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Panguipulli Hotel / G Arquitectos

  • Architects: G Arquitectos
  • Location: Panguipulli, Panguipulli, Los Ríos Region, Chile
  • Project Architects: Tomás García de la Huerta y Xaviera Gleixner
  • Participating Architect: Sergio Briceño
  • Collaborator: Matías Richeda
  • Construction: Sergio Vásquez
  • Structures: Alex Popp
  • Lighting: Francisco Izquierdo
  • Materials: Wood, concrete, and steel
  • Project Area: 700.0 m2
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photography: Sebastián Sepúlveda, Tomás García de la Huerta

© Tomás García de la Huerta © Tomás García de la Huerta © Tomás García de la Huerta © Tomás García de la Huerta

Architecture's First Full-Fledged Experiment in DeafSpace Design

The new residence hall on the campus of Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., was designed by LTL Architects, in collaboration with Quinn Evans Architects and Sigal Construction. Image courtesy of Prakash Patel
The new residence hall on the campus of Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., was designed by LTL Architects, in collaboration with Quinn Evans Architects and Sigal Construction. Image courtesy of Prakash Patel

This article, by Linda Hales, originally appeared on Metropolis Mag as "Clear Line of Sight"

The new dormitory at Gallaudet University exudes raw energy. Rough wood planks, exposed steel, polished concrete, and gleaming bamboo unite to provide architectural muscle. But the real power comes from a barely detectable dynamic. That energy doesn’t come from how the structure looks on its historic Washington D.C. campus, but how the building functions for the people inside. “It’s about how buildings structure and frame human interaction,” says David J. Lewis of LTL Architects. “The basic conditions of architecture were brought to the fore.”

The glass entry door slides open with a soft whoosh. Students ignore it as they crowd through the gap in a jumbled dance of elbows, hands, arms, and animated faces. Gallaudet is the preeminent liberal arts institution for youth who are deaf or hard of hearing, and most of its 1,821 students communicate with the expansive gestures and expressions of American Sign Language (ASL). That the students can make their way into the building without using their hands to open the door—thus halting the flow of the conversation—is cause for celebration. Here, at least, architecture has gotten out of their way.

20 Social Housing in Paris / h2o architectes

© Stéphane Chalmeau
© Stéphane Chalmeau
  • Architects: h2o architectes
  • Location: Rue Godefroy Cavaignac, 75011 Paris, France
  • Engineering: Louis Choulet
  • Area: 1850.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2013
  • Photographs: Stéphane Chalmeau

© Stéphane Chalmeau © Stéphane Chalmeau © Stéphane Chalmeau © Stéphane Chalmeau

Why Bankruptcy May Be the Best Thing for Detroit

While the rest of the world scoffs at Detroit’s recent announcement of bankruptcy (using it as an opportunity to bemoan how far the city - and the country - has fallen since its golden Motown days), many Detroiters themselves are embracing the move as a long overdue turning point.

Like Las Vegas, undergoing an urban patronage from Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, Detroit has similarly been the focus of its own CEO: native-Detroiter and Quicken founder Dan Gilbert. By channeling over $1 billion dollars into the city, and inspiring others to follow suit, Gilbert is helping Detroit attract young, tech-savvy entrepreneurs. Throw in the lure of cheap land/rental rates, and it’s no wonder the city’s is host to a burgeoning tech scene.  

The only thing that’s been getting in these techies' way - is the city itself. Which is why many are hopeful that Detroit’s bankruptcy is just the beginning. 

More after the break...

Historic Toledo Museum of Art Goes Off Grid

The 101-year old historic building that houses the Toledo Museum of Art in Ohio has gone off grid, reports Candace Pearson of Architectural Record. Through a series of upgrades that began in the early ‘90s,  including covering 60% of the roof with solar panels, the Toledo Museum has gone from purchasing 700,000 kW of electricity a month to returning energy back to the grid - making it an exemplar of adaptability and sustainability in century-old public buildings. Find out how they did it at Architectural Record.

GBN House / Lucio Muniain et al

  • Architects: Lucio Muniain et al
  • Location: Almoloya de Juarez, Mexico
  • Collaborators: Mario Hernández, Jorge Arrollo, Luis Valdéz
  • Structures: Felipe Guillén
  • Facilities: CIESA Eduardo Robles
  • Text: Adela Rangel Fediuk
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photography: Alfonso de Béjar

© Alfonso de Béjar © Alfonso de Béjar © Alfonso de Béjar © Alfonso de Béjar

Happy Birthday Glenn Murcutt!

“Layering and changeability: this is the key, the combination that is worked into most of my buildings. Occupying one of these buildings is like sailing a yacht; you modify and manipulate its form and skin according to seasonal conditions and natural elements, and work with these to maximize the performance of the building.” - Glenn Murcutt, 1996

Today, on the 77th birthday of Australian architect Glenn Murcutt, we would like to take a moment to acknowledge the lasting impact Murcutt’s career has left on the profession of architecture. Since establishing his practice in 1979, Murcutt has steadily developed a series of small, yet exemplary projects that have become the touchstone of sustainable architecture. 

A selection of his work, after the break...

Rebollar Complex / SANTOSCREATIVOS + E85

  • Architects: SANTOSCREATIVOS, E85
  • Location: Guadalajara, Mexico
  • Project Architects: Victor H. Valverde Hernández, Diego García Córdoba, Saúl Figueroa Orendain
  • Project Area: 553.0 m2
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photography: Courtesy of SANTOSCREATIVOS + E85


Ajijic / Tatiana Bilbao S.C.

  • Architects: Tatiana Bilbao S.C.
  • Location: Lago de Chapala, Jalisco, México
  • Architect in Charge: Tatiana Bilbao, David Vaner, Catia Bilbao
  • Design Team: Tatiana Bilbao, Thorsten Englert, Damián Figueras, Adriana de Carvalho, Alex Cabrales, Marco Robles, Edgar Gonzalez
  • Structural engineering: MONCAD, Ing. Jorge Cadena
  • Area: 3870.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2010
  • Photographs: Iwan Baan

© Iwan Baan © Iwan Baan © Iwan Baan © Iwan Baan

Finalists Announced for FAR ROC Competition for Resilient Rockaways

© McGregor Coxall
© McGregor Coxall

The FAR ROC Competition, released shortly after Hurricane Sandy hit the eastern seaboard, called for a thoughtfully considered proposal for an 80-acre, 11-mile long peninsula that juts out into the Atlantic Ocean in the Rockaways (Queens, NY). The RFP expressed the need to explore a comprehensive solution to developing Averne East, a FEMA designated Hazard Area Zone that experienced extensive storm surge damage and continues to be a vulnerable site for future natural disasters.  While the competition focused on this particular site, the full intention is to develop strategies that could be appropriated to low-lying and vulnerable regions all over the world.

The first phase of the competition was completed earlier this month: four finalists and six honorable mentions were announced.  The four finalists - Ennead Architects of NYC, USA; Lateral Office of Toronto, Canada; Seeding Office of London, UK; and White Arkitekter of Stockholm, Sweden - will continue on to Phase Two with a $30,000 stipend, due in early October.

Join us after the break for more details on the finalists and honorable mentions.

The Gherkin Receives CTBUH’s Inaugural 10 Year Award

Norman Foster’s Swiss Re Headquarters, a.k.a. “The Gherkin,” has been selected as the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat’s (CTBUH) first 10 Year Award recipient. The uniquely-shaped skyscraper, as described by CTBUH, “cleared the way for a new generation of tall buildings in London and beyond. Ten years on, its tapering form and diagonal bracing structure afford numerous benefits: programmatic flexibility, naturally ventilated internal social spaces that provide user comfort while reducing energy demand, and ample, protected public space at the ground level.”

© Nigel Young © Nigel Young © Foster + Partners © Nigel Young

The Indicator: Starchitect, or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Portmanteau

Is the word “starchitect” really denigrating to architects? Is it really a problem for the profession? Really? It depends on how you look at it. 

And, yes, as it was pointed out to me, “This question itself is a rehash.” Well, the issue of labeling architects has been a rehash since the sixteenth century so we might as well trot it out one more time. 

It’s a rehash principally because the way we label architects has implications for the profession’s bottom line. It drives fees up for a few and down for everybody else. It makes some firms busy and others less so. Or does it even do anything but put contemporary architecture on the minds of the general public, the broader client base? 

Kanpur Riverfront Development Proposal / Studio Symbiosis

Designed as a sustainable master plan, the concept of water, waste, and energy management are integral to the concept of the Kanpur Riverfront Development project. Proposed by Studio Symbiosis, conservation of energy on the basis of transport management has been designed as an active design element in the master plan, which is a part of an overall scheme for rehabilitation of the Ganga river and the Ganga riverfront. More images and architects’ description after the break.

CTS Temple of Heaven Performance Zone Winning Proposal / Aedas

Aedas recently unveiled their master plan proposal for the CTS Temple of Heaven Performance Zone. Located in Beijing, their concept consists of a trio of urban, garden and lake environments while aiming to become the capital’s core cultural and commercial district and establish an international modern city life standard. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Casa 115 / Miquel Àngel Lacomba

© Mauricio Fuertes © Mauricio Fuertes © Mauricio Fuertes Courtesy of Miquel Àngel Lacomba

Beach House / Clare Cousins

© Shannon McGrath © Shannon McGrath © Shannon McGrath © Shannon McGrath

Villa Pecatu / Wahana Cipta Selaras

  • Architects: Wahana Cipta Selaras
  • Location: Pecatu, Bali, Indonesia
  • Architect in Charge: Rudi Kelana
  • Design Team: Matheus R.
  • Area: 1600.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2013
  • Photographs: Fernando Gomulya

© Fernando Gomulya © Fernando Gomulya © Fernando Gomulya © Fernando Gomulya