Blog Articles - December 2007 Print
Sunday, 02 December 2007 19:00

December Blog Articles

December 31st, 2007

2007's Best: Sustainable Development
Alex Steffen in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
My early look at The Open Architecture Network and the Future of Design, about Cameron's work turning Architecture for Humanity into a design amplifier Some demographers call it the largest migration in human history: the movement of hundreds of millions of poor rural people to the emerging megacities where they believe they can build themselves a better future. Overall, the urbanization of the planet is a good thing, helping people struggle out of absolute poverty, increasing access to essential services like health care and education, and raising the status of (and opportunities available to) young women (and thus helping to bring down birth rates and stabilize population growth). But the sheer magnitude of urban growth -- by some estimates, two-thirds of the cityscapes that will exist by mid-century have not even been built yet -- presents dire challenges as well. Already, over a billion people make their homes in urban squatter settlements: how do we build communities to house the two billion more who are expected to live in slums by the middle of the century?

2007's Best: Sustainable Design
Alex Steffen in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
John Thackara is one of my heroes. The Man Who Mistook a Concrete Pillar for a Global Threat might show you why. Some of you may know Oliver Sacks' book The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat. It's about people afflicted with fantastic perceptual and intellectual aberrations - and in particular a man who looks at something familiar (his wife) but perceives something completely different.

2007's Best: Cities
Alex Steffen in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
Patrick's Remaking the Built Environment by 2030. By 2030, about half of the buildings in America will have been built after 2000. This statistic, courtesy of Professor Arthur C. Nelson's report for the Brookings Institution, means that over the next 25 years, we will be responsible for re-creating half the volume of our built environment.

Greening Montreal’s laneways
Christopher DeWolf in Spacing Montreal
Montrealers across the city are taking a renewed interest in their laneways. Since many of them are too narrow to work as service corridors, their original purpose, lanes can be used in different and more imaginative ways. In October, the Plateau borough announced that an old alley behind St. Louis Square would be converted into a “country lane,” but that won’t be the first time something interesting has been done to a Plateau laneway. That’s what I discovered when I came across the laneway running behind Milton Street between St. Urbain and Clark. Some time ago, I’m not sure when, the pavement was ripped up and replaced by a cinderblock path flanked on both sides by greenery. It’s a peaceful, bucolic space in a neighbourhood that can often be anything but.

Nouvel to In-Spire Manhattan with Midtown Tower
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
The Museum of Modern Art is getting a new--or should we say Nouvel--neighbor. The architectural firm of Jean Nouvel (who we hope will one day tread the boards in an all-starchitect cast of The King and I) was recently declared...

New Archeworks leaders, SEED of Segura, Coudal and Lifson, Lee Bey's Unbuilt Chicago plus 30 more events on January Architectural Calendar
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
This is the month Stanley Tigerman and Eva Maddox pass Archeworks on to a new generation of leaders. at a January 16th event that will also feature Lee Bey, Sarah Herda, Joe Rosa, Zoe Ryan, Hennie Reynders and Robert Somol (you know, that whole crowd, as Severn Darden used to say). Two days later, there'll be a SEED conference at IIT which will include Jason Fried, Carlos Segura, Jim Coudal and Edward Lifson. Lee Bey will talk, at a Friends of Downtown event, about visionary Chicago projects that never managed to see the light of day, ...

December 30th, 2007

two prefabs, matteo thun and partners
Justin in materialicious
Heidi (above) and O Sole Mio (below), two nice looking prefabs by Matteo Thun + Partners.

Montreal’s postwar neighbourhoods
Christopher DeWolf in Spacing Montreal
For all of its historic neighbourhoods, Montreal is really a postwar city. In the twenty years after 1941, the number of people living on the island swelled from 1.1 million to well over 1.7 million and tens of thousands of new apartment buildings, plexes and houses were built to accommodate the steadily growing population. Old neighbourhoods expanded, new neighbourhoods were built and the suburbs blossomed, stretching east and west towards the edges of the island. Lately, I’ve found myself drawn to these parts of town, placers where the urban fabric seems raw and unpolished despite its relatively recent vintage. For the urban wanderer, there are plenty of discoveries to be made.

Griffintown’s citizen activists
Christopher DeWolf in Spacing Montreal
This weekend in the Gazette, Steve Faguy spoke to a handful of the citizen activists who are casting a critical eye on the Griffintown redevelopment scheme, including Urbanphoto contributors AJ Kandy and Desmond Bliek. Kandy, Bliek and their associates aren’t necessarily opposed to the project, they explain, but they want to make sure it’s pedestrian-friendly, well-integrated into the surrounding neighbourhoods and loaded with the amenities that a new neighbourhood of nearly 10,000 people will require, like health clinics and parks. They’re also concerned with the way the project seems to be evolving behind closed doors, with little specific information available to citizens. 

Gensler Jilts Bruce and Walter; Shacks Up With Louis
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
In a story that I somehow missed, Crain's Chicago Business's Eddie Raeb reported on December 19th that Gensler is moving out of its space in SOM's Inland Steel Building for new digs in renamed Sullivan center, the building Louis Sullivan designed for the Carson Pirie Scott department store. Following that century-old institution's closing over a year ago, Joseph Freed and Associates is in the middle of converting the structure primarily to office space, with retail surviving only on the lower floors.

Simplicity: "We Have Met the Enemy..."
Jon Lebkowsky in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
The cultivation and expansion of needs is the antithesis of wisdom. It is also the antithesis of freedom and peace. Every increase of needs tends to increase one's dependence on outside forces, over which one cannot have control, and therefore increases existential fear. &mdash E.F. Schumacher, 1973. In the midst of the winter holiday season's explosion of festive commerce, I find myself thinking about voluntary simplicity, a term originally used by Ghandian Richard Gregg in 1936 to describe a focused existence excluding the clutter and complexity associated with 20th century acquisitive lifestyles of the middle classes.

December 29th, 2007  

Walking a Fine Rose Garden Sponsor Line
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
In mid-December it was announced that the Rose Garden will make available renaming rights to a corporate sponsor. It was very sad news, but not surprising given that most major sports teams play in arenas and stadiums with corporate sponsor names. I think there's a fine line here that's important. I prefer it when a sponsor name is combined with the retained original game. Take the college bowl games being played this week. We know that the Fiesta Bowl is officially called the "Tostitos Fiesta Bowl", but that the Tostitos brand doesn't comprise the identity completely. Then there's "The Rose Bowl Game Presented by AT&T": no argument whatsoever about the people in Pasadena hitching a sponsor to their otherwise intact name. But just before writing this post, I happened to turn on ESPN during the Meineke Car Care Bowl. And my first thought was, where the hell is that? And I'm a huge college football fan--I even wrote a book about it. If I can't remember anything about the identity of the Meineke Car Care Bowl other than who played in it, that's a huge missed opportunity for the city of Charlotte, which my cable-TV info button told me is the host, and for the bowl itself.

Sacred Sands: A Strawbale B&B Guest Retreat
Abigail in Inhabitat We are all in need of some good old R&R from time to time, and the Sacred Sands Guest Retreat in Joshua Tree, California is just the sort of (green) destination to cure what ails you. This two guest room B&B eco-lodge not only offers desert solitude, no frills pampering, and pristine views and panoramas, but also the opportunity to experience strawbale construction first-hand in this luxury outpost near the western entrance to Joshua Tree National Park.

Knafo Klimor Architects

Young in Architecture
Knafo Klimor is one of the Winners of the 2nd International Architecture Competition for Sustainable Housing. to find out more... "Israeli culture is a collage of traditions, assembled over a short period of time. Its source of inspirations and influences comes from both Mediterranean and European cultures, attempting, with simple alchemy, to define an identity. Within this debate Knafo Klimor Architects operates over three decades.

December 28th, 2007  

PREFAB FRIDAY: ‘Option’ Modular House by WeberHaus
Ali in Inhabitat
German prefab firm WeberHaus and architect Peter C. Jakob of Bauart have made a stylish case for sustainable living with the modular concept ‘Option House’. Driven by a modern aesthetic and energy-efficient elements, Option is a fully functional, light-filled dwelling that delivers low-impact living in just 70 square meters of elegant and understated space.

December 27th, 2007

All eyes on the city
Geoff Manaugh in BLDGBLOG
Like some rogue branch of the independent film industry, private security firms are now installing what The New York Times calls "one of the most comprehensive high-tech public surveillance systems in the world," and they're doing it in China. While these cameras and other forms of remote sensing are being installed to keep Olympic athletes and their screaming fans safe during the coming summer's Games, the worry is that the surveillance will simply stay put...

Iskandar Development Region, Malaysia
Young in Architecture
"On January 15, 2008, Mecanoo will present to the Prime Minister of Malaysia the design for the Iskandar Development Region in Johor ..."

Dreaming Big
Chris in Brand Avenue
Yesterday, 2:01 PM
Check out Future City, a 100-day "game" created by the Hamilton Spectator wherein readers imagine what the Canadian city's next 100 years could look like. And you get to influence and vote on how the city morphs and adapts to dramatic changes in climate, shifts in the economy, new patterns in population and immigration as well as through many unpredictable events. The city's future--taking into account changes in climate, population, lifestyle, and economics--plays itself out in a engaging and clever way. Already automobiles have been banned from the city and replaced by trams, and voters have rejected the construction of a solar panel "bubble" covering part of the city in favor of a nuclear reactor....
 

Donor Hall By Inaba
Frame Magazine
Jeffrey Inaba designed Donor Hall, an installation in the SANAA-designed, New York City, on the subject of world cultural philanthropy. Jeffrey Inaba uses a radical approach to research and design to make opaque information come alive. Inaba has created Donor Hall for the New Museum’s lower-level hallway, a bold, immersive graphic environment that identifies and quantifies public and private philanthropy around the world. The presentation is based on research on dozens of organizations—from sports, media, politics, education, religion, finance, paramilitary, and non-governmental organizations—and tracks the amounts of money various organizations donate to culture. Read more…

Transforming Digital Architecture from Virtual to Neuro
Young in Architecture
"A few years ago, architects were almost obsessed with the question of how cyberspace and virtual reality are changing basic ideas about architectural space. But events like the Neuroaesthetics conference here in London , along with the increasing impact of neuroscience on contemporary architectural theory, marks a clear change of interests -- if not a paradigm shift. Significantly, the then almost ubiquitous word "virtual" is now being replaced by "neuro."...

Touring Cardinals Stadium, Admiring Pentagram
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Because we're home for the holidays and our boyhood home in Glendale, Arizona happens to be in the same place as the new Cardinals Stadium, we thought we'd pop in and take a tour of the mammoth Peter Eisenman-designed...

Mao's Home Province Goes Green
Mara Hvistendahl in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
The China Daily reports on a campaign to make three cities in Hunan, Mao’s home province, test zones for energy-saving and environmental protection strategies. Changsha, Zhuzhou, and Xiangtan will be singled out for improvements in public transportation, energy efficiency, and pollution treatment: The provincial government will help the three cities build energy-saving, environmentally friendly industries, and make them more beautiful and livable....

Solar Wind Pavilion by Michael Jantzen
Mahesh in Inhabitat
Michael Jantzen’s experimental designs are a fascinating amalgamation of art, architecture, and environmental sustainability. The visionary architect’s design for the Solar Wind Pavilion is no exception. Planned for the California State University at Fullerton, the Solar Wind Pavilion is an impressive integration of wind power generation, solar energy, and rainwater harvesting, all combined into a gathering place for students and faculty for special events, studies, relaxation and meditation.

December 26th, 2007

The Suburbanization of Walt Disney World
Brendan in Where
"It was really nice. I loved being able to walk around to everything and not have to worry about traffic or parking. We could just leave the hotel and catch a bus and ride it right to the parks, and then if we wanted to go somewhere else we could take the monorail. Everything was just really easy to get to." That is an (imperfectly reproduced) comment from my mom during a conversation we had about y family's recent trip to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. I've been home for the holidays, and it was the first chance I'd had to really hear about their trip. It's certainly not the first time they've been to WDW -- in fact, it was their fourth (I was along for the first two trips, for the record). But this time -- and I have a feeling that blogging over this past year had something to do with this -- I found renewed interest in hearing about the same parks I'd visited and heard described so many times before.

enviro board
Justin in materialicious
Enviro Board Corporation has developed and patented a sustainable, ‘ultra-affordable’ housing infrastructure solution that employs waste agricultural straw as a base substrate material.
Enviro Board panels offer a superior building product that is easy to handle and assemble. Enviro Board Panels are solid “concrete like” fiber panels comprised of highly compressed straw fibers. Panels are extruded through the mill in a continual process, covered with a durable waterproof paper membrane, cut to desired lengths and end-capped. Panel density and thickness can also be adjusted.

World’s Biggest Building Coming to Moscow: Crystal Island
Karim in Inhabitat
Moscow’s rapidly growing skyline will soon feature an eye-popping new addition: Crystal Island, which will be the world’s biggest building when completed. Sir Norman Foster’s mountainous 27 million square feet spiraling “city within a building” will cost $4 billion and it is scheduled to be built within next 5 years. The Crystal Island will be Lord Foster’s second large scale project in the Russian capital, and his third new building design that resembles a volcano (we’re talking about his two mountainous buildings in Astana, Kazakstan). Although many people are calling this design the ‘Christmas Tree’ of Moscow - we can’t help but be reminded of the utopian and also rather volcanic X-Seed 4000 design for Tokyo. Unlike that pipe-dream project, however, Foster has a track record of getting buildings built, so the likelihood is high that we will see this striking structure towering over the Kremlin within 5 years time.


December 25th, 2007

cyronak house, estes/twombly
Justin in materialicious
“Quiet Modernism” in New England. Lovely stuff. Located on Block Island, this house draws upon a tradition of frugal and forthright architecture that can withstand the rugged island climate. Sliding barn doors enclose the small courtyard entry and protect it from north winds. To the south is a small deck which catches summer afternoon breezes. Inside, the 22′ square 1st floor is open; the 2nd floor contains two bedrooms and a bathroom. At 1050 square feet, this is the smallest house we have done. Estes/Twombly Architects

renovation of a 16th century fortified farm, caruso & torricella architetti
Justin in materialicious
16th Century Fortified Farm, Nesles la Vallée, France. Completed 2005. Renovation of a complex of a 350 sq m house, a 450 sq m hayloft and historical garden. Part of a 1600’s fortified grange connected with the Château, sold after the Revolution to a local farmer ( while the Chateau was disrupted and sold in pieces as building material), subsequently sold to the composer Ch. Gounod, who restored a part as his country-house. The intervention consists in a restoration of the late 19th century renovation intervention, in a restoration of the 1600 original parts with special care for the walls and floors original finishing and in full preservation of the part that remained grange (hayloft) through all the time till our days to house temporary art installations.

Albert Speer Jr., Building His Own Legacy
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Interesting bit of biography we found by way of Archinect: Spiegel's "Albert Speer's Son, Urban Planner." It's about the son of, yep, that Albert Speer, the Nazi architect, who has tried to work with having his father's legacy always...

Denver Gets the 'Cool City' Thumbs Up, Seattle Doesn't Do As Well
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
When this writer was ooing and ahhing during a trip to Denver earlier in the year, he talked to co-editor Alissa, who has some extended experience with Colorado, and she said something to effect of "Yeah, Denver's becoming the...

LOOS-HAUS
Crouchback in CONTINUITY IN ARCHITECTURE
In the years since our first visit to their Hotel-Restaurant the Steiner Family have, every Christmas, sent us a sprig of vegetation from the forest surrounding their building, better known to architects as the Khuner House by Adolf Loos. Guests can stay, relax and eat in the almost unaltered...

December 23rd, 2007

Urbanffffinds 010
Brendan in Where
I had to venture out into a small blizzard to find a wi-fi spot for this week's Urbanffffinds. Now that's dedication!

Green and pleasant land
Geoff Manaugh in BLDGBLOG
I was poking around for images this morning and I somehow ended up at a site called Old UK Photos. They collect old, public domain photographs of the UK (rather cheekily including Ireland) – but some of the photos are so extraordinarily beautiful, and so hard to believe that they really are photographs, that I felt like re-posting a few here.

Christmas in Chicago, 2007 edition , A photoessay on Christmas in Chicago, 2007
by Lynn Becker
 Chicago, its neighborhoods and suburbs, is so big it would take a book to capture its celebration of Christmas, so here's just a few selected shots of Chicago's city center during the holiday season of 2007.

December 22nd, 2007


CHIGAGO’S NEXT LEAD: The Green Alley Project
Ali in Inhabitat
Chicago Mayor Richard Daly, who has already sent a successful wave of green roofs over the Windy City, has turned his sights towards his next environmental challenge: greening the city’s alleys. Some 1,900 miles of alleyways that cover over 3,500 acres of city land with paved, impermeable surfaces will become the focus of the Green Alley Project with designs and improvements to help manage stormwater, reduce urban heat island effect, promote recycling and conserve energy.

Green Building & Remodeling for Dummies
Piper in Inhabitat
Green Building & Remodeling for Dummies is the perfect holiday gift for those of us who are interested in green building, but need a little expert help. Admittedly, the For Dummies® books are a smart start for anyone wanting to pick up a new trade or just learn the overall basics on any particular subject. With more than 150 million books in print and over 1000 topics, this new release by Eric Corey Freed of Organic Architect may be the best evidence out there that green is mainstream.

Simplicity: "We Have Met the Enemy..."
Jon Lebkowsky in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
The cultivation and expansion of needs is the antithesis of wisdom. It is also the antithesis of freedom and peace. Every increase of needs tends to increase one's dependence on outside forces, over which one cannot have control, and therefore increases existential fear. &mdash E.F. Schumacher, 1973. In the midst of the winter holiday season's explosion of festive commerce, I find myself thinking about voluntary simplicity, a term originally used by Ghandian Richard Gregg in 1936 to describe a focused existence excluding the clutter and complexity associated with 20th century acquisitive lifestyles of the middle classes.

port-a-bach, atelier workshop
Justin in materialicious
Okay! Here’s the Port-a-Bach, from Atelier Workshop in New Zealand! It reminds me of BARK’s All-Terrain Cabin, in that it is created from a 20ft. shipping container. The Port-a-Bach portable cabin sleeps two adults and two children, is power, water and sewer independent, has one wall that folds down to create an open living space and folds back up to secure the unit for storage or relocation. It has a kitchen and complete bath, and can be hooked up to external services, as well. Awesome.

ipad™, andre hodgskin
Justin in materialicious
Top New Zealand architect Andre Hodgskin created a sensation when he launched the BACHKIT™ in 2000, gaining acclaim in international design magazines. Andre has now developed the iPAD™, a fresh look at the concept of a simple but stylish lightweight kitset building.The iPAD™ is a true kitset bach designed to covers a range of options; it could be a one bedroom holiday home, secondary dwelling, granny flat, office, studio or resort unit to name but a few. It can be grouped as a series of pavilions to form larger accommodation if required. A single iPAD™ totals 50m sq with decks of 55m sq and will retail in New Zealand for $125,000.00*. Various external cladding and colour options are available to suit individual taste and context. Of particular note is that the iPAD™ can be either manufactured off-site and easily transported to its final destination, or shipped as a kitset and erected on site by a licensed contractor.

Philip Johnson's Apartment To Be Preserved
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
The New York apartment once owned by architect Philip Johnson has escaped gut renovation, thanks to a pair of Texans who were enraptured by the place. Michael and Amy Cosgrove paid approximately $2.25 million for the 1,427-square-foot one-bedroom on the...

Taking Design to Task
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Another design magazine?! Really? "Don't worry," says the first issue of Task Newsletter, "It's going to be great." A look at the contributors is convincing. The designers-slash-editors: Emmet Byrne from Minneapolis (and of the Walker Art Center), Alex DeArmond...

Why Geo-Engineering is a Debate Whose Time Has Gone
Alex Steffen in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
With some regularity these days, I get calls from reporters wanting to know my thoughts about various schemes for attempting to use enormous technofixes -- vast space mirrors, mountains of iron filings dumped into the oceans, newly planted forests of trees gene-hacked to suck in more carbon dioxide, intentionally filling the atmosphere with sulfate pollution (creating a sort of artificial volcano), etc. -- to combat climate change. And, increasingly, my opinion has grown stronger: they're all dumb, dangerous ideas. I generally believe we ought to keep an open mind about matters scientific, and I'm prepared still to be convinced that one or more of these ideas can work and work well. That said, as the evidence currently stands, I think the intelligent stance regarding debate on these matters is one of extreme skepticism.

What's New in Interior Design Is Old Again, Right Away
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
You want to read the most exhausting yet really fun story in the New York Times you'll probably ever run across? If so, click on over to Penelope Green's "Flash in the Can: Design Soon Forgotten." It's all about...

Dark City
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
The long night approaches. The sun, six hours stolen from peak summer flush, crouches low in the sky, buried alive beneath the skyscrapers. Birds chirp their anxiety from bare, snowdripped branches. An urban brew of filth-informed slush mires streets and sidewalks. We go to our jobs in darkness, return home in darkness, while in workday hours, the eviscerated rays scarcely penetrate the panes of glass sweating cold into dry, overheated rooms. Winter solstice, Natalis Invicti, day of the new sun's birth, become, under a later Julius, the next the first, birth date of the son of God, harbinger of personal salvation.


December 21st, 2007

Bad Sign From REACH: Housing Nonprofit Threatens Classic Interstate Motel Sign
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
It wouldn't be much of a stretch to call North Interstate Avenue Portland's version of Route 66, the classic mid-20th Century motorway that has inspired many a romantic ode and cable TV documentary. It's not to say this is the open road, which was part of Route 66's mystique. But the other half of Sixty-Sixiana is the style of its accompanying motor hotels. Local filmmaker/artist Matt McCormick devoted half of his aclaimed show earlier this year at Elizabeth Leach Gallery to a slideshow of old motel signs in the southwest, and seeing the succession of them, with names conjuring the space age, tropical motifs, or cowboy mythology, they seemed like western America's own version of Easter Island statues.

Michael Arad's September 11th Memorial Pushed Back to 2011
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Today, 5:05 AM
What's the one lesson you learn in your first middle school civics class? "If the government is involved with it, it's going to take a lot longer than expected." Such is the case with the news that, after cutting costs and stopping and starting over the past year, the Michael Arad-designed September 11th Memorial, "Reflecting Absence," has had its unveiling pushed back to 2011, instead of two years from now.... 

December 19th, 2007

loft on renwick street, fernlund and logan
Justin in materialicious
Loft, Renwick Street, NYC, New York. Project: 1996. Two adjacent floors of a former factory were joined by removing a quadrant of the floor area between them, creating a double-height space that links all parts of the loft. A large, new opening in the exterior wall replaced two rows of existing windows. Industrial steel sashes were used to break down the scale of the opening and to reference neighboring natural-light factories. Public areas on the lower level utilize a concrete floor—a nod to the building’s past— while wide-board oak was used for the stairs and upstairs bedrooms. The building’s rough textured columns and beams became a counterpoint to the smooth surfaces of the new walls....

Tonight on Project Runway: A Sweet Deal?
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
A highly-placed, design-savvy little birdie has told us that tonight's new episode of Project Runway will involve a chocolicious designer challenge. Our source reports that the regal and charming Tim Gunn will give the remaining 11 contestants all the details on a trip to the Hershey's Times Square megastore at 48th and Broadway.....

vacation house in the dordogne, piet hein eek
Justin in materialicious
Yesterday, 11:54 AM
De vakantiehuizen in de Dordogne: Piet Hein Eek is renovating an old stone farmhouse for himself and his family in The Dordogne region of France. Running a project like this from a distance can present a unique set of problems, but in this case it looks like all the hard work is starting to pay off…. I’d love to see more photos. Via The Reference Library
Also: Be sure to spend some time perusing Piet Hein Eek’s site - the kitchens, the furniture, the architecture, and lots more cool stuff...

Compare and Contrast
Aventinus in CONTINUITY IN ARCHITECTURE
Yesterday, 11:51 AM
Ph.D. candidate James Robertson is continuing his research into the early career of Jack Coia and has recently visited both the Sir Basil Spence exhibition in Edinburgh: Back to the Future (Dean Gallery, Edinburgh), and the Gillespie, Kidd & Coia exhibiton in Glasgow: Gillespie, Kidd &...

Sci-ARC Installation
The 1A class at Sci-ARC recently [December 10, 2007] completed an installation for the main entrance using laminar flow. Professors: Andy ku, Jenny Wu, Marcos Sanchez.

Ingo Maurer Redesigns Munich Subway Station
Frame Magazine
Ingo Maurer will transform the subway station Münchner Freiheit, one of the busiest junctions of Munich's public transport system. Construction is to be finished in autumn 2009, simultaneous with the inauguration of a new tram line terminal at Münchner Freiheit. With his design, Ingo Maurer wishes to create a timeless, vivid atmosphere

Tristan Nuggets and Isolettes
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
If you didn't happen to be in Italy for the evening-after broadcast of the Daniel Barenboim Tristan and Isolde at La Scala in Milan, here's Waltraud Meier's stellar Liebestod, to give you an idea of what was up. You have to think that this production is a prime candidate for a future Great Performances installment, but for now, here's a direct link to it on You Tube, where, if you're patient, you should be able to listen to the entire opera by piecing together all of the eight to ten minute fragments.

December 18th, 2007

The High Line: A River Runs Through It...Both Ways
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Native Americans dubbed the river we know as the Hudson "Muhheakantuck," meaning "the river that flows both ways." That fluvial versatility inspired Brooklyn-based artist Spencer Finch's "The River that Flows Both Ways," the just-announced public art project that will inaugurate New York's High Line Park next fall.

Katrina Cottages Not Welcome in Mississippi
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Although over 900 families along the Mississippi coast have already moved into the so-called Katrina Cottages, according to this piece, "Post-Katrina cottages get a lukewarm welcome," all is not well. The cottages, which you'll remember won Marianne Cusato the Cooper-Hewitt's People's Design Award last year, are being kept out by communities that don't want them to bring down the property value of their recovering neighborhoods...

shaker house condominium
Justin in materialicious
Shaker House Condominium is a six unit project located at 464 Hancock Street in the Bedford Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. Inspired by the Shaker Village in Hancock, Massachusetts, each unit incorporates elements of Shaker design. The painstakingly renovated homes are a perfect blend of function and form, featuring top quality cabinets, hand crafted inset storage closets in every bedroom, wide plank pine flooring, period authentic bathroom fixtures, and historically accurate windows. All of the units have either a separate storage space or adjoining recreation room on the basement level and access to two shared courtyards.

Design Hotel With Kinetic Facade
Frame Magazine
The recently opened Lánchíd 19 design hotel in Budapest has a special feature: a kinetic glass façade which responses to the environment. Lánchíd 19, the first design hotel in Hungary, is the result of a collaboration between the following artists, architects and other specialists....

Architects Say They Are ‘Very Happy’ With Their Job
admin in mirage.studio.7
According to Time Magazine’s survey on Job Happiness, 53.5% out of an unknown numbers of architects surveyed appears to be very happy with their job, I wonder what happen to the 46.5%? Draftsman on the other hand happens to be the worst in the architecture industry, under paid for their knowledge and capabilities, I believe draftsman deserve more, no wonder they are sober, Mr.Architect can’t run an office without a draftsperson, can he/she?

Jetson Green: 2007 Sunset Idea House
architecture.MNP
Preston, green ninja master over at Jetson Green writes: This is the San Francisco Sunset Idea House for 2007, and it’s one of the first LEED Certified residential remodeled homes in the nation. This home is unique from other Sunset Idea Houses in that it’s in a dense urban area on a compact site. There are two-units and the smaller one, which is about 1,200 sf, is reportedly on sale for $1,089,000. No word on whether the larger, 3,600 sf unit will be for sale.

Looking Back at 10 Years of a Getty'd LA
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Today, 7:00 AM
Not only was yesterday the ten year anniversary of the word "weblog," this week also has marked the tenth birthday of the Getty Center in Los Angeles. Thinking about the building has left everyone apparently in something of a reflective mood, going back to that age old question of LA's place in the architectural world...

No Overlooking SERA's New Interstate Condo
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
Being that it’s the first new condo infill project along the Interstate Avenue corridor with its still relatively newfangled MAX line, The Overlook probably will not (despite its name) fail to be noticed. If the renderings and the look of it during late-period construction provide an accurate picture, the project -- situated next to the St. Stanislaus Catholic church (they put on the wonderful Polish Festival each September), and developed by one of its members -- also seems to have the potential to be some very nice architecture...

Pedro E. Guerrero's American Century
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
Looking for a great last-minute Christmas gift? Check out Pedro E. Guerrero's A Photographer's Journey, which combines his strikingly beautiful and often iconic pictures of the work of Frank Lloyd Wright, Alexander Calder and Louis Nevelson, among others, with a memoir that provides both the stories behind the shots and the poignant saga of the trials and triumphs of his Mexican-American immigrant family. It's a book that's continued to linger in my mind since I first read it this past spring. You can read about Guerrero's quietly epic story, and see a few of the photographs, here...

Chicago vs. Pittsburgh: Round 1
Brendan in Where
Tonight's post is the first of three in a blogging debate, in which Jim Russell of The Burgh Diaspora, who guest posted at Where last month, and I will discuss the relationship between Pittsburgh and Chicago, and which city relies more heavily on the other. Nowadays, anyone following urbanism, economics, public policy, or related fields will have certainly heard of the theory that we are entering into an age of global urbanism where cities all over the world will be competing directly with each other for talent. Talent, we are told, will be more and more valuable as society becomes more technologically advanced, shifting even more heavily toward an international information economy. What you know, essentially, will become what you're worth. In this economic environment, megacities like Chicago will no longer merely be competing with New York, Washington DC, and San Francisco for talent; soon (already, many would say) Chicago will have to go head to head with London, Paris, Buenos Aires, Cape Town, Mumbai, Tokyo, Shanghai, Sydney, and on and on.


December 17th, 2007

TheCityFix
Robert Katz in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
Yesterday, 1:17 PM
Over half the world’s population now lives in cities, with more and more people moving to them every day. Urbanization is not a new issue – a search on Worldchanging for “transportation” in the “cities” topic area alone returns 277 articles. Yet, despite all that has been written about urbanization, smart planning, and bright green technology, there’s still much more to be documented. This is especially true when you get into the intersection of policy, technology, environmental science and urban planning. At least, until now. Yesterday, EMBARQ, World Resources Institute’s Center for Sustainable Transport, launched TheCityFix, a blog dedicated to exploring these overlapping issues. (Note: I work at WRI.)

Locating the Modern City
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
Yesterday, 1:04 PM
A few days ago, in a recent post, I made a reference to Portland being more “European” in its urban planning and its more pedestrian and transit-oriented focus. A reader soon commented that this tendency of characterizing Portland this way is lazy, that not all European cities make such perfect role models, and that each city is different. And they of course were right. This got me thinking about a book I received a press copy of a few months ago called Urban Imaginaries: Locating The Modern City , edited by Thomas Bender and Alev Cinar.

personal outdoor dwelling system, corey w. crawford
Justin in materialicious
Personal Outdoor Dwelling System is a detached structure that is versatile in design and will change with your needs. This model was custom designed and built for the particular needs of the client. Orientation and placement of the structure maximizes the shade and protection from the harsh Texas sun. To provide this client privacy, the back and one side of the structure is without openings or windows. A beautiful mitered window adorns the front of the structure framing the lovely vegetable garden. A total of four doors completely open the space to the view of the garden. The bamboo floor is easy on the feet, very soothing to the eyes and contrasts the warm hues of the mahogany walls.

December 15th, 2007


Holiday Like You Give A Damn
Colin in blog like you give a damn
No matter what you're celebrating this time of year, many of us choose to express our holiday spirit by giving gifts to the people we love. Expanding on last year's short list of alternative gift ideas, here are my picks for the "Holidaze 2008". They might just bring you a little sanity and humanity during the coming hustle and bustle....

MNP Reviews: The Suburbanization of NY
architecture.MNP
The Suburbanization of New York: Is the World’s Greatest City Becoming Just Another Town? by Jerilou Hammett and Kingsley Hammett, editors - Photographs by Martha Cooper [2007]. This collection of fourteen essays on the development of New York City - covering everything from the Depression to the today - offers an interesting, if not subjective, view into the history of NYC, and a look at its possible future. The essays, each written by a different author, all have individual voices and perspectives - but all come together as one to cry out against the current changes in the city.

Archiculture, the Documentary
architecture.MNP
‘A documentary about the architectural thesis, shot by architects, to be viewed by all.’ Formerly titled Architorture [they changed the name, so as not to have a negative connotation], Archiculture is a documentary [currently in pre-production] focusing on the thesis semester of 5 architecture students. The filmmakers, David Krantz and Ian Harris, are recent college graduates [for landscape architecture and architecture, respectively] met in 2006, and began planning the film - which will give outsiders a candid look at what it is to go to architecture school and produce a thesis project...

Chris Hacker: Sustainability Expert, Smooth Operator
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
We never tire of hearing sustainability guru Chris Hacker talk about his design work at Johnson & Johnson. We even saw him back when he had just left a similar position at Aveda, when his presentation was still called "Green is the new black," which he doesn't call it anymore, he says, because, well, we're sure you understand why. Although it was great to see how his work for this gigantor corporation is really making an impact--they've reduced, re-sourced and redesigned packaging for so many major products already--we were much more, um, intrigued by his work on the new KY brand: Intrigue....

Scott Stowell Does Some Very Good Design
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
We went to a party last night at Good's pop-up store here in New York where we met editor Morgan Clendaniel, publisher Max Schorr, creative director Casey Caplowe and designer Tyler (sorry, we didn't write down your last name, tell us!). So it was only fitting that at today's Cause/Effect we'd see Scott Stowell of Open, whose firm has been the driving creative force, along with Caplowe's team, in cranking out this fine mag (which as you can see above, kinda, was shelved with the gun mags when the design issue featured an AK-47 on the cover).

I Like It, I Actually Like It
John Commoner in FUTURE HOUSE NOW
Yesterday, 1:20 PM
This is the first coffee table I've seen in ages that I actually like. Pretty cool, though not cheap at $3,500.

PEAR LIGHT: Nick Foley’s Portable LED Pears
Evelyn in Inhabitat
If you like the portability of the Phillips LED Candle light, but want something a bit “sweeter,” check out Nick Foley’s Pear Light. Custom made from hand-forged steel, this tree of light comes bearing fruit with rechargeable LEDs that allows you to take the lights with you down dark hallways. Once “picked” from the tree, each pear stays illuminated for about an hour. To bring it back to life, just place it back on the tree, where it will recharge for your night-viewing pleasure.

Oscar Turns 100
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
Today is Brazilian architect Oscar Neimeyer's 100th birthday. This marker is extra-extraordinary as Neimeyer continues to practice architecture, something that might not come as a surprise to fellow architects but is nevertheless amazing. Projects include a new city in Algiers on the drawing board and a cultural center for Avila, Spain. Sao Paulo marks his birthday with a giant 100 hanging on the Copan building that he designed.

Lounge System by Hackenbroich Architects
Frame Magazine
Today, 5:33 AM
Hackenbroich architekten designed a system for a lounge landscape that can be infinitely long. Costumers will have the choice of various positions which can be combined in any sequence. The upholstery consists of a system of cushions that can be connected in multiple ways to cover the favourite zones of the sitscape. The prototype for the sitscape is six metres long. It has been developed for a specific user and is based on six basic positions.

 
 

December 14th, 2007

Newhouse III Opens At Syracuse
Bradley in east coast Architecture review
The Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University recently opened the third addition to their college amid much fanfare. The building designed by the Polshek Partnership at around $31.6 million features state of the art facilities to educate, study and advance the ideals of free speech within the digital age. A statement from the firms website regarding the project appears below: "This new addition for the Newhouse School of Public Communication's complex, Newhouse III, will allow the school to expand its education and research missions with a new facility focused on interdisciplinary study. It will house community spaces such as dining facilities, student lounges, and an auditorium, an executive education suite that functions much like a professional conference center, classrooms, offices, editing suites, and numerous interdisciplinary media labs and research centers....

Artists Shrink New York Down to Size
Yesterday, 5:32 PM
Our beloved Big Apple is about to get very small. Opening tonight at Flux Factory ("a not for profit arts organization supporting innovation in things") in Long Island City is New York, New York, New York, an interactive, multimedia installation in which 100 artists reimagine New York City's public and private spaces. Dreamt up by Jean Barberis and curated by Barberis, Melanie Cohn, and Chen Tamir, the exhibition is inspired by the Panorama, Robert Moses' scale model of New York City in the Queens Museum of Art...

AIA Announces 2008 Gold Medal Award
ASLA.org - The Dirt
Yesterday the American Institute of Architects (AIA) announced their major award winners, the Gold Medal, Firm of the Year Award, and the Topaz Medallion. Renzo Piano, Hon. FAIA, was awarded the Gold Medal for his decades of work around the world. KieranTimberlake Associates received the Firm of the Year Award and Stanley Tigerman, FAIA, received the Topaz Medallion.

curiosity.jp
Young in Architecture
 I like this! The building form reflects the relationship of privacy and publicity. A rectangular glass box rapped round with solid concrete structure. The solid concrete seems to be pushing you away from the inner layer where functional areas are situated. Contrast of material between transparent glass panels and opaque, clean, solid concrete structure; long ramp entry from side way to the second level shows contrast towards the entry point to the office working area at ground level with simple, straight forward colour scheme and light treatment just makes it adorable to me. The work by curiousity.jp. to find out more...

Seven Questions for Murray Moss
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Yesterday, 12:50 PM
His store has been compared to a musem (and copied by MoMA's design galleries), a theater with live performance, and heaven, but design tastemaker Murray Moss just wants shoppers to be ready for an experience--an invigorating one. "This is why we keep the temperature freezing cold," he told Vanity Fair last spring. "I don't want it to be comfortable. I want you to be awake. If you want to just find out where the candlesticks are, the store doesn't work."...

reconstruction of atelier brancusi, renzo piano
Justin in materialicious
All my life I have been drawn to the work of the sculptor Constantin Brancusi (1876-1957). His original studio near Montparnasse, Paris was torn down soon after his death, but Renzo Piano recreated it in this building, situated in Centre Pompidou, to showcase the sculptor’s works in as close to their original light as when they were created, complete with the all-important north-facing window walls/sky lights…

Solutions Happy Hour on Friday, Dec. 14th
Colin in blog like you give a damn
Over the past year we've heard from audience and presenters alike that they'd like a place to get together and continue the conversations started at previous Solutions Twin Cities events. This is a great idea. We'd like to invite you to attend the first of many casual gatherings with this in mind. Come to meet presenters from past and future events, talk with other like-minded individuals, and enjoy an end-of-the-work-week happy hour. It'll be fun...  

Today's archidose #161
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
L1030425, originally uploaded by atelier_db.
Barcelona Auditorium (1999) in Barcelona, Spain by Rafael Moneo.

Robert A.M. Stern Breathes Sigh of Relief, Keeps Job at Yale
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
What's a good way to keep your job? Well, it's never a bad idea, in the same year as your contract renewal, to be picked to design the presidential library from the current president while you're also working at his alma mater. But we just kid about the news that Robert A.M. Stern will be keeping his job as dean of the Yale School of Architecture for another five-year term.

BLYGAD 2.0
Colin in blog like you give a damn
I easily come across 6 or 7 items a day that I wish I had time to write about here on BLYGAD, but I've always felt pressured by the format to only post here when I had the time to do something substantiative, which can leave this place a little on the quite side at times. As a possible remedy for this, I've been experimenting with Tumblr lately, appropriately at www.tumblelikeyougiveadamn.tumblr.com. And as you can see from my Tumblr archive image above, I've been having allot of fun with it (56 posts in 12 days to be exact).

The Dream Remains the Same
Brendan in Where
A recent post over at TNAC's blog, The Street, suggests that it may be time to change the American Dream. But what is the American Dream, exactly? It's a well-worn turn of phrase (were it a turn in the road, the guardrail might be out from being hit so many times), and while people usually use "American Dream" as slang for "house in 'burbs, lawn, two cars, spouse, 2.5 kids, dog," I would argue very strongly against this interpretation. The American Dream is not about houses or property or ownership -- heck, it's not even about money; it's about "new hopes, new dreams, and a better way of life for the future."

December 13th, 2007

Chris in Brand Avenue
At the beginning of the month, Danish architect and "urban quality consultant" Jan Gehl produced the results of his nine-month study of central Sydney, Australia. The city of Sydney had hired him to produce a body of recommendations in order to improve the city's core, both functionally and experientially. His report paints a picture of a city at war with itself - car against pedestrian, high-rise against public space. "The inevitable result is public space with an absence of public life," he concludes.

Tigerman awarded AIA Topaz Medallion
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
The Board of The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) today announced the awarding of its 2008 Topaz Medallion for Excellence in Architectural Education to Stanley Tigerman, who has influenced and worked with generations of Chicago architects, as well as the moving spirit, along with co-founder Eva Maddox, behind Archeworks, the city's alternative design school.

AR AWARDS: Taketo Shimohigoshi’s Suspended Gardens
Ali in Inhabitat
Architect Taketo Shimohigoshi has overcome the challenge of finding green space among dense, urban skylines with an elevated installation of vegetation. His design concept frames the city sky with slices of moss-covered beams, which define and connect the cityscape in a greener perspective. His vision has earned him a 2007 AR Award for Emerging Architecture - the definitive honor for young architects.

New York Magazine's Best of 07
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
New York Magazine features its top ten pieces of architecture in New York (and Connecticut) from 2007. Number one is the building of the moment, the New Museum. The rest of Justin Davidson's list is a bit predictable, but it does illustrate the quality and breadth of buildings, interiors, projects, and exhibitions produced in and for the city and why the place is appealing for residents and visitors alike.

Claude Maus Flagship Melbourne Opens 

Frame Magazine
Australian fashion label Claude Maus opened its first flagship store, designed by Herbert & Mason architects. The Claude Maus flagship store is an eclectic mix of formalism, minimalism and American folk architecture. Functional and sculptural objects define the space, playing with the combination of organic and sleek
materials, mixing wood and glass together with rope and tiles to shape part of the interior’s key ingredients.


Steven Holl’s Proposal for the Hudson Yards
Jorge in Inhabitat
We can’t help but love Steven Holl, so when we saw his design proposal for the Hudson Yards in NYC, we once again marveled at how good he is at creating responsible, human, and sustainable design that is just as wonderful and intriguing as the best architecture out there. Granted, this design is a proposal, but alas, we can still marvel at the beauty of great design.

  
 

December 12th, 2007

renovation in chamoson, laurent savioz architect
Justin in materialicious
‘Conversion of a Dwelling’, Chamoson, Switzerland. Project: 2004-2005. When it comes to mixing up ancient and modern, few can match the Swiss. Check out this conversion of an old rural stone house into a combined residence and art studio & gallery.

Penang Global City Center, Asymptote Architecture
architect studio in architect studio
Asymptote Architecture Announces the Design of Penang Global City Center (PGCC), an Expansive, Sustainable, Mixed-Use Development with Two Iconic Sixty-Story Towers. The design achieves its elegance and stature through the simultaneous embrace of natural landscapes and contemporary urbanism. The forms of the two towers are comprised of both horizontal and vertical elements: sculpted horizontal components move across the plinth, rise up and transform into articulated vertical structures. Set against the backdrop of the nature reserve of Penang Hill, the twisting, glass façades of the towers “perform” various surface effects—reflecting, refracting and distorting views of Penang, the surrounding landscape and the seascape beyond.

Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies, Krueck + Sexton Architects
architect studio in architect studio
The Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies selected Krueck & Sexton to design a signature architectural statement about the nature of Jewish culture and learning. By its transparency the facade announces the accessible and public nature of Spertus.

Literary Dose #21
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
"[Alvar] Aalto's prize-winning entry for the Finnish Pavilion in the Paris World Exhibition of 1937 was a rhetorical display of different techniques of timber construction, each expressing certain characteristics of wood...The importance of the Finnish Pavilion lay in its demonstration of Aalto's site-planning principles, wherein the plan of the building is invariably separated into two distinct elements, and the space between them being articulated as a space for human appearance, as we will find later not only in the Paris pavilion and Villa Mairea but also in the brick-clad Synatsalo Town Hall dating from 1949."

Syd Mead: Visions of the Future
architecture.MNP
“If you’ve ever looked down on a major [highway] interchange you couldn’t have helped but admire the very definite swings and tensions of the road curvatures, interlocking lanes and off-ramps, all based on precise control of the kinetic energy flowing over them.”

Good News about the Low-Carbon Future -- and Technology Transfer?
Mara Hvistendahl in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
As climate scientists descended on Bali last week to discuss emissions targets and climate change mitigation strategies for the coming decades, the consulting firm McKinsey released a report titled “U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions: How Much At What Cost?” The document gives a solid play-by-play of what the U.S. will have to do to achieve a low-carbon economy by 2030 (a summary is here).

December 11th, 2007


1608 laurel grove road, dan zimmerman
Justin in materialicious
1608 Laurel Grove Road, Winchester, Virginia. 3.33 acres. 800sf cabin, originally built: 1783. Price: $299,900. Located ten minutes from Historic Downtown Winchester yet situated on three acres off a quiet dirt road this home is close to town but feels like a rural retreat. Award winning architect and contractor Dan Zimmerman renovated this cabin respecting the history of the house but also injecting a modern sensibility into its character.
The first level holds the kitchen and eating/entertaining areas and the second level holds the bedroom, bathroom and lounge/studio space. The open plan of each floor maximizes the space and allows for flexibility.
Also on the property is a workshop built from reused wood from the original cabin. Not just any old workshop that you can buy at the big box stores, this outbuilding was designed to fit the site and interact with the house.


"Up on the green roof / click, click, click..."
ASLA.org - The Dirt
"And down through the chimney with good Saint Nick..." In what's becoming a December tradition, a jolly, inflatable Santa is holding court up on the green roof. You can watch his antics live on the green roof webcam.  While you are there online be sure to check out the latest data released this fall about the environmental benefits of the green roof. The full briefing report can be found here. The comprehensive water monitoring report can be found here.


ModCell : BaleHaus Straw Bale Construction
architecture.MNP
As you may have realized - we here at MNP are into straw bale construction, and enjoy being able to bring you interesting/innovative examples of the construction method being put to work. Here we have featured a project by ModCell called the BaleHaus - a proposed straw bale home that the company describes as a ‘domestic carbon bank’, a house that stores carbon credits because of its being built from renewable materials [straw and timber], in addition to other integrated sustainable technologies.


Jetson Green: Artek Pavilion
architecture.MNP
Preston, green ninja master over at Jetson Green writes:
This is the Artek Pavilion, aka “The Space of Silence,” which was designed by Shigeru Ban and built with primarily one material: an environmentally-friendly, paper plastic composite known as UPM ProFi. Debuting in the U.S. this weekend at Design Miami, the pavilion is roughly 131 long x 16 feet wide and can be assembled and taken apart quickly.


Figuration in Contemporary Design opens Thursday at Art Institute
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
Figuration in Contemporary Design, the latest production from the Art Institute of Chicago's Curator of Architecture and Design Joseph Rosa, opens this Thursday, December 13th. According to the museum, the exhibition, mounted in the usual Gallery 227, seeks to posit a trend away from modernist minimalism:
"Ever since the Austrian architect Adolf Loos declared that ornament was “crime” in 1909, modern architects and designers have heeded his argument. From the clean, industrial lines of the Bauhaus and International style to the wares for sale today in Design Within Reach, figuration—the use of representational elements—in modern design has been pushed to the margins. [Figuration in Contemporary Design] makes the argument, however, that figuration is returning to contemporary design, leading to an inventive and unique aesthetic."

Designism 2.0 Thursday Night at the ADC
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
In an effort to blow our frequent flier miles through the roof, this third of UnBeige will be embarking...

 

December 10th, 2007

Furniture By David Adjaye
Frame Magazine
Taking inspiration from Africa and the time he has spent travelling there, David Adjaye launched his first pieces of furniture in Miami. David Adjaye's Monoform series consists of four different objects. As much sculptural works as pieces of furniture, the Monoforms are intended to function both as stand-alone objects and together in a variety of configurations, creating versatile seating, benches and tables. Each of the four types has been fabricated in two mediums – Hassan Green Granite and Solid WalnuWhile. Designed with interior spaces in mind, the granite edition can also be situated outdoors....

Green Building in Zimbabwe Modeled After Termite Mounds!
Abigail in Inhabitat
Biomimicry’s Cool Alternative: Eastgate Centre in Zimbabwe
The Eastgate Centre in Harare, Zimbabwe, typifies the best of green architecture and ecologically sensitive adaptation. The country’s largest office and shopping complex is an architectural marvel in its use of biomimicry principles. ...

Andrew Maynard Architects: Tattoo House
architecture.MNP
I should start by saying that Andrew Maynard - with the lofty goal of ‘complete tyrannical world domination’ [sounds familiar…] - has already reached 9th dan ninja status, and I’m pretty sure he’s not even thirty [so in architecture terms, he’s basically a child]. The Aussie architect has a unique and thoughtful approach to design, and should be watched closely by all those interested in quality, green, and seemingly low-cost buildings. Here we have the Tattoo House - an addition to an existing 3 bedroom home in Fitzroy North [A suburb of Melbourne] providing the current residents with new living and kitchen space, opening onto a new deck.

(n)CERTAINTIES
Neri Oxman in MATERIALECOLOGY: Neri Oxman
Today, 1:44 AM
Just returned from a visit to Studio Francois Roche / Marc FORNES at Columbia University. The reviewers included Alissa Andrasek (Biothing), Ammar Eloueini (AEDS), Benoit Durandin, Hernan Diaz Alonzo (Xefirotarch), Michael Meredith (MOS), Marco Vanucci (AKT), Mariana Ibanez (Harward), Simon Kim (MIT), Vito Acconci (Acconci studio), Francois Roche (R&Sie) & Marc Fornes (theverymany), Lydia Kallipoliti, Aurel F. Von Richthofen (KARV) and myself. Click below to veiw the work and admire the indigenous (and clearly French) dialect.

 
 

December 9th, 2007

Fender Katsalidis
Young in Architecture
Yesterday, 10:19 PM
Katsalidis tower is one of my design directors favourite. Some more interesting work from Katsalidis. to find out

casa ti, david day and green modern kits
Justin in materialicious
casa ti is a partnership between Green Modern Kits and Architect David Day. An affordable, green structure is cost effective by stripping it to the bare bones for consumers to customize according to their taste and budget, and offers 1,100 sq. ft./3 bedrooms of living space that can incorporate a green roof, photovoltaic panels, and rainwater collection. The structure is framed in high-recycled-content steel, in SIP form. You can buy casa ti in kit form or buy the plans to build it from scratch. Prices for the kit start at $38,000. The casa ti prototype is being built in Virginia and a larger model, the R1 Residential, is being built in California.

Flotsam, Jetsam and the Three Gorges Dam
Regine Debatty in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
The Three Gorges Dam is the largest project in China since the Great Wall and the Grand Canal. The hydroelectric river dam, probably the biggest concrete construction in the world, spans the Yangtze River. The total electric generating capacity of the dam will reach 22,500 MW, at which point it will also claim the title of the largest hydro-electric power station in the world by capacity. The dam is not expected to become fully operational until about 2011.

williams cabin, stephen atkinson
Justin in materialicious
Williams Cabin, Durango, Colorado. Another great minimalist project from the boards of Stephen Atkinson. I love seeing cabins that are so different from the stereotypical ones you see in magazines like, say, Backwoods Home Magazine (which I do enjoy). Not that there’s anything wrong with those, I just prefer Modern!

The Option of Urbanism
Alex Steffen in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
Yesterday, 3:08 PM
I'm in Barcelona, where I delivered a talk on sustainability and the future for the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona's remarkable NOW series, and where Erica and I have stayed on for a working vacation. Barcelona, people here will tell you, is not only the most vital and stylish city in Spain, but the densest city in Europe. Though I've heard this factoid disputed by people who aren't from here, the fact remains that Barcelona is extremely dense: to wander through much of Barcelona is to walk through mile after mile of narrow streets embraced by beautiful old buildings, fronted by small shops.

Zambian Architecture
Ugo Okafor in African Architecture and Design
The Zambian Architecture website writes about traditonal design types as well construction methods in Vernaluar Zambian Architecture.The use of sutainable building materials in vernaular Zambian Architecture is very prominent and I beleive could influence some of the western building concept being adopted in the continent.

December 7th, 2007

Greater Than the Great Pyramid 
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Does it seem like civilization is about to end or something. Seems to us, when you start building crazy big stuff for no real reason (we're looking at you, Dubai), that usual signals the end of things. So while occassionally glancing over our shoulders on the look out for marauding invaders, we report, by way of Archinect, on The Great Pyramid, a project looking to build a pyramid ten times the size of the ones they've got over there in Egypt.


Beyond the Bowtie: Blumenauer on Architecture
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
In case you didn't happen to pick up a copy at the newsstand, this month's AIArchitectmagazine includes a fairly extensive interview with Congressman Earl Blumenauer, whose district is comprised largely of east Portland and Multnomah County. "A staunch advocate of the architecture profession and built environment, the congressman is committed to promoting livable communities at the federal level," the intro goes.


Certified Mission District remodel goes green to the gills
Anh-Minh Le, Special to The Chronicle
Anyone who has ever tackled a remodel probably has a story to share about delays and missed deadlines. But when the story plays out in public, it can become fodder for the real-estate blog rumor mill.
And so there has been much talk about the problems plaguing the Sunset Idea House, which officially opened its doors last weekend - nearly four months behind schedule. Several blogs reported that the entire two-unit property would be on the market for around $4 million, and that Sunset magazine and the house's owner, Robin Wilson, have parted ways.

The Olympic Stadium Onslaught, In Full
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Remember a little while back when we said that the 2012 London Olympics couldn't catch a break, with the newest complaints stemming from the unveiled plans of the new, Peter Cook-designed Olympic Stadium. Well, we're not hear to say that that's gone away. Instead, we point you to a collection of bad reviews that Architectural Record has put together in a single piece, thus making it one larger, smoother blade to stick into the side of the poor Olympic authority


Casey Brown
Young in Architecture
Fasinating stuff from Caroline Casey & Robert Brown.
"A studio devoted to creating contemporary architecture through an organic understanding of building in direct response to climate, topography and lifestyle. Sensibility of place derives from years of working on historical buildings, learning the crafts, understanding the tectonics of biulding and how our time relates to history. This perspective creates a preference for lasting architecture ofunpretentious functionalism, using materials and expressed structure.This non prescriptive approach takes each client, site and brief as something one off and special. "

Architect Disconnect
Brendan in Where
While I do try very hard to keep things positive in Where posts, occasionally something comes along that's so gratuitously heinous that I just can't help but rail against it. That is the case with College Squeeze's recent post on the "20 Ugliest Colleges in the USA." "It does have a nice quad and trees, but seriously. Who cares about trees?" No one. No one at all. "Sure, it’s full of smart people, but it’s just a brick campus." Hilarious. "For once, I’d just like to see a building that was intentionally designed trying to be beautiful, but just failed badly." Because most buildings are designed to be ugly, you see. "I haven’t actually been to Carnegie Mellon, just heard horrible things about it and Pittsburgh." Brilliant technique! Masterful analysis!

Waro Kishi + K associates
Young in Architecture
"This is located in a highly fashionable district in the middle of Tokyo. The five-story building is occupied by a jewelry store on the first four floors and a salon for public relations and customer services on the top floor. Each floor in plan consists of just a single space and a stairway. The tiny site is 6.3 meters wide, 4.6 meters deep, and less than 30 square meters in area. My two basic design ideas were to adopt a structural system without columns in order to make effective use of the limited area and to make the overall structure as lightweight as possible in order to simplify the foundation. A reinforced-concrete wall structure is used on the lower three floors. Panels fabricated from steel sheets in a factory were assembled on the site for the fourth and fifth floors. As a result, construction work was much like assembling a model of the building." More interesting work from Waro Kishi + K associates. to find out more...


December 6th, 2007

urban weehouse
Justin in materialicious
The first Weehouse built in a major city is for sale. It’s located on a mature wooded lot in Linden Hills, Minneapolis, Minnesota, and has 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, a heated tuck-under garage, and many floor-to-ceiling windows. A terrific example of green prefab architecture.
There will be a Holiday Open House on December 14, 2007, 4pm to 7pm - address is 4221 Ewing Avenue South in Minneapolis. For more info, contact owner/realtor Brian Oeschger.

INTERVIEW: Serge Appel on One Bryant Park
Jill Danyelle in Inhabitat
One Bryant Park is the first LEED platinum “skyscraper”; what is your favorite LEED aspect of the project? Aside from LEED, what was the most interesting or exciting part of the project for you?
For me, the best part of this project isn’t a single element or technology but rather the chance to work with an incredible team of dedicated professionals all driven by the same goal. Having the backing of the Bank of America and the Durst Organization has made a tremendous difference in setting the bar high in terms of sustainable design. On top of that, each consultant on the team is top notch and fully engaged with the project.

Report from the field: Hindu Temple Charrette
Colin in blog like you give a damn
AFH MN member and charrette participant Maureen Ness has this report for us:
Members of AFH MN and members of the Hindu Temple of Minnesota convened on the evening of October 12th and morning of October 13th to engage in a design charrette for a Garden of Remembrance for the burial of the icons damaged by vandalism last year. On Friday evening, AFH MN toured the temple and met with the priest to learn more about the Hindu religion and appropriate guidelines for the burial of damaged statues.

A Second Look at the City's Courtyard Housing Competition
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
Today, 1:27 PM
Last month when I wrote about the City of Portland planning department's Courtyard Housing competition, it was mainly to announce that winners were about to be announced, as well as to look at the role such a housing type could play in the city's ongoing densification. Today I decided to have a closer look at the competition winners and to go back and look at the comments to my own post after the winners were announced. The biggest question mark, both for the competition and for the city itself as courtyard housing potentially goes forward, is what the shared open space is really for. Is it a place for people to park their cars, and then for kids to play on as an afterthought?...

Neighborhood in Transition
As density increases, Parker Gray struggles with violent crimes and a troubled elementary school.
By Michael Lee Pope
Nowhere in the Parker Gray neighborhood is the pace of change more palpable than the corner of Pendleton Street and North Henry Street. As the daily crush of Route 1 traffic whizzes south along Henry through the regional traffic corridor, an ultra-modern looking six-story tower is rising on the southwest corner of the intersection. On the other side of the street, as if stuck in a time warp, is a two-story townhouse from the early 20th century. Its subtle detailing is all but lost in the rush to modernize the neighborhood with large-scale condominiums.

Sustainable tourism: must tourism damage the toured?

WorldChanging Team in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
Wouldn't it be great if... we had more examples of sustainable tourism on which to build? Radical ideas, real locations This international design camp, led by Steve Messam, brought together teams of young designers, senior students, visual artists, architects and young professionals to develop sustainable tourism ideas for (and with) specific North East locations and communities. Participants came from eight different countries and spanned many disciplines. Their projects looked at everything from urban camping to the structures that are likely to emerge with the advent of geothermal energy, and the decoration of landscape using the tools and patterns of agriculture.

GAP's Donald Fisher Unveils Presidio Museum Plans
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
One of the biggest stories in museum-ery came out this week, as the plans for the Contemporary Art Museum...

Winner Electrolux Design Lab '07
Frame Magazine
Hungarian design student Levente Szabó wins the [link=http://www.electrolux.com/designlab/]Electrolux Design Lab 2007[/link] award with his washing machine.

Matthew Lenning Gives Bon Appétit a New Look
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
By way of Crit, we learned that Bon Appétit magazine is in the middle of a big rebranding/redesign effort,...


SYDNEY PLANS TO GREEN THE CITY’S ROOFS
Jeremy in Inhabitat
If Sydney-based architect Tone Wheeler gets his way, the Australian metropolis will soon be sporting brand-new rooftop playgrounds and open space areas as a means to green the city. How? By greening every single roof in Sydney! (more…)

 
Still Time to Give WC Book as a Holiday Gift

WorldChanging Team in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
A little more than a year ago, we asked for your help in putting the Worldchanging book at the top of the Amazon.com charts, explaining that a big, optimistic book on serious subjects from a smaller publisher was unlikely to survive long enough to make a difference unless readers showed that the book had an audience. Together we succeeded. We didn't just put it on the best-seller lists: over the last year, the book has really taken off, garnering hundreds of rave reviews, being adopted as a textbook in college classes, being translated into other languages...

December 5th, 2007

Back Alleys Up Front
Chris in Brand Avenue
The City of Chicago has unveiled a far-reaching and thoughtful plan to "green" its back alleys--all 1900 miles of them. Overlooked but essential components of the city's urban grid, the soon-to-be transformed alleys constitute one of the biggest streetscape overhauls in the country, ever: If this were any other city, perhaps it would not matter what kind of roadway was underfoot in the back alleys around town. But with nearly 2,000 miles of small service streets bisecting blocks from the North Side to the South Side, Chicago is the alley capital of America. In its alleys, city officials say, it has the paved equivalent of five midsize airports....

dairy house, charlotte skene catling
Justin in materialicious
Dairy House, Somerset, England. Winner of an award from the Royal Institute of British Architects for regional architecture in 2007: This architectural delight involved the creative conversion of an old rural dairy into a five bedroom house. Using local labour and materials, the house is clad in estate oak, stack-dried in the farmyard: a technique that suggests the design, raw planks separated by spacers allowing air circulation. The structural expression between old and new creates a 2-storey steel and glass threshold up to the roof valley gutter. It is only as the visitor climbs the stair into the extension that the sectional manipulation of the house on the side of a hill is apparent; the first floor landing expands through a glass wall to an indented court holding a rock enclosed spa-pool.

floating boathouse and sleeping cottage, mos office
Justin in materialicious
Floating Boathouse and Sleeping Cottage, on an island in Lake Huron, Ontario, Canada. Back in June I wrote a post on this floating boathouse, and I was lamenting that I had no idea who designed and built it, nor even where it was. Troll around the Interweb long enough, it’s amazing what you’ll find…. Michael Meredith and Hilary Sample of MOS designed this floating boathouse and the sleeping cottage as part of a ‘master plan’ - not shown is the existing (?) main house. I’ve been up in that area before - it’s gorgeous!
First up is the boathouse, then the sleeping cottage, then the photos from the original post. All links are included at the end of this post, including the link to the Flickr slideshow detailing the build of the boathouse. Lots of photos…. Enjoy.

SOLARA: CA’s First Solar-powered Apartment Community
Ali in Inhabitat
A new apartment community in San Diego County is proving that green is both beautiful and affordable. SOLARA is a part of a mixed-use development from Community Housing Works that includes 56 fully solar-powered homes. Sun power is only a part of this smart green growth development which also features energy-efficient designs, healthy materials, water conserving equipment, and high recycled content throughout - even in the community art installations.

AIA Center Opens With Yeon Exhibit
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
After a series of delays that saw its original early-fall opening pushed back, the new AIA/Portland Center for Architecture is throwing open the doors of its new Pearl District home at NW 11th and Flanders. The first exhibit will be a retrospective on John Yeon, who ranks with Pietro Belluschi, A.E. Doyle and John Storrs among the top Portland architects of the 20th Century. Unlike those designers, however, Yeon's principal focus was houses. But Yeon certainly made his mark there. Throughout Portland and the Oregon coast are several gems he designed. Organized by Randy Gragg, the former Oregonianarchitecture critic and founding editor of the new Portland Spacesmagazine making its debut in January, this AIA/CFA exhibit is based largely on Yeon's 1977 retrospective at the Portland Art Museum. (Wow, they used to do exhibits on design at PAM?)

Auralab gets Labtop-Rendering and Luxigon.
Christoph, anArchitecture in anArchitecture
Auralab has done visualizations for OMA, HdM, Rex and many more. They are famous for their gloomy but poetic style.
After seven years of fruitful collaboration, Thomas Series and Eric de Broches des Combes, cofounders of the architectural-rendering firm Auralab, decided to go separate and open two new offices, Labtop and Luxigon....

The Space of the Book
Geoff Manaugh in BLDGBLOG
A bookshop constructed inside a converted Dominican church in Maastricht has won an architectural interiors prize. The project, by Merkz+Girod Architects, places "a two-story structure in black steel on one side, where the books are kept." This "combination of book complex and church interior [was] deemed particularly successful" by the competition jury.

Can Africa’s Sun Provide Power for Europe?
Emily in Inhabitat
Proving that we really are all in this together, Europe is considering plans to spend more than £5 billion on a system of large solar power stations in North Africa. This proposed solar power plan could provide the EU with a sixth of its electricity needs, and, as a bonus, provide fresh water to African nations. Though Europe would be the beneficiary, the panels and power stations would be placed along the Mediterranean desert shores of northern Africa and the Middle East, with the electricity transmitted via underwater cables to EU nations.

Eye Candy: The City Shrinker
architecture.MNP
So be honest, my ninjas - how many of you had to take a second look to be sure that this wasn’t a photograph of a model? Pretty siiick, right? Welcome to the world of Ben Thomas, AKA the City Shrinker - a photographer who’s goal is to force you to question the way you perceive your surroundings. My aim is to give that feeling of newness with each shot I take. My method is to take what was once large and shrink it down to model size. To take the familiar and get you thinking even if for a second “wait a minute, is that…”

Big Wheel thrills
Catriona Potts in CONTINUITY IN ARCHITECTURE
The post millennium trend for erecting a big wheel in the centre of provincial towns has finally reached Preston. This one is positioned on the Flag Market, immediately in front of the Harris. It provides spectacular views across the city on the way up and on the way down, an intimate examination...

Building Smashes Wrecking Ball: Jarvis Hunt's 1927 Lake Shore Athletic Club Survives

Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
In a signature victory for preservationists and independent 42nd ward alderman Brendan Reilly, both Crain's Chicago Business and the Sun-Times David Roeder are reporting that Northwestern University has struck a deal for Integrated Development Group LLC to acquire the former Lake Shore Athletic Club, a 1927 work of architect Jarvis Hunt. Back in April, the University had filed for a permit to demolish the building, in order to sell the cleared site, for a reported $40 million, to Fifield Companies, for the construction of a Lucien Lagrange highrise. The proposal drew the opposition of local community groups SOAR (Streeterville Organization of Active Residents) and the Lake Shore Preservation Group.


 

December 4th, 2007

ar awards for emerging architecture 2007
Justin in materialicious
The annual ar Awards for Emerging Architecture 2007 have been announced. The list includes the winners, highly commended, and commended entries, as well as honourable mentions. The Jury for 2007 was Shirley Blumberg (KPMB, Toronto), Jo Noero (Cape Town), Peter Davey (Former Editor of The Architectural Review), Shuhei Endo (Osaka), Peter Cook (London), and Paul Finch (Editor of The Architectural Review and Chairman). Below are three of my favorites: the Wall House by Frohn & Rojas (posted here a while back), G House by Seiji Kamayachi & Masafumi Harigai, and the amazing Ghost House by DATAR....

We Shape Our Buildings and Afterwards, Our Buildings Shape Us
admin in mirage.studio.7
What did you see? What is above the woman’s head? What element is the backdrop? Researchers showed an identical image to people from East Africa, almost all of those took part in the experiment said the lady was balancing a box on her head, in an African culture where there are few angular visual cues, the group of people is seen sitting under a big tree. On the other hand, Westerners are used to corners and rectangular architecture, thus they are more likely to visualize the group of people in an indoor space and to interpret the rectangular shape above the lady’s head as a window opening.

renovation/addition in gondomar, a-cero

Justin in materialicious
Renovation/addition, Gondomar, Pontevedra, Galicia, Spain. Built: 1999. Find an old stone house, renovate, tack on a gorgeous addition…. A-cero, based in A Coruña and Madrid, does these huge, gorgeous modern mansions (read: mega - expensive) that I can’t really relate to, but I’m digging this smaller project they did, a renovation of and addition to an old stone farmhouse, and I am so inspired. Just look at that kitchen! And those beams! Woof.

Landscape/Portrait: do the statistics used by planners represent real people?
WorldChanging Team in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
Wouldn’t it be great if... the faces and voices of citizens influenced design and regeneration projects – not just abstract data? Does your postcode define who you are? Statistical models of communities based on postcode areas are often used in the design and planning of public services and regeneration projects. Landscape/Portrait confronts people living in the North East with their demographic ‘stereotype’ based on these statistics and asks them ‘Is this you?’. ...

How to end a staircase
Crompton in CONTINUITY IN ARCHITECTURE
Not at all flimsy, the low balustrade makes this octagonal spike seem even bigger than it is. Architect: Alfred Waterhouse, Cheadle Hulme School.

Green.MNP: Building a Straw Bale House
architecture.MNP
This week our green ninja Jessie hits us with the second installment in myninjaplease’s series on straw bale construction: Building A Straw Bale House: Clearing the Site. Here’s an excerpt: When Anissa first laid out the house on a topo drawing of the site (a little $1400 survey cost) she suggested that floor joists over a crawl space might be cheaper than a slab on grade, due to the slope of the site and the amount of fill we would need to bring in for the slab. I was reluctant at first about losing the thermal mass in the slab, but I talked it over with Cadmon and he said that a two inch layer of lightweight concrete over the wooden subfloor works well for holding the radiant heating tubing. He did a top-of-the-head cost estimate that indicated this approach would be a bit cheaper than the slab and fill.

December 3rd, 2007

A Little Good News
By Patricia Pearson - CBC news
The other day, a friend and I were nursing some drinks in a bar andfeeling morose about the latest UN report on climate change. I don’tknow if you caught the warning, about how, if the United States andother major carbon emitters didn’t swiftly subscribe to Kyoto-styleregulations, the world would soon resemble something ‘out of sciencefiction.’
“Only scarier,” I believe is how Indian scientist Rajendra Pachauri put it to the press.

The Craig Hartman Interview - Part I
Brendan in Where
Yesterday, 10:56 PM
The following interview, in which SOM San Francisco design partner Craig W. Hartman, FAIA, discusses his firm's plan for the redevelopment of San Francisco's Treasure Island, was conducted in two parts. The first two questions asked by Where, as well as Mr. Hartman's first answer, have been copied directly from an email exchange. We then switched to a telephone conversation, which begins here with Mr. Hartman's second answer. The interview will be posted in two parts that do not correspond with the change in conversation methods, but rather split the text into two even halves.

le cabanon, a minimal habitat by cyril brulé
Justin in materialicious
Le Cabanon, Villiers-en-Morvan, France. Size: 20m2. Recently I ran across this neat little cabin by Cyril Brulé on Archipedia. I wrote him and asked for more info and photos… Brulé is an architect with Atelier d’Architecture Correia et Associés in Saulieu, in the heart of Burgundy (oh, yes, I’m a tad jealous). He built this little cabin (or, hut, hermitage, cottage, studio, guest house) on his family’s property in nearby Villiers-en-Morvan, and lives in it himself. Like he says: he’s young and lives simply. His living space is really all about ‘outdoors’. What more do you need? Especially in a beautiful place such as that?

Resisting Blackwater Sprawl
Bryan Finoki in Subtopia
You may remember a few months ago a post here on Subtopes about the private military contracting firm Blackwater USA moving in on a rural neighborhood outside San Diego called Potrero. From what I gathered at the time the company was planning a massive base and training facility there near the border and had been using local political players to ramrod the project through hurrying past proper environmental and political process.
Well, Alternate Focus, a non-profit educational media group based in San Diego, has put together a documentary called Blackwater in Potrero, that will be airing all this week on television if you subscribe to Dish Network, and get the Free Speech Channel. If not, it is also available online here.

Canada’s Greenest Building?

Jorge in Inhabitat
Green architecture seems to have taken the world by storm, and not a week goes by without a number of buildings making bold claims as to what their green credentials are. Not wanting to be left out of the global race to have the greenest building ever, seven local non-profit groups have revealed the design for the Maison du développement durable (Sustainable Development House), which they claim will be Canada’s greenest building.

Finding Internships a Challenge for LA Students
ASLA.org - The Dirt
This letter from ASLA National Student Representative Paul Fusco appears in the latest issue of LAND Online. Please let your voice be heard by using the comment system below. It is starting to get to that time of the year again when students are looking to apply for internships in their field of study for the upcoming summer. It also becomes a busy time for firms looking for that ideal intern. Their search through all the applications can become a daunting task. What catches their attention?
In my research I have been trying to zero in on the key components for a dynamic resume, cover letter, and portfolio. These are probably the most important items you need to address when applying for an intern position. The first impression of who you are definitely comes into play. Added to the physical application is the interview, which too can be nerve-racking.

Notes on Competitions
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
It seems like a host of design competitions, both actual ones and those merely in the talking stage, have come up a lot lately. In today’s Oregonian , Eric Mortenson reports on a new competition sponsored by Metro, “Integrating Habitats”, to generate ideas and designs that result in green clusters of development, not just green buildings. The competition has already attracted 234 entries from 10 countries, Mortenson reports, with a respected jury that includes local developer Jim Winkler, German architect Stefan Behnisch, and Metropolis magazine editor Susan Szenasy.

Industrial Ruins in Eastern Europe and the Far East.
Christoph, anArchitecture in anArchitecture
Whether in Poland, Romania or former East Germany – or in Russia, China or Mongolia: Abandoned mines, foundries and coking plants tell stories that reflect the fate and identity of entire regions and their inhabitants. The Leopold Museum in the MQ Vienna is featuring a photo exhibition of Christoph Lingg showing industrial Ruins in Eastern Europe and the Far East.

loq•kit: the snap-together house
Justin in materialicious
Loq•kit is a fascinating proposed system of mass-produced house parts by architect Patrick Freet, which won 2nd place in a recent C2C Home Competition, and while the system is still being developed I feel it’s worthy of a closer look. So I asked my friend, architect Greg La Vardera (see his ad in the sidebar) to give us all his take on it.

Thinglink: what are the true environmental costs?
WorldChanging Team in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
Today, 11:28 AM
[DOTT 07 explores how to tackle big problems by blending leading-edge design thinking with insights from local people involved in grassroots innovation in Northeast England. We're excited to be running 14 days of excerpts from the project's amazing book Wouldn't It Be Great If.... -Alex] Every product that enters our lives has a hidden history - an invisible 'rucksack' containing huge quantities of wasted or lost materials used in its production, transport, use and disposal....

acrylic house, takeshi hosaka architects
Justin in materialicious
Acrylic House, Fuji Kawaguchiko-machi, Minamitsuru-gun, Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. Size: 103.09m2. Built: 2006-2007.

3form: Best Installation Contest
architecture.MNP
3form, the material manufacturer, is currently running a ‘best installation contest‘, with 114 entries [to date] on which visitors can vote. An MNP reader pointed the contest out to us, and singled out a project by Menefee+Winer Architects in particular: The Light Bridge. The translucent footbridge was constructed of 3form’s Chroma material [supported by a Unistrut structure] - built in Menefee+Winer’s office as a connection between the office’s lounge + library, suspended above a staircase. Looks pretty ill....

New Museum of Contemporary Art Building Review Bonanza
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Lots upon lots being written this weekend as the brand new home of the New Museum of Contemporary Art opened its shiny doors on Saturday morning. To avoid our usual gibberish about nothing in particular (specifically when it comes to this writer), we thought we'd just pick a couple of select words from the bigger news outlets and give you a brief overview of the largely positive reviews of the building, designed by the firm, Sanna, in Japan.

Gary Leonard: PHOENIX
architecture.MNP
On Thursday, December 13th the galleries of downtown Los Angeles will celebrate the final Art Walk of 2007 - featuring the unveiling of Gary Leonard’s first exhibition of large-scale photographs, entitled PHOENIX, at Colori Kitchen [popular South Park trattoria of longtime Ca’Brea chef Luigi Barducci Contessi]. The project is a series of architectural images documenting the 21st Century transformation of downtown LA. Hundreds of Leonard’s small-scale photographs will on display/for sale at his nearby gallery.

It's a Gaudiful Life - December Architectural Events
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
Today, 1:21 AM
"But they built the cathedral, Clarence - I've seen pictures!" "No, George they never finished that cathedral. They haven't finished it to this day. Remember, you were never born. So there was no one to save him from getting run over by that tram." George ran the back of his hand across his mouth, as he was prone to do in times of great stress. "I just don't understand, Clarence, I just don't . . . wait a second, 1926. That's when I was working for Mr. Gower! I stopped him from writing that bum prescription that would have poisoned that kid. Goshdarnit, you showed me that yourself, Clarence - why, I was just a kid, myself. And a kid in Bedford Falls, don't forget.

 

December 2nd, 2007

The Hudson 5
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
A couple weeks ago the MTA publicly released the five design proposals responding to its RFP for the Hudson Rail Yards, a 26-acre tract of land in Midtown Manhattan extending west of 10th Avenue to the Hudson River and bounded by 30th Street to the south and 33rd Street to the north. Friday I ran through the exhibition currently on display next to Grand Central Terminal to see how these five developer/urban/architect/landscape teams responded to the mega-site.


Vital Signs: when will our region be sustainable?
WorldChanging Team in WorldChanging: Tools, Models and Ideas for Building a Bright Green Future
[DOTT 07 was an incredible exploration into tackling big problems by blending leading-edge design thinking with insights from local people involved in grassroots innovation in Northeast England. We're excited to be running 14 days of excerpts from the project's amazing book. How will we know when our region is 'sustainable'?...

 


 

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 June 2008 01:48