Roller Coaster Inhabits the City

Following up from the tutorial on Tuesday I wanted to develop the roller coaster  relationship between Coney Island and Manhattan.

I thought about the route it may take and the connectivity.  However, given that the distance in real terms is some 20 miles, the scale has been proving difficult to represent.


This was my first group of aerial images, but to show the route and relationship with threads similar to the subway route model I did previously won’t have the impact it needs.  However, it may be good to use for a master plan/overview of future development of the roller coaster being fed back into Manhattan.  This could be developed with ink/trace drawings, photo imagery.


I then thought perhaps to focus on Coney Island/Brooklyn route and relationship.  Again this scale seems too big to show the intent to the viewer.


I then decided to just extract some aerial views of Manhattan the transition and Coney Island.  This works better, but it doesn’t have the wider context with which to place the areas, although this could be complimented with an inset for location.  This is by no means finished, it was just a trial to see what will work.









The images are not particularly clear and so I wasn’t sure whether it would be better to ink/trace the detail to get better contrast, or to give them context as an underlay.


As the previous trials didn’t seem successful, or achieve what I had hoped, I thought I would look at a sectional relationship.

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This long section seemed to work better in showing the relationship from Coney Island through Brooklyn onto Manhaattan.  It shows the varying scale in terms of levels and perspectives given weaving through the boroughs.  The overall length of this section is A1, but the height is  not even 100mm, but its form is similar to that of the film strips embedded in my Coney Island drawing.

I want to develop or improve a plan showing the relationship of the roller coaster through the city, but I think that in terms of representation and scale I need to focus on Coney Island itself in order to produce a plan at a scale which can show the intent  clearly and how  this can then be developed.

I would like to have a plan which evolves like a parti diagram, albeit with a physical element/collage.  This will show the roller coaster in its entirety with the architectural process integrated into the overall design.

I was thinking that the 3d views, sections and views I presented of Manhattan will need to be produced for Coney Island and they will become the underlays to develop with texture and materiality.

Coney Island has many vacant plots ready for development but also areas with varying scale.  It is ready for innovation.  As discussed on Tuesday I see the roller coaster route evolving around the existing vacant plots and having new branches and links to new/future plots.

The  redundant links of the roller coaster already forming part of the built environment could be reused.   Promotion of self build projects utilising the structural systems as a framework for a development , or sustainable practices like food growth or solar collection would all be viable.  Where not viable, they could be utilised as a recreational backdrop, either way they would not be redundant or insignificant, just as the Parachute Jump and The Cyclone both still have a presence on Coney Island, so too would the redundant roller coaster links.   This is something I will look into more when I have resolved the spatial diagram relating to the phases of the route,  as these will have a bearing on the primary structure and therfore, the lifecycle or reincarnation after decommission.








4 thoughts on “Roller Coaster Inhabits the City

  1. I think the sections start to be pretty effective! It is nice to get a sense of the tracks wrapping around the buildings and the depths of their ascents and drops. But maybe think more about the back image you use. The image quality of the current view seems a bit low, and the black sky plus lit buildings looks a bit outer space-y!

    Regarding the question of showing the route, what is the route or how are you defining it? Is it determined by points of access? Views of certain development sites or certain overviews of the city? The drawings or collages that you make of the views from the rollercoaster could be used to frame the choice of route. As for the overall, maybe this would be best achieved through a diagram, such as the subway map, but the stations marked become the job stages, notable views, opportunities for testing and assembly. Through the three elements – the section showing height and relation to buildings, the views highlighting reasons for the route selection, and the diagrammatic map showing the overall route, we would receive all of the information that you are aiming for.

    Really interesting to be thinking about the future of the links that will become redundant, as this suggests how your rollercoaster will reveal a story about changing focuses of development in Manhattan. Maybe the cycle of development will bring obscelete stretches back into use in the future. Later in the project do we see your rollercoaster in a future state where food growth has been pushed off to access a view of a site to be redeveloped?

    For Tuesday work on the three ways of showing the route and also an element of its construction for the conversation with the structural engineer, on Tuesday we discussed that this might in part mean looking at how the rollercoaster meets the ground. Looking forward to seeing the developments on Tuesday!

  2. Ok, So I don’t know how helpful this will be, but it continues on from what I was talking about in the tutorial- this idea of ‘Tomorrowland’.
    The idea and the film both come from Disney, apparently he was all about innovation and trying new technologies which created this Tomorrowland idea- similar to that of The World Fair
    Here’s a short video about this concept- there’s even an ‘Innoventions’ area of the park that allows people to imagine and invent ideas

    Also Disney’s monorail at the resort in California was an engineering landmark in the US and reminded me of your rollercoaster through the city. The monorail goes for 2 1/2 miles and is a sort of connection between reality (the highway that runs parallel to the park itself) The monorail brings people across these 2 destinations and allows them to explore the park from an alternate viewpoint- which relates to what was said about seeing Coney Island/ manhattan from the rollercoaster (& vice versa) Here’s a video of the monorail in action.

    I know its a fantasy ideology, but see connections between these ideas and what you’re trying to install on the site in Coney Island

    Here’s also a link to the site of the 1964 Wolrd’s Fair in NYC, but it’s about whats on the site today and the significance of what the site tells us about the history of NYC – it’s actually quite sad how the area has degraded so much and there is hardly any trace of the fair itself. What does this tell us about technologies and innovations that don’t work or never make it out of prototype stage? Could the coney island site change this in terms of the museum?

    There was also the 1939 World Fair in NY- I love the picture (8) on this website that shows the view of Flushing Meadows (where both World Fairs were) from Central Manhattan and you can see the Trylon & Perisphere landmark in the distance, from the Empire State, which relates to what we were discussing about seeing the Coney Island Museum connected with the city.

    Don’t know if any of this will help, but just some thoughts!

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