Commendation Serjeant Award
Ecological research & Macro Algae monitoring facility, North Arsenale, Venice
Part 2 Project 2011
De Montfort University, UK
The project is in reaction to recent pressures facing the Venetian Lagoon, specifically focusing on the increasing threat of invasive algae growth and the rising issues regarding the welfare of the lagoon, due to the nearing completion of the Lagoons MOSE flood gates.
Situated in the derelict naval warehouses at the North of Arsenale which face out onto the Lagoon, the project proposes a group of laboratories and structures that will monitor ,analyse and understand algae growth and the welfare of the lagoon, whilst collecting and harvesting the existing crop for Bio-fuel to give back to the city.
Within the Warehouses, laboratory structures will stand detached from the historic fabric, with the ground floor also consisting of exhibition facilities to link it in with the Venice Biennale on the South of the Arsenale, providing educational and lecturing facilities to inform the public and locals on how to safeguard their Lagoon. Walkways will project themselves out into the lagoon, attaching at points to the surrounding historical defensive wall formed around the Arsenale. These will connect to three laboratory towers, which will form a new layer of defence, that will be representative of its aim to protect Venice and its lagoon against its new problems.
These structures will stand alive, living symbiotically within their environment, by using the lagoons invasive species to drive the sustainability of the project whilst also creating a site specific architecture. The local living materials will create an interactive building which will evolve throughout the year reflecting the changing state of the lagoon and the Venetian climate.