Culture Art Center Changsha / Coop Himmelb(l)au

Courtesy of ISOCHROM.com, Vienna

Coop Himmelb(l)au has come up with an incredibly unique design for the new Grand Theatre and International Culture & Art Center for ChangshaChina. The site is located on the northeastern side of the newly created Changsha Meixi Lake in the Daheexi District, with the design engaging both land and water with a flowing and undulating white form of enormous scale. The architects hope to create a new cultural center that interacts with the existing natural landscape, not only visually, but scientifically by running on alternative energy sources and efficient passive energy systems to reduce environmental impact.

The architects’ description after the break…

R House / Frei + Saarinen

© Stefan Wülser, Zürich

Architects: Frei + Saarinen
Location: Kilchberg, Zurich,
Architect In Charge: Barbara Frei, Martin Saarinen, Stefan Wülser
Year: 2012
Photographs: Stefan Wülser, Zürich

Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability / Perkins + Will

© Martin Tessler

Architects: Perkins + Will
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Design Team: Peter Busby, Martin Nielsen, Maginnis Cocivera, Sebastien Garon, Brian Gasmena, Jörk Grävenstein, Horace Lai, Blair McCarry, Z Smith
Area: 5,675 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Martin Tessler

2013 AIA New York Design Awards

Perot Museum of Nature and Science © Shu He

After reviewing hundreds of projects submitted by New York City-based architects and firms, a jury of twelve eminent architects, landscape architects, educators, critics, and planners convened by the Center for Architecture in New York has selected 42 thoughtfully considered projects for the 2013 AIANY Chapter’s Design Awards. From small installations to large-scale projects, each awarded submission spanned a breadth of innovative ideas in a large variety of design solutions for projects throughout the world.

Winning submissions received either a “honor” or “merit” award in four different categories: architecture, interiors, projects and . All will be on view at a Center for Architecture exhibition designed by Kokoro & Moi, from April 18th through May 31st.

Join us after for the complete list of winning projects. Click on the project image for more information.

The Invitation / Van Rooijen Architecten

© Cornbread Works

Architects: Van Rooijen Architecten
Location: , The Netherlands
Architect In Charge: Van Rooijen Nourbakhsh Architecten
Interior Architect: Van Rooijen Nourbakhsh Architecten
Photographs: Cornbread Works

U.S. EPA: Strategies for Advancing Smart Growth, Environmental Justice, and Equitable Development

Creating Equitable, Healthy, and Sustainable Communities: Strategies for Advancing Smart Growth, , and Equitable Development

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released an extensive new publication that serves as a guide for low-income, minority, tribal and overburdened communities to build smart, environmentally just, and equitable developments using strategies that are accessible and affordable.  The guidelines build upon precedents of past successes within struggling communities, whether these struggles are in the face of discrimination, social or economic prejudices, or environmental injustice.  The identifies seven common elements that have been illustrated in in-depth case studies of communities that have struggled with those very issues.  By targeting community groups, governmental agencies, private and non-profit partners, regional and local planners and residents of these communities, the ’s smart growth guide for “Creating Equitable, Healthy and Sustainable Communities: Strategies for Advancing Smart Growth, Environmental Justice, and Equitable Development” seeks to bring access to valuable information about the inherent possibilities to creating healthful, sustainable, and prosperous communities under a variety of circumstances.

Join us after the break for a breakdown of the EPA’s findings and how they address equitability in community development.

House in Itu / Studio Arthur Casas

© FG + SG

Architects: Studio Arthur Casas
Location: ,
Leading Architect: Arthur Casas
Design Team: Alexandra Kayat, Regiane Khristian, Renata Adoni
Area: 950 sqm
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: FG + SG - Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

Courtesy of Green Works Orlando
Courtesy of Green Works Orlando

Envision 2040: Green Works Orlando Design Competition

The City of Orlando‘s Mayor, Buddy Dyer, has challenged the community to develop a plan that would transform Orlando, within a generation, into one of the most environmentally-friendly, economically and socially vibrant communities in the nation. In an effort to do…

How to Balance Local Traditions and New Solutions in Public-Interest Design

by MASS Design Group. Image © Iwan Baan.

Marika Shioiri-Clark is an architect who uses design to empower global change and battle inequality. While attending Harvard for her Masters in Architecture, she co-founded the non-profit MASS Design Group and began working on what would become the the Butaro Hospital in Rwanda. In this article, which originally appeared on GOOD as “Building a Rwandan Wall”, she explains the process by which the hospital was built and defends claims that the project, led by a group of Western architects, was somehow colonialist in nature. 

As she puts it: “In a place like , it’s not neo-colonialist to work on high-quality design projects as long as you’re deeply and authentically engaged with the community. In today’s world, it’s more neo-colonialist to assume that African people don’t want well-designed buildings and spaces.”

Read about Ms. Shiori-Clark’s experiences, and the delicate balance that must be struck between local knowledge and innovative techniques, after the break…

The Yardmaster’s Building / McBride Charles Ryan

© John Gollings

Architects: McBride Charles Ryan
Location: ,
Design Team: Rob McBride, Debbie Ryan, Drew Williamson, Andrew Hayne, Fang Cheah, Michelle James, Scott Crowe, Johanna Brunner, Angela Woda, David Fraser
Area: 1,350 sqm
Year: 2009
Photographs: John Gollings

The Indicator: On Disappearance, Part 2

Factory Worker Dormitory, Dongguan, Guangdong Province, 2005. Photograph, Edward Burtynsky

As Mr. Betsky asserts, “Robots, connected computers, miniaturization, and etherization are taking the work out of both the social and the physical sphere.” But isn’t this just a fantasy because this has not yet happened on a large enough scale to produce a true paradigm shift? Or, if the shift has happened, then where is everybody rushing off to on the Monday morning commute? And what are all those buildings jammed in-between the roads for? Most of them seem to be for work as opposed to play.  

We may all float in and out of working networks as we move around, untethered to carpeted cubicles, telecommuting, flex-timing, logging in at all hours, but we are still and will primarily be working in places designed by architects—often without access to sunlight, fresh air, or nature of any sort.

YAK01 / AA-D

© Piyawut Srisakul

Architects: AA-D
Location: ,
Architect In Charge: Ayutt Mahasom
Interior Designer: Ayutt Mahasom
Landscape Designer: Ayutt Mahasom
Area: 500 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Piyawut Srisakul

Re-Think Athens Competition Entry / ABM Arquitectos

Courtesy of

The main idea of ABM Arquitectos in their Re-Think proposal, which was a finalist in the competition, is to join the two parks at the end of the intervention (Pedion Areos and Lotos Likavitou) with a green mass that will flow all along the intervention. By doing this, the architects hope to bringvback the greenery to an area that used to be a green zone in the outside of the old walls and creating a green corridor that joins the old with the new . More images and architects’ description after the break.

Courtesy of Sapienza, Università di Roma's School of Architecture
Courtesy of Sapienza, Università di Roma's School of Architecture

OBRA Architects: Castro & O’Brien Lecture

Taking place this Thursday, March 14th at the Sapienza, Università di Roma‘s School of Architecture, OBRA Architects‘ Pablo Castro and William O’Brien… will be delivering the lecture where these two Rome Prize Fellows at the American Academy in Rome will discuss

Malpartida House / Cuartoymitad Arquitectura

© Lucía Miret

Architects: Cuartoymitad Arquitectura
Location: Cáceres,
Architect In Charge: Ana Miret, Miguel Paredes, Ruth Vega
Contractor: Pajuelo SL
Year: 2012
Photographs: Lucía Miret

Courtesy of C+S Architects
Courtesy of C+S Architects

C+S Architects: ‘Feeling Contexts’ Exhibition

Summarizing the philosophy and methodology of C+S Architects, the Keller Gallery at MIT Department of Architecture will serve as a new context for the work of C+S Architects. As if lifted from their Treviso, Italy studio and planted directly within…

House in Sanbonmatsu / Hironaka Ogawa & Associates

© Daici Ano

Architects: Hironaka Ogawa & Associates
Location: , Japan
Area: 253.03 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Daici Ano

Shipara / SDeG

© Clare Arni

Architects: SDeG
Location: , India
Design Team: Sujit, Balaji
Project Team : Sujit, Balaji, Gayathri, Anju, Darshan, Prabhakar, Ananya
Structural Design: Eco Consultants
Contractor (Civil): JK Constructions
Area: 340 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Clare Arni