The vessel and the interstitial space
Proposal: The site is located in Chicago’s South Side- Washington Park neighborhood. Throughout history, the area suffered from informal sociopolitical boundaries imposed by the University of Chicago, located on the threshold of Hyde Park and Washington Park. A very thorough investigation of both neighborhoods revealed that the university attempted at revitalization of Washington Park, a low income community, by implementing an arts incubator on the corner of East Garfield Boulevard and South Prairie Avenue in 2008. By doing so, University of Chicago closed a grocery store, which provided for a very large radius around it, now creating a food desert in an already impoverished area. The focus of the Symbiotic IDEAhaus is to perform as a vessel and introduce low-threshold peripheral activities, which are key in bringing out bonding social capital. The vessel is placed across the street from the existing arts incubator building and programmed according to the needs of the site. The vessel takes the form of a community center with a grocery store on the first floor and an urban farm- focused learning space on the second level. By extending its armature through Prairie Avenue back to the arts incubator it creates a shading device for the existing building and transforms the street into an interstitial space. An event is created.