August 08 Blog Articles - Page 12 Print E-mail
Thursday, 31 July 2008 19:00

Week August 3rd to 9th

Malta observed: Valletta’s very urban streets
Shawn Micallef in Spacing Toronto • understanding the urban landscape
Like anybody who comes to Malta, I visit the capital Valletta a few times while here. There isn’t much I need to go there for as I’ve seen and toured the landmarks on previous trips, and I don’t want to buy anything, but it’s “The City” as people on this very urban island call it, and to get your bearings you need to go to the centre of things a few times. It’s a sort of smaller Renaissance version of Manhattan, a perfect grid laid out in roughly a rectangle on a rocky peninsula. However with the rather steep hills, it might be more aptly compared to the relentless grid of San Francisco that made no allowance for topography and kept the streets straight and the corners 90 degrees no matter the elevation. Valletta accommodates by having entire streets made of steps ...

Beijing Interactive
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
It's rather difficult to escape from Olympic and China fever these days, even when it's proverbially halfway around the world. One good place to give in to this fever is the New York Times's Interactive Map of Beijing. Be sure to click on the New Beijing Architecture map, as this one conveys the most information about what the Chinese government's been up to in preparation for the world's spotlight. The sports and urban maps are unfortunately lacking in relation to the above.

Exploring The Ruins of San Francisco’s Sutro Baths
Jimmy Stamp in Life Without Buildings
Gloomy San Francisco Days are always good for exploring ruins. This week, on a particularly grey and windy day, a friend and I took a stroll through the Sutro Baths in San Francisco…or at least what’s left of them. If I were making a low-budge, post-apocalyptic student film, I would probably use the site as my primary location. It’s been 40 years since the baths burned down, but what remains still has a definite ground-zero vibe. Mysterious pieces of concrete and brick walls jut out of the hillside growth and unusual sand formations. Navigating the site can be tricky—as Maude will surely attest—with pieces of bent, rusted metal and concrete holes aiming to trip up careless explorers. When the Sutro Baths opened in 1896, it was the world’s largest indoor swimming hole — complete with 7 different pools, a private museum and 8,000 seat concert hall.

Oregon Tech To Be Powered Entirely By Geothermal Energy
Ariel Schwartz in Green Options
College students are demanding sustainability efforts in their schools, and now universities are stepping up to the plate. This past Tuesday, the Oregon Institute of Technology outlined a plan to build a $7.6 million geothermal power plant on campus. The plant will become the sole power source for the school in a few years, making Oregon Tech the only university to be powered completely by geothermal energy.

Wanted: Designer Who Knows Lay of Land
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Is Real Estate the first section you turn to in the Sunday paper? Do the words "urban planning" set you all a-tingle? Did you adore The Sopranos' spec house subplot? Then size up this week's featured job posting: a plum designer gig at the Urban Land Institute (ULI) in Washington, DC. Not to be confused with the East German-born Project Runway contestant of the same name, ULI describes itself as the "preeminent, multidisciplinary real estate forum" with the mission "to provide leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide." To help with that, the nonprofit organization is seeking a designer to create design concepts and artwork for a variety of printed and displayed materials. Drawing up plans to apply? Learn more about this Designer, Urban Land Institute job or view all the current mediabistro.com design/art/photo jobs.

student housing, malmö
lavardera in materialicious
From Peter Guthrie’s photo stream at Flickr comes this student housing project by Wikeborg & Sander. There are just a few photos there but what an interesting project. I love the loggia along the waterfront, and the facade along the walk sided with wood. Meanwhile above is another world, the housing above coming right out to the water line.

McDonough + Partners’ Groundbreaking Isola Office
Evelyn Lee in Inhabitat
Sustainable design greats McDonough + Partners will soon be bringing Cradle to Cradle thinking to a city often known first for its fashion: Milan, Italy. Their Isola Office building will be aiming for LEED Gold with a variety of sustainable building strategies including solar and geothermal energy, advanced insulation panels, solar shading, and a high-efficiency climate control system. The structure will be part of the Porta Nuova redevelopment, which will introduce 340,000 square meters of housing, community, commercial and government buildings within Milan’s center - it’s practically a city within a city!

Off-Grid Eco-Home Focuses on Lifecycle
Preston D K in Jetson Green
I keep an eye on things in the UK because, for some reason, I have this feeling that they're focusing more on sustainability than we are.  I mean, they're not necessarily talking about green this or green that, they're talking about lifecycle of materials and carbon emissions.  This super luxury eco-home, for instance, was designed with lifecycle in mind.  Designed by ZedFactory, the, ahem, 7535 sf home has received Bath (UK) planning permission and should be complete within about a year.  It will feature efficient insulation, solar orientation, thermal mass, and earth sheltering to minimize energy consumption.



Last Updated on Sunday, 14 September 2008 17:21
 
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