We’re happy to announce that Melissa McDonnell, M.Arch ’11, Rice University (in partnership with Animal Architecture’s Ned Dodington) has won a prestigious RDA (Rice Design Alliance) Houston Initiatives Grant for a very cool project. The project is titled “Urban Aeries” and aims to design urban roosting habitats for Houston’s migratory bird population.
Over the course of this summer Melissa will endeavor to increase awareness of some of Houston’s most overlooked city inhabitants (birds) while encouraging birding activities and maybe offsetting some lost revenue for Houston’s least desirable rooftop parking spaces. Here’s the gist from the RDA website:
Claiming that Houston is home to dozens of species of birds that are rarely seen among the downtown area, Melissa seeks to bridge the gap between the dense population of people and birds by means of various urban interventions. With the aid of the $2,500 grant, one such suggestion is using the rooftops of city garages to incorporate urban roosting and observational structures.
A few of the images included in their grant proposal are shown below (a pdf of the proposal can be viewed here). The RDA has offered to fund the first phase, the research component, of the grant which will be completed this summer. A design and prototyping phase is planned to begin immediately following. Expect to see the most current updates on Animal Architecture.
Images copyright Melissa McDonnell and Ned Dodington.