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British Council Launches Open Call for First Ever Exhibition of Antarctica Architecture

In order to illustrate the ingeniuity and innovation of contemporaray architecture, the British Council and curated by the Arts Catalyst, Ice Lab: New Architecture and Science in Antarctica has declared an open call for an international touring exhibition that will feature architecture of Antarctica.  With one of the most extreme and desolate environments on the planet, the facilities must be laboratories and residences for scientists working in this distant terrain. The exhibition will feature five designs for Antarctica research stations: British Antarctic Survey's Halley VI by Hugh Broughton Architects; Princess Elisabeth Antarctic by International Polar Foundation; Bharati Research Station by bof Architekten / IMS; Jang Bogo Korea by Space Group; and the Iceberg Living Station by MAP Architects.

Pappas Headquarters - Mercedes Salzburg / Kadawittfeldarchitektur

  • Architects: Kadawittfeldarchitektur
  • Location: Salzburg, Austria
  • Architect in Charge: Dirk zweering
  • Area: 41550.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2006
  • Photographs: Angelo Kaunat, Gerhard Hagen, Andreas Körner

© Gerhard Hagen © Andreas Körner © Gerhard Hagen © Gerhard Hagen

House in Madrid / A-cero

  • Architects: A-cero
  • Location: Madrid, Spain
  • Director: Joaquín Torres
  • Architect Partner: Rafael Llamazares
  • Area: 2840.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Jacobo España

© Jacobo España © Jacobo España © Jacobo España © Jacobo España

Torre David - Informal Vertical Communities Exhibition

Organized by ETH Zurich Department of Architecture and Urban Design, with Alfredo Billembroug & Hubert Klumpner of Urban-Think Tank, the 'Torre David - Informal Vertical Communities' exhibition is an adaptation and evolution of the installation on Torre David that was presented at the 2012 Biennale di Venezia, where it was awarded the Golden Lion. Taking place at Aedes Berlin from July 12-August 29, the Torre David project will be presented in an extended format and will include new research on the intersection between verticality and informal communities. More information on the exhibition after the break.

+ Pool Launches 'Tile by Tile' Kickstarter Campaign

+ Pool, the ambitious project to float a public swimming pool in New York's East River, has recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund "Tile by Tile," what will be the largest crowdfunded civic project to date. Those who back the pool will be rewarded by having their name engraved on one of the pool's 70,000 tiles.

+ Pool will filter the river water to give users a clean, safe yet natural environment to swim in and provide space for all types of "swimmers, bathers and hanger-outers" in each of its four sections. The current campaign's primary aim is to fund an in-situ floating test lab which will, for the first time, prove the feasibility of filtering river water by testing various potential filtration systems.

Read more about the + Pool and the growing trend towards crowdfunding after the break...

Helsinki Central Library Winning Proposal / ALA Architects

ALA Architects have just won the design competition for the new Helsinki Central Library with their entry “Käännös”. Located in the heart of Helsinki, the 16,000 square meter library building will consist almost entirely of public spaces and will offer a wide selection of services. It will serve as the new central point for the city’s impressive public library network and is slated to open in 2018. More images and architects' description after the break.

AD Interviews OMA, BIG on their Miami Showdown

Over the last few months, OMA and BIG have been vying for the opportunity to redevelop the 52-acre site home to the convention center in the heart of Miami Beach. With two award-winning, international firms at the center of the showdown, the media frenzy has been intense and the public’s imagination activated. It only remains to be seen if the results, which promise to be visionary, surpass expectation. With so much on the line, we decided to sit down with both OMA and BIG and discuss how their proposals differ.

Play Perch / Syracuse University

Courtesy of Syracuse University
Courtesy of Syracuse University
  • Architects: Syracuse University School of Architecture
  • Location: East Genesee St, Syracuse NY
  • Architect in Charge: Syracuse University School of Architecture faculty members Larry Bowne and Sinéad Mac Namara
  • Student Designers: Ford Bostwick, John Cardone, Jeffery Cheung, George Guarino, Zachary Harwin, Christina Hoover, Brian Luce, Sean Morgan, Sally Morrow, Doug Moskowitz, Steven O’Hara, Michael Palmer, Michaelle Williams, Mark Zlotsky, Ben Anderson-Nelson, Tom Arleo, Jessica Borri, Gabriel Boyajian, Charles Brock, John Coleman, Mark Hernandez, Tyler Holdren, Dong Min Shin, Winnie Tu, Emily Wutz, Sherina Zheng, Daniel Hopkins
  • Area: 250.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2013
  • Photographs: Courtesy of Syracuse University

Courtesy of Syracuse University Courtesy of Syracuse University Courtesy of Syracuse University Courtesy of Syracuse University

Ama'r Children's Culture House / Dorte Mandrup

© Jens Lindhe
© Jens Lindhe

© Torben Eskerod © Torben Eskerod Courtesy of Dorte Mandrup © Jens Lindhe

Law May Render Architects Unnecessary in Spain

As if architects in Spain weren't struggling enough - what with the Crisis closing half the country's studios and putting over 25% of Spanish architects out of work - a new law could now render Spanish architects effectively unnecessary.

A preliminary document reveals that, if passed, The Law of Professional Services (LSP) will modify labor regulations in order to allow engineers, or really any one "competent" in construction, to take on the work of architects: 

“Exclusivity is eliminated. Architects or engineers with competency in construction will be able to design and direct projects, including residential, cultural, academic or religious buildings. [...] If a professional is competent enough to execute one building’s construction, it is understood that he/she will also be capable of executing other kinds of buildings, regardless of its intended use.”

Unsurprisingly, Spanish architects have risen up against the law, mobilizing both physical protests as well as social media campaigns. Even Pritzker-Prize winner Rafael Moneo has offered his opinion on the matter...Hear what Moneo has to say, after the break...

New Concrete House / Wespi de Meuron

  • Architects: Wespi de Meuron
  • Location: Sant'Abbondio, Gambarogno, Switzerland
  • Area: 148.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Hannes Henz

© Hannes Henz © Hannes Henz © Hannes Henz © Hannes Henz

UCLA Outpatient Surgery and Oncology Center / Michael W. Folonis Architects

© Tom Bonner
© Tom Bonner
  • Architects: Michael W. Folonis Architects
  • Location: 1223 16th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90404, USA
  • Project Architect: Rudy Gonzalez
  • Design Team: James Kersten, Tommy Johnson
  • Area: 50000.0 ft2
  • Photographs: Tom Bonner

© Tom Bonner © Tom Bonner © Tom Bonner © Tom Bonner


Akin to the process of building a ship in a bottle, the construction of Casa Murray was conditioned to the amount of space in which it is placed. Projected and built by Diseño Espacial, the house is enclosed by irregular constructions, remains of imprecise divisions of lots that gave place to a narrow corridor, an easement that functions as the only access to the house. It is a construction without facade, without parking space, without a gas installation, solar collectors or a single spot where the street can be observed. 

China's Pre-Fab Skyscraper: Revolutionary or Mad? Two Architects Debate...

The architecture world has been abuzz over news that aChinese construction company plans to build the world's tallest building— and to do it in just 90 daysusing a proprietary prefabrication technique.

Construction on the 838-meter highrise in Changsha, called Sky City Oneis expected to begin this month.

After the project was announced, we reached out to Christian Sottile, the Dean of the School of Building Arts at the Savannah College of Art and Design,who gave us his takeon why the project is a terrible step for architecture and urban living.

But not everyone is skeptical about Sky City One.Stan Klemanowicz,an architect and planner in Los Angeles with Project Development Associates, reached out to tell us why the project is actually revolutionary. He has allowed us to publish his response to Mr. Sottile's critique.

Read Sottile's and Klemanowicz's conflicting opinions, after the break...

Shortlist Announced for U.S. Embassy in Beirut

The Department of State’s Overseas Buildings Operations (OBO) has shortlisted six design teams for the new U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon. The project is part of OBO’s Excellence in Diplomatic Facilities initiative in which seeks to provide safe and functional facilities that represent the best in American architecture. 

OMA Leads Pont Jean-Jacques Bosc Competition in Bordeaux

© OMA, Artefactory, Frans Parthesius
© OMA, Artefactory, Frans Parthesius

City officials have selected OMA’s “stripped-down design” as one of two final projects for the Pont Jean-Jacques Bosc international competition in Bordeaux, France. Stretching over the Garonne River, the OMA-designed proposal seeks to rethink the civic function and symbolism of a 21st century bridge by designing a multimodal “platform that can accommodate all the events of the city.”

“We wanted to provide the simplest expression – the least technical, least lyrical, an almost primitive structural solution,” stated Clement Blanchet, the project architect working alongside Rem Koolhaas. “This simplicity allowed us to create a generous platform for pedestrians and public programs, as well as flexibility in accommodating the future needs of various types of traffic.”

More from the project description after the break…

Sports Club / GEO Arquitectos

  • Architects: GEO Arquitectos
  • Location: Alcobendas, Madrid, Spain
  • Architects in Charge: Álvaro Galmés, Arturo Grinda, Miguel Olazábal
  • Area: 2570.0 m2
  • Year: 2011
  • Photographs: Miguel de Guzmán

© Miguel de Guzmán © Miguel de Guzmán © Miguel de Guzmán © Miguel de Guzmán