BJM 01 - 20 - 2010

Life on the Water My studio hometown project is centered around the development of Goshen Indiana's canal area. For this reason I believed Venice would have some great influences on my design ideas, this was certainly the case. Upon our arrival in Venice one of the first things I noticed was the large number of wooden risers in the streets. We were unable to figure out what they were on our own but Maria our guide was able to enlighten us. The risers are Venice's way of combating the occasional extreme high tides. Every so often the tide rises up out of the canals and all of Venice is swimming. The risers are their way of creating a dry walkway along their main streets. What could render a city entirely useless has been overcome by a simple remedy. I would like to put commercial venues along portions of Goshen's canal way. Outdoor seating along the canal for dining establishments would be ideal. The only issue with canal edge seating would be the seasonal changes in the water depth. During the flood season the water levels are quite high and would easily drown out canal edge seating. My design is a stepped concrete patio space that goes down to the average bank level of the canal. This would allow for seating close to the water's edge throughout most of the year. When the seasonal floods occur a wooden deck could be extended to allow for a more intimate interaction with the high water levels. Diners would be able to dine on the deck with the water surging below them.

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