SOMA to Cantilever Luxury Residences Over Protected House in Beirut

© SOMA

New York-based SOMA Architects has announced plans for an 11-story residential development in Beirut. Cantilevering over a protected 1920s house, “BOBO’s” steel exoskeleton and concrete core will support 13 new residences on top ground floor retail in the Lebanese capital’s Mar Mikhael district.

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ARCHIQUOTE: 13 Billboards Advertising Architecture’s Most Influential Concepts

Courtesy of Federico Babina

Federico Babina is at it again, this time creating a series of 13 Las Vegas-inspired billboards that advertise architectural concepts of the profession’s most prolific contributors. The idea behind ARCHIQUOTE, as Babina describes, was to put words into manifest examples of architectural concepts and aesthetics from Mies van der Rohe to Rem Koolhaas.

“The words can be considered as architecture,” says Babina. “Simple concepts with deep meanings and complex thoughts explained with simplicity…Billboards that evoke a Las vegas of architecture where the phrases guide us to understand a little more the idea hidden behind the work done with volumes and space… In these 13 are mixed, intersect and integrate aphorisms and shapes in a communicative game.”

The complete series, after the break.

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ArchDaily Architect’s Holiday Gift Guide 2014

Architect’s Holiday Gift Guide 2014

It’s that time of year again and architects continue to top the list as some of the most difficult individuals to buy for. That classic black tee or new coffee cup just isn’t cutting it anymore, so we’ve decided to help you out by putting together a list of items any architect would love. Take a look at ArchDaily’s top 15 gifts for architects, after the break. 

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CVDB Arquitectos Wins Contest for Student Housing in Lisbon

Courtesy of CVDB Arquitectos

CVDB Arquitectos has won a for a new student accommodation block at Lisbon University’s Pólo da Ajuda campus. The building consists of three interconnected but structurally separate units arranged around a central courtyard, with the internal layout being determined by the modular unit of the individual bedrooms. On the South side of the building, at street level, the building’s communal spaces and vital services provide a sense of transparency in the otherwise opaque building, connecting the central courtyard and the life of the students to the street outside.

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Spotlight: Steven Holl

. Image © Mark Heithoff

As the founder of Steven Holl Architects, Steven Holl is recognized as one of the world’s leading architects, having received prestigious awards for his contributions to design over the course of nearly forty years in practice, including the prestigious Alvar Aalto Medal in 1998, the AIA Gold Medal in in 2012, and the 2014 Praemium Imperiale. In 1991, Time Magazine named Holl America’s Best Architect. He is revered for his ability to harness light to create structures with remarkable sensitivity to their locations, while his written works have been published in many preeminent volumes, sometimes collaborating with world-renowned architectural thinkers such as Juhani Pallasmaa and Alberto Pérez-Gómez.

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RSH+P Breaks Ground on Scottish Whiskey Distillery

Entrance to the distillery. Image Courtesy of Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners has begun construction on a new whiskey distillery and visitor centre in Speyside, Scotland. Designed for The Macallan, a core brand of the major Scottish spirits producer Edrington. The proposed building is buried into the surrounding landscape of The Macallan Estate, revealing itself as a series of grass covered mounds overlooking the river Spey.

Read on after the break for more about the design

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RIBA President Speaks Out Following Institute’s Controversial Diplomatic Efforts

Stephen Hodder. Image © Ed Tyler

Stephen Hodder, the current President of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), has spoken out about a “U-turn” following the proposal of March 19th (passed under past President Angela Brady) condemning the Israeli Association of United Architects (IAUA) for its failure to “resist projects on illegally-occupied land” in the West Bank and Gaza. According to BDOnline, the RIBA has “been forced to abandon its policy [...] after an internal report said it should never have been put to a vote in the first place.”

This highly controversial episode, which has overshadowed Hodder’s presidency, has also garnered criticism both in the UK and as far afield as the USA. Architects such as Richard Meier and Daniel Libeskind have stated that the RIBA’s actions have been “short-sighted and appear to be an attempt to simplify a very complex issue.” In the , Paul Finch writing in the AJ asked whether there would “be a rush to suspend the Russians because of what is happening in Ukraine? Were the Chinese suspended when they were destroying much of their magnificent built heritage, or invading Tibet?” “Certainly not”, he concluded.

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SYAA Designs New Natural Science Museum Complex in Romania

View from Garden. Image Courtesy of SYAA

SYAA has just been named first prize winners for their design of a new Natural Science Museum Complex in , . Proposed at an unprecedented scale for the region, the design seeks to become a significant destination in the Black Sea tourist industry. Incorporating features of an amusement and leisure park into the program of a science museum, SYAA proposes a building equipped to adapt to a diverse variety of public activities and events. Some of the primary functions will include an aquarium, dolphinarium, exotarium and tropical greenhouses, planetarium, and observatory.

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JAHN and ADG Unveil Mexico City’s Newest Baseball Stadium

© and

JAHN and ADG have released designs for Los Diablos Rojos del Mexico’s new home stadium in Mexico City. Scheduled to open in the city’s Magdalena Mixhuca sports complex in 2017, the 13000-seat “Estadio Diablos” will feature a “monumental lightweight” roof structure that resembles Diablos’ trident. 

“Indicative of the sky, the roof design is sharp, translucent, luminous and dynamic,” says JAHN. “Composed of lightweight steel wrapped in PTFE textile material, the roof will become an iconic symbol for the great City of Mexico.”

More on the stadium’s design, after the break. 

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Steven Holl Selected to Design New Wing for Mumbai City Museum

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Steven Holl Architects has been selected to design a new extension to one of ’s oldest museums, the Mumbai City Museum, also known as the Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum. Selected over OMA, Studio Mumbai Architecture, Zaha Hadid and four others, Holl is now the first architect ever to be chosen through an international competition to design a public building in Mumbai.

Continue reading to learn more about Holl’s winning design. 

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London Launches Call for Architects to Design Second Pedestrian Bridge

Nine Elms on the South Bank skyline, looking west. Image © St James’ Group

The London Borough of Wandsworth has launched an international call for architects and engineers interested in envisioning what could be the second pedestrian bridge to rise near the Battersea Power Station development. The two-stage ideas competition, whose announcement comes shortly after the recent approval of Thomas Heatherwick’s Garden Bridge, believes that the bridge could potentially become “one of the most expressive and visible landmarks in London.”

Though the competition cannot guarantee that the winning design will be built, partial funding has already been budgeted for the bridge’s future construction and it is hoped that the winning design can be used to attract further interest and funding. Continue reading to learn more.

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ArchDaily’s 2014 Holiday Card Contest

‘Twas the month of December, when all through the house, not an architect was stirring, not even a (computer) mouse. The drawings were hung in the boardroom with care, in hopes that the client soon would be there. The designers were nestled all snug in their beds, while dreams of unlimited budgets danced in their heads. So instead of preparing for the year’s final meeting, dear readers, please send us a holiday greeting!

The holidays are upon us, and at we’ve decided to put an architectural spin on traditional festive greeting cards. You’re invited to submit your own architectural holiday card to be hung above the (proverbial) mantle with care. You could win a $500 Amazon Gift Card!

Send us your best Corbusier Santa Claus, Rem ‘Jack Frost’ Koolhaas, Graves-inspired Postmodern Menorah, or perhaps the latest holiday wares from Zaha Hadid. We’ll be collecting our favorites and sharing them at the end of December. Get ready to deck halls like Gehry and gather around the hearth with Saarinen – we’ll go easy on building code.

ArchDaily’s 2014 Holiday Card Contest has been generously sponsored by Mosa

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UNESCO Launches Design Competition for Bamiyan Cultural Centre in Afghanistan

As Afghanistan begins its second decade of democratic governance after nearly 30 years of political instability, through the funding from the Republic of Korea, has teamed up with the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture, to build a Cultural Center close to the boundaries of the Bamiyan World Heritage property. With the realisation of the Bamiyan Cultural Centre, Afghans have the opportunity to recapture their heritage, to create a new impact on a historical site and to foster a positive relationship between their struggles and their hopes.

“This new architectural programme can challenge cultural barriers, reaffirm Afghanistan’s remarkable ancient history and enforce culture as a foundational component to Afghan national identity and peace-building,” states UNESCO.

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The Work of SelgasCano, the 2015 Serpentine Pavilion Designers

Office in the Woods. Image © Iwan Baan

The latest designer of the prestigious Serpentine Gallery Pavilion has been named as SelgasCano, the Spanish practice known for their use of the latest synthetic materials and new technology. The Serpentine Pavilion, which has grown to become one of the most visited annual architecture attractions in the world, aims to provide architects who have never built in the UK their first chance to do so. In the past, this has led to pavilions by globally-recognized names such as Frank Gehry, Zaha Hadid, Rem Koolhaas, Oscar Niemeyer, and Peter Zumthor, but in recent years the Serpentine Gallery seems to have changed course a little, instead bringing lesser-known, emergent stars to a much wider audience. This was true of Smiljan Radić and his 2014 pavilion, and will likely prove true for the duo of José Selgas and Lucía Cano.

Although designs for the 2015 pavilion will not be released until February, SelgasCano have promised ”to use only one material… the Transparency,” adding that “the most advanced technologies will be needed to be employed to accomplish that transparency.” This coy description perhaps calls to mind the design of their own office, a partially sunken tube of a building with one side made entirely of curved glass, which won them widespread recognition in 2009.

To give a better idea of the design style that SelgasCano will bring to the 2015 Serpentine Pavilion, we’ve rounded up a number of their major projects for your viewing pleasure, after the break.

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Legal Challenge Dropped After Maggie’s Agrees Changes to Holl’s St Bart’s Design

Courtesy of

A legal challenge against Steven Holl‘s design for the new Maggie’s Centre at St Bart’s Hospital in London has been dropped, after Holl and Maggie’s agreed to change the design. The challenge was brought by the Friends of the Great Hall, a group that has been campaigning against Holl’s design and arguing that it would have a detrimental effect on the adjacent Great Hall designed by James Gibb in the 18th century.

Holl’s design narrowly won planning permission in July, however the Friends of the great hall launched the judicial review a month later as a final attempt to block the scheme.

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Wilkinson Eyre Claim Plagiarism At 2015 Milan Expo Site

It seems as though the complex case of architectural copyright has been a major talking point of 2014. As the year begins to draw to a close, a fresh tension has risen between two European offices. British practice Wilkinson Eyre have claimed that a central structure at the site of the 2015 Milan Expo is direct plagiarism of their Cooled Conservatories at Gardens by the Bay project in Singapore, completed in 2012. According to an article in The Telegraph, the ‘Tree of Life’ will “form the centre-piece of the Italian pavilion” in Milan.

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2015 Wheelwright Prize

Jose Ahedo, Blanca Pyrenees, Education Center (Els Hostalets de Tost, , 2013). Image Courtesy of Wheelwright Prize

The Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) is pleased to announce the third edition of the Wheelwright Prize, an open international competition that awards $100,000 to a talented early-career architect to support travel-based research. The 2015 Wheelwright Prize will begin accepting applications online on January 5; the deadline for submissions is January 30. This annual prize is dedicated to fostering new forms of architectural research informed by cross-cultural engagement.

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ABDM and RAU Win Competition to Design College Campus in Kortrijk

© ABDM and

Belgian architects ABDM and Dutch architects RAU have been selected over eight teams to design the new Howest College Campus in Kortrijk. A collaboration with Delva Landscape Architects, the school will act as the campus’ main building, open to all 24/7.

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