Vallecas 47 / Estudio UNTERCIO

© Pedro Pegenaute

Architects: Estudio UNTERCIO
Location: Ensanche de Vallecas, , Spain
Design Team: Miguel Herráiz Gómez, Mauro Iván Bravo Hernández, Marina del Mármol Peces, Daniel Bergman Vázquez, Michael Becker
Technical Architect: Alfonso Sáenz García
Year: 2012
Photographs: Pedro Pegenaute

Messe Basel New Hall / Herzog & de Meuron

Courtesy of Messe

Architects: Herzog & de Meuron
Location: Basel,
Partners: Jacques Herzog, Pierre de Meuron, Stefan Marbach (Partner in Charge), Wolfgang Hardt
Client: MCH Swiss Exhibition (Basel) Ltd.
Area: 83,297 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Courtesy of Messe Basel

Update: SFMOMA Expansion / Snøhetta

SFMOMA Expansion Aerial Southeast Façade; Courtesy of MIR and Snøhetta

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) has announced further details of its 235,000-square-foot building expansion that will support the museum’s increasing role in city life and the international art community. Designed by Norway-based practice Snøhetta, in collaboration with local firm the 10-story concrete structure will compliment SFMOMA’s original, Mario Botta-designed, red-brick museum by offering more free-to-the-public space, expanded education programs and an abundance of flexible performance-based gallery space.

Construction will commence this Summer and is expected to reopen in early 2016.

More after the break…

SFMOMA Expansion Howard St. entrance; Courtesy of MIR and Snøhetta

SFMOMA’s new building will include seven levels dedicated to diverse art experiences and programming spaces, along with three housing enhanced support space for the museum’s operations. It will also offer approximately 130,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor gallery space, as well as nearly 15,000 square feet of art-filled free-access public space, more than doubling SFMOMA’s current capacity for the presentation of art while maintaining a sense of intimacy and connection to the museum’s urban surroundings. Other notable features include:

A large glass-walled gallery (interior view) on ground level with free public access will beckon passersby on Howard Street; rendering: Courtesy of MIR and Snøhetta
  • A large-scale vertical garden located in a new outdoor sculpture terrace on the third floor, which will be the biggest public living wall of native plants in San Francisco.
  • A versatile, double-height “white box” space on the fourth floor equipped with cutting-edge lighting and sound systems that, in tandem with the museum’s upgraded Phyllis
  • Wattis Theater, will open new doors for SFMOMA’s program of live art, and also improve services for school-group tours, film screenings, and special events.
  • State-of-the-art conservation studios on the seventh and eighth floors that will further SFMOMA’s progressive work in the care and interpretation of its growing collections.
  • An environmentally sensitive approach on track to achieve LEED Gold certification, with 15% energy-cost reduction, 30% water-use reduction, and 20% reduction in wastewater generation.
  • A new outdoor terrace on the seventh floor with incredible city views, further integrating the urban indoor/outdoor experience that SFMOMA began in 2009 with the opening of its current rooftop sculpture garden on the fifth floor.
SFMOMA’s new Snøhetta-designed stair (view from Third Street entrance) shown here with previous atrium art installation by Sol LeWitt (inaugural art installation for 2016 reopening to be announced); Rendering: Steelblue
Versatile “white box” space (interior view) on fourth floor of expanded SFMOMA will create new possibilities for live performance and education programs; rendering: Courtesy of MIR and Snøhetta

At the same time, as previously announced, new public spaces and additional public entrances to the building (on Howard and Minna Streets) are designed to increase access and weave the museum more deeply into the neighborhood. A mid-block, street-level pedestrian promenade will open a new route of circulation in the area, enlivening the side streets and offering a pathway between SFMOMA and the Transbay Transit Center currently under construction two blocks east of the museum. Building on the popularity of the museum’s artist commissions in its admission-free atrium, an expansive free-to-access gallery on the ground floor with 25-foot-high glass walls facing Howard Street will now place art—such as Richard Serra’s enormous walk-in spiral sculpture Sequence (2006)—on view to passersby for the first time. This gallery will also feature stepped seating, offering a resting and gathering point for museum tour groups and neighborhood denizens alike.

Sculpture terrace extending from Howard to Minna Streets will be framed on one side by a vibrant vertical garden; rendering: Courtesy of MIR and Snøhetta

“SFMOMA has had a tremendous impact on the economic and vitality of the South of Market neighborhood and the city,” says San Francisco’s District 6 Supervisor Jane Kim. “Even though this area is one of the city’s oldest, in many ways it’s still the freshest, where much of the most dramatic change is happening. The museum’s expanded home in this center will provide even greater public access and support to emerging and established artists as a hub of creativity and international art destination. I look forward to seeing the district grow and evolve even further as SFMOMA’s future takes shape.”

SFMOMA Expansion Night Aerial from Howard St.; Courtesy of MIR and Snøhetta

News via SFMOMA  

Patagonia Lodge / Cooprogetti Arquitectos

© Fabio Stingo & Alejandro Macaya

Architects: Cooprogetti Arquitectos
Location: Villa O’Higgins, XI Región de Aysén,
Design Team: Fabio Stingo, Gustavo Langerfeldt
Area: 540 sqm
Year: 2010
Photographs: Fabio Stingo & Alejandro Macaya

Herzog & de Meuron’s Elbphilharmonie to be Completed by 2017

© Martin Wippel

Sitting idle since November 2011, Herzog & de Meuron’s long-running Elbphilharmonie concert hall in Hamburg, Germany, has left residents wondering when will the music ever begin?

First envisioned back in 2003, the enormous crystalline glass structure stands nearly complete on top a historic warehouse on the edge of the River Elbe. Rising costs, delayed schedules and legal issues with the contractor, have plagued this magnificent concert hall with controversy. However, according a report in the German news magazine Der Spiegel, contractor Hochtief has initiated a new deal to ensure the completion of the building.

A revised contract, which is expect to adjust the architect’s fee’s to €94 million (€17 million over the original project cost), has projected Elbphilharmonie will be completed within the next four years. The news is bittersweet, as the architectural community and the residents of have been waiting years for this highly anticipated concert hall to be complete, yet they cringe at the news of an overblown €575 million price tag.

Fender Custom Shop Mexico City / Arquitectura en Movimiento

© Cuauhtémoc García

Architects: Arquitectura en Movimiento
Location: City,
Area: 200 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Cuauhtémoc García

Video: Gary Card, Leader of The Pack


The set designer, illustrator and all-round polymath, whose been named everything from “one to watch” to “the Geek who stole Christmas.”

Courtesy of Shirdel and Associates Architects
Courtesy of Shirdel and Associates Architects

Padideh Kish Competition Winning Proposal / Shirdel and Associates Architects

The first prize winning proposal in the competition to design the masterplan of Padideh Kish, a destination resort in Kish Island, Iran, creates a fantastic and exciting place to improve and deepen the experience of a trip and remain in…

New Aveiro Train Station / JLLA

© Leonardo Finotti

Architects: JLLA
Location: , Portugal
Design Team: João Lúcio Lopes, Gemma Vila, Paulo Gouveia, Rui Fortes, Vitor Coutinho Lopes
Structural Engineer: Carlos Baptista
Landscape : Gibb-Portugal
Area: 12,000 sqm
Photographs: Leonardo Finotti

Escola da Cidade Last Call for Post Graduation 2013

Courtesy of

Only a few days are left to apply to São Paulo’s Escola da Cidade – School of Architecture and Urbanism. Since 2009, the college has offered specialization courses; this year it is offering two non-degree graduate courses under the theme of  ”American Civilization – A Look through Architecture” ‘Housing and City’ and ‘Geography, City and Architecture’. 

LA Architecture School Boasts Stimulating Post-professional Programs

© SCI-Arc ESTm, Marcelo Spina Studio, Artificial Clouds

Two dynamic post-graduate programs offered by the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) in Los Angeles have been charged with examining core contemporary issues facing architecture today. Spanning topics from advanced manufacturing methodologies and new building systems, to and design challenges faced globally, these post-professional tracks allow students to rethink architecture and design through the creative lens of the SCI-Arc community.

The architecture school’s Emerging Systems, Technologies & Media (ESTm) and Future Initiatives (SCIFI) programs are conceived as intensive one-year (three semesters) post-professional degrees in architecture, functioning as think tanks and research engines within the larger framework of the school.

How Our Cities Keep Us Single (And Why That Has to Change)

BIG’s 2012 Valentine’s Day installation in New York City. Image © Ho Kyung Lee

In 1969, zoologist Desmond Morris released a book titled The Human Zoo; in it, he argued that human beings, tribal by nature, aren’t wired to live in the big, crowded modern-day cities we find ourselves in:

“Some people call the city a ‘concrete jungle’ — but jungles aren’t like that. Animals in jungles aren’t overcrowded. And overcrowding is the central problem of modern city life. If you want to look for crowded animals, you have to look in the zoo. And then it occurred to me: The city is not a concrete jungle — it’s a human zoo.

Humans in a city are like animals in a zoo. It’s a fascinating claim, one that led me to a rather unusual thought. 

If we take for granted Morris’ claim that the city is essentially a human zoo, and that, as we are all aware, it’s far more difficult for animals to mate in captivity, then – could cities actually limit our capacity for love? As our world becomes more and more urbanized, will it also become more lonely? 

Is there any way to stop it?

Sou Fujimoto to design the 2013 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion

2013 Designed by , Interior Indicative CGI © Studio Cyrille Thomas for Architects

Today, the Serpentine Gallery announced the architect that will design the 13th edition of the . Every year the gallery invites a renowned international architects who have not built yet in the UK, to design a temporary pavilion that hosts public activities in at the Gallery’s lawn, in London’s Hyde Park between June and October. The list of architects for the past editions includes several Pritzker laureates. More info of this program at our Serpentine Gallery Pavilion infographic.

The Japanese architect based in Tokyo established his firm Sou Fujimoto Architects  back in 2000. He graduated from the Department of Architecture at the University of Tokyo in 1994, and has been a lecturer at Kyoto University since 2007. With a solid trajectory in residential and cultural projects, the firm has consistently shown a unique and innovative approach to the spatial qualities within his buildings, exploring new ways of housing design, space and materials. Sou was also part of the team that won the Golden Lion at the 13th Venice Biennale, with “Architecture, possible here? Home-for-All”, the Japan pavilion. 

Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2013 Designed by Sou Fujimoto, Exterior Indicative CGI  © Studio Cyrille Thomas for Sou Fujimoto Architects

About the design of the pavilion Sou stated: “For the 2013 Pavilion I propose an architectural landscape: a transparent terrain that encourages people to interact with and explore the site in diverse ways. Within the pastoral context of KensingtonGardens, I envisage the vivid greenery of the surrounding plant life woven together with a constructed geometry. A new form of environment will be created, where the natural and the man-made merge; not solely architectural nor solely natural, but a unique meeting of the two.

The Pavilion will be a delicate, three-dimensional structure, each unit of which will be composed of fine steel bars. It will form a semi-transparent, irregular ring, simultaneously protecting visitors from the elements while allowing them to remain part of the landscape. The overall footprint will be 350 square-metres and the Pavilion will have two entrances. A series of stepped terraces will provide seating areas that will allow the Pavilion to be used as a flexible, multi-purpose social space.

The delicate quality of the structure, enhanced by its semi-transparency, will create a geometric, cloud-like form, as if it were mist rising from the undulations of the park. From certain vantage points, the Pavilion will appear to merge with the classical structure of the Serpentine Gallery, with visitors suspended in space.”

We are big fans of Sou’s work, and we are very excited to see this project being built at Hyde Park. As usual, expect a complete coverage of this project. You can watch our interview with Sou after the break:

Apartment Building in Lootsi Street / HGA (Hayashi-Grossschmidt Arhitektuur)

© Kalle Veesaar

Architects: HGA (Hayashi-Grossschmidt Arhitektuur)
Location: Tallinn,
Architects In Charge: Hanno Grossschmidt, Tomomi Hayashi, Pille Heinloo
Area: 1701.0 sqm
Year: 2005
Photographs: Kalle Veesaar, Tomomi Hayashi

Courtesy of Elkiær + Ebbeskov Arkitekter
Courtesy of Elkiær + Ebbeskov Arkitekter

‘GROW YOUR CITY’ Suburb of the Future Winning Proposal / Elkiær + Ebbeskov Arkitekter

Elkiær + Ebbeskov Arkitekter… shared with us their winning proposal, titled ‘GROW YOUR CITY’, in the Suburb of the Future competition. The idea is not to reinvent the suburbs from scratch, but they believe that if one is able to

Sluseholmen / Arkitema Architects + Sjoerd Soeters

Courtesy of Arkitema

Architects: Arkitema Architects + Sjoerd Soeters
Location: Sluseholmen, , Denmark
Area: 135,000 sqm
Year: 2008
Photographs: Courtesy of Arkitema

Courtesy of Kokkinou - Kourkoulas Architects
Courtesy of Kokkinou - Kourkoulas Architects

Regeneration of Part of the Piraeus Port Authority (OLP) Coastal Zone Competition Entry / Kokkinou – Kourkoulas Architects

Kokkinou – Kourkoulas Architects… shared with us their proposal in the competition for the redesign of the existing cereals stock house building facilities (SILO) and its surrounding open space into a Museum for Underwater Antiquities. This also includes the regeneration

Hoogvliet / VMX Architects

© Christian Richters

Architects: VMX Architects
Location: Alverstraat, Rotterdam,
Architect In Charge: Don Murphy
Client: Vestia Hoogvliet / Estrade Projecten and Ambap BV Projectontwikkeling
Area: 18,860 sqm
Year: 2007
Photographs: Christian Richters