Student Work

Structures 3 Systems Investigation

The presence of a structural problem in the design project is evidence of integration. 

Taken concurrently with ARH 410 Studio 7, in this course structural intuition is cultivated through physical model making to evaluate and propose structural systems for design studio projects. The relationship between structural behaviors and building geometry is studied through load tests and load path diagrams to establish design criteria for structural systems.

Architects collaborate with structural engineers in the design of buildings. For this collaboration to be successful it is important for architects to cultivate an intuitive sense of how building structures behave. We will develop structural intuition through load testing physical models and making careful observations. Structural design this semester will aspire towards a close integration with architecture. A clear architectural design intent and an open-mindedness for inventive structural systems are the necessary ingredients for a meaningful integration. When structural design is approached as an architectural design opportunity, rather than as a restriction on design freedom, compelling and rigorous design proposals will follow. Grounded in a critique of prevalent contemporary structural systems, we will explore and experiment with creating conditional rules for structural behaviors to invent new structural systems.

Our goal this semester is to integrate the architectural design intent with the structural solution. The structural proposal will be uniquely adapted to the architectural studio project. In other words, the structural proposal will not be one that is generic. To this end, we will actively seek to create a structural problem. The presence of a structural problem in your project is a good litmus test for the integration. 

Constraints make better design. For this reason, the competing design criteria between architecture and structure is welcomed in this class. The negotiation and compromise that must happen to reconcile the competing priorities is what we refer to as the integration between architecture and structure, our goal.

Course Learning Outcome