AIA CES Credits
AV Office
Abstract Publication
Academic Affairs
Academic Calendar, Columbia University
Academic Calendar, GSAPP
Admissions Office
Advanced Standing Waiver Form
Alumni Board
Alumni Office
Anti-Racism Curriculum Development Award
Architecture Studio Lottery
Avery Library
Avery Review
Avery Shorts


STEM Designation
Satisfactory Academic Progress
Skill Trails
Student Affairs
Student Awards
Student Conduct
Student Council (All Programs)
Student Financial Services
Student Health Services at Columbia
Student Organization Handbook
Student Organizations
Student Services Center
Student Services Online (SSOL)
Student Work Online
Studio Culture Policy
Studio Procedures
Summer Workshops
Support GSAPP
This website uses cookies as well as similar tools and technologies to understand visitors' experiences. By continuing to use this website, you consent to Columbia University's usage of cookies and similar technologies, in accordance with the Columbia University Website Cookie Notice Group 6
Arch plunz woodward daniel vanderhorst hanyin zhang sargassum harvesting unit

Sargatopía: Sargassum-Based Restoration Economy

Sargassum is a pernicious genus of seaweed that is characterized by odorous methane-releasing blooms. It regularly inundates the pristine beaches of Culebra. Our project aims to implement a restoration-based economic model for the island that transforms this noxious and ecologically detrimental substance into a lucrative business endeavor. Sargatopia would operate as an island-wide business network that manufactures sellable products from harvested and processed Sargassum. After the seaweed is collected at a series of beach harvesting sites, it would be transported to a processing center, where it could be cleaned, dried, packaged and stored. The refined Sargassum would be stockpiled in barrels until it could be used at a makerspace in Dewey to fabricate a range of products – from construction blocks to fertilizer. Local youth and tourists alike can engage with this project through after-school programs and volunteer camps. Such opportunities will allow local high-school students to explore viable long-term career options in Culebra. In addition to this a market will sell locally-made sustainable Sargassum products to tourists and local residents. Not only will this proposal clean up beaches and directly create jobs, it will also contribute to other local economic initiatives including agriculture and the construction industry. It will ultimately reduce Culebra’s dependence on foreign imports for building materials, food, and energy.
Arch plunz woodward daniel vanderhorst hanyin zhang manufacturing process drawing
Arch plunz woodward daniel vanderhorst hanyin zhang processing center