I'm just back from a trip to the Notre Dame School of Architecture to review the work of this year's crop of fifth-year students. Once again, like last year, a group consisting of fifth-year students plus professors Samir Younes and Douglas Duany made a study trip to Las Catalinas in late August and they will be working on a Las Catalinas projects for their studio work all this term.
The projects they are working on this year are the Playa Dantita area and an extension of the main beach town area at Playa Danta. The work up to now has been on land planning - later they will move on to work on architecture of specific buildings.
In Dantita I think they've done a fine job of laying out a series of hillside lots houses that will enjoy great views and beautiful streetscapes. Over at the Playa Danta beach town area they are working on a substantial park, and have made good progress on street network that has some real logic to it. It includes a long route that goes all the way from one end of beach town to the other staying nearly flat at an elevation of 17 to 20 meters. This route serves as a primary pedestrian route and an interesting organizing feature of the town.
Below you'll find some pictures from the student's visit to Las Catalinas and some shots I snapped of their work as it was pinned up for our review. What you see here is all very preliminary. The other jurors and I gave some amount of redirection to the groups during the review, but in general we found the work very impressive. I'm very eager to see how the work progresses through the term!
The plazas and places throughout Las Catalinas have something to offer for any event and occasion, from meeting spaces to meditation platforms, from dining with the family to sports pavilions and many more.
The process for drawing a street in a pedestrian town is very different from in a town built around cars. Traveling on foot or on a bike presents an entirely different set of challenges, possibilities, and considerations than for travel in a car, and as a result the materials, size, shape, and even ...
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