ARCH 793B: Architecture Directed Design Research Gallery: Form Follows Performance

Strategic Stratification

At what is now 1st Street Bridge, Los Angles River is a divider between two major districts – Arts District and Boyle Heights. It is a divider because its artificially cemented riverbed is often minimally filled with water, but still barred off from public access. The 1st Street Bridge is a weak connector between the two districts that overlooks the LA River…

But what if the bridge integrates the LA River? What if it was more than an infrastructure for getting from point A to point B, but an experience in and of itself on the river? What if this “bridge” were a new landscape of pathways that are 3-Dimensional, refilling the artificial trench in a way that creates multiple layers of experience from top to bottom?

In the topic of form follows performance, this project is about using “strategic stratification” in form as a means to generate activity, so that the once empty riverbed may perform as a new space of interaction for uniting – rather than dividing – people and nature.