All I do is modern because there isn’t anything else. Everything we do is a representation of time. Residual in the moment. Art is willful self-expression, design is defining the question. These concepts have guided my career thus far.
Second Award- Urban Design & Architecture Design Awards 2019
Firm | s2ga
Category | Mixed Use (Concept)
Team | Stuart Grunow, Patrick Vaucheret
Country | United States
The question is: How do you design a new building with a client requested program, requirements from governing bodies and requests from stakeholders with the goal of creating a human scale, contextual, modern building behind a 110 year old Victorian and adjacent to a new school gymnasium that violates the city’s own height requirements?
Having taken over this project from a previous party there was already precedent set as to how not to do it. Explorations of how to situate the building on the site had already been explored. Orientating the new structure perpendicular to the new gym and Victorian created problems with access, view corridors, and parking. We had to explore what the right answer was by system of elimination. Surprisingly, the right answer was found by aligning the new structure behind the Victorian.
The next point of attack was how to you create a contextual building under these circumstances. Pulling from residual memory. The Ocean Shore Railway which created this community would be our precedent. The Victorian would not exist without it and Victorian structures being modern in their time would serve as the engine for locomotion. Economic engine. The new structure would be the Pullman cars behind and would be the modern context for development. As an aberration the new gymnasium would be a neutral backdrop for the modern structure. Much like the addition to the Guggenheim was for Gwathmey Siegel.
Function in its most economical form dictated the remainder of the concept. The site plan concept streamlined all access, view corridor, required parking counts, fire department access to the site and neighboring sites, and shared easement agreements, thus achieving wholistic satisfaction. Through our presentations to the stakeholders we were able to educate the City Government, Planning Commission and Public on how, through our process, the final result was achieved. Eliminating any doubt with regard to alternative solutions and confirming our conclusions while enlightening them on how thoughtful, community-oriented design is achieved. Approval was unanimous. Unfortunately, economics did cooperate.