Milan Expo 2015: Eight Teams Shortlisted to Design UK Pavilion

Site, prior to construction

Eight multidisciplinary teams have been selected to move forward in the second stage of competition to design the Pavilion for the 2015 Milan Expo. Drawing inspiration from the theme “Grown in Britain: Shared Globally,” the teams will now envision proposals that showcase Britain’s contribution in research, innovation and entrepreneurship to the global challenges addressed by the overarching exposition theme, “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life.” Presentations will commence mid-April and a winner will be announced in May. View the selected teams, after the break.

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TIME Debuts Powerful, Multimedia Story on One World Trade

© Jonathan Woods, TIME

Today, TIME unveiled “Top of America,” a multimedia site relaying the gripping story of One World Trade, the David Childs-designed skyscraper that stands 1,776-feet tall within Daniel Libeskind‘s masterplan. Beyond providing interesting tidbits of information (did you know that both an 18th century boat and an ice-age formation were found while digging out the building’s foundations?), the article, written by Josh Sanburn, is a fascinating and often deeply moving account — one that gets across the sheer force of will and the extraordinary amount of collaboration it took to raise this building into the atmosphere:

“Nine governors, two mayors, multiple architects, a headstrong developer, thousands of victims’ families and tens of thousands of neighborhood residents fought over this tiny patch of real estate…. Almost 13 years later…. America’s brawny, soaring ­ambition—the drive that sent pioneers west, launched rockets to the moon and led us to build steel-and-glass towers that pierced the clouds—is intact. Reaching 1,776 ft. has ensured it.”

TIME’s investment into the story was considerable (and, one can speculate, motivated by a desire to rival the fantastic multimedia features of The Times). The site is accompanied by a special issue of TIME, a documentary film, an unprecedented 360-degree interactive photograph, and – come April – even a book. Sanburn was not only granted exclusive access to the project for about a year, but photographer Jonathan Woods is the only journalist to have ascended to the skyscraper’s top. Woods, start-up Gigapan, and mechanical engineers worked over eight months to design (on AutoCAD no less) a 13-foot long, rotating jib that could sustain a camera in the harsh conditions at the top of the tower’s 408-ft. spire; over 600 images were then digitally stitched together to create the 360-degree interactive photograph (which you can purchase here. A portion of the proceeds go to the National September 11 Memorial & Museum).

You can explore TIME’s interactive at TIME.com/wtc . Click after the break to watch some incredible videos from the project & read some particularly moving quotes from Sanburn’s article.

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Architects to Relocate Entire City Two Miles Over

‘Kiruna 4-Ever’ plan. Image Courtesy of White

UPDATE: The BBC reports that construction on the Kiruna re-location is scheduled to begin next month. For more on this extraordinary project, read the article below. 

Everyone is familiar with the stresses of moving to a new house, but the residents of Kiruna, a small town of 18,000 in Sweden, face a more daunting task: moving their entire .

For more than 100 years, residents of Kiruna have developed their city center around the world’s largest iron mine, operated by the state-controlled company, Luossavaara-Kiirunavaara AB (LKAB). In 2004, LKAB determined that to continue extracting iron would mean digging deeper, unsettling the ground beneath 3,000 homes as well as the city hall, train station, and century-old church.

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Norman Foster’s Ultra-Thin Condominum Tower to Rise Above Seagram Building

610 Lexington Avenue. Image ©

Construction is officially underway on 610 Lexington Avenue, a 700-foot ultra-thin condominium tower designed by Foster + Partners in City. Designed as a contrast to its neighboring landmark, Mies van der Rohe’s midcentury Seagram Building, the slim 61-story tower will feature 91 luxury units encased within a pure white glass facade.

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Autodesk Launches Foundation Aimed to Solve “Epic Design Challenges”

Butaro Doctors’ Housing / MASS Design Group. Image © Iwan Baan

Autodesk has launched the Autodesk Foundation, an organization which will “invest in and support the most impactful nonprofit organizations using the power of design to help solve epic challenges.” In an effort to aid those tackling global issues such as “climate change, access to water, and healthcare,” the foundation will provide select design-oriented grantees with software, training and financial support.

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VIDEO: The Floating Metropolis That Could Support Brazil’s Offshore Oil Rigs

In Brazil, the offshore oil mining industry is expanding. Unfortunately for oil companies though, it’s expanding away from the coast, as new oil deposits are found further and further from land – so far, in fact, that they’re outside the range of the helicopters that usually transport workers to and from the rigs. That’s why Rice University students took on the challenge of designing “Drift & Drive,” a floating community where workers and their families could stay for extended periods of time, eliminating the inconvenience of the usual “two weeks on, two weeks off” cycle.

The project won the Odebrecht Award last year, and now one of the largest petrochemical companies in , Petrobras, is working on a plan to implement elements of the design.

Read on after the break for more about how the project functions

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User-Generated Kyiv Ideas Competition

The recently announced ‘User-Generated Kyiv Ideas Competition‘ is searching for creative ideas and architectural solutions on building a better . In nowadays circumstances, where citizens arise and understand that a should be built by its citizens, the competition aims to convert the maximum energy generated by the revolutionary wave into urban ideas and new functions of public space.

The jury includes Ai Weiwei, Haris Piplas, Heribert Wolfmayer, Stefano Regazzo and Marc Jay

UPDATE: The registration is open until March 17 has been extended to April 25th (18:00 Kiev time) and projects must be submitted by April 17 April 27th (18:00 Kiev time). For more information, please click here.

Adjaye and Libeskind Among 6 Proposals Unveiled for Canadian Holocaust Monument

Team Lord. Image Courtesy of Government of

David Adjaye and Daniel Libeskind are among six interdisciplinary teams competing to design Canada’s National Holocaust Monument. Planned for an empty, triangular site adjacent to ’s Canadian War Museum, the monument designs are currently undergoing public review before a final decision that will be made by an international jury of design and art professionals this spring. Construction is expected to begin in 2015.

Review the proposals, after the break…

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The Pros & Cons of Living With Google

Google’s New Campus / NBBJ. Image Courtesy of NBBJ

“Some days it feels like Google is taking over the world.” In an article for The Verge Sean Hollister investigates how Google now represents one tenth of Mountain View, the city which hosts the company’s Californian headquarters. Having one of the world’s largest tech companies on their doorstep is a cause of concern for residents, some of whom are now referring to their home as Googleville. Having just bought the lease for a former military airport some city council members are seeing the expansionist move as a step too far – read the article in full here.

Richard Meier Designs Two-Tower Residential Development for Bogota

North View. Image ©

Richard Meier & Partners has unveiled designs for their first project in Bogota: Vitrvm. Conceptualized as two towers united at the base, the new 13-story residential development will provide 36 apartments along Septima Avenue in the north section of the .

“The project is contextually inspired by the beauty of its immediate surroundings,” described the architects. “It aims to reflect and to engage the beautiful gardens and large trees at the Chico Park and the Seminario Mayor,” one of the largest and most important seminaries in Colombia.

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GRAFT Wins Competition to Restore and Extend Youth Hostel in Munich

Room. Image Courtesy of GRAFT Architects

GRAFT Architects have won an invited competition to restore and extend one of Germany’s oldest youth hostels in central Munich, Germany. Their proposal, which was judged alongside designs by haascookzemmrich (Stuttgart), Snøhetta (Oslo), and YES Architecture (Munich), centers around the idea of “experiencing community.” Their proposal enables exchange and communication whilst also alluding to the “established traditions of simple traveling, youthful curiosity and the thirst for encounter.” Connecting the historic quality of the building with the challenges of modern habits and traveling practices, their design “builds a bridge between origins and departure.”

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J. Mayer H. Chosen to Design Karlsruhe’s Anniversary Pavilion

Courtesy of J. Mayer H.

In a design competition hosted by the German of Jubilee, J. Mayer H. Architects and Rubner Holzbau have won the commission for a temporary event pavilion which will be erected in Castle Park in March of 2015 to celebrate the 300th Anniversary of the founding of the city of Karlsruhe.

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LAN Chosen to Revamp Paris’ Grand Palais

© LAN

After a nine-month long competition, LAN Architecture has been commissioned to restructure and extend the historic Grand Palais in . With the intent to “restore the building’s original coherence and sense of transparency,” LAN plans to revamp the 1900 World’s Fair building by resorting its unity and circulation, as well as the volume of its galleries around the Grand Nave and the addition of a new entrance court.

Review the plan in more detail, after the break…

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Three Finalists Announced for Moscow’s Ukraina Hotel Entryway Competition

ABD Architects. Image Courtesy of Entryway > Hotel Competition

The Ukraina Hotel, with the support of the non-state educational institution Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design, have announced the finalists for the Entryway competition. Designs from ABD Architects (Russia) in cooperation with Werner Sobek Moskwa (Russia), TPO Lesosplav (Russia) in cooperation with Malishev Wilson Engineers (UK), and Studio 44 (Russia) have been chosen from a total of ten competing proposals, one of which will now be implemented by the client. Offering the chance to design a new entrance to one of Moscow’s foremost landmarks, the winning scheme will provide a rare opportunity to work with an unique example of Stalinist architectural heritage.

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In OMA’s De Rotterdam, Furniture Transforms 60-meters into Multi-Functional, Versatile Space

OMA’s De Rotterdam, a project 15 years in the making, is designed to maximize the number of functions possible in 44 floors. In addition to shops, hotels and office space, this “vertical ” also contains apartments that use transformable furniture to pack a variety of uses into small spaces. Chairs double as wall art and sofas flip into beds, showing that a 60 square meter apartment is more versatile than we think. 

Developer Wim De Lathauwer explains, ”Why would we only think in quantity of bedrooms and square meters, while many of these spaces are used only sporadically?…In we are simply not used to this way of thinking. De Rotterdam is the ideal project when it comes to maximizing the joy of every square meter. We deal with an audience who understands this and yearns for this extra quality. Even in the large apartments the office, wardrobe- and guest room are combined in one space. Actually, it is very logical.” You can see the dynamic furniture, designed by Clei Italia, in the video below. 

Read more about The Netherlands’ largest building here

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Proposals for Statoil’s Norway HQ from OMA, Foster + Partners, Snøhetta and More

© Harald Pettersen / Statoil

Norwegian energy corporation Statoil has revealed proposals for a new corporate headquarters from the five architecture firms that were shortlisted last October: OMA, Foster + Partners with Space Group, Snøhetta, Wingårdhs, and Helen & Hard with SAAHA. The competition–announced in September of 2013–called for a project that would ”take into consideration a number of new measures in the region regarding public transport, parking, roads and other types of infrastructure.” The winner will be announced in April/May. 

Statoil hasn’t disclosed which project belongs to which firm, but the ArchDaily editors have had some fun trying to put a name to each model. What do you think? Let us know your guesses in the comments!

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Why Do Architects Keep Struggling to Get By?

Courtesy of Jim Bryant/Seattle Post-Intelligencer

In this Financial Times article, Will Hunter reacts to another FT article which brands architects as “cling-ons”: “middle class but only by the skin of our teeth”. Hunter’s article looks at the reasons why our profession has suffered so badly, as doctors’ and bankers’ fortunes have improved dramatically. You can read the full article here.

A Place to Chill: Sweden’s Ice Hotel

Before the Big Bang Suite by artists Rob Harding & Timsam Harding. Image © Christopher Hauser

The IceHotel, a hotel in Jukkasjärvi in Northern Sweden that melts back into the Torne River and is rebuilt each year, is currently in the design phase for next winter. But there’s a new twist: next year guests are able to collaborate with artists to design a suite that is bespoke to their individual tastes. The price tag is admittedly rather steep, and those going for this option can expect “one of the most expensive hotel rooms in the world”, according to the press release.

Is it worth it? Why don’t you decide for yourself – images from this winter’s hotel are after the break!

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