By Daniel Roman
My name is Daniel Roman, I was born in Mexico, but at a very young age I was brought to the United States where I have been ever since. Somewhere along the way during high school I had a feeling that architecture was the way to go for me. I completed three years of community college and transferred into SIUC in the fall of 2013. In the summer of 2014 I had an internship with PCI (Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute) in Chicago. I graduated in May 2015 and began Graduate school in the summer of 2015. I am projected to be done with graduate school at the end of summer 2016.
Currently, I am working on various projects from different classes. In the sense of studio, it is very interesting taking a different approach on doing a project in a more professional and office setting, having to research every aspect of a problem. Luckily we have been able to break up into group and at times work individually to be able to research and come together and discuss our findings. On our first assignment we had to research in a group manner different types of buildings and programs, my group in particular was assigned High-rise Residential in Baltimore, MD. Baltimore will be our site for this semester master plans. We found precedence of current and older style of high residential buildings in the area. We were able to find the type of construction that is being used. Seeing that precast concrete being more dominant due to its quick erection and ability to be used in an environmental safe manner.
Each student individually conducted a case study on a housing building; the options vary from multi-family to single, from rural place to an urban location. After given the list, without images, the first name that caught my eye was Morphosis Architects, I had seen their work while working for PCI and I knew they were a high profile firm, so I went with them. I was not disappointed, for their building was in Madrid, Spain and was a multifamily complex. Located in a town from which an architecture foundation had been set, and many villas and little public places had been set as precedence. This new building was set in a way from which you still have private outdoor space such as green space, but also had multiple gathering areas, where neighbors could inter mingle. There are about 6 different floor plans to choose from, going from a single, to a four bedroom apartment, and from a single floor to a double floor. The white façade clearly stands out surrounded by the masonry and stucco all around.
As the semester moves along a very important topic keeps coming up and will continue to, the idea of having the topic of a thesis. A quick brief paper has already been turned in from which we had to state what our thesis was going to be about. I can honestly say, I do not know, architecture in my eyes is really big, and it’s really had to just pick a building style and go with it. I see architecture as a tool that can be used to help others, in a way positively manipulate people to do something, feel some time of way, or simple activate someone to have a reaction. Architecture has those qualities to be able to do that to people. That being said, I would like to design something from which can impact people in a positive way. And even though that is really wide still I will like to narrow it down using current events, and see what people need in the present moment. I feel like designing in the current moment would allow for research to be done in a very quick and productive way. Being able to find current information and possibly have new information coming out as you go.
As to other classes, they are pretty much being tied back into the studio class. The professional practice class has gone into ethics code and how to behave and do’s and don’ts in the industry. Thad has taken his class to a more of a technical aspect, we are dealing with code and quite simply what you can and cannot do on a site. He has set that he wants buildable structures and not make believe structures. I find that as a positive thing because we are growing to be able to understand that theses crazy buildings are mostly not getting built. On top of that, you will not be doing that right out of college.
From all and all, it seems like this semester will be an interesting one and I am sure I will be meeting and making new friends while working in the lab.