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109 Architectes Proposes Beirut Museum Design Based on "The Little Prince" Book

08:00 - 20 October, 2016
109 Architectes Proposes Beirut Museum Design Based on "The Little Prince" Book, Courtesy of 109 Architectes
Courtesy of 109 Architectes

109 Architectes has released its proposal for the Beirut Museum of Modern Art (BeMA), for which a competition was recently held. The proposal was shortlisted, but did not ultimately win. In this proposal, BeMA is a box—“a generic form that belongs to everyone”—based on a scene in The Little Prince, where a traveler is asked to draw a sheep. The Prince rejects each sheep drawing until the traveler draws a box, inside of which a sheep is hidden. “The cube is a neutral form in the Little Prince’s search for identity. Within it, he sees what he wants to see.”

Within this generic box, visitors will thus be able to project their views of Beirut—the city’s chaos, diversity, creativity, history, streets, people, and more.

Courtesy of 109 Architectes Courtesy of 109 Architectes Courtesy of 109 Architectes Courtesy of 109 Architectes +6

Spotlight: Sir Christopher Wren

06:00 - 20 October, 2016
Spotlight: Sir Christopher Wren, St. Paul's Cathedral, London. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/locosteve/8287719102'>Flickr user locosteve</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a>
St. Paul's Cathedral, London. Image © Flickr user locosteve licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Sir Christopher Wren (20 October 1632 - 25 February 1723) is one the most significant architects in British history, and was a recognized astronomer, scholar, and physicist-mathematician. Wren was classically trained at University of Oxford in physics and engineering where he developed his interest in architecture. He is perhaps most famous for designing London's iconic St. Paul's Cathedral, however he is credited with the design of dozens of other churches, government buildings, and hospitals in England. Wren was knighted in 1673.

SANAA's Grace Farms Wins the 2014/2015 Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize

23:00 - 19 October, 2016
SANAA's Grace Farms Wins the 2014/2015 Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize, © Dean Kaufman
© Dean Kaufman

SANAA’s Grace Farms has been announced as the winner of the 2014/2015 Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize (MCHAP), recognizing the most distinguished architectural works built on the North and South American continents.

The project was selected from a shortlist of seven finalists, joining Alvaro Siza’s Iberê Camargo Foundation and Herzog & de Meuron’s 1111 Lincoln Road as winners of the highly-regarded prize.

“Among a strong group of projects Grace Farms emerged as a clear winner for the clarity and consistency of its architectural solution,” said Stan Allen, MCHAP Jury President.

“The jury was struck by the radical way in which the line between architecture and landscape is blurred by the ‘River’ building. The firsthand experience of the building reveals a confident realization and the immediacy of its detailing. Finally, the Grace Farms project uniquely demonstrates architecture’s capacity to make a place for an innovative new institution.”

 Learn more about the project after the break.

© Iwan Baan © Iwan Baan © Iwan Baan © Iwan Baan +11

Stanton Williams Unveils New Images of London Royal Opera House Renovation

16:30 - 19 October, 2016
Stanton Williams Unveils New Images of London Royal Opera House Renovation, New Exterior View. Image © Stanton Williams
New Exterior View. Image © Stanton Williams

Stanton Williams has released new and updated visualizations of their design for the renovation of the Royal Opera House in London. The project, titled ‘Open Up,’ aims to transform the public experience of the Royal Opera House at its Covent Garden Home through a series of “legible and flexible” spaces.

New Linbury Entrance View. Image © Stanton Williams New Main Foyer View. Image © Stanton Williams Updated Foyer Transition View. Image © Stanton Williams Updated Main Foyer View. Image © Stanton Williams +14

Mendes da Rocha, FUKSAS & PJAR Architects Design Pre-Fab Homes for Revolution Precrafted

14:30 - 19 October, 2016
Mendes da Rocha, FUKSAS & PJAR Architects Design Pre-Fab Homes for Revolution Precrafted , Courtesy of Revolution Precrafted
Courtesy of Revolution Precrafted

Adding to their collection of pre-fabricated houses by top designers and architects, Robbie Antonio’sRevolution Pre-Crafted” has released 3 new designs by Paulo Mendes Da Rocha + Metro, Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas, and Philip Johnson Alan Ritchie Architects.

The three designs follow Revolution Pre-Crafted’s goal of democratizing the design of pre-fab structures, as they offer a line of products that incorporate the distinct spatial and social brands of master designers. The new houses join options from architects including Zaha Hadid, Sou Fujimoto, Daniel Libeskind and Gluckman Tang.

26 Firms Selected to Design New York City’s Public Buildings

12:00 - 19 October, 2016
26 Firms Selected to Design New York City’s Public Buildings, Courtesy of Snøhetta
Courtesy of Snøhetta

The New York City Department of Design and Construction (DDC) has selected 26 architecture firms to be pre-qualified to design new public projects throughout the city’s five boroughs. In effect until 2019, these firms will be given exclusive access to Request for Proposals (RFPs) for public works projects with an estimated budget of $50 million of less. These projects will include new constructions, additions and renovations of existing public buildings, parks and plazas.

The program, known as the Design and Construction Excellence 2.0 Program, was established in 2005 to increase the efficiency and quality of procuring design services. Recent successes of the program include the Times Square pedestrian plaza by Snohetta, Dattner and WXY’s Spring Street Salt Shed, Studio Gang’s Fire Rescue 2, and BIG’s 40th precinct police station in the Bronx.

America's Oldest Shopping Mall has been Transformed into Micro-Units

08:00 - 19 October, 2016
America's Oldest Shopping Mall has been Transformed into Micro-Units, via Business Insider. Image © Ben Jacobsen/Northeast Collaborative Architects
via Business Insider. Image © Ben Jacobsen/Northeast Collaborative Architects

The Arcade Providence is 188 years old, but it's getting its second wind. 

This classical Greek structure, which also happens to be America's oldest shopping mall, was renovated into 48 micro-apartments and an assortment of businesses. Northeast Collaborative Architects, who led the redesign, converted the top two floors into apartments and bottom floor into commercial space. As single people increasingly contribute to a large percentage of the population, micro-apartments have proliferated as a housing solution.

via Business Insider. Image © Ben Jacobsen/Northeast Collaborative Architects via Business Insider. Image © Ben Jacobsen/Northeast Collaborative Architects via Business Insider. Image © Ben Jacobsen/Northeast Collaborative Architects via Business Insider. Image © Ben Jacobsen/Northeast Collaborative Architects +6

Material Focus: Cerrado House by Vazio S/A

06:00 - 19 October, 2016
Material Focus: Cerrado House by Vazio S/A, © Gabriel Castro
© Gabriel Castro

This article is part of our new "Material Focus" series, which asks architects to elaborate on the thought process behind their material choices and sheds light on the steps required to get a building constructed.

The Casa no Cerrado (Cerrado House) was designed by Vazio S/A office. It was built in Moeda, Minas Gerais and, according to the architects while it seeks to explore the plasticity of basic architectural elements, the project showcases this unappreciated and threatened natural area: the Cerrado. We spoke with architect Carlos M. Teixeira to learn more about his choices of materials and the challenges of the project. 

© Gabriel Castro © Gabriel Castro © Gabriel Castro © Gabriel Castro +17

Office KGDVS Create "Silver Lining" Scenography for Kortrijk's 25th Biennale Interieur

04:00 - 19 October, 2016
Office KGDVS Create "Silver Lining" Scenography for Kortrijk's 25th Biennale Interieur, © Office KGDVS
© Office KGDVS

Located close to the French border, one Belgian city has become a biannual fixture on the calendar for those who work with interior space. Since its foundation in 1968, Kortrijk's (Courtrai in French) Biennale Interieur has been at the beating heart of interior-innovation, curated by leading figures such as Philippe Starck, Gio Ponti, and Verner Panton.

This year, for the Biennale's 25th anniversary, Kersten Geers and David Van Severen (Office KGDVS)—a practice with strong roots in the city itself—have been invited to make their mark on the exhibition's architectural and artistic programme. Their take on the show, entitled Silver Linings, marks a shift from the presentation of objects to the creation of full scale, complete interiors.

© Frederik Vercruysse © Frederik Vercruysse © Frederik Vercruysse © Frederik Vercruysse +22

New York's Future Second Tallest Tower Breaks Ground

14:10 - 18 October, 2016

The Kohn Pedersen Fox-designed One Vanderbilt Avenue broke ground today, beginning construction on what will stand as the second tallest tower in New York City upon completion. Located adjacent to Grand Central Terminal on 42nd Street, the tower will be integrated into the its neighbor through a series of underground connections and $220 million in improvements to Grand Central’s infrastructure.

Courtesy of SL Green Realty Corp Courtesy of SL Green Realty Corp Courtesy of SL Green Realty Corp Courtesy of SL Green Realty Corp +36

Tokyo Pop Lab Competition Winners Announced

06:00 - 18 October, 2016
By Stella Cinzia, Leonardo Ramondetti, Marco Lagamba & Francesco Montesoro. Image Courtesy of Bee Breeders
By Stella Cinzia, Leonardo Ramondetti, Marco Lagamba & Francesco Montesoro. Image Courtesy of Bee Breeders

Detailed descriptions of the winning Bee BreedersTokyo Pop Lab proposals have been released. The competition brief called for a new program for studying and producing pop culture media in Tokyo. Drawing from a wide range of international pop culture history, entrants were encouraged to investigate the migration and evolution of pop culture across the world over time, and examine the relationship of culture and architecture. 

In challenging established typologies of pop culture, proposals exhibited a wide range of ideologies. Successful submissions were chosen for their nuanced depictions of pop culture, clear representation, and coherent agendas for the new laboratory's program.

Take a look at the winners of the Tokyo Pop Lab competition after the break.

By Stella Cinzia, Leonardo Ramondetti, Marco Lagamba & Francesco Montesoro. Image Courtesy of Bee Breeders By Stella Cinzia, Leonardo Ramondetti, Marco Lagamba & Francesco Montesoro. Image Courtesy of Bee Breeders By Alina Kvirkveliya & Sacha Gengler. Image Courtesy of Bee Breeders By Attilio de Palma, Andrea Longo & Enrico Nicli. Image Courtesy of Bee Breeders +38

California College of the Arts Selects 3 Finalists to Design New San Francisco Campus

16:30 - 17 October, 2016
California College of the Arts Selects 3 Finalists to Design New San Francisco Campus, Front of the campus "Skyline". Image © Dave Fenton
Front of the campus "Skyline". Image © Dave Fenton

The California College of the Arts (CCA) has selected 3 top firms as finalists to design “a new, ground-breaking art school that will redefine 21st century arts education.” Chosen from an original pool of 75 architects, the three firms will now interview for the chance to design a new campus that aims to unify the college’s Oakland and San Francisco campuses into one vibrant Bay Area institution.

The chosen firm will work together with the school over the next five years to create a plan that will bring together 2,000 students, 600 faculty members, 250 staff members, and 34 academic programs to a consolidated campus located at the intersection of the city’s innovation corridor, the new DoReMi (Dogpatch, Potrero Hill, Mission) arts district, and Mission Bay. The primary project site will be a 2.4-acre lot that borders the college’s existing San Francisco campus buildings. The campus will house all of CCA’s programs, including art, crafts, design, architecture and writing, fostering interaction between the different disciplines.

OMA, MAD Among 7 Architects Selected in Competition to Redesign Tour Montparnasse

14:00 - 17 October, 2016
OMA, MAD Among 7 Architects Selected in Competition to Redesign Tour Montparnasse, © flickr user xispics. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
© flickr user xispics. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

The Ensemble Immobilier Tour Maine-Montparnasse (EITMM) has selected 7 notable firms to continue to the second round in a competition for the renovation of Tour Montparnasse in the Montparnasse district of Paris, France.

Often cited as one of the architecture world’s most hated buildings, Tour Montparnasse has been criticized for its discordance with the Parisian urban landscape – just two years after its completion, new buildings over seven stories high in the city centre were banned, leaving the tower as an alien presence on the skyline.

With the launching of the competition, the EITMM hopes to transform Tour Montparnasse into a beloved landmark with a complete renovation of the facade, the building entry and all interior spaces. The budget for the project is estimated to reach over 300 million Euro ($330 million USD), and will be funded in entirety by the building owners.

DAM Selects the Top 10 Architectural Books of 2016

12:00 - 17 October, 2016
DAM Selects the Top 10 Architectural Books of 2016, © unsplash user Kazuend. Licensed under CC0
© unsplash user Kazuend. Licensed under CC0

The Frankfurt Book Fair and Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM) have announced the results of the 2016 International DAM Architectural Book Award, their annual list of the ten best architectural books published in the past year.

This year, books were selected from 214 entries and 88 international publishers, based on criteria such as design content, quality of material and finishing, innovation, and topicality. The winning books feature a wide range of topics and graphic styles, and feature projects from all over the world.

Find the top 10 and additional shortlisted books below.

© Uwe Dettmar © Uwe Dettmar © Uwe Dettmar © Uwe Dettmar +21

Spotlight: Alejandro Zaera-Polo

08:00 - 17 October, 2016
Spotlight: Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Yokohama International Passenger Terminal. Image © Satoru Mishima / FOA
Yokohama International Passenger Terminal. Image © Satoru Mishima / FOA

Alejandro Zaera-Polo (born October 17th 1963) is an internationally recognized architect and scholar and founder of LondonZurich and Princeton based firm Alejandro Zaera-Polo & Maider Llaguno Architecture (AZPML). First rising to prominence in the 1980s with his writings for publications such as El Croquis, Zaera-Polo has had a prolific career in both the academic and professional realms of architecture.

Trouble Hits the Final Stages of Gaudí's La Sagrada Familia

06:00 - 17 October, 2016
Trouble Hits the Final Stages of Gaudí's La Sagrada Familia, Sagrada Familia / Antoni Gaudí. Image © Flickr User: haschelsax, bajo CC BY-ND 2.0
Sagrada Familia / Antoni Gaudí. Image © Flickr User: haschelsax, bajo CC BY-ND 2.0

Over the course of 134 years of construction of the Sagrada Familia, the unfinished masterpiece of Antoni Gaudi in Barcelona has experienced three unresolved conflicts. First, there was a lack of a (contemporary) construction permit, the nonpayment of taxes, and finally the uncertainty about whether or not to finally build the large plaza to the southeast that Gaudí imagined with the forced expulsion of up to 3,000 residents and lessees, all living in the area surrounding Sagrada Familia’s Glory Façade.

In recent days, these three issues have come to light almost simultaneously, but let’s discuss them one by one. Bitterly upset by what he describes as "a project without plans in Gaudi's name" Councilman of Barcelona Architecture, Urban Landscape and Heritage Daniel Mòdol called the Sagrada Familia a "giant Easter cake".

His statement, reported by the press two weeks ago, overshadowed the official Municipal proposal made to the temple’s construction monitoring committee "if they plan to modify the planning around the basilica" in a maximum period of six months. This is in reference to the large esplanade designed by Gaudi in his original plan, in front of the Glory Façade (between the streets Mallorca and Arago): a walkway 60 meters wide that would connect the temple with Diagonal Avenue.

Interior of the Sagrada Familia. Image © Flickr User: Kah-Wai Lin, bajo CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 Sagrada Familia / Antoni Gaudí. Image © Flickr User: haschelsax, bajo CC BY-ND 2.0 Sagrada Familia / Antoni Gaudí. Image © Flickr User: Fredrik Rubensson, bajo CC BY-ND 2.0 Sagrada Familia / Antoni Gaudí. Image © Flickr User: H.KoPP, bajo CC BY-ND 2.0 +5

Project Poseidon: Gensler's Radical Proposal for a Temporary (Floating) UK Parliament

04:15 - 17 October, 2016
Project Poseidon: Gensler's Radical Proposal for a Temporary (Floating) UK Parliament, Gensler have proposed a temporary UK Parliament structure. Image © Gensler
Gensler have proposed a temporary UK Parliament structure. Image © Gensler

The British government have come to the realisation that the Palace of Westminster—the iconic UK Houses of Parliament designed by Charles Barry and Augustus Pugin—is in desperate need of full-scale restoration and renovation. The decision to move ahead with the plans will be costly and inconvenient; aside from the need to repair the structure, the UK government is bracing itself for eye-watering "relocation" fees. In response to this, Gensler have proposed a temporary parliament on the banks of the River Thames.

12 Dollhouses That Trace 300 Years of British Domesticity

03:45 - 17 October, 2016
12 Dollhouses That Trace 300 Years of British Domesticity, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London

As part of a new exhibition at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C., twelve dollhouses tracing the history of British domesticity have been lent by London's Victoria & Albert Museum of Childhood. The show—Small Stories: At Home in a Dollhouse—spans 300 years and presents a miniature-sized, up-close-and-personal view of developments in architecture and design – from lavish country mansions, to an urban high-rise.

Whiteladies House (Moray Thomas, England, 1935). Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London Whiteladies House (Moray Thomas, England, 1935). Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London Jennys Home (Tri-ang, Northern Ireland, 1960s). Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London Betty Pinney’s House, set in 1910s (England, 1870). Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London +63

Archimatika Architects Unveils Lively Plans for New Ukrainian Housing Project

14:00 - 16 October, 2016
Archimatika Architects Unveils Lively Plans for New Ukrainian Housing Project, Courtesy of Archimatika Architects
Courtesy of Archimatika Architects

Archimatika Architects has unveiled the plans for “Leopol Town,” a new housing project located on Styiska Street in Lviv, Western Ukraine. Overall, the project will include seven buildings, with 757 flats, shops, cafeterias, restaurants, and public access at the lower levels. 

In an effort to combat the uncomfortable Soviet “sleeping neighborhood” feeling of the city, the project will feature open blocks, parceling, energy efficient systems, and sustainability principles to “invite nature in.”

Courtesy of Archimatika Architects Courtesy of Archimatika Architects Courtesy of Archimatika Architects Courtesy of Archimatika Architects +9

LAVA Unveils Transformation of Energy Storage Center into a City Icon in Germany

12:00 - 16 October, 2016
LAVA Unveils Transformation of Energy Storage Center into a City Icon in Germany, Courtesy of LAVA
Courtesy of LAVA

LAVA (Laboratory for Visionary Architecture) has won the competition to redesign an energy park and energy storage building in Heidelberg, Germany, for the Stadtwerke Heidelberg. Currently a cylindrically shaped storage center, the space will be transformed into a dynamic sculpture, city icon, and knowledge hub for sustainable energy, fully accessible to the public with city views. 

In order to display the concepts of energy transition, decentralization, networking, flexibility and adaptability, the project will feature a multi-layered façade structure inspired by geometries in nature like leaves, spider webs, and reptile skins. “The result is a dynamic, ever-changing surface of light and shadow, animated by wind, turning the building into a beacon of a dynamic new energy regime.”

Courtesy of LAVA Courtesy of LAVA Courtesy of LAVA Courtesy of LAVA +17

Design Week Mexico and Museo Tamayo Launch Museum of Immortality Pavilion

16:00 - 15 October, 2016
Design Week Mexico and Museo Tamayo Launch Museum of Immortality Pavilion, Courtesy of Design Week Mexico
Courtesy of Design Week Mexico

Now in its eighth edition, Design Week Mexico, in collaboration with Museo Tamayo, has unveiled the design for a major public architectural pavilion designed by leading German architects Nikolaus Hirsch and Michel Müller. Until Spring 2017, the installation will be a cultural attraction at Chapultepec Park, Mexico City’s largest public park. 

Courtesy of Design Week Mexico Courtesy of Design Week Mexico Courtesy of Design Week Mexico Courtesy of Design Week Mexico +18

Behnisch Architekten Breaks Ground on Cancer Research Center in Switzerland

14:00 - 15 October, 2016
Behnisch Architekten Breaks Ground on Cancer Research Center in Switzerland, Courtesy of Behnisch Architekten
Courtesy of Behnisch Architekten

Behnisch Architekten has announced the groundbreaking of the AGORA—Cancer Research Center located in Lausanne, Switzerland within sight of Lake Geneva. As the new home of the Swiss Institute for Experimental Cancer Research (ISREC), the Center will bring together 400 researchers, scientists, doctors, and clinicians under the goal of enhanced communication. 

The new AGORA building will connect to an existing building on one side, with minimal disruptions to existing programming. “Visual relationships both on the site and to the landscape beyond require a carefully defined building mass and the new building responds sensitively to these site conditions while sculpturally standing out from its heterogeneous surroundings.”

Courtesy of Behnisch Architekten Courtesy of Behnisch Architekten Courtesy of Behnisch Architekten Courtesy of Behnisch Architekten +9

These Videos Will Help You Pass Your ARE Structural Exam

12:00 - 15 October, 2016
These Videos Will Help You Pass Your ARE Structural Exam, via Dilip Khatri
via Dilip Khatri

For architects seeking NCARB licensure, few things are more daunting than the dreaded structural exam. But now, thanks to a series of videos from structural engineer Dilip Khatri, even those of us who spent more time doodling than paying attention in college engineering classes can acquire the skills needed to pass the structural section of the ARE.

Khatri, principal of Khatri International Structural and Civil Engineers, has a PHD in Structural Engineering from the University of Southern California and over 30 years experience in the profession, including over 20 years of teaching structural engineering. In the videos, he covers everything you’ll need to know for the exam, from test-taking strategy to shear and moment diagramming to complex problem solving, illustrating with the help of a sharpie pen.

The Names and Numbers Behind the World’s 100 Tallest Buildings

16:10 - 14 October, 2016
The Names and Numbers Behind the World’s 100 Tallest Buildings, via CTBUH
via CTBUH

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) has released some of the facts and figures behind the projects appearing in their recent book, 100 of the World’s Tallest Buildings. The construction of tall buildings requires collaboration between many different companies and firms and the efforts of hundreds of people, but a few select firms have been responsible for more of the design and engineering achievements than any other.

Continue reading to see the 18 design architects that have contributed multiple buildings to the top 100 list.