Bik Van der Pol
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Ford Boxes
The Ford Box project is an architectural
research project, which focuses on the impact
of the Ford car factory in Cork in relation
with the built environment of the city. A way
to explore the relationship between Cork and
Ford from an cultural, economical and
architectural point of view can be by looking
at how the wooden boxes that were used to
deliver car parts for the Ford T Model and
tractor to Cork were recycled. Architect
LeCorbusier was hugely inspired by the way Ford
set up his concept of assembling, and the step
towards prefab panel housing developments is
not farfetched. The Ford Box project examines
the re-use of material and the second life of
things, the creativity and inventiveness of how
Cork people re-adapted the boxes for their own
use and the impact of pre-fabrication on the
built environment. Traveling around Cork,
interviewing ex Ford employees, and locating
the remaining boxes, which were often re-used
as dog kennels, pigeon lofts and garden sheds,
we explore how this left-over material of this
global industry became integrated into Cork
Ford Boxes
On the cliffs around Cork many of the summer
houses once started off as Ford boxes, which
have, in time, been turned into permanent
housing, as a result of inventive re-use of
left-over material of the assembly line.