Redevelopment options for the O Street Market site, Washington, D.C.

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

This thesis stresses the semantic aspect of the environment in an attempt to generate design alternatives for the redevelopment of the O Street Market site in Washington, D.C. The intention in presenting, as a conclusion to the study, an alternative image of the site that stands in stark contrast to that proffered by a potential developer is to stimulate the search for and discussion of additional alternatives.

The alternative image presented arises from a redefinition of the problem based on an analysis of the time cycles that affect the project and on an exploration of the message-giving potential of physical objects and configurations in relation to the social, political, economic and behavioral context of the site. Resulting from this redefinition of parameters is an object whose feasibility is founded, not in traditional economic analyses, but in stability and evolutionary potential rooted in diversity and adaptability within its context.

The bias of the writer is that the only supportable design solution for the problem will be generated in collaboration with the existing and potential residents and users. The schematic design, therefore, is presented as an object for redefinition and translation, in such an interactive forum, rather than as a solution to the problem.