TEAM: Susan Lau, Deane Madsen, Tim McLynch
ADVISOR: Neil Denari
BRIEF: Design a sustainable city to replace Westwood Village
Los Angeles suffers from the strain of sprawl, demanding that its far-flung inhabitants drive across its 60-mile breadth in daily commutes, with work and home separated by traffic-filled thoroughfares. This dependence on the automobile has hindered Angelenos' ability to enjoy life, with several hours per day spent behind the wheel in solidarity with little chance of social interaction. Along with all of the automobiles comes their pollution, which accumulates until winds build strong enough to blow it over the mountains toward Palm Springs.
Our city decries this automotive dependence, instead fostering interrelationships through layers of circulation and variegated programmatic distribution. Noting the many cities built around the need to accommodate vehicular traffic, resulting in grids of towers with avenue-valleys between them, we choose instead to refute the asphyxiating auto-friendly orthogonal grid in favor of irregularity and meandering pedestrian pathways. By submerging automotive traffic beneath our city, we thus produce a fluctuating city pattern with varying scales of both buildings and the voids between them.
Toward the goal of sustainability, our city aims to capture and produce as much energy as it consumes through a site-wide photovoltaic deployment. Likewise, we also strive for self-sufficiency agriculturally, with aeroponic farms eliminating the need for outside sources of produce or the transportation upon which it relies.
As the terminus of the new Westwood light rail line from Exposition, we believe our city will be invigorated with a population that values pathways over parking spaces, cabbage over cars, and density over drive-times.