Yunzi Shi ’20, Architecture

Certificate(s): Applications of Computing, Urban Studies, Visual Arts

I worked in collaboration with the Fluvial Metropolis Research Group (GMF) in the University of São Paulo’s Department of Architecture and Urbanism (FAU-USP). GMF proposes to use the waterway ring network surrounding São Paulo as a solution to urban pollution, public transportation and waste management. The São Paulo metropolitan area provided valuable context for my research project, which involved designing architectural units for urban waste management at different scales and proposing ways to incorporate them. The project was developed alongside the researchers in the group — more than 20 undergraduate and graduate students at FAUUSP and our mentors. Besides working on my project, I went on field trips to study urban infrastructure and the waterways, conducted interviews with waste collectors, sat in on a hearing at the state department of logistics and transport, and attended thesis reviews and departmental examinations at FAU-USP. The experience reinforced my passion for using public-infrastructure design and architecture as an intervention for urban challenges.