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Sustainable Gardening and Community Center for Bridgeport, Connecticut

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Project Statement:

This project aims to provide a sustainable option for learning and food sourcing in lower income areas.  The state of Connecticut has a very uneven economy in terms of geography. For example, Fairfield county is on the border of New York and is extremely wealthy, however Bridgeport a city located in the county is impoverished.  This project would include building a community center that is focused around sustainable living and gardening. People would be able to use the gardens to grow their own food and flowers, there would also be opportunities to learn about living more sustainably.  Living sustainable could help them learn about economical advantages and simple life tips. This space would be low impact and consist of a small building and gardens made from sustainable materials. This center would be used by the citizens of the city and community.  It could be adults, students, teenagers, and young children. The area has to have good exposure to light, enough space to support a community garden, and environmentally friendly materials that create a modern and welcoming atmosphere.  There would need to be volunteers willing to teach sustainability classes and gardening. Connecticut experiences every seasons, the building will be able to withstand the cold and snow, and during the summer humidity.  It will also be low cost to build and maintain to be truly sustainable. A community like this can help the citizens in many ways and teach children and adults a lifestyle that is achievable and beneficial to them and the environment.

What is Sustainable Gardening

Case Studies

Detroit Sustainable Community Center:

This project turned a vacant apartment complex into a sustainable community center.  There is a physical building where they are trying to reuse materials and other sustainable features to align with U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).  There is also a urban farm within the plot that has been running since 2012. The food that is produced is free for families, food pantries, churches, and businesses.  There are opportunities for children to get involved with gardening on their children’s garden, which targets certain educational benefits.

Site Analysis and Plan

The site is currently a park along the water with a lot of open space. It is in a neighborhood that also has some commercial properties near the water.

Floor Plan

3D Model

Within in my 3D model there is a wave like fence to mimic the path along the water that pre-exist in the park. There large folding glass doors which can open up the entire building to the outdoors. There is a common room, class room, small kitchen, and male and female bathrooms. The garden beds provide enough space for planting freedom for the users.

Conclusion

I choose to do a sustainable community center because I have an interest in the environment, and this is away to combine architecture and sustainability for a greater good. My goal was to create a space for the community to learn to be more sustainable and use their knowledge. While developing my project I learned what makes a successful community center, while still being environmentally friendly.

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COMMENTS: 6
  1. April 25, 2019 by Justine Fellows

    This is such an imaginative and interesting idea – I hope it can come to fruition!!

  2. April 25, 2019 by Jack.Wilcox

    Great project! Its cool that you designed a home that looks good and is still economically friendly.What was the hardest things about designing a home to make it economically friendly?

    -Jack

  3. April 26, 2019 by Victoria Garcia

    This is an amazing design! It is really cool. What materials would you plan on using for the building and garden beds?

  4. April 29, 2019 by Kirsten Mettler

    I really love this idea. I am also from Connecticut, and I completely understand about what you are saying. City gardens are so great. A lot of the time low income communities don’t have access to healthy foods and these gardens can really help with that.

  5. April 29, 2019 by Katherine Olivia Holder

    Your 3D models are awesome! I created a community center very similar to this for my project, also on the banks of a river! I would love to see what materials you chose – our structures look similar in terms of natural wood to blend into the environment and glass for lots of light, but my center takes on a more community focused approach to bring strangers together. Have you considered adding a personal touch/your inspiration for this project?

  6. April 30, 2019 by Kate Pitfield

    This looks super awesome. I think you did a great job having enough space for the garden beds without making it feel very “rural” and huge. It feels warm and welcoming (by looking at the pictures), and it looks like it would be a great place to be around. I am super impressed with this idea and the way it turned out!

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