Commonthread: Hyperlocal Community for Global Applications / HTDSTUDIO

Courtesy of HTDSTUDIO

This community prototype, designed by HTDSTUDIO, calls for a targeted approach to true sustainability and a cost effective model as key residential, commercial, cultural and institutional components reside on the same one block site. It is a de-facto return to the true, urban planning model (at least from a practical standpoint) that came to prominence in the 19th and 20th Centuries. This model proved most sensible where most goods and services were locally provided to the neighborhood. The advantage is that residents would have essential elements of their neighborhood within walking distance of less than one city block; in this case the study is in the Gowanus – Red Hook section of Brooklyn, New York. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Commonthread solution to a growing urban problem

Courtesy of HTDSTUDIO

Post-Industrial land can be developed as an ‘all-in-one’ community where residents with growing families have educational, commercial and cultural outlets at their disposal; additionally, a working farm is there to not only provide fresh, local produce to the area residents, but also to sell on the open market to supplement operating costs for the entire development; this also helps to decrease the need for fossil fuels.

Programmatics and building massing

Courtesy of HTDSTUDIO

Often seen as pragmatic and mutually beneficial for all income level residents, at it’s core, the entire neighborhood benefits from parity of housing, education and services.

RooFarm™ Layout / Location Plan

Courtesy of HTDSTUDIO

Food is becoming increasingly expensive globally as it is connected to the spiraling cost of oil; this is a model that aims to considerably reduce this burdensome dynamic while anticipating the need to reduce carbon emissions as well as the use of pesticides, additives, etc. as prevalent in the produce sector. The undulating design of the roof structure is composed of a diagonal grid which not only reduces the amount of materials required for its construction, but also enables the process of rainwater capture and filtering that is stored in several cisterns on the site for crop irrigation, and supplemental gray water systems. Vegetables, flowers and other staples would be grown within individual sectors of the roof structure, arranged according to sun exposures and traditional gardening techniques. Community composting will be implemented through specific food waste recycling.

13th Street South Entry

Courtesy of HTDSTUDIO

A canopy constructed of recycled and reclaimed materials, including steel, various timbers and grass/woods (bamboo). Additionally, serving as the upper roof level for community gardening (the bulk of local produce) it provides exposures for several solar panel arrays, as well as a phalanx of vertical axis wind turbines that produce supplemental power to residential, community and commercial enclosures. It is accessible by way of exterior stairs and several secure elevators and the main southeast ‘hillclimb’ and tiered garden.

2nd Avenue West Entry

Now more than ever, a cost-effective element of ‘new’ construction that is a plentiful resource globally giving this concept a broader viability around the world. The unitized containers can be configured and fitted by fabricators and then delivered and ‘installed’ on site at a fraction of traditional construction time. This results in a substantial cost offset with regard to initial site development, and construction costs, as well as a reduction in CO2 production.

Courtesy of HTDSTUDIO

Courtesy of HTDSTUDIO

Public Theatre

Created as a multi-use performance space that can provide creative opportunities for local area youth. It can also collaborate with the Children’s School, area not-for-profits and corporations in partnerships to promote diverse, creative excellence.

Architect: HTDSTUDIO Location: Brooklyn, New York, USA / Worldwide Client: Mayor’s Office for Long Term Planning + Sustainability / EPA Total Floor Area: 600,000 sq ft / 55,740 m2 Year: 2007

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About this author
Cite: Alison Furuto. "Commonthread: Hyperlocal Community for Global Applications / HTDSTUDIO" 01 Mar 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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