Young Architects in Africa Announced

Seed, blueprint for libraries in South African Schools (Johannesburg) / Architects of Justice (Kuba GRANICKI, Mike RASSMANN, Alessio LACOVIG)

AS.Architecture-Studio has announced the 2014 . The award aims to highlight creative African projects and help a rising generation of young architects achieve worldwide recognition. Selected from nearly 200 projects, these three practices have been named as finalists: Architects of Justice (South Africa), (Kenya), and Andre CHRISTENSEN & Mieke DROOMER (South Africa).

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Rafael de La-Hoz Unveils TEDA Monument in Tianjin

Day 1. Image Courtesy of

Spanish architect Rafael de La-Hoz has designed a mirrored, 60-meter monument to commemorate the 30 anniversary of the Economic-Technological Development Area (TEDA). The design, titled “A Cut between heaven and earth”, was “driven by an effort to analyze the process of abstraction and reinterpretation of the site.”

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Tetra Shed: A Multi-Functional, Modular Building System Now Available

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Remember Innovation Imperative‘s modular alternative to the “cuboid office?” Shortly after featuring it on ArchDaily interest for the innovative building system grew exponentially; you can now purchase your very own tetra shed® for $25,000 (price subject to decrease, contingent on demand). Each unit is customizable, expandable, fully insulated, and easily tailored to suit your climatic needs. Measuring at about 10 square meters, the units can be transformed into a garden office, spare bedroom, or even combined and stacked to create studio homes and boutique hotels. Continue after the break to learn more about the capabilities of the tetra shed®.

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Lecture: ‘What Mammals Want’, by Jeanne Gang

© Sally Ryan Photography

Jeanne Gang, founder of Studio Gang, will be hosting a public lecture at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts on Monday, April 28, 2014. The lecture, named ‘What Mammals Want’, will start at 5:15pm and seating is first-come, first-served.

Title: Lecture: ‘What Mammals Want’, by Jeanne Gang
From: Mon, 28 Apr 2014 17:15
Until: Mon, 28 Apr 2014 18:30
Venue: Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts
Address: 915 East 60th Street, The University of , , IL 60637,

Robert Hull, Co-Founder of the Miller Hull Partnership, Dies at 68

The Bullitt Center, the World’s Greenest Commercial Building. Image Courtesy of The Miller Hull Partnership

U.S. architect Robert Hull, FAIA, has passed away at 68 due to a stroke. Always to remembered by his peers as a “beloved colleague,” the Seattle-based practitioner, together with his business partner David Miller, was a national leader of sustainable design and architecture in the Pacific Northwest. You can review some of Hull’s work here and read The Miller Hull Partnership’s official , after the break.

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Mexico City Shortlists Seven Architects for Major Airport Expansion

Zagreb Competition Proposal / ZHA © Zaha Hadid Architects

Zaha Hadid, Norman Foster and Richard Rogers are among seven international practices listed to compete for a 5,000 hectare expansion that hopes to “alleviate severe congestion” at the Mexico City airport. With each team led by Mexican firms, the shortlisted architects, which also include SOM, Gensler, Pascall+Watson and Teodoro González de León with Taller de Arquitectura X, have been asked to envision a 70-gate, phased expansion capable of hosting 40-million passengers per year. A schematic masterplan has been provided by . Completion of the first phases is tentatively planned for 2018. 

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Williamson Chong to Receive RAIC’s Emerging Practice Award

Frogs Hollow / . Image © Bob Gundu

First an Emerging Voices recipient, now a laureate of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada’s () Emerging Architectural Practice Award; Toronto’s Williamson Chong Architects has proved themselves to be one of Northern America’s most promising firms. Founded just three short years ago, the seven-person practice has been chosen to be the RAIC’s second Emerging Practice Award recipient for “consistently producing innovating projects that contain quality detailing and craftsmanship.”

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Exhibition: Bowlarama: California Bowling Architecture, 1954-1964

Holiday Bowl / © Jack Laxer

Text by Isaac Wilhelm:

“Patrons of the A+D Architecture and Design Museum Los Angeles may want to consider wearing comfortable socks to view the new exhibit Bowlarama: California Bowling Architecture 1954-1964, on display from April 11, 2014, through May 11, 2014. Providing a deeper appreciation for the family heirloom bowling trophy on the fire mantle, the exhibit showcases the architecture of bowling in the 1950s. The retro design style and obsession with the sport of bowling at this time generated a desire for architecturally intriguing bowling centers. 

Commonly open 24 hours a day in the 1950s, bowling centers incorporated features such as fine restaurants, cocktail lounges, and live entertainment. The projects of this exhibit are not about the sport of bowling or the centers, but rather the culture that emerged. Do not contemplate how many lanes are in the exhibit’s bowling centers, but instead imagine the blonde beauty sitting at the cocktail bar sipping on a martini during the local men’s league championship tournament.”

Title: Exhibition: Bowlarama: California Bowling Architecture, 1954-1964
Website: https://aplusd.org/exhibitions-future/bowlarama
From: Fri, 11 Apr 2014 
Until: Sun, 11 May 2014 
Venue: Architecture and Design Museum
Address: 6032 Wilshire Boulevard, , CA 90036, USA

Exhibition: In Between Projects / PRODUCTORA

The architectural firm PRODUCTORA, based in , is presenting 9 unbuilt projects that have a clear relation to geometry and mathematical composition. Large-scale models, made in collaboration with students at Woodbury University are presented together with black and white CAD drawing that clarify the main conceptual aspect of the building. 

The simple positioning of the framed drawings, renderings and wooden models on the exhibition floor, avoids all museographic rhetoric and presents the work as autonomous objects in space. The title ‘In Between Projects’ relates to the ongoing development of a common formal vocabulary that underlies the circumstantial aspects of each individual project. This exploration is presented through an image loop of preliminary study models of the projects presented. Ultimately, the exhibition underscores the studio’s belief that strong geometric compositions and clearly legible buildings allow architecture to maintain its value through unpredictable shifts in context and program over time.

Title: Exhibition: In Between Projects / PRODUCTORA
Website: http://architecture.woodbury.edu/in-between-projects-opening/
Organizers: Woodbury School of Architecture
From: Tue, 08 Apr 2014 
Until: Fri, 25 Apr 2014
Venue: WEDGE Gallery
Address: 7500 North Glenoaks Boulevard, Woodbury University, , CA 91504, USA

15 Practices Shortlisted for Russian Cultural Center Competition

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Fifteen of 100 hopeful practices have been chosen to move forward in the second stage of the international “Russian Character” competition. Challenged to design a multi-functional Culture & Education Center for the newly developed Butovo Park residential district, the applicants will now begin to envision their proposals for the new venue. Once complete, the center will provide space for lectures, film screenings, indoor (and outdoor) concerts and master classes, as well as various outdoor sports activities and a museum that will showcase exhibitions on the the area’s history. The 15 shortlisted practices are…

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Brooks + Scarpa Design Park-And-Ride Plaza for Seattle Rail Station

© Brooks + Scarpa

Brooks + Scarpa has won a competition to design a new park-and-ride plaza for the future Angle Lake light rail station in . As part of the 1.6-mile South 200th Link Extension, which will connect Angle Lake to the and downtown area by 2016, the $30 million complex will provide the station’s anticipated 5,400 passengers with a pedestrianized plaza, drop-off and retail area, as well as a 1,050-stall parking garage and 35,000 square feet of reserved space for future transit-oriented development.

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What’s the Reality of Architectural Labor in the US? Take the Survey Now

Courtesy of The Architecture Lobby

The Architecture Lobby has released a seventy-question survey that seeks to gather a broad range of data about architectural work–from firm standards and policies to worker satisfaction–which will provide open-source information about the realities of architectural labor in the US. We will publish the results in the coming months; in the meantime you can aid in the by taking The Architecture Lobby survey here (open through April).

Barclays Center to be Topped with Massive Green Roof

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Developers Forest City Ratner Companies (FCRC) and Greenland Group have decided to realize SHoP Architects’ original plan to top Brooklyn’s Barclays Center with a 130,000 square foot green roof. Though the design was first disregarded due to budget cuts, the developers have deemed it necessary to enhance the marketability the Atlantic Yards’ three residential towers – the first is currently underway – and dampen the noise from loud concerts. Little details have been released about the green roof’s design, however rumor has it that it might not be open to the public as it was originally intended. 

Launch: PROJECT’s Latest Issue

The editors of PROJECT invite you to celebrate the release of Issue Three at common room, 465 Grand St., , NY, this Wednesday, April 9 from 7pm to 9pm. investigates the possibilities for developing a a critical position in contemporary architecture. Publishing both visual and written work, the goal of is to provide a platform for disseminating ideas.

Issue Three of PROJECT features contributions from common room & Kim Förster, Reinier de Graaf (OMA/AMO), Neil Denari, Edward Eigen, Formless Finder, Adam Fure, John May, Magnus Nilsson, Valerio Olgiati Architect, Pezo von Ellrichshausen, Lola Sheppard (Lateral Office), Jill Stoner, Tom Wiscombe and more. Refreshments will be served, and issues of PROJECT will be available for sale.

Title: Launch: PROJECT’s Latest Issue
Website: http://projectjournal.org/
From: Wed, 09 Apr 2014 19:00
Until: Wed, 09 Apr 2014 21:00
Address: 465 Grand Street, New York, NY 10002, USA

SOM Chosen to Design New Learning Facility for Barnard College

John Jay College of Criminal Justice / SOM. Image © Eduard Hueber

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) has been chosen to design a new teaching and learning facility for – Columbia University’s world-renowned liberal arts college for women. The selection committee chose SOM after deeming them the best candidate in three categories: “a history of creative and innovative architecture,” a proven recorded on similar academic projects, and “an internal commitment to woman’s leadership reflected by women holding key roles in the firm.”

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Designing for Sound In Our Everyday Spaces

The syn chron space by Carsten Nicolai was designed to combine experiences of and light. Image Courtesy of artcentron.com

In this interesting article in the New York Times, Allison Arieff highlights the often unconsidered importance of sound in architecture (outside of theaters and museums at least). She profiles the work of Acoustic Engineers at ARUP who have begun to work inschools and hospitals, taking into account the effects poor sound environments can have on us in our everyday lives. You can read the full article here.

International Symposium for Social and Humanitarian Architecture

Next Month, the Mackintosh School of Architecture (The School of Art) will host its first International Symposium for Social and Humanitarian Architecture, ‘Clean Conscience Dirty Hands’, in the new Reid Building by Steven Holl Architects. The symposium focuses on the limited resources intrinsic to the provision of social and humanitarian architecture and the impact of such scarcity on the ability of organisations to ‘harness’ the learning from each built project through documentation, discussion and dissemination. As such, it seeks to provide both a locus and a forum for like-minded organisations engaged in social and humanitarian building projects, in order to capture and disseminate good practice in both a -based and overseas context.

International and award-winning speakers representing a multitude of organisations, including MASS Design Group, TYIN Tegnestue, Architecture for Humanity, London Metropolitan University, Peter Rich Architects and Orkidstudio will gather to discuss a range of ideas relating to one of the three topics broadly covered by the symposium:

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Call for Submissions: Thresholds 43

Gasp! What provokes this reflex that leaves one short of breath? More than just a sudden turn of events, for discourse to move from gossip to scandal there have to be stakes. Reputations, profits, and history-by-the-winners are on the line. 

In 1939, architect George W. Stoddard understood these stakes well when writing his apology to the AIA Board of Directors. “There are times in every man’s life when he does things on the spur of the moment that he later regrets,” Stoddard implored after flouting a professional ban on advertising.  The popular newspaper tabloid from following decades trafficked in one form of scandal surrounding the crime of regrettable deeds: originating in the private sphere and then splashed in the public one. These stories trade in schadenfreude while simultaneously performing in the interest of public good.

Stoddard’s delinquent act barely raises the contemporary pulse. Today, shocking headlines proliferate. If scandal shapes and reflects the historical moment, what does this de-sensitization say about our current condition? Many artists and architects operate fully conscious of an anaesthetized public. Thresholds 43: Scandalous seeks to investigate the relevance of scandal in creative practice. Content should confront a history of devious schemes, spectacular headlines, and pulp fictions by engaging them in critical conversation.

Scandal, we believe, is the red flag of every cultural movement. Sin segues into standards. Take Corbusier’s Plan Voisin and subsequent tower in the park offshoots, or Mapplethorpe’s The Perfect Moment that opened a new era of artistic provocations concerning public funding and censorship. This potential for transition, from shocking to ubiquitous, leads the editors of Thresholds to subvert a pursuit of the ‘goods’ and instead ask: what is ‘bad’? How does scandal emerge from or act counter to institutional and social contracts? How do changing forms of media, from the catchy hashtag to the news alert, incite slander or even revolution? Why does scandal destroy some while elevating others? Which sites are labeled crime scenes?

Submission Guidelines 

Submission Deadline: April 30, 2014 

Thresholds is an annual, peer-reviewed journal that accepts original material for publication.

Thresholds is looking for three types of content: Scholarly articles, projects, and shorts.

1. Scholarly articles: Text should be in English, limited to 3,000 words, and formatted in accordance with the Manual of Style. Images should be included separately at 300 dpi print quality, with captions and credits.

2. Projects: Image-based content of creative practices formatted for print publication. Thresholds is formatted with an individual page size of 6.5” x 9.5”  (portrait) and spread size of 13” x 9.5”.

3. Shorts: Brief creative content, such as a sketch, rant, or overheard, to serve as a break between featured articles and projects. Guidelines are open.

Submissions should include a cover letter, contact information and brief bio of under 50 words for each author. Text as MS Word, images as TIFF files. All material should be submitted to thresholds@mit.edu

More info can be found here.

Nathan Friedman and Ann Lui, Editors
Thresholds, MIT Architecture
77 Massachusetts Ave, Room 7-337
Cambridge, MA 02139
thresholds@mit.edu