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HOK to Design the Urban Living Laboratory Print E-mail
Monday, 10 January 2011 09:59

Development Focuses on Sustainable Urban Living

HOK is designing a new type of sustainable research development intended to leave a lasting legacy.

The Urban Living Laboratory, a 73-acre, 1.2 million-sq.-ft. mixed-use development that sits on a 240-acre parcel of land owned by the Texas A&M University System and located in north Dallas.

HOK
Courtesy of HOK




Last Updated on Monday, 10 January 2011 10:08
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MAD designs China Wood Sculpture Museum in Harbin Print E-mail
Monday, 10 January 2011 08:25
Beijing based architecture firm, MAD, unveiled yesterday their new museum for Chinese wood sculptures in Harbin. As the main city of Northern China, Harbin is in the process of defining itself as a regional hub for the arts at a time when the historic city is rapidly expanding.
MAD-NMWS-02Inspired by the unique local winter landscapes, the museum is a contrast between the elegance of nature and the speed of daily life. Its 200 meter long body is shaped as a frozen fluid that reflects and explores the relation between the building and the environment.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 11 January 2011 09:32
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The International Living Building Institute Announces the Spanish Translation of the Living Building Challenge (Desafio del Edificio Vivo) Print E-mail
Wednesday, 05 January 2011 10:40
The International Living Building Institute’s partners at Mexico’s Universidad Iberoamericana S.C. have set the foundation for Living Buildings, Sites and Communities in Mexico and other Spanish-speaking countries with a Spanish translation of the Living Building Challenge.

The International Living Building Institute (www.ilbi.org) today released the first translation of the Living Building ChallengeSM thanks to the work of faculty in the Universidad Iberoamericana, S.C.’s Department of Architecture (http://www.arquitectura.uia.mx/) and their industry partners in Mexico City. This Spanish language version is freely available online (www.ilbi.org/countries/mexico) and will help support the development of Living Buildings in Spanish-speaking regions.

In October 2009, the International Living Building Institute began talks with building industry leaders in Mexico City who wished to create a formal presence for the Living Building Challenge throughout the country. Since that time, momentum has grown to support the formation of the Living Building Institute of Mexico.

“With its extensive multidisciplinary experience, the Department of Architecture at Universidad Iberoamericana put together a core team with faculty members to carry out an unprecedented, transparent facilitated charrette to discuss how to form a Mexican Living Building Institute,” comments Department Director, Carolyn Aguilar Dubose, who was instrumental in the translation work and is a key leader in the efforts to formalize the Living Building Institute of Mexico. She noted that the Living Building Institute of Mexico will “support the evaluation of designs, construction and the life-long maintenance of Living Building Challenge projects… The charrette revealed that NGOs, government officials, educators and a diverse array of professionals believe in the Living Building Challenge’s capacity to become local and are committed to its emphasis not only on efficiency, but also on health and beauty.”

Since its launch in 2006, the Living Building Challenge has gained momentum around the world and achieved recognition as the world’s most rigorous green building performance standard. More than 70 projects are currently registered in France, Canada, Australia and the United States. International organizational partnerships are active in Ireland and Canada, with discussions also underway in Australia and a few other countries. In addition, volunteer Ambassadors are working in at least fourteen countries to motivate a global audience to implement restorative principles in design, construction and building operation, and to create local networks focused on regionally appropriate solutions.

“This standard is designed to be adapted to regional contexts and is a unifying tool, bringing people from many disciplines and cultures together for the first time under one green building standard. Around the globe, architects and developers are working with urban planners and landscape architects, environmentalists and social activists, as well as affordable housing advocates and preservationists to form a visionary pathway to a restorative future,” says Jason F. McLennan, CEO of the International Living Building Institute.

As a 2010 Clinton Global Initiative Commitment Maker, the International Living Building Institute is endeavoring to translate the Living Building Challenge into ten languages. These translations will provide the starting point for Living Building Challenge uptake in additional countries and cultures. The International Living Building Institute will collaborate with in-country experts to ensure that translated versions of the Challenge are culturally appropriate and regionally applicable.


About the International Living Building Institute
Founded in 2009 by the Cascadia Green Building Council, the International Living Building Institute is a non- governmental organization dedicated to the creation of Living Buildings, Sites and Communities in countries around the world. The Living Building Challenge is a philosophy, advocacy tool and certification program that addresses development at all scales and has quickly become the planet’s most advanced green building rating system. www.ilbi.org
Last Updated on Wednesday, 05 January 2011 10:46
 
The AIA Issues Agenda Focusing on Creating Jobs in Design & Construction Print E-mail
Wednesday, 05 January 2011 09:04
The American Institute of Architects today unveiled its top four legislative priorities with the 112th Congress that convenes tomorrow. Each initiative focuses on creating jobs in a design and construction industry that accounts for one in nine dollars of Gross Domestic Product.

“When architects work, the nation builds,” said AIA President Clark Manus, FAIA. “By following these four core principles, Congress has a chance to enact policies that unleash the entrepreneurial spirit of America’s design professionals, create economic growth and rebuild our struggling communities and aging infrastructure.”

The AIA’s top legislative priorities are:

·         Unfreeze Credit, Create Jobs: Thousands of needed construction projects that would employ millions of Americans are on hold because credit is frozen. Banks received billions in federal taxpayer bailouts; now it’s time to ensure those banks lend. Congress should support efforts to reign in regulatory overkill in the wake of the banking crisis by passing legislation such as the Equal Treatment of Covered Bonds Act,, which would create a market for the kind of bond that has been used in Europe for capital projects and is generally more secure than other securitized bonds, like mortgage-backed securities. Advocates say it could unleash a market for sounder, more straightforward financing. The AIA also supports the Capital Access for Main Street Act, which would help prevent large numbers of commercial foreclosures and free up credit to help small business get back to work.


·         Remove Regulatory Burdens That Hold Small Business Back: Small architecture firms and sole practitioners know all too well the burdens of high tax rates and burdensome paperwork.  In 2010, the AIA helped defeat a plan to increase payroll taxes on thousands of small architecture firms that organize as S corporations. Now Congress needs to passthe Small Business Paperwork Mandate Elimination Act, which would repeal the expensive and unneeded new Form 1099 paperwork requirement slipped into the health care reform bill.


·         Jumpstart the Market for Building Retrofits as an Engine of Economic Growth: Across the country, building owners, state and local governments and school districts want to lower energy bills by retrofitting their buildings, but lack the financing to do it. By increasing incentives for efficient building designs and renovations that show real results, Congress can create jobs while securing our energy independence. Congress should increase the Energy Efficient Commercial Building Tax Deduction from the current $1.80sf to $3.00sf.


·         Pass a Transportation Bill to Get our Communities Moving Again: Our current transportation system is broken. Crumbling infrastructure and rising congestion have crippled our nation’s competitiveness, reduced safety, and increased greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, outdated transportation laws and tax policy have slowed projects down, deprived the public of a voice in the planning process, and forced Americans into longer and longer commutes. The current tax incentives for building/real estate activities do not adequately take into account locating developments near transit systems, for example.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 05 January 2011 10:37
 
Erick van Egeraat's Two New Projects in Siberian Region of Khanti-Mansiysk, Russia Print E-mail
Monday, 03 January 2011 08:00

Last month, two projects of Dutch architect Erick van Egeraat officially opened in the Khanti-Mansiysk autonomous region. The Chess-club building in Khanty-Mansiysk and the Vershina trade & entertainment centre in Surgut.
Egeraat-Khanti-Mansiysk-08aEgeraat-Khanti-Mansiysk-09

Last Updated on Monday, 03 January 2011 08:46
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