2010 // Solar Symbiont /
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Cleantech
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Design of a unique, industrially-zoned corridor in downtown Los Angeles elicits the strategy of building a sustainable field of solar energy housing that posits a complex ecology and sprawling cellular system with PV shells nesting on top of the existing built environment. The aim is to create a fluid and scalar roof scape where the merging of the newly proposed program and its spatial components are symbiotically connected to the overall site. The project establishes mutually beneficial relationships for a diversity of conditions that encourage for change towards cleaner energy consumption and development in urban living.
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An architectural mutualism embodies the existing industrial loft housings that serve as hosts that employ the proposed apparatus- the Solar Symbiont. The speculation is that the physical construct of Solar Symbiont would share air and surface rights with existing host buildings. Unlike billboards and cell sites, a Solar Symbiont network’s farming policies cultivates reusable energy as a form of commodity that performs more than just generate electricity, heating, and additional income for the building. With the clear notable macro environmental effect for establishing clean energy enterprises, Solar Symbiont intervention would also produce a new identity and urban destination for owners, dwellers, and visitors
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Solar Symbiont is a time-sensitive infrastructure produced and assembled locally in Downtown Los Angeles. The overall faceted and expandable geometry facilitates the demand for directional variations of the sun and builds on the potential to optimize growth. It is laid out to stretch and to latch onto its most proximate host building with capability to shift scale and proportion for the interest and demand of occupants. Solar Symbiont is constructed using layers of snap surface composites, operable PV panels, sub roofing solar heating duct patching, and a lightweight substrate canopy supported by a point-loaded suspension structural system. Integrated with additional housing pods, the Solar Symbiont system also includes public roof garden, tanning deck and lap pools.
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Site Plan / Diagrams
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The Solar Symbiont takes the mid region of Cleantech corridor as our launch pad for planning the site. The project is developed to combine think-tank offices with dwelling programs, creating a scalar entity of live/work environments. The north and south side of the corridor are designated for manufacturing plants for the entire system.
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A. Solar Symbiont sprawling roof diagram: the formation of cellular growth towards potential residential and commercial neighborhoods connecting wherever the needs might be for the desire to come clean and convert towards a more sustainable future. It is conceived to generate a new order for open public space above the Los Angeles industrial landscape.
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B. Solar field optimizer site diagram: demonstrates levels of regional solar energy saturation on the existing urban scape. It is produced to identify potential host buildings for Solar Symbiont and the shape of the optimized solar field on an immediate site.
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C. Super floor plate and new central void distribution diagram: a speculation on transforming the conventional loft building blocks from an enclosed and cave-like entity into an open network. Solar Symbiont reorganizes the internal spatial construct of the host building by inserting a new circulation core, allowing more sunlight and airflow into the building. The potential floor slab extensions could be linked horizontally to the adjacent properties, producing more opportunities for public space.
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Geometry: Solar Symbiont is designed with adaptable geometric intelligence, forming a responsive connection as an energy gathering field that is angled to the direction of the sun. The faceted envelope could also react to the irregularity of the overall urban terrain.
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Legend: a. Hard shell roof deck integrated with Rayotec solar heating ductwork, b. Mega structural roof frame / public circulation, c. New cellular housing inserts, d. Existing building / host, e. Individual photovoltaic cells, f. Structural surface network for the individual PV cells
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Project Team: Juan Azcarate, Julieta Gil, Andy Ku, Kam Ku, Kin-Tak Yu

                           

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