View Post

Forensic Architecture

In A Sense of Place, 12. SOP 2.0 by Lulu

I have traveled the world many times. I’ve gone to China, Japan, Africa and Australia, just to name a few. I have seen glimpses of each and I did not have to board an airplane once. Often times I find myself dropping the little yellow man from Google Maps someplace in the world. As I speed through the unknown streets …

View Post

Japanese Metabolism

In A Sense of Place, 9. Placelessness by Lulu

Imagine the city you live in could grow instantly whenever the demand was needed. The built environment is designed to adapt. Landmarks could suddenly appear but disappear just as quickly. Your house is assembled and plugged into a metal and concrete trunk within a few days. Instead of your home being called an apartment you know it as the capsule. …

View Post


In A Sense of Place, 8. The Vernacular Landscape by Lulu

When my sister and I would go to the playground we would always stop at the kiosk that stood at the corner of the park. I would usually buy a popsicle with my pocket money. When I go home to visit and pass it, I usually swing by and get a small treat. It stands at an angle close to …

View Post

The Suburban Formula

In A Sense of Place, 7. Sprawl and New Urbanism by Lulu

The suburban cookie cutter homes that appeared in post-war America follow a formula. They consisted or consist of a rectilinear lot placed on a pseudo romantic winding road. They have a front lawn with no other landscaping and most notably a garage that takes up a third of the house. Similar to the house itself, suburbs as a whole follow …

View Post

Dead Malls and Ghost Cities

In 6. Shock of the New, Uncategorized by Lulu

I love modern architecture, at least some of the pioneers and canonized figures and buildings. I love the ideas, experimentation and boldness. From Philip Johnson’s Glass House to Mies Van Der Rohe’s ‘modern temple’ at the Illinois Institute of Technology. The seriousness is quite poetic and can be somewhat humorous. For instance Le Corbusier and his ‘machine for living’ Villa Savoye …

View Post

Imagined Rome

In A Sense of Place, 5. Visions of Utopia by Lulu

Cities are sites for experimenting with grand visions. Chandigarh by Le Corbusier, Brasilia by Oscar Niemeyer and of course Robert Moses and his highways are all examples of top down urban planning. Even cities that feel settled and unchangeable have once been subject to great visions of utopia. In 1584 Pope Sixtus V began to execute his great vision of …

View Post

The Orbiters

In A Sense of Place, 4. The Social Life of Places by Lulu

My room has three large windows facing the street, one of which leads onto the fire escape. It is one of my roommates and my great pleasures to sit on the windowsill or on the fire escape when weather permits. We are invisible as life passes by us five floors below. I observe the street daily sometimes for extended periods …

View Post

A Map Made of Faces

In A Sense of Place, 3. City Form and Orientation by Lulu

Two years ago I spent part of my summer in London. I barely knew the city so a lot of my time was spent walking around and feeling happily disoriented. For one of the projects I was working on I decided to go to Hackney Wick, a post-industrial neighborhood in East London that is undergoing gentrification. The first time I …

View Post

Smart Cities: What is the Spirit of a Place if Everything Runs on Data?

In A Sense of Place, 2. The Spirit of Place by Lulu

Put simply, a smart city is the use of information and communication technology (ICT) and Internet of Things (IoT) to control the urban environment and all of its infrastructure.The internet of things is a term used to describe ‘smart devices.’ IoT describe objects (eg. cars, buildings, street lights) that have been hooked up with sensors. This complex network is able …

View Post

Horizontal Daydreaming

In A Sense of Place, 1. The Experience of Place by Lulu

Like Gaston Bachelard wrote, “the house shelters daydreaming, the house protects the dreamer, the house allows one to dream in peace.” Bachelard speaks of the attic as a place where “…all our thoughts are clear…” The loss of the attic and the creation of a purely horizontal space can promote daydreaming as long as there are a few nooks one …