Air Ops: A Retroactive Platform for Energy Exchange by James Leng
Air Ops is a project about re-envisioning zoning and energy-use in a post-Hurricane Sandy Manhattan. The core of the project hinges on the notion that zoning has always been one of the most potent elements in shaping the city, and in order for architecture to tackle the problem of energy at the urban scale, especially as a response to the increasing volatility of the climate, it must bring topics of sourcing and using energy into active dialogue with zoning, real estate, and the public realm.
Just a few months ago, Hurricane Sandy tore a path of destruction through the North East. In some ways, it was an event that revealed the fragile nature of the city’s electrical infrastructures. It raises the question: How can we create a certain level of individual energy autonomy, while simultaneously increasing the robustness of our existing energy infrastructure? One possibility is to look at the potential of an infrastructure that operates between the scale of the parcel and the scale of the city - a local, block scale system that can retroactively integrate with multiple existing buildings.