Drone hydroponics and delivery operation at the Mississippi Riverfront in St. Louis
Academic project Washington University in St. Louis
ARCH 411 / Fall 2019
Critic: Gia Daskalakis
Science fiction is merging with reality as society becomes increasingly dependent on unmanned technology.
Autonomous technologies, such as artificial intelligence taking form in the bodies of robots and drones, will
continue to physically and pyschologically detach humans' consumer role from backend production processes.
Unammned Portal seeks to manifest a societal, subconscious dissonance between mass production and human
convenience by transforming a desolate post-industrial site into a drone-managed vertical hydroponics and delivery
operation at a waterfront site just south of the St. Louis Archgrounds.
Multifunctional drones carry out food production in a vertical hydroponics farm. The vertical
farm takes over an abandoned warehouse, an emblematic scar of the industrial revolution. In the basement, the
goods are packaged. Pre-programmed flocks of delivery drones exit a large portal in shifts to delivery to
addresses in the city or the market on site. Connectivity is enabled via wide, gently-sloping pathways that join
the greenway, Archgrounds, Mississippi River, and vertical farm. Drone operations in the production stage are
mostly performed out of human sight, while drone operations in the
output stage become visual spectacles.