T3XTURE collaborated with the Baltimore AIA and the Baltimore Architectural Foundation to organize a series of presentations and a competition to promote fresh thinking about edge specifically addressing the Baltimore Waterfront.
In 2015, Baltimore’s Waterfront Partnership’s Healthy Harbor Initiative set a goal of a swimmable and fishable Inner Harbor by the year 2020. We asked, How might the edge of the harbor change?
A diverse group of thinkers: philosopher, environmentalist, ornamentalist, an ecological engineer, architect, landscape architects, educators, authors, and geographer, were invited to address questions about the future of Baltimore’s edge.
In the spirit of the Sun Magazine article, we also invited Maryland architects to present visions of a swimmable, fishable Inner Harbor. In 1985 Baltimore Sun Magazine invited architects to imagine Baltimore in 2010 or 25 years into their future. In Laura Fry’s article, After the Millennium: Baltimore in 25 Years, four proposals addressed the Inner Harbor, which in the early 1980s had become an international model for revitalizing cities. Issue No.4 of T3xture is a collaboration with the Baltimore AIA and the Baltimore Architectural Foundation to organize a competition and a series of papers to promote fresh thinking about edge specifically addressing the Baltimore Waterfront. In 2015, Baltimore’s Waterfront Partnership’s Healthy Harbor Initiative set a goal of a swimmable and fishable Inner Harbor by the year 2020.
The submitted design re-imagines Baltimore’s Inner-City Harbor by redefining the historic lighthouse along the water’s edge and considers what the Harbor could look like if it were swimmable and fishable.
Inspiration for the innovative structures or “Knollies” is derived from deconstructing the Seven Foot Knoll Lighthouse which currently resides in the south end of Pier 5 located in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. The proposed scheme is based on a point grid system that enhances the intangible connection between the city and the Harbor by extending the city’s streets through the water’s edge. The grid provides a layout for the distribution of Knollies at 400 feet intervals. The grid’s intersections set up the scene for ‘event’ architecture that house activities such as concerts, art exhibitions, bathing, fishing, swimming, playing, dining, living, selling and working.
The Knolly is proposed to be self-sustainable and of modular construction and will have three main sections. The gallery deck for the selling of goods, performances, exhibitions and dining. The house above the gallery will provide temporary housing for the keeper as well as space to the public for activities such as bathing, fishing and access to swimming points. The third section is a light beacon that dually serves as a tank for rainwater harvesting. Each Knolly will educate the community on harbor clean up and pollution prevention.
The Knollies are architectural representations of Baltimore’s past and give organization to the new and displaced urban park, engaging people to navigate along the water’s edge and throughout the city.