The waste produced in New York City travels an average of 389 miles to landfills all over the country. This urban project proposes an industrial waste-to-energy facility and university cutting off the self-isolated suburban-scale community of Seagate from the rest of Coney Island. The project gives the current residents of Seagate a choice: already threatened by rising tides, do they remain in their homes, now straddled by the arms of a new industrial reality, or rejoin the city they struggled so hard to keep at bay? The narrow industrial bars occupy the 60-foot width of every other road cutting East-West across Seagate, turning front yards into back yards and confronting the domestic space with a black wall, punctuated by apertures allowing access across bars at the ground level. Cars are no longer allowed on the ground in Seagate: parking in the industrial bars allows a completely pedestrian domestic space. As people choose to leave their homes, the vacated lots would return to an agricultural-pastoral landscape, a foil to the industry now enveloping and framing the horizon. As people move into the newly added housing and dormitories in the industrial bars, the domestic-pastoral terrain below becomes a space observed from on high, inverting the suburban social status paradigm.

With Allen Plasencia

Studio critic Peggy Deamer