LOS ANGELES: The Architecture of the Four Archipelagos Speculative Project 2016
Los Angeles and its four archipelagos is a speculative project for the city of Los Angeles.
The project proposes series of walled infrastructures, demarcating different part of neighborhoods in Los Angeles, creating separated islands of cities within the cities. The wall at an urban scale acts as an instrument to limit against urbanization, which is defined as the integrated systems of communication and movement brought about by capitalism. The pervasive urbanization has modified the urban condition itself beyond recognition. The isotropic systems of infrastructure combines with the motivation of unlimited expansion has transformed the city into formless metropolis. The notion of limitlessness as a trajectory can be countered by the search for limits and precise demarcation of borders.
Los Angeles, a dispersed and horizontal city, is known for its endless plain endlessly gridded with endless streets, slashed across by endless freeways. It is a center less city, or a city with potentially infinite number of centers. Aside from the permanent features of natural geology and man-made infrastructures, Los Angeles is also bounded by the ever-changing neighborhood territories through gerrymandering, a manipulative process of drawing boundaries influenced by political biases. Using wall as a porous instrument, the project proposal will absorb and reveal the elements of permanent and temporary boundaries that define Los Angeles.
The architecture of the four archipelagos consists of Bunker Hill; a working city, Beverly Hills; a green city, Santa Monica; a leisure city, and Studio City; an entertainment city. Each neighborhoods will be framed by one mile square walls that follows the cardinal direction, juxtaposing the new urban frame with the old infinite urban grid. The walls will carry the necessary programs that are lacking in the neighborhoods, including parking lots, affordable housing, office spaces, and public gardens. The wall becomes a dialogue between the city and its boundaries.