Water Matrix

Design Team: Michael Frederick | Advisors: Ben Refuerzo

Los Angeles, California : 2009
Water is a precious resource in the desert. In an urban desert like Los Angeles where over 85% of the ground is hardscape water becomes even more precious. While the abundant sunlight in Southern California would seem the most obvious sustainable resource, effectively utilizing the rain that does sporadically fall in the Los Angeles desert has a much larger impact on the sustainability of the city than solar production. This project explores the potential to use a urban infill mixed use project consisting of market rate housing and a public school as a literal sponge to adsorb the water shortage in the surrounding neighborhood. Through a combination of technologies the project is able to retain, filter and distribute annual rainfall and daily refuse water generated onsite. These technologies facilitate the generation of year round clean water for the surrounding community as well as provide and educational opportunity for the school. This proximity allows the project to be both physically sustainable and at the same time maintain and enhance the vibrancy of the school.