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"Re-placing the horizon"​

Urban design, installation // Berlin DE, Paris FR, Tokyo JP // Entry for Central Glass Competition, “Public Space with Glass“ // 2000

This project deals with of the transformation of the public and private spheres under the influence of emerging forms of communication. Our proposal addresses the growing discrepancy between public and private, and their modalities of inhabitation. We understand the sensation of crossing the street as an exemplary experience of public participation in the urban fabric, and the road junction as the nexus of this experiential field. We propose a new element in the city fabric at such crossing points, in order to redefine the hierarchy and increase interaction between different activities, groups of people and forms of transport.

The proposal is not specific to one place, but is a responsive model. Over time, we imagine a matrix of such places at comparable or contrasting crossing points in many different cities relaying images, information and atmospheres between each other. They respond not only to their environment, but becoming heterotopias within their contexts, simultaneously place and no-place. The crossing responds to its environment to control fluctuating vehicular and pedestrian traffic or accommodate festivals, spontaneous events or sudden changes in the weather whilst situating the crossing point within a global network.

Directly over the crossing, a field of glass structures are hung, Within which a lighting and image projection system for the crossing is incorported, using electronic paper. Moving images appear on the clouds, visible from beneath. They relay information and create particular atmospheres in the space below, establishing zones whose extents and priorities can be constantly redefined.
A new pattern of street markings is proposed beneath the field of clouds, like that of a gymnasium, where fields and zones relating to different games are superimposed on top of one another. Painted lines using the language and logic of street markingsGlazed lighting elements set into the floor as in an airport runway. Steel, hinged elements which rise out of the road surface forming speed bumps, pavement edges etc.

Organisers: Central Glass Company ®, Japan