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Blurring the disconnect :
b [inter]positioning place within a struggling context
h [electronic resource] /
by Eric Luttmann.
[Tampa, Fla] :
University of South Florida,
Title from PDF of title page.
Document formatted into pages; contains 118 pages.
Thesis (M.Arch.)--University of South Florida, 2008.
Includes bibliographical references.
Text (Electronic thesis) in PDF format.
ABSTRACT: Downtown Tampa, a struggling city core, will continue to struggle as it holds no true identity to its relationship with important surrounding context, as well as within itself. Evidence in the lack of inhabitable, urban spaces with the scale and comfort to support integral human activity on a day-to-day basis has resulted in the absence of a city center within downtown. One lost opportunity for downtown is its disconnection with the University of Tampa, one that could result in an activated edge condition. As UT appears vertically congruous with downtown, it has no relationship as it is separated from it by the river. The key to blurring the edge at this instance could be aided through an inhabitable, urban space activated by the neighboring student population, as well as individuals working within downtown. The site I have chosen is the existing Curtis Hixon Park and Kiley Gardens, directly across from the University, providing a wonderful opportunity to blur the disconnect. It is also situated amidst forces from all directions, including the central business district and residential areas within downtown's nucleus, thus creating an inter[positioned] quality within the site. One issue to deal with on the site is determining the manner in which the project meets the two main edges, downtown and the Hillsborough River. One source that will become a major infl uence on the concept will be that of Peter Eisenman's text "Blurred Zones: Investigations of the Interstitial." This text will allow me to understand another contemporary architect's ideas of that of the in-between. Thus, site conditions and modern culture will intertwine in the creation of an urban landscape situated within a struggling context to serve the public as a destination within downtown Tampa.
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Advisor: Michael Halflants, M.Arch.
University of Tampa
t USF Electronic Theses and Dissertations.
Blurring the Disconnect: [Inter]positioning Place within a Struggling Context by Eric Luttmann Master of Architecture School of Architecture and Community Design College of Visual and Performing Arts University of South Florida Major Professor: Michael Hal ants, M.Arch. Joe Toph, M. Arch. Michael Crawford Date of Approval: November 18, 2008 Keywords: University of Tampa, Between, Interstitial, Downtown Tampa, Forming Space, Hillsborough River, Twiggs Street Copyright 2008, Eric Luttmann
Acknowledgements Thank you mom and dad for always believing in everything I have ever done. None of my accomplishments would have ever happened if it were not for your love and support. Thank you Mark for always being there. I am glad that I have a wonderful brother to share my life with. Aly, I donÂ’t know how to put this into a small paragraph. You have always stood by my side through the good and the bad. You are my other half. To the future, I love you so much. I would also like to thank Professor Michael Hal ants. It was always a pleasure working with you. Thanks for always pushing me to look at my projects in different ways.
Note to Reader The original document contains color images. Though it is not necessary to understand the graphics in gray scale, they are better represented in color. The original document is on le with the USF library in Tampa, Florida.
Table of Contents List of Figures Abstract Introduction Case Study #1: [de]Humanized Public Space within Downtown Tampa Case Study #2: A Plan Study Space as... Case Study #3: Porosity and Boundary Case Study #4: Materials Site, Concept and Innovation Case Study #5: The old Tampa Bay Hotel The Site The Location The Importance of the Location Programming the Site Problem Statement Hypothesis Building Information The Main Users Goals Zoning and Ordinances Waterfront Design Regulations Waterfront Overlay District Site Analysis Site Characteristics Circulation iiii viii 1 7 12 19 23 27 30 30 30 32 32 32 33 34 35 39 39 43 43 45
Downtown Edge Conditions Forces Twiggs Street Extension [de]Forming Space A conceptual design study Concept, Context and Continuity The Inside of the Cut and Program Systems Integration Inside of the cut _Concrete Outside of the mass_Perforated Metal Diaphragm_Orange acrylic Interaction of systems Material Studies Natural, Arti cial and Architecture Sustainability The Section Model Process Models The Final Presentation and Conclusions Bibliography 49 51 53 56 61 68 74 76 78 81 82 85 91 95 98 108 114 117ii
List of Figures Fig. 1 Abstract proposal collage Fig. 2 Gaslight Park at typical weekday lunch hour Fig. 3 Gaslight Park lunch hour Fig. 4 Gaslight Park during work hours Fig. 5 Gaslight Park after work hours Fig. 6 Park as transitional space Fig. 7 Cross section through space Fig. 8 University of Cincinnati campus plan Fig. 9 Connection diagram Fig. 10 Compressive areas diagram Fig. 11 Division diagram Fig. 12 Variation section Fig. 13 Edge conditions Fig. 14 Variation sections Fig. 15 Pep rally parade Fig. 16 Section cuts Fig. 17 Natural porosity Fig. 18 Corner condition Fig. 19 Between space Fig. 20 Porosity through the boundary Fig. 21 Continuity across the boundary Fig. 22 Continuity within the boundary Fig. 23 Layers and porosity 1 Fig. 24 Layers and porosity 2 Fig. 25 Conceptual materials 1 Fig. 26 Conceptual materials 2 Fig. 27 Concrete Fig. 28 Corten steel Fig. 29 Structural steel Fig. 30 Welcoming vestibule space ix 8 8 9 9 10 10 13 14 14 15 16 17 17 18 18 19 20 20 21 21 21 22 22 23 24 24 25 25 27iii
Fig. 31 Node space along street Fig. 32 Porous lobby space Fig. 33 Main axes and connections Fig. 34 Aerial showing beyond downtown Tampa Fig. 35 Zoomed in to show site and adjacent context Fig. 36 Extents of site and little context Fig. 37 Programming adjacency bubble diagram Fig. 38 Programming, site and main users Fig. 39 Night-time activity Fig. 40 Daytime and temporary activity Fig. 41 Site sections and references Fig. 42 Conceptual pedestrian Fig. 43 Radii and walking distance Fig. 44 Proposed pedestrian circulation routes Fig. 45 Programming diagram and main connections Fig. 46 Proposed water taxi and routes Fig. 47 Vehicular access Fig. 48 Downtown edge conditions Fig. 49 Scattered gathering places Fig. 50 Growth from within Fig. 51 Real forces grids and river Fig. 52 Making the connection Fig. 53 Forces conceptual UT and downtown Fig. 54 Twiggs Street extends to and across river Fig. 55 Street extension and programmatic functions Fig. 56 Proposed connections and programmatic functions Fig. 57 Unformed object in a eld of nothing Fig. 58 Series of three showing formation of space Fig. 59 Series of three showing building reacting to space Fig. 60 Formed space and buildings in x-ray to show variation Fig. 61 Final space diagram porosity in both directions Fig. 62 Context Diagram extending the downtown grid to the river Fig. 63 Context Diagram establishing the connection between downtown and UT Fig. 64 Context Diagram creating the necessary continuity across the site 28 28 29 31 31 31 33 35 37 38 44 46 47 47 47 48 48 50 50 50 52 52 52 55 55 55 57 58 59 60 60 61 62 63iv
Fig. 65 Master plan Fig. 66 Space along river beneath overhang Fig. 67 Corner at Twiggs extension Fig. 68 Twiggs Street extension Fig. 69 Pedestrian connection from afar Fig. 70 First oor plan Fig. 71 Within space Fig. 72 Dave and BusterÂ’s signature logo Fig. 73 Water drop Fig. 74 Watermelon Fig. 75 Exploded axonometric of all systems Fig. 76 Concrete protrusion into space Fig. 77 Vertical openings and bamboo as screen Fig. 78 Screen pulls away from building Fig. 79 Screen on outside of initial cut Fig. 80 Diaphragm wall pushes through screen Fig. 81 Diaphragm wall nished with orange acrylic Fig. 82 Main structural beams lock into diaphragm wall Fig. 83 All systems 1 highlighting diaphragm Fig. 84 All systems 2 overall from downtown Fig. 85 All systems 3 overall from Hillsborough River Fig. 86 Concrete form work before the pour Fig. 87 Concrete sitting in the form work after our has cured Fig. 88 Concrete showing reverse texture of screen Fig. 89 Concrete showing the different pours Fig. 90 Screen pulls away and creates the texture Fig. 91 Materials used to construct screen Fig. 92 The smaller parts of the assembled screen Fig. 93 Process to construct begins with steel work Fig. 94 Bolts connect panel to panel and sheet the angle Fig. 95 The cross-bracing keeps the panel together Fig. 96 Bamboo forest courtesy of Wikipedia Fig. 97 Bamboo shooting up through void created by oor plates Fig. 98 Curtis Hixon park side as park blends with inside space Fig. 100 Typical solar array Fig. 101 Typical Florida sun is harsh 65 66 66 67 67 68 70 71 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 81 82 83 84 85 86 86 87 87 88 88 89 89 90 91 93 94 96 96v
Fig. 102 Montage of overall section model Fig. 103 Section model large volume space Fig. 104 Section model diaphragm wall pushing through Fig. 105 Section model main entry court space Fig. 106 Section model looking through in elevation Fig. 107 Section model space between concrete shell and building Fig. 108 Section model interior lobby space and main volume Fig. 109 Section model Just enjoying the view! Fig. 110 Section model Look at all those ridiculous perforations Fig. 111 Section model exposing the structure and volume space Fig. 112 Section model overall image 1 Fig. 113 Section model overall image 2 Fig. 114 The original concept model using the word Â“betweenÂ” Fig. 115 Concept model basswood and missing chunk as datum Fig. 116 Concept model every piece builds upon the last Fig. 117 Formal model showing between space Fig. 118 Formal model zoomed out to show entire site Fig. 119 Systems model beneath overhang Fig. 120 Systems model looking at formed space Fig. 121 Systems model overall image 1 Fig. 122 Conceptual systems model interaction Fig. 123 Conceptual systems model structure and space Fig. 124 Conceptual systems model systems integration Fig. 125 Final systems graphics and material studies Fig. 126 Final graphics and models laid out Fig. 127 The nal presentation set up and ready to roll..... 98 99 100 101 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 107 108 108 109 110 110 111 111 111 112 112 113 114 114 115vi
Â“To deny the traditional place or enclosure, suggests another condition off this displaced architecture that is interiority. Interiority has nothing to do with the inside or the inhabitable space of a building but rather of a condition of being within.Â” Peter Eisenman vii
Blurring the Disconnect: [Inter]positioning Place within a Struggling Context Eric Luttmann ABSTRACT Downtown Tampa, a struggling city core, will continue to struggle as it holds no true identity to its relationship with important surrounding context, as well as within itself. Evidence in the lack of inhabitable, urban spaces with the scale and comfort to support integral human activity on a day-to-day basis has resulted in the absence of a city center within downtown. One lost opportunity for downtown is its disconnection with the University of Tampa, one that could result in an activated edge condition. As UT appears vertically congruous with downtown, it has no relationship as it is separated from it by the river. The key to blurring the edge at this instance could be aided through an inhabitable, urban space activated by the neighboring student population, as well as individuals working within downtown. The site I have chosen is the existing Curtis Hixon Park and Kiley Gardens, directly across from the University, providing a wonderful opportunity to blur the disconnect. It is also situated amidst forces from all directions, including the central business district and residential areas within downtownÂ’s nucleus, thus creating an inter[positioned] quality within the site. One issue to deal with on the site is determining the manner in which the project meets the two main edges, downtown and the Hillsborough River. One source that will become a major in uence on the concept will be that of Peter EisenmanÂ’s text Â“Blurred Zones: Investigations of the Interstitial.Â” This text will allow me to understand another contemporary architectÂ’s ideas of that of the in-between. Thus, site conditions and modern culture will intertwine in the creation of an urban landscape situated within a struggling context to serve the public as a destination within downtown Tampa. viii
Fig. 1 Abstract proposal collageix
Introduction Downtown Tampa is isolated as an island, held in place by the Hillsborough River and Tampa Bay. It seems as if this isolation has resulted in downtown becoming a dead zone within the Tampa Bay area. However, it is the lack of inhabitable, urban spaces with the scale and comfort to support integral human activity on a day-to-day basis that has resulted in the absence of downtown as a city center. It is the simple fact that the pedestrian has been completely erased from the downtown streets. This area known as Â“downtownÂ” ourishes from nine to ve, Monday through Friday, and then pulls a complete one-eighty otherwise. Even during the normal workday, the streets seem almost bare as they are not pedestrian-friendly places to walk. This thesis will consider these facts to be absolute until something well-conceived is put in place to alter the perception that downtown has credited to itself over its lifetime. The most important factor in this thesis is the proposed development to support integral pedestrian activity. This will be looked at through two different lenses, one being those who already work and live in downtown, and the other being those out in the suburbs within a reasonable walking distance. The latter, those who reside/work in the outskirts, most importantly students and faculty of the University of Tampa, will become major players in how the edge of downtown is blurred/developed. Looking through the rst lens, it seems that this intervention wants to have its face inwardly focused, towards downtown, and the latter, the opposite. This instance is where the concept to blur the disconnect has been de ned. Blurring the edge at the instance where downtown crosses over the river will happen at the University of Tampa. With that said, the proposal to blur this important connection lends a perfect opportunity to develop the existing Curtis Hixon Park and Kiley Gardens. This site, within downtown, has been one of intense discussion and attention 1
over the past few years. There have been numerous, proposed design failures to feature the likes of the two former mentioned urban parks. The reason that past attempts have failed are partly due to the fact that they offered nothing more than what was already there. Variation, shade, human scale and specialized nodes of activity could be the beginning to the conceptual formation of development, and these parks currently lack exactly that. The Kiley Gardens, although beautifully landscaped and shaded, offer no break from the norm. They are simply an ongoing, repetitive and shady area with an amphitheater used primarily as a homeless shelter. The design; however, also failed due to the lack of maintenance and care. The city has not kept up on the beauti cation process necessary to keep a park of that prestige in original working order. Another reason why it has failed is due to the fact that not many people know that it is even there, or how to get up to it. Both important edges, the downtown and the Hillsborough River, are blocked off by its inwardly focused plan. Concrete walls border the entire park allowing for only workers of Bank of America Plaza to fully enjoy it. On the other hand, Curtis Hixon Park lacks everything but the fact that it is on a remarkable waterfront site overlooking the University of Tampa and downtown skyline. Curtis Hixon Park struggles to sustain any type of activity due to its lack of spaces relating to the human scale. The vastness of the grassy eld and lack of shade, to name a few, suggest that this is not a place to inhabit, but a wasteland used only as a pass through. This thesis is not aiming to eliminate what is there, but build upon it. For example, the grassy plain could be a wonderful place to throw down a blanket and have lunch, or throw the football with a friend; however, the size of the eld does not promote activity as it is unkempt and overwhelmingly large. The partial renovation of Curtis Hixon Park, fortunately, is currently in progress. The new Tampa Museum of Art designed by famed architect Stanley Saitowitz and proposed ChildrenÂ’s Museum are slated to face the existing parking structure on the north side of the park. Using the proposed site plan as a starting point, the southern portion of Curtis Hixon Park remains to be resolved. Thus, the 2
proposed site shall entail portions of the two existing urban parks discussed earlier. Using the remaining portion of Curtis Hixon Park and a section of the Kiley Gardens, an inter[positioned] development will respond and react to the different factors around it, including but limited to the central business district, the adjacent residential structures within downtown and the University of Tampa. In doing so, research will be prepared in areas such as case/precedent studies, qualitative research as well as some materials studies/research. The rst research method will result in knowledge of already completed and possibly historical work. Case/precedent studies will allow me to understand other individualsÂ’ thoughts and ideas as their works were built or accepted for a reason. Three main examples I will be looking at are the University of CincinnatiÂ’s Main Street, ChicagoÂ’s Millennium Park, and 3xnÂ’s Museum of Liverpool. These examples, and possibly others unknown at this point, should back up work to be done through the progress of this thesis. The second research method will be qualitative research. Through the process of interviewing important individuals, knowledge gained will be bene cial in designing a place to accommodate those who consistently inhabit the area. Those interviewed will range from students and faculty of the University of Tampa to those who work in the buildings currently grounded in the downtown district. The third research method is one that could become not only interesting, but favorable for the future of construction. Material studies/research will be conducted for two reasons: 1) as a sustainable effort and 2) as means for contesting shoddy and wasteful construction. Something I am truly interested in is how a building is constructed. While designing in past studios, I was always hesitant to design something that I couldnÂ’t somewhat gure out how it was constructed. As a research tool, it will be nice to look at and play with FloridaÂ’s most commonly used building material, concrete. While I have always been fascinated with Morphosis as an innovative architectural practice in their material palette of concrete and metals, this thesis could look at ways to incorporate those two materials into a possible tectonic screen system. Similar to the work of Of ce da, I envision the use of those two materials in an experimental way, one that would further enhance the conceptual framework for the project. 3
Of ce da is one of the premier practices in regards to materials investigations. Their work, ranging from interiors to entire buildings, always seems to integrate the material as a conceptual tool, and not simply construction matter. Works such as the Rose Art Museum and Witte Arts Center intentionally push the envelope even with the use of traditional materials such as brick and concrete. It is this kind of experimentation that I believe will be bene cial to the concept of this thesis, as the idea of blurring and the interstitial seem to beg for an experimental style of architecture. Â“Suppose for a moment that Architecture could be conceptualized as a Moebius strip, with an unbroken continuity between interior and exterior (Eisenman-Visions Unfolding 22).Â” This quote, although read at the scale of a buildingÂ’s relationship to the immediate exterior, has a much deeper impact on this thesis. Ways to create continuity between downtown and the University of Tampa, as well the continuity of the central business district with the proposed site are grounded as major concerns. This continuous effort can be seen as an effort to connect downtown with its peripheral developments; however, it is critical that downtown maintains its identity as an isolated island. There must be an obvious difference/edge between a downtown and its tangential, suburbanized developments. Nevertheless, there should be a connection between downtown and one of its historical gures. The University of Tampa, as it appears vertically congruous with downtown, has no relationship as it is separated from it by the river. The key to blurring the edge at this instance could be aided through an inhabitable, urban space activated by the neighboring student population. Â“To deny the traditional place or enclosure, suggests another condition off this displaced architecture, that is interiority. Interiority has nothing to do with the inside or the inhabitable space of a building but rather of a condition of being within (EisenmanEn Terror Firma 126).Â” This quote states the very reason this thesis has been devised. The notion of interiority as the idea of being within represents the spatial idea envisioned. What downtown Tampa needs is a Â“placeÂ” comfortable to inhabit at different times during any single 4
day. There needs to be that place where an inhabitant feels within downtown, but on the river. This place should be comfortable in relation to its scale and comfort to any human being of any age or culture. The culture of downtown Tampa relics that of all of its vertical structures, and that is one of apathy. There is absolutely no passion or quality to the spaces within downtown. What I am trying to prove with this thesis is that of space as Â“place,Â” one that utilizes to its advantage the surrounding context and factors. As it responds to the built, designed and natural environment, it must also react to what the users of it want and need. Also, the design of not just the buildings on this site within the conceptual framework, but the creation of the park space[s] as in-between spaces within the site becomes one of the more imperative aspects. First and foremost, this in-between place must be activated by the everyday users of downtown. This means that the individuals who live and work in the immediate area become the generators of activity, along with the students and individuals from the University of Tampa. I do not believe that this place would be hard to program and lease, as it uses to its advantage the location within downtown, and on the river. This could be a wonderful place for not only pedestrian users, but also for the commuters who live out in the suburbs, although this thesis does not primarily reach out to them. As a list of deliverables is created for the production of this thesis, site analysis and diagramming will take precedence as there are many issues to resolve from a site standpoint. This thesis will be designed for the macro and micro scale, from the idea of this project situating itself within the Florida climate to the comfort of individuals within the various spaces. A trip to study spaces comparable to the ones imagined will happen in the rst part of the Thesis 1 semester. This trip will be bene cial in regards to program placement, park scale and relationships, as well as human interaction with the site. As for this project as a phased development, Thant Myat and I have discussed the possibilities of our two projects and their importance to our area. The use of the river in his thesis, and the blurring of the disconnect between downtown and the University of Tampa in mine, offers many opportunities to better the city in which we live in. 5
In conclusion, this research thesis will deal with the importance of downtown as the city center. How this happens is inherent in the initial quality of the city, for example, cities such as New York and Boston. A city such as Tampa, despite fantastic location, climate and business opportunities, has fallen victim to that of suburban sprawl. This thesis does not deal directly with the issue of sprawl, but of what sprawl has done to downtown Tampa. It has been left with nothing, as there is no iconic place, object or building that allows downtown Tampa to stand on its own. Not saying that Tampa can compete with the likes of New York and Boston, but that it completely lacks everything necessary to stand on its own. The sprawl has taken all after-hours activity out of the city center, and what I am trying to prove is simply that a place, an icon, an urban landscape within downtown will succeed through careful design and utmost intention. 6
Case Study #1: [de]Humanized Public Space within Downtown Tampa The important aspect of a public space is that it lends itself as a comfortable place to inhabit. The only true function of a public space is to accommodate the common person. The public space must want to be inhabited, as it needs the activity of gathering to survive. With this said, how have such spaces not found their way to the Tampa Bay region? It seems as if they have lost their way somewhere to the north. Is it true that a public space relies on its location? The answer is yes! However, it is also true that a space in the perfect location must be designed correctly to accommodate for the location. Thus, the argument can be made as to what is Â“placeÂ” versus Â“waste.Â” According to Merriam WebsterÂ’s Dictionary, a Â“placeÂ” is de ned as Â“a distinct condition, position, or state of mind.Â” To me, a distinct position refers to that one spot where everything begins to be realized. In design, we refer to such a distinct position as an experience. What kind of experience does an architectural space create, and what does the experience do to an individual. With each individual having their own personality, the experience of a certain place will differ according to who the person is. The experience of a place will also change within a person as they grow older. Therefore, one place does not evoke the same emotion twice. An experience of a place also deals with many factors aside from simply the experiencer, as climate, weather conditions, time, etc. also play a large part. So why is it that the downtown, public spaces emit a similar type of experience almost everyday? Why do the public spaces in Tampa lack the activity and quality to truly act as an architectural Â“placeÂ” within a city? The answer is not easy to come up with or understand as many factors have assisted in the negative development of the park spaces. In Tampa, these open park spaces have the ability to be wonderful gathering places. For one, they can serve the public as the only refuge from the summer Florida heat; however, these spaces have 7
all been designed and planned so terribly. The location of the space and accommodations that the space provides are vital to it being a successful, humanized place. Tampa has seemed to disregard any sort of humanization efforts when planning their parks, in that they do not have what it takes to acquire and maintain activity, thus ultimately creating dead spaces within a city. Even at the lunch hour, on a typical weekday, is the park teeming with nothing but openness. As a study, I have looked at TampaÂ’s nicest downtown space, Gaslight Park. This park was as dead as dead could be, at lunch time! How does this sort of thing happen, especially with the bordering streets being marked off for pedestrian access only? A part of this study dealt with me sitting around to watch as the activity changed according to the time of day. The lunch hour was obviously the busiest in regards to people using the park for what it was meant for. Though it was not very crowded, the few who actually sat down in the park only stayed for a half hour. After that, the park was absolutely dead. Until around 4:30, when people started to get off of work, there was not a soul sitting in the space. Additionally, when people did start to ood the streets, it was as if it was only a migratory pattern of birds ying north for the winter. No one person stopped to rest amidst the shady park, but used it as a pass through to get to their car, and out of the city for good. Fig. 2 Gaslight Park at typical week day lunch hour Fig. 3 Gaslight Park lunch hour8
And nally, the time when downtown begins to wind down for the night, as it should not arrived. Only a few people walked the streets. The park was barren, and I was the only tourist within the city. Downtown Tampa is now closed, and shutting its doors for the night to kick the rest of its inhabitants out until the morning. The aerial three images shown represent the study area and the people within the area at each speci ed time. The images represent the amount and location of people in an abstract manner. People are represented as orange dots on the aerial, and their locations are very close to exact. The difference in time of day is obvious when noticing the amount of orange on each image. The most intriguing one is the last illustrating the time after normal work hours. You can notice that there are a lot of people on the streets, but almost none enjoying the public space. It is also clear that even though it was overcast, the few people in the park were under the tree canopy. This study is mostly a look into how the spaces ineffectively serve the downtown public as gathering places. From the image above, it appears that a park like this would be successful in Florida. There is suf cient shade to cover all benches and pathways. There is ample seating to provide for many workers to sit and eat lunch, and the paths are wide enough to support the space as a gathering and transitional space at the same time. Now, what is wrong with the picture above? I believe the obvious answer is to note Fig. 4 Gaslight Park during work hours Fig. 5 Gaslight Park after work hours 9
that there is only one person in this park, and he is on the very edge of it. Being that it was an overcast day, the shady trees were not even a necessary component of the park on this day. That meant that people did not need to enter the park for shade and comfort, but could pass it up and not even realize it is there. The one main problem is illustrated to the right, and that is the issue of the park being purely a transitional space for people to walk through. It is clearly obvious by the last aerial image of the park and adjacent areas after work hours let out, as well as this image shown to the right. The design of the park allows for movement at the corners of the park, thus pulling walkers in from the intersections. This is good to pull people in, but not to keep them in. The axes determined by the park disregard the grid of the city by allowing people to leave the grid, to only reach it again through a shortcut. From watching people after work, it was clear that this park was purely a shortcut to take a straight shot across the block. At any one time, the crosses will be lled by people walking through them. The good thing, however, is that the paths are so narrow that it requires a sort of human interaction as two people pass each other. They must recognize the other coming and make an honest effort to cordially allow each other to pass freely. What this does not do is create a good environment to sit down in. The sectional Fig. 6 Park as a transitional space Fig. 7 Cross section through space 10
quality of each of the crossing paths is evidently not allowing of gathering, as a person sitting would trip anyone walking by. In conclusion, this thesis will take the ideas gathered from this study to attempt to create a successful urban place within downtown. What I see happening in Gaslight Park is that it is not the least bit active even though it has a nice quality to it. The design of the park as an object in itself is great, however, not so much as it sits in that exact site. The site is everything when creating an open space, and that is why I chose to use Curtis Hixon Park and the Kiley Gardens. I believe that the area mentioned along the river has the potential to be that same idea of a transitional space, but shine as a gathering Â“placeÂ” for downtown and the University of Tampa. The thesis site will attempt to create the space with the necessary accommodations to in uence gathering. The programming, location and approach are vital characteristics to open spaces, as these will be the main ideas to be developed. Finally, the creation of Â“placeÂ” will take form and be able to call downtown Tampa its home. 11
Case Study #2: A Plan Study Space as... The University of Cincinnati, looking for a way to reconnect two sides of its campus that seemed to be disconnected by the athletic elds, devised the plan for Main Street. This area to be known as Main Street would now be the home to many mixed-use programs, as well as the new campus recreation center designed by Morphosis. This building, along with others to be designed for this Main Street project, truly conceptualize this broken connection. For this study, spatial implications and how nodes activate the space will begin to inform design decisions within my own thesis. What factors contribute to the success and failure, if any, of this space? What, beyond the obvious design decisions of this space contribute to the active quality of the space? What is the relationship between building and space, between building and building? From studying the plan of this space, it appears as if only to lter people through, from one side to another. What I am trying to prove is how this space was not used to lter people through, but to maintain people within? The between spaces not seen from an aerial image, the niche spaces allowing one person to get away from the crowd are one way to hold the traf c within. Others will be discussed and analyzed further into this study. The connection between the Campus Green and the rest of the university allowed for such a space to be developed. Similar to my thesis in scale, function and program, this project will be used as an ongoing analysis for the development of my thesis. Emphasizing the importance of continuity in connection as well as the maintenance of inhabitation within remain strong conceptual drivers. Where on this map is Main Street? Is it not that obvious. What is obvious differs between good and bad urban design? In good design, one notices the left over space between the buildings. In bad design, one notices the objects standing amidst a eld of nothing. Main Street 12
ful lls its role as an essential piece of the University of Cincinnati campus plan puzzle. Its place as integral point within the overall campus circulation is what makes it so successful. This case study will serve primarily as a spatial plan study to illustrate Main StreetÂ’s importance to the campus. Typical spatial characteristics observed in this study will bene t the research and design sides of this thesis. As a design study, the spatial qualities evident through this study will help determine the success of a similar space proposed for Tampa, as though it is not a college campus, but a gathering place for humans to enjoy and relax in. The spaces studied respond to their user as well as the design of the campus. Fig. 8 University of Cincinnati campus plan image courtesy of the University of Cincinnati13
Through this study, three different spatial ideas will be presented as original to the design concept of the actual space. These three studies will be demonstrated through visual diagrams thus representing concepts to be utilized within the thesis design. They are as follows: 1) Space as Connector, 2) Space as Divider and 3) Space as Variation. The rst two diagrams illustrate the idea of Space as Connector The space highlighted acts as a connecting space between two sides of the university. The rst diagram implies the uidity of space between the two sides. This connection applies to the actual design concept for Main Street. It was designed as the broken link between the two ends of the University of Cincinnati campus. This uidity discussed previously created that necessary link between the residential and the academic. Along with Main Street, vital program elements were placed to allow for the space to be as successful as possible. The second diagram, highlighted in yellow, begins to zoom into the connecting space, showing the compressed spaces. These spaces are strategically placed to signify entry points and important nodes where gathering tends to happen. Main Street compresses at speci c instances to provide for gathering; however, the ends of the space pull the user in. The ends have program elements such as the Campus Recreation Center designed by Morphosis, and the main athletic Fig. 9 Connection diagram Fig. 10 Compressive areas diagram14
facilities, including the football stadium. The second idea derived from this study is that of Space as Divider. The spaces highlighted represent what was existing before Main Street was proposed. These two spaces appear to be severely disjointed from not only each other, but also from the buildings that are among them. There is no real relationship between the space and its context. It is as if the bones in our body were oating around with no tendons holding them together. Main Street acts as that connective tissue between the disconnected spaces. One interesting note is that of the scale of the disjointed spaces. Using the size of the football eld as a reference, imagine standing on the 50 yard line. Now imagine the end zone being the nearest building to where you are standing. Would that space be comfortable and inviting to you? The large green space on the top right of the image could t almost four football elds into its vast open area. This scale relationship is necessary to show scale relationships of space to human. This idea also refers to the relationship between building and exterior. Besides Main Street, the buildings to the periphery have no relationship between interior and exterior. The continuity within Main Street does not lack this continuity, as the variation of spaces and relationship between them is discussed in the next section. Finally, Space as Variation is the last concept, and it is a continuation of the second. The images on the previous pages show the relationship of the spaces to each other at the macro scale. The difference between the divided space and connection space is clearly evident in the diagrams, making Main Street a most valuable piece of the University of Cincinnati campus plan. Main Street solidi ed the creation of the open spaces at either end of it by presenting a situationFig. 11 Division diagram football eld used to understand scale of spaces 15
where the scale changes, and the space compresses. This variation of space implies that nodes of activity are present, making the best spaces comfortable for gathering. This is why this project is so successful. The varied experience of space continues to the micro scale. Within Main Street, the spaces uctuate in and out, creating niches and voids for inhabitation. The building facades move in and out to create areas of relief from the crowd. The idea of designing the buildings and the space between them simultaneously is what truly makes a space great, as this space truly is the connective tissue holding the buildings together. The space between the buildings is where human life happens. This idea of variation of space begins with the edge condition along the space. Main Street contains many variations of spaces and sub-spaces. This variation acts as a relief from the vastness of the spaces on either end. Within this overall space, daily activities such as shopping, eating and reading take place. There are also special events that take place, and one that stands out is the pep rally parade that happens through it every year. With the adjacency of the athletic elds, the location of the campus recreation center, and the mixture of program uses, this area of campus tends to be the most active at any point of any day. The following images emphasize this variation idea, one highlighting the edge conditions Fig. 12 Variation section diagrammatic section drawing showing the idea of varied space 16
Fig. 13 Edge conditionswithin the space, an photograph of a pep rally parade showing the activities that can happen in such a space, another image showing the same edge conditions with section cut references, and a series of section cuts illustrating the variation which occurs. This variation is one horizontally and vertically. As seen in the previous diagrammatic section, the space varies as an individual on one level can interact with an individual on other levels. This occurs at certain spots to promote activity and gathering. Horizontally, or in plan, the space varies from a minimal twenty ve feet at spots to a vast one hundred and fty feet at others. Fig. 14 Variation sections17
Fig. 16 Section cuts numbered from one to nine Fig. 15 Pep rally parade image courtesy of the University of Cincinnati18
Case Study #3: Porosity and Boundary This study in three dimensions will look at the way buildings relate to their surrounding conditions. In the case of this thesis, ideas of porosity and architecture culminate in an ideal way. How is the concept of porosity related to building and architecture. There are many ways to look at this relationship; however, this study will zoom in on relationships such as interior to exterior, natural to arti cial, and individual to building. The point of this study is to look at architecture that explores similar concepts, and to create a starting point to jump from, as the idea of the in-between has a lot to do with the concept of porosity. This concept of porosity con icts with ideas of edge and boundary. According to Wikipedia, porosity is Â“a measure of the void spaces in a material,Â” and could apply to the condition of adjacent spaces in architecture. What could be the advantages of a porous building? Ideas of boundary imply the interruption of a space due to a hard edge condition. This hard edge can be a wonderful design approach under many circumstances; however, this thesis deals directly with lost connections. These connections, currently broken, need to be remedied through architecture. An architecture porous enough to create space between, but still allow for the connection to happen is vital. The image above illustrates porosity as it happens naturally. As de ned earlier, the void spaces shown determine the porosity. This Fig. 17 Natural porosity image courtesy of Zimmer, Inc.19
concept is relative to architecture, and has been accredited to many architects, most notably Steven Holl. HollÂ’s project, Sliced Porosity Block is the most prevalent example of the concept utilized within the eld of architecture. Holl stated that this project was Â“carved, sliced and distorted to create a feeling of openness while maintaining the sense of inter-connectivity.Â” This project, although turns one city block into a micro-urban core. This creation of porosity and space now remains a seamless opportunity for architecture to relate to its between space. What Holl does in this project is preserve the feeling of intimacy within a space, but still provide the opportunity for connectivity. As it is evident in these images, the inter-connectivity is proportional in its importance to the relationship between the interior of the super block and the surrounding condition as the main openings occur at the corners. The human activity thus creates the opportunity to carve the space, and the space remains the priority. The spaces created are in response to human interaction and interior to exterior relationships. These ideas of porosity and its relationship to boundary becomes very important in the conceptual development of this study, as well as the entire thesis process. How these ideas can progress on Fig. 18 Corner condition image courtesy of Steven Holl Architects Fig. 19 Between space image courtesy of Steven Holl Architects 20
a site in Tampa is the true question, and they will be explored. Through the beginning stages of this study, existing architectural ideas have been discussed in response to the naturally occurring concept of porosity. Steven Holl has demonstrated a nice example of this exploration through the creation of a superblock in an urban setting. This thesis will utilize these current explorations as a starting ground for the development of some conceptual design guidelines to be followed through the entire thesis process. These guidelines will assist in determining future design decisions. The guidelines are determined through a de-constructivist style of architecture. This style implies just as it sounds, a de-constructed form around and within space. The space will ultimately be the primary element, and each decision will further inform that. The main design component of space will maintain its hierarchy through these guidelines, and they are: 1) porosity through the boundary, 2) continuity across the boundary and 3) connectivity within the boundary. The rst guideline states that the design should allow for porosity through the boundary of the building. This means that the necessary connections to be made will be done so through the intervention, thus emphasizing the hierarchy of the between space and its allowance through and beyond the scope of the architecture. The second guideline relates more to the relationship between building and landscape. How does the natural landscape ow through the structure, thus illustrating the importance of the space as connector mentioned prior. Though this issue os similar to the rst, it is original as the boundary must only be conceptually blurred, and not physically. Finally, the third guideline determined is a purely internal issue. Fig. 20 Porosity through the boundary Fig. 21 Continuity across the boundary Fig. 22 Continuity within the boundary21
How does this concept of the between space continue into the interior portions of the building? How this study relates to the thesis is evident in the design decisions related to ideas of the in-between and connectivity A porous building allows for the connection between the Kiley Gardens and Curtis Hixon park. It also allows for a wonderful relationship between downtown and the University of Tampa. It does not stop there as it promotes continuity at and within the bounding walls of the intervention. Through the use of materials and systems, boundaries can become spaces in themselves. The boundaries can also become the between spaces. To the right is a combination of layers superimposed on each other illustrating the conceptual idea of porosity. Determining openings and the connection between openings remains integral in connecting one space to another, and one open space to another through the building. This porosity allows for the integration of interior and exterior while not forcing complete punctures through the building. As a continuation of this case study, [de]Forming Space is a conceptual design study to further investigate the premise of porosity and connectivity. The conceptual study is located after site analysis in this document. As an original take on HollÂ’s design considerations for his Sliced Porosity Block this conceptual design initiative uses the space between buildings as the premise. The idea begins with a cube, and ends with a space between two buildings. The hierarchy is emphasized when each decision made re ects from the space to the building, and not the other way around. Fig. 23 Layers and porosity 1 Fig. 24 Layers and porosity 222
Case Study #4: Materials Site, Concept, Innovation Buildings, are made of materials. What does each material mean to an architect, to a particular project? What metaphorical ideas can a material such as concrete represent? What about metal? And wood? This case study will be looked at as conceptual materials analysis. The creation of a gathering place through ideas such as in-between, connectivity and porosity allow for material opportunities to be explored. What a material can represent is endless, as the material directly relates the building to the human. The human inhabits the space which is carved out of materials. These materials receive the touch of a curious child, and the bottom of a resting elderly couple. How does each individual react the a certain material or assembly of materials? What kind of emotions can a material bring out of someone as they meander through the space envisioned in the previous conceptual study? In this particular instance, concrete and metal will be studied conceptually and physically for bene cial properties and relationships. Concrete is as a exible and moldable material an architect could work with. The allowance of shape, scale and punctures through make this one of the most interesting materials to work with in cases such as my own. Dealing with conceptual ideas of between and porosity allow for the form to be derived purely for the pleasure of the inhabitants. Fun spaces are not simply possible, but a necessity. To not use concrete to its fullest is almost an architectural sin. Metal is a completely different animal. Though it is primarily exible when used in modular construction, each individual piece does Fig. 25 Conceptual materials 123
not represent the moldability and exibility of concrete. The rigidity of metal does not allow for anything new when comparing it to concrete. What it does do is create a different experience, as it usually portrays a cold, timeless experience. The buildings of downtown remain a monolithic language deriven from the price and time constraints given by the construction industry. With the intrusion of the new metallic Tampa Museum of Art, the face of downtown has shifted to a degree. This ultra-modern box of glass and metal offers something new to the downtown area and waterfront. It is this inclusion of out of the ordinary construction that will bene t the further good development of downtown. This thesis will take from the Museum what it has offered, and that is change. Good design has steered clear of the area for some time, and now that we have some, it is already time for more. In the case of this thesis, the two materials will play the part of site, context and innovation. What material does this site propose for me? This question is not as easy as it sounds, as the context on either side shows a completely different face. The Rivergate Tower to the South stands tall in a monolithic tan-colored concrete, while the new Tampa Museum of Art and ChildrenÂ’s Museum metal skins ash in the bright Florida sun. One more important thing to note is the historic quality to the West, as the old, rusted steel rail Cass Street Bridge and shiny metal minarets of UT make face. So the question is asked, what material best suits the conceptual idea, the site, the context and innovation all at once? Fig. 26 Conceptual materials 2 Fig. 27 Concrete24
I believe the answer is both concrete and metal. This site should reinforce the exibility of concrete, while allowing the new ashy museum to take center stage. Typical concrete construction of old should be reinterpreted to create space and allow spaces to interlock. In-between spaces are not merely spaces between walls, or spaces between buildings. They are spaces which an individual feels enclosed and exposed at the same time. There is a feeling of continuity, a notion of inter-connectedness. The connection to the site through the use of metal will allow the project to ground itself rmly amidst the different construction types adjacent to the project. The use of structural steel allows for open spaces unlike concrete. A simple structural grid of steel sections holds as much, and even more than a structural system of concrete walls, while allowing for a more connected space. The openness allowed can constitute for a more enjoying experience, but too much openness can create a sense of disconnectedness. Therefore, the idea to use the two different techniques will allow for both experiences within the structure. The architectural transitions happening on the site thus impose the use of both types. The use of material and skin should ultimately relate to the space in which it encloses. They way the materials interact with the space should be a priority whenever designing a structure, or space, to be inhabited. The voids and openings within these materials manipulate the space creating light and dark areas. The quality of light through a material and its openings create hierarchies. In my Fig. 28 Corten steel Fig. 29 Structural steel25
opinion, good design begins with quality of space and light. The ideas of porosity not only allow for interactions of different spaces, but also allow for the interaction of interior and exterior. The difference between conditioned space and exterior space should not be so divided, and the relationship between them is vital. Where are the openings? Where does one actually transition from the interior to the exterior? This study will nalize in the construction of a tectonic piece emulating the conceptual idea of materiality, layers and porosity. The construction will consist of the materials described above, and they include structural concrete, concrete sun control, structural steel, and corten steel cladding. As a result of this constructed piece, the use of materials and the concepts of light and porosity will be evident. 26
Case Study #5: The Old Tampa Bay Hotel Aside from the historical quality of this structure, the building itself is an amazing piece of architecture for the Tampa Bay area to be proud of. It is not only a symbol for the beginning of the modern era in Florida, but also as a quality built form. The materials used, the spaces inside, and the relationship between interior and exterior are exemplary characteristics of this building, only to name a few. The rst thing noticed about this building is not the nished quality of the facades, but the front porch spaces greeting each visitor before entering the building. As evident in every one of the images presented, the spatial quality of the interior space and its transitional relationship with the interstitial vestibule spaces is amazing. The feeling of being compressed by the tree canopy walking up to the structure is relieved by vertical quality of the vestibule emphasized by the tremendous amount of necessary detail. The user will then again feel compressed for a second when entering the space, only to be relieved by the change in ceiling height and short width of the building. The thickness of the space and location of the glazing on either side of the space allows the interior to spill out, thus making sense of the series of spatial changes. When standing within the structure, amidst the spilling of space, there is a quality of transition inside. It is now understood where the two axes cross inside the building, thus culminating in the main lobby. Fig. 30 Welcoming vestibule space27
The main space can be described in relationship to the thesis idea. The street-like quality of the space is not complete without the cross-sectional idea of spilling out. The idea of porosity and interior to exterior relationships accompany the street room space by creating nodes along the street. These nodes turn into special circumstances where one thing relates to another. In the case of the old hotel, these nodes are points of transition between interior and exterior. They turn into points of gathering and transition at the same time. These points become the spaces that in uence the necessary activity to sustain a working Â“placeÂ” within a larger whole. The nodes will then further translate into the gathering places, as these will become the areas for porosity and connection in the opposite direction. The connection between the old Tampa Bay Hotel and the thesis site will be important in the fact that it will display the programs a historical extension of the University of Tampa. The Tampa Bay History Center will ground itself within Downtown Tampa to solidify downtownÂ’s connection with UT. The street room spaces are the area where the connection can be made, and this will be emphasized through an architectural language. Though this building contains a lot in the sense of horizontal space and transition, it lacks in the vertical. The facade expresses a quality of verticality that it lacks in the spatial relationship on the interior. There is no connection between each oor, or even between the exterior and the Fig. 31 Node space along street Fig. 32 Porous lobby space 28
upper oors, with one exception. Within the vestibule spaces before entering the building, there are balconies extending out from the second oor. These balconies represent the only vertical interaction between levels. These levels remain isolated however, and vertical circulation is hard to nd. The staircases are cramped and uncomfortable, meaning that vertical connectedness was not important at the time it was built. However, the more important spatial circumstances were dealt with as climate issues, and not experiential. Being in the Florida climate, vernacular design was necessary at the time to passively cool and heat the spaces. The location of the glazing and deep overhangs protect from the harsh sun, while the porous rst oor and siting allows for the prevailing breeze to cool the space. Fig. 33 Main axes and connections29
The Site The Location Located on North Ashley Drive, the site will comprise portions of existing Curtis Hixon Park and Kiley Gardens. The downtown Tampa site is located on the bank of the Hillsborough River, across from the historic University of Tampa. The inherent quality of this site lies in its location as a buffer between downtown as an isolated island and the surrounding suburban context. As a part of the Cultural District, this proposed project will accompany the new Tampa Museum of Modern Art and ChildrenÂ’s Museum on the site. To the north, the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center holds the corner of Cass Street and N WC MacInnes Place, signifying its place as the head of the Cultural District. To the south, on the opposite side of the Kiley gardens stands the historic Â“beer canÂ” Building. The Importance of the Location This site situates itself amongst many forces from all directions. The two most important being the downtown edge and the riverÂ’s edge. The site also contains a major elevation change, as portions of the two parks, Curtis Hixon Park and the Kiley Gardens, will be used. This change shall take an important role as to connect the two parks and relate them to one another. All of these forces will manipulate the design of the site, thus the site has that in-between quality. The idea of extension, connection, and the between space will solidify the site as an important part of the Tampa Bay context. Seen on the next page will be a series of images that will highlight the study area. They are shown in different scales, from largest to smallest. 30
Fig. 34 Aerial showing beyond downtown Tampa Fig. 35 Zoomed in to show site and adjacent context Fig. 36 Extents of site and little context31
Programming the Site Problem Statement The site as it stands lacks that necessary realm capable of being inhabited comfortably. Even with the addition of the new Tampa Museum of Art and ChildrenÂ’s Museum, Curtis Hixon Park and the Kiley Gardens still remain un-welcoming and uninviting. Due to the lack of spaces relating to the user, these two urban parks have developed a status of disarray. These two parks, adjacent to each other, have no relationship to each other, as there is only a 12 foot wall as a barrier between them. Even though Curtis Hixon Park rests alongside the Hillsborough River, there is no true connection to it as a valuable resource to the community and its history. Even worse is the Kiley Gardens and its relationship to the river and downtown, as it is elevated to a height that actually hides it away from the pedestrians on the street. Hypothesis Portions of these two parks will become the site. The elevation changes, the siteÂ’s relationship to the downtown, and its relationship to the river and the University of Tampa will become the most important factors as the design progresses. As the site sits on the edge between downtown and suburbia, there is a clear dilemma to be resolved as to the siteÂ’s orientation. I believe that downtown, as it is isolated from its surrounding context by the water should be able to stand on its own. Therefore, the site must rst direct its attention to the city center. Having its face towards downtown allows for the site as an extension from the University, into downtown. 32
Building Information The chosen site shall be created conceptually as: 1) an extension of the historical University of Tampa and 2) an iconic, public gathering Â“place.Â” The two concepts listed above have a direct in uence on the programming aspect of this project. The building types and functions, along with the simultaneous design of form and space between, will guide the programmatic aspects throughout. To satisfy concept number one, a new Tampa Bay History Center will be designed as the focal point in regards to the siteÂ’s program. The history center, as it is currently being constructed, holds no value as to its relationship with the city of Tampa, and its history. The main problem about the new history center is the site that was chosen for it. As far as I am concerned, a historical museum to be constructed within a struggling city should be built upon a site to give it the space it deserves. The Tampa bay area has an extremely rich history which it could build upon, and the site I have proposed will allow for that. The new history center, along with the new Tampa Museum of Art and ChildrenÂ’s Museum, should create a wonderful civic complex to be inhabited at all hours of the day, every day of the year. Concept number two may be more important to the city as concept number one. Incorporating a mixed-use aspect into the site Fig. 37 Programming adjacency bubble diagram33
will create an intriguing opportunity for it to develop as an iconic Â“placeÂ” within downtown, as there is no place like it currently. Designing for both concepts now provides the necessary program to create a wonderful public space for the city. The use of these two functions in accordance with exterior space between them is the basis for this thesis project. The Main Users This site, in its location, is designed to target two speci c user groups, but to accommodate for users of all ages and locations as well. The two major groups targeted consist of 1) the typical, everyday user of downtownÂ’s buildings, and 2) students and users of the University of Tampa. Though they both are required for this project to be successful, the former users must create the trend of gathering within this urban development. This development is there for the people of downtown as there is nothing for them currently. They need a space to have lunch during their lunch break, and a place to hang out after work on Fridays, as well as during the week. Every Friday after work hours expire for the week, International Plaza becomes the hot spot for these individuals who work inside the borders of downtown. Yet, they must leave downtown, and go to one of the sprawled developments to hang out. The question I am raising is why there isnÂ’t a place like this within downtown itself. WouldnÂ’t it just be easier if you could walk out of your building and over to the complex of civic and commercial functions along the river. To me, a dinner on the river would be a better end to work week, and not a 20 minute drive against traf c, to the other side of Tampa. The second user group should help de ne this space as one used at all hours of every day. Students will be attracted to this site as it is directly across the river, and given the access to a pedestrian bridge, would most likely use this space over any other public space on or off campus. Not the history center, but the mixed-use portion shall provide a much needed area to hang out away from class, as well as 34
away from typical college living. Also, an advantage of this pedestrian bridge arises because of the new residential buildings going up directly across Ashley Drive. This means that the bridge could function to bring students over from campus, as well as give students the option to simply pass through if they live in downtown. This site and its program will also serve as a multifunctional space, leaving the possibility open to use the open spaces in different ways. Though monthly and yearly activities could take place, it is the daily life that will determine the success of this urban complex. Goals There is one main goal to work toward thinking about the site, and that is to create an inviting, comfortable public space to be inhabited at all hours of the day. For this to happen, certain design decisions must be made to accommodate the two user groups de ned above, as well as others. This will be done through scheduling, as daily activities and design come together to accommodate as many people as possible, therefore creating a Â“placeÂ” for everyone to enjoy. The aspect of day versus night will also become important, as that will determine site design and programming to sustain both.Fig. 38 Programming, site and main users35
Before thinking about the difference between day and night, the day must be scheduled rst to begin to satisfy the wants and needs of different types and ages of people. Besides the main de ned users, the site will be programmed to accommodate everyone as a gathering place. Imagine the site and its location as a place to bring children, adolescents, young and old adults, as well as elders. There will be distinct program elements relating to the different age groups. This is now the point where a schedule should be determined to validate the site as this Â“placeÂ” designed for all. The main design feature of the thesis will be the pedestrian street as a continuation of downtownÂ’s Twiggs Street. This is where all of the main entrances will happen for the history center and mixed-use, though there will be alternate entrances and many ways to enter the space from the adjacent park spaces. Concepts of porosity and boundary will transform the pedestrian street into a transitional space of sorts, allowing people to remain comfortably within the space, or lter through the programmed space on either side. This continuous facet of design should improve the quality and variation of space, reinforcing the idea to connect outside, as well as retain people within. Aside from the pedestrian street, the site is almost overwhelmed with the abundance of adjacent park space. The Kiley Gardens to the South and Curtis Hixon Park to the North will be designed in a way to attract all age groups. Some sort of large lawn space can be used to play fetch with your dog, kick around a soccer ball, or toss a baseball. Shaded areas will be designed to accommodate for picnics, as well as a student wanting to study underneath a tree. Children will want to play in the interactive playground areas while parents watch from a comfortable land-formed bench. The riverÂ’s edge will also acquire activity as there will be a canoe/kayak launch and shing areas. The above mentioned open spaces will act as the binding spaces for the programmatic features. Twiggs pedestrian boulevard and the two parks shall work together to create a wonderful atmosphere, as they hold together this site as a civic complex. Opposite the new history center, on the other side of Curtis Hixon Park, the new Tampa Art Museum and ChildrenÂ’s Museum are currently being constructed. 36
The idea is that the new museums, the mixed-use aspect and the history center will work together to create an intriguing exterior environment between them. Work day, daytime activity will consist mainly of lunchtime visitors from downtown and the University of Tampa. This consistent dose of activity within the city center should improve the quality of life within downtown. This time frame will also attract visitors and tourists, as the river will now be a destination spot within the greater Tampa Bay area. Everyday use of the history center will be mostly by school trips from around the area. I remember going to MOSI for eld trips when I was in middle school in Pinellas County, and I believe the history center will attract in the same way. A portion of the mixed-use will be devoted to student functions, whether it is class rooms, seminars, or research spaces. Aside from these, everyday student activity should consist of the use of the three adjacent open spaces within the site, as well as for lunchtime consideration. A vital time frame to programming the site happens after that nine to ve workday concludes, especially on Fridays. Instead of forcing people to leave downtown due to its lack of destination spots, this site will retain those people, keeping them in downtown. This program aspect translates well into the night activities. I imagine Twiggs pedestrian boulevard lined up with people waiting to eat at the restaurants and bars after work, and into the night. Though the main program feature will be the Tampa Bay History Center, it is the mixed-use aspect that will attract and retain the visitors. It is almost as if the history center will almost be meandered to and through, with the main reason for coming to the site being the commercial functions. Fig. 39 Night-time activity image courtesy of Flickr37
The next issue is the importance of this site as a night time destination. The activation of this site at almost all hours of the night will help determine the success of this project on this site. Other than the usual evening and night time activities, events can happen to bring more people to the city center. The nights and weekends can turn the site into a temporary home for certain functions. Concerts, holiday gatherings, and other similar events can turn the site into an everchanging and vibrant site. I imagine the two park spaces being used as places for temporary events. The site allows for events like this to happen due to its abundance of open green space. The range of events is endless. The possibility is there to accommodate for shorter functions such as weekend markets, daily concerts and arranged frisbee tournaments. There could also be events such as month-long festivals. The more that can be jammed into the program, no matter if it is permanent or temporary, will only bene t the overall activation of the site. Fig. 40 Daytime and temporary activity image courtesy of Flickr38
Zoning and Ordinances Waterfront Design Regulations Waterfront Overlay District (1) Purpose and intent. The purpose of the downtown waterfront overlay district is to: (i) Promote the cityÂ’s downtown waterfront as a community resource, (ii) provide for the orderly development and redevelopment of the waterfront, (iii) ensure high quality design, (iv) ensure public access to and along the waterÂ’s edge, and (v) create a pedestrian-oriented environment along the waterfront. (2) Requirements. The following requirements shall apply to all property located in the waterfront overlay district: a. Waterfront building setback; when required. Any property owner or agent thereof proposing to erect a building or structure on any site in the waterfront overlay district shall provide a twenty-three-foot-wide building setback from the waterÂ’s edge, as measured from the waterside face of the bulkhead. b. River walk; when required. Any property owner proposing to construct a river walk in the waterfront district or any property owner or agent thereof proposing to erect a building or structure on any site in the waterfront overlay district shall construct a river walk in accord with the following provisions: 1. General design requirements. i. The river walk shall be constructed within the boundaries of the twenty-three-foot-wide waterfront building setback area where it has been provided. ii. Within the waterfront building setback area, a minimum of seventeen (17) feet shall be paved (includes two (2) feet for bulkhead wall) with the remaining space to be used for landscaping (trees, shrubs, ground cover, etc., ower bowls/planting beds, seating, signage, etc.) appropriate to each project (paving plan and landscape 39
plan to be approved by the city). This does not preclude construction of boardwalks, overlooks, etc., in addition to the river walk. iii. The elevation along the river walk shall be held to speci cations to ensure handicapped requirements are met. iv. Continuity of the river walk across ownership parcels shall be maintained to facilitate public access use and enjoyment. v. The design of the river walk shall be integrated with all intersecting streetscape designs. 2. River walk design standards. The river walk design standards are established to provide a design framework which requires a certain level of quality, enhances the waterÂ’s edge to attract pedestrian use, and provides a continuity of pedestrian scale and rhythm between ownership parcels. Any property owner or agent thereof proposing to construct a river walk shall comply with the provisions of this subsection and the design standards set forth in the Â“River walk Design Standards,Â” June 1989 edition, which standards are on le in the of ce of the city clerk and are herein adopted by reference. 3. Maintenance provisions and covenant. At the time of issuance of a certi cate of occupancy all property owners constructing a river walk shall be required to execute a maintenance agreement and covenant in which the property owner agrees to maintain and repair all elements of the river walk. The covenant shall be recorded in the public records of the county and shall be binding on all successors in interest. 4. Encroachments. No construction, improvements, structures, decorations, signs, furniture, awnings and displays will be undertaken or placed into or over the river walk without the written approval of the property owner and the city or a river walk management association. 5. Emergency vehicle access. A minimum clearance of twelve (12) feet in width shall be maintained on the river walk pedestrian circulation area (sidewalk) at all times. If re protection systems are not provided ( re sprinkler systems within the building, standpipes on the waterside of buildings, approved on-site re hydrants, etc.), a minimum clear width for emergency vehicles shall be increased to twenty (20) feet. The design and construction of the expanded zone for emergency vehicles shall be integrated with the river walk. 40
(3) Waterfront building setback and river walk variations. Variations of the river walk or waterfront building setback requirements may be negotiated and approved through the CBD development design review process, or may be approved by the city council through the CBD-2 site plan controlled rezoning process, subject to the following: a. Applicable situations. A property would be eligible for variations of the requirements of this article if: 1. The site is less than twenty thousand square feet in size; or 2. The site, due to size and con guration, cannot provide the on land river walk or waterfront building setback and a twenty thousand square-foot buildable area. b. Variations permitted. A property owner that meets the provisions of subsection (f) (3) a. above may receive the following variations through the review process: 1. The property owner may be permitted to locate the river walk or a portion thereof over the water. 2. The property owner may be permitted to vary the width of the waterfront building setback and the river walk. 3. The property owner may be permitted to construct the river walk under the structural portion of a building (i.e., building overhangs and arcades). c. Any property owner in the waterfront overlay district may also apply to the city council for a variation from the waterfront building setback requirement and/or the on-land riverfront location requirement set forth herein. Application for such a variation shall be submitted, and may be approved by city council, through the CBD-2 site plan controlled rezoning process. d. Applicability of other provisions. To the extent that a variation is permitted under the provisions of this subsection, a property owner shall continue to comply with all provisions of the public open space requirements, as well as all remaining provisions of this section. (4) Off-street parking and loading requirements. All new construction and major renovations of waterfront parcels located within the boundaries of the waterfront overlay district, as de ned by this chapter, shall meet the following requirements: 41
a. Parking provisions: 1. No structure shall have parking access on waterside of the project. 2. Surface parking lots on waterfront parcels shall be prohibited; however, temporary waterfront surface parking lots, as de ned in section 27-523, may be permitted as provided in Table 18-1. 3. The number of on-site parking spaces shall not exceed the minimum parking spaces required by this Code. 4. Freestanding parking structures are prohibited, public or private. 5. Parking structures as an accessory use may be permitted in the waterfront overlay district providing the following conditions are met: i. The design of the parking structure and/or the design of the facades of parking structures which are incorporated in the building footprint or which extend from the principal building component shall be architecturally integrated. ii. The design of the parking structure conceals vehicles from grade-level views. iii. The design of the parking structure utilizes landscaping elements or design features to soften the appearance of the exterior facade. b. Off-street loading provisions. 1. Service and loading areas and related access drives shall be located to minimize their visibility from public streets, pedestrian areas and adjacent river walk. 2. All service and loading areas shall be effectively screened from pedestrian view. 3. The city may approve service and loading areas and related access drives which do not comply with subsections (f) (4) b.1. and (f) (4) b.2. above if no feasible alternative exists. (5) Building design, general. a. Building entrance. There shall be a public entrance included on the river walk or the on-site public space. b. Roof scape. All rooftop mechanical equipment shall be screened from view through the use of architectural enclosures designed as an integral part of the building architecture. To present an attractive roof scape, special consideration shall be given to the design treatment of all roof components, including terraces, or portions of the building. 42
Site Analysis Site Characteristics The site is currently under construction, as they are starting to build the new Tampa Museum Art designed by the famed Stanley Saitowitz. The museum is designed as a face to the existing William F. Poe garage on the corner of Cass Street and North Ashley Drive. This museum, designed as two phases, will face the Hillsborough River next to the old Cass Street rail bridge. On the site, the new TMA will be accompanied by a new ChildrenÂ’s Museum designed by the local rm, Gould Evans. This building will address the street and open up to Curtis Hixon Park. These two museums are future constructions on the North side of the site block; therefore, they will be accounted for in the design of this thesis. The built environment on the site block, considering the two new museums, is fairly dense. On the South side of the block, the Bank of America and Sykes Building (aka the Â“Beer can Building) rise up to cap off the site. The block is anchored by two vehicular bridges, the Cass Street bridge to the north, and the JFK Boulevard bridge to the south. The east side of the site is lined by North Ashley Drive, and the Hillsborough River lines it to the west. Directly across the river from the site is the historic University of Tampa. Being in Florida, especially in the Tampa Bay area, the natural site is relatively at, with a slight slope towards the Hillsborough River. Fortunately, for design purposes, there is an arti cial change in elevation on the site that is the current home to the Kiley Gardens and Bank of America Plaza. The change in elevation is approximately sixteen feet above grade. The thesis site will ultimately straddle the elevation change, taking portions of Curtis Hixon Park and the Kiley Gardens. As a way to give back to the community, the idea of this thesis is to redesign and revamp the Kiley Gardens. As the site lies 43
currently, there is an obvious disconnect vertically and horizontally within the site. The vertical disconnect between the elevations is obvious in its state, as there is an overwhelming blank wall as the transition between elevations. The image below illustrates the site, and existing section cuts through it. As you can see, there is a sixteen foot difference between Curtis Hixon Park and the Kiley Gardens. Programming and design decisions will be made to bene t the elevation change, as well as mend the disconnect between the change. Fig. 41 Site sections and references44
Circulation Circulation to, from and within the site remains one of the most important factors in making design decisions. Pedestrian circulation is the key to the overall activation of this site, and will be designed very carefully. Programming the site to allow for an easy, comfortable walk around and within the site is by far the most important design decision in this project. The three diagrams on the next page explain this thesis concept beginning with a larger scale, working down to a scale more relative the activity within the site itself. The rst diagram illustrates distance radii with the site as the center of the concentric circles. Starting with the smallest radius, one-half mile, one mile and two miles are shown graphically to describe the siteÂ’s location and relationship to the rest of downtown, numerically. The reason behind the diagram was to emphasize downtown Tampa as a reasonably walkable city, from end to end. At the average walking speed of three miles-per-hour, it would take less than twenty minutes to walk from Channelside to the site. The second diagram zooms in to illustrate proposed pedestrian routes to, from and within the site. Representing the two main user groups, two different colored lines illustrate where each could possibly enter and leave the site. Green represents pedestrian traf c related to the University of Tampa, most likely students and faculty depending on the day and time. The orange lines represent those who work or live in downtown. The idea behind the intertwining of the pedestrian routes are to represent the fact that the University of Tampa wants to feel like it is a part of downtown, a part of the city. As UT sits currently, it is disconnected from downtown, so a pedestrian bridge will conceptually blur that connection. This thesis works to face inward towards downtown, to invite those who live and work there in, as well as to accept UT as part of its own. Finally, the third diagram illustrates the programming bubble diagram imposed on the site. This shows that the site will be porous, allowing circulation through both vertically and horizontally. The open spaces, how they relate to the building and how they lter through the buildings becomes important to create the urban complex desired. 45
Looking into the future of this site, along the north edge will be the new Tampa Museum of Art and new ChildrenÂ’s Museum. The proposed Tampa Bay History Center and mixed-use development, along with the creation of the between public space and redesign of Curtis Hixon Park, the natural and arti cial landscape will be interlocked to allow for movement of each other through each other. The colored bubbles in the third diagram represent the interlocking of the program requirements. The orange represents the open space, old Curtis Hixon Park and the new public space to be designed in this thesis. The blue and green are the civic functions, with the blue being the proposed history center, and green being the new museums. The yellow shows the mixed-use portion, as it is the closest to actual downtown. With all the programmatic functions, the connective tissue amongst the site is the spaces between the built forms. The public open spaces connect the individual with the building, maintaining a continuous relationship from exterior to interior, and vice versa. The orange arrows cutting through the bubbles represent the conceptual pedestrian routes, the main ones from the University of Tampa, and the other from downtown through the site. Fig. 42 Conceptual pedestrian image courtesy of the Sydney Morning Herald46
Fig. 43 Radii and walking distance Fig. 44 Proposed pedestrian circulation routes Fig. 45 Programming diagram and main connections47
Aside from the apparent hierarchal pedestrian circulation patterns, there are alternate modes of transportation to and from the site. Further access can be had by road, and also by water. The obvious of the two being that the site must accommodate for vehicle commute to and from the suburban sprawled context; however, it is not a determining factor. This thesis bene ts by having an existing parking structure on the site. The proposed access to the site will come by water. The site will be designed to accept commuters off the Hillsborough River, whether by water taxi or canoe/kayak. The rst diagram below illustrates a proposed water taxi service to hit the most active spots in Tampa. Fig. 46 Proposed water taxi and routes Fig. 47 Vehicular access48
Downtown Edge Conditions As an extension from the last section describing the extension Twiggs Street, as well as other downtown streets to the edge. As a phased correction of downtown Tampa needs to happen, this thesis idea serves primarily as a planning and design initiative to change the way development happens. The patterns of development happening in downtown react to many different edge conditions. Among others, the Crosstown Expressway and waterfront are the two main edge conditions to assist in the deterioration of the downtown grid. The following images describe the edge conditions, and illustrate areas for concern. The idea behind this set of images is to show the potential that downtown Tampa possesses, as it can easily be planned or designed to alleviate the broken edges. Though these edges need repairing, the problem is to not blur the edge condition too much. This would only result in a pattern of sprawl, something the Tampa Bay area does not need or want. One issue when dealing with the broken edges is the fact that almost every major gathering place in the vicinity of the downtown area sits across the broken edge from downtown. Perhaps the three main active Â“places,Â” Centro Ybor, Channelside and International Plaza all contain the necessary programmatic elements to attract and keep people. The problem with downtown is exactly that. The typical work day is when all of the pedestrian activity is seen. Aside from the normal weekday, the streets of downtown become barren and deserted. It is with the intent of this thesis that activity does not cease during the after hours. Each and every Friday afternoon, people working in downtown get into their cars and drive away from the center of the city, and out to the sprawled developments. International Plaza sees most of this after work activity due to its bountiful restaurant and bar scene. So the question must be asked, and it is not clearly obvious to what the answer is. Why is there nothing within downtown even close to what International Plaza has? I believe the answer lies in what has been discussed about the broken edge conditions. If these edges are repaired, I think that change is eminent. 49
Fig. 48 Downtown edge conditions Fig. 49 Scattered gathering places Fig. 50 Growth from within50
Forces The thesis site must react to an abundance of forces as it sits on the broken edge between the two main forces, downtown and the University of Tampa. These two, among others, will begin to in uence design decisions to be made. The two main forces mentioned above are vital to the development of this site. Moreover, I feel that though the site does not stop at the river, as it continues across the river. The University of Tampa is one of the most historical places in the bay area, and should be included within downtown, the city center. It appears to congruous, and wants to be a part; however, it is severely disconnected due to a lack of pedestrian activity back and forth. There is no reason for any student or professor to walk over, and likewise, there is no reason for any individual in downtown to go over to the university. This thesis will attempt to alleviate this connection by emphasizing the importance of the university and its relationship with downtown. Reinforcing the connection across the river, the site will accept the downtown grid and its move towards the river. The extension of the downtown grid to the river should bene t the area as it will allow people to easily and comfortably experience the edge as it should be. That said, it is also a matter of extending the University of Tampa into downtown. This force will become the more powerful of the two, and be emphasized programmatically. The new Tampa Bay History Center on the site will act as an extension of the university onto the site through a pedestrian bridge. The diagrams presented will illustrate this connection/extension made. They also illustrate the impact that the river has on either side, forcing the grid away from the edge. This set of images has become an important one in determining the direction of the concept. These two forces, moving in opposite directions, pass by each other within the site. The result of these two forces, and where they come together, emphasizes that there must be something important. The connective between space is thus the result of these two forces, and contributes to the important idea of the space between the buildings. This site presents that new type of space to the city, as there is nothing similar. 51
Fig. 51 Real forces grids and river Fig. 52 Making the connection Fig. 53 Forces conceptual UT and downtown52
Twiggs Street Extension The downtown grid is currently broken at the edges of downtown. These broken edges have been created by the construction of the Crosstown Expressway and lack of meaningful design along the waterfront. The obvious effects of the Crosstown are noticeable looking at an aerial image of downtown, and noticing the creation of uninhabitable super blocks along the entire path as it tears through downtown. The super blocks created are there only because of the pointless highway running right through the center of the city, as if I275 and I4 were not enough. The other areas for concern are probably the most vital to the area for it to survive as a true city center. The waterfront of downtown Tampa has become the most unused and uninviting waterfront due to its lack of good, public design and planning. There seems to be that disconnect between the waterfront and downtown for two reasons, and they are: 1) the city grid tends to die as it gets closer to it and 2) most of the buildings along the river are for private use only. Both of the aforementioned problems will be addressed on the site I have chosen for this thesis. The idea of programming the site also becomes important as that is one of the main areas for concern as the waterfront continues to be developed. However, as I cannot correct the entire city, I am proposing an idea for the city to build upon. This idea results in the extension of the downtown street as a pedestrian boulevard to meet the waterfront. In the case of this thesis, the main between space to be designed has fallen onto Twiggs Street. Though the particular street was not a major factor, it is assumed that each street will eventually have its place addressing the edge where city and water meet. The main reason why the most important pedestrian boulevard has fallen onto Twiggs is the result of the placement of the buildings and how they react to adjacent site conditions, one being the new Tampa Museum of Art, and the other being the Rivergate Tower. The following images are the result of a direct programmatic function study of Twiggs Street and its adjacent streets. The reason for such a study is due to the programming of the site. As this site is meant to attract the everyday downtown user and students across the 53
river, the overlapping of functions is necessary, but to an extent. The city in general lacks the abundance of commercial activity to attract and keep people within the downtown area for an extended period of time. The placement of such commercial and retail functions will allow people to comfortably and willingly stay within the con nes of downtown during the after-hours. This is the main concern for such a project, and should be due to the lack of pedestrian activity on the streets of downtown Tampa. As far as conceptual reasons for the extension of a street to the river goes, the sight of the wonderful University of Tampa should be enough for any person to walk to the water, even for just a moment. The site was chosen for the amazing views one receives when walking towards the river from downtown along on of its East to West streets. A view corridor created by the buildings focus oneÂ’s attention to the shiny metal spires atop one of TampaÂ’s most historical places. The old Tampa Bay Hotel, built by Henry Plant reaches up to the sky, and situates itself along the Hillsborough River. It is easily seen by any pedestrian walking West towards the river. Not only does the street continue to the river, it extends over the river to meet the University. This connection is important, as it was mentioned earlier about it being TampaÂ’s historical gem. The inclusion of the Tampa Bay History Center grounds this connection onto the site, and allows for the connection to be understood by every user of the site. In reference to the case study on the old Tampa Bay Hotel, the view sheds and between spaces within the building re ect the essence of the space created on the thesis site. As one travels along Twiggs Street, nally reaching the site, there will be a reason to notice and go towards the University and the old Hotel. The experiences are to be one in the same, and the experience is meant to travel all the way through, from the old Hotel, within the site and into downtown. Conceptually, this has been the idea all along, and its that of the University of Tampa nally being a part of downtown. It is disconnected from it by not only the river, but the lack of an easy, comfortable way to get back and forth. Now, there is that way, and it should work out to maintain the activity necessary to keep the site happening. 54
Fig. 54 Twiggs Street extends to and across river Fig. 55 Street extension and programmatic functions Fig. 56 Proposed connections and programmatic functions55
[de]Forming Space A conceptual design study What happens to a space between the buildings as it is formed arbitrarily by the buildingsÂ’ form around it? Is the space between buildings simply the leftover space to be dealt with at a later time? The answer is no, in fact it should be the other way around. The spaces that occur between buildings should be developed equally, or even more so, than the buildings that surround them. In this study, the space will be looked at as the rst priority, with no regard to building form, to determine if it should be designed as an equal partner to that of the building form. This study will also in uence design decisions to be made during the conceptual and schematic portions of this thesis. This so called leftover realm in which I consider to be the connective tissue, is what truly holds the buildings together. Without it, the forms fall apart. They donÂ’t work without that relationship between interior and exterior. Humans should be able to enter and exit buildings with the belief that they have not completely left yet, or moved from one thing to another. If design forces the individual to be completely removed from the building before leaving the buildingÂ’s presence, then it fails to transcend the experience the individual needs to have. An architect designs space, not form, so it only seems necessary to begin this study absent of any regards to form. This absence of form will help in determining what it means to inhabit, or be within. This study can also be thought of as a conclusive design analysis to the series of case studies presented earlier. This study will comprise of a simple cubic volume, emphasizing the opportunity with the building and space between the building. The between space will precisely be sliced and removed from the cube as to create that necessary human realm. It seems evident that this study should have a name such as [de]forming space Not only will this study closely deal with the space between, but how the space bleeds through the form, thus causing an interlocking 56
relationship between form and space. This porosity between space, building and space again allows for that continuity conceived as an important facet of this thesis. A continuity between points calls for the ability to ow consistently through the site in one motion. This idea will come to fruition in the re-connection of the Kiley Gardens to Curtis Hixon Park. Currently, a sixteen foot wall is what separates the two urban, public spaces from each other. In this thesis, how to use the building to contain space, as well as to allow space to run through it will begin to appear through this study. In a sense, the buildings are still being designed, but not without the original intentions being the between spaces. Every slice and carve of the original formed space has an in uence on the actual design of the structure, and this will allow for a maximum interaction between the buildings and its adjacent exterior. This continuity in all directions is what comes out in the end, as it should. In this study, the original cube is [de]formed, manipulated from within. The interior of the cube remains the most important as evident in the next series of photos. The rst series illustrates the formation of the between space from the interior at one view, and then switches to another view to show the variation of space and its interaction with the form around it. Fig. 57 Unformed object in a eld of nothing57
Fig. 58 Series of three showing formation of space58
Fig. 59 Series of three showing building reacting to space59
Fig. 61 Final space diagram porosity in both directions Fig. 60 Formed space and buildings in x-ray to show variation60
Concept, Context and Continuity The concept for the design portion of this thesis has been determined as one of space over form. This means that the form does not completely digress from the project, but enhances the project through its contextual moves. The conceptual reasoning to design the space within does in fact create the wonderful opportunity for the city of Tampa, most notably downtown. The city of Tampa is comprised of hundreds of objects scattered in a eld known as downtown. If seen in a birdÂ’s eye view, it is obvious that each building has no relationship to the exterior space next to it, or the building opposite the exterior space. The idea of this thesis is to mend, at one instance, the terrible job done by city planning to date. What a better starting point than the edge where downtown meets the waterÂ’s edge. The site could not be better, as it presents two distinct, urban parks disconnected by an extreme elevation change. This elevation change and the fact that the site sits across from one of TampaÂ’s most historical sites lends itself to a project dealing with these two disconnection problems. There is a main feeling of disconnectedness; however, between downtown and the Hillsborough River. Ashley Boulevard has been turned into an overwhelming barrier, trapping people amongst its bustling traf c and sheer size. The 61 Fig. 62 Context Diagram extending the downtown grid to the river
qualities it has does not promote pedestrian connection across it, nor to the University for that matter. The original contextual goal of this thesis started with the extension of the downtown grid all the way to the river in the form of pedestrian boulevards, ranging in scale. The three main moves happen down Zack, Twiggs and Madison Streets. These are three of the busiest roads in downtown in terms of pedestrian and retail activity, and they all terminate at the barrier known as Ashley. This project continues these three streets past Ashley Boulevard, and to the river, thus allowing for pedestrian activity all the way to the waterÂ’s edge. The second contextual goal builds off of the rst, as the Twiggs Street extension connects the downtown grid to the river, and then across the river to the University of Tampa. This continuity stresses the conceptual reasoning the blur the boundary between downtown and its surrounding context at certain instances. Only important portions of the waterÂ’s edge should bleed across the river, and this might be the most important. As said earlier, the University represents one of TampaÂ’s nest and most important historical sites. However, this is only the main reason, as there are others. The other major reason for the continuous connection is for activation of the site. As mentioned earlier in this document, programming the project was directed towards two main groups, the everyday users of downtown and students from the university. This connection through the site and across the river will be formalized into a pedestrian bridge in an effort to enhance the progression back and forth, between downtown and UT. The project shall be programmed in 62 Fig. 63 Context Diagram establishing the connection between downtown and UT
a way to entice the activation from both of the mentioned user groups for a large portion of each day. The daytime functions will be continuously changing to react to the lunch-hour rush, as well as the steady student traf c. The night-time functions will be important, as they will determine how successful this project truly is. The ultimate goal is to keep the activity within downtown past the normal work hours of nine to ve. Though most of this activity will be tied directly to student population, the intent is to keep those within the true city center who work there during the day. The second contextual goal can be assessed when thinking about student living and parking. These two issues were dealt with shortly in the site analysis portion; however, it is these that can determine whether this site becomes what International Plaza, Channelside and Ybor City all have, and that is the commuter appeal and surrounding student population. The fact is that most students from UT commute to and from school everyday, not to mention the larger University of South Florida a few miles to the north. This site is conveniently accommodated with the existing Poe Garage faced by the new Tampa Museum of Art and Glazer ChildrenÂ’s Museum. It is this added dimension that can determine the degree of success within this site. It is this commuter population that can add or subtract to the site, but it is the reason to come to this site over all the others that becomes important. This is where the third contextual goal comes to fruition. The third goal involves circulation around the site, as well as site accommodations to attract people to the site. Creating a continuity across the site perpendicular to the 63Fig. 64 Context Diagram creating the necessary continuity across the site
aforementioned connections has the ability to connect space to space while intersecting space. This creation of cross-intersecting spaces allows for an interesting composition of spaces across the site. What it obviously lacks in regards to only bringing the grid to the river, it offers reconcile for the lost spaces. These lost spaces are the ones mid-building, along the street and along the river. It is this layering of spaces that brings the quality of activity to the site to maintain its activity throughout the entire site without creating dead zones due to isolated gathering zones. This concept blurs and intersects these gathering zones to create exciting spaces for all hours of the day. This third contextual goal is also performed to exercise relationship between spaces and buildings across the site to add to the waterfront district, a continuous river walk and secondary pedestrian avenue through the site. The existing conditions actually create a terrible condition for any river walk, as there is a 16 foot elevation change between Curtis Hixon Park and Kiley Plaza. The master plan rests at the point of elevation change to mediate the change, to make it a positive one. The exisitng Bank of America and Rivergate Tower currently use to the space below Kiley Plaza as parking and service. I have chosen to keep this intact for logical and realistic purposes, when in fact, I believe it would be better if the site maintained a steady elevation across the site. However, I have chosen to keep the elevation change, but emphasize in a positive way. It is as if the three interconnected spaces created through the master plan step down towards the new museums. The two existing urban parks have been mediated by an intermediary space taking form through the conceptual reasoning described in the [de]Forming Space conceptual design study. This space is created to take the brunt of the activity and function, and it is emphasized by the master plan and rst oor plan. The master plan began with a mass, not an arbitrary one, but one that started with a n initially designed shape due to contextual forces. These contextual forces are different than the contextual goals described earlier. The forces taken into account are the new Museums, Hillsborough River, University of Tampa and Rivergate Tower of ce complex. It is these forces that are not simply stagnant on the site 64
waiting to be addressed through connective measures. They are forces that actively determined the shape that the initial mass had to be to successfully site amongst all of them. Though they are all important, the three most important, in order are: 1) the Hillsborough River, 2) the University of Tampa, and 3) the Curtis Hixon Park face/new museums. The reason they are in this order is due to the contextual goals illustrated through the diagrams prior. The Hillsborough River takes the number one spot due to its tremendous ability to attract people and create space. The river is large enough to act as a true boundary between downtown and the surrounding suburban areas. Looking at the master plan, Ashley Boulevard obviously acts as a major barrier between the site and the river, thus creating an 65 Fig. 65 Master plan
[inter]positioned quality within the site. This site must act as a transitional space between downtown, the Hillsborough River and beyond. The major problem resides in the lack of connectivity between downtown and the river, thus the conceptual reason to extend the downtown grid to the river through pedestrian corridors. Though the major force is the river, the main face of the project faces downtown, then extends back to the river through a wonderful spatial experience. Then, the idea that this form must sit rmly within downtown, but sit lightly against the river became important as well. The second most important force is, sitting across the river, the University of Tampa. Although it is not physically a part of downtown Tampa, it appears to be a part due to its appearance of verticality, as well as its history. When looking at UT from downtown, across the river, its majestic quality is enough to awe. The magni cent material palette and form is as close to iconic as there is is this region. Looking down Twiggs Street while contained within the high-rise buildings, the tallest spires are framed within a view that I knew must be maintained. Therefore, placing the main formed, between space as an extension of Twiggs seemed almost necessary, as the form could now take a vertical 3-dimensional space to frame the view even more. This became almost as important as the rst force, as I knew the view-shed was one of the most important to 66 Fig. 66 Space along river beneath overhang sitting lightly Fig. 67 Corner at Twiggs extension sitting rmly
the people within downtown. The third force is more of a site contained issue as it deals with the relationship of the building to the park space. It is this force that determines how the site works with the built structure successfully. With this project starting with the inside space and working outward, it seems relevant to face the park spaces with the most transparent face. This project can be thought of as an inside-out project, thinking that designing the inside rst would force activation to the inside, only to then direct it the the exterior. Going back to the original case studies, this force also deals directly with the idea of porosity and boundary. Closer to the river, the project sits lighter on the site, thus opening the space up to ow and interconnect with the other spaces. It also deals with the connective pedestrian boulevard working its way through the site, parallel to the street and river. This also marks the continuation of the concept of inside versus outside. How can this concept be taken to the next level? How does the idea of inside-out work when talking about material and systems? The answer will be discussed later in the section titled Â“systems integrationÂ”. 67 Fig. 68 Twiggs Street extension Fig. 69 Pedestrian connection from afar
The Inside of the Cut and Program The conceptual design study, [de]Forming Space, begins with the de nition of the connective space between buildings. Using this method to determine the quality of space signi cantly enhances the spaces relationship to the building, and vice versa. The intertwining of space and form simultaneously allows for the greatest exibility between the boundaries. The threshold between exterior and interior is successfully blurred in order to maintain that inside-out approach. What happens after the initial concept is followed through should be one of activating 68 Fig. 70 First oor plan
the inside of the cut. It is important that this space re ect the quality needed to sustain integral human activity on a daily and nightly basis. This is where the programming of the actual space becomes extremely important, and designing the space to accommodate for realistic, leasable, interior space. The rst oor plan will illustrate graphically the chosen method for dividing the interior space and its relationship with the space. Programmatic function contained within the designed space will serve many purposes, ranging from short-term to long-term activity and daytime to nighttime. It is 24 hour activity that is the goal, although unrealistic, it is a place to begin, to satisfy as much of the day as possible. Programs also range in scale and type, from University services to major restaurants/bars. Below will be a list of proposed functions and reasons behind them: 1) History Center of Florida and Tampa Bay This function was determined at the very beginning of the process, as it had to deal directly with the initial concept for the site. Using the site as a transitional space between downtown and the surrounding context, this site needed to have the new history center on it. Though it is being built currently on another site in Tampa, the actual site offers nothing positive for the history center, and vice versa. The site proposed in this thesis project; however, does promote itself as being extremely bene cial for the history center as a programmatic element. For one, across the river is the University of Tampa, thus creating the opportunity for some kind of dual role between the two. Because a pedestrian bridge is proposed through the design, the added element of direct continuity is also present. Secondly, there are two new museums going up directly across Curtis Hixon park, and the addition of the history center could create a dynamic, civic complex on this site. 2) History Center Cafe The idea is that this cafe is part of the history center, but separate in that you have to leave the history center, and walk back out into the designed space to get there. This allows for people to inhabit the space one more time. Placing this cafe in the spot proposed creates a nice juxtaposition between itself and 69
the other functions within the space. There is also the fact that there are wonderful views out to Curtis Hixon Park and the Hillsborough River. Though on the rst oor the cafe and the center are separate, a volume space connects the two from oors two and up, creating the interaction of one being intertwined into the other. 3) Tampa Bay Information Hall This function serves the public as a guide to Tampa Bay. Those who are not totally familiar with what events and places there are in the area can come here, which is right in the center of the space, to speak to someone working for the history center. There is also a kiosk to sell tickets and make reservations for anything in the Tampa Bay area and beyond, for instance Orlando and Sarasota. This can also be a place for groups, etc. to pin-up important information about themselves to market and gain exposure. 4) Small retail/commercial It is these smaller programmatic functions such as the coffee shop, the bakery/deli and the candy store that can make up for the in-between time. These do not make this spot a destination as to attract people and get people into the site, but they make the destination possible at obscure and odd times of the day. These smaller functions should also serve as important and effective in bringing over and keeping students from UT within the space, as that activity should provoke more activity. 70 Fig. 71 Within space looking towards Twiggs Street
5) Major restaurants/bars This category falls into the secondary destination category. This means that it is these restaurants along with one main function to provide for most of the activity in any given day, at any given time. These major functions could be the sole reason for one or many coming to the site. The major time would most likely be the dinner hours, however, lunch hour during the normal workday will also be a very active time. Also, these assessments do not take into account the student population living close-by, or commuted in for class. With the existing Poe Garage taking the most of the commuter parking, a nice walk down the pedestrian boulevard is all standing between the garage and the main space. At night, the concept of the project shall be enhanced by the lighting techniques as well. The lighting will create those two distinct zones discussed earlier, inside the cut and outside. The major restaurants will also have some of the best views of downtown, the Hillsborough River as well as the University of Tampa. They will also be contained at the deepest part of the space, and at the point where the two main paths cross, in order to pull people as far into the site as possible. This will cause them to walk by the entrance to the history center, as well as all of the other, smaller functions. Nestled into the site, and surrounded by various other functions will accommodate many types of gathering spaces, from wide-open courtyards to more intimate nooks. 6) Dave and BusterÂ’s This is the single most important function taking residence within the main space. Along with the smaller functions and major restaurants/bars, this site could turn into one of the most intriguing spots in all of the Tampa Bay area. With rivals such 71 Fig. 72 Dave and BusterÂ’s signature logo courtesy of Dave and BusterÂ’s
as Centro Ybor, Cahnnelside and International Plaza, this site has a lot to do to take some re away from those places. What those sites do have is activity creating programs such as Gameworks and Splitsville, but what they donÂ’t have is location. The location advantage is provided by the neighboring student population and downtown work environment. Without even having to leave downtown after work, as people used to have to do, there is a happening spot on an incredible site right one the river. For instance, Channelside is close to downtown, and is on the river, but it does not successfully engage the river to promote gathering next to it. This site open up to the river to promote that type of gathering. Dave and BusterÂ’s, with the entrance at the connection of the main space and the river walk, will be the most activated space within downtown Tampa. The nightlife will be greatly enhanced in downtown with the inclusion of something like Dave and BusterÂ’s, not on the cusp of downtown, but right in the heart of the central business district. With all these functions, the only thing left is to provide for an easily inhabitable space, one that provides plenty of seating, shade and space. Scale is also very important, designing for the actual human, and not a fantasy land. Taking into account what is comfortable to people, and creating a variation of that, to create an experience is what the goal is. It is creating that experience not to be forgotten that is the goal of any architect. The goal of this space was to contain people, and then to let people ux in and out of the spaces to create that experience. These spaces are all designed carefully to blend together into one composition. This composition reacts to the contextual forces, and acts as that conceptual transition space. The conceptual transition happens through landscape elements and the continuous quality of the system to be discussed later. Landscape in this instance has an overwhelming effect on the exterior and interior portion of the space directly next to or within it. Large bamboo and palms create a sense of Â“placeÂ” while still offering some shade. The most shade comes from the large overhang at the end of the space as it bleeds into the park space next to it. As the space carves into the interior of the building, shaded areas become present, 72
and are large enough to allow for numerous people. As space carves into the buildings, landscape elements follow suit, and go into it as well. The use of the wall system, and how it pulls away from the oor plates creates spots for the landscape to go up through it and create that vertical feeling that the space needs. Different species of bamboo also expose the different scales of the space, creating gathering areas. These plant materials work with other elements, including water. Water is a major player as it seems as if the river wants to pull into the site to let people know what is beyond. As water elements create that awareness, they also create a sense of psychological cooling. Moving water has a sound and a psychological feeling attached to it that most people nd themselves attracted to it. Interactive elements allow for children to play in while mom nishes her latte, or dad gets them ice cream. The effect that water has is enormous, and that is why it has worked its way into a primary role. One thing that the water also does is re ect in it the space, creating the awareness of where the individual is. 73 Fig. 73 Water drop courtesy of Pinellas County Storm water
Systems Integration As this thesis continues, the concept will develop further to enhance the original conceptual design. As the original mass is cut and formed, two distinct circumstances were created, the inside where the cut was made and the outside of the mass. What also became evident was the need for a third circumstance, one that could enhance the other two and marry them as one. This project wants to address many factors and contextual forces from the surrounding area. This project has been termed one of being inside-out When thinking of something that is inside out, the rst thing that came to mind was levels of transparency. Levels of transparency, mixed with a notion of systems and how they are integrated into the conceptual thinking, is where this chapter begins to unfold. Now, the term Â“systemsÂ” are referring to the material and construction techniques utilized. The difference between the inside and the outside will come to a full fruition in this segment titled Â“Systems IntegrationÂ”. As if you were cutting into a piece of watermelon, or any other fruit, there is an obvious quality visualized between the interior and protective exterior. As this becomes the identifying quality of a built structure, the materials should express a sense of Â“placeÂ” and space. These systems must relate to each other, but more importantly, they must sit within the overall context as part of it. This thesis wants to have that certain quality, and following, qualities of the different systems will be discussed. 74 Fig. 74 Watermelon introduction to systems integration
75Fig. 75 Exploded axonometric of all systems
Inside of the cut _Concrete extremely exible and moldable by nature of modern construction techniques form of Â“betweenÂ” space created by concrete shell that does not necessarily enclose the building vertical openings and vertical striations imply the continuity of the volume as a containing space interior volumes protrude through and oor plates pull away from concrete shell to express continuous spatial relationships between the interior/exterior at corners, where systems meet, concrete stops short to allow outside system to take precedence formed in vertical 4Â’x8Â’ sections with piece of perforated screen in form work to transfer pattern/texture system will work differently depending on orientation: 1) southern exposure systemÂ’s primary role is to shade the building, building hesitates to touch the system to eliminate heat sink capacity, bamboo rises through voids to screen building in spots The concrete shell is the enclosing system when discussing the space designed through the conceptual phase. It does not enclose the building, but acts as a threshold for the building. Passing through it conceptually allows the inhabitant to look further outward, and the inside-out concept is realized. Keeping the building as open as possible, especially at the entrance, allows for the levels of transparency to the exterior. Once one enters the history center, there 76 Fig. 76 Concrete protrusion into space
is a clear view shed to Curtis Hixon Park through the lobby and museum store. Moving further towards the opposite side of the building, the volume of space increases to allow for a full view of ground to sky through the perforated screen. The inside-out concept also works well in reverse as spaces are created between the enclosed structure and the concrete shell. In these instances, the concrete shell does not act as a threshold, but a boundary between spaces, interior to exterior, as well as exterior to exterior. A perfect example will be illustrated graphically later on in the document, but the ideal condition will be described with text in this portion of the document. As oor plates pull away from the concrete shell, space is created in that between area. Cantilevered portions of the oor plates will then extend back towards the shell to allow for people to experience the shell from the other side This condition will not be programmed space, but will have important program functions directly adjacent to them on the interior. This will cause people to use the space differently, either as a space to simply go into to converse, or as a space to continue the function to the outside. The important thing to note is that there will always be that degree of personal relationship through barriers, and making the vertical openings at a three foot width allows people to poke through to gaze into the space where they just came from. The condition of the oor plates pulling away from the building also creates opportunity for large, volume spaces to be experienced from the ground level. In these cases, a larger species of bamboo will rise from the ground, through the void created, and act as a partial screen for the building on the southern side. This partial shading is dynamic in that as the bamboo moves and sways, the shadow cast into the space will also change. Imagine yourself standing at the 77 Fig. 77 Vertical openings and bamboo as screen
bottom of the void, looking up at the bamboo, as well as through the bamboo, and into the building. It is one of the more carefully designed conditions of this project, as it uses many different architectural elements to create a distinct condition. The use of a natural landscape as a screen element is also important as it is something that should be considered living in a place with a climate like FloridaÂ’s. Outside of the mass_Perforated Metal outwardly focused project implies transparency on the outside of the initial cut galvanized panels perforated for vision and maximum light through 4Â’x8Â’ panels arranged horizontally to express movement between downtown and river screen pulls away from building to create openings and focus views dualistic relationship with inside system at corners where they meet as reversal of texture and pattern is realized as a similar material used differently, screen creates a dialog between itself and the new Tampa Museum of Art across Curtis Hixon Park acts as a rain screen and attaches to the same steel structure for the entire building and the glass behind system also works differently depending on exposure: 1) northern exposure perforations are larger to allow for maximum light and view, screen closer to building to allow for maximum transparency 2) southern exposure perforations much smaller to 78Fig. 78 Screen pulls away from building
control light, screen pulled away from and higher than building simply for shading purposes The screen on the outside of the mass is a dynamic element to blur the boundary between interior and exterior. As the system pulls away from the building, space is created, exposing the structure to be realized by the public. Exposing the steel in this project was for the purpose of creating the duality between the whole composition and all of the parts that make up that composition. The secondary steel structure folds out to catch the perforated screen, and attaches to the main steel structure to support the rest of the building. It is the sum of all the parts that make up this outside system. As one notices one individual piece, the rest is easily determined. One could also see the de-constructivist quality of the steel as it becomes less and less as one moves further to the outside of the mass. This notion that the interior and exterior fold and blend into each other is the major idea in this de-constructed thesis project. The oor plate system, as a part of the outside system, is the major space creator of the overall mass. The oor plates move throughout the building in an irregular, but appropriate fashion, pulling away and pushing through the boundaries to blur them. It is this blurring that connects the disconnected spaces, thus enhancing the original concept. Beginning with the contextual disconnects, the concept derives itself into a ner version of the original. The moves made at the beginning to establish the connections parallel and perpendicular to the river allow for the overall project to be realized as one of continuity. Moving towards the river from downtown, the building tends to lift off of the ground, creating a space underneath the overhang of the building. The building eventually 79Fig. 79 Screen on outside of initial cut
cantilevers over the river, as the steel columns stop at the river. This allows people to be within the enclosure of the building, or underneath the building, to experience the river in a different way. When inside the building, over the river, there is a consciousness to where one is. The views in that spot are the best from the project, as one can look down the river to the mouth of it, as well as right to the famous Old Tampa Bay Hotel. There is also another obstructed view the opposite way towards the Old Cass Street Bridge and new Tampa Museum of Art. At the corners of the building, this system is the more hierarchal system in that it extends past the building to shade and create space. The concrete system stops short to express this; however, they do come close enough to expose the reverse textural relationship between the two. The corners of the building are where the two systems come close to interacting, as they typically do not. These spots are where the oor plates do the most at creating space between themselves and the systems. They step back to create large volume spaces with incredible views, with each oor plate getting different views due to where they stop. The corners also blend together interior and exterior spaces, as they fold into each other. On the downtown side, the exterior space cuts into the interior without the screen feeling the effects. The screen continues as of nothing has changed, but enclose an exterior space as it is interior. The corner also acts as the entrance to the site. The ends of the building cantilever to express the space underneath, and to pull people off of the street, into the site. The main corners just happen to be on the main space, where all entrances to the buildings reside. The corners highlight the edges and focus the attention to the interior of the site. From there, the progression outwards begins to take place, as the concept proposes. 80Fig. 80 Diaphragm wall pushes through screen
Diaphragm_Orange acrylic acts as a mediator between the other two main systems dynamic in function, conceptually and structurally 1) conceptual acts hierarchically to signify main entry points from the exterior, expresses main vertical volumes on the interior of the building, 2) structural takes the place of column grid as main steel beams tie into it, oor plates lock into it on each level concrete subtly touches this system, allowing it to easily pass through has a more dynamic relationship with the screen as it forces its way through, pushing the screen out and away from the building This system is the most dynamic in its relationship with the other two systems. It is the mediating system, as it is the only element that comes into contact with both. In its relationships, there is nothing more important than the way it enforces the interaction between the interior and exterior. The extension of the orange wall beyond the boundaries of the systems, into the spaces created expresses its importance to the project. 81 Fig. 81 Diaphragm wall nished with orange acrylic Fig. 82 Main structural beams lock into diaphragm wall
Not only does the diaphragm protrude beyond the systems, but it sticks up higher than the entire building. When inside the building, or within the created spaces, the hierarchal element that one can identify with is the orange acrylic wall. The bold color alone, not to mention the spaces designed adjacent to it, is enough to get oneÂ’s attention and keep it. This system is the identi er of the complex. Humans are always searching for that one key ingredient to identify with, and this is it. A project similar to this could stand without this system; however, this singular and holistic thesis project cannot stand without. This element is the key part to the entire composition. This system of walls denotes space, important space. The main entrance to the history center, as well as other major entrances within the designed space. It also has the same effect on the interior of the building as it acts as a way nding piece within the enclosure. Using this as a piece to signify main volume spaces, it also points the way to the main gathering spaces within the site, interior and exterior. Interaction of systems The diaphragm system, as discussed earlier interacts with the two main systems differently. The diaphragm wall is the only element 82 Fig. 83 All systems 1 highlighting diaphragm
to come into contact with both of the other systems. At the points of interaction, certain things happen to express this interaction. They are different depending on the system, as well as the location at which these interactions happen. They also stick to a strict set of rules and guidelines which were held for the duration of the design. On the inside of the cut, the concrete shell acts as a simple barrier to pass through. Designing tall, vertical voids into the shell, they have a tendency to fold into the carved space when need be. These vertical openings also allow the diaphragm wall to easily pass through with minimal effort. Looking at the picture above, it is plain to see that the concrete shell has a minimal effect on the diaphragm wall as it passes by of through. In one case, the concrete shell is cut away, and the diaphragm wall cuts around it. In another case, a narrow void is used for the wall to pass through, and the concrete shell encloses the building where the two systems touch, making that one of the only places where the concrete shell actually encloses the structure. The diaphragm wall has a much more dynamic relationship with the system on the outside of the mass. Unlike a simple passing through, there is more of an action and a reaction. In this interactive instance, the diaphragm wall seems to overpower the perforated screen as it forces its way through it. This overwhelming force causes the screen to pull away from the building in an effort to get out of the way. This relationship not only happens when a diaphragm wall pushes through, but also set up the rules for creating openings in the 83Fig. 84 All systems 2 overall from downtown
screen. The screen tends to pull away from the building at certain spots to establish views and important spaces. However, the most proli c openings in the screen do happen as a result of the diaphragm wall pushing through the building, and to the exterior. This condition poses an interesting relationship between the two systems, as it pushes through, the steel structure wants to attach itself to the wall. Steel tubes reach out to the wall, and lock into it, creating a wonderful display of structure and concept for the public to see and experience. Views of this circumstance happen within those incredible void spaces that take residence adjacent to the diaphragm wall. 84Fig. 85 All systems 3 overall from Hillsborough River
Material Studies An interesting part of this project was through the actual process of making the object. As this thesis turned into one of developing construction techniques and systems, the incorporation of actual material study details was one that enhanced the forward thinking of thesis project within the conceptual phase of design. As I began to think of how to involve this process into the thesis, I determined that dropping the production scale of my study materials to one-quarter of actual size helped in the decision making. As stated earlier, both major systems were to be actually constructed of smaller parts to the whole. Modules of 4Â’x8Â’ panels were to be assembled/poured depending on system, and that helped me determine the size of the constructed details. The decision turned out to consist of one concrete pour at 2Â”x24Â”x4Â” thick, and one scaled perforated screen panel with cross-bracing and connections, at 12Â”x24Â” as well. These two will be further discussed in this section. The concrete pour was the rst detail to be constructed. As is with any concrete pour, the most important step is obviously the form work in which it is to sit and cure. The use of concrete, as mentioned conceptually, was used on the inside of the formed space due to its moldability and exibility. This exibility is all a result of the form work being constructed of anything, allowing for the most dynamic and uid shapes possible. The form work in this case is 85 Fig. 86 Concrete form work before the pour
simply a plywood enclosure, packed with rebar, and held together with form-ties. The use of a particular nish on the interior of form work determines the nish on the concrete, unless nished with something else, after the pour has dried and cured. I appreciate the nish material as one representing the method in which it was produced; therefore, there is nothing nicer than a concrete pour taking on the subtle wood grain nish from the plywood. In the case of this thesis, the concrete pour must take on two different nishes to account for the conceptual thinking of creating the textural relationship between the two systems at the corners. As this concrete pour will be experienced from both sides of the pour, one side will take the natural wood grain nish from the plywood, while the nish on the inside of the formed space will be a reversal texture of the perforated screen, thus a repetitive dimple. Another thing to take into consideration is the transition from pour to pour. In the case if this thesis, the separate pours will be emphasized vertically, to assist in the creation of the vertical striations in the nal concrete product. As one pour dries and cures, another pour is usually started, using one of the sides of the already poured piece as part of the form 86Fig. 87 Concrete sitting in the form work after our has cured Fig. 88 Concrete showing reverse texture of screen
work. Rebar is continuous, and it connects different pours of concrete. The rebar and form ties are further expressed in my concrete pour as they stick out of the nished pour to show what they are there for. The technique for pouring concrete has been the same for as long as modern architecture, and progressive ways of thinking, have been around. Even the most dynamic of concrete projects still utilize the same construction techniques from the beginning of time. The only advancement has been one of dealing with mass production. The concept of pre-manufacturing concrete, which is poured off site, shipped to the site, and then constructed in a Â“tilt-upÂ” fashion. This project utilizes what is known as site cast, post-tensioned concrete. Post-tensioning allows for exibility to further optimize the material use by creating thinner, longer concrete members. This type of pouring/stressing is what gives concrete that dynamic quality and capability. Unlike pre-stressing the concrete, which is done during the pre-fabricating process, post-tensioning starts and ends at the job site. The pre-fabricating process is one that ultimately limits the exibility of concrete, allowing for only a certain size of each panel, etc. 87 Fig. 89 Concrete showing the different pours Fig. 90 Screen pulls away and creates the texture
The next construction detail is of the perforated screen to be located on the outside of the mass formed from within. This scaled construction is meant to represent a 4Â’x8Â’ horizontal panel, with cross-bracing and connections for other panels. As seen in the image below, an angled piece of steel shall be used to act as the structure for each panel. The screen will be assembled with a separate piece of perforated sheet that is galvanized to reduce the effect on the environment. Galvanized metal is already weathered in a sense, that it will not further weather due to its initial processing. As the building does hang over the river, a material is needed that does not weather enough to produce anything harmful to be dripped into the water. For instance, corten steel was originally thought to be used especially for its weathering capabilities; however, it was then realized that the effect of the rust dripping into the river during a rain would not be good at all. The switch to a galvanized panel was a good choice from that standpoint, but also from a nal product visual standpoint as well. The green hue given off of the galvanized metal is only enhanced being next to an open park space, with the green grass re ecting color off the building. 88 Fig. 91 Materials used to construct screen Fig. 92 The smaller parts of the assembled screen
The beginning of this process must deal with the steel work. Cutting the steel to size and manufacturing the pieces deals with heavy-duty machinery and work-load. The process to get the steel to the size needed, as well as to construct the frame for the panel, cutting through steel and welding it together at the corners is what holds this together. Shown in the image is the process used by myself to construct a smaller scale steel detail. Using a grinder, and with the steel held in place by large vise grips, it was necessary to get a precise cut through the steel. Aside from the major parts of the perforated panel, the little parts that actually make this thing work are the connective pieces, as assembly pieces, as well as connecting pieces to other panels. In the image below, the assembled, tectonic panel shows its connectivity through the eye bolts and extension of the bolts holding the screen sheet to the steel angle. The cross-bracing single-handedly secures the construction of this piece, as it holds the panel together. The steel cable is used in tension to hold the steel in place, in relationship to the perforated sheet of metal. The pieces are all held together, not xed, 89Fig. 93 Process to construct begins with steel work Fig. 94 Bolts connect panel to panel and sheet the angle
Fig. 95 The cross-bracing keeps the panel together90 but pinned together to allow for movement within each panel. Each panel must move separately to account for the windy conditions coming off of the water, as well as to stand up during the common hurricane/tropical storm coming through the area. These types of constructions must be able to stand up according to NOA codes, ones dealing with wind velocity and pressure. The air gap between the building and the screen helps, but the ability for each panel to move and twist a little by itself is the key.
Natural, Arti cial and Architecture The quality of architecture depends on its integration with the context and/or environment in which it sits. The site will always be as important as the building itself, and maybe even more important. The site ultimately determines how the building will react to it. In the case of this thesis, the site has more of an impact than a normal design sitting as an object on a eld. The use of landscape as an architectural element becomes key in the integration of site and context into the building. The natural landscape and the arti cial environment become very entangled in this project as the concept develops. Forming the space next to and between the buildings allows for that space to be not only one of interiority, but the intertwining of interior and exterior. Exterior factors interact with the interior as much as possible, and it is clear throughout this section that it is actually vital to the success of this project. Spatial ideas, and how they are Fig. 96 Bamboo forest courtesy of Wikipedia91
integrated into the natural landscape in which the building sits, are truly where this project began. The original concept to form the space between the buildings came with the baggage of dealing directly with exterior and its relationship to the left over space a lotted as enclosed building. As the space is folded and carved into the enclosure, voids and niches becomes exposed with the possibility of really integrating the natural and arti cial. One case of this is using large, vertical voids to lled with large species bamboo. This has a dual function, one to stick with the original concept throughout, but more importantly, to use a natural element to express an arti cial quality of the building. The verticality of the space, and interaction between the inside of the building and the void, is truly enhanced through the use of such an incredible plant species. As seen in the image above, a natural bamboo forest is one of creating space and light conditions. The feeling of standing next to these giants as they shoot up through the building would be a sight to see from any level. Bamboo, as a natural element, is a great plant material to use. It is a truly hearty plant able to withstand extremely harsh environments. As they are a tropical plant, they are great to use in a Florida setting like this one, along the Hillsborough River. Coupled with numerous species of palms, bamboo clumped together in patches creates nodes within and around it. I know that children would love to run in and out of the larger stocks of bamboo, as they are spread along a larger area. This connection between natural and arti cial can also be described deeper than just the bamboo rising up through the voids created by the oor plates and concrete system pulling away from each other. The notion that arti cial bamboo can also be used as a dualistic mediator between that and the structural layout. Art cial bamboo allows for that third dimension between the relationships created. The idea to have the three concepts in one area creates an intriguing relationship when speaking of natural and arti cial. The last dimension os that of the structure. As the building approaches the river, it wants to lift off of the ground to allow for the park space and main between space to blend into each other. This blending is also one of the relationship being discussed in this section. 92
As the natural landscape of the park bleeds into the space, the structural logic also breaks down to also recognize that fact. As the building pulls off of the ground, the structural grid turns into one of a disorganized, natural arrangement, almost resembling that of a bamboo eld. Now, the logic is realized where the natural bamboo, the arti cial bamboo mixed in, and then the structural column layout intermix to create a different feeling when walking underneath the cantilevering portion of the building. Also, as the bamboo tends to shoot up through the entire building as a result of the vertical voids created, the structural columns also extend up to different heights and levels. Each column has its own reason, and as a result, stop at different places within the building. The bamboo as a natural element is used all around the site; however, the largest species does sit within the original designed space. As a feeling of verticality is stressed within the space with the larger species, the outside of the mass is generally littered with a smaller version of bamboo, all along the edge of the building, to stress the horizontal movement. As the bamboo moves next to the building, it sometimes pokes out into the pedestrian realm, leaving the natural planter bed, and into the path. This jog in the bamboo also causes a jog in the path, to then make the person walking realize their place within the site. Blending the natural and its effects on the arti cial does create this awareness that is so important in this thesis. 93 Fig. 97 Bamboo shooting up through void created by oor plates
94Fig. 98 Curtis Hixon park side as park blends with inside space
95 Sustainability One thing to note is that this project takes place in one of the hardest and strictest building environments. The setting in which the southern portion of the United States poses, especially Florida and the Gulf Coast, is not an easy one to build successfully in. In terms of progressive design, Florida has to be the worst place to build, whether it be the humidity, the moisture problem, or the heat. That is the only reason to mention that designing sustainable is of the utmost importance. This thesis project has chosen not to address those issues as a major factor in determining design decisions as they should be decisions made every time something is built in Florida. It is not aunted to everyone that this is a sustainable project because it should be. There is no reason for it not to be, except for maybe a little more money up front for the cost of construction and systems. Some things that this project poses as simple solutions for designing with a little bit of the environment in mind are the use of materials and systems with low embodied energies, the use of a natural rooftop and other living elements and water collection systems. What every project in Florida could do to help the environment i also a way for any developer/owner of a building to save a lot of money. Simply allowing a grass roof to act as a shade, as well as a natural cooler makes almost no sense to not do. Collecting water, storing it in a cistern, and reusing it is not hard at all. But why is it so hard to convince people to invest in them? The answer beats me, as I have no idea why someone would not want to save money. What makes even less sense to me is failure to build as if the sun was not hidden amongst the light blue sky. The most powerful, Fig. 99 Live and build with a conscious
96 and easiest source of energy in the south is by far the sun. The sun is capable of powering an entire house without the help of an ordinary energy provider. Not having an energy bill in Florida is a reachable possibility through the use of solar power. However, solar arrays are still fairly expensive with very little relief from the government for buying them. I do see this changing in the near future as it is the easiest form of energy to acquire, and then convert into electricity. In Florida, there de nitely is no shortage of that energy supply happening any time soon. Anyway, the real issue is designing buildings with absolutely no regard to the sun, and its possible extremely negative effects it can have on a building. A common sight to see when looking at typical, shoddy building in Florida is the mishap of placing exposed glazing on the southern or western side of the building, completely unprotected. Not as an aesthetic problem, but as a cooling problem, in Florida this is the absolute worst thing any one could do to their investment. Allowing the sun to hit exposed glazing is by far the most expensive problem in Florida building. To simply cool the space, you are talking about three or four times whatFig. 100 Typical solar array Fig. 101 Typical Florida sun is harsh
97 would take to if there was some kind of protection, whether it be a tacky awning or an integrated shading system. It does not matter as the only point to this is to inform that the sun is hot, and it can heat a space very quickly. The only question is if the space needs to be naturally heated, for instance up north. Even during the winter months here, the sun is so powerful that a space directly hit by the sun is still too hot, and with most buildings cooled automatically in Florida, what a waste it would be to pay for the cooling of a space during the winter? This thesis uses the different systems to shade and naturally cool the building. Depending if it is the concrete system or the perforated metal, they are adjusted based on orientation to maximize their effect on the interior, conditioned space.
The Section Model The section model built for the nal thesis presentation was an encompassing end to a successful project. This single model contained all of the information necessary to describe the project through. As with any project, it should be able to sell itself, and I believe that this model told the story of my thesis perfectly. Assisted by the graphic and oral presentation which I will also include pictures of, this thesis was one of many learning experiences. As the pen touched the paper for the rst time this idea was conceived, there was never a feeling that this project has a distinct beginning and end. 98 Fig. 102 Montage of overall section model
Fig. 103 Section model large volume space99
100 Fig. 104 Section model diaphragm wall pushing through
101 Fig. 106 Section model looking through in elevation Fig. 105 Section model main entry court space
102 Fig. 107 Section model space between concrete shell and building
103Fig. 108 Section model interior lobby space and main volume
104 Fig. 109 Section model Just enjoying the view!
105 Fig. 110 Section model Look at all those ridiculous perforations
106 Fig. 111 Section model exposing the structure and volume space
107 Fig. 113 Section model overall image 2 Fig. 112 Section model overall image 1
108 Process Models The very rst model came at a point where I was very sick of doing nothing but research. It was a way for me to pick the old Olfa knife after a long time of nothing but looking through books and diagramming. This model was constructed as a beginning to the concept to be developed throughout the entire thesis project. The model was made with one word in mind, between I had no clue what this word would translate into a model, but what came out was something interesting. It started with a datum object, a piece of bass wood with a chunk cut out of it. How everything reacted to this piece of wood and the chunk missing revolved around the word. Every consecutive piece built upon the last, but with the original piece of basswood in mind as the datum objective to follow. What this datum turned out to be would ultimately turn into a connective tissue between parts, or a connective space between buildings. Fig. 115 Concept model basswood and missing chunk as datum Fig. 114 The original concept model using the word Â“betweenÂ”
109 Fig. 116 Concept model every piece builds upon the last
110 The next pair of models were created after the concept had been conceived and developed to a point. These were basically study models to develop the form of the spaces and building. The original concept to form the space from within has already been established, now is when the concept is beginning to take the next step. One model deals directly with the formal quality of the architecture and spaces. The second model is further along as the systems become more integrated into the thesis project. Both were used and handy during the nal presentations. They explain in context, the purpose of the site and project. The site and context were further explained in the three-dimensional images shown earlier in this document. The third and nal model to be discussed is one that was actually made before the two contextual models. This model was created as a concept for the systems integration into the building. The idea was thought of before it ever was actually determined that it would be integral. It was initially thought of as a study model for the systems, but turned into a nice piece to build from. This model was made while thinking about Fig. 117 Formal model showing between space Fig. 118 Formal model zoomed out to show entire site
111Fig. 119 Systems model beneath overhang Fig. 120 Systems model looking at formed space Fig. 121 Systems model overall image 1 how well different systems could be weaved and blended into each other. This model was crafted of three different systems materials. One was called the interior vein that became the what a person could identify with. The other two were con icting systems that wanted to work together, simultaneously. These two systems consisted of one that shaded and formed space on the outside of the building. The spaces formed on the outside were to be extensions of the interior, but could also be extensions of the exterior into the interior. This duality was mediated by a third system that accepted the second systems force, and reacted to it. The active and reactive systems played off of each other, but worked differently.
112Fig. 122 Conceptual systems model interaction Fig. 123 Conceptual systems model structure and space
113 Fig. 124 Conceptual systems model systems integration
The Final Presentation and Conclusions The nal presentation posed many new and intriguing questions for the continuation of this thesis project. Continuing on, upon graduating from the USF School of Architecture and Community Design, ideas from this thesis process will stick with me throughout my entire career as an architect. Ideas must always be changing and adjusting to the times. If not this singular project, the concept was one that I enjoyed designing through. I would love to have the ability within the professional eld, to be able to continue this process of design/research. As for conclusions to the project completed for this nal defense presentation, I will take some time to work through the comments that were afforded to me during the defense of the project. There are obviously things 114 Fig. 125 Final systems graphics and material studies Fig. 126 Final graphics and models laid out
115 Fig. 127 The nal presentation set up and ready to roll.....that would change if I had to do it all over again, as well as things that I want to change according to the comments. I believe the designed, between space was a huge success in all facets of the design, ranging from execution of the form, programming the adjacent interior functions, as well as interaction between interior and exterior. I also believe that the design worked in regards to the words used to describe the intent of the project overall. The project ourished within the concept to design the between space, allowing for a feeling of interiority within the site and enclosure. If I could do one thing differently based on comments, I would have designed the approach to the Hillsorough River through the Twiggs Street extension. As it ended up through the design, it was necessary to step up 9Â’ into the space, then nally giving the view out to the river and University of Tampa. Even though the view shed was successful from a distance, down Twiggs, once right up on the space, it became lost due to the height of the nished oor height.
116 On a nal note, this project was a great success in that it continued to teach the aspects of architecture. As a culminating project, it ended with a great presentation with a lot of uid discussion. Architecture is a different animal. There is more to it than reading out of a book, knowing all the codes, designing successfully. People skills is what an architecture student truly learns while studying for the profession. It is the series of presentations to a large jury or panel of people that teach a student of architecture to succeed in the eld. Client skills, to me, are the single most important aspect to the practice of architecture. It is not only selling a design to someone who knows nothing, but a way of communicating with that person to reach the desired end of a built structure. Whether it is a modern, custom home, a progressive museum, or any typical retail center, it is that communication with the client that ultimately determines how and why anything goes down. Coming into architecture as a rst year student, I was not the best public speaker, in fact, I was terrible. Coming out, I feel that I have come a very long way. Con dence is key, and that is what architecture is all about; preparing and teaching con dence.
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