Local Code | Data, Design & Cities


Local Code: Real Estates uses geospatial analysis to identify thousands of publicly owned abandoned sites in major US cities, imagining this distributed, vacant landscape as a new urban system. Using parametric design, a landscape proposal for each site is tailored to local conditions, optimizing thermal and hydrological performance to enhance the whole city’s ecology‚ and relieving burdens on existing infrastructure. Local Code‚ quantifiable effects on energy usage and storm water remediation eradicate the need for more expensive, yet invisible, sewer and electrical upgrades. In addition, the project uses citizen participation to conceive a new, more public infrastructure as well‚ a robust network of urban greenways with tangible benefits to the health and safety of every citizen.

Design Process

1) Site Identification > 2) City-Wide Analysis > 3) Site-Specific Analysis > 4) Parametric Site Design > 5) Community Engagement > 6) Design Proposals

Design Tools

GIS (Citywide analysis) > Rhino > Grasshopper (Site specific analysis) > CNC routing >

Media:  Geospatial analysis, parametric modeling, CNC routing, laser cutting and fabrication
Type: Urban design / City planning Research
Dimension: Across various cities
Budget: Research Grant  
Research Group: Prof. Nicholas De Monchaux
Proposal Location: Major US Cities with city-owned abandoned lots, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Washington DC. Case study developed for San Francisco.
Project Manager: Shivang Patwa
Project Team: Natalia Echeverri, Liz Goodman, Benjamin Golder, Sha Hwang, Sara Jensen, David Lung, Shivang Patwa, Kimiko Ryokai, Thomas Pollman, Matthew Smith, Laurie Spitler with Prof. Nicholas De Monchaux

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