WAN Awards 2015


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Ground Inc., Somerville, United States

Thursday 08 Mar 2012


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Award Entry

Ground Inc. create rich experiences that shift over the course of a day or a season 

Ground Inc. is a design practice committed to the creation of exceptional artful and sustainable urban environments.  With designers trained in architecture, landscape architecture, and urban design, the practice is based in interdisciplinary collaboration.

The studio's designs shape space with light, pattern, and texture, creating rich experiences that shift over the course of a day or a season. They like to playfully engage natural processes to create spaces that provide a platform for social interaction as well as interaction with the natural world. Their approach promotes the three pillars of sustainability - social, economic, and environmental - while advancing a fourth pillar, the aesthetic. They believe it critically important that our complete urban environment is understood as the product of substantial design investment, and not dismissed to the periphery of consciousness as green or grey background.  Their work is bold and visible, and they aim to bring urban space, whether hard or soft, into focus.  

The submitted projects exemplify their approach at a wide range of scales.  LandWave is a shimmering metaphor of land and water that reveals the history of landmaking in Boston (2011). SuperNatural in Vancouver provocatively employs glacial erratics for traffic calming.  In the BluePrint plaza for the Los Angeles Police Department a fingerprint is enlarged to a topographic scale; the fingerprint is both a standard tool of police work and a representation of our individuality (2011).  Nourish, a proposal for June Callwood Park in Toronto offers a new typology for public space: an edible landscape uniting urban agriculture with a verdant social environment (2008). The design for the centerpiece of Sowwah Island in Abu Dhabi is a cascading carpet of unique patterned shade rooms that create a sheltered, habitable outdoor environment (invited competition 2010). Finally, Shifting Tapestry is an outdoor living room that heightens the textural complexity of natural and reclaimed materials through a shifting composition of geometry and relief (2011).



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