House Cellina von Mannstein / Peter Pichler Architects

Peter Pichler Architects, a young team based in Bolzano, , have worked with well known names such as Zaha Hadid and OMA, and now, their studio’s first building will be realized in a few months. The client, the German photographer Cellina von Mannstein, will now reside in the northern part of Italy, surrounded by the Alps. With the intention to keep the two dominate trees on the site and to capture one of the them within the volume of the building, a “green atrium” was created between the built volumes that cuts the building in two parts.

More images and more about the residence after the break. (more…)

Cannes-Mandelieu Airport / Comte Vollenweider Architects

Comte Vollenweider Architects shared their winning design for the extension of Cannes  with us.  The ’s elegant construction focused on the functional side of improving the services offers concerning business aircraft, for both welcoming the crews and performances concerning plane’s maintenance.  The structure is an open volume, allowing the space to be maximized, which offers complete freedom to the planes and their to maneuver.

More about the project after the break. (more…)

Noodle Shop / ISSHO Architects

Our friends from Abitare shared this cool noodle shop designed by ISSHO Architects with us. Located in central , the ‘soba’ noodle shop has Machiya-style wooden louvers, invoking a traditional Japanese townhouse.  The varying depth of each louver creates a textured sensation across the facade.  Regionally different patterns of light spill through the façade from the interior, allowing a gradual change of character at dawn, especially as viewed from the main street.  The facade aesthetic is modified on the interior’s ceiling as white curved panels contrast the concrete and wood dinning areas to soften the space.  A minimalistic residential apartment for the owner sits above the noodle shop.

More images after the break. (more…)

Capilla para el Tio / Visiondivision

Visiondivision never fails to share interesting projects with us, whether it be their zoo/waterfall or their latest – a chapel for Tio, an evil devil that owns a mountain in . As unusual as it may sound, miners in are faced with awful working conditions inside a mountain, and claim that Tio is responsible for claiming the 8 million lives that have been lost within the mountain.  The project is a shrine to Tio, and will serve as a place the miners can leave gifts for the devil so he does not harm the men working in the mountain.

More about the shrine and more images after the break. (more…)

Shelter for Haiti / Andres Duany

In just a short period of time since the earthquake hit , designers have been proposing possible housing solutions for the country.  We will share a variety of these housing schemes with you throughout the week, with the hope that they will encourage more people to get involved to help not only , but also Chile.   The first proposal is designed by Andres Duany, a Miami architect.  Duany, with the help of sociologists and anthropologists, has designed four different versions of a temporary structure to relieve the urgent need for housing in Haiti.   The differences in the homes respond to the varying ways Haitians live, so that each home is tailored to their specific needs.

More about the houses after the break. (more…)

Architecture for Humanity helping Chile

© REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado

As we reported earlier, an 8.8 earthquake hit last Saturday.

The situation is very bad in the southern parts of the country, specially in coastal towns that were swiped by a tsunami.

Architects immediately started to volunteer, coordinated by the local architect’s institute and the government, with the help of our friends at Plataforma Arquitectura. First actions are to help the community by evaluating damaged buildings, so people can either go back and sleep inside or be relocated, and then proceed to reinforce structures or demolish buildings.

Further actions will include emergency housing, relocation, planning and construction of coastal cities, landmark preservation, and more.

Architecture for Humanity has once again offered their resources to help, as they have done in New Orleans, , and more.

If you want to help just go to this link at Architecture for Humanity to donate and support architects volunteering in Chile.

Tokinokura Lavatories Shimodate / Shuichiro Yoshida Architects

Here’s  a kind of project we don’t frequently see a lot of…a public bathroom facility.   Shuichiro Yoshida, a based architect, designed housed on less than 9m2 of ground space in Chikusei City.   The site is a historic storage building, (one of the few still standing after the WWII), and a volunteer group obtained the ownership of  the building to use as their activity base for “discovering the region-specific historical and cultural heritages.”  Yoshia was asked to add for visitors and staff (as there are none within the building).   Faced with such a small area of land to provide facilities for both men and women, the bathrooms are, in fact, an elegant addition to the main building.  Due to the small footprint, the bathrooms maintain an open feeling because they are open to a high ceiling with exposed timber supports.   The are seen as a way to not only preserve the region-specific landscape but also to create new landscape for the future.   The exterior is clad in elastic plasterer finish while the interior walls are finished in a white material known as “Shikkui” which has humid conditioning and fire prevention.

More images after the break. (more…)

Long Barn Studio / Nicolas Tye Architects

Nicolas Tye Architects‘ newest studio neighbors the practice’s barn-conversion residential project.  For their newest office space, the 2,200 sqf barn has been transformed into an elegant studio that rests comfortably against the rolling hillside of .   Taking a mere 10 months to finish, the studio houses Nicolas Tye’s employees.  Serving as a manifesto of the studio’s beliefs, the building respects its contextual surroundings while demonstrating a contemporary identity.

More about the studio and more images after the break. (more…)

Earthquake in Chile

Collapsed building in Concepcion, Chile © AP

Dear readers,

As you might have seen on the news, an 8.5 earthquake hit on Saturday at 3:30AM.

The country was seriously affected, specially in the southern part. A 15 story tall building (pictured above) fell to one side,highways collapsed,  several old buildings collapsed, and even  new buildings collapsed. It could have been way worse, if compared to (which was 7.something). This was due to the country’s seismic design code, recognized as one of the best in the world. So, the reason behind recent buildings collapsing seems to be bad construction, not design (contractors fault – NOT trying to point fingers, I just want to make clear that the code has been recognized as one of the best).

As I said, the southern part was heavily affected due to the fact that constructions were old, and a lot of them were built with rammed earth in rural towns. Also a tsunami that came a few hours after swiped several costal towns. 706 deaths were informed a few hours ago.

I´m happy to inform that our collaborators from Chile are ok.

Our friends from Plataforma Arquitectura are reporting about earthquake from an architectural point of view in Spanish. They are also reuniting architects, working with the local architecture institute, schools and government to prepare a unified architecture network of relief. Architecture for Humanity will provide technical support (as they are heavily working in Haiti this days).

We are going to keep you informed about this in case they need your help.

Taipei Performing Arts Center / Kokkugia

We have featured several designs for the Performing Arts Center (such as the winning proposal by OMA previously featured on AD), and our latest project is from Kokkugia, a New York and London based architecture firm.  ’s form, which is based on the location’s unique geography, is a compelling composition that attempts to create “a dynamic venue and a public space of spectacle.”   The slight slope of the site in emphasized in the form, as visitors enter from under the building.  The interior aims to create the best possible acoustics.  The roof is a network of semi-autonomous agents that reorganize to adjust so that the roof maintains some of its original geometry and other parts shift freely.

More images after the break. (more…)

Retail Center / Studio Shift

Studio Shift’s newest runs along the riverside in Miyi, and its position allows it to capitalize on the naturally cleansed waters of the South Lake area.  The center creates a significant public space with a direct connection to the water so the complex becomes a destination for relaxation and water-based recreation due to the favorable climate.   Retail is arranged such that equipment for various watercrafts, which can be launched directly from the rental facility, line the channel while restaurants and a cafe sit along the pier. 

 More about the retail center after the break. (more…)

WORKac: 49 Cities, Second Edition

You can now pre-order 49 Cities, by WORKac. For this second edition, the book includes a new interview with Michael Webb (Archigram) and an essay by Sam Jacob (FAT).

You can pre-order from Storefront’s official website.

Athletic Center / Olgga Architects

Olgga Architects‘ Athletic Center in the Basroch neighborhood of Grande Synthe, is currently under construction.  This new recreational infrastructure, which will host rugby, soccer, and cycling and archery clubs, also responds to a strict criteria of sustainability with the inclusion of solar panels for over 40% of hot water heating, 10800sf of photovoltaic membranes on the roof to address peak electricity demands ,a retaining pond and water treatment locale for internal consumption and Utilization of post-consumer and recyclable materials for façades.

More about the Athletic Center after the break. (more…)

Sports Center / Studio Shift

Studio Shift’s 3,000 seat Sports Center in provides a multi-purpose venue to accommodate sporting events such as badminton, table tennis and basketball.  The main center is connected to smaller venues that feature a 200-seat tennis court, a diving/swimming pool, and several badminton and table tennis courts.  To unite the disparate collection of venues, an undulating metal roof encapsulates the program and defines the external boundaries of the building as it wraps down towards the ground plane.

More about the sports center after the break. (more…)

Aquatic Center / Studio Shift

California-based Studio Shift completed their concept phase of a new Aquatic Center in the of China.  Expected to be completed in the spring of 2013, the center will connect adjacent public infrastructures, such as a riverfront promenade, as a circulation system which will become “the connective tissue linking the disparate program elements and site edges, ultimately, delineating the overall programmatic organization of the structure.”

More images and more about the Center after the break. (more…)

Evergreen La Florida / ROW Studio

ROW Studio designed a new luxury apartment complex in a heavily wooded area in southern . The buildings are placed around the existing trees and all facades are covered with plants to conceal the structures.  This strategy gives the interiors “the sensation of living in the treetops”.  Parking and service areas are located below the buildings to maximize the porosity of the soil and to avoid any visual obstruction on the ground level.  There is a visual continuous garden, from the entry of the complex to the back of the site, as greenery flows from the ground level, up the facades of the buildings and into the surroundings.   The ground level apartments are protected with a “land fold” of bushes for privacy which also screen their private patio.     Wooden rooftop decks provide great areas for gatherings, meals, parties or to just simply enjoy garden views.

More images after the break.

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Azahar Group / OAB

Alejo Bague

The Office of Architecture in Barcelona, OAB, just finished the Azahar Group headquarters in the Castellon region of .  Since the Azahar Group is very active with recycling, waste-treatment plants, and the like, the building intends to serve as a manifesto, in a way, to showcase their ideas of the importance of maintaining a relationship with nature.

More about the headquarters and more images after the break. (more…)

City Hall / Frédéric Haesevoets

Frédéric Haesevoets, a Beligan architect, recently won a competition for his design of a new for Herstal.    The international competition asked participants to design a new to accommodate office spaces for central administration, archives and mixed use areas.   The project is divided into two major forms that bookend a public open courtyard.  Connected by a bright red bridge, the two arms house the major program areas and open to a landscaped area for the public to enjoy.   The geometric form offers a break from the surrounding structures, emphasizing the importance of this communal structure.   The faceted facade fuses the natural and the synthetic as sections of greenery are scattered among sections of glass.  Inside, bright warm colors greet workers, a drastic change from the typical office color palette.

More images after the break. (more…)