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Zaha Hadid's Wangjing SOHO Wins Emporis Skyscraper Award

Wangjing SOHO; Beijing, China / Zaha Hadid Architects. Image © Feng Chang
Wangjing SOHO; Beijing, China / Zaha Hadid Architects. Image © Feng Chang

Zaha Hadid ArchitectsWangjing SOHO in Beijing has won the 2014 Emporis Skyscraper Award. Chosen by an international panel of experts from more than 300 skyscrapers, the three-tower 200-meter-tall development is the first skyscraper in China to ever win the award. The judges were impressed by its "excellent energy efficiency and its distinctive design, which gives the complex a harmonious and organic momentum."

Each year, the Emporis Award honors the world's best new building over 100-meters-tall. Read on to see the top 10 buildings honored this year.

Rafael Viñoly Proposes Twin Residential Towers for Chicago's South Loop

© Rafael Viñoly Architects
© Rafael Viñoly Architects

Rafael Viñoly Architects has presented plans for a two-tower residential project in Chicago's South Loop neighborhood. The phased Crescent Heights development hopes to be home to Chicago's 6th tallest building, rising 829-feet on the south end of Grant Park. If approved, the project would be completed in three phases; the first realizing a 76-story, 792-unit apartment building on the eastern portion of the site. 

Kickstarter Campaign Launches to Fund the Forthcoming 'Real Review'

The Real Estate Architecture Laboratory (REAL) have today announced a Kickstarter campaign in preparation for the launch of their flagship publication, the Real Review. Produced by an independent team of editors and designers, this bi-monthly magazine intends to "revive the review as a writing form" to a general readership within the architectural sphere and its orbital subjects.

The Real Review will be "a printed object of exceptional quality, featuring engaging texts by leading international commentators," alongside providing "a highly visible platform for emerging writers." Confirmed authors at this time include, among others, Assemble, Pier Vittorio Aureli (Dogma, AA), Reinier de Graaf (OMA), Sam Jacob (Sam Jacob Studio), and a rostra of journalists including the Financial Times' architecture critic Edwin Heathcote.

Spotlight: Henry Hobson Richardson

Henry Hobson Richardson (29 September 1838  27 April 1886) was known across North America as the father of the Romanesque Revival. Although he only lived to age 48, Richardson is revered across the northeast United States for his appreciation of classic architecture and is the namesake for Richardsonian Romanesque, a movement he pioneered. Richardson studied engineering at Harvard University, a discipline he abandoned in favour of his interest in architecture.

This 3D-Printed Building by SOM is Powered by a 3D-Printed Car

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) has unveiled their design for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL):  a 3D-printed building powered by a 3D-printed vehicle developed by ORNL. Dubbed AMIE, the project was developed in collaboration with ORNL, University of Tennessee (UT), Clayton Homes, General Electric, Alcoa, NanoPore and Tru-Design. SOM was able to take the design from concept to completion in less than a year.

Combining mobile power with energy-efficient design and photovoltaic (PV) panels, the AMIE presents possibilities for human shelter off-the-grid. Following previous work by SOM, demonstrating the use of 3D printing for complex, organic geometries, the new building combines structure, insulation, air and moisture barriers, and exterior cladding into one shell.

Thomas Phifer and Partners Unveil Design for Warsaw Art Museum and Theatre

Thomas Phifer and Partners has unveiled their design for The Museum of Modern Art and TR Warszawa Theater in Warsaw, Poland. Together, the 15,000 square meter museum, 10,000 square meter theater, infrastructure, and outdoor forum, will compose the largest cultural project in Poland’s recent history.

Inspired by abstract works of art, “the building facades manifest creative life in the city and emphasize the Museum of Modern Art and TR Warszawa’s integral role in the formation of Warsaw’s new cultural center.”

ARCHIPENDIUM 2016 Now Available for Pre-Order

ARCHIPENDIUM 2016 is now available for pre-order (just in time for the holidays). The 366 page tear-off architecture calendar features a new project each day, providing a plethora of building information that illustrates just how the highlighted work's design has helped improved life in cities. ARCHIPENDIUM is the perfect gift for architecture nerds of all types. You can pre-order it, here. Shipping begins October 19, 2015. 

China's First All-Glass Suspension Bridge Opens in Hunan

This (terrifying) 300-meter-long bridge is the first in China to be made of all glass. Suspended 180-meters above ground between two cliffs at Hunan's Shiniuzhai National Geological Park, the Haohan Qiao - Brave Men's Bridge - was originally meant to be wood, before being constructed with 24mm thick glass that is 25 times stronger than normal.

"The bridge we build will stand firm even if tourists are jumping on it," said a worker to China News Service. "The steel frame used to support and encase the glass bridge is also very strong and densely built, so even if a glass is broken, travelers won't fall through."

"Grassroots Cactivism": Using Cacti and Eco-Tourism to Combat Drought in California

Although global warming may only be partially to blame for California’s now four-year, record-breaking drought – intensifying it by 15 to 20 percent, say scientists – the long term implications of the weather phenomenon are a preview of a drier future with less predictable weather patterns.[1] As ecology and architecture begin to share responsibility in the implications of climate change, future solutions will need to balance architectural needs with ecological imperatives. Many designers are accounting for water scarcity in schemes for the drought-stricken state, but only recently have ideas addressed this issue head-on. “Grassroots Cactivism,” an award-winning proposal by Ali Chen, suggests that the drought-tolerant nopales cactus, with a variety of uses, is an ideal candidate for aiding water-conservation in California.

Read on for more about this biological breakthrough in water conservation.

Resort Cafe. Image Courtesy of Ali Chen Cacti Yard Aerial, Day. Image Courtesy of Ali Chen Cacti Pond, Water Treatment Tanks. Image Courtesy of Ali Chen Resort + Cacti Yard Aerial, Sunset. Image Courtesy of Ali Chen

Do You Know About the Secret Apartment at the Top of the Eiffel Tower?

Since opening in 1889, over 250 million people have visited the iconic Eiffel Tower in Paris. A rare experience for most, a trip to the Eiffel Tower includes long queues, beautiful views, and...a visit to Gustave Eiffel's private apartment? Unbeknownst to most 19th century Parisians (save for a privileged few), the tower's celebrated designer built himself a humble little abode 285 meters (935 feet) up the tower. Closed for decades, in recent years the management of the Eiffel Tower have opened Eiffel's apartment to the public, grand piano and all.

Enter Gustave Eiffel's secret apartment after the break

Deborah Berke Named Dean of Yale School of Architecture

Deborah Berke of Deborah Berke Partners has been appointed as the new dean of the Yale School of Architecture. Having served as an adjunct professor at Yale since 1987, Berke will be the first woman to lead the school. She will assume her position on July 1, 2016, during the architecture school's 100th anniversary, succeeding Robert A.M. Stern's 18-year term. 

Foster Among 30 Shortlisted in NASA-Backed Mars Habitat Competition

Foster + Partners has been shortlisted among 30 other finalists in the 3D Printed Habitat Challenge organized by America Makes and NASA. The proposal calls for a 3D printed settlement built by pre-programmed, semi-autonomous robots who use regolith found on Mars' surface to construct dwellings that can house up to four astronauts each. 

"The proposal considers multiple aspects of the project from delivery and deployment to construction and operations," says Foster. "The habitat will be delivered in two stages prior to the arrival of the astronauts."

Joshua Prince-Ramus Wins $100,000 Marcus Prize

REX founder Joshua Prince-Ramus has won the $100,000 Marcus Prize. Awarded by the Milwaukee-based Marcus Corporation Foundation, the biennial award is dedicated to honoring emerging designers who've had a decade of exceptional leadership in their field. 

"He is headed to the pantheon of greatness...and yet his ideas are still evolving," said Bob Greenstreet, dean of the School of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, which administers the award.

Jean Nouvel Wins Approval for Leaning "Tours Duo" Project in Paris

Jean Nouvel has won approval for "Tours DUO" in Paris. The mixed-use project, planned to rise on a former industrial site on the edge of the Seine in the Paris Rive Gauche district, aims to become a "top business real estate destination" and neighborhood amenity. Its two towers will house an eight-story hotel, office space, retail, a top floor restaurant-bar, gardens and green terraces, as well as a "renewed access" to the Seine. 

Richard Silver's Stunning Vertical Panoramas of New York Churches

Seasoned photographer Richard Silver has captured the beauty of New York's churches unlike any other. By seamlessly stitching together a series of composite images from each location, Silver has created a stunning set of vertical panoramas that reveal the interiors of New York's most impressive religious structures

“Finding the perfect location in the center aisle then shooting vertically from the pew to the back of the church gives the perspective that only architecture of this style can portray,” Silver told Colossal.

Church of St. Francis Xavier. Image © Richard Silver Photo Church of the Village. Image © Richard Silver Photo Our Lady of Guadalupe at St. Bernard's Church. Image © Richard Silver Photo St. Monica's Church. Image © Richard Silver Photo

Gallery: A Sneak Peek at Zaha Hadid's Dominion Tower in Moscow

Photographer Laurian Ghinitoiu has shared with us this sneak peek of Zaha Hadid Architects' latest completed work, the Dominion Tower in Moscow. Led by Project Director Christos Passas, the building's eight rectilinear stories are each staggered and cantilevered over the one below and feature ribbon windows with a trademark Zaha Hadid twist, while the interior features a dramatic top-lit atrium criss-crossed by stairs. Read on to see Ghinitoiu's full photo set.

CEMEX Announces International Finalists for XXIV Building Awards

From the Metro Line 4 in Budapest to the Faculty of Health Sciences in Granada and the Hotel Steingerberger in Berlin, CEMEX has revealed a diverse list of international finalists for the XXIV Building Awards. The awards aim to recognize the best architecture and construction projects internationally, honoring projects completed during 2014 that stand out for their constructive solutions, aesthetics and innovative techniques.

The finalists span five categories: housing, institutional/industrial, infrastructure/urbanism, sustainable building and accessibility congruence. The winners will be announced on November 5. See all of the finalists after the break and check out the winners of last year’s awards here

Grayson Perry, Martha Thorne and Bjarke Ingels Among the RIBA's 2016 Honorary Fellowships

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) have announced fourteen 2016 RIBA Honorary Fellowships (of whom two are in partnership) and eight International Fellowships which will be awarded at an event on the 1st February 2016, alongside the recently announced RIBA Royal Gold Medal. RIBA Honorary Fellowships are awarded annually to people who have made "a particular contribution to architecture in its broadest sense," be it in the fields of architecture, construction, media, education, or the arts.