Kathy Velikov + Jonathan Rule


Historically, the modernist city was conceived as a place that could achieve efficiency and maintain order through acts of separation: city from countryside, housing from manufacturing, people from vehicles, and so on. Yet at the same time, visions such as Broadacre City (Wright), Arcosanti (Soleri), and Agricultural City (Kurokawa), have proposed alternatives to this method of making city though visions for urban developments and buildings intertwined with the layers that the modernist city intended to separate. These alternative propositions championed a juxtaposition of the domestic with agriculture through new forms and organizations for living.

Now, in contemporary Detroit—as well as worldwide—separations once made by cities, and by architecture itself, are once again being questioned, challenged, and reconceived through paradigms of adaptation, resilience, circularity, and biological models. Working across sites in Detroit’s Eastern Market, the Constructing Entanglements studio researches and develops architecture propositions that combine, intertwine, hybridize, and crossbreed housing with food production and its interrelated matters of water, energy, and other species. The studio aims to move beyond known machinic and managerial frameworks related to food systems, and instead tries to cultivate relationships and social practices of collective living among humans and other biotic and animal species. The studio explores hybrid tectonic and spatial arrangements with the aim of developing new prototypes for living with others in Detroit.

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Student Work

Margaret Cochrane, Valeria de Jongh, Maksim Drapey – “Party Animals”

‘Party Animals’ explores the intersection between co-housing, permaculture, and a diversity of community players’ needs.
The massing for the project is based on decentralized co-housing. This model allowed us to accomodate dwellings for humans, a variety of gardening typologies, and dwellings for animals in clusters gathered around steel and glass winter garden structures which serve as central vertical circulation. These vertical circulation towers offer communal places in which residents can intermingle, tend to plants, and let their pets spend time outside their units during the colder months.

Emmanuel Cofie, Lorie Lonchamp, Keerti Nair – “Farm+House”

Farm+House seeks to redefine the relationship
between food and community in areas of economic distress where access to fresh and healthy food is limited. The project is envisioned as a duality of housing tied into a vertical farm which functions as a co-operative – where the farmers are afforded subsidized housing in the development.
The vertical farm serves as an optimal solution to maximize yield within the urban setting. Aligned with Gratiot Avenue to increase visibility, the street-level of the farms serve as marketspaces for produce, learning centres, community kitchens, a museum and a number of other public functions.

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