Project Details

Student/s: Aris Katirtzidis, Efraim Papathomas

Date: August 15, 2016

The Diploma Thesis “Dynamic Waterscapes: Examining the concept of “living” in extreme conditions” is a study of the Variability, as it appears and exists in the wide realm of the science of Architecture. The variability, as a tool or a manner of studying and creating, aims to the adaption of any architectural project to particular conditions in a continuously mutable environment, thus supporting human needs, creating habitable spaces, and protecting human users and their environment, or else, the place where they live and work. By this way, architecture offers solutions to social and environmental issues. In particular, we study the destruction of the natural habitat during the extreme condition of flood, a dynamic natural phenomenon which acts against coastal areas all over the globe, and, furthermore, leads to the desertification of the population. Regarding the site, San Francisco Bay, U.S.A. is selected, and more particular, Bay Slough, in order for the architectural space to be implemented. The phenomenon of alluvion endangers the existing urban space, as well as the natural environment, such as wetlands. The project is based on bottom-up self-organized procedures which lead to the observation and the analysis of certain structures and mechanisms of the nature of the water, regarding the way it behaves during the flood. Furthermore, results are recorded digitally and information is organized in architectural diagrams.
To begin with, a natural platform is created, which acts as a buffer zone, protecting the present urban space. It is, actually, an area which lets the flowing water being defused and absorbed, thus conserving and enhancing the existing natural ecosystems, and offering to the urban space the possibility to be expanded. Natural mechanisms and structures, like sedimentation, erosion, fluid dynamic patterns, etc., as they appear in rivers and river deltas, are selected, as well as network structures to implement the continuous flow of the water and the humankind. Digital tools such as Maya Hair Dynamics, CFD Analysis, Agent Systems and Attractors are used to create an artificial tool which receives information from the natural environment and the digital experimentations, providing the final result. According to the principles of Variability, the result is supposed to function during the two extreme conditions of the complete flood and the absolute calmness. Once the natural platform is completed, the city, and layers of dwelling and public space, is organized, always under the concept of a bottom-up procedure, simulating the phenomena of erosion and sedimentation. The outcome is a waterscape of cell-shaped structures which are emerged in order to conserve the habitat, human lives, activities, and movements, and it is always based upon the principles of Variability.

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