Karissa Rosenfield

Mayor Rejects Sou Fujimoto’s Taiwan Tower Over Fears of Soaring Cost

© Architects

Taichung Mayor Lin Chia-lung has temporarily “pulled the plug” on Sou Fujimoto’s ambitious Taiwan Tower, saying he would rather pay a penalty for breaking the contract than spend an estimated NT$15 billion to realize the “problematic” project.

The Banyan tree-inspired tower was hoped to become the “Taiwanese version of the Eiffel Tower,” as well as a model for sustainable architecture by achieving LEED Gold with its energy producing features. Its steel superstructure, which proposed to hoist a triangular section of the Gateway Park’s greenbelt 300-meters into the air, intentionally had “no obvious form” and was to be perceived as a natural phenomenon.

Shelter Global Launches Dencity Competition 2015

© Shelter Global

Shelter is pleased to invite architects, planners, students, engineers, designers, thinkers, NGOs and organizations from all over the world to take part in the first annual Dencity Competition. Rapid world growth and urbanization is not allowing to adapt and provide for their inhabitants. Towns are quickly growing into , and some of the densest places in the world are comprised of makeshift homes, otherwise referred to as slums. Furthermore, already overcrowded have to absorb people leaving their rural hometown in hope of job opportunities. There are currently over 1 billion slum dwellers in the world. This number is expected to reach 2 billion by the year 2030. Now, more than ever, we need to play a central role in the development of substandard neighborhoods. Slums effect much more than just housing; they affect almost all living conditions and communities as a whole.

The intent of this competition is twofold: to foster new ideas on how to better handle the growing density of unplanned cities and to spread awareness of this massive problem. Contestants should consider how design can empower communities and allow for a self-sufficient future.

A First Look at Omniplan’s Proposed Dallas Holocaust Museum

© Holocaust Museum / Omniplan

The Dallas Holocaust Museum and Center for Education and Tolerance has officially gone public with plans to build a new permanent home in the city’s West End, across from the museum’s current location. Preliminary designs, by Texas-based Omniplan Architects, indicate a modest concrete and weathered steel structure with expanded galleries that would be built on parcel bound by Ross Avenue, Houston Street and the Dallas Area Rapid Transit light. 

Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts Reveals Expansion Plans with Buildings by Steven Holl and Lake|Flato

The Fayez S. Sarofim Campus. Image ©

The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston () has released plans for an ambitious $450 million expansion that will transform it into one of the largest art campuses in the US. The 14-acre masterplan will include three new buildings – one by Texas-based Lake|Flato Architects and two others by museum aficionado Steven Holl Architects - connected by a pedestrianized landscape of reflecting pools and gardens.

The first scheduled to break ground (this year) is the Steven Holl-designed, 80,000-square-foot new home for the Glassell School of Art. The L-shaped, pre-cast concrete structure will, as MFAH describes, pride itself as an extension of the campus landscape, featuring a stepped amphitheater that leads up to a walkable, trellised roof garden.

Snøhetta Chosen to Design Le Monde Headquarters in Paris

© Snøhetta

French media company Group has chosen Snøhetta to design their new headquarters in . Clad with a pixelated matrix of glass that offers varying degrees of transparency, the building’s distinct facade will be embedded with clusters of LEDs that project “abstracted levels of data,” symbolically representing the group’s continuous “flow of information.”

“The intention is that the façade gives the building a homogenous character when viewed from distance, but at the same time reveals a greater level of complexity as the view approaches – like headlines and detailed content in a news story,” says Snøhetta. “The façade patterns are intended to represent the building as a complete volume, while the distorted pixel map creates a rich tapestry from inside and out.”

On View in LA: “ZOOM” / Steven Christensen and Mads Christensen

© NO RELATION

Now on view until January 18 at the A+D Architecture and Design Museum in Los AngelesZoom is an installation by the interdisciplinary collaborative NO RELATION, led by architect Steven Christensen and artist Mads Christensen. The project reflects upon the topic of scale, and the exuberant surface qualities one often observes in ordinary objects when magnified. The installation acts as a space multiplier, using form and light to produce an immersive and disorienting spatial experience at a scale seemingly larger than the project’s diminutive footprint.

Vincent Laforet’s Images of New York From Above Will Take Your Breath Away

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Something he has “dreamed of capturing for decades,” Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Vincent Laforet has released a stunning set of images that captures his hometown of New York in a way that has never before been seen. Taken from a nauseating 7500-feet above the city, Laforet’s “Gotham 7.5K” series reveals the unrelenting, pulsating energy that radiates from the Big Apple’s city grid.

All the images and the making-of video, after the break. 

New York’s “City of Dreams” Competition Selects Two Winners

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Two winners have been announced for the fifth annual cycle of ’s “City of Dreams” competition: the “Billion Oyster Pavilion” by locally-based BanG Studio and “Organic Growth” by Izaskun Chinchilla Architects of Madrid and London. Pending approvals and fundraising, both pavilions will be assembled on Governors Island and open to the public for the summer 2015 season. The winning pavilions, after the break.

Video: The Making of RSHP’s Leadenhall Building

In celebration of Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners’ relocation to their newly constructed Leadenhall Building, the -based practiced has released a short film that captures the “making of” the 52-story, 225-meter skyscraper. RSHP, now occupying the building’s 14th floor, is said to be proud to be Leadenhall’s latest tenants: 

“After 30 years at Thames Wharf Studios, it is important for us to be moving into a building that reflects the ethos and evolution of our design practice, clearly stated in its urban relationship with the Lloyd’s building opposite,” says the partners of RSHP. “We will begin this new phase of our history in a building that already feels like home but allows us the advantages of a contemporary, flexible office space in a prime location in the increasingly vibrant and exciting City of London.”

The building, popularly referred to as the “Cheesegrater,” was completed in September of last year. 

64North to Construct “Sparkling” Palo Alto Pedestrian Bridge Over Highway 101

Courtesy of the City of Palo Alto

64 North, HNTB Engineering, Bionic Landscape Architecture and sculptor Ned Kahn have been chosen by the City of Palo Alto to realized a new bicycle and pedestrian bridge over the 14-lane Highway 101 at Adobe Creek. Their winning proposal, “Confluence” will connect residential and commercial areas in south Palo Alto to the Baylands Nature Preserve and the regional Bay Trail network.

Read on for more information and a video about the design. 

Sutherland Hussey Wins Competition to Design Sessay Community Hub

© Sutherland Hussey Architects, courtesy of

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced Sutherland Hussey Architects and Gross Max Landscape Architects as winners of a competition to design a new community hub for Sessay Village in North Yorkshire. The proposal, which jury chair Robin Snell believed to have “best expressed the client vision,” aims to become a well-used public destination that properly serves more than 20 local organizations, including a primary school, cricket club and the First Responders.

The narrow, single-story pavilion will stretch between two circular sports fields, connecting it’s inner halls directly to the outdoors. Continue after the break for more images of the project.

ARCHISHAPE: “Architecture Shapes in Minimalist Clothing”

Courtesy of

Working in reverse, Italian architect Federico Babina’s latest set of deconstructs the stylistic forms of 25 famous architects into a series of abstract compositions that embody the essence of each architect’s style. This “process,” as Babina says, aims to reveal the “ideal connection between architecture itself as a form of representation and the representation used in its design.”

“The architecture is a set of shapes that draw volumes and voids which sequence generates functions and meanings. These illustrations are one of the possible ways to watch, observe and describe architecture… In these pictures you can read architectural references or simply let your mind get lost between the lines and colors for more imaginative interpretations.”

View all 25 illustrations, after the break.

Five Teams Shortlisted to Masterplan UCL’s New Campus in London’s Olympicopolis

’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park featuring, from left to right, Zaha Hadid-_-s Aquatics Centre, the ArcelorMittal Orbit, and the Olympic Stadium by Populous. The Olympicopolis site is on the far left. Image © Flickr CC user Martin Pettitt

Five consortiums have been shortlisted to envision the ’s (UCL) new 125,000-square-meter campus on a key section of London’s Olympicopolis. Planned for the site’s cultural and educational district, nearby the future homes of Victoria & Albert Museum, University of the Arts London and Sadler’s Wells, the campus’ first phase will include the university’s first School of Design, a “Museum of the Future,” and the UCL Center for Experimental Engineering. 

The complete shortlist, including Aecom, Gehl Architects and Stanton Williams, after the break.

Rem Koolhaas and Dasha Zhukova: “Art Partners” Reinventing Moscow’s Garage Museum

February Cover . Image © WSJ. Magazine

Rem Koolhaas and art philanthropist will be gracing the WSJ. Magazine’s February cover as “art partners” embarking on a transformation that will turn a ruined Brezhnev-era Communist landmark – the Vremena Goda in Moscow’s Gorky Park – into the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art’s new home. “The building is basically a found object,” said Koolhaas, regarding his “raw” design and intent to preserve the structure’s decay. “We are embracing it as it is.”

The museum’s new home will “challenge the white-cube tradition of Western museums,” says Zhukova. A double layer of polycarbonate plastic will encase the intact structure so it appears as a translucent box hovering six feet above ground. Commissioned artworks will be presented on a backdrop of “raw brick and broken tiles.” Learn more about the Garage’s design, here, and read the WSJ. Magazine’s full report, here.

Ole Bouman Appointed Director of V&A-Backed Shekou Design Museum

Shekou Design Museum. Image © China Merchants Property Development / Maki and Associates

Ole Bouman, former director of the Netherlands Architecture Institute (NAi), has been appointed director of the new Victoria and Albert Museum-backed Shekou Design Museum in Shenzhen, China. Set to open at the end of 2016 in a Fumihiko Maki-designed building within the Sea World Arts and Culture Center, the new design museum aims to serve as an international platform for Chinese design. 

“We wanted to offer the local residents an internationally important museum that would help promote the development of China’s creative industries and further progress design in China,” stated China Merchants Group (CMG) vice president Sun Chengming. CMG is collaborating with ’s V&A to realize the project. 

More about Bouman’s appointment, after the break.

Win a Postcard Set of Federico Babina’s Archibet, the Illustrated Alphabet of Architects

Archibet / . Image Courtesy of Laurence King

UPDATE: Congratulations to winners Robert, Angelo, Nathaniel, Enasaveva, and Avi! We will be contacting you via email. 

When Italian architect Federico Babina released his Archibet set this past year, it was an instant hit; no surprise, considering Babina’s depict the styles of 26 famous architects, from Alvar Aalto to Zaha Hadid, in a clever way unlike anything else. Now, thanks to Babina and publisher Laurence King, five of our readers can win their very own Archibet set

Official rules: Check out Babina’s complete Archibet set (here) and let us know your favorite “letter” in the comment section below. Five winners will be chosen at random from entries received between Monday, January 12th and Sunday, January 18th 11:59 EST. Anyone in the world is welcome to participate. One entry per person. ArchDaily will enforce verification and remove duplicated ones before choosing the winner.

Bonus: ArchDaily readers can purchase a copy of Archibet by Federico Babina at a discount of 30% when ordering from www.laurenceking.com. Enter the code ARCHIBET30 at the checkout.

Good luck! 

Archiculture Interviews: Mary Woods on “Roarkism” and Market-Driven Nature of US Architecture

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Cornell University professor and historian Mary Woods is one of over 30 influential practitioners that was interviewed during the filming of Arbuckle IndustriesArchiculture documentary. Beyond her explanation of “Roarkism,” a term inspired by Ayn Rand’s protagonist Howard Roark in The Fountainhead that is used to describe the architect as an “uncompromising individualist,” Woods explains the market-driven nature of the profession and how the US government has historically been reluctant to embrace the arts and architecture.

Registration Now Open: AIA Convention 2015

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Registration is now open for AIA Convention 2015, one of the largest and annual gatherings of architects and design professionals in the US. This year’s much-anticipated schedule includes: President Bill Clinton’s day one keynote address, 300+ career-changing workshops, seminars, tours, and led by visionaries, grassroots champions, change agents, and rising stars. A dynamic expo floor turned into a temporary built environment with hundreds of exhibitors, first looks, and surprises. All the details can be found, here. ArchDaily will see you there!