RAD LAB’s first project: Quartyard. An emerging model of urban planning that demonstrates how repurposing vacant land can quickly activate an empty lot into a thriving Urban Park.
The concept for the Quartyard evolved from the team’s thesis studies while graduate students at the NewSchool of Architecture and Design. The project was conceived relative to the realization that, due to the economic downturn, a large amount of city owned land remained vacant and not ready to be developed. The chosen lot is located in San Diego’s East Village on the block of Park and Market Street which has been empty for a number of years, gathering nothing but trash, blight, and vagrancy. The RAD LAB team has adopted the challenge to temporarily occupy the space with: retail, restaurants, art galleries, garden, and community-based uses that provide an urban park with a sense of place.
The project employs recycled and retrofitted shipping containers that act as the core building blocks of the project and will serve as a temporary placeholder for future permanent development. This temporary project will serve as the city’s courtyard, allowing an underused lot to quickly become a vibrant focal point the residents can be proud of.
Quartyard is excited to host a coffee shop, an outdoor eatery, onsite management, art galleries, farmers/craft markets, an outdoor beer garden, and rotating daily food trucks. Open 7 days a week the plaza space will offer art & fashion shows, film festivals, educational events, craft & farmers markets, and host public and private events. The park will be open for every day social gatherings ranging from local beer tasting events to fundraising events and pet adoptions and so much more. The best part about Quartyard is that it is all outside!
By temporarily filling vacant land with unique architecture, small businesses, and vibrant outdoor spaces, the Quartyard offers a dynamic, interactive, and immersive experience with a southern California sensibility towards the enjoyment of great food, wine, beer, art, retail, and design.