Where traditional “natural” design is limited to “green-washing” or mass-produced stone units, “Unearthed” embraces a wholly new technique to bridging organic and built environments. Playing with material formula, aesthetic, and transition from land to the building, “Unearthed” is a refreshing break from modern-day street frontages. Adaptive 3D printing of rock formations seamlessly mimic its surrounds – or what was once there.
“Unearthed” blends inspiration from natural elements, integrated architecture-engineering constructability, and facade innovation. Architects, engineers, and material scientists work together to create the impossible. Using the latest software and construction technologies, “Unearthed” facades leverage ground-breaking 3D print process advancements in a familiar form.
Constructing an “Unearthed” building includes analyzing setbacks in support of zoning and building codes, detailed structural studies with metal support anchors and tiebacks in foam fill, and 3D printed covers. At its heart, the project is a new form of discovery - a multi-disciplinary departure from standard notions of nature and site design.
With man and machine working in unison, “Unearthed” creates an organic aesthetic that heralds a new wave of biomorphism. Outcroppings and superstructures “carved” from rock formations balance raw utility with an interpretation that is novel, yet at once familiar. Literally unearthed on the site, the building references the very land on which it was discovered.
With the advent of machine automation and industrial efficiency, facade design lost its artistic, hand-crafted touch. In an effort to reintroduce a sense of artistry to facade design, EDG devised a way to bring discovery and iteration to the built environment. Armed with software expertise, EDG developed the Synthesis program – striking an innovative balance between man and machine.
This computer-aided design software presents users—architects, their clients, or both—with a catalogue of shapes to serve as a launching pad. As style, color, density, pattern, and even window placement are selected, the user can see, in real time, near-limitless variations of the initial design. With the digital pull of an on-screen slide, all the elements of the building animate, allowing the user to find the perfect confluence of factors for the final design.
Parametric design optimizes the design, allowing window locations to be developed in synchronous coordination with the panel design and interiors. As the system learns from governing rule sets with inputs ranging from building codes and occupancy, location and orientation, along with dozens of other parameters – automation will increasingly perform the onerous tasks of the process, resulting in a streamlined methodology, with more consistent output.
Inevitably, the resulting freedom holds the potential to unleash creativity in a way that hasn’t been possible yet in our lifetimes. With the combination of 3D printing and concrete casting (Modern Ornamental), custom designs can be printed onsite, if desired, and on demand, which will revolutionize industry approach to facades.
Inspired by optimized trusses originating from structural engineering research, the EDG team explored methods to produce highly unique, load-efficient facades in high-rise towers. By fusing architectural design with structural engineering principles, EDG developed a new approach to creating aesthetically-dynamic façades.
Algorithmic modeling references patterns found in nature – evoking cellular leaf, webbing, and coral motifs. The resulting truss designs are simultaneously geometric and organic, structured yet unrepetitive. And importantly, the concepts are deeply appealing to the biophilic predisposition of humans.
These facades usher in a new era of exterior building design that challenges uniformity. The Optimized Truss tower propels the discipline of architecture forward, towards customized mass production that engages state-of-art design technologies and building manufacturing techniques.
In the age of autonomous cars and algorithmic transportation, cities transform from gridlocked streets into a lush paradise. The Loop NYC city ushers in an era of dedicated thoroughfares for self-driving vehicles – “micro-highway loops” repurposed from major streets. With newfound pedestrian space, inhabitants & tourists alike enjoy 24 new miles of walkable area.
With streets re-purposed for the pedestrian, Loop NYC will introduce over 200 acres of parks. In this newfound abundance of interstitial territory, these inner-city peninsulas will allow individuals and communities to connect in novel ways. Loop NYC presents a vision of a city that strengthens communities and forges new relationships between them.
Loop NYC is a new framework for civic interaction, cultural enrichment, environmental resiliency, and equitable economic growth – fueled by the advent of autonomous vehicles.
When EDG learned that the ornate 1940’s facade of 574 Fifth Avenue faced demolition, the team was inspired to preserve the ornamental design of prior eras. By designing a modern interpretation, we reinvigorated an architectural language that is gradually disappearing. Modern Ornamental is a modern method of constructing a classic building style.
Through advanced technology we are able to give the entire building that human touch missing from today’s buildings, similar to the sculptor’s influence in the work of 574 Fifth Avenue. The way 3D printing brings manufacturing back to the individual, Modern Ornamental brings design beyond architecture. The combinations are as unlimited as the people who will design these facades. With this technique, people from all walks of life can create facade and finish designs - allowing the democratization of design.
The beauty of this method of construction is that it goes beyond new buildings and can even be used to retrofit Landmarks buildings. Old building facades can be scanned, and ornamental elements reconstructed. Elements of the facade can even be digitally cataloged, so should an element require repair, the part could be removed, reprinted and cast on-site in the same day.
The Generator is an urban waterfront tower development, rising out of the ground where a former power plant stood for three-quarters of a century. Nestled amongst a cluster of industrial buildings, the tower aims to create a unique office building that meets – and greatly exceeds – 21st-century energy goals.
EDG focused on careful analysis, location, and efficient design that leverages solar, wind, and hydrological energy sources. The elevated promontory the building sits on acts as an elevated parkland which anticipates water surges and mitigates wave action, allowing for hydrological filtration and phytoremediation. The team lifted the building body and office program 210 ft. above ground in anticipation for rising sea levels and to reveal the giant helical wind turbine. The sophisticated double skin is designed for modulated fresh air, with perimeter ERVs that manage intake and exhaust air much like gills. Interior spaces are heated and cooled via a radiant in-floor and ceiling hydronic system, using energy captured by the geothermal field in the park below. Further cooling is regulated by a deep-water cooling system drawn up into the tower’s heat exchangers.
The Generator, with its multitude of sustainable energy strategies, is beyond net zero. The dynamic tower capitalizes on natural, renewable elements of air, sun, and water from all around. It maximizes views of Manhattan and Brooklyn while referencing its surrounds in its own design. Intentionally playing upon the neighboring bridges, the Generator harks upon its past while looking optimistically towards the future.
The Bowstring tower is a building design feat of material innovation and cross-disciplinary prowess. Inspired by the tensile strength found in bridge suspension cables used in structural engineering, the EDG team sought a new way to capitalize on their strength.
Applying structural engineering techniques, the tower introduces tension cords into high-rise vertical construction. Cables on all four vertices connect the topmost and bottommost concrete corners of the building.
By exploring new methods of designing and constructing large towers, EDG’s team extracted more space efficiency by maximizing floor areas, introducing a new design aesthetic, and innovating at the intersections of engineering and architecture. The proposed mixed-use residential, office, and commercial program stands as an icon in the skyline and a herald for architectural invention.