I think moving forward from the crit, I’m going to identify the elements of the building which can change, which can’t change etc. within a drawing/ set of drawings. Also drawing the reprogramming occurring side by side is important I think. I’ll make an inventory of possible uses (performance spaces, rehearsal spaces, bike repair shops, workshops, residences etc.) and hypothesise on how these interact with each other. This way I’ll have a list of dualities and reconfigurations, which can be used to manifest the way in which the reconfigurations are recorded in the buildings history.
I think what Igea said about the specificity of the site is very important. Shes right in that it was just the same as any other story of a city, and that the specific history and story of the site should come out. I think I have a lot of information on the site that can come into use here that maybe I haven’t fully utilized before.
With the details, I have a process of reconfiguration for the building, however, with Igea’s comments that I need to be more ambitious, maybe I need to look at relationships between other buildings on the site, the remnants of the railway tracks still evident in dumbo, other uses etc. Engage more with the site and assess the actual parameters of my site. The route down to the ferry is an important one that I need to trace I think, as well as the becoming of the area as a whole. Construction methods changed over the course of the sites development, uses changed, reasons for building changed, power was shifted from hand to hand in deciding what happened on the site.
Also, the rationale for the project needs to be defined. I’m taking these different time periods and studying the relationships, but how does this benefit people. How does it affect the public, does it affect them? I want to see it as an alternative perspective on the life of a building. The building would wear on its sleeve the marks of time instead of trying to stay true to an original vision, wherein needs and future uses may be neglected or misrepresented. The venice charter talks about alterations being distinguished from the original design, which is interesting because some architects still regard the original architect’s mark to be the one true configuration of material for that particular site (as seen in a book about retrofit, the author remarked on the terrible new additions which betrayed the original design intent), which is absurd. Looking at ‘how buildings learn’ by Stewart Brand, its obvious that needs dictate alterations, as the alteration of the house. He makes the case that in new orleans, wooden balconies werent suitable for the climate on british style townhouses, so they were replaced with cast iron balconies which became a characteristic of the area. We could say the same for New York. Most structures in NY had metal fire escapes added after the fact, and this became an iconic characteristic of NY.
But I need to spend some time narrowing down why its useful, and consider the extent to which I design and intervene