Thesis Final Process Book

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Thesis Final Process Book


  • 1develop the dividemaria lyate

  • 2

  • 3develop the divide

  • 4Thesis presented to the

    Faculty of the Department of Architecture

    College of Architecture and the Built Environment

    Philadelphia University

    In partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of


    Thesis Studio Instructor Susan Frostn

    Academic AdvisorChristopher Harnish

    Professional AdvisorLance Loethen

    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    May 2013

    Develop The Divide


    Maria Lyate

  • 5table of contentsI. Title Page

    II. Table of Contents

    III. Thesis Abstract

    IV. Topic Paper

    V. Thesis Objectives & Investigative Methods

    VI. Appendix

    VII. Works Cited

    VIII. Site Analysis

    IX. Site Documentation

    X.Program Selection

    XI. Preliminary Design

    XII. Process Documentation

    XIII. Final Design Documentation

    XIV. Analysis/Critique of Completed Project

  • 6abstract.proposal

  • 7abstract.proposal

  • 8Philadelphia holds great historical and industrial value but is currently overgrown with expressways and fragmented by uninhabitable spaces. The addition of intricate street networks throughout Philadelphia has resulted in the decay of social and natural interaction. Inside the urban boundaries of a city, people, build-ings, and streets coexist but because they all function within the same constrained boundaries, people and streets specifically clash. Walkable pathways are meant to connect a person to their destination and should be a safe and even sustainable solution to excessive automobile transportation. Corridors can act as people movers interiorly and exteriorly whether they are sidewalks, dirt paths, or hallways. Unfortunately, these paths are truly failing to provide a more reliable alternative because of their disjointed patterns. Each district or neighborhood no matter the location should essentially consist of a series of corridors and connections both accessible through motorized transit and human powered transit. With so much of our transportation focused on mass transit and the automobile, neighborhood boundaries are abruptly drawn when new roadways are installed. These edge conditions are where problems reside. Today, the edge is a divide between decay and inhabitation, which is in turn limiting the natural and economic growth of Phila-delphia. There is an opportunity here to develop an environmentally beneficial route for the public to safely and enjoyably connect to their destinations while also benefiting surrounding neighborhoods with residen-tial and commercial redevelopment. It is time to develop the divide.

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    The ideal city of the future promotes diversity, walkability, and most importantly sustainability through both materi-ality and transportation. Though the word sustainability has taken to be a strong issue in our daily lives, its appli-cations are often perceived incorrectly. Most believe that living sustainably means adding a green roof here and there, but the concepts of sustainable design are far richer. Due to a growing trend in urban sprawl, the constric-tion and congestion of cities are becoming undesirable. Transportation is key to the success of all cities as well as all communities within a city. With such an emphasis on the use of cars and public transportation, we are under the assumption that walkways are just as efficient. A city contains many pathways of all scales. Some see these path-ways as corridors, which are simply interior and exterior paths. They are varying in size and density throughout the city, but their commonality is the fact that they move people. Whether walking, shopping, biking, or eating, these woven pathways join a person to their destination. Though walking paths should be a safe and even sustainable solution to excessive automobile transportation, they are truly failing to provide a more reliable alternative to the car.

    Today, the divide between decay and inhabitation is strictly drawn within a few neighborhoods of the downtown district. Philadelphia alone holds great historical value within its various wards and districts, but is overgrown with expressways and uninhabitable spaces due to the addition of inefficient street networks. There is an opportunity here to develop an environmentally beneficial route for commuters to safely and enjoyably connect to their desti-nations. With the addition of this pedestrian pathway, residents and visitors will be able to interact with Philadelphia as a whole while experiencing various programs along the way. In addition to its benefit to commuters, surround-ing neighborhoods will gain both residential and commercial rejuvenation and redevelopment within the industrial zones which allowed for Philadelphias initial growth hundreds of years ago.

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    [1-2]Scranton, Philip B. Philadelphias Industrial History: A Context and Overview. (Workshop of the World-Philadelphia, 1990).[3-4]Farr, Douglas. Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design with Nature. (Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley, 2008, 19).[5]Transportation - The 2012 Statistical Abstract - U.S. Census Bureau. (Census Bureau, 2012). corridor:

    _A long passage in a building from which doors lead into rooms _A belt of land between two other areas, typically having a particular feature or giving access to a particular area What it is: _varying in size & density throughout a city _people mover _walking, shopping, biking, eating, commuting _void

    What it will be: _encourage positive social interactions _safe & sustainable solution to excessive automobile transportation _reliable alternative to something dangerous & disjointed

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    From roughly 1880 through the 1920s, Philadelphias industrial districts supported an array of mills and plants but no city in the United States had a wider range of textile products to offer. Philadelphia was drastically expanding as it introduced more and more goods, but transportation to and from was becoming an issue in need of solv-ing. Philadelphias industrial foundation was more of a network of separate specialties. Each neighborhood was specifically focused on one kind of production. This industrial process is what essentially divided neighborhoods. Though it was a division, it also brought all producers together to combine their specialties into one product. By the mid-nineteenth century, a pattern had emerged of smaller industries interspersed with domestic housing throughout much of Old City and Center City. This meant that rather than consisting of multiple large-scale facto-ries focused on production, various smaller businesses existed within districts producing specific individual items. These small, often family owned businesses would produce their part of the good and then continue to pass it to a more specialized business that would complete the next step. This process allowed for a grand network of fabrica-tion that positively linked areas of the city of Philadelphia. Thousands of modest scale firms were linked together through contracts and trade in elaborate ways that make it possible to view the city as a vast workshop [1]. This industrial fabric that stretched across Philadelphia unfortunately suffered with the demise of the canal system be-cause of the rise of railroads and motor transportation. This transformed the built environment of Philadelphia as the rail lines of the Pennsylvania, Philadelphia & Reading, and Baltimore & Ohio Railroads edged the city on various levels [2]. Holes were torn in the fabric because of the division created by these lines. The most devastating issue being the fact that transportation had become too difficult. Businessmen and women were no longer able to safely or easily walk or bike their product to the next neighbor. In turn, previously existing business connections were severed and the city limits became strictly defined.

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    With the opening of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge in 1926, Vine Street had become an important east-west arterial route through Center City Philadelphia. In 1945, as part of the citys postwar development plan, the Philadelphia City Planning Commission proposed a depressed six-lane expressway along the Vine Street corridor [10]. Similar in design to todays Vine Street Expressway, the route was to be bound by service roads to allow for cross use within flanking neighborhoods. The expressway was meant to be open to all vehicles of all sizes and uses. The route originally ordered to have stone archways and overpasses to be landscaped. The landscaping was to camouflage the submerged concrete lanes submerged below. Be-tween the main roadway, service roads, and landscaping, including construction and additional right-of-way costs, the expressway was estimated to cost $26 million [8]. The Vine Street Expressway was to be the northern part of the Center City loop that also comprised of the Schuylkill Expressway (I-76), the Delaware Expressway (I-95) and the unbuilt Crosstown Expressway (I-695) along the South Street-Lombard Street corridor. In 1950, the Philadelphia City Planning Commission took the recommendations of the City Council one step further by providing routing and interchange plans [10].

    [1-2]Scranton, Philip B. Philadelphias Industrial History: A Context and Overview. (Workshop of the World-Philadelphia, 1990).[3-4]Farr, Douglas. Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design with Nature. (Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley, 2008, 19).[5]Transportation - The 2012 Statistical Abstract - U.S. Census Bureau. (Census Bureau, 2012).[6-10]Vine Street Expressway Historic Overview. (Philadelphia Area Roads, Crossings and, 2011).

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    Communities as we know it are meant to be structured by public space and centered on a circulation system to support the pedestrian as well as the vehicle. Unfortunately, city centers have deteriorated because much of the transportation routes have made it far too easy to live within the suburbs and work within the urban context. In addition to the human, economic vitality has also pushed out into the suburbs causing cities to struggle financially. According to the values of New Urbanism, the relationship between architecture and public space can and should be the strongest in urban settings. Though New Urbanism has a strong focus on the role of walking and close proximity lifestyles, its architecture has suffered. There is instead a strong focus on the pedestrian but not the des-tination. A great opportunity lies within the idea of a pedestrian focused community because it positively influences the people that travel within its limits. Cities possess great opportunity because of their ability to hold all of the necessary goods for survival within a limited distance. This then allows for a high level of human interaction and social growth which is ideal to economic expansion as well. Unfortunately, the city of Philadelphia can be viewed as more of a burden to living because of its increasingly high travel difficulty especially as a pedestrian. The networks of transportation routes surrounding the city and its neighborhoods have overwhelmed the opportunity that exists within. The utilization of existing infrastructure to introduce new travel and social patterns hold the best potential and opportunity to preserve these open urban spaces. By revitalizing existing sites, new growth will be grounds for easier development and adaption to current transit routes. Architecture is about how we form the region, about its density, scale and public space in every context. The positivity of dense city centers should reach out to other points within a city rather than being disconnected by expressways, rail lines, and secondary streets.

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    Today, we can recognize the impact new urbanism, smart growth and green building could have on the success of a design. There is plenty of evidence to realize that our lifestyles have led to a serious deterioration in public health and we have become a population, completely deprived of exercise and natural outdoor interaction [3]. A baby born in the United States will spend close to 87 percent of his or her lifetime indoors and another 4 percent in enclosed transit. The reason for this is that we have become extreme experts at creating shelter with outstand-ing levels of indoor comfort. With our indoor lifestyles becoming more and more comforting, statistics are showing that each average house is actually increasing in size. From 1970-2000, the average household size in the US shrank from 3.14 to 2.62 people, while the size of the typical new American house increased from 1385 square feet to 2140 square feet, a rise of 54 percent [4]. The lack of human contact with nature has created terrible damage and a strong reliance on enclosed lifestyles. This containment not only occurs inside a building or home but also within the confines of a car, bus, plane or train. The average human spends a large portion of their day traveling but there is often an opportunity to travel outside by walking or biking a short distance. From just a simple handful of statistics, it is evident the progress we are making in energy efficiency cannot keep up with our appetite for bigger houses, better cars, and a faster lifestyle. For example, most commuters in New York City get to work by public transit because of its famously extensive subway and bus system. In many cases this is out of habit and resistance to change. Similarly, Philadelphia is just as dependent upon the car and mass transit because in recent statistics about 280,000 workers drove alone, while public transportation (including taxis) was utilized by 145,000, and only about 1/3 of that, or 50,000 people, walked to work [5]. Sustainable urbanism draws at-tention to the enormous opportunity to redesign the built environment in a manner that supports a higher quality of life and promotes a healthy and positive American lifestyle without the addition of even more public transporta-tion or roadways.

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    Rather than continuing on this negative path to obesity, congestion and stress, the need for an alternative walking and biking path is inevitable. Through the study of precedents and similar concepts, Philadelphia has shown great potential for the introduction of a green corridor. Most study has been directed towards the Callowhill and Vine Street area, which have multiple blocks of deteriorating land and structure. The Vine Street Expressway could be the sole reason for this deterioration but looking at its history, this was certainly not the intention of the East-West route. Early on, with the opening of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge in 1926, the Vine Street area had become an important axis route through the center of Philadelphia [6]. In 1945, as part of the citys postwar development plan, the planning commission proposed a sunken six-lane expressway along the Vine Street corridor [7]. Though not exact, the design similarly included a main artery with multiple parallel service roads that would link and service the surrounding neighborhoods. With all secondary street network costs included, the expressway was estimated to cost $26 million [8]. The Vine Street Expressway was to be the connecting loop of the Schuylkill Expressway (I-76), the Delaware Expressway (I-95) and the unbuilt Crosstown Expressway (I-695). Some issues arose with the other strong divide created by the Reading Viaduct or the old Reading Railroad. Because of the overlapping of the Viaduct lines and the proposed Vine Street Expressway, some changes had to be made to the level the expressway would be introduced. An eastern extension of the Vine Street Expressway to the Benjamin Franklin Bridge ap-proach was introduced because of the combination of viaduct, underground, and historical site interruption issues. It is stated multiple times that the Vine Street Expressway is to be a submerged freeway with frontage roads, but the amount of land and buildings this would eat-up is never discussed in the planning commissions documents. From 18th Street to about 10th Street, the expressway is depressed, and built between two street-level service roads.

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    The depressed mainline consists of two 36-foot-wide three-lane roadways. From 18th street west and 10th street east, the expressway runs at street level. Some specific planning has come about especially within the Chinatown district but to this day, still needs more attention and development. The concept of flanking a four lane expressway through a city sounds overwhelming and that it is! Although the revitalization of sur-rounding neighborhoods was not planned, the freeway was designed to serve three primary functions: (1) a through route for traffic with origins and destinations outside the city area; (2) a collector and distributor for traffic originating outside the city area and destined to the general area of the central business district (CBD); and (3) an arterial, particularly the frontage roads, for local trips within the area [9]. These three functions are evident but the use of the neighborhoods surrounding the impacted area have been left up for development. Currently, some neighborhoods have flourished from the groundbreaking but others have clearly been distrupted and their original function no longer remains. Strongly to the north of the express-way, there is largescale factory deterioration. To the south where center city resides, grand development to the expressways edge is continually growing. This single difference gives clear evidence to the fact that the expressways construction has caused drastic change.

    [1-2]Scranton, Philip B. Philadelphias Industrial History: A Context and Overview. (Workshop of the World-Philadelphia, 1990).[3-4]Farr, Douglas. Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design with Nature. (Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley, 2008, 19).[5]Transportation - The 2012 Statistical Abstract - U.S. Census Bureau. (Census Bureau, 2012).[6-10]Vine Street Expressway Historic Overview. (Philadelphia Area Roads, Crossings and, 2011).

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    On the north side of the expressway between 8th Street and 9th Street, the Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation constructed a community of mixed-income residences, with parking and green space over the Center City Commuter Tunnel. This was a creative way to comply with regulations prohibiting heavy construction on land above a subway. For now, this development has come to a hault and the design is back on the drawing boards for further investigation. The reason Chinatown has shown more potential for expansion and growth is predominantly in its location. The fact that Chinatown and parts of the Callowhill district have begun to jump across the Vine Street expressway has shown the potential and opportunity other neighborhoods have to do the same. Throughout this paper the concept of changing ones perception has always been in the back of my mind and hinted through my writing. As citizens, thinkers, and even designers, we are in charge of creating our future. Whether it is a healthy and full life, or one where we spend our days on a bus traveling, it is our choice. By introducing alternative choices, growth, development and improvement will naturally occur. Here is where the potential for cross growth and weaving can take place. Not only is this a physical stretch across the expressway but it is also an extremely mental jump as well. Changing ones view on transportation and the ease of getting from place to place could be altered with the addition of a series of bridge pieces. These alternatives should not just be focused on transportation and getting from place to place but they also need to specifically address the residents concerns and ideals. Architecture is and always will be a profession that must meet basic human needs but must also be what the client wants. In the city of Philadelphia, most people want to wake up for work, be ready to jump out the door quickly, get to work as fast as possible and get through the day as quickly as they can. With such a fast paced set of requirements for everyday living, it is no wonder we choose to hop in our car and get to our destination in the shortest amount of time.

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    In the suburbs, this is possible, but in a city, congestion and rush hours keep us from enjoying the luxury of a simple and short drive. So again, the question is, how easily can someone transform another persons everyday habits? With the end goal being to encourage physical pedestrian activity, the issue at hand will certainly by the amount of change one individual is willing to test. Though there is no way for a complete change in public transportation, there is a desire to teach of the sustainable and healthy lifestyles that walking and physical activity lead to. In a time that is in desperate need for global and economical upturn, it is my goal to introduce, one step at a time, an alternative to gas powered transportation. This singular pathway will join many neighborhoods and reach from the east to the west, as well as the north to the south with an emphasis on the divide of the expressway. The divide between decay and inhabitation will be grown over with new program which will provide economic and social opportunity for all neighboring communities. Philadelphia holds great value because of its original wealth of job opportunity. By introduc-ing this environmentally beneficial route for pedestrians and commuters, people, families, and businesses will again be woven together to allow for a subtle but substantial positive change.

    [1-2]Scranton, Philip B. Philadelphias Industrial History: A Context and Overview. (Workshop of the World-Philadelphia, 1990).[3-4]Farr, Douglas. Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design with Nature. (Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley, 2008, 19).[5]Transportation - The 2012 Statistical Abstract - U.S. Census Bureau. (Census Bureau, 2012).[6-10]Vine Street Expressway Historic Overview. (Philadelphia Area Roads, Crossings and, 2011).

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    data mapping

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    data mapping

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    An illustration of green spaces of multiple scales along the Vine Street Expressway. These spaces vary from designed gardens to vacant grass lots. In this diagram, the expressway runs through the center of the green spaces. The connecting lines show the path one must take to get from the expressway to an open area. Towards the waterfront, most connecting paths are lost between Callowhill and Vine Street. The expressway creates a large disconnect at that point.

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    E G



    The Vine Street Expressway essentially connects Pennsylvania and New Jersey through one long East-West axis. Though most of its expanse is submerged below street level, each end is either above or at ground level. In this study, the white path is what exists above ground, while the royal blue is what is submerged. With further study, the sectional quality of this design will have a great impact on the qualities of the neighborhoods that exist above the expressway. A visual observation of the connecting bridges will also show how pedestrians are able to commute above the divide.

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    A compilation of green/open space, waterways, and adjoining streets at a large urban scale. The city can be seen as a whole. The binding waterways show how this strong East-West axis links both New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

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    RESIDENCE [rez-i-duh ns]

    noun 1. the place, especially the house, in which a person lives or resides; dwelling place; home: Their residence is in New York City. 2. a structure serving as a dwelling or home, especially one of large proportion and superior quality: They have a summer residence in Connecticut. 3. the act or fact of residing: during his residence in Spain. 4. the act of living or staying in a specified place while performing official duties, carrying on studies or research, awaiting a divorce, etc. 5. the time during which a person resides in a place: a residence there of five years.

  • 27 RESIDENTIALresidential

    The Spring Garden West neighborhood is bound on its edges by strict transportation corridors. These streets create a strong definition of the neighborhood and its program. Along the top, Fairmount draws the line for program scale. Within most of the Spring Garden East neighborhood, building structure is limited to large scale commercial use along Broad Street. Once you approach about 15th street, program drastically changes to a small scale residential use.

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    NORTHERN LIBERTIESresidentialThough Northern Liberties is fairly large, some of its parts are very suburban in relation to its residential design. Neighborhoods within Northern Liberties can vary in scale and size but within the Poplar district, the conditions below exist. Once you approach the east/west axis of Girard Avenue, this residential quality again changes in style and scale.

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    LOFT LIVINGloft living

    Within the waterfront area, multiple residential developements occur. Specifically below the expressway is the Franklin Callowhill neighborhood which is characterized by highly developed residential and mixed-use lofts. Most large scale living structures have been developed through adaptive re-use since their original creation as industrial production structures.

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    BUSINESS [biz-nis]

    noun 1. an occupation, profession, or trade: His business is poultry farming. 2. the purchase and sale of goods in an attempt to make a profit. 3. a person, partnership, or corporation engaged in commerce, manufacturing, or a service; profit-seeking enterprise or concern. 4. volume of trade; patronage: Most of the stores business comes from local families. 5. a building or site where commercial work is carried on, as a factory, store, or office; place of work: His business is on the corner of Broadway and Elm Street.

  • 31 VINE STREET NORTHvine street north

    A much less developed area binds the Vine Street Expressway on the northern side. These areas have become deteriorated because of the placement of the expressway and its adjoining streets. Again, on the left side of Broad Street lies Spring Garden West and East, on the right is Poplar West and East. These areas are then cut along Spring Garden, where the scale jumps down to small residential use.

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    VINE STREET SOUTHvine street south

    In opposition, the Franklintown and Callowhill West areas are much more developed and upscale. Though some areas are still negatively linked to the design of the expressway, most consist of high-rise structures both of commercial and residential use. In this instance, the Vine Street Expressway is clearly another barrier between neighborhoods and the possibility for their continued developement or deterioration.

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    vine street south BROAD STREETbroad streetThe Broad Street district consists of multiple official neighborhoods. From the north around Girard Avenue you start within the Cabot neighborhood and then progress to Francisville, Spring Garden East, and then Hahnemann directly below the expressway. Broad divides most wards and districts within the city of Philadel-phia.

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    PARK [pahrk]

    verb (used with object) 1. to place or leave (a vehicle) in a certain place for a period of time. 2.Informal. to put, leave, or settle: Park your coat on the chair. Park yourself over there for a moment. assemble (equipment or supplies) in a military park. enclose in or as in a park. 5.Informal. to invest (funds) in a stock, bond, etc., considered to be a safe investment with little chance of depreciation, as during a recession or an unstable economic period, or until one finds a more profitable investment.

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    In the waterfront area, multiple residential developements occur again. Below the expressway, Callowhill West and Franklin-Callowhill surround Chinatown to the south. Above the expressway, Northern Liberties starts. With a combination of large scale residential, small individual housing and commercial buildings, this area has the most mix in use.

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    1 2Spring Garden:From 23rd street to 20th street running from North to South, there is an expansive amount of residential development. These small scale rowhomes are often capped on the corners by small businesses, often convenience stores. In additon to residential program, parking lots and a single hotel exist. Spring Garden:From 19th street to 15th street running from North to South, there is a great change in scale as well as program. Here there are large scale business and residential buildings. These structures hold a far more abrasive quality than the previous four blocks.

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    3Spring Garden:From 19th street to 15th street running from North to South, there is a great change in scale as well as program. Here there are large scale business and residential buildings. These structures hold a far more abrasive quality than the previous four blocks. Spring Garden:From 15th street to 12th street running from North to South, there is again a large change in program and scale. Rather than containing high-rises, these blocks contain smaller, and shorter parking lots, businesses, and far more vacant lots. The change from 23rd street to 12th street is clearly drastic.

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    THESIS OBJECTIVES:_Alternative to driving -provide an easier path -mass transportation routes that run through the area -on/off ramp issues_Safer route -bikes/people -travel route to work, grocer, restaurants, shops, home -people mover_Redevelop the boundary -deteriorated edges -no more empty edges_Explore the divide -bridge the gap -join sides currently divided -how are these neighborhoods effected -are they different uses because of the divides_What has this done to the person -is it a positive insertion -is that why they live there -parking issues -disconnecting family and friends

    _Benefit Commuters_Add residential commercial weaving -an opportunity for development -inserting economical benefits to deteriorating neighborhoods -weaving commercial, residential, green_Rejuvenate industrial city that used to exist_Environmentally beneficial route -minimize use of automobiles -actual green movement rather than just pasting to existing_Safe, Enjoyable, Direct_Interaction -social benefit -interactions with other people and other activities -dividing the car and the person_Interconnect -interject program within larger scale pathway

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    precedent study

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    precedent study

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  • 50 cited

  • 51 cited

  • 52Photo Credit: U.S. Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2012

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    An early exploration of traffic and the issues it creates. On the left, a chart of statistics from 1990, 2000, & 2010 show some of the most congested cities in the country. Each city has information regarding population, fuel costs, and congestion rates and times. Both studies are illustrating the same cities but different years. The green highlighting shows the highest rated city followed by the second highest in orange. These are then compared in the following map.

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    From the previous data exploration, a map is created with the highest congested cities in the United States. These cities contain a double blue marker, whereas the other cities only contain a single point. The cities are then connected through a series of three lines to show the year of observance. Solid shows 2010, dashed shows 2000, and dotted shows 1990 statistics.

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    9th Street Branch_The northeast leg continues to 915 Spring Garden Street and into the West Poplar and Brandywine East neighborhoods of Northern Liberties. This leg ends at the 800 block of Fairmount Avenue.

    City Branch_The western leg begins at Callowhill Street, sloping down to street level at 13th and Noble, and leads directly to North Broad Street.

    Built in the 1890s, the Viaduct runs 10 blocks through the Callowhill and Chinatown North neighborhoods, from Vine Street to Fairmount Avenue.

    Reading Railroad commuter trains used the 4.7-acre, mile-long Via-duct to access the Reading Head-house Terminal at 12th and Market Street.

    Service on the Viaduct was discontinued in 1984, when the Center City commuter tunnel was opened.

    Photo Credit:

  • 57

    1. Anaruk, Amy . Smart Growth vs. New Urbanism: The Changing Face of U.S. Communities. Celsius -Reduce Global Celsius. N.p., Web. 12 Aug. 2012.

    [A short article on Smart Growth and New Urbanism gives a strong opinion on the impact that New Urbanism has on communities. Though the author seems resistant to designers and planners ideas for the future, her outlook on Smart Growth is much stronger. Yet another term for sprawl and expansion reveals how we can restore and limit the amount of suburban and urban context we consume with housing and commercial construction. She also gives a few brief case study descriptions.]

    2. Campoli, Julie, and Alex S. MacLean. Visualizing Density. Cambridge, Mass.: Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, 2007.

    [Visualizing Density is a visual representation of different communities and the effects of different density patterns. It is far less textual writing than the other books but is just as helpful in its ability to illustrate the impact of planning and design on communities. Camponi discusses what all peoplewant, and that is a beautiful, affordable, efficient, and environmentally friendly community. Though these are all simple and easy concepts, the effective-ness of current designs have yet to combine all elements of a perfectly dense neighborhood. Our future has to overcome the worlds opposition to density while growing and sprawling across economically stable ground.]

    3. Crawford, J. H.. Carfree Cities. Utrecht: International Books, 2000.

    [Carfree Cities is a book all about exactly that; building a city without reliance on the car. Crawford convinces us to imagine life where everything we need-ed to survive was within a five-minute walk of our front door. No danger from cars, no pollution, no loud noise. The book focuses on how we can design for these kinds of communities and cities and revert back to car-free lifestyles where the streets are for human activity.]

    4. Dolan, Thomas. Live-work Planning and Design: Zero-Commute Housing. Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons, 2012.

    [The book Live-Work Planning and Design: Zero-Commute Housing is a much more specific and focused study on how designers create live-work build-ings. Especially focusing on homes, Dolan walks a reader through the process of how to design a space, get it approved and then built. A specific focus is placed on real life examples as well as reflection upon project types such as flexhouses, courtyard communities, and housing over retail. The book is particularly helpful in that it includes code specifications and detailed resources for urban planning and urban designs that incorporate live-work housing.]

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    5. Farr, Douglas. Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design with Nature. Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley, 2008.

    [This book is written by the chair of the US Green Building Councils LEED for Neighborhood Development Core Committee. Because it was produced by the committee, it is a documentation piece that tracks the patterns of human existence and settlement. The book looks to help design leaders to understand the elements needed for designing sustainably. There are pages upon pages of charts and instructions outlining how the United States has both evolved and crumbled at the same time over the past few decades. It focuses on sustainability as the center of all new construction, but also lists ways of building green without lowering standards. The main concepts in the book focus on increasing sustainability through density, integrating ways of becoming auto-independent through walkable neighborhoods, increasing high performance buildings within neighborhoods, and essentially increasing the links between human health and the environmental benefits of nature.]

    6. Godschalk, David R., Daniel A. Rodrguez, Philip Berke, and Edward John Kaiser. Urban Land Use Planning. 5th ed. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2006.

    [Focusing on a specific section of this book, I found in the article Land Use Planning Challenges that it was easy to distinguish the conflicts and challenges that arise while designing sustainably or planning urban development. Several sub-sections look at how valuable livable communities are and how we can construct them. Though livability and livable communities are not a defined concept, livability operates at the level of the everyday physical environment and focuses on place making. This term place making is one that resonates not only through the article but also through my own ideas. Rather than just designing, we are making.]

    7. Haas, Tigran. New Urbanism and Beyond: Designing Cities for the Future. New York: Rizzoli International Publications :2008.

    [This book not only focuses on New Urbanism but also the broad design of urban spaces and how we plan to hurdle its obstacles. Starting with the idea of New Urbanism, we see a different view on how the human being is the measure of all things. We must focus almost all of our energy on creating public space to fuel urban socioculture in cities. Thought the importance has essentially been on the inhabitant, in this book all transportation, infrastructure, and neighborhoods are designed around the human measurement and proportion. Streets, buildings, and everything down to the sidewalks are sized to create the most simple and easy way of commuting and interacting with other human beings. At a larger scale, urban planning has stemmed from New Urbanism and its guiding principles. This book looks into what has worked and what still needs work. To me the most important issue worth focusing on is the boundary or edge of these communities. How do we distinguish an edge? I looked to Louise Nystrom and Ali Madanipour because of their articles on Restraining Sprawl and Urbanism and the Articulation of the Boundary.]

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    8. Jones, Ellen, and June Williamson. Retrofitting Suburbia: Urban Design Solutions for Redesigning Suburbs. Updated ed. Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley, 2011.

    [Retrofitting Suburbia is another book that documents the progression of New Urbanism through urban design by illustrating it with graphs, data and charts. Rather than just discussing New Urbanism and urban planning, this book looks into how we can retrofit current cities to be more efficient and sustainable. It looks at the past 50 years of reproduction and massive sprawl and addresses the fact that we need to be retrofitting sprawl into sustainable places. The text is a guidebook for urban designers, and planners that illustrates how existing suburban developments can be redesigned into more urban and sustainable places.]

    9. Katz, Peter, Vincent Joseph Scully, and Todd W. Bressi. The New Urbanism: Toward an Architecture of Community. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1994.

    [The book The New Urbanism helps readers to understand the positive and negative issues that arise when focusing on the somewhat new trend of New Urbanism. It addresses issues such as declining cities, rebuilding, affordability and traffic congestion. Though much controversy follows these new communi-ty developments, this book lets us see the positives of integrating housing, shops, workplaces and parks into a tight and close-knit community. Affordability and ease of transportation are also major factors in the discussion of designing within these communities. The book includes multiple case studies ranging from Florida to Maryland and across the country in California. Each is different but still possesses the same qualities all focused on human comfort and connection.]

    10. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Economic Statistics. Infoplease Online Encyclopedia, Almanac, Atlas, and more (accessed November 24, 2012).

    11. Scranton, Philip B. Philadelphias Industrial History: A Context and Overview. WORKSHOP OF THE WORLDPHILADELPHIA. (accessed November 24, 2012).

    12. Transportation - The 2012 Statistical Abstract - U.S. Census Bureau. Census Bureau. (accessed November 24, 2012).

    13. Vine Street Expressway (I-676 and US 30). Philadelphia Area Roads, Crossings and Exits. (accessed November 24, 2012).

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    site analysis

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    site analysis

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    philadelphia recreation

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    philadelphia parks

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    program selection

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    program selection

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    soccer field can fit lacrosse,field hockey,


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    _snapshots of abstract massing models

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    _perspective of the interior dance studios with bike path in background

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    _perspective looking towards the East at the soccer field

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    complete view

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    ct pl


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    looking west

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    street level

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    viaduct entry

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    [FINAL PG.I] Throughout the last eight months, I have explored many different design topics, many differ-ent issues, and have truly created a strong thesis project. My goals at the beginning of the semester were to develop a strong connection through the city of Philadelphia, benefit commuters, and create a safer and easier route for pedestrian and bike travel. Last semester I struggled to combine my findings in the community with my findings online and in data. By mixing the data I collected over four months, I was able to understand what Philadelphia was lacking, and most importantly, what the community around the Vine Street Expressway wanted. As you travel from West to East on Vine Street, the scenery changes drastically. Buildings are various scales, they hold different program, and the people you see around them change from East to West. The same findings are evident from North to South, where the north is much more residen-tial and the South is almost completely commercial. How could I combine these sides of the divide to create a stronger city? Once my data collection and site analysis was complete, I could continue to explore the spe-cifics of my thesis. I wanted my intervention to be something that deeply benefitted the public and serviced all types of people of all ages. I knew that a bike path must be the focal point of the project because of its ability to carry people across the expressway and to their destination easily. By creat-ing many maps to document my early findings, I was able to add layers of information to my existing work. I spent a great deal of time looking into existing bike networks and which parts of the city could not be easily accessed because of their lack of bike lanes for travel. In addition to these exer-cises, I also used some information from the Greenworks Initiative to narrow in on my site.

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    [FINAL PG.II] Choosing the Reading Viaduct for the base for my bike connector seemed perfect. I continued to collect data in the form of simple maps and diagrams but I also started to add program pieces to my path. Soon the project developed to a much larger scale incorporating a recreational facility to service the public and surrounding schools. This would be housed below a large soccer field, which would be available to a variety of sports such as field hockey and lacrosse. By branching the elevated bike connector through my recreational facility, I created a structure that was not only for sports but a hub for spectators and performances as well. This facility and project was meant to be a well-rounded thesis that solved a problem in Philadelphia, and also proposed something very realistic and feasible. Most projects we complete in design school are far more abstract and dont get into specific little details. I was hoping that my thesis would. I feel that I was a little too heavy on my early site analysis and documentation, and not strong enough on my final details of design. I would have liked to develop a schedule and plan for the use of this facility. This would have just been an extra step to showing the feasibility of my proposal. How someone would use the facility and who would maintain the conditioned space was something I also needed to address. In the future I hope to be able to do this, as well as continue to explore some more abstract ways of incorporating light into the center of my building. There were some issues with the amount of natural light that could penetrate the building facade and light the interior spaces. Because of the expance of the soccer field, much of the underside would be dark. My goal is to research and design a way to perforate the deck and allow light shafts and shelves illuminate the facility below. There are many options for doing this and I look forward to exploring!

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