ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN CONTEST
'REIMAGINING RED HOOK'
Brooklyn, New York City.
... Winner Proposal designed by Murcia's Architects:
CONGRATULATIONS AND THANKS FOR THIS GREAT PROJECT ...
CYCLE RED HOOK
The benefits of bicycle use as a means of transportation in the city are indisputable, from the personal health benefits, to the savings of time and money. The city also benefits through the decontamination and decongestion of its streets. The recent increases in gas prices have forced people to begin thinking of sustainable means of transportation. The bicycle is one of the most accessible solutions; however, our cities streets are not prepared for cyclists to ride safely.
The neighborhood of Red Hook is currently reinventing itself, transforming from an industrial waterfront to a place for business and living. This allows for the opportunity to intervene and create a safe haven for cyclists. Red Hooks limited connectivity as a result of the BQE both a helps and hinders a future bike network. While this lack of connectivity is responsible for less automotive traffic it also leaves cyclists and pedestrians little opportunity to enter the area. Before a network of bike lanes can be successful it is necessary to first establish clear means of connectivity to cross this barrier. The waterfront is another barrier, with only one water taxi stop for Red Hook. The plans to rehabilitate Governors Island allows for the opportunity to create a recreational bridge as well as add a new water taxi stop for the area.
It is evident that there is a lack of bike lanes in Red Hook. This increases the risk for cyclists in the area and it is not enough to only create new safe lanes for cyclists. Other elements such as info nodes, bike stations and other amenities are needed to bring bicycle awareness to the general public. Currently, Red Hook has 2 miles of bicycle lanes on its 15 miles of paved road. This study attempts to increase that number to a 9 mile network of marked bike lanes. There are two categories of bike lanes in this plan. The primary bike lanes interconnect all the primary points of access to Red Hook, as well as pass by major points of interest, like the public schools. Secondary lanes will complete the network, blanketing 65% of the roads in Red Hook with bike lanes.
The new bike network will be further supported the construction of a bike loft acting as a hub for bicycle activity in the area. Located between multiple subway lines, the loft also becomes another major access point for the area. The site selected for the bike loft is partially occupied with structure supporting the elevated subway. This allows for a unique opportunity to reutilize the structure for the new building as a means of sustainability. The program will graft itself into the bottom third of the existing structure. 1. Bike Parking. 2. Repair shop & operations office. 3. Lockers & Showers. 4. Cafe & internet lounge. This is then tied together by a ramp that circulates cyclists to roof parking. The skin of the “loft” follows the trajectory of the ramp, leaving one end of the building more permeable than the other, thus demarcating a more secure zone and a more permeable zone.
These interventions along with support from local governmental branches and private investment will allow Red Hook to reinvent itself not only as a place to live and work, but also as the most bicycle friendly area in New York.
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