Paul Madonna
paulmadonna.com
Catherine Chang &
Paul Madonna

Slots are generally narrow spaces of varying width, depth and height that are approximately between three-to-eleven feet (1.0m – 3.0m) wide, ten-to-fifty feet (3.0m – 15m) deep, and range from one-to-four stories high. Their surfaces are punctuated by doors and windows, animated by faceted or semi-circular bay windows, and embellished with roof overhangs, service features and elemental articulation. The position of slots in relation to street level also varies, and is an outcome of the forced projection of the grid on the city’s changing topography. Variations in material conditions such as service features, ornament, elemental articulation, ground paving, and other surface details reflect socio-economic diversity across neighborhoods. The hundreds of extant spaces across the central part of the city can be organized into a matrix of typological variations—a series of urban forms ranging from their most simple delineations to their more complex manifestations. In addition to other possible types that exist, but have yet not been documented, this matrix amounts to the beginning of an archive, an inventory, or a database of historic urban forms. In looking more closely at these forms, through a process of detailed measured drawing, further intricacies of the spaces are uncovered, furnishing the slot with its own unique presence as an architectural entity of functional, architectonic and aesthetic possibilities.