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About
BLE UNC Charlotte Station
Mikyoung Kim's designs for the UNC Charlotte station and adjacent plaza originated in the spirit of university learning: she sought to abstract the idea of a core of knowledge. Her resulting plans communicate a message of movement, transition, and flux. 
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This station plaza, which will sit on a direct axis with the UNC Charlotte Student Union, prominently features a sculptural seating element that will exist as a series of undulating and fluid forms. The two long, separate pieces will embrace the center of the plaza and, at night, transform the space into a dynamic interactive shadow play environment. 

This custom perforated stainless steel sculpture will weave through the plaza’s perimeter, leading students and visitors to a central space defined by an inner core of light and shadow. 

On the plaza, squared, dark gray granite pavers will line the edge of the central area to surround a large section of non-directional beige pavers. The granite will also weave through the beige pavers and the traditional UNC Charlotte red brick on adjacent paths, symbolically gathering and collecting all energy towards the central area.  

 

The shadow play environment will be an effect of a choreographed lighting program, dynamically enhancing the station plaza: four poles at the corners of the seating element will be affixed with LED lights and motion sensors, which will turn on a colored light when movement is sensed at night. Walking through the benches, the visitor becomes an active participant in the art by pr​ogressively lighting the whole area.

The shadow play environment will carry to the station platforms through the artist’s glass windscreen designs. They will feature maps of the world, with each continent’s ocean borders outlined in silver. These landmasses will be overlaid with blue lines reaching from top to bottom, curving through the map to define the world’s time zones in 5 minute increments. The shadow play here is conditioned by flux and time, and will be exaggerated as the sun passes through, lengthening and shortening the shadows through the day.

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​Artist Bio

Mikyoung Kim is an award winning artist and designer whose work has focused on the choreography of light and color in the public realm. Her work seamlessly integrates public art, landscape design, and architecture, and has been granted numerous awards from the American Institute of Architects, the American Society of Landscape Architects, and others. She founded Mikyoung Kim Design in 1994 after acquiring degrees from Harvard Graduate School of Design and Oberlin College and is now Professor Emeritus at the Rhode Island School of Design.