After our meeting with Mark Sloan, it was clear that we, as architecture students had an important role in providing the community with not just an information kiosk for Marion Square, but an artistic representation of BlueSphere that would inspire others to take a more active role in sustainability. The artists that will be featured at the Expo have some very compelling work, and for us to get the most out of the project, we will need to dig deep into our creative souls in order to represent them.
For day two, it was sort of a brainstorming session into the possibilities of recycled materials – from the extensive options for scrap steel to picking up pallets on the side of the road for free hard wood. In these beginning stages of conceptual design, we needed to explore the different materials that we might be able to use and think about just how viable those materials might be. Some questions that I raised were:
How can architectural design effect a pragmatic system of display such as a “point of information?”
How large would this structure be? Could it be interactive, movable in any way?
Would we provide an overhead or should we stray away from something that would be considered “inhabitable?”
What type of viewing angles do we want to provide? Should there be storage or seating? What about power?
In Charleston, there are many logistical aspects to designing a new structure downtown. Considering that ours would be temporary, would we have to face some sort of Design Review before erecting a kiosk in the middle of one of the Historic District’s largest parks? It was brought to our attention that the Parks Department would need to be made aware of our doings – we needed to solidify a date for installation and provide info on just how long our temporary structure would exist. Also, in order to have a movie premiere “party,” we needed to get permission from the Special Events division to hold the gathering in one of the parks – Wait a minute, I thought we were just the designers….
In addition to all of the scheduling aspects, we will also have to meet with a mayor-organized group called the DRC – Design Review Committee – to get the go-ahead on our kiosk design. This is NOT the more formal BAR (Board of Architectural Review), which reviews all new construction, alterations, and renovations visible from the public right-of-way. They also review demolitions of buildings which are 75 years or older. Luckily, this was one hoop we would not need to jump through – at least not yet.
So, the brainstorming continues. Desk crits are tomorrow. Design schemes and ideas need to be pouring out of us. We will have an internal review of all 11 of our designs on Friday. The semester has certainly begun….