Sunday, May 31, 2009

Final Presentation for Thesis Proposal May 31, 2009


Good job on your analysis of the issues. He now has an understanding of the town.
-include a sense of what the community wants & ideas of how you might go about it
Programmatically this has to be something that you feel strongly about because it won’t get built exactly as you conceive it.
Challenge is going to be focus-big site-connections to the other side of the river.

Eric Nelson
Show the edge of the river. Is it controlled?
Show the flatness also when showing the mountain contour
Likes the image with the White Mountain in the distance

Commends your very good analysis
Intrigued by a post industrial aspect of mill towns. How do you propose a landscape intervention to restore the site? This is a huge site = massive intervention. How do you gauge your level of success on a site of this scale – how do you criticize it?

Eric Nelson
This is a huge site, but there is definitely a center-the old mill.
I would look at the adaptive reuse of the structure as an important piece of the town.
Doesn’t buy the program of the AMC. This is an industrial town, not a dense urban area.
Could see a school or community college for the town as a means of educating the generation that lost their jobs when the mill closed.
Personally doesn’t see the smoke stack as the icon, but the fantastic masses of the building.
Maybe you could keep the machinery and add to it in a light, more delicate way.

Mike W.
The Tate Modern kept the industrial feel of the building and put a museum in it. Check it out.

There are two towns here Berlin A & Berlin B
What would be a signature project that would speak to what can happen in the future as other phases happen over the next 50 years.
Capture, analyze and diagram the industry of the town so that if you’re going to do a park it references the history of the industry.
Mountains in the background remind him of the Architecture of Crete. Valley Architecture that honored its position and the relationship to the mountains.

Precedent was interesting that you give something back to the town by way of energy &/or restoration

What happens when mills close? You loose your $, friends, sense of ritual, smell. This is a landscape that is going to change from masculine to feminine. You don’t have to talk about it or think about it, you just do it. If you change it, it will take on a feminine roll of hosting, being articulate, etc. Watch movie “Roger & Me”.
The most important question is what comes after industry in an emotional sense? How do you accommodate the change to feminine?

Is this going to be a building, landscape plan, series of bridges, park? What is the scale of your project? Is it 120 acres or 120 square feet?

Even if it is a building, landscape is still very important.

Tschumi’s large project or is it a small piece?

This is going to be a town based on the scale. It is too large for a park. You could either dive into or assume an urban plan, with a town square.

Eric Nelson
The factory was something that took natural resources from the area. What if that gets reversed and the plant feeds the town.

Richard Russo “Empire Falls”

This is going to be a change in character, it is going to become a serving rather than taking.

The scale of the factory needs to be evaluated for whatever program you choose. May not be right for a town square or park.

Selectively pick one opportunity, but talk about the 5-10-15 that you’ve come up with. You don’t have to do something with all of them.

Scale of the AMC Ed Center program gets lost on this site.

Be careful about jobs=jobs. The types of careers here are not the same. One does not replace the other. What is the nature of the work? If you were not to do a physical intervention, what would be the principles of your thesis? What is the emotional intervention?

Thursday, May 28, 2009


Along the Androscoggin River in Berlin, New Hampshire the International Paper Mill sits silent as the sun sinks below the ridge of the Presidential Mountains in the distance. The large concrete tower stands in stark contrast to the pale pink and orange sky. Once a bustling, industrious part of town, the mill and the abandoned site it rests upon is now only a reminder of what used to be. Remnants of the mills former buildings and smoke stacks can be seen in the decaying foundations that cast long shadows across the rubble and dirt. Sounds of the mill machinery buzzing, loggers yelling across the yard to one another, truck engines roaring are silent now. Only the hushed sound of the Androscoggin as it makes its way slowly past the site can be heard. As darkness falls, the site seems to be waiting...quietly...patiently....anticipating the change that is to come. A transformation that will shape the future of Berlin forever.
Situated on the Androscoggin River, the town of Berlin New Hampshire became the center of the pulp and papermaking industry in New England in the mid 1800’s. In 1853 the construction of the St. Lawrence and Atlantic Railroad line through the town, coupled with the availability of the new turbine technology, made the Androscoggin River Valley an ideal place in which to locate pulp and papermaking mills. By the early twentieth century Berlin had become the most prominent pulp and papermaking in New Hampshire and had been recognized in the papermaking industry nationally.

The mill had been in use, sold and bought several times after World War II. It was purchased by Fraser Paper (formerly The Brown Company) in 2001, but in March 2006, the mill was closed permanently . Over 250 employees, mostly residents of the town of Berlin were subsequently laid off. In October of 2006 the North American Dismantling Corporation bought the mill and the site. All but one of the smoke stacks was demolished, along with the buildings and portions of the mill that accompanied them.

The 121 acre site now sits abandoned, waiting to be redeveloped.

I want to propose a program that would:
-revitalize the town by bringing tourists to Berlin
-provide jobs for local residents
-recycle as much of the old mill as possible (keeping the smoke tower intact, as it is an icon of the town)
-implement systems within the program that would directly benefit the town/surrounding environment (this is going back to the "givining back to nature" theme)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Monday, May 25, 2009


Case Studies

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Monday, May 18, 2009

Still working on the grid and its relevance to the site....

Paper Mill Model

(see below for scaled site model)

Further Investigation

Investigating Relationships of Space

Views to Site

Views to Town

Site in Relation to Green Space

Elements to save....