The Covington Farmers Market was designed and built by design/buildLAB, a third year architecture studio at the Virginia Tech, School of Architecture + Design focused on the research, development and implementation of innovative construction methods and architectural designs. At design/buildLAB students collaborate with local communities and experts to develop concepts and propose solutions to real world problems. The goal of this course is to teach students the skills necessary to confront the design and realization of architecture projects, with a consciousness for social and environmental issues. By removing the abstraction from the making of architecture, the course engages students’ initiative and encourages them to ask fundamental questions about the nature of practice and the role of the architect. By framing the opportunity for architecture students to make a difference in the life of a community, the hope is to show them the positive impact Architecture can make and inspire them to high professional ethics.
Architect: design/buildLAB (Virginia Tech School of Architecture + Design)
Location: Covington, Virginia, USA
Student Project Team: Anne Agan, Emily Angell, Zachary Britton, Chris Cromer, German Delgadillo, Chris Drudick, Cody Ellis, Jacob Geffert, Rachel Gresham, Shannon Hughes, Elizabeth Madden, Ryan McCloskey, Andrew McLaughlin, Brett Miller, Elizabeth Roop, Erin Sanchez, Sara Woolf
Professors: Marie Zawistowski, Architecte DPLG – Professor of Practice; Keith Zawistowski, Assoc. AIA, GC – Professor of Practice
Structural Engineer: Draper Aden and Associates – Dave Spriggs, PE
Project Year: 2011
The emergence of China on the global economic stage has been discussed at nauseum in myriad publications. But this emergence has had an impact on the world of architecture, providing a testing ground where architects can experiment with new ideas about sustainability and urban growth. These new ideas have been realized in recently completed structures, and more are just beginning construction or have been proposed for the future. More on these new buildings after the break.
Editor’s note: We are happy to introduce you to Jody Brown, the architect behind the popular blog Coffee with an Architect. Starting this week, we will have periodic “cups of coffee” with him to talk about the usual things that are common to us, the architects.
New Autocad Command Shortcuts after the break:
Located in a very rich part of Tripoli where street cafes are full, public gardens are lavish, and pedestrian pathways are bursting with everyday life, it is the perfect setting to tell a piece of Libya’s history. Therefore, the design strategy of Consolidated Consultants/Jafar Tukan Architects consists of embracing this rich surrounding for this history museum. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Architect: IMB Arquitectos
Location: Bilbao, Spain
Project Team: Gloria Iriate, Eduardo Mugica, Agustin de la Brena
Collaborates: Berndt Nischt, Iker Gandarias, Almudena Fernandez, Leyre de Lecea, Anartz Ormaza, Maite Eizagirre
Work Inspection: Iban Gonzalez, Ana Ruiz, Jose Luis Castellanos
Structure Consultant: NB 35 SA
Structure: Tauxme SA
Installations: Ingenieria NIPSA SA
Contractor: UTE Exbasa Amenabar
Photographs: Iñigo Bujedo Aguirre
The concept of territorial architecture is a topic that questions various strategic understandings of complex site systems defined by conceptual ideologies, environmental implications, and identification of emerging phenomenal underlying patterns.
Borrowing influences from Zaha Hadid’s dramatic early paintings, the constructed…
Rice University’s School of Architecture shared with us their current lecture series that started on September 1st and runs until November 17th. Each year, the Rice School of Architecture pulls big names in the architecture world to its lecture series.…
AC Martin, in association with Hillier Architecture, designed the new library at Fresno State University, home to the largest collection of volumes in California’s Central Valley. The new design provided innovative solutions to the existing library’s limited capacity for its rapidly expanding collections.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, Wal-Mart representatives and officials from the Office of Sustainability and Sustainable Atlanta announced today a competition to design an urban farm on a vacant lot across from City Hall. The Trinity Avenue Urban Farm Design Competition was launched to support the city’s effort in establishing an effective and inspirational model for urban agriculture and furthering the city’s pursuit of becoming a Top 10 sustainable city. In addition, as part of Wal-Mart’s initial funding, there is a $25,000 award to the winning submission.
The contest is open to students, educators and professionals across Georgia in fields related to urban agriculture and landscape architecture. Interested competitors must register online here by October 15 and submit proposals by November 1. Once the winning design is chosen, the preparation of the land and design installation will begin immediately, with the farm scheduled to open to the public by the spring of 2012. More information the competition after the break.
In this July 2011 TEDGlobal talk, physicist Geoffrey West argues that mathematical laws of networks and scalability govern the properties of cities. West demonstrates how wealth, crime rate, walking speed, and other aspects of a city can be predicted based on a city’s population–universally, and with startling accuracy.
West’s presentation is constructed through a comparison of cities’ statistical similarities with the mathematical laws of biology. Both are dominated by economies of scale, but while the pace of life decreases as biological organisms scale upwards, the pace of life in cities increases. For example, doubling the size of a city systematically increases income, wealth, number of patents, number of colleges, number of creative people, the number of police, crime rate, number of aids and flu cases, and waste by 15% per capita.
Although some might find West’s fervent empiricism tiresome, his model of urban scientific inquiry holds massive potential both as data and methodological model for theoretical inquiry autonomous from practice. As a scientist, West is free from our field’s predilection towards theory as model for practice–he can speak of his observations, but lets them remain as such. Any practical suggestion would limit the versatility of the information he and his team have produced, forever linking that new body of knowledge with a delimited body of interpretations. By way of example: West’s argument is reminiscent of Christopher Alexander’s classic essay, “A City is Not a Tree,” in which Alexander argues that cities are fundamentally social networks, and that those lattice like-networks are in opposition to the synthetic tree-like networks designed by Modernists from Tange to Hilbershimer. Alexander’s essay, organized categorically and grounded in anecdotal models, is too oppositional to have easy currency outside of its use with respect to the projects it references and criticizes. Given that, it is not surprising that Alexander’s later work in A Pattern Language is more often identified as a political statement against modern planning ideals than as the dictionary of design strategies it purported assumed itself to be. West’s argument, organized systematically rather than categorically and grounded in data rather than anecdote, operates in an epistemological universe resistant to the political and able to be understood and applied in a wide variety of contexts for numerous related and unrelated causes.
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Project Team: José Maria Cumbre + Nuno Sousa Caetano
Collaboration: Carolina Castro Freire
Foundations and Structures: PRPC Engenheiros – João Paulo Cardoso
Electrical and Telecommunications: Energia Técnica – João Mira
Security Installations: Energia Técnica – João Mira
HVAC systems: Energia Técnica – Luís Loureiro
Facilities Water and Sewerage: Energia Técnica – João Paulo Branco / Pereira Monteiro
Facilities Gas: Energia Técnica – João Paulo Branco / Pereira Monteiro
Measurements and Budget: Deolinda Cancela
Project Area: 308.80 sqm
Project Year: 2008-2010
Photographs: FG + SG
By Steve Sanderson
My inbox was hit recently by a couple of posts painting a bleak picture of the impact of BIM on the AECO industry. Thoughtful and objective criticism of BIM is helpful and necessary to counter vendor marketing overreach and fanboy zealotry. Unfortunately the criticisms I read are neither thoughtful nor objective. Instead they rely on sensationalist titles, sources outside of the building industry, and nonexistent relationships between cause-and-effect.
The first, A Cautionary Digital Tale of Virtual Design and Construction published in Engineering News-Record (ENR), describes the construction of an undisclosed building at an undisclosed university that resulted in an undisclosed contractor suing the undisclosed owner, who then sued an undisclosed architect, who brought an undisclosed MEP engineer into the mix. The lawsuit was settled out of court for an undisclosed amount by an insurance company. Tellingly, a VP at the insurance company is the only source for the article. The point seems to be that if you use BIM you could be sued.