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May 08 - Blog Articles - Page 4 Print E-mail
Monday, 31 March 2008 19:00

May 23rd, 2008

Event Guide: Concrete Toronto Music
Shawn Micallef in Spacing Toronto • understanding the urban landscape
The good Toronto boosters at the Music Gallery have two special shows inspired by the Concrete Toronto book. On Sunday May 25 & Sunday June 1 Toronto musicians will come together to make music about some of Toronto concrete buildings. Not since the Talking Heads put out “More songs about buildings and food” has architecture been so sonically sexy. The Music Gallery and zoilus.com present CONCRETE TORONTO MUSIC As part of the soundaXis Festival

Portland Spaces Magazine Announces 'Root Awards'
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
Portland Spaces magazine has announced a new set of design and architecture awards, called the "Root Awards: Portland Design from the Ground Up." Awards will be given out in more than 20 categories, including single family homes, individual rooms, commercial offices and restaurant interiors. The winners will be featured in the magazine's November/December issue this fall. Winners will be decided by a four-person jury: Karrie Jacobs, founder of Dwell magazine and architecture/urban planning critic for New York magazine, the New York Times, and Metropolis; Katherine Lambert - leading advocate of ecological design, founding principal of Metropolitan Architectural Practice, and chair of interior design and professor of visual studies at the California College of the Arts; and Iris Harrell - president and founder of Harrell Remodeling in San Francisco.

House V / 3LHD
David Basulto in Arch Daily
House “V” was designed in order to satisfy the needs of a family. Applying communication between the common and individual rooms, the facilities and functions of the space have been connected into a single unit that creates a comfortable living area for a family.

flats by onion flats collective, philadelphia
lavardera in materialicious
E Flats are an infill town house development in Philadelphia - one of the great townhouse cities of america. These consist of 4 units divided between the two buildings, and incorporate characteristics that are typical of many Philadelphia row homes - the gated passage to the rear gardens being one of the most peculiar local conditions that you can see they have followed in this contemporary structure.

Cliffside Shipping Container Home in New Zealand
Mike Chino in Inhabitat
We’re always excited to see architects reuse industrial materials, and in the prefab world there’s no match for the simplicity, low cost, and customization capabilities of the stalwart shipping container. We’ve covered several ways that architects have up-cycled the durable containers into industrial-chic living spaces, and this incredible home in Wellington, New Zealand, is the latest container redux to catch our eye. Composed of three slate grey containers stacked up like blocks beside a hilltop, it strikes the perfect balance between ruggedly engineered construction and clean modern form.

ARCHITECTURE FETISH: Bungalow Cool
Thomas Wicks in Spacing Toronto • understanding the urban landscape
Toronto is a city of bungalows. Though we’d fancy ourselves as a city of tall and thin Victorians, tightly packed together on narrow streets, Toronto spreads low and humbly. Once you leave the older parts of the city and drive through the sprawling post-war neighbourhoods of Etobicoke, North York and Scarborough, more likely than not all you’ll see are neatly spaced bungalows row after row (with groupings of apartment towers thrown in).

Frexport Headquarters / CC Arquitectos
Nico Saieh in Arch Daily
This project integrates 4 vital members, the first and most important, our client; who originated the concept and idea. Having the architectonic program, we attempted to give form to the rhetoric of the promenades in the countryside, idea that had to be implicit in the building. The gardens therefore became the soul of the project introducing the third member, the landscaper. The green palette of vegetation and the force of natural stone were the elements that marked the design of this landscape, leaving in its steps all the crops that constitute the company’s line of production.

Endangered Nabes
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
National Trust for Historic Preservation's 2008 11 Most Endangered Places -- aimed at increasing exposure to particular areas and preservation in general -- includes the usual variety of buildings, "natural" features, and neighborhoods. Of the last, one each are in my current and previous homes, New York and Chicago. The Lower East Side is characterized as New York City's "first home for waves of immigrants since the 18th century...[as] new hotels and condominium towers are being erected across the area, looming large over the original tenement streetscape."

PREFAB FRIDAY: Focus House in London by BERE Architects
Cate Trotter in Inhabitat
Added to an end-of-terrace house in North London, Focus House is a delightful prefabricated eco-home for a family of five. Bere Architects, the firm behind the design, used PassivHaus principles to inform their process. The world’s leading energy efficiency standard, Passivhaus recognizes buildings that are so energy efficient all they need is a small electric heater. Focus House is a unique design that embodies the prefab principles of waste reduction and efficiency, and raises the bar on energy-efficient building design.

Innovative Abōd Takes Small Project Award
Preston D K in Jetson Green
The fulcrum of the green building revolution, I think, is conservation and living happily with less.  It'll be interesting to see how we get there, to see if we can live lighter.  In the meantime, I like to monitor small projects to see what piques the interest of crowds.  Lately Abōd® has been getting some quality attention.  Abōd was honored by the AIA this year with a Small Project Award.  The AIA explained the concept: "The design goal was to develop a breakthrough in value-engineered lowest cost housing with an extensive array of add-on options to personalize each home. The resulting design incorporating the Catenary arch is simple and structurally sound but also aesthetically pleasing and can be built by 4 people in just one day with only a screwdriver and an awl."

May 22nd, 2008

Seamless
Michelle Linden in Atelier A+D
These projects by Blasen Landscape Architecture are amazing examples of a seamless blend of architecture and landscape. I'm really in love with the clean lines, simple use of materials, and plant selection (I'm not really into flowery designs).

Will Bruder Beaming Over Wright Exhibit at His Nevada Museum of Art
mediabistro.com: UnBeige
Possibly just of interest to us, but we enjoyed Scott Sonner's story about Will Bruder beaming about the traveling "Frank Lloyd Wright and the House Beautiful" exhibit coming to the Nevada Museum of Art, a museum he designed after being an uber-Wright fan all his life. He even claims that when he was commissioned to build the host museum in Reno years ago, he designed it to work with a lot of Wright-esque principles, namely working to blend everything inside and outside the museum into one seamless entity.

House in Gerês / Graça Correia y Roberto Ragazzi
Nico Saieh in Arch Daily
The project of this house foresees both to reconstruct and augment a ruin into a weekend retreat at a plot with extraordinary morphological characteristics, within Cavado River and its tributary. The plot, of 4.060m2, is located in a protected natural area and has for conditions a concrete construction and the preservation of all trees. The constructive capacity was given by the existing ruin. Since the first visit of the site it was clear we were dealing with a delicate project. The project placement on the plot was essential given that the surroundings were the main reference for the construction. Having practiced water-ski for 20 years, the river grounds the weekend house for the clients. For them, the exceptional outlook one enjoys should be an element of the house; for us, architects, should be an evident inside space value, but also, the opposite concern was relevant - the house could only act as a significant element on the landscape.

Design Transitivity and Planning Reconstruction
Preston D K in Jetson Green
I was blown away by Alberto Mozó's simple and clean design for the Edificio BIP Computers building in Santiago de Chile.  It's an unassuming three-story structure built on a lot that's zoned to allow a larger structure of up to twelve stories in height.  Knowing that the building may not last very long (due to the favorable location and zoning), the design makes use of standard-sized, laminated timber beams that can be dismounted and used to reconstruct the entire building somewhere else.  Mozo calls the idea "transitivity" -- designing structures that can be easily broken down and reconstructed elsewhere.

New York City is the place where . . . (Part I)
Shawn Micallef in Spacing Toronto • understanding the urban landscape
Five days in New York City after a four year absence is like an urban elixir full of steroids that make hours and miles of exploration seem inconsequential. Keep going, there is more on the next block. And more, and more. It’s easy to forget how big the city is, but it’s really, really big. And solid, and heavy, and thick, and old. Toronto is all those things to a degree, but coming back home, the initial feeling is that this great city seems almost light in comparison. American steel and concrete seem thicker and heavier than it ought to be, but it is. There are so many great buildings in New York that magnificent ones, like the building above, become nondescript.

Bjarke Ingels presents The BIG CPH Experiment
admin in mirage.studio.7
On occasion of the London Festival of Architecture 2008 (www.lfa2008.org), Storefront will be opening its first temporary outpost in Europe on Exhibition Road, London. The opening party will be held on June 20 and the exhibition will remain open until July 27. The BIG CPH Experiment, an exhibition that inaugurated at Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York in October 2007, presents a series of recent design projects and large-scale models by the Copenhagen-based architecture practice BIG/Bjarke Ingels Group. The centerpiece of the exhibition is a model of the LEGO Towers made out of 250,000 LEGO bricks.

May 21st, 2008

DvG Architecten
Michelle Linden in Atelier A+D
This project, the Nederlands Embassy in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia by Dick van Gameren, was one of the most recent winners of the Aga Khan award... its a pretty interesting project. While the red concrete structure clearly has roots in the African dirt, its design and form is Dutch in every way. his apartment complex is some serious adaptive reuse... the complex spreads across an Amsterdam site previously occupied by a sewage treatment plant, to the extent that it even pierces an old concrete sediment drum. I'm not sure if I could get over the idea of living in a sediment drum... but if someone can, more power to them!

Today's archidose #213
John in A Daily Dose of Architecture
Medieval and Modern, originally uploaded by richardr. View of Selfridges in Birmingham, England by Future Systems (2003), with St. Martin's in the distance. Reminds me of a book cover...

Lucien's Hanging Chads
Lynn Becker in ArchitectureChicago PLUS
The Elysian Chicago is architect Lucien Lagrange's latest and greatest let's-all-crawl-back-into-the-womb extravaganza, a 60 story, 686 foot-tall French Second Empire meets condo gulch confection. The ultra high-end project (two residences per floor) comes complete with its own quarter-block sized carriage court, empowering residents' fantasies of being aristocrats in the time of Napoleon the Third. (Don't trip over the Commune.) The rendering here is cribbed from skyscraperpage.com's coverage of the project, which includes extended (38 pages and counting), impassioned discussion of its merits. For a brief period of time you can see, as pictured here, the intriguing structural frame that will support the courtyard's mansard roof, in one of project's rare fleeting displays of architectural honesty.

Old Golf Course Park?
Josh Hume in Spacing Toronto • understanding the urban landscape
A new public park is planned as part of the Toronto Community Housing Corporation’s residential development that will soon rise on the land directly east of Fort York. Construction is slated to begin in June, 2009, and though the park component will not be completed until at least 2011, planners, developers and heritage groups have already started to discuss potential names for the park. Most of the names being considered point to the historical significance of the site, as only in its most recent incarnation was this a fallow and undistinguished tract of land, (aside from its brief tenure as a nine-hole golf course). Originally, it was part of Toronto’s shoreline, and the very spot where Garrison Creek met Lake Ontario. It was the location of the original Fort York structures burned down by American forces in 1813 and later the site of the recently unearthed Queen’s Wharf as well as numerous early railway structures.

Seifert House / Bau Kultur
Nico Saieh in Arch Daily
Mrs. Seifert, sixty-three years old and curator of an art gallery, commissioned this house after her previous home, an approximately 150 years old building, burned down. For her new home she demanded a particular requirement - namely, the new house (contrary to her previous one) should fuse with nature in order to give her an immanent feeling of the change of seasons.

Jamison Square Reconsidered
Brian Libby in Portland Architecture
When I wrote last week about Randy Gragg’s interview with Brad Cloepfil, the one issue that seemed controversial, or that readers really seemed to disagree with Brad on, was his position on Jamison Square Park in the Pearl District. “It’s a theme park,” Brad said of Jamison “It’s an urban artifice. You could have done something so much more elegant.” He told Randy that the Peter Walker design tried too hard to program a particular type of setting: one of children, families and dogs frolicking near the fountain. Cloepfil lives in the Pearl District near Jamison, but he said he completely avoids the park. However, an overwhelming majority of people whom I’ve talked to and commented here seem to like this Peter Walker-designed landscape a lot. “I like Cloepfil but he is wide off the mark on Jamison Square,” one commenter said. “Jamison Square is an extremely succesful urban space. In my mind it is incredible how well it functions.”

Virgina Plat House - exterior complete
lavardera in LamiDesign Modern House Plan Blog
A few new photos from the owner of the Virginia Plat House today. The siding is all done and the exterior more or less finished. The interior work is beginning now. Here is the master bedroom side of the house. I liked this photo because it gives you a good look at the side overhang rafters. They did a good job with this detail which is always gratifying to see. You can also catch a glimpse of the creek in the distance - what a great setting for this house. There are three new photos of the house posted at the flickr set for this project. Also remember to look at the LamiDesign Flickr photo pool to see all the photos from customers documenting the house designs under construction. Our thanks go out to them for sharing their projects with us.

Sustainable Wood Light Sculptures by Nori Morimoto
Ali Kriscenski in Inhabitat
Nori Morimoto’s light sculptures were on display at ICFF in a stunning booth that showcased this master craftsman’s attention to delicate details. Crafted from local, sustainably harvested wood from around his Vermont wood working studio, Morimoto’s work was a truly refreshing sustainable design find at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair this past weekend.

LTLArchitects
Young in Architecture
"Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis (LTL) is an innovative, award-winning architecture partnership founded in 1997 by Paul Lewis, Marc Tsurumaki and David J. Lewis, located in New York City. LTL actively pursues a diverse range of work, from large scale academic and cultural buildings to interior architecture to competitions. LTL's approach is to realize inventive solutions that turn the very constraints of each project into the design trajectory, exploring overlaps between space, program, form, budget and materials. The firm's work has been extensively published and exhibited internationally. LTL Architects received the 2007 National Design Award for Interior Architecture from the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum and was selected as one of six American architectural firms featured in the U.S. Pavilion at the 2004 Venice Architecture Biennale. In addition, LTL was included in the 2000 National Design Triennial at the Cooper-Hewitt and was selected in December 2000 by Architectural Record as one of ten firms representing a Vanguard in Contemporary Architecture.

Pop Pergola
Snell in Lost At E Minor: Music, illustration, art, photography and more
Designed by landscape architects Claude Cormier, Pergola is a pop art piece comprised of 90,000 plastic balls arranged in the form of a wisteria bloom at Le Havre City Hall. A tribute to Monet, much of whose work featured wisteria, the piece works with an existing vine, creating an interesting juxtaposition between the artificial and the natural.

Forget the bulb: world’s first illuminating glass
Cate Trotter in Inhabitat
Eco-friendly lightbulbs are an energy efficient step in the right direction, but it could be that the bulb’s days are numbered. First we had light-emitting wallpaper, and now Saazs’ light-emitting glass plates. Using planilum technology, these plates are the world’s first active light-emitting glass. Incorporated into shelves and tables, the technology provides beautiful, understated lighting for homes and offices.

First Off-Grid Building in San Francisco Coming Soon!
Preston D K in Jetson Green
Last month, Lorax Development broke ground on a building that's being billed as the first off-grid building in San Francisco.  At 1400 sf, The Eco Center is certainly an example of the future of green buildings -- buildings that are off-grid and sustainable.  The Eco Center is a $1.5 million environmental education center that will be located in McLaren Park.  Designed by Toby Long Design for the non-profit Literacy for Environmental Justice (LEJ), when it opens in the fall, it will be the first building in San Francisco, purportedly, to recycle its own wastewater.  Additionally, the off-grid center will have solar panels and an extensive green roof.

AmCork, Affordable and Beautiful Cork Flooring Option
Sarah Roe in Jetson Green
Amcork, a Texas based company, offers an incredible variety of cork flooring and wall covering options.  Their flooring is available in floating floor planks (12"x36") and glue-down parquet tiles (12"x12").  Wall tiles are 12"x24" size.  There are two things that set this company apart from others that I have found: price and style.  Amcork has 21 colors of wall tiles and 25 colors of flooring available. The colors and textures range from almost solids, such as "blue snow", to "bark", a natural cork color with large waves and chunks of patterns that really do resemble the bark of a tree.  Pricing starts at $2.50 psf and ranges up to about $5.50.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 August 2008 02:03
 
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