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Hit The Wall
CODA uses skateboard scrap to construct Party Wall for this summer's MoMA/P.S.1 Young Architects Program.
Courtesy CODA

Both monumental and delicate, the winning design for this year's MoMA/P.S.1 Young Architects Program pavilion, called Party Wall, uses a steel structure clad in woven skin of waste wood to create a shade and cooling structure for the annual Warm Up performance series. Designed by Ithaca, New York-based CODA, Party Wall is the 14th project in the Young Architects Program.


Party Wall's structure arches into the various courtyard spaces creating different zones of shade and water. Polyester bags filled with water are suspended within the structure. Small stages are placed at the base of the wall, providing a variety of spaces for programming. Ithaca-based skateboard company Comet is donating waste wood from skate boarding manufacturing, which CODA principal Caroline O'Donnell is using to create a luminous wrapper for the structure. "It's not a lacy parametric skin," O'Donnell told AN. "There are eight different kinds of skateboard forms, and each board has its own errors, which produce surprising effects."

O'Donnell studied previous winners and noted that most created a canopy for shade. "The first thing we did was a sun study," she said. "We then determined how tall a wall would need to be to provide shade. Just building another canopy wasn't interesting to us."


The wood the skateboard company uses is from sustainably managed forests in the region. The Young Architects Program has increasingly emphasized sustainability in recent years.

"The project responds to the scale of the city and cleverly repurposes waste materials,” said Pedro Gadanho, Curator in MoMA’s Department of Architecture and Design. "The way that she used local resources will be something that architects will do by necessity in the future. It's important that the Young Architects Program reflect where the profession is going."

CODA's design bested proposals by Leong Leong, Moorehead & Moorehead, TempAgency, and French 2D.

The Young Architects Program has expanded to museums in Turkey, Chile, and Italy.

Alan G. Brake