l i g h t : s p a c e

LIGHT : SPACE | Activating Residual Urban Environments

m.arch thesis_uc berkeley

Urban Infrastructural projects are often conceived at the regional scale, resulting in seemingly inconsequential remnant spaces at a local scale. These ground-level residual pieces of the city often become ambiguous, criminogenic spaces that are left under-planned and unused. This thesis seeks to develop a responsive environment that energizes a deadened and dangerous urban condition.

By establishing an adaptable lightweight structural framework outfitted with a network of solar cells, LEDs and sensors, civic potential is deployed through new programs in these vestigial spaces. In this system the technology functions beyond ‘performance’ to create an ethereal atmosphere that also benefits the community through reactive lighting, information transmission, and energy distribution. Calibrated to optimize solar exposure during the day, the structure stores the energy for community uses and includes a responsive lighting system that interacts with pedestrians.

These vibrant new collective spaces address community needs and public safety while remaining energy self sufficient. As a local test site, a mile long stretch of park will be proposed under the BART overpass on Martin Luther King Jr Way in Oakland. The proposed strategy strives to convert the site from its current condition as a stunted neighborhood center into an active urban seam.

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