This was my final paper for HIAA0850: Modern Architecture. Our prompt was to pick an architect, building type, singular building, building material, or building technique. I chose the Class of 1945 Library at Phillips Exeter. As an Exeter student, I had known that the library was architecturally significant. I was glad that I had the opportunity to learn why it was significant in HIAA85.
Louis Kahn’s Exeter Library: A Reinterpretation of the Ideal Reading Space
Louis Kahn’s Exeter Library (1969-1971) masterfully upends the traditional layout of libraries. At the time, most well-regarded libraries encircled a single, grand, high-ceilinged reading room with many individual floors of bookshelves (Figure 1). While the communal reading room impressed and awed the scholar by demonstrating the immense quantity of accumulated knowledge available to them, this design conflicted with Kahn’s vision of the ideal reading spot. Instead of a single, grandiose, reading room, Kahn pictured smaller, more private, and more intimate spaces next to outside windows: carrel desks. To integrate this vision into the Exeter Library, Kahn surrounded the traditional atrium and ring of bookshelves with another outer ring of carrels and tables next to large windows (Figure 1), keeping students close to the sun’s illuminating glow and books away from its damaging rays. Through this innovation and many others, Louis Kahn’s meticulous and thoughtful design of the Exeter Library earned the building the Twenty-Five Year Award from the American Institute of Architects. The Exeter Library is truly a hidden gem among Kahn’s monumental, modernist jewels.
This was my final paper for POLS0220: City Politics. Our assignment was to pick a city issue, follow newspaper articles about it over the semester, and then analyze it with our developing understanding of city politics. I chose to look at the stalled redevelopment of the site of the old Filene’s in Downtown Crossing.
Blight at the Bargain Bin: The Fight to Redevelop Boston’s Filene’s Department Store
The mayor finally put his foot down. In an open letter, he blasted the billionaire real estate developer for his comments earlier that week: “I am directing the Boston Redevelopment Authority to examine eminent domain options for the One Franklin Street site. . . This development is too important to Downtown Crossing and to the entire City of Boston to be used as a bargaining chip to improve your bottom line.” Having just been sworn in for an unprecedented fifth term as Mayor of Boston, Thomas Michael Menino came out swinging. Continue reading POLS22 Final Paper: Filene’s Redevelopment
This was my final paper for GEOL1330: Global Environmental Remote Sensing, where I used ASTER thermal infrared data to quantify the urban heat island of Providence, RI.
Providence’s Urban Heat Island: An Analysis with ASTER and Thermal Truthing
Understanding the urban heat island is critical for public health officials, urban planners and policymakers as they shape the future of cities. In this study, thermal infrared ASTER data is used to characterize the nature of the urban heat island in Providence, Rhode Island and how it relates to vegetation coverage. Temperatures in the downtown area on a 22°C August night are found to be approximately 2°C warmer than nearby suburban areas, and 3°C warmer than the closest rural areas. Temperatures are found to be inversely correlated with vegetation coverage as calculated using NDVI. Historical air temperatures are used to ground-truth the thermal data. These values are within the 1.5°C range of precision for the advanced AST_08 product, which takes surface emissivity into account, in eight of ten scenes. The AST_04 product, which does not take surface emissivity into account, severely underestimated air temperature in all cases. Continue reading GEOL133 Final Paper: Providence’s Urban Heat Island