TIMES SQ. RECRUITMENT

New York, NY

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Urban Stealth

In 2006 we were approached by the US Defense Department to propose an alternative to the existing Recruitment Center at Times Square. The predicament was one of image: The military sought to re-present itself in a new light; how could the American public readily relate to the Military?

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Transplanted Pentagon: from opaque icon to funhouse of the people

The proposal sought to recast the opaque nature of the military-industrial complex, epitomized by the Pentagon, as a potential source of entertainment. The US Military budget for the development of new technologies in 2006 was $147 billion. Surely this technology wasn’t all for imperialism and war?

The Times Sq. Military Lifestyle Center mines this cache of new technologies with a domestic agenda; bringing it back to the public in the form of entertainment, sport, and a pioneering new-military-lifestyle.

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The proposed recruiting station engages the public through the most core of American values: consumerism and entertainment.  The military lifestyle center provides many familiar amenities including health & fitness, space for socializing, and a theater.  Yet these spaces are uniquely enabled by demilitarized technologies, made available to the public as a gesture towards a more unified domestic and military way of living.

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The Pentagon is transplanted to Times Square as an icon from which a new image of the military can be constructed. The mass of the Pentagon is lifted from the ground as if a cloud, allowing the street and the public into its courtyard. Clad in highly reflective inflated-ETFE cushions, the floating cloud is camouflaged by its context, reflecting at various points either the purity of the sky or the chaotic street life of Times Square.

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Unfolded cloud cladding; index of reflections from sky to street

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With PARA-Project
Project team: Brian Price, Dominic Leong, Jonathan Lott