Copenhagen Hospital Draws Competition Entries from Snøhetta, Mecanoo, & More

Bispebjerg Hospital . Image Courtesy of http://www.bispebjerghospital.dk

After choosing British firm BDP to design its masterplan (over proposals from Mecanoo and seven others), ’s Bispebjerg hospital has now announced the all-star shortlists of firms who will compete to design two of the hospital’s new buildings.

The “New Hospital and Mental Health Bispebjerg” is a complex 10-12 year project involving the construction of new buildings, the preservation/renovation of listed buildings, and the mergers of the current Frederiksberg and Bispebjerg Hospitals and the Mental Health Centre Copenhagen with the Children’s Mental Health Centre Bispebjerg. All construction will occur while the hospitals remain in operation and at full capacity.

Learn more about the project – including the architects vying to design its new buildings – after the break.

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SALES ODDITY by Andrés Jaque, Silver Lion for Research at the Venice Biennale

By the late 1960s, two dynamics were shaping a new urban reality in Italy: on the one hand, TV was heavily influencing Italian society, becoming an intrinsic part of daily life; on the other, the social tension resulting from student protests and accelerated immigration had begun to impact cities in a chaotic way. These dynamics paved the way for Milano Due, a new town on the outskirts of , which promised a new, idyllic type of urbanism.

The complex, although traditional in appearance with its red pitched roofs, put into practice modern concepts: its 2,600 apartments, which had access to amenities for  and entertainment, were arranged around a giant artificial garden/lake and were connected via an elevated circulation system. Below ground, the complex housed the studios of the first private TV channel in Italy, a fact that would shape the lives of the inhabitants of Milano Due and eventually all of Italian society.

This interesting urban phenomena is analyzed by Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation in “SALES ODDITY: Milano 2 and the Politics of Direct-to-Home TV Urbanism,” a project that was part of the Monditalia section at the Venice Biennale and was awarded the Silver Lion for the Best Research Project. According to the jury “The project presents critically a fundamental aspect of modern societies: how the power of media occupies other social spaces, both physically and politically. It is based on innovative research combining surveys and interviews with planners and residents and re-appropriation of the mass media language. While based on an Italian case, this issue is present in many international contexts dominated by contemporary technological and neo-liberal cultures.”

Dossier, trailer, and more photos of the project by Miguel de Guzmán, after the break:

SALES ODDITY. Milano 2 and the Politics of Direct-to-Home TV Urbanism
by Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation

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London Design Museum’s Design of the Year: Heydar Aliyev Center / Zaha Hadid Architects

© Hufton + Crow

Zaha Hadid’s Heydar Aliyev Center has beaten out seven shortlisted designs to win  Design Museum’s Designs of the Year Awards. The shortlisted proposals - from a portable eye examination kit to Volkswagen’s XL1 CAR – will remain on view at the museum through August 25.

Not only is Ms. Hadid the first woman recipient in the ’ seven year history, but the center is the first architecture project to be lauded: ”It’s beautiful, it’s inspiring, it’s the clear vision of a singular genius and we thought it was a remarkable piece of work,” jury member Ekow Eshun noted.

Other nominated architecture projects included: NLE Architects’ Makoko Floating SchoolThe Turbulences FRAC Centre by Jakob + Macfarlane Architects, and the interior remodeling of the St. Moritz Church by John Pawson. See more stunning images of the Heydar Aliyev Center here.

Smiljan Radic’s Serpentine Pavilion / Images by Danica O. Kus

© Danica O. Kus

Architecture photographer Danica O. Kus has shared with us images of the 2014 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion, designed by Chilean architect Smiljan Radić. For a closer look at this unusual pavilion, inspired by Oscar Wilde’s short story The Selfish Giant, check out all of Ms. Kus’ images after the break.

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Moscow Launches Competition to Design 2 New Metro Stations

Slavyanskij Bulvar Metro Station. Image © Flickr CC User Sergey Yeliseev

The Moscow Metropolitan is the second busiest metro line in the world, transporting 2.4 billion passengers a year. However despite this, it is a long way short of being the most extensive, with Beijing, Shanghai, London, New York, Tokyo, and Madrid all surpassing it in terms of total track length.

In order to rectify this, in 2012 launched an ambitious expansion plan, aiming to add over 150km of tracks and 70 new stations by 2020. For the first time, they have launched a competition to two of these new stations in the South-West of the city, in the Solntsevo and Novo-Peredelkino Districts.

Read on for more about the Moscow Metro and the competition

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Boris Johnson Speech Reignites Row Over Mount Pleasant Development

Courtesy of Cityscape

The controversial Mount Pleasant development in London has sparked another row this week, as campaigners accused Mayor Boris Johnson of “compromising his neutrality” over the 681-home scheme which he has called in to review personally. Though he is supposed to remain neutral until the hearing, last week Johnson remarked in a speech that the development “will be a wonderful place to live.” However many have expressed concern over the , including Thomas Heatherwick, who lives locally and called the scheme “empty, cynical and vacuous.” Read all the details at BD Online.

Russell A Davidson Elected as 2016 AIA President

Russell A Davidson. Image Courtesy of

This weekend, at the AIA‘s national conference in Chicago, Russell A Davidson was elected the AIA’s 2016 president. Davidson, who served as the AIA’s Vice President in 2012-13 and president of AIA’s New York State chapter in 2007, will be joined by William J Bates and Francis M Pitts as Vice presidents, and John A Padilla as AIA Secretary.

In addition to electing its next leaders, the AIA also adopted a new board structure, which will see it add a new body, the ‘Strategic Council’, which will inform the Board and other Institute bodies of important professional issues.

More on these developments from the AIA National Conference after the break

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Washington D.C. – The Most Walkable City in the US?

Chicago is the fifth most walkable city. Image © Vincent Desjardins via Flickr

new report from Christopher Leinberger and Patrick Lynch at The George Washington University School of Business has unexpectedly named Washington D.C. the most walkable city in the U.S., trumping expected favorites like New York, which ranked second.

Respectively rounding out the top five were Boston, San Francisco, and Chicago. Although a mere 2.8 percent of the population is estimated to walk to work, the report’s authors believe the results are indicative of moving away from automobile dependency and sprawl - an event they consider as significant as Frederick Jackson Turner declaring the “closing of the frontier” in 1893.

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Vo Trong Nghia Wins ARCASIA Building of the Year

Bamboo Wing / . Image © Hiroyuki Oki

Vietnamese Practice Vo Trong Nghia Architects has taken home the top honor at the Architects Regional Council Asia (ARCASIA) 2014 . The Dailai Bamboo Complex, consisting of the 2009 Bamboo Wing and the 2012 Dailai Conference Hall, was selected out of 276 entries to win Building of the Year Award, one of the most prestigious prizes in Asian architecture.

The award adds to the recent success for Vo Trong Nghia, who recently won the top prize in the AR House Awards for their House for Trees.

More on the Dailai Bamboo Complex after the break

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Barcelona Commemorates 300 Years of Catalan Spirit With 7 Public Installations

Identity / . Image © Marcela Grassi

Every year, citizens of Catalonia commemorate the events of September 11th 1714, a key date in the War of the Spanish Succession that has come to symbolize what Voltaire called “the Barcelonans’ extreme love of freedom.” With this year marking the 300th anniversary of these events, Barcelona Cultura enlisted the Fundació Enric Miralles to curate 7 public installations around the city as part of its Tricentenari BCN program.

The result is BCN RE.SET, organized by Benedetta Tagliabue of the Fundació Enric Miralles and stage director Àlex Ollé, which invited guest architects from countries all over the world to colloborate with local universities and create installations symbolizing 6 political and ideological concepts: identity, freedom, Europe, diversity, democracy and memory. These installations will be in place until September 11th. Read on after the break for descriptions of all 6 installations.

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David Rockwell’s Luxurious Pre-Fab Homes

Courtesy of Rockwell Group

Two weeks ago, David Rockwell took a step away from his usual work of interior and set to present his foray into the prefab game – an adaptable 2,400 square-foot house called “Pinwheel.” His aims to challenge two assumptions about prefabrication: one, affordability and luxury are mutually exclusive and two, pre-fab’s limited flexibility makes a cookie-cutter result inevitable. Rockwell says the project, a collaboration between himself and Fred Carl, founder of modular housing venture C3 Design, was inspired by his childhood in Mexico, where “outdoor space was part of the lifestyle.” Check out the plan and more designs after the break.

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Students and Community Members Come Together to Construct Theater in Cape Town Township

Courtesy of Future

The Guga S’Thebe Arts and Cultural Centre in Langa, Cape Town’s oldest township, is expanding to include a theatre exclusively for children and adolescents. The main component of the theatre, set for completion this fall, will be a large, multi-functional space for hosting performances. The project, a collaborative effort between future users and international architecture students, is aimed at stimulating sustainable development while widening the possibilities for the target demographic. To check out more project images, continue after the break.

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Australian Institute of Architects 2014 Northern Territory Awards Winners Announced

Strohmayr House / Troppo Architects. Image © Fiona Morrison

The winners of the Australian Institute of Architects‘ 2014 Northern Territory Awards were announced last night – continuing a strong year for Troppo Architects, who won four awards to add to their Gold Medal, which they received in March. Troppo took home the Territory’s top award, the Tracy Memorial Award, in addition to the COLORBOND® Award for Steel Architecture, the Enduring Architecture Award, and the award for Residential Alterations & Additions.

Other winners on the night included Mode Design and Dunn & Hillam Architects, who each took home one award and one commendation. Neeson Murcutt Architects also bagged a Small Projects Award just a day after a very successful outing in the New South Wales Awards.

Read on after the break for all the winners

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The Projects of OfficeUS: A Round Up of 15 Architecture Classics

© Nico Saieh

Responding to Rem Koolhas’s theme of “Absorbing Modernity,” OfficeUS, the US’s National Pavilion at this year’s Venice Biennale, launched as an experimental architecture firm with a mission to revisit, rethink and re-evaluate one thousand American architectural projects from the last century. The Giardini Pavilion was transformed by New-York based firm Leong Leong into a multi-functioning and interdisciplinary office, run by the six “partners” who were hand-picked for the job. Assigned with the ongoing task of producing models, drawings, and engaging in workshops and lectures throughout the duration of the Biennale, the partners and their collaborators in Venice and around the world attempt “to construct an agenda for the future production of architecture.”

Focused mainly on exported architecture, the projects vary from nuclear plants to US embassies, residential typologies and museums and are lined on the pavilion’s walls within research booklets, available for the use of the partners and the public.

Care to join in? Check out 15 of the projects investigated by OfficeUS, after the break…

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Hy-Fi, The Organic Mushroom-Brick Tower Opens At MoMA’s PS1 Courtyard

Last night, the organic brick structure known as ‘Hy-Fi‘ opened in the courtyard of MoMA’s PS1 space in New York. Designed by David Benjamin of New York architects The Living, the tower was designed as part of MoMA’s Young Architects Program, and its centers around the use of an innovative building material: organic, biodegradable bricks consisting of no more than farm waste and a culture of fungus that is grown to fit a brick-shaped mold.

Acting as the centerpiece for MoMA‘s Warm Up music festival on Saturdays throughout the Summer, the temporary structure will provide shade, seating and water until September 7th. Read on after the break for more on the design.

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London Science Museum Announces Shortlist for New Galleries

© Flickr CC User Science Museum

The Science Museum in London has announced two shortlists of high-profile architects in its competitions to design new Mathematics and Medicine galleries. Due to open by 2018, the new galleries will double the space inside the museum. Among the shortlisted practices are Zaha Hadid Architects, Amanda Levete Architects, Wilkinson Eyre and Caruso St John. Winners for both galleries are expected to be announced in early August.

Read on after the break for the full shortlists

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PlanGrid Launches Educational Offering

Courtesy of

PlanGrid, touted as “the fastest blueprint viewer” available, is one of the most mature apps for viewing, amending and discussing construction drawings on a collaborative cloud-based platform. This week they launched PlanGrid for Education, allowing students full and uninhibited access to every feature of the app free of charge. According to the company, they currently have “40,000 blueprints being uploaded to PlanGrid daily and over 9 million blueprints stored digitally”, making the platform one of the fastest growing in its market.

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What Moscow Can Learn from Barcelona, Berlin, Amsterdam, & London: A New Series from the Strelka Institute & Fundació Mies van der Rohe

Clockwise: Barcelona (© Marcella/Flickr.com), (© mariusz kluzniak/ Flickr.com), Amsterdam (@dbasulto / Instagram), Berlin (via strelka.com).

The Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design in partnership with the Fundació Mies van der Rohe have launched an exciting program of discussions and workshops titled: «Rethinking Europe – European experience in the city development»

The series, which, as part of the Strelka Institute’s summer program, will run from the June 30 to July 29, invites representatives from the architectural and urban planning communities of Europe’s four largest cities – Amsterdam, Berlin, Barcelona, and London – to discuss how their city’s approaches to urban development could be applied to urban territories in . Learn more about this fantastic series, after the break.

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