The Augmented Reality Experience

Homecoming 2021 was all about exposing our U-SoA students to new technologies and putting the spotlight on real-world Augmented Reality apps.
homecoming 2021

Featured at our U-SoA Homecoming tent was the Augmented Reality application developed by the RAD Lab, which showcased the models of two Urban Design/Masterplan Studios. The studios were ARC407-609 and ARC407-510, the first taught by Donnie Garcia-Navarro, in conjunction with two other professors, Atlanta locals Laura Heery and Merrill Elam, and the latter by Erick Valle. Both studios explore architectural interventions at different scales and impacts, allowing the students to interact and dialogue with city leadership, neighborhood leaders, real-world conditions, and interdisciplinary experts.  
Donnie's studio (ARC407-609) tackled the issue of an urban design project in an area of Atlanta; the AR app used a physical plane model and overlayed a series of layers in the AR, enabling the user/viewers to understand the project better.  The technology allowed several digital models and information to overlay on top of a single physical model. This way, less physical space would be used, and more of the information would be stored in the app. This project had a series of filters where context was shown, a Google satellite map, student models, and the Greenway design.  The students were able to identify and propose projects that focused on solar trees, pedestrian walkways, collecting stormwater through parks, and enabling access to healthcare.   
Erick's Cutler Bay studio (ARC407-510) used a CNC physical model where they left the area of proposals empty so the AR app could populate it. There were three proposals selected so that people who entered could switch between them. The app worked through a QR code that the camera needed to scan every time it changed between the proposals.  

homecoming2021 homecoming 2021 homecoming 2021

The RAD Lab has developed a similar project to this for High Rise Miami:   
Our students felt that this was a great way to understand the project in a more personalized way. This could be an app used on an individual's phone, and the user could explore the projects at their own pace and time. The Responsive Architecture Design Lab (RAD-UM), led by Dean El-Khoury and research associate's / lecturer's Indrit Alushani and Donnie Garcia-Navarro, provide tools and support for studios to implement these new technologies and explore the intersection of architecture and embedded technology.  
Thank you to our students who participated at our Homecoming 2021 tent:   

  • Ethan Blatt  
  • Alicia Colon  
  • Daina Montano  
  • Conor Quigley 
  • Farha Reshamwala  
  • Ann Yu