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_Highrise: One Millionth Tower

In “Highrise: One Millionth Tower,” filmmaker Katerina Cizek, the residents of a Toronto apartment building, and a group of architects used webGL to reimagine a residential highrise, creating an interactive documentary that captured their aspirations for the community.

2011 Katerina Cizek
EN Visit the project

Highrise is founded on the idea of inter-disciplinary collaboration. So our teams include a broad scope of disciplines: architects, urban planners, academics, civil servants, landlords, community engagement officers, animators, web developers, art directors, creative technologists, sound designers, and, of course, highrise residents themselves.”

Katerina Cizek, Author, in the MIT Open Documentary Lab blog

To create Highrise: One Millionth Tower, the 2011 iteration of the National Film Board of Canada’s five-year Highrise initiative, a group of Toronto apartment residents worked with filmmaker Katerina Cizek, architects, and animators to visualize their hopes for the community. Audience members can explore the collaborators’ redesigned virtual highrise, which includes a basketball court and community gardens—amenities that the Toronto-based highrise lacked. All of the improvements are designed to foster community and well-being and include commentary from the residents about the current state of the building as well as the potential for transformation.

Richly interactive, One Millionth Tower uses HTML5, webGL, Mozilla’s Popcorn.js, and a variety of other javascript libraries to create the 3-D experience. It is one of the first online documentaries to create such a rich three-dimensional environment without Adobe Flash. The project also integrates with a variety of APIs (application programming interfaces), pulling media from Flickr, Google Street View, and even Yahoo Weather to enrich the user experience.


Project at a Glance :

Language : EN
Country : Canada
Year : 2011
Author : Katerina Cizek
Producer : National Film Board of Canada
Team : ERA Architects,Gerry Flahive,Helios,Mike Robbins
Exhibition Venues : Mozilla Festival
Awards & Nominations : Canadian Screen Awards
Funders AND Incubators : National Film Board of Canada
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