South Bronx, NYC

FERRY TERMINAL + 

FOOD INCUBATOR 

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Can architecture express precarity? 

Can we have equal access to green and blue space?
Can we build communities economically and sustainably?

A deliberately massive form is elevated dramatically to create an unmistakable sensation of precarity. It seeks to physically manifest our contemporary experience, setting up a dramatic dichotomy to create visceral charge, opposition and imbalance in the viewer.

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01. Day time rendering illustrating the public space in the underbelly, where a fresh food market is taking place on the platform, design with resiliency and sea level rise in mind. 

02. Quick sketch on site of the Manhattan skyline passed the adjacent buildings and Rikers Island. Below are a series of photographs taken on site that inspired and informed the design. 

03. Section illustrating the structural system to allow for the levitating volume, including a series of trusses, a concrete core and underground counterweight. 

Lifting the structure is also a strategy to extend the existing waterfront park so vital in this area of the South Bronx. It offers a welcome gesture to encourage residents and visitors to interact with the water which was previously proximate but not accessible. A reconfiguration of the water’s edge amplifies the site’s tranquil location and creates access to the banks of the East River, making it a pivotal part of the public experience.

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4. Site plan showing the proposal's relationship to the adjacent park, neighborhood and the revised water's edge. 

5. Exploded axonometric illustrates the layered structural design of envelope, three truss types, concrete slabs, concrete core, and counterweight. This strategy was developed with structural engineer input from consultants and Professor Kyoung Sun Moon  at the Yale School of Architecture. 

6. The orientation of the trusses and the variation of the custom designed facade elements are calibrated to maximize natural daylight, ventilation and views. 

This institution will provide additional public green and blue spaces in extending the existing park and creating access to the East River. The barge and ferry will reduce local truck traffic which are causing high rates of asthma to local residents. 

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During the summer months an open air market and outdoor performances will fill in the space beneath the levitating volume.To address local environmental and public health concerns, a floating barge delivers fresh produce every morning from the nearby Hunts Point Wholesale Market, instead of relying on trucks. This is one of a series of environmental and ecological strategies that prepare the site and the community for an unpredictable future.

The additional income from the event space on the mezzanine floor will allow the food incubator to focus on improving the lives of local residents. 

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This project is ecologically resilient

the floating barge delivers food every morning directly from the nearby Hunters Point Wholesale Market instead of relying on delivery trucks; 

the terraced ground plane allows for changing tides and sea level rise; 

there is road as well as water access through the new ferry terminal. 

 

This project is financially resilient

targeting the program to enable and enhance local lives, the event space will generate additional revenue for the non-profit to serve its mission in providing fresh food, training, education, and rentable commercial kitchens for start-ups.

 

This project is culturally resilient

the design draws from existing built environments in the neigborhood and caters specifically to the needs of its host community by addressing their concerns. One can start a business at the food incubator, gain access to fresh groceries at the markets, and be better able to commute with the new ferry access. 

7. Collages envision the experience of the building from the inside and outside. 

8. The mezzanine floor provides for an event space with the East River and the Manhattan skyline as the backdrop. 

9. The waiting room and ferry terminal amenities are located beneath the stairs on the ground level, incorporated into the vertical core to enhance a sense of levitation. 

10. The food incubator can be found on the top floor, consisting of ten commercial kitchens, library, and co-working space. It is connected to the mezzanine floor via the grand staircase in the atrium. 

11. Sectional perspective illustrates the various programs and uses in this project, from ferry terminal, through food market, to food incubator. 

12. Night rendering imagines the cultural events and performances that will take place at night in the underbelly. 

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MENGLAN LI

Sketch

Section