Amaranth Alley; Intervention in the Urban Fabric
This project is a catalytic intervention within the urban fabric of Washington Park. The goal of this project is to renovate the 34th Street alleyway from a utilitarian pathway into a multi-functional site for community interaction. By providing a space for communal ownership and activity, the project seeks to reduce crime and vandalism in the area and create a safe zone for wholesome recreation and economic endeavors. In order to achieve these goals, individual spaces along the alley are reprogrammed and incorporated into a network of in between or thresholds spaces at an intimate human scale
The Amaranth Alley will beautify a forgotten space and create a linear park for the community. The various surfaces and edges in the
alley act as billboards to showcase community artwork and cultivated vegetation signifies the growth of the community into the future.
Spaces of repose, recreation, and socialization along the path activate networks between friends, neighbors, and families. The alley is a
social laboratory, each space is catalytic, and the physical parameters of the space coupled with the unique atmospheric conditions of
the alley actively provoke interaction. The presiding center piece, the Toolshed, is an omnipresent beacon over the system, providing
spaces for residents to commune over knowledge and food. The whole of the project represents a cooperative system wherein the built environment creates the social condition. In this case the environment is owned by those interacting within it, creating a self-perpetuating social network that will be catalytic to the growth of the community.
Amaranth Alley consists of a unique system of human-scaled nodes, producing a linear chain of programmable spaces. Key links within this chain are identified on the map as activity sites. Each link is proportional to the next in size and, together, they form a sequence of spaces that influence the way a person may move through this alley. These linked sites break the linearity of the alley to create a rhythmic cadence- a choreographed series of steps and thresholds that facilitate and encourage human engagement with the surrounding environment. The sites along this alley are designed to operate on two different levels, one for recreation and the other for economic activities.
The implementation of The proposed design will happen is carved into within the existing infrastructure. It reuses and take advantage of dilapidated and unused spaces, vacant lots and fields, and existing built structures in order to lay out a series of spaces that will collectively provide community space and programs for community use. Vacant lots and fields will be turned into areas for recreation and economic productivity while dilapidated structures will become support spaces and and seating for those areas. Existing structures such as garages and storage sheds are will be converted into multi-use spaces sites with intent on for economic productivity and cultural nourishment.