Project II: Atelier Sergison
Working in pairs students are expected to develop comprehensive design proposals for a site in Antwerp. Projects should in the first instance create a coherent urban strategy which will then be tested and refined at a larger scale. Students are invited to survey a notable example of a building that serves a collective housing programme. They will also be asked to photograph it and draw it very precisely at scale 1:100. A second survey and accurate photographic record will also be made of an existing domestic interior, and students will be asked to produce a scale model that accurately recreates the atmosphere of the interior. Most of the time in the semester will be devoted to developing proposals for a housing project for a site in Antwerp. A study trip is planned in the first weeks of the semester.
Over the course of the academic year, we will be working in two port cities, Genova and Antwerp. In the Spring semester we will work on a site near the city centre of Antwerp. We consider this a form of propositional planning rather than an academic exercise, and our aim is to generate realistic design proposals. Our work will focus on contemporary affordable housing and the evolving image the city. We will consider strategies that might be adopted in the future to achieve a form of densification.
As in previous semesters, we will survey existing buildings carefully. We hope that accurately recording existing examples will inspire solutions rooted in place and in local building culture.
We will explore medium-height, high-density strategies as a solution to current housing needs. Working in pairs, students will develop an urban strategy plan, which will then be developed more precisely and in greater detail. To assist us, we will rely on a panel of experts – architects, planners, and people with experience of building and critically assessing architecture.
Surveys will be one of the key tools for developing projects using references as a means to develop a conceptual base for proposals. In other words, a working method that emphasises learning from existing examples, built or unbuilt, and relies on interpretation and adjustment to produce a convincing project.
Throughout the semester lectures will be offered on topics and themes that are relevant to the course.