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Document Type

Open Access

Degree Program

Architecture

Degree Type

Master of Architecture (M.Arch.)

Year Degree Awarded

2012

Month Degree Awarded

May

Keywords

urban farming, micro architecture, movable architecture, community centered design

Abstract

Shifts in economics, demographics, and lifestyle in America have lead to changes in this country's urban landscape. Rural and urban populations have migrated toward the suburbs and concentrated metro areas, leaving holes in the urban fabric of small and midsized cities. Often these empty spaces become drivers of blight, crime, and discouragement in the community.

The goal of the Grow Pods Project is to transform the negative of vacant urban lots into an opportunity for improving health, building community, and encouraging positive growth.

As a tool for integrating the food system directly into the urban context, this project addresses the need for innovative solutions to the complex issues of city land use. Grow Pods aim to help communities redirect a trajectory of decline toward a future that is focused on the health and wellbeing of the urban environment and the people who live in it. Transformation and transportability are intrinsic features of the design, in acknowledgement of the necessity for any component of a contemporary city in flux to be dynamic enough to reinvent itself within its evolving context.

The Grow Pod project is focused on the South End Neighborhood of Springfield, MA, a city whose population and industrial base has decreased since much of its infrastructure was designed. Located in the fertile Connecticut River Valley, it is also in a region with a rich agricultural history.

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Advisor(s) or Committee Chair

Krupczynski, Joseph
Lugosch, Kathleen