The American Dream

Design Studio in partnership with Yale Architecture
@SCI-Arc taught by Mark Foster Gage w/ Melissa Shin

In Book II, Chapter III, of his Ten Book of architecture, Roman architect Vitruvius writes of the architect’s responsibility for building private structures as only a secondary pursuit and that their primary function is the design of “works for general use in public places”- best translated into contemporary parlance as ‘infrastructure.’ The project, therefore, assumes the simple counterfactual that architecture is still today, and solely, responsible for not only buildings but the design of all nation.

Looking at the specific topic of aquatic cities in the US, the project defines Barrow, Alaska, as the most controversial and strategic location for future developments.
With the climate change affecting the Arctic, in fact, the political and economic interest of all the nations facing the North Pole is exposing the weakness of today's jurisdiction of the area. New forms of colonization are unraveling, challenging the outdated idea of the gold rush in the neo-liberal capitalist world. In this, by taking accelerationist positions for the production of the architectural infrastructure, we propose massive developments in strategic positions at the border of international waters. Here, while extracting the already present natural resources of oil and gas, we create systems of cryptocurrencies mining and high-frequency trading apparatus that take advantage of the environmental conditions to create new international economies.