Winning the top prize for North America in the LafargeHolcim Awards has given the project team a huge boost. The Seebaldt Pilot project by studio[Ci], It Starts at Home (IS@H) and partners across Detroit aims to incubate long-term community engagement through interventions for local energy and food production, water and waste management, and community empowerment.
After the LafargeHolcim Awards ceremony in Chicago, team representatives Constance Bodurow, Will Bright, Haibin Tan and Eric Mahoney returned with trophy in hand and winning grins on their faces. Celebrations continued at a dinner for the Board of Directors of It Starts at Home (IS@H) including (l-r): Latosha Melvin Bright (Board Lead, Fiscal Sponsorship), Will Bright (Board Treasurer), Rico Razo (Office of the Mayor of Detroit, Campaign Manager), Constance Bodurow (Board Lead, Design), Darrel West (Board President), and David Cross (Board Secretary). A community celebration is also in planning.
Main Author Constance Bodurow of studio[Ci] in Detroit explained that the prize was not only an important professional recognition, but also brought an enormous injection of enthusiasm. “We have always believed in the residents of Detroit 48204 and our design direction, but the LafargeHolcim Awards make a tremendous difference and give us new confidence and hope”, she said.
Under the name of The Seebaldt Pilot (TSP), a large group of collaborators proposes a pilot project for local energy and food production, water and waste management, and community empowerment. “Taking the pocket vacancies normally characterized as the biggest problem in Detroit, the design turns them into an opportunity to create a compelling sustainable neighborhood,” praised the jury.See more
With its large team, studio[Ci] in Detroitis tackling one of the city’s greatest challenges: In a neglected district of the city, they want to create a community based on collective empowerment that functions as sustainably as possible. The community owned and managed infrastructure will include local energy and food production, water and waste management, while also strengthening civic empowerment. “Taking the pocket vacancies normally characterized as the biggest problem in Detroit, the design turns them into an opportunity to create a compelling sustainable neighborhood,” praised the jury.
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The design proposal for a neighborhood in Detroit repositions infrastructure as a civic project, under the name of The Seebaldt Pilot (TSP). Building on longterm community engagement, the large group of collaborators proposes a pilot project for local energy and food production, water and waste management, and community empowerment. Solar photovoltaic canopies, rainwater collection, geothermal wells, and community gardens are stitched through the existing neighborhood on currently empty lots. The collectively owned and managed infrastructure is both a gathering point and a new revenue stream for additional community services and an enhanced public realm.
The jury commended the proposal’s fundamentally optimistic approach. Taking the pocket vacancies normally characterized as the biggest problem in Detroit, the design turns them into an opportunity to create a compelling sustainable neighborhood. The combination of solar and geothermal energy, rainwater collection, and community gardening is particularly powerful in a city that struggles to provide basic services at the municipal level. Physical investiture is complemented with education through training programs and investment through collective ownership and revenue sharing. Here, the infrastructure of energy and food production reinforces the infrastructure of community building. The strengths of the project in organization and planning are not yet matched by its architectural expression and the jury noted that the multifunctional umbrella roof being proposed will need to be refined as it moves into more detailed design phases.See more
Leveraging vacancy, climate and passion to form a neighborhood armature of energy avenues
Detroit’s 48204 zip code is home to 27,000 low- and moderate-income residents with promising demographics: high percentage of home ownership, college degree attainment, and employment in Health/ Education. The Team’s pro bono commitments have been vital, but Detroit is emerging from economic decline, and 48204 is hard hit by lack of resources and opportunities, especially for youth. Our Mayor focuses on neighborhood development, so TSP can be a replicable model for stabilization and sustainable growth. Hybridized Ecosystem for Infrastructure and Renewable Systems (HEIRS) generative infrastructure and renewable systems decarbonizes and makes 48204 self-sufficient. Michigan’s colder climate is ideal for solar power generation. Specified PV increases the power output 41 % for every degree Celsius drop in temperature. Bloomberg/Deutsche Bank rank Michigan 14th best for return on solar dollar.
Hybridized Net Zero Energy (HNZE) communityowned MicroGrid integrating infrastructure with public and private realms
IS@H wishes to secure, make stable, and sustainably grow their beloved 48204 neighborhood. Since 2014, IS@H and studioCi have collaborated to create a sustainable vision based on achieving NZE through a community MicroGrid with solar and geothermal energy, rainwater collection, and primary education and training opportunities. The HNZE MicroGrid is a “three legged stool” of solar, geothermal, and storage that will distribute energy from PV to strengthen and stabilize the grid. IS@H has established emerging partnerships with local university, banking, and utility sectors in support of their vision and program. Weatherization and efficiency programs will directly engage the community and link the enhanced public realm of the micro grid to the private realm of homeowners and constituents.
A new energy economy for Detroit via empowerment, co-production, and equitable development
TSP creates a new transactional public realm, generating ownership benefits for the 48204 neighborhood. TSP envisions distributive ownership and operations models, placing resources such as vacancy into a renewable cycle of collective use. Revenue sharing with DTE will fund an escrow account, which will allow the coop to add more infrastructure and beneficiaries. The community owned MicroGrid will be installed with the help of residents trained through local NGOs. Initially, several hundred under-served youth will be trained in the renewable energy economy. The long-term vision is a fully functional, cooperatively owned MicroGrid that will deliver both reduced energy and water costs and a revenue stream for community services, initiatives, and investments within an enhanced public realm.See more
Bottom-up neighborhood planning, Detroit, USA - The design proposal for a neighborhood in Detroit repositions …