The events of October 28, 2012 caused by hurricane Sandy in New York were beyond the scale and scope of our expectations. But imagining a sustainable waterfront lies in the realization of the changing of our climate as well as our shifting landscapes. The sea level is rising and solutions should not only respond to the conditions of the next thirty or fifty years, but the next two or three hundred years, where the entire peninsula could potentially be under water.
In response to the challenges presented, "ex.terra" proposes the creation of a new ground, which serves as an infrastructural network. The structure, elevated 10-15m meters above the current sea level, connects to the existing subway line, bridges and roads in the rockaway. The geometry of the new structure, as an anamorphic grid, creates a structural system which is able to resist and at the same time capture the energy of the wind and the water. The city is then plugged into this infastructure with designated blocks for different use.
To maintain the spirit of the seaside community, the infrastructural system creates a series of boardwalks and piers along the beach to activate it, and may one day replace the beach as the new waterfront. The housing blocks consist of about 100 units facing a courtyard. The courtyard is intended for farming, gardening, recreation, public events, as well as a protected gathering space in case of emergency.
Energy is a key element of this proposal. Taking advantage of the daily cycle of nature, such as water tides, sunlight and high wind velocity, the project is able to harness the needed energy and create a self-sufficient community.
Winning proposal, MoMA PS1 Rockaway Call for Ideas, April 2013
Exhibited in: Expo1: New York, MoMA PS1, New York, May - June 2013