News
Reiser + Umemoto Winning Entry for the Kaohsiung Port Terminal Competition Print E-mail
Tuesday, 21 December 2010 10:38
Model-ElevationReiser + Umemoto (RUR) has been awarded First Prize in the international competition for a new Port and Cruise Service Center in the city of Kaohsiung in southern Taiwan, ROC.

For this project, RUR will partner with local architects Fei and Cheng and Associates (Taipei), with whom they are also working on their first-place winning Taipei Pop Music Center project. Also on the project team is Structural Engineer Ysrael A. Seinuk, PC (New York); Reiser + Umemoto and Ysrael A. Seinuk also collaborated on their O-14 office tower, which is currently nearing completion in Dubai, UAE. Rounding out the team in other engineering disciplines is ARUP Hong Kong.

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In construction: HOK’s Dali Museum, in St. Petersburg, Florida Print E-mail
Tuesday, 21 December 2010 08:45
HOK-Dali-Museum-03With he opening for the project planned for January 11th, we wanted to share with our readers photographs of the work during construction, that we have recently received, along with some explanation that sheds the light about HOK's concept. The photographs give a glimpse of the architects and builders attention to details, and how the ideas on paper are translating into reality.

A cultural and artistic renaissance has officially surfaced among the white-capped waves and sailboats that rock gently along the waterfront in downtown St. Petersburg, Fla. The understated, conservative ambiance of the city’s past has quietly drifted out with the tide in sharp contrast to the now-apparent wave of change rising here.
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Architecture Meets Performing Arts in Taipei Print E-mail
Thursday, 16 December 2010 08:21


Fragment of the opening performance captured nymph
violin: mr. wang
choreography: patricia meneses and lucas kao
video: francisco giménez carbó

As part of the intervention, Silent Garden mimetizes with the sound housed in its interior, Semi No Koe participating on the same poetic sound and visual architectures.

Sound piece Semi No Koe by Manuel Rocha Iturbide


Designed by Studio Patricia Meneses, the project is an architectural and landscape intervention on the surroundings of the Fine Art Museum of Taipei, as part of the 2010 Taipei Horticulture and Flora Expo.

While the exhibition that opened on the 6th of November will be staying on for six months, Silent Garden will remain as a permanent work becoming a public space of the city of Taipei.

Here is how its creators see it:

Nothing ever got me,
nothing ever took me,
but the strings of the violin,
while the worm knitted
its refuge to metamorphose.

The project is based on extracting the essence of poetry kept in nature, nature poems.

The silk worm, an insect capable to create its own space to become a butterfly, through its own fluids, building a perfect organic refuge to live its metamorphosis.


Last Updated on Thursday, 16 December 2010 09:20
 
AIA: Continued Preference for Housing Options Closer to Transportation and Commercial Opportunities Print E-mail
Tuesday, 07 December 2010 14:21
Slow housing market and emphasis on access to job opportunities changing location preferences

Over the last several years there has been increasing demand for housing options within close proximity to public transit, employment centers, retail and entertainment options, and access to open space for recreation. Houses with porches that allow for more neighborhood connection, durable and low-maintenance products for home exteriors, sustainable features and solar reflective roofs also remain popular.

The housing and economic downturn, along with the growing number of immigrant households, has led to a rise demand for multi-generational housing. 



Residential architecture firms continue to report weak business conditions, but with remodeling activity showing a sharp increase over the same period a year ago. These findings are from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Home Design Trends Survey for the third quarter of 2010 that focused on community and neighborhood design.



“There are a number of factors at play that have encouraged a shift towards smaller infill projects,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. “There has been a resurgence in urban living in general, but economic realities like high foreclosure rates, increased commuting time and costs, and a renewed interest in affordability are key drivers in altering the residential real estate landscape.”

Baker added, “Recently, numerous organizations have issued reports linking the health benefits of living in transit-oriented communities. There is a strong correlation between a design strategy tailored towards access to public transportation and job centers that can reduce sprawl, dependence on automobiles and foreign oil, encourages physical activity and leads to an overall more vibrant and healthy community.”

AIA Home Design Trends Survey highlights

Community design elements
2010
2009
Infill development
65%
69%
Access to public transportation
58%
55%
Mixed-use facility
53%
48%
Dedicated open space
47%
45%
Multigenerational housing
47%
41%
Popular Home Exteriors Features


Durable exterior materials
75%
75%
Porches
57%
53%
Sustainable roofing
52%
47%
Solar reflective roofs
39%
n/a
Tubular skylights
30%
24%

(% respond. report. popularity of feature “increasing” minus % report. “decreasing”; Q3)

Housing market business conditions


The residential market continues to struggle. The national billings index was 42 for the third quarter of 2010 (any score below 50 indicates a decline in activity), up slightly from the previous quarter’s mark of 41. Inquiries for new projects were 49, showing minimal improvement compared to the score of 47 in the second quarter of the year.

Specific construction segments
2010
2009
Kitchen and bath remodeling
43%
27%
Additions / alterations
42%
26%
First-time buyer / affordable home market
-35%
-2%
Move-up home market
-34%
-30%
Townhouse / condo market
-39%
-43%
Custom / luxury home market
-43%
-48%
Second / vacation home
-65%
-70%


(% of respondents reporting sector “improving” minus % reporting “weakening”; Q3)

About the AIA Home Design Trends Survey
The AIA Home Design Trend Survey is conducted quarterly with a panel of over 500 architecture firms that concentrate their practice in the residential sector. Residential architects are design leaders in shaping how homes function, look, and integrate into communities and this survey helps to identify emerging trends in the housing marketplace. Business conditions are also monitored on a quarterly basis. Future surveys will focus on kitchen and bath trends (February 2011), overall home layout and use (June 2011), and specialty rooms and systems (September 2011).
Last Updated on Tuesday, 07 December 2010 15:42
 
HOK Designs NASA’s Johnson Space Center Print E-mail
Monday, 06 December 2010 13:28

HOK's design for NASA's Building 20 at Johnson Space Center in Houston is a three-story 83,000-sq.ft contemporary office facility that has just achieved LEED® Platinum certification. Building 20 accommodates up to 520 employees in mostly open office space with access to daylight and views, and establishes a new, more collaborative workplace paradigm for NASA.
HOK-Johnson-01“NASA’s new green office building is designed to be 57 percent more energy efficient than a typical office building,” says Daniel Mills, HOK sustainability manager. In addition to cutting energy and water consumption and reducing waste, Building 20 will serve as a public showcase for high-performance, environmentally sound building design and construction at the Johnson Space Center.
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