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Gianna Sullivan

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  • Gianna Sullivan's avatar
    Gianna Sullivan 3/01/2024 1:36 PM

    For eco-challenge seven, I am working on rethinking my approach to architectural material sourcing, particularly as I embark on constructing a large-scale building model. Inspired by the course's insights on nature and consumerism, for this terms final studio project I've decided to veer away from the conventional route of purchasing new materials from art supply stores like Blick, opting instead to explore sustainable alternatives.

    Rather than contributing to the cycle of consumerism by buying fresh materials, I've chosen to embark on a scavenger hunt for second-hand materials Scrap. I look forward to this trip having heard good things from you all and plan to visit with one of my studio classmates. I will need to find bass wood dowels, cardboard, chipboard, and abstract materials that can function as plants in the model.

    Additionally, I'm reaching out to students and local architects to collect leftover materials from their projects. We already have some systems for this in Shattuck Hall but they are quite ineffective so I believe contacting people directly will work better. This not only promotes resource efficiency but also fosters a collaborative spirit within the architectural community. Utilizing these repurposed materials not only aligns with the sustainable principles of this design project but also adds an element of character to my model, each piece carrying its own story.

    • Maranda Simpson's avatar
      Maranda Simpson 3/03/2024 3:19 PM
      Hi, Gianna! This is a really cool idea. It is super interesting to me to see how every classmate this term is taking their own major and career future(s), and applying to the topic of sustainability! I am excited for our generation to break into the world more as we get older- great things in store.

  • Gianna Sullivan's avatar
    Gianna Sullivan 3/01/2024 1:09 PM
    For eco-challenge six I've decided to move closer to my PSU in the coming months as I prepare for graduation and the start of grad school, opting for a vintage apartment in NW Portland's Alphabet District. Inspired by the sustainable transportation theme from the Choices for Sustainable Living, I've made the conscious decision to try and sell my car and embrace biking as my primary mode of commuting. In order to do this, I'll have to purchase a bike at the moment I am considering if I should buy a manual or electric mike and if I should purchase second hand or new something I still need to research further.
    Choosing an older apartment aligns with the course's emphasis on sustainable living, as older buildings often have unique characteristics and are situated in established, walkable communities with existing infrastructure, promoting a sense of community and reducing the demand for new construction and development. While we do not usually prefer to live in urban areas this move reflects a commitment to reducing our carbon footprint and immersing ourselves in a more eco-friendly lifestyle where almost everything we could need is in the same area.
    Recognizing the challenges of biking in the unpredictable Pacific Northwest weather, I plan to rely on public transportation, specifically the streetcar, when conditions are not conducive to biking. This strategic use of public transportation adds another layer to the approach, ensuring flexibility and practicality in my daily commute.

    • Ben Wall's avatar
      Ben Wall 3/03/2024 7:08 PM
      Hi Gianna,
      Congrats on your move! Awesome choice! I love urban living for all the reasons you mention: intact neighborhoods, walkability, and multiiple transportation options. I prefer older apartment buildings, as well, but I had never considered the sustainability aspect. It's sad to see new buildings going up when there are vacant beautiful older buildings that can be restored and repurposed.

  • Gianna Sullivan's avatar
    Gianna Sullivan 3/01/2024 12:40 PM
    For eco-challenge five I decided to visit my parents plot at our local community garden to help prepare it for spring. This required our collective effort in working their garden beds and included a conscious choice to plant native pollinator plants. This decision was inspired by the courses emphasis on fostering ecological balance in agricultural systems. As we meticulously selected seeds at a local nursery and planted them, I explained to my parents the importance of incorporating native plants to attract local pollinators, especially bees, to the garden. This practical application of sustainable gardening aligns with a holistic approach to sustainability.
    As we worked, I shared insights from the course material, highlighting the pivotal role that bees play in maintaining biodiversity and supporting crop pollination. We carefully planted bee-friendly species such as native wildflowers, lavender, and flowering herbs, enriching the soil with compost to provide a nourishing environment for these crucial pollinators.
    Looking ahead, the garden is poised to transform into a vibrant and bustling ecosystem in the coming months. The anticipation of bees buzzing around the blossoms, drawn by the native pollinator plants, underscores our commitment to creating a sustainable space that not only yields lots of fresh high-quality produce but also contributes to the well-being of the local environment.
    This experience reinforced the idea that sustainable living involves not just conscious actions but also a thoughtful consideration of the interconnected relationships in the natural world. As we concluded the day's work, the prospect of the garden becoming a haven for native pollinators added an extra layer of fulfillment, turning a simple gardening activity that was accomplished quickly as a group into a meaningful contribution to the local ecosystem.