Biennial Kiosk Competition
Our lakefront kiosk is informed by urban design, structural technology, and architectural theory. Starting with an awareness of our cities past, and our societies ever accelerating advances in technology, we designed not just an architectural solution, but a network of data-collection points which create a responsive lake-front spatial experience. The functionality of an architectural project can no longer be a static physicality subject to entropy. The proposed kiosk elegantly marries structure, design, light, and technology to create a dynamic and efficient form made almost entirely of folded aluminum sheet. The resultant luminous object becomes a participant in activity on the lakefront. It provides visors an elevation in position, vantage point, and awareness of the multitude of actors in our complex urban society.
Our design highlights and celebrates the lakefront as a unifying element for the city of Chicago, responds to the history of place, embodies an optimal structural use of materials and creates a forward-thinking gathering space along the larger 26 mile stretch of the Lake Michigan activity path. The Lakefront, in it’s great expanse, is the longest continuous pedestrian walk in the city. It sees Chicagoans and visitors of every possible background and position, though it is equally accessible to all. It’s been re-invented countless times though has maintained this notion of service to the public. In this way, our kiosk is designed for versatility and adaptability – accommodating functions ranging from food and product vendors, to stage venue. Like the lakefront, our kiosk takes on the needs and character of the location in which it is placed. The kiosks acts as markers of the past – located at latitudinally projected points on the waterfront. The kiosks draw attention to important historical people and events that have taken place inland. Each kiosk features two 12’x15′ perforated back lit image walls highlighting events and people shaping our city. As an object, the kiosk is designed not as a destination, but as a possible diversion – taking the curious walker up to a view, then back to the path. It’s form responds to the horizontality of the lake as well as the constant activity up and down the lake-front, embracing the flow of pedestrian and bike path users. The object placed between two paths optimal circulation and access. The duel/double sided entry allows access from both sides. Offset to the 200sqft kiosk service space, are the stairs up and onto a viewing platform above that allows the public to interact with the object and the city around it. While the image wall refers to historic people and events, the lighting itself celebrates the present. As each runner, cyclist, or casual stroller passes, the lights
are slowly changed from a dormant white color up through blue and yellow to a kinetic red. If one were to transverse the entirety of the lake front, these kiosks or beacons, would indicate history and activity. As technology progresses at a logarithmic rate, the spaces that we occupy are no longer strictly physical. Each individual leaves a digital wake as the result of their actions in physical space, a web presence is unconsciously created, and social functions which previously required physical vessels are now being uploaded to the cloud. Our project aims to bring the lakefront into the 21st century and into this new reality. With motion sensors, micro-controllers, and networked outputs, each kiosk – up and down the lake front- measures the activity along the Lake Front path. The data is used in two ways: First, lights respond real-time indicating activity by gradations of color. Second, the data is uploaded to the cloud where the Department of Planning and Development or the Chicago Parks District can use the data to inform future projects and policy. Additionally, the data may be made public on the Chicago Data Portal, in light with the “free-use” ideals of the lake front. In alternative scenarios, the lights may be used to supplement musical performances, to display patterns and communication, or to respond to a vast array of other inputs: audio, temperature, precipitation, tweets, geo-tagged online posts, surveys, etc. The primary design material – aluminum – appropriately creates a day-time exterior environment which does not retain heat. The images are cut into the aluminum panels as dot screen laser cut perforations. The panel sizes optimize material to raw dimensions. The bent aluminum plate is self supporting , easily transportable and assembly is on site with mechanical fasteners. The primary structure – a beam element is minimally shop welded and brought to site for assembly. The folded aluminum plate design expresses the movement of the users and the pliable nature of the material. When the kiosk is not in use perforated aluminum panels fold down to secure the object. The aluminum panels are durable and anti -graffiti paint is applied to resist vandalism and make it easily maintained. This white powder coat of paint allows for the changing personality of the color spectrum to take precedent on the surface of the kiosk. The brightly lit surfaces form a dazzling chain of color that strings along the Chicago shoreline serving as an indication of use and a reminder of our history.
- Scope: Design Competition
- Date: 24.04.2014
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org