Unbuilt the Wall

Nogales, Arizona, United States/Mexico

By the world become more globalized, we need more connection between countries rather than separation by building walls. There is about 2000 miles of border between United States and Mexico where about 500 miles are separated by barriers. (Almost 1/4 of the border) These barriers do not bring long term solution for drug trafficking neither stop illegal immigration. The drug smugglers find another way to come to US, and immigrants find more extreme ways to pass the borders. The International Organization of Immigration reported that about 40,000 deaths toll from attempting to cross US and Mexico border from 2000. Reece Jones, professor at the University of Hawaii, suggested that the border is not effective against drug traffickers since they have resources to find another way to smuggle drugs into US. Also these barriers divide the family members in a city, have negative effect on local economy, and create long term damage for the environment.

The free market project try to bound the US and Mexico, share their resources, and create collaboration environment between two countries. If the wall is replaced with a street; the families will get reunited, companies could invest and use local and international labor force, and environmental damage would be reversed. Imagine a street with vibrant free market where innovation would flourish and both side of the border would benefit from it.

The main street between the two countries is further connected inland with series of street that form a free market village. At the main interstate roads there would be check points to monitor the imports and exports products. This way the border patrols and immigration officers would be stationed at the strategic points where circulation infrastructure between countries are located.

There would be housing, offices, schools, factories, and amenities build in free market village. This way the border is not the pathway anymore but a destination that calls for opportunity. People would immigrate to this area for job opportunity, better education, and life. There would be visitors that look for different parts and pieces inside the free market to create their own invention and bring their design into reality.

West Kowloon Cultural District Proposal

Hong Kong, China

Team Members: Pouya Goshayeshi, Ahmad Goshayeshi, Joanna Lam

The public opinion on high density urban city is wrongly related to lack of green spaces. Public believe good living environment is outside of dense urban city where this utopia reside in country side. It’s been over two decades that contemporary vertical gardens show its face in exterior and interior of the buildings using felt system, panelized living wall, or module living pods. These living green system raised questions what is the bio-diversity effect on human health in different ways. The studies show not only they have a positive effect on replenishing oxygen; also the green wall reduce urban heat island effect, provide better wall isolation that reduce energy consumption, and have positive psychological effect on people.This pavilion wants to shift public opinion and embed a new idea where community should take initiatives to create green space in our vertical urban city and open up a discussion about the effect of vertical garden in everyones life.


This pavilion is made of columns where series of linear straight pipes of bamboos are connecting two rings. These linear structures are rotated along the ring that create tree structure shape, “trunks”, where all the membranes are straight. Felt system is connect to these linear structure where plants such as Boston Ivy, different flower species, Australian Veggie, and Moss are hosted. There is a description on each trunk to how to grow and maintain each plant. There are incandescent lights around and between the rings at top that illuminate the structure at night. The composition of these plants along with natural bamboo structure create a colorful inviting feeling for the community.

Lamborghini Factory Installation Proposal

Italy, Sant’ Agata Bolognese

Team Members: Pouya Goshayeshi, Seregin Dmitry

The philosophy of performance and fluent design of Lamborghini model become an essence of this design where form finding is based on forces to increase the surface performance. The frame work is defined by series of ring in one of the installation and in other one with a continuous self-intersecting ring. The form finding was based on series of simulation where stability is the main concern. In the simulation, the surfaces are connected to the rings in different locations, and put under tensile spring engine in Catia model. After several simulation and continuous observation, the surface with the best performance was the one where at each given point on the surfaces there are two difference forces in opposite direction that cancel each other. In other word, the minimal surface stretched between the rings create most stable and strongest surface with best performance compare to other type of surfaces.

The design surfaces curvature was ideal to create a fluent design that wrap around continuous rings. In one installation, the surface is a family of Riemann minimal surfaces, in the other one is family of Mobius surface. To emphasis on the simulation frame work (boundary of forces), linear LED light is integrated into ring pipe structure. When the cars are in the motion around the roundabout, they will feel the continuity and linearity of the design.

The surfaces finishes are recyclable high-tenacity polyester that is produced in factories such as TENARA® and Spectra®. The carbon footprint of the transportation will be low because of using light weight material that can be easily fit into small containers. The installation life-cycle carbon footprint will be low because of lightweight transportation, easy installation with minimal force and people, occasional maintenance, and recyclable disposal for installation. As a result, this design reach desire performance, fluidity, and high sustainability criteria set by our design team.

Eco Marine Park

Baku, Azerbaijan

Team Members: Pouya Goshayeshi, Daniel Innocente, Steven Chaffer, Bing Zhao

Located along the Caspian Sea on Baku’s industrial coastal zone, the Marine Wetlands Ecological Park envisions a new approach to urbanism for the entire country and region. A synthesis between energy systems, natural restoration and environmentally focused urbanism. As Azerbaijan’s largest and fastest growing city, Baku has the potential to lead as symbol for the future of ecological and urban economies. Baku has seen the effects that energy and resource production can have on the natural environment and society. With the city having a deep rooted history in oil energy production and agriculture, its ability to thrive will depend highly on establishing a new infrastructure for energy use, urbanism and ecological systems.

The Caspian Sea including the Baku Bay has been devastated by the city’s dependence on oil industry, with leakages and under treated sewage disposal affecting the waters natural environment. The continued growth of Baku together with environmental concerns poses the challenge of treating infrastructure as a restorative mechanism rather than one which only accommodates growth. Taking advantage of the marine zones natural environment and restorative mechanisms with continuous treatment strategies will provide the city with a renewed and richer experience of natural space. Treatment strategies including constructed wetlands and water treatment will enable the coastline to create a sustained ecosystem that is self-regulating and maintaining. Achieving a natural balance of energy and life which will produce spaces of value for sustainable urbanism and public venues. The proposal includes an interwoven network of programs which celebrate the renewal of natural ecosystems, connected by public circulation and a variety of natural zones. Each renewed zone is articulated through public programs which brings the city to the water’s edge along the continuous experience which will be Baku’s Marine Wetlands Ecological Park.

Our proposal includes three categories of programmatic elements: biological, energy and urban, with biological elements being spaces dedicated to the understanding and maintenance of the wetlands and park ecologies. The biology category is comprised of community gardens, wetlands center, horticultural & water treatment center, botanical gardens, natural science center and aquarium. The energy category will provide and sustain energy systems with an emphasis on using renewable energy and advanced technologies for future growth. The energy components are comprised of solar parks, bio energy facilities, electric transportation and wind farms. The urban category will bring the city and region to the renewed coastal park but also place demands sustained by the biological and energy systems. The urban elements will be comprised of interwoven retail, residential, commercial, performance, swimming, public transportation, marina and parks.

The future of Baku will depend highly on sustained growth and through a balanced approach of natural and urban spaces can integrate natural living systems as mechanisms for renewed relationships with nature. The restorative capacities of wetlands and the profound effects it can have on how resources are treated will bring a new way of living to Baku. This proposal produces a vision of urbanism beyond economic, social and efficiency by introducing and making visible the positive effects of nature on anthropocentric environments.

Venice University Island

Poveglia Island, Venice, Italy

Team Members: Pouya Goshayeshi, Daniel Innocente, Arianna Loris, Lisa Goldsmith

The Venice lagoon stands as a marsh abundant in ecological diversity and an intricate interplay of natural systems working together, evolving to adapt with ever changing circumstances. A natural richness which attracted many people to its multiple islands. As far back as 400 A.D, the Venice lagoon was a place prosperity, refuge and discovery for people seeking a new way of life and a new beginning. The first settlers arrived in Venice as populations from nearby cities fled invasions from the north. Over time Venice became home to many who only sought to escape invaders but also looked for a way to prosper. The lagoon was haven for fisherman and merchants who could strived to posses independence and power.

The rich ecosystem, the engineered response to survival and the historic cultural fabric makes for some of the most intricate exchanges of multiplicity. These dynamics of life and culture have produced one of the world’s most beloved cities. A city where life and a way of living is continuously under threat by nature and time. This adversarial character of the Venice lagoon inspired us to re-establish the Island of Poveglia as a living system of interdisciplinary knowledge and integration with its natural surroundings. University Island is to become an embodiment of its past together with a vision of an engineered ecology, where Architecture is defined by history, systems of exchange and space. Poveglia is to become a city of its own, a synthesis of social, natural and engineered forces working together to become a major icon for living in the lagoon. The emergent character of each space in relation to adjacent spaces, transforms the spatial qualities between each building. Every path is differentiated by the contrast and melting of unique functions within buildings and the envelope of every building is a reaction to this dynamic. The building pods bring students, faculty and visitors into each space through a reveal which opens gradually to establish tangencies with the landscape. These transitions between inside and outside enable the movement of wind, light, heat and circulation to exist in symbiosis. The design of Poveglias new  campus, University Island is an embodiment of the complexity of the lagoon. Providing the students, visitors and inhabitants of Venice with a new way of living and expanding their lifestyles throughout the islands.

Hutong Revitalization Proposal: X-craft

Xuanxi North, Beijing, China

Team Members: Pouya Goshayeshi, Bing Zhao, Yueming Zhao, Steven Chaffer, Seregin Dmitry

X-craft project is meant to revitalize Hutong culture by considering todays’ needs and preserving culture and architectural heritage. After analyzing the circulation, typology and the site context, a series of intertwine programs that complement each other were proposed for this project where public programs such as retail and restaurant is located along the street, private program at the center of the blocks, and series of activity center including cultural, art, and gallery in main intersection and at specific locations.

This project is challenging to preserve Hutong street mass and create transparency at the same time to work with required program by introducing a facade that is made of bricks that could rotate and create openings that is only visible to user from specific location and perspective angle. The sidewalks are using natural pattern that is made of identical roof shingle and grass in-between where it sustain the Hutong environment and reduce the urban heat island effect. The roof are renovated to traditional Hutong roof with breaks in the mass where it connects the people to Hutong history.

Ryde Hub Precinct Proposal

Top Ryde City, Sydney, Australia

Team Members: Pouya Goshayeshi, Daniel Innocente, Lisa Goldsmith

Located on the crest of a ridge-line running northeast and southwest adjacent to the Ryde town centre, is home to re-envisioned Ryde Civic Centre. The site is situated 12 kilometers from downtown Sydney centered at the borderline between the Top Ryde shopping center and the West Ryde neighborhood. The new Civic Centre envisions a synthesis of nature, technology and community. Through the use of living systems, renewable systems and hybrid activities, this vision for the City of Ryde blurs the boundaries between technology, nature and the urban fabric. Inspired by the Austronesian vernacular Architecture and islands that surround Australia, the integration of environmentally driven responses to performance and nature defined the approach. Proposed as a series of geological like formations, the highest point sits on the south end of the site, at the intersection of Blaxland Rd. and Devlin St. Our design proposal begins with a direct response to the density, scale and connectivity to the surrounding neighborhood. The site is situated along a major thoroughfare, between single family residential and large scale commercial developments. This tension between low and high, neighborhood and shopping, prompted a design strategy which would blend the two contrasting sides of the city. The west part of the site behaves like an ecosystem, a park and a resting zone for the residents of Top Ryde, while the east part of the site rises up to meet the commercial development. This landscaped strategy blends into the ground, blurring the boundary between building and ground. Each mound is separated by an inner passage, taking visitors through the building from one side of the site to the next and providing a mountain like view from the east neighborhood. Our design approach synthesizes and celebrates the diversity of activity, with the ability to accommodate a multiplicity of needs for its inhabitants.