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Off the Cliff

Project Name

Off the Cliff

Project Status

Student Work

Year Completed



40,000 sq. feet


  • Alaina Gentles
  • Adam Bridge



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Over the last five months we have watched the tragedy of Ebola ravage communities in the West African countries of Sierra Leon, Guinea and Liberia.  Within the general population, confusion regarding Ebola’s origin and method of transmission have come into direct conflict with the healing and funeral rituals of the families and communities it has affected - the disease’s contagion is greatest in bodies of the recently deceased. This is perhaps the greatest tragedy for Muslim families - whether to care for and honor the dead with the intimate funeral rituals of Islam and thus condemn themselves to the disease or to leave their loved ones to die and be buried alone. Goal: reinterpret and adapt the Islamic funeral as ritual. Distinct spaces/experiences should be created to ‘house’ each act of the ritual. Spaces should be linked, overlapped, intertwined or connected by path to maintain continuity across the entire ritual. These interstitial moments should relate closely to the spatial and temporal realities of each ritual. Design each ritual to be spatial and experiential or literal.The design will include both internal and external areas. Define both types of space and the transitions between them. Use the articulation and division of ground plane to define/enhance the processional experience. Work within the following constraints:  Site Area: 40,000SF Maximum Internal Area: 20,000SF

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