First-ever Research Studios announced


Jul 31, 2019

Starting Fall 2019, students at Tulane School of Architecture will be part of design research that tackles some of the world’s most pressing contemporary problems through architecture. The school recently selected its first-ever Research Studios that will focus on a single topic, place, or phenomenon over three to five years, delving into greater detail and complexity in each cycle. Each studio will work toward the production of scholarly outputs such as books, monographs, articles, symposia, and exhibits. Students will have the opportunity to select several of these studios during their time at Tulane.

Watch the livestream recording here of the "Research through Design: Innovative Architecture Studios to Address Global Challenges" event to launch the studios on Aug. 23.

See below for a list of the new Research Studios, the lead instructor, and short descriptions.

The Rajasthan Cities: Jaipur. A Saul A. Mintz Global Research Studio.

Fall 2019. Open to graduate students only.

Lead Instructor: Iñaki Alday, Dean and Richard Koch Chair in Architecture

This Research Studio will analyze and develop scenarios for transforming two historic cities in India, Jaipur and Ajmer in Rajasthan, acting as an independent advisor to the Rajasthan government. In exploring urban growth strategies, the work will be developed at multiple scales, from that of the building to that of the public landscape. The multidisciplinary approach will include disciplinary perspectives from sociology, economics, environmental ecology, engineering, and governmental policy, with considerations about water as the overarching framework. The studio will travel to India during the fall break.

URBANbuild15: re-evaluation, affordability, national translation.

Fall 2019-Spring 2020. Open to undergraduate and graduate students.

Lead Instructor: Byron Mouton, AIA, Director of URBANbuild, Lacey Senior Professor of Practice in Architecture

This Research Studio continues URBANbuild’s longstanding commitment to the New Orleans community to design and build infill housing, providing a transformative hands-on experience for architecture students. Issues related to the sometimes-conflicting agendas of progress, preservation, affordability, and replication are debated. URBANbuild research will endeavor to “scale up” nationally, exploring different climatic and cultural contexts and proposing a research methodology for the production of prototypes. while addressing issues of design, community involvement, and affordability.

The Future of Ports: From the Backyard to the Forefront of Ecology, Economy, and Urbanity.

Fall 2019. Open to undergraduate students only.

Lead Instructor: Margarita Jover, Associate Professor in Architecture

This Research Studio focuses on New Orleans’ Inner Harbor Navigation Canal, popularly known as the Industrial Canal, where an industrial landscape meets residential neighborhoods. A multidisciplinary team will document the adjacent properties and buildings, research comparable examples and best practices worldwide, and propose innovative design-research projects, engaging stakeholders through a compelling exhibit and public conversation about how best to utilize these neglected mixed-use spaces.

Resilience Reinforced: Architectural precast concrete systems addressing the regional water infrastructure challenges.

Fall 2019. Open to graduate students only.

Lead Instructor: Kentaro Tsubaki, AIA, Associate Dean for Academics, Favrot Associate Professor of Architecture

Through design investigations, this Research Studio examines the potential of precast concrete systems and advanced fabrication technology to address stormwater runoffs at two urban scales. At the street scale, paving and rain-garden systems will introduce students to water management infrastructure and aesthetically appealing precast paving systems. At the neighborhood scale, linear-park design will introduce students to complex water management challenges and provide opportunities to speculate on advanced precast systems as solutions.

Contemporary Architecture in Historic Contexts: The Case of Magazine Street in New Orleans.

Fall 2019. Open to undergraduate students only.

Lead Instructor: Ammar Eloueini, AIA, NCARB, Favrot V Professor of Architecture

How, as architects, can we think about the future of cities in a way that will preserve their historic character while responding to urgent social and environmental needs? This Research Studio will explore an alternative approach to issues of development in historical neighborhoods, where context is considered from geographic, cultural, political, and economic perspectives, and contemporary materials and techniques of construction are utilized. Magazine Street—an iconic pathway in New Orleans with a mix of commercial and residential structures that attracts tourists and residents alike—will serve as our study area. We will also study Magazine in comparison to other such iconic streets in the U.S. and abroad.

Stilted: Toward an Elevated Urbanism.

Spring 2020. Open to undergraduate and graduate students.

Lead Instructor: Scott Bernhard, AIA, NCARB, Jean and Saul A. Mintz Associate Professor of Architecture

As a consequence of flooding events in New Orleans, many homeowners, business owners and developers have been elevating new and existing buildings on piles. Whole neighborhoods have been raised in this way. A complex array of staircases and ramps provide access and the otherwise conventional dwellings and businesses are detached from the social and natural infrastructures of the city and the landscape. Little architectural attention appears to be given to this phenomenon, particularly at the scale of a neighborhood. This research intends to (1) develop a taxonomy of raised structures from pre-history through modernism to the present; (2) research current and best practices for the technical resolution of raised structures; and (3) create design proposals for more cohesive methods of conceiving elevated communities.

Fast/Strong/Sustainable: Exploring the Expanded Mass Timber Industry for Design in Hurricane-Prone Regions.

Spring 2020. Open to undergraduate and graduate students.

Lead Instructor: Judith Kinnard, FAIA, Harvey-Wadsworth Chair of Landscape Urbanism, Professor of Architecture

This Research Studio will expand the inquiry of mass timber research employed in the construction of tall buildings to include lower-scale and residential settings where the speed of production and assembly are of essence. Hurricanes in the Gulf South have destroyed and damaged hundreds of thousands of homes, and it is imperative that new approaches be explored for sustainable transitional and permanent housing. Prototypes that use local resources have the potential to expand the regional economy and deemphasize extraction industries.

Addis Ababa River Project. A Saul A. Mintz Global Research Studio.

Fall 2019. Open graduate students only.

Lead Instructor: Rubén García Rubio, Assistant Professor of Architecture and Urbanism

The main objective of the research studio is to design a holistic urban strategy for the city of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, through all the Akaki River tributaries - more than 50 kilometers - which cross the capital. The studio will travel to Addis Ababa and the work developed will be exhibited in the U.S. and Ethiopia.

Big Questions, Small Projects: design-build's potentials to advance community-driven ideas.

Fall 2019. Open to undergraduate and graduate students.

Lead Instructor: Emilie Taylor Welty, Favrot II Professor of Practice

How can the design process be reimagined, building capacity and agency of partners and students to address complex social and environmental challenges? This research studio extends the 14-year history of the Albert and Tina Small Center for Collaborative Design in its collaborative and transformative design work with non-profit partners across the city. The fall 2019 design-build studio will explore big questions related to trauma informed design, housing insecurity, and child development. In partnership with Hotel Hope, a home for women and children transitioning from homelessness to a more permanent living situation, the studio will respond to these issues - creating a dignified playscape for youth.

Building Preservation.

Fall 2019. Open to graduate students only.

Lead Instructor: Michael Shoriak, Adjunct Assistant Professor.

The course includes intensive study of selected historic buildings and environments in the New Orleans area and the Gulf Coast region. Local and non-local field trips provide students with exposure to a range of historic structures, their treatments from a preservation perspective and a concomitant opportunity to document historic environments and building conditions.

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Architecture, M.ARCH - Undergraduate, M.ARCH I - Graduate, M.S.ARC - Graduate, MPS - Master in Preservation Studies, MSRED - Master of Sustainable Real Estate Development
Scott BernhardKentaro TsubakiIñaki AldayByron MoutonJudith KinnardAmmar EloueiniMargarita Jover
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