02-29-16

2016 COLDSCAPES//Adapt Competition Winners

adapt comp

On behalf of The Center for Outdoor Living Design (COLD) and the esteemed competition jury, we are pleased to announce the winners and honorable mentions selected for this year’s COLDSCAPES//Adapt Competition! The competition sought submissions that creatively respond to the challenges posed by volatile weather conditions in winter cities.

The three winning entries and six honorable mentions were selected by a panel of jurors from the United States and Canada, representing multiple disciplines, including architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning.

Winners:
1st Place:
Climate Canopy | Thomas Hinterholzer – Innsbruck, Austria

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This project operates within the notions of comfort and energy. It proposes individual energy autonomy and takes a speculative approach in order to link urban energy networks with cold-cliamte outdoor activity. The anticipated technological assets are hydrogen and graphene. Hydrogen is the most efficient lifting gas with a lifting capacity of 1.2kg/m³. Its energy content is 3 times higher than fuel oil or natural gas and it can be produced efficiently and stored safely with new graphene materials. One atom thick graphene sheets are 95% transparent and 200 times stronger than steel. Developed canopies harvest renewable electricity from hydrogen, which can be used for the existing buildings. Various configurations of the canopy are used not only to produce electricity, but to overcome local uncomfortable climatic conditions in order to attain more possibilities for outdoor activity. Because the canopy structures are integrated within the existing built environment they work on the scale of a parcel or a block. It will bring the energy generation into a dialogue with outdoor comfort. This ambitious endeavor has the potential to change the energy household and urban activity of a whole city.

2nd Place:
Threshold | Catherine Joseph – Auburn, Maine

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Click to view larger.THRESHOLD_3

Freeze/Thaw cycles in the Northeast are inevitable. With these micro-scale processes come ideal conditions for the subgrade build-up of ice lenses that displace soil and fracture rock through a process called “ice heaving”. This process is notorious for demolishing roads and cracking building foundations. Portland, Maine serves as a representative of urban areas that endure widely variable winter conditions. The physics behind frost heaves is predictable. By leveraging the anticipation of the formation of ice lenses, THRESHOLD is a series of independent processes activated by the cyclic build-up of snow and ice that is comes with the freeze and thaw cycles of Maine winters. Facades expand and retract according to the snow build-up, increasing the volume of the air-gap insulation. Walkways warm as the frost heaves activate piezoelectric panels that power underground heating coils. The vertical forces caused by the ice lenses can also be tailored to artistic endeavors – underground organs play the sounds of friction and temperature. Water forced to the surface is directed to ice pools, where ice sculptures are created and encouraged by the upward thrust of the freeze/thaw cycles. In each instance, it is the threshold between frozen and unfrozen that triggers the adaptive urban features.

3rd Place:
The Eddy | Tiffany Chen and Matthew Enos – Minneapolis, Minnesotawinter_render

final diagram

Click to view larger. 

Winter is isolating. It severs links between individuals and communities. Minneapolis is accustomed to this. The Stone Arch Bridge in Minneapolis serves as a popular link between neighborhoods, and facilitates encounters. However these opportunities are lost during the extreme Minnesota winter, when few people regularly cross the bridge, due to brutal wind chills. The Eddy acts as respite from winter, not removal. The principal aspect of the design is a series of louvred railing systems. Louvres on the northern face of the bridge close or open, depending on season, to block the bittern winds from the Mississippi below. Thus, they create a calmer, more amenable environment for winter users. The illuminated bridge acts as a beacon in the darkest point of the year. Minimal structural supports modify the rhythm the louvres create, while ‘eddies’ punctuate the length of the bridge. Three minor eddies provide integrated semi-sheltered seating, while the large, main eddy provides a screened space with integrated seating and observation areas.  The eddy establishes the bridge as a winter destination and experience just as much as it is during summer.

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