Sunday, September 7, 2008

Thesis Abstract #2

With soaring gas prices, and rapid urbanization, many transit-oriented developments are planned and being built in the Washington Metropolitan Area. The Metro system has become more popular and many stations are reaching their capacity after 32 years of service. Studies have been done to identify the various needs in capital improvement. However, the architectural opportunities for station improvement remain underexplored.

This thesis intends to rethink the role of Metro stations. It considers Metro stations as more than infrastructure, but also as neighborhood centers and vital physical elements in the city. It anticipates an organic relationship between the station and the neighborhood and explores the opportunity to animate the program of the stations by reexamining the relationship between Metro stations and their urban / suburban, socio-cultural and economic context.

Existing stations with capacity-improvement needs or potential future stations will be investigated as test sites for the proposition. Precedents of railway station designs will be analyzed to compare and contrast with the existing Metro stations as part of the research.
They will lead to the exploration of the programming and design of the stations.

The goal of this thesis is to seek opportunities to create more dynamic and culturally integrated architecture of Metro stations for the national capital and thus to strengthen the urban centers as well as enhance the image of the neighborhoods in the Washington DC Metropolitan Area.

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