A complete renovation of a four story townhouse in the west village neighborhood of New York City. The parlor and second floor levels were mildly reconfirmed retaining the original greek revival fenestration, while the basement and third floors were designed as a minimal response to the existing structure. Extensive structural work was done to open up the basement and third floor master bathroom. Aaron Schump served as project manager and designer while at SPaN.
The new photography studio/gallery was designed to be a flexible series of spaces that acted as shooting locations. The gallery was created through a surgical removal of a third of the second floor plate. The two story volume contains the gallery below with the office perched above. The studio is directly behind with a higher ceiling volume and an adjustable lighting system. The finishes and details were crafted to maintain their tectonic clarity. The project was designed in collaboration with BoxLab.
Center for Constructed Thought
An investigation of memory as an act of creation, the project confronted issues of preservation, time, and urban perception in Amman, Jordan. On the site sits the long abandoned home of first Prime Minister of Jordan. While retaining the family home the project moves between the layers of the site in an attempt to draw attention and power form the now demolished Diwan, where official state business had once occurred. Programmatically, the center is a research and exhibition center focused on experimental translation of ideas into the built realm.
A complete renovation of a 10th story loft the Tribeca neighborhood of New York City. Extensive glazing on three facades made for a design challenge. A bar of walnut housing the kitchen and service areas organizes the plan. Bedrooms were pushed to the south and west, leaving the north-west corner free for entreating and unobstructed views of the Hudson river. Aaron Schump served as project manager at SPaN overseeing the entire project from design to construction administration.
Urbanism of Negotiations
Interventions for the Urban Village
The urban village is a radical and controversial urban condition prevalent in southern China. It is radical due to the extreme levels of density and diversity. It is controversial because of the political situation behind them. In Shenzhen, urban villages make up only ten percent of the developed land while fifty percent of the population lives within them. Urban villages are usually the first residence for migrant workers that enter the metropolis seeking employment, typically in factories. This constantly changing inhabitant makes for a diverse community. The controversy comes from the fact that the villagers actually own the buildings and the land, an anomaly in China where the state leases all land to developers. This unusual situation has given the villagers unequalled development power, which has been heavily criticized for creating havens of illegal activity.
Being that the urban villages house the majority of the migrant population they are a vital component of the city. Some villages have sold their land to the state, allowing the land to be redeveloped in the methods of modern Chinese city. These new constructions are too expensive to support the migrant worker of the village, displacing the hands that allow the city to function.
Urbanistically, the urban village is also an anomaly. Most development in the last thirty years has lacked any urban consideration. From the danwei to recent mega-blocks, they act as islands in rivers of traffic. They connect to each other through the automobile, totally negating the presence of the pedestrian. The urban village is the only place where there is street life in the megalopolis.
For these reasons, the urban village must exist, but in an improved form. One that takes in the necessities of the inhabitants but also preserves the urban quality of life that they currently posses.
The Napa Residence is a multi-structure home overlooking the city of Napa, California. The home employs various sustainable strategies, including active and passive solar heating and cooling, green roofs, and ample day lighting. Aaron Schump served as project architect while at Marmol Radzinier + Associates in Los Angeles. He was fully engaged in the complete design process; schematics, consultant coordination, and construction documentation.