The NYC Urban Porch is a simple temporary structure, which studies all existing components of current typical sidewalk shed system in NYC and modifies it to become an aesthetic-structural installation reducing number of poses to half and providing a brighter and more pleasant sidewalk-shed-space for pedestrians.
Currently, the existing components of sidewalk sheds in NYC are poses, bracings, joint clamps, decks, wood planks and wood panels. Spot lights are usually installed in a linear fashion under the deck. As per code requirements, the deck of the shed should protect the pedestrians using the sidewalk and should be capable of having specific structural loads.
In further study of current system, we found out that there are excessive use of poses with (usually) cross bracing tubes and dark spaces under the existing sidewalk shed. The pedestrians lose their interest in walking with normal speed in dark spaces and people walk with less attention to shops in dark areas. Indeed, in wider sidewalks, the shed is usually made on 3 rows of poses dividing the sidewalk into two parallel pathways. This limits the access of pedestrians to all areas of sidewalk from street side to shops’ side and vice versa. Moreover, the shops lose their business opportunities as potential customers may miss their location under dark structured space with not proper visibility to their signage.
Urban Porch’s Approach
The Urban Porch is proposing to improve downsides of currently in-use sidewalk shedding system. It focuses on structural integrity of in-use installation and uses Arches, as historically-used architectural and structural solutions, to ameliorate current installation. Using Arches in this application is not only for aesthetic values of Urban Porch, but also it helps existing structure system to eliminate every second pose and completely solves having bracing issues. This design provides the opportunity of having larger spans between poses and accordingly, it makes fewer obstructions (with less poses and no bracings) between the shops and the street edge.