This article was originally featured on the cover of the July 4th issue of The Times Picayune / The New Orleans Advocate. Article by Mike Smith; photo by Chris Granger.
In their recent article in The Times Picayune, Terri and Ian Dreyer talk climate change, rising tide, New Orleans’ relationship to water, and the criteria required for a community to thrive and be flexible in the face of disaster.
Originally stemming from NANO’s award-winning exhibit at the 2021 ECC Time Space Existence/Venice Biennale and their presentation at the Venice “Shaping the City” Symposium, Terri and Ian discuss their proposed “arx”, or hubs, throughout the City of New Orleans. Both practical and multi-purpose, the arx would allow our community to not only adapt in a time of intensifying storms, but also to thrive.
Imagine an I-610 exit outfitted with a park and community hub for use after hurricanes, capable of producing its own water and electricity. Their vision is organized in part around the principle, based on research, that people are generally capable of walking a mile in the heat. From there, NANO began to develop the idea of placing a network of arx with a one-mile radius throughout the city.
The arx would cover basic needs, and, crucially, they could be connected to existing infrastructure while, depending on the eventual scope, involve relatively minimal cost increases when renovating bridges or overpasses. During non-emergency times, space within them could be leased to retailers that fit the location, generating revenue to help pay for the projects.
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