MVRDV are part of the HASSELL+ team, an international design team including HASSELL, Deltares, Goudappel, Lotus Water, Hatch, Civic Edge, Idyllist and Page & Turnbull that has re-imagined a series of San Francisco Bay Area waterfront communities as vibrant, fundamentally public places for everyday use – but also vital for environmental and emergency needs. The team understands water, designing for water, living with water and the immense social potential that waterfront places offer communities when they are connected to them.
The HASSELL+ team understands water, designing for water, living with water and the immense social potential that waterfront places offer communities when they are connected to them. HASSELL, MVRDV, Deltares, Goudappel, Lotus Water, Civic Edge, Idyllist, Hatch, Page & Turnbull are drawn to Resilient by Design through an acute understanding of the social, cultural, economic and ecological potential that research-led design can unlock for waterfront communities.
In partnership with local experts - Lotus Water, Civic Edge, Page & Turnbull, Hatch and Idyllist - the team brings to this challenge a wealth of experience. Experience in researching, listening and engaging with communities, and designing, prototyping and delivering integrated solutions. The aim is to design and facilitate places and systems that improve the physical and social resilience of communities while performing vital daily and emergency functions for those communities.
Revitalised public spaces that collect and connect people and water
For the collaborative research phase of the competition, HASSELL+ re-imagined a series of waterfront communities around the San Francisco Bay Area as vibrant, fundamentally public places primed for everyday use – as well as vital hubs for disaster response and environmental innovation. This proposal adds the appeal to “engage” with communities at risk to the current common practice to “protect”, “adapt”, and ultimately “retreat" from areas endangered by the effects of climate change. This in order to develop integral design solutions that can provide both, physical resiliency for those communities and a social model which engages in decision-making and builds social resiliency.
The design team’s approach was inspired by the way the region’s communities used open spaces during both the 1906 San Francisco earthquake – one of the deadliest in US history – and the recent, devastating Northern California wildfires. HASSELL+ envisioned a network of green spaces, creeks and revived high streets that would serve as points of collection, connection and water management from the ridgeline to the shoreline and across the bay via an enhanced ferry network. Revitalized ‘connectors’ – streets and creeks – and new ‘collectors’ – responsive, adaptable open spaces – would form a network of places for everyday gathering, big events and disaster assembly. Together, they could ultimately make the Bay Area more physically and socially resilient. During the collaborative research phase, this ‘collect and connect’ concept has been tested by HASSELL+ on exemplary sites around the Bay; outlining possible spatial frameworks and a toolkit for community resiliency and activation. In the second phase, ‘collect and connect’ will be applied and elaborated by Hassell on chosen sites in South San Francisco.
Designing better waterfront cities – a range of international perspectives
Since the challenge launched last May, it’s received an outpouring of support from elected officials across all nine counties in the Bay Area. San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, President Dave Pine sees it as an opportunity to draw on the technical expertise of design teams, think creatively, and ultimately, create lasting change in the county.
The team headed by HASSELL are one of ten teams selected by Resilient by Design, modelled after the successful Rebuild by Design challenge that addressed infrastructure needs in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut following the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy. The program is tied to The Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities network, which aims to support 100 cities to build resilience for the 21st-century. MVRDV worked with the HASSELL+ team during the first phase of the project; a collaborative research stage, selecting the site and defining the approach.
- Strategy & Development
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