How close is architecture to developing a ‘universal motherboard’, a typology so basic, economic, and bereft of whim that it can serve any program on any site? Is this absolutist crystallization of the big box a universal trend, or is it in fact the result of the genius loci of the Midwest? These questions framed the basis of and helped guid the speculative design process that the students worked within. Challenged with creating a "big box city" where residents would be exposed to and or live within the production, consumption, and wast processes that make up everyday goods; in other words a consumer intervention.

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"The big box of the future will let us accomplish this. It has no preconceptions, it has no intended use, it has no program boundaries. It is our blank slate for a new way of life to start in the Midwest.". This was the core that the students worked from as they created an urban layout and several facilities that would exist within such a city. 

Guided by Alexander D'Hooghe the students created a cohesive system of architectural solutions to the "big box city" of the Midwest.

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Critical Practitioner: Alexander D'Hooghe


Virginia North
Keith Philips
Philip Plowright
James Stevens


Jovana Andjelkovic Abu-Ali
Marsha Belaire 
Christian Bell
Elizabeth Bullard
Tonya Chaney
Alina Chelaidite
Bryan Cook
Kimberly DeRoo
Becky Fixel
Brandon Friske
Jeremy Gascho
Ryan Grabow

Rodney Guigar
Nino Handoyo
Tiffany Hodges
Roan Isaku
Stuart Johnson 
Raminder Kanwar
Nathaniel Keller
Nicholas LaForest
Mark Lipchik
Constantin Luchian
Jordan Martin
Morgan McDonald
Peter Mikrees

Janel Mroz
Cherie Ng
Lauren Opalewski
Lesa Rozmarek
Esther Ryskamp
Matthew Scheiderer
Justin Shafer
James Singleton
Graham Spittal
Aimee Vieira
Matthew Wehrly 
James Witman
Kyle Woods

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