F&ES / SOA Professor in MOMA Exhibit Alexander Felson, assistant professor and director of the Urban Ecology and Design Laboratory at Yale, is part of an exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City that explores architectural possibilities for cities and suburbs in the aftermath of the recent foreclosure crisis. Felson was selected as a core team member to participate on the Zago Architecture Team that used Rialto, Calif., as a model for its exhibit, “Foreclosed: Rehousing the American Dream.” www.moma.org/interactives/exhibitions/2012/foreclosed/rialto For the project, the Urban Ecology and Design Laboratory proposed using suburbia along the exurban fringe as a site for testing re-wilding, which asserts that large predators can be instrumental in maintaining the structure, resilience and diversity of ecosystems by initiating top-down ecological interactions. Re-wilding would be achieved, Felson said, by employing the zoological park as a suburban amenity. In a collaborative endeavor between the developer and federal government, the government would finance habitat links to the suburb and, in return, the development would incorporate infrastructure with intensified habitat zones and productive ecosystems, providing jobs, public amenities and regional habitat resources. For a blog on the re-wilding approach of the project visit: www.moma.org/explore/inside_out/2011/12/21/foreclosed-the-role-of-the-team-in-the-design-process.
FIgure: Housing taxonomy: Combining building, landscape and technology to promote zoo-like interfaces and artificial attractors Diagram courtesy of Alexander Felson and Jacob Dugopolski.