Architecture, College of


Date of this Version


Document Type



A Design Thesis Presented to the Faculty of The College of Architecture at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Architecture, Major: Architecture, Under the Supervision of Professor Lloyd Shenefelt Lincoln, Nebraska: May 2020


Around the world, people live in places where boundaries define their lives. Cities like Nicosia, Jerusalem, Belfast, and El Paso must contend with the constant struggle of us versus them, solidified through physical barriers. Unfortunately, these places and their very real problems are removed and seemingly unimportant in our safe and familiar reality. But these are real cities where real people live. Those people could be us. Their cities could be our cities. Thus, a radical approach is taken in this thesis. A satire of sorts. Four divided cites are examined to understand the spatial and social factors of their boundary. Those conditions are then projected onto the landscape of Lincoln, Nebraska, breaking into the apathy and indifference of our familiar. Four parallel narratives are constructed which become echoes of the true condition. The narratives seem far-fetched, outrageous really, in our stable Midwest landscape. But in many cities around the world, these stories aren’t outrageous but a stark reality. Thus is the aim of this project: to “make one cry “ridiculous!” at the very things that are most familiar to us.”1 The purpose of this experimentation is not to create more boundaries in the world. Rather, the purpose is to force those who are unaffected by boundary architecture to take a closer look. One must confront the issues when they move into our backyard. Would we think about our world differently if boundary became a part of our familiar? Would we look at our neighbors differently? Would we take action, have empathy, and create change? Will anyone hear the echoes resonating from these boundaries?

Under the Supervision of Professor Lloyd Shenefelt

Included in

Architecture Commons