Construction and demolition materials contribute significantly to the waste stream in the United States with the EPA noting in 2018 that the construction and demolition industries generated 600 million tons of debris. Many architectural projects have been developed to recoup construction waste streams, turning discarded materials into useful building materials. However, there is an alternate strategy to address these issues. Design can instead start from the other end of the material stream, accepting that buildings are built with finite life cycles to plan for the disassembly of architecture.

Parts-In-Progress is a design methodology centered around assembly and disassembly, using standard dimensional lumber connected with custom digitally fabricated parts. The assemblies of this design experiment are at the scale of architectural components and furniture. These prototypes are constructed from the same set of materials with a range of connections and joints. Digitally fabricated parts are used as smart jigs that are tools for fabricating said assemblies and guide bolted connections. The fabrication techniques of Parts-In-Progress requires minimal amounts of manipulations to stock materials, in order to preserve them for maximum reassembly possibilities or alternative reuse.

As a parts project, serialization is seen as an advantage. However, the effectiveness of serialization is not found in the reproduction of a singular part, but is instead hijacked from the existing mass-produced parts of the existing building materials logistics network. Lastly, standardization in joints between materials are designed as a range of possible connections around specific dimensional constraints. These variations in connections allow for unpredictable outcomes in their respective assemblies, making it possible to construct the most standard appearing assemblies to the most abnormal assemblies. In the terms of Parts-In-Progress, this is the concept of “calculated precarity.”

For the full thesis document see here.
00_Part Didactics Diagram
00_Light Configurations
00_Light Assembly
00_Light Assembly Detail
00_Bench Configurations
00_Bench Structure
00_Bench Assembly
00_Desk Configurations
00_Desk Assembly
00_Desk Assembly Detail
00_Bookshelf Configurations
00_Bookshelf Assembly
00_Bookshelf Assembly Detail
00_Partition Configurations
00_Partition Assembly
00_Partition Assembly
00_Partition Assembly Detail
00_Layout Configuration_Organized
00_Layout Configuration_Pockets
00_Layout Configuration_Loose