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  • The Object and Strategy of the Ground: Architectural Transformation in New York City Housing Projects

Finney, Tarsha, 2015, Journal Article, The Object and Strategy of the Ground: Architectural Transformation in New York City Housing Projects The Journal of Architecture, 20 (6). pp. 962-987. ISSN 1360-2365

Abstract or Description:

Kenneth Frampton, in a 1973 Architectural Forum review of the 1968–1973 Bronx-sited Twin Parks Housing Development in New York City, asked: ‘to what purpose do you assign the space under the pilotis? The problem posed by the pilotis [ ... ] is integral to the original model [ ... ] What would the inhabitants of the Ville Radieuse have done with these continu- ous arcades? [ ... ] This is the typological burden ... ’
The apparent banality of Frampton’s observation obscures what is revealed in the lifting up of the building on pilotis: the ground itself. Rather than follow Frampton’s use of typology as a descriptive tool in the service of a critical judgement, this paper will instead see the question of type as one involving a diagnostic and propositional gesture within the design process itself, and as part of an ongoing and critical questioning of the city. The paper will explore how the three-dimensional articulation of the ground level evident in a trajectory of projects in New York City has been a site of concentrated architectural research from the late nineteenth century through to contemporary approaches to urban intensification. Here the ground can be seen to be both an object of architectural investigation and spatial reasoning, and at the same time, to operate at a strategic intersection with the spatial politics of the liberal metropolis.

Official URL: http://www.tandfonline.com
Subjects: Architecture > K100 Architecture > K110 Architectural Design Theory
School or Centre: School of Architecture
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13602365.2015.1115420
Date Deposited: 07 Nov 2018 11:43
Last Modified: 09 Nov 2018 14:32
URI: http://researchonline.rca.ac.uk/id/eprint/3689

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