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Monday, July 13, 2009

Re:Vision Dallas, Dallas, United States

Competition seeks to build first city block that runs off the grid
Imagine an entire city block that operates off the grid. That’s what competitors were asked to do in Re:Vision Dallas, an international design competition that seeks to transform a neglected urban block in downtown Dallas into a self-sustaining community. The competition, which drew hundreds of entries from 26 countries, resulted in three winners, from which one will be chosen for construction later this year.

The winners are: Entangled Bank by Little, based in Charlotte North Carolina; Forwarding Dallas by Atelier Data & MOOV of Lisbon Portugal; and Greenways Xero Energy by David Baker and Partners Architects with Fletcher Studio located in San Francisco California.

Little imagined a mixed-use tower that doubles as a vertical farm with glass ponds and a field for grazing livestock. In addition to providing 500 apartments, the site would house educational institutions, a slow food restaurant and an organic farming institute. The project would be powered by solar panels. Atelier Data & MOOV, imagined an 854-unit housing development modelled after a hilltown. On the hills, or rather rooftops, solar, photovoltaic and wind power will provide for 100% of the energy needs of the community. In the valleys, trees and vegetation are proposed. Cascading down the sides of buildings are public greenhouses. David Baker and Partners Architects working with Fletcher Studio has proposed the least monolithic and most sociable design of the lot. Their design integrates the block into the surrounding neighbourhood with a multi-modal transit center; a variety of "micro-retail" spaces; and an urban agriculture program.

The winners were chose by a panel of community leaders and experts that included Eric Corey Freed, Principal of organicARCHITECT; Adrian Hughes,Principal of ARUP; Nathanial Corum, an architect with Architecture for Humanity; Pliny Fisk, Director of Maximum Potential Building Systems, and Sergio Palleroni, Director and Co-founder of BaSIC Initiative at the University of Texas at Austin.

Sharon McHugh
US Correspondent
architecture NOW

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