Rising unemployment and a volatile economy have contributed to a growing class of citizens who are unable to entire the work force in its current format. By incorporating training, living, and working spaces into a custom scaffolding system, the Cocoon activates emerging communities. Moving through the city much like moths and their nests move through a forest, this project proposes to super charge the regeneration of communities by providing new opportunities.
Valerie Reynolds 04The cocoon during the day

The Cocoon addresses the lack of housing for homeless youth and the overabundance of abandoned properties in New York City. It targets a specific sector - youth exiting the foster care system without homes or jobs - and proposes a social transformation that utilizes abandoned sites loaded with potential.

The properties are imagined as live-work spaces for the youth. During the day, they are job sites - the buildings are renovated and rehabilitated to provide new housing and services for the neighborhood and a new construction skill set for the youth. At night, they transform into glowing shelters, providing the workers with a shelter. The scaffold is temporary - when one projected is completed, it is taken down and moved to the next one, wrapping around the building to begin the reparation process anew.

Valerie Reynolds 08During daytime, the cocoon serves as scaffolding for construction

Valerie Reynolds 09At night, its function becomes structure for sleeping units

The main structural form of the scaffolding is dictated by the shading patterns around the city block and also by the solid void. The pieces gather together where there is more sunlight exposure and breathe in and out at the street edge based on existing construction or the absence of. Areas which accommodate sleeping are formatted to receive sleeping mats and tent enclosures which can be broken down and carried by the individuals during the day. These elements incorporate built in flexibility that allows them to be zipped into any of the designated sleeping zones at night.

Valerie Reynolds 10Model testing shading patterns

Valerie Reynolds 07Scaffolding layers and program pockets

Valerie Reynolds 11Scaffold hammocks

The reparation process is repeated an indefinite number of times, each time entering a neighborhood in need of rejuvenation and leaving behind a more productive, healthy community.

Valerie Reynolds 05Valerie Reynolds 06The scaffolding moves from place to place to build and rehabilitate neighborhoods