WRITINGS / INTERVIEWS / LECTURES

PUCPR DORMITORY

Ponce, Puerto Rico / 2012



Located in Puerto Rico, this 130 bed dormitory is based on the idea of an implied outer shell, which is an open form that partially encloses itself with delaminated razor-edge surfaces. In this application, the implied outer shell model produces exterior spaces that belong to the city as much as to the building. The interstitial spaces have their own ground separate from the city and are protected from sun and rain by overhanging surfaces.

Interior surfaces are articulated with pleats and a lemon-lime sheen to create a surprising verticality and depth-effect from the street. The extreme difference between the metric, repetitive space of the dormitory with its human-scaled apertures, and the shimmering, cavernous interstitial spaces creates a sense of the unfamiliar within the familiar.

The tower is set on a new ground, to serve as a space for student life. Like a bird sitting in a nest, the building mass is undercut and loosely nestled into this new ground rather than extruding from it or otherwise fusing with it.

Client: PUCPR, Ponce
Type: 130 Bed Dormitory and Vertical Garden
Size: 8,000 m2
Structural: Matthew Melnyk, P.E.