News: American studio Höweler + Yoon Architecture has won the Audi Urban Future Award 2012 with a concept to combine individual and public transport in the region between Boston and Washington nicknamed BosWash (+ slideshow).
As one of four firms invited by automotive company Audi to explore how cities will function in the future, the architects have imagined a controlled transport infrastructure that stretches across the BosWash region to connect the suburbs with the cities, serving a population of 53 million people.
Eric Höweler and J. Meejin Yoon explain how the suburbs were constructed around the "outdated" American Dream of "the single-family home, with a front lawn and two-car garage." They describe how within the "infrastructural leftovers of this now outdated dream" lies a possibility to create "alternate paths, different trajectories or new cultural dreams".
In their proposals, all forms of transport would be connected to a single artery, following the 450-mile route of the existing Interstate 95 motorway.
The award was judged and presented in Istanbul, as part of the Istanbul Design Biennial 2012.
The text that follows is from Audi:
The Audi Urban Future Award 2012 is presented to the American architecture practice Höweler + Yoon Architecture for their proposed concept for modern urbanization in the Boston/Washington metropolitan region. With their ambitious planning and architectural idea of the "shareway" the American team of architects revolutionize commuting between places of living and work. Their basic idea is to merge individual and public transport by means of a new kind of mobility platform. This combines existing infrastructure with intelligent flows of traffic and networks. For their holistically controlled traffic system Höweler + Yoon Architecture are awarded prize money of 100,000 euros.
John Thackara, design theorist and chairman of the interdisciplinary jury, explained the decision: "The jury selected as its winner the Boswash project by the design team of Höweler + Yoon Architecture. The jury concluded that this was the most thoroughly resolved response to the competition brief, and noted that it also has the potential to be realised, at least in part, within the 2030 timeframe prescribed by the competition. The jury also noted with approval that the winning entry is based on thorough research into its social and economic context; it involves both social and technical innovation at a system-wide level; and real architectural quality is evident in its execution."
"The winning proposals are a visionary document setting out what is required for cities of the future. This city dossier will be a specific set of instructions about how to plan or remodel a metropolitan region, in order to tackle increasing density”, says Rupert Stadler, chairman of the executive board of AUDI AG.
The Audi Urban Future Award is intended to make a contribution to learning how to understand more about cities of the future. Because the question "in which form will individual mobility be possible?" can only be answered by the development of cities. In order to play an active part in shaping tomorrow’s world, Audi has to understand significant patterns of urban planning worldwide and their relevance for future mobility.