How can technology and science revolutionize and restore our public spaces—particularly those disconnected and decaying districts that remain after colossal events such as the Olympics, biennials, and world’s fairs? These immense programs have shaped many an urban core, for better or for worse, from the Chicago World’s Fair of 1893 to the 2004 Athens Olympics.
As part of the Seattle Next Fifty, the 50th anniversary of the Seattle 1962 World’s Fair Century 21 Exposition, the Howard S. Wright Design Ideas Competition for Public Space challenged global designers, architects, and urban planners to re-imagine the 9 acre Seattle Center site that was part of the larger 74-acre campus, which hosted the original 1962 fair.
Suggestions range from clearing the Seattle Center site, to enclosing the space in a curved wood lattice archway, to filling the area with an open-air labyrinth.
A six person design jury selected three finalists’ proposals that present economic, social, and sustainable creative reuse solutions: ABF (France) for their design In-Closure, a forested, interactive wall; KoningEizenberg Architecture + ARUP for Park, which suggests a meeting between stadium, landscape and building; and PRAUD for Seattle Jelly Bean, an atmospheric cloud-like balloon secured to the site that serves as a reflective mirror during the day and a projection screen at night.
For more proposal images and more information on finalists, commendations, and other entries, visit: Urban Intervention – AIA Seattle.