vrijdag 24 februari 2012


Grant Square revisited: design of a flexible hybrid in gentrifying Crown Heights

Brooklyn’s neighborhoods are in constant change. Crown Heights is no exception as it is subject to gentrification. Next in the wave is Grant Square, a triangular leftover from the intersection of two grids with different orientations. Although the square was once one of the most prestigious spots in Brooklyn, it is nowadays up for a revision. The design of an adjacent hybrid building can play an active role in the transformation of the neighborhood since the building has no exclusive program. The combination of two different types of spaces -open and closed- creates opportunities for alternative social and urban dynamics. Its flexibility is not conceived as characterless floors:  architecturally defined spaces can host various programs, able to adapt to various needs as gentrification continues. From community center, school, library, theater, and offices to micro-convention, art and exhibition center. Flexibility remains possible within each compartment, without letting one function obstruct another, on the contrary: intensifying the contrast will give the building its appeal.

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