Methods for Leeville

Project Goals:

The goal was to understand an architectural documentation and design process for investigating at-risk towns in the Gulf South, using Leeville as a case study.

Project Team:
    • Shelby Doyle
    • Katherine Bartkowiak
    • James Canales
    • Kelli Cunningham
    • Kevin Miller
    • Landon Pugh
    • Karl Schmidt
    • JaLeesa Sims-Smith
    • Joshua Smith
    • Zack Godshall Assistant Professor of English
    • Michael Pasquier Associate Professor of History + Religious Studies
    • Launch Leeville

Methods for Leeville is the fourth architecture studio in the six-studio sequence Master of Architecture Program at LSU. The studio examined the small coastal town of Leeville, Louisiana as a surrogate for towns throughout the Gulf South. The town is not protected by the levee system and is exposed to the impacts of a changing climate, coastal land loss, and increasingly violent storm events. Rather than advocating for a traditional notion of “saving,” the studio explored the concept of absence, and questioned architecture’s methods for simultaneously preserving, un-building, and designing possible futures for Leeville.

Students visited and documented Leeville. Through this work they produced their position on “saving” using drawing, photography, video, writing, and modeling. This process culminated in an architecture that reconsiders the tectonic occupation of the delta. Rather than discussing architecture as an object and a site as a plane, this studio argues that architecture is understood as the tectonic bracketing of the deltaic system.

Direct + Broader Impacts:
Visibility, local partner, teamwork, leadership, research. Each student produced a video summary of their project, as well as a project book documenting their investigations of the stated goals and their subsequent design proposals. The academic output included faculty and graduate student papers and presentations.