The Design process continues with an updated underlay, new ideas, and slight adjustments that provide a fresh outlook on the same core mission.
This first image represents the updated underlay. The changes are subtle, but make a large impact. The biggest difference is the placement and size of the yoga studio that exists as a core element of my design area and greatly impacts the community growth and health of the body and mind. As a group we decided to rotate the building and extend its length to fit the entire span of the area reaching the walkways on either side.
After the changes were made to the underlay, I began designing the heart of the site and giving it life. I continued with the idea of indoor - outdoor flooring pattern that extends the usage and size of the yoga studio by creating a consistent flow of flooring materials. I then drew a grid for my garden plots in the community garden area. At this point, the garden plots were 3 ft. by 5 ft. with 3 ft. walking space between them. I began placing them throughout the site, following the grid, and leaving room for open space designed for sitting and eating within the garden plots and also room for teaching opportunities.
After determining these garden plot locations and open spaces, the left over space conveniently created a triangular shape perfect for the open playground space. My goal is to leave this space mostly open for kids to freely run around and exercise in a safe location, but I also placed some play equipment like swings and a climbing structure for kids to enjoy. I kept the flooring concrete consistent through my entire site except for this play area. In this area I changed the flooring to rubber material that’s safe for kids to play around on and squishy under their feet. I played around with different designs for this material to keep it fun and exciting.
Another interesting aspect of this play area is that it’s sunken into the ground by means of two concrete stairs. This design was intended to create a feeling of safety and enclosure for the kids and families while simultaneously providing benches for adults to sit on. The main critique I received on this design move is that I forgot to accommodate ADA requirements and made an area inaccessible for handicap people. For those reasons and more, the sunken playground design changed quickly after this design iteration.
My next step was to follow our groups plant list and place trees throughout my site that provided natural shade in some areas like the courtyard spaces around the garden plots, without producing too heavy of an overhead cover that blocked sunlight from the garden plots. I also placed trees around the outdoor yoga floor in order to create a permeable border that makes the space feel enclosed and safe without blocking it off from its surroundings completely. I placed the largest sycamore tree cover around the playground in order to create a natural overhead cover to protect kids and adults from the full force of the sun but still keeping them outside.
The following series of 3 images represent the next step in my design process of changing the grid. My goal was to accommodate a wider change of people by expanding the walkway between the garden plots that allows for more people to pass by and creates more room for people kneeling down to garden and experience the area.
After updating the grid I placed garden plots around the space and indicated the space of the planter and the 1-foot distance around the planter intended for people to use and still have space to walk around them.
Next, I indicated where the overhead trellis would be and indicated where the opening spaces would be located and their intended use.
This last image represents the most updated version of my design. I included the interior design of the yoga studio that as remained consistent from its previous version. I simplified the exterior wooden flooring and gave it a defined edge to help define the space. A major change I made was to change the flooring of the entire community garden space to a more firm version of the rubber play floor in order to create a versatile, engaging look to the space while also providing a more comfortable flooring alternative to concrete for people to kneel on when they garden. I did however keep the same concrete flooring on the walkways around the garden area and between the garden space and the play area in order to create consistency.
I also listened to my previous critiques and raised my play space to be consistent with the level of the garden space. I simplified to play space design and took out the play equipment and made a series of multi-colored rubber material dips into the floor to create the same safe feeling with a captivating floor material that's safe and easy to play on.
My design still has a long way to go but my steady flow of critiques and alterations has created a series of designs that show my process and subtle design improvements. All of these iterations have begun to create a dialogue of design I am excited to continue developing.