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On the Stafford Harbor, Virginia Resort Project


“You very seldom work on an entire town, and this is the first time I’ve ever done it. The magnitude you’re dealing with makes for different concepts. In other words, an ant isn’t really designed as an elephant. It’s really quite a different thing. And that end I started with the site, from a purely visual, physical viewpoint. I really think of this as a continuation of the land. The intent is to emphasize the site, and so the buildings - in other words, the apartment units, which are intended to vary from six to perhaps as many as twelve stories in height - are put at he ridges of the hills, to emphasize the height of the hills. The lower buildings climb up the hill and merge with the housing so you don’t have a pygmy-giant relationship. Instead it becomes one thing- the high buildings and the low buildings are made into one, so the scale is the same. You not only increase the height of the hill and magnify the relationship of the building to the sky, but when you come to the really large buildings, such as schools, you use them to emphasize the valleys by building into the hill. That way, the void of the valley becomes more apparent. You don’t fill in the valley; you make it more of a valley. The hills are more of the hill, and the valleys more of a valley. And that conceptually carries all the way through this town, with the exception of the marina. A marina is a man-made thing and it has its own kind of geometry in terms of how you place a boat in a slip, and also there is the geometry of the car, so I purposely have shown the marina as a man-made thing which is not irregular. It’s man-made. It’s geometrical.”
Piene, Nan R. "Paul Rudolph Designs a Town." Art In America 55 (July/August 1967): 59.



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