Barbara Porada

Happy Birthday, Toyo Ito!

© Yoshiaki Tsutsui

Pritzker Laureate Toyo Ito (June 1, 1941) turns 73 today. Renowned for flexible spaces that appeal to the human senses, Ito draws inspiration from the organic forms of nature, prioritizing fluidity between the natural world and the built form in his designs. Ito’s oeuvre defies definition; each of his many works, from the Odate Dome to White U to his masterwork Sendai Mediatheque, is extremely unique. We invite you to explore the The Life and Work of Toyo Ito.

Columbia University School of Nursing / CO|FXFOWLE

© CO|FXFOWLE

FXFOWLE and CO Architects (CO|FXFOWLE) have teamed up to design a seven-story School of Nursing building for the Columbia University Medical Center campus in upper Manhattan. The result of an invited design competition, the design will provide 65% more space than the school’s current location and will be designed to achieve LEED Silver certification.

“Pierrefonds Library” Winning Entry / Chevalier Morales Architectes

Courtesy of

Chevalier Morales Architectes, in collaboration with DMA Architectes, has won the competition for the design of the Pierrefonds Library in Quebec. The project called for a complete renovation of the existing building to achieve LEED Gold certification and a 2,316 square meter extension that would include new document management technologies. The team’s building design was inspired by Pierrefonds’ old master plans as well as the economic pragmatism of shopping malls.

Necklace Residence / REX

Courtesy of Luxigon

REX has just released their winning competition design for a unique residential competition: a private residence for three generations. The estate includes the parents’ home, four children’s homes, event space, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, gym, spa, library, study, home cinema, and performance space.

Ten Firms Shortlisted to Renovate Mies’ MLK Jr. Memorial Library in D.C.

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library / Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Image © Flickr user Elvert Barnes

In August, we reported a Request for Qualifications for the renovation of Mies van der Rohe’s Martin Luther King (MLK) Jr. Memorial Library in Washington D.C. - Mies’ only library and the only building in D.C. A few days ago, the District of Columbia Public Library (DCPL) narrowed down the list of potential firms from 26 to 10 and revealed that it was looking for community input on the library’s future spaces and services.

The ten firms that made the cut are:

Design Miami Pavilion / formlessfinder

© formlessfinder

Each December, Design Miami/ commissions early-career architects to build a designed environment for the fair’s entrance as part of its biannual Design Commissions program. This year’s winning proposal, dubbed “Tent Pile,” was designed by the New York-based architectural practice formlessfinder. Its design harnesses the properties of sand and aluminum to create shade, seating, cool air and a space to play for Miami‘s public.

3C Competition Winners Announced

First Place: Adaptive Urban Habitats / Mixed Paper

Operation Resilient (ORLI) has just announced the winners of its 3C: Comprehensive Coastal Communities ideas competition. Entrants were asked to design solutions that were not just resilient but also contextually sensitive and pragmatic to the devastating aftermath of Super-storm Sandy as well as all future natural disasters. Over 60 submissions were received from 20 different countries and 32 finalists were engaged in a public education strategy through a public voting campaign. A jury panel of eight leading professionals in the fields of architecture, urban planning and disaster mitigation met in mid-September to review the top finalists and selected 3 winners.

The 2013 winners of the 3C Competition are:

Espacio Portalet / Magén Arquitectos

Courtesy of Magén Arquitectos

Magén Arquitectos has recently proposed a new cultural center called “Espacio Portalet” for the mountainous pass on the border between Spain and France. Their design proposal aims to evoke cultural memory and to highlight the impressive landscape context of the Pyrenees.

“Community and Earth” Competition Entry / Lockhart Krause Architect

Courtesy of

Australian practice Lockhart Krause Architect has entered its proposal “Community and Earth” into an international design competition for a contemporary art gallery and museum of historical artifacts in the world heritage city of , Russia. Their scheme aims to “provide a vibrant place for the community” and “explores the idea of earth and history by cutting into the ground.”

McCormick Place Event Center / Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects

Courtesy of Pelli Clarke Pelli

Architecture firm Pelli Clarke Pelli has been selected to design the new $195 million McCormick Place Event Center in Chicago that will double as home for the DePaul Blue Demons basketball program. With 10,000 seats, the building will also house large business and professional meetings as well as concerts and special events.

Winner Chosen to Design Annex to Chile’s National History Museum

Courtesy of

The winner of a competition to design a new extension for Chile‘s National History Museum has been announced. The competition, hosted by The Chilean Architecture Department of the Ministry of Public Works and the Department of Libraries, Archives and Museums, called for an 8,612 square feet annex devoted to exhibition and storage space. From the 54 proposals received, Aguiló + Pedraza Architects’ stood out.

The Architect’s description of the proposal, after the break.

“Austria. Naturally Yours” Competition Entry / penda

Courtesy of

In an effort to “feed the world,” penda, in collaboration with Alex Daxboeck, has won first runner-up in the two-stage competition for the Austrian at the 2015 Milan Expo. Supporting the Expo’s theme, penda’s proposal plans to be designed and harvested by its visitors, who will plant herbs, vegetables and fruits all over it throughout the duration of the seven-month event. By the end of the Expo, the pavilion will be fully taken over by organic food, which will then be prepared by chefs and served back to the visitors in the Pavilion-Restaurant. 

“The Hug” / MenoMenoPiu Architects & Paolo Venturella

Courtesy of MenoMenoPiu Architects &

MenoMenoPiu Architects & Paolo Venturella just released their entry for the Alvar Aalto University Otaniemi Campus Competition in Helsinki. Their proposal focuses on the creation of an energy-efficient learning environment that rethinks the traditional courtyard typology. It uses different levels and heights to create a variety of public and private spaces open to both students and inhabitants of the city, all while framing the main building.

The architects’ description after the break. 

Apple Patents Glass Cylinder Design

Courtesy of

Apple has successfully secured a patent for the cylindrical, glass entrance to its Shanghai store. After trademarking the design and layout of its retail stores last January, this is one more battle Apple has won for copyrighting its signature look.

More on the patented design after the break.

MASS Design Group’s Proposal to Reconstruct Haitian Hospital

© MASS Design Group

In September 2012, the Haitian Ministry of Economy and Finance called for the of the hospital of the State University of Haiti, a medical facility located in the heart of Port-au-Prince that has been operating in ruins since the 2010 earthquake. After the Ministry received large development grants from the US and France, the challenge for designers was to create an earthquake resistant hospital within the $48 million budget, while also phasing the construction to maintain an operational capacity of 500 beds. MASS Design Group was one of the design teams to come up with such a proposal.

For the team’s project description, read on.

Arts Building for University of Iowa / Steven Holl Architects

Courtesy of

More than three years ago we reported that Steven Holl Architects and BNIM Architects won the commission to design a new art studio facility for the University of Iowa (UI) Arts campus. Today the building has officially broken ground and entered the construction phase. The new Visual Arts Building will replace the original arts building from 1936, which was heavily damaged during flooding in 2008. It will be directly adjacent to and northwest of Art Building West, an earlier, award-winning Steven Holl design.

Keep reading for more on the new building’s design.

Incheon International Airport – Terminal 2 / Gensler

Courtesy of

A few days ago, Korea‘s Incheon International Airport broke ground on its latest addition, Terminal 2. Gensler, in collaboration with the HGMY Consortium, designed the $2.5 billion project that will double the size of the country’s busiest airport with its 72 gates and 7.4 million square feet of space. The project includes a second airport control tower, train station, parking facilities and an airside Intra Airport Transit (IAT).

Keep reading for the architects’ description.

AD Classics: Ariston Hotel / Marcel Breuer

Courtesy of Plataforma Arquitectura

Located in the La Serena neighborhood of , Argentina, the well-known yet now abandoned Ariston Hotel was designed and constructed in 1948 by the Hungarian architect Marcel Breuer, a great diffuser of the modern movement in architecture. Originally meant for housing social reunions, dances and cocktail parties, this project is notable for its elevated volume with a curving, clover-inspired form that permits maximum glazing.