ODA has just launched its latest project, an urban vision for the future of the streets of New York. The project titled Beyond the street- Reimagining the flower district proposes to transform a city block from the outside in, altering the pedestrian experience and introducing new zoning changes that would give landowners air rights or tax credits in exchange for handing over their inner courtyards to be transformed into public/private spaces.
ArchDaily had the chance to talk with Eran Chen, founding principal and executive director of ODA, about the firm’s very special proposal that seeks to improve our urban environment. Check the interview and watch ODA’s explanatory movie.
In order to meet the current and future needs of the people, ODA is proposing “new possibilities to increase the public realm, making the city more equitable and accessible”. Implemented in the Flower District, in the heart of Manhattan, the proposal seeks to regenerate the neighborhood dominated by vehicles and Class C office buildings, by working on its livelihood and attractiveness.
Aiming for a sustainable, social, and economical urban fabric, the Beyond the street project envisions “a localized ecosystem, with urban farming, small businesses and a diversified housing program to support this micro-economy”. Based on a trading system, the concept introduces new zoning regulations that encourage new buildings to include bigger courtyards at the heart of every city block, in return for an increase in floor area and height. These privately owned enclosures will then become public, complying with standards and regulations set by the city. Aiming to generate with time a green web of connected courtyards as this concept gets adopted around other districts, the public realm will expand qualitatively, and the street level activity will become much more diverse.