Title page for ETD etd-04242002-020927

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Iorillo, Anthony Wayne
URN etd-04242002-020927
Title Gathering: a study of public space through an inhabitable bridge in Southwest Washington, D.C.
Degree Master of Architecture
Department Architecture
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Piedmont-Palladino, Susan C. Committee Chair
Holt, Jaan Committee Member
Myer, Don Committee Member
  • mixed use
  • inhabitable bridge
Date of Defense 1998-06-19
Availability unrestricted
This study builds on the National Capital Planning Commission’s (NCPC) 50 year Master Plan for Washington D.C. It focuses on several of the NCPC’s five key goals; to build on the legacy of the historic L’Enfant and McMillan plans, unify the city, with the Capitol as its center, use new buildings to stimulate economic development, and integrate the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers to the city’s public life.

This site and project has a historical tradition. A pedestrian bridge was proposed to connect SouthWest D.C. to Haines Point with a new aquarium, which was eventually located in Baltimore, anchoring the Haines Point side. This proposal was never realized.

Integral to this project is the development of the masterplan for SouthWest D.C. It proposes reinforcing the existing city grid, while developing small plazas along the water’s edge. A major plaza is located at the intersection of the bridge and the city. It is the masterplan and orientation of the bridge that make it a viable development of the NCPC’s masterplan.

The project proposes an inhabitable bridge continuing the grid of Washington across the channel. Commercial shops and offices juxtapose views north to the city’s skyline. Housing units float ontop of the bridge creating a vibrant daily cycle of activity. Public walkways and plazas provide vistas, places to gather, meet and reflect. It is the combination of functions that make the bridge a viable attraction.

Finally, the intersection of public and private space on the bridge creates vibrant city life. This bridge contributes to the rich texture of Washington.

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