Roosevelt Carousel

Roosevelt Island, New York City, NY
Oct 2018 (1 week)
Individual Work
Prepared for 2019 City of Dreams Pavilion Competition

Eye Level Perspective_sm.jpg

This project, Roosevelt Carousel, aims to examine temporary folly structure as an architectural and urban design project that celebrates an arcing attitude towards social and environmental sustainability in the contexts of New York urban center along the water edge.

The Roosevelt Carousal

As it suggests, Roosevelt Carousel provides a platform for visitors and local residents to meet and to play. Considering the site’s unique history and location, this design derives from a single and fundamental idea: it needs to be both divided into two – 1) open spaces for free-play and open lectures, and 2) enclosed spaces that exhibit the unparalleled history of Roosevelt island – and unified as one single entity.

Recycled fishing net or equivalent mesh wires harvested through local and adjacent New England farms will be introduced as the base material for this project. Its geometry shaped by a simple stretch by two planes defines the edge between public space and exhibition space. As a result, visitors move uninterrupted within the structure in a circular form, while exhibition space, which sits at the center, becomes the centrality of such circulation as is in a carousel.

Along the exterior surface an array of open spaces accommodates day-to- day basis as well as event use of open and public activities. It is a pavilion to escape the sun during weekdays; it is also a children’s playroom on the weekends. It accommodates small concerts as well as art shows; it can also be used for public speaking and dancing platforms.

The central exhibition space features (to be determined) pre-2010 Tram car – an iconographic symbol and a perfect temporary magnetic attractor for Roosevelt island – that is currently sitting underneath the motorway garage platform unattended and unapproachable. The tram, built in 1976 and featured in the 2006 “Spider-Man” movie, made about 115 daily trips between the island and the East Side, carrying two million riders a year before retirement.


Fishing Net

According to Humanscale Founder and CEO Robert King, fishing nets comprise approximately 10% of the plastic pollution in the ocean today. In fact, there is an emerging industry across from furniture design to product design that embrace the recycle process of fishing net. Such designs include but not limited to:

- Smart Ocean chair by Humanscale, an inventive adaption of Diffrient Smart chair that incorporates almost 2 lbs. of recycled fishing net material (NetPlus).

- AHI by Bureo, a 27 inch performance cruiser skateboard made from recycled fishing nets.

This project would propose a collaboration with Bureo and NetPlus to harvest fishing net for the purpose of this structure, then recycled into NetPlus materials for new uses.

Roosevelt Retired Tram Cable Car

Currently locates underneath Roosevelt Motorway Garage entry platform.

Cradle to Cradle Upcycled Farm Steel and Wood

Natural collagen-based glues, and VOC-free linseed oil for topcoats and sealant. All byproducts from the making process is re-used, whether as compost, premium cat litter, industrial alcohol or biofuel, thus closing the loop on a “no-waste” lifecycle of all inputs and outputs.

(Budget: TBD - depending upon approval of using retired Tram cable car)