Urbanism After Geography: The Network is Context
Clare Lyster

MONU #20 Geographical Urbanism,Spring 2014, pp: 108-113

On Demand Urbanism: Learning from Amazon
Clare Lyster

The Petropolis of Tomorrow. Eds., Neeraj Bhatia and Mary Casper. [Barcelona: ACTAR / Architecture at Rice #47, 2013], pp: 406-423

Infrastructural Cartography: Drawing the Space of Flows
Clare Lyster

Landscapes of Mobility. Eds., Arjit Sen and Jennifer Johung. [London: Ashgate 2013], pp: 241-254

Future of Mobility: Greening the Airport
Clare Lyster

PLACES: Design Observer. Link available here.

The article provides an in-depth analysis of airport landscapes with a view to exploring alternative approaches to sustainable design at large infrastructural sites.

Credits: Flight Patterns by Aaron Koblin. Published with kind permission of Aaron Koblin Studio.
Barcode Park
22 acre Public Park in Chicago, 2013

Team: Clare Lyster with Juan Garduno
Client: Little Village Environmental Justice Organization

The barcode is an information interface that receives and stores the data necessary to identify a particular product. It’s a simple framework for hosting information while its graphic clarity (black and white lines of varying thickness) is an icon of post Fordist production.The project borrows the operational and compositional logic of the barcode for the plan of a public park on a post-Industrial site in Chicago. Previously the location of an asphalt plant, the land was cleaned for public use by the EPA beginning in 2008 and later purchased by the Chicago Park District for a neighborhood park.

The barcode graphic is interpreted in 2 directions on the site and defines bars for recreation, agriculture, play and ecological program. Each bar is coded by a different material and color. In this way the graphic motif is a formal organizational device at the scale of the site as well as a means to generate different atmospheres locally within each bar. The resulting diversity of spaces responds to the many community organizations and non-for-profits that have a stake in the implementation of the plan. A large walkway –Paseo—runs along the length of the site through the bars facilitating a connection between the neighborhoods on either side of the park.

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Void as Necessary
Six in One, Ribbon Gallery, UIC SoA, Nov 9 2012-January 31 2013

Team: Clare Lyster with Joanna Nika

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Field Projections
Six in One, UIC SoA, Media Installation, Nov 2012-January 2013

Team: Kelly Bair, David Brown, Stewart Hicks, Andrew Moddrell, Clare Lyster (with Joanna Nika), Allison Newmeyer and Xavier Vendrell.

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Credits: Photos by Matt Messner, UIC
The Post-Fordist Logistical Subject
Clare Lyster

Cabinet, Issue 47, Fall 2012: pp 55-62

Pole Fields
Public Landscape in Chicago, 2012

Team: Clare Lyster with Joanna Nika
Client: Lawndale Development Corporation

Pole Fields is a public landscape proposal that uses recycled telephone poles to infill vacant lots in an impoverished and de-industrialized neighborhood on the south-west side of Chicago. The poles are painted a series of bright colors and installed as forest-fields with small program voids (clearings) carved out for public occupation. LED strip lighting is routed into the poles surrounding the voids as well as on street edges and triggered by passers-by.

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Kid Condenser
Design Proposal for the re-use of Prentice Women’s Hospital, Chicago

Team: Clare Lyster with Joanna Nika
Client: AIA Chicago / Chicago Architecture Foundation

In its 33 years as a maternity hospital (1975-2008), Prentice Women’s Hospital (Bertrand Goldberg Associates) delivered upwards of 400,000 babies. Preserving its service to the city’s youngest demographic, the project proposes to develop the old hospital as a mixed-use space for children --a kid condenser-- comprising a K-6 elementary school; a children’s library; a theatre; a dance room; a children’s bookstore and a café, which are all located in the plinth of the building, while a new home for the Chicago Children’s Museum is located in the 7 story cylindrical structure. A museum garden occupies a vacant lot opposite the building.

Design proposal for an urban freight network in Chicago, 2012

Team: Clare Lyster with Joanna Nika

A speculative proposal for downtown Chicago that re-uses an old vacated subterranean tunnel network as a new freight distribution system in the city. Extended to Fed Ex and UPS distribution centers, packages for businesses and residences are sent through the tunnels for pick up (and drop off) at newly proposed freight stations located at ½ mile intervals. The proposal illustrates how global and local networks revitalize urban form in the contemporary city.

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(Re)claiming Landscape
Clare Lyster

Chicago Architect, June /July Issue 2012: pp 26-27

Learning from FedEx: Strategies for the City
Clare Lyster

Journal of Landscape Architecture, Issue 13, Spring 2012: pp 54-60

Hub and Spoke Library Network
Design Project for a new library network in Chicago, 2012

Team: Clare Lyster with Patrick Finn and Joanna Nika

The hub and spoke model used by large airline carriers to transport passengers is deployed as a planning model for a library network. Rather than have multiple branch libraries all carrying the same books a super book hub is designed to host all the books in a municipal library system. This is supported by a series of transportation mechanisms from train to water taxis to book robots that transfer books form the hub to small scale book receptor stations for pick up by users who order books online. By bundling itself with other municipal systems, the network attempts to propose a more efficient and resilient service that enhances rather than limits public access.
Systemscapes 3d
Primitives, UIC SoA, Installation, Dec 9th 2011-Jan 9th 2012

Team: Clare Lyster with Joanna Nika and Megan Funk

This 12" x 12" x 12" acrylic model is a 3d representation of cargo flights arriving and departing the FedEx Superhub at Memphis International Airport, Tennessee over a 24 hour period in February 2010. It is constructed from an earlier drawing by myself of the same data, developed as a 3d Rhino model and sliced to fabricate 96 acrylic sheets that are laser cut and clamped together to make the final product.

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Diagramming Distribution Flow
Show PODs, Chicago Arts District, Installation, June 15- Sept 21 2011

Team: Clare Lyster with Patrick Finn and Frank Gossage

A series of 6' x 6' super maps of familiar corporate networks (Fed Ex, YouTube, Netflix, Amazon.com, Ryan Air) are installed in a Chicago gallery that comprises of 6 storefronts (show pods). The maps expose the complex operations of the emerging networks of contemporary city rendering visible the processes that serve post-Fordist culture. Maps produced by Clare Lyster and Patrick Finn as well as by students at UIC School of Architecture, Leslie Pepple and Maya Nash (youtube) and Megan Mc Closkey (Netflix). Installation design by Clare Lyster and Patrick Finn. Installation by Frank Gossage. Photographs by Nathan Kirkman.

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Housing Urbanism
Clare Lyster and Judith K. De Jong

Journal of Architecture Education, Vol. 65: 1. October 2011: pp 7-12

Urban ORD: New Ecologies of Airline Flow
Clare Lyster

Journal of Architecture Education. 64:2. March 2011: pp 100-111

The essay contemplates airline infrastructure as a vehicle for new forms of urban organization framed through a series of alternative plans that conceive Chicago’s O’Hare Airport as a new public ecology at the global, regional and metropolitan scale. The essay includes work from a graduate research studio conducted by Clare Lyster at the UIC SoA (2008). Winner of the 2010/11 JAE Award for Design Scholarship.

Drop Off City
Design proposal for an urban drop off center in Chicago, 2010

Team: Clare Lyster with Patrick Finn

Design proposal for a new typology of freight station where users can pick up and drop off products for a whole host of shipping and service networks (from FedEx to Zip Car). In addition, the project includes offices and public facilities that piggy-back on the freight infrastructure available. The project explores how emerging networks (car-sharing to local agriculture to global shipping) catalyze urban development and the new formal configurations therein. For example, the primary public space in the project is a combinatory interior, part drop off area, part playground, part hang out space and highlights how public program can operate in tandem with infrastructural flows.

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Envisioning the Bloomingdale: 5 Concepts
Edited by Clare Lyster with Michael Wilkinson and Laura Bowe.
Graphic Design by Rebekka Kuhn Communications.
Produced with funding from Design Trust for Public Space and the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in Fine Arts.

Chicago: Chicago Architecture Club/University of Chicago Press. August 2009

Envisioning the Bloomingdale is a design manual that explores the creative reuse of a post-industrial landscape by positing a series of concepts that articulate how the design of obsolete infrastructure generates new opportunities for the city. The publication comprises critical discussion of a 2007 exhibition directed by the Chicago Architectural Club of 26 design proposals that explore the re-appropriation of a 2.75 mile abandoned elevated freight track on the north side of Chicago known as the Bloomingdale Line.

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O’Hare Super Strip
Planning Proposal for O’Hare Airport

Team: Clare Lyster with Carlyn So, Patrick Finn and Juan Garduno

An expansion proposal for O’Hare Airport optimizes the current $15 billion O’Hare Modernization Program (OMP). A sub-surface multi-programmed strip stretches across the 3 ½ mile width of the airfield connecting the existing airport terminals on the east side of the airfield with a proposed new terminal on the western edge. Large program clusters aggregate around the terminals and are linked by the CTA blue line, which, with the highway is extended across the site. Also included is a high speed rail connection, a downtown shuttle, metropolitan train service and parking for 25,000 cars. The proposal not only expands O’Hare as a global transportation facility but conceives the airport as a multi-programmed urban landscape that caters to 75 million travelers as well as a local population who now come to the airport to shop, play and work. Why go to the airport just to take a plane? Exhibited in Burnham 2.0: A Patchwork Plan for Chicago, The Chicago History Museum. (CAC with Chicago Institute of Humanities. Nov. 2008)

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Housing Urbanism: 4 Scenarios
Research exploring new housing in Chicago, 2008-09

Team: Clare Lyster, Judith K. De Jong, Mclain Clutter, Jillian Lindner and students from UIC School of Architecture (Arch 554: Housing the City, 2008)

Contemporary discussions of urbanism require contemplation of where and how people live in the city. By 2030, 60% of the world’s population – 4.9 billion people - will live in cities, making housing fundamental to a larger discussion of the metropolis. Yet architecture has abdicated its role when it comes to housing as a critical planning mechanism in favor of one-off buildings that have little or no dialogue with the environmental complexities or opportunities of their macro urban field. Rather than pursue housing solely through the design of individual units or buildings, the design of housing must extend beyond the property line to encompass larger metropolitan and regional systems; architects and educators must frame housing as a broader infrastructural proposal.

“Housing Urbanism”, is a research project that pursues the design of housing from the perspective of contemporary topics in infrastructure, ecology and urbanism through a series of theoretical essays and interviews from experts in the field of housing and urbanism along with design proposals produced in Architecture 554: Housing the City, a graduate design studio conducted at the UIC School of Architecture in 2008. At the urban scale, Housing Urbanism uses exemplary projects from this studio to articulate the coexistence and feedback among housing design and other urban and regional systems such as public space, transportation infrastructure and recreational amenities. At the architectural scale, it explains how these macro-planning decisions inform practical and alternative unit typologies that address contemporary domestic lifestyles such as work/live, intergenerational communities and aging populations.

We are extremely grateful for contributions by Dana Cuff, Sarah Whiting, Jonathon Solomon and Moshe Safdie and for funding from the UIC College of Art and Architecture Research Prize in 2008 and 2009.

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Electric Walkway
Design proposal for the reuse of the Bloomingdale Line in Chicago, 2008

Team: Clare Lyster with Carlyn So
Client: Chicago Architecture Club

The project explores the re-use of an abandoned 2.5 mile elevated freight-line in Chicago as a new transportation artery that links O’Hare Airport with the North Side of the city. A series of high-speed walkways (travelators) occupy the upper-side of the embankment connecting to other transportation corridors in the city—the river, the highway, the city train system. The travelators, typically interior circulation systems are brought outside conceiving the city as a continuum of artificial urban surfaces and serves to extend the airport beyond the boundary of O’Hare into the city.

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Stand, Patch, Matt
Design proposal for Europan 09, 2007

Team: Clare Lyster

A 20 acre public park and 87 housing units for seniors comprises a sequence of public, semi public and private landscapes that address the infrastructural and social needs of a neighborhood park with a residential complex for seniors. A thick 2 story matt structure occupies the site, with voids carved out to form 81 private patios (patches). These give the visual and personal identity to the units since each one hosts a unique landscape finish (from wallpaper to agriculture) selected by residents.

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