be Shreveport’s downtown as a region and the people concerning this area. For this proposal I hope to renew an historic part of downtown Shreveport as a new element in a forgotten part of town rarely used anymore. Most of the buildings on this block are abandoned minus two that are being or have been renovated. The Re-ligare Center will bring renewal to this area of Downtown Shreveport. The site itself is on Texas Ave southwest of downtown between the Allendale neighborhood and the business district. With this location I hope to bring these two demographics together in a place where healing is fostered.
The idea behind this particular project is for the architecture to reconnect and renew its users to them, as well as to the site, through a solid/void programmatic and spatial relationship. The site offered an opportunity that lends itself to this relationship. The site chosen is an empty lot on Texas St. with only the front and rear facades remaining, leaving the memory of a once significant part of downtown. To restore this site, I’ve chosen to keep these artifacts and incorporate them into the design, allowing the users to experience the overwhelming history of such a unique place. The building itself is majorly situated on the lot directly behind it, where the majority of the users will enter. Inside the main building, is a void made from glass and tubular steel, which sits directly in the middle of the center and serves as the main circulation. This void represents the “void” in our lives that is created when we have lost connection with ourselves in such a fast paced world and also the relationship between the two parts of the Re-ligare Center. Adjacent to this, there is the void’s compliment, a solid, situated inside the vacant lot, which is a structure of also mainly steel and glass, which rotates and tapers as it extends towards the sky. The two intersecting grids of the two areas of Allendale and Downtown Shreveport inform this rotation. There is a walkway connecting the solid and the void to complete the process of reconnecting. Inside the solid is where the meditation and yoga spaces are located and where people can come to finally slow down and reconnect.  

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Status: School Project
Location: Shreveport, LA