Broadway of Manhattan Revealed 1609-Today: Walking on Broadway through cartographic analysis, geographic scale comparisons, and architectural projects

Instructor: Jonathan J. Cohn, Principal at Perkins Eastman (NY), AIA, LEED AP
Jung Hyun Woo, MDS 2016
Max Enrollment: 15
Date/Time: Jan 12-15 /1 – 3 p.m.
Location: 109
Description: New York City’s first street runs the entire length of Manhattan, tracing the historic development of the city. From the early Dutch settlement at the southern tip of the island – a European trading outpost in the “New World” – until the modern era, Broadway was the major connection for land traffic and trade to points north. Starting as a ridge-line trail through the original landscape, Broadway was the original land transportation infrastructure, providing for the development of the Island northward. The importance of Broadway as the major commercial and transportation spine of the city persisted into the 20th Century. Only recently has this paradigm shifted, suggesting a new way of conceiving of the public realm along this historic public way. Through cartographic analysis, geographic scale comparison, and architectural projects, the course investigates and extends the historical trajectory of Broadway, from its origins as a ridge-line trail through the original landscape, to its present-day use as a pedestrian, bicycle, and subway route with limited automobile traffic. Along the way the street functioned as the central trading route of the island, a main street, a diagonal anomaly to the 1811 imposed grid of streets and urban blocks. The course will look at the historical relationship between Native American trails and current Broadway route and imagine a vision for Broadway through an ecological, historical and geomorphological investigation of Manhattan.
The course will run 3 days seminar/lecture and 1 day workshop. The productions of the course will hold an exhibition at New York Society Library in the next semester. The exhibition project will be instructed by Professor Ed Eigen.
Requirements: n/a
Cost/Materials: n/a