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Fractal Cityscape

Type. Research

Product. Fractal Wall Installation
Date. 2014

Status. Concept Design

Project Description.

Fractal Cityscape is an installation which takes the Abu Dhabi modernist urban plan as a canvas for reflecting and speculating on form, change and growth patterns of urbanization. On the photograph, the “superblock” concept of the 1968 urban plan by John Elliot and Abdul Rahman Makhlouf is clearly illustrated; a grid network driving traffic across the island flanked by mid-rise mixed-use blocks shielding a residential core with parks, public spaces and mosques. 


The success rate of the plan is debatable, in fact the intended public spaces at the core are mostly car parks, there is little pedestrian coherence within the blocks and the mid-rise fabric surrounding the superblock lack character and architectural quality.


Our intervention makes use of a subdivision algorithm to speculate on potential avenues for change and growth. With a cap on maximum height, the only possible way to grow is sideways. The horizontal extrusions enhance the character of the blocks and use their intrinsic patterns to expand. 

The work aims to question the notion of order and identifies the city as an ever changing, multiplying and morphing organism shaped by overlapping processes.

Project Team: 
Rolando Rodriguez-Leal

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