Friday, March 26, 2010

Unity Village :: An Experience

Unity Village proposes the idea of bringing people together who would normally never relate to one another under other circumstances. We are creating a living environment for every age, race, and gender. Among these people will be the elderly, students, and foreign families.

The first floor of Unity Village will be an open space that will allow all people to feel welcome and comfortable. The design concept is connections, specifically the connections that railways create, connecting old and new, past and present. The design goal of this floor is to mix styles that all ages and nationalities can relate to.

Specifically within these groups are the elderly. Paul, a 72 year old man in a wheel chair, explains his first experience through our building, "When I first came to Unity Village I was unsure if it would be a suitable place for me to live, however, my mind was quickly changed. I came to the front of the building and noticed a revolving door and two standard doors on either side, which I thought was extremely convenient. When entering I noticed a reception desk to my left where they had a lowered counter on one side. It was very nice not having to look up above a counter. The main walking space seemed to be surrounding the central elevator. To the right of the reception desk was a convenient store, it felt open and not like a cramped store at all. It was comfortable and I noticed some just sitting in there chatting. Directly outside the convenient store was a lounge with big comfortable chairs and doors to the patio that opened the space completely. Around the corner was a massively open cafe, filled with all types of people working together and doing their own thing. The smell from the cafe bar was absolutely sensational. I felt welcomed and open to the spaces and people that live there."

43 year old Roberta is a mother of two who works and lives in the building and describes her experience living in the little village, "I enjoy waking up every morning here. I know that its a safe place to raise my children and there are so many different, unique, and interesting people that live here. After sending the kids to school, I take the elevator to the first floor. I'm always engulfed by the delicious smells coming from the cafe as soon as I walk out the doors. I always stop in and have my morning quad, venti, with whip, skinny vanilla latte, with two pumps of sugar-free raspberry syrup. I'm fascinated by how many different people are always in the Unity Cafe. My office is located on the other side of this floor. I make my way around the elevators, passing by the quaint convenience store and then I get my work day started."

Ella, is Roberta's 6 year old daughter who loves to jump rope and play tea party. While sharing a scone she explains why she loves her home. "I just, I just love it here. There are so many different types of extraordinary people. They're all so friendly and love to have tea parties. One of our neighbor goes to school and she comes over and helps me with my homework a lot. I love coming down to the first floor mostest. The outside balconies are perfect for jumping rope and playing with by big bouncy ball, and when its nice outside they open the doors and its like being outside. I just absolutely love it here!"

Unity Village is open community working together to benefit from each other.

(the interviews in this blog are fake and are only meant to get an idea of the experiences people will have in my group's studio design project.)

Friday, March 19, 2010

rail [WAY] FINDING inspiration


"the directional flow of railways facilitates connections between different cultures, people, and places. the result is an eclectic mix of thoughts and ideas that appeal to multiple groups."

railways serves as a gateway between cities and towns. they link different cultures and communities every day, spreading goods and ideas from one place to the next. although there is a strong sense of direction, it is a two-way system. the linear movement provides clarity and focus, yet the users, goods, and ideas transported, as well as the stops along the route, are an eclectic mix that add interest to an otherwise mundane track. that mix of elements [past and present, old and new, local and international, classic and modern] will permeate through the first floor at gateway plaza. an interesting variety of color, texture, pattern, and style will incorporate design for all residents of the building. this variety will also serves as a wayfinding device to help residents and guests alike navigate the floor.