Two weeks ago we started proposing films relevant to our field for you to primarily enjoy and also to encourage its discussion. First with “The Belly of an Architect”, and then “Blade Runner”, this week is the turn for a slightly more contemporary movie written and directed by Andrew Niccol, Gattaca. The film presents a future were the human condition is already defined in DNA, therefore human’s opportunities for life development are pre-established. Beyond the interesting ethical issue, the architecture where this story occurs is carefully selected in order to fit the director’s image of the future. Locations include the Marin County Civic Center by Frank Lloyd Wright and the CLA Building by Antoine Predock.
The masterplan for the National Creative Cluster by Sasaki Associates integrates the urban form with the surrounding landscape by creating a series of green wedges, interspersed within the urban clusters and forming a series of community parks. Located near Songzhuang, a quiet village on the outskirts of Beijing, the success of the district is tied to its openness, where people can interact in both structured and spontaneous ways to exchange ideas and have constructive dialogue. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The project for an office buiding in Boulogne Billancourt, France consists of the renovation of building B’s existing 10,402m² surface area, the redesign of the facade taking into account the overall structure, the renovation of the technical premises, and the optimizing of office surface space. The competition winning design by Atelier Zündel Cristea is conceived with the logic of functional flexibility in which a central technical core frees the 8 floors, including the ground floor, from bearing concerns.
Built during the 1970’s, building B forms part of a larger whole located at 122, avenue du Général Leclerc, in the Silly-Gallieni neighborhood. The complex is made up of 11 buildings for housing, situated in the northern section of the site, along with the two office buildings, interconnected at ground floor level via a shared lobby with accompanying spaces for businesses to the south. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The public space project by Domitianus Arquitectura of this unique urban neighbourhood comes at a time of re-foundation of the modern process, reflecting in its urban structure the main issues from the time it was done. In this housing complex, their design overcomes the idea of urban center, and instead, long sets of “bands” are adapting along the road structure, promoting advances and setbacks of buildings or misalignments in the implementation of several blocks, situations diversity, which take on greater meaning when incorporated into the structure of green frame. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Architects: Rethink Studio
Location: Pereybere, Mauritius
Project Team: Nitish Chummun, Michael Leclezio, Verity Nesbitt, Yannick Goldsmith
Engineers: Dawn Engineering Ltd.
Project Year: 2011
Project Area: House 01 aprox. 250 sqm, House 02 aprox. 200 sqm
Photographs: Gordon Mackenzie – Kennedy
International architectural practice Swanke Hayden Connell has won the international competition commissioned by Tahincioglu Gayrimenkul (Tahincioglu Real Estate) for the Palladium Tower in Istanbul, Turkey. The 49,500 sq meter tower will be situated on a 1.7 hectare site. The project is due for completion in 2014.
More after the break.
Architects: Estudio Gonzalo Moure – Gonzalo Moure Lorenzo
Location: Escuelas Pías de San Antón, Madrid, Spain
Design Team: Myriam Pascual Luján, Pedro Barranco Vara, Jose María Cristobal González, Marcos S. Gutiérrez, Fernando Ruiz Martínez, Enrique Carreras Rufín, David Torres Barrón, Pablo Matilla Pérez, David Manso Pulido, Verónica San José González
Structure Consultant: Juan Carlos Salvá
Installation Consultant: Ignacio Menéndez-Azcárraga, Integral Ingeniería
Photographs: Jorge Crooke Carballal
Architects: React Architects – Yiorgos Spiridonos, Natasha Deliyianni
Location: Paros Cyclades, Greece
Project Manager: Yiorgos Spiridonos, Architect
Civil Engineer: MFP consulting engineers
Mechanical Study: Gregoriades Dimitris, Mechanical Engineer
Area: 450 sqm
Plot Area: 9,000 sqm
Photographs: Elias Chandelis
In celebration of LEG0’s 80th birthday, Danish Crown Prince Frederik unveiled the world’s largest LEGO tower in South Korea last week. Nearly 4,000 children stacked 50,000 bricks in five days to help build the 105-foot-tall tower in front of Seoul’s Olympic Stadium. The structure surpassed the previous records set last year in France at 103-feet and in Brazil at 102-feet. As reported by The Daily Mail, the record has been broken more than 30 times since the first LEGO tower was constructed in London in 1988 at a height of less than 50-feet.
Architects: Corell Monfort Palacios Arquitectos – Vicente Corell Farinós, Joaquín Monfort, Salvador, José Vicente Palacio Espasa
Location: Valencia, Spain
Partnership in project and construction management: Mariano Conesa Tejada Architect
Engineering: VALNU, servicios de ingeniería
Site manager: CG técnica, José Lozano Gin
Developer / owner: Universidad Politécnica de Valencia
Manufacturer: ECSA-VIALOBRA UTE
Completion: April 2010
Total Area: 17,156.39 sqm
Photograhps: Mariela Apollonio
Stantec’s design for the DjavafMowafaghian Centre for Brain Health at UBC, in Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada is envisioned as a translational research facility defined by present and future medical practices that collaborate under research and patient care. To achieve this, designers considered the intersections within the spatial dynamics of the facility to coordinate interactions between researchers and clinicians. The facility is 134,500 square feet and includes exam / consultation rooms, lab benches, a full conference centre, a brain tissue and DNA bank of samples collected from consenting patients, and patient and animal MRI capabilities.
More after the break.
There are few organizations that would utter the words: “we need to constantly look for ways to make ourselves redundant” (46).
But Architecture for Humanity isn’t your typical organization. Since its inception in 1999, the company has put design professionals in the service of local communities, empowering these locals to the point where, frankly, they don’t need the architects any more.
And Design Like You Give A Damn  : Building Change from the Ground Up, written by Architecture for Humanity co-founders Cameron Sinclair and Kate Stohr, isn’t your typical architecture book. More like an inspiration design manual, Design Like You Give A Damn  offers practical advise and over 100 case studies of projects that share Architecture for Humanity’s mission of building a sustainable future.
Beyond chronicling inspired designs and against-the-odds accomplishments, the book importantly offers a provocative philosophy : architecture belongs, not to the architect, but to the people and the world for whom it is designed.
More about life lessons and tips from Design Like You Give A Damn  after the break…
Commissioned by the Golden Harbor Group, the design for the masterplan for the Honghe project by AECOM is aimed to help Longgang, an emerging area of Shenzhen, to function positively on the city’s renovation and upgrading. Located in a new rising area, the project covers the south area of the main venue for last year’s University Games. Their design will not only become the complex of services in east Shenzhen, but will lead the development of sports and mice industries, which will also be important for Shenzhen to become the base radiation to the development of east Guangdong Province. More images and architects’ description after the break.