Living Infra-Glacially in an Imaginary Antarctic Metropolis

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For a stunningly realized thesis project submitted last month at the University of California, Berkeley, Taylor Medlin focused on what he called “Towards a New Antarchitecture.” Presented through a combination of miniature wax models and sculpted ice, the project aimed to show how new, more sustainable construction techniques could be developed for the continent of Antarctica.

The overall project statement read as follows:

Antarctica, the most recently explored large land mass in the world, is also currently one of the most unsustainable place on the earth when viewed through the lens of construction techniques. There are over sixty research stations from thirty different countries already built on the continent, all of which are completely constructed out of materials foreign to Antarctica, necessitating huge logistical resources to set up and maintain life there. Though some stations have begun to experiment with energy collection techniques, most remain completely dependent on diesel generators consuming fossil fuels brought from the mainland. Is it possible to develop construction techniques that take into consideration the materials already present in Antarctica as building blocks for design? And furthermore, what are the possibilities for energy production and conservation that have not yet been explored?

Through the design of a methodology of construction relating to ongoing research stations in Antarctica, I wish to show the plausibility and environmental advantages of designing research stations through the utilization of ice as a principal construction material.

Read the full article with more pictures here

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