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Calatrava Criticized for Valencia Complex

© Flickr user FromtheNorth
© Flickr user FromtheNorth

Praised for his masterful blends of architecture and engineering, yet criticized for rarely sticking to a budget, Valencia-native Santiago Calatrava is no stranger to controversy. His latest project making headlines is the largest landmark in Valencia and the second most-visited cultural complex in Spain: the City of Arts and Sciences. 

More on the controversy after the break.

Grimshaw Reveals Aviation Vision for London

Grimshaw Architects are the latest practice to add their voice to the debate surrounding the capacity problem of London’s airports. Their innovative proposal, entitled ‘London: Hub City’, bucks the trend of recent ‘superhub’ proposals, which are frequently suggested as a solution to the problem. 

Instead of creating a large ‘airport hub’ on a single site separated from the city, Grimshaw’s design prioritizes construction of new express lines by creating a ‘City Hub’ that allows passengers to transfer between London’s existing airports via the city center. The benefit being that expansion could be spread amongst its four existing airports incrementally, as needed, instead of being concentrated on the construction of one ‘super-hub’.

More on Grimshaw's aviation proposal for London after the break.

Why The Recession Was Long Over-Due

Courtesy of Flickr User CC Donna Grayson
Courtesy of Flickr User CC Donna Grayson

Yesterday, we featured an article by Yale faculty member and AutoDesk Vice President, Phil Bernstein, about the increasing opportunities for architecture students graduating in 2013. Today, Scott Simpson, a senior fellow of the Design Futures Council and co-author of the books How Firms Succeed and The Next Architect, offers his perspective on our recovering economy, and what it will mean for architects in the future. 

Simpson starts off by putting the Crisis in perspective: "From 2008 to 2011, the profession took a tremendous hit, both financially and in terms of lost intellectual capital. The old way of doing business is not coming back, nor would we wish for it. [...] Rather than complaining about tough times, let’s start with the realization that many of these changes are long overdue." 

After reviewing what the Recession has meant and what we can learn from it, Simpson makes one final, and empowering, claim: "For those willing to take up the challenge, there has never been a more exciting time to be an architect."

Read all of Simpson's article, which originally appeared on DesignIntelligence, after the break...

Todd Saunders: Architecture in Northern Landscapes

Swiss architecture and design publisher Birkhäuser has released a monograph of Todd Saunders’ work. Based in Bergen, Norway, award-winning Canadian architect Todd Saunders has built work in Norway, Finland and Canada. Todd Saunders: Architecture in Northern Landscapes covers his work over the last decade. The simple yet powerful aesthetic of the book mirrors the elegance of Saunders’ own architectural style and compliments the potency of the natural settings in which his work is often situated.

Galaxay Mall / tvsdesign

  • Architects: tvsdesign
  • Location: Tianjin, China
  • Area: 213324.0 sqm
  • Photographs: Courtesy of tvsdesign

Courtesy of tvsdesign Courtesy of tvsdesign Courtesy of tvsdesign Courtesy of tvsdesign

Holland Park School / Aedas

  • Architects: Aedas
  • Location: London, UK
  • Structural Engineer: Buro Happold
  • M&E Consultant: Buro Happold
  • Quantity Surveyor: Gardiner And Theobald
  • Landscape: The Landscape Partnership
  • Client: The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
  • Area: 20,000 sqm
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Courtesy of Aedas

Courtesy of Aedas Courtesy of Aedas Courtesy of Aedas Courtesy of Aedas

Alberto Campo Baeza Awarded Heinrich Tessenow Gold Medal 2012

Only a few weeks after being recognized for his excellence by the Universidad Politécnica of Madrid, the distinguished Spanish architect Alberto Campo Baeza has just been awarded the Heinrich Tessenow Gold Medal for 2012 by the Alfred Toepfer Foundation in Hamburg. The award, given since 1962, is a recognition of work that, like that of German architect Heinrich Tessenow (1876-1950), is "uncompromising, sober and essential." 

Architectural Design: Human Experience and Place - Sustaining Identity

Human Experience and Place: Sustaining Identity is the latest title in the successful and prestigious Architectural Design (AD) series. Officially launched at the Sustaining Identity Symposium in London’s Victoria & Albert Museum at the end of November, this issue features both well-known and emerging practices worldwide.

By drawing on examples from across the world, this issue of AD demonstrates that, in a time of commercial globalisation, it is possible for architects, designers and engineers to create outstanding buildings that retain a sense of local identity, both in terms of cultural heritage and the conservation of the environment.

Paracas House / RRMR Arquitectos

© Javier Larrea
© Javier Larrea
  • Architects: RRMR Arquitectos
  • Location: Paracas, Ica, Peru
  • Architects In Charge: Roberto Riofrio Navarro, Micaela Rodrigo Graña
  • Design Team: Edith Zamalloa, Anny Gutierrez, Miguel Seminario, Beatriz Pero, Helvis Marcello Hidalgo, Claudia Porras
  • Area: 680 sqm
  • Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Javier Larrea, Jorge Dieguez

© Javier Larrea © Javier Larrea © Javier Larrea © Javier Larrea

Video: Rob Montgomery & Pernilla Ohrstedt, The Hot Seat

All Saints’ Academy / Nicholas Hare Architects

  • Architects: Nicholas Hare Architects
  • Location: Blaisdon Way, Cheltenham, UK
  • Structural Engineer: Skanska Technology
  • Services Engineer: White Young Green
  • Client: Gloucestershire County Council
  • Project Year: 2011
  • Photographs: Hufton & Crow, Courtesy of Nicholas Hare Architects

© Hufton & Crow © Hufton & Crow © Hufton & Crow © Hufton & Crow

Kettle Hole House / Robert Young

  • Architects: Robert Young
  • Location: East Hampton, New York, USA
  • Architect In Charge: Robert Young
  • Design Team: Mara Indra, Marlene Toerper, Shea Murdock
  • Project Architect: Kiyomi Troemner
  • Project Year: 2008
  • Photographs: Frank Oudeman

© Frank Oudeman © Frank Oudeman © Frank Oudeman © Frank Oudeman

Martin Barry: Collaborative Ideas for More Livable Cities Lecture

Martin Barry, founder and director of reSITE in Prague and associate at W Architecture and Landscape Architecture in New York, will give an evening lecture at 6:30pm EST on February 7th. Taking place at the NYU Silver Center, his lecture will focus on how organization is advocating for more transparent, contemporary and sustainable urban planning in Czech cities. Martin will discuss the outcomes of reSITE 2012 and describe their plans for reSITE Festival and Conference to take place in June 2013. The event is presented by NYU Department of Art History & Urban Design and Architecture Studies with Czech House NYU. For more information, please visit here.  

Films & Architecture: "Inception"

This time we want to share a very contemporary film. An amazing story stunningly described by Christopher Nolan, in which dreams within dreams can be manipulated by “architects” who can construct an imaginary reality.

Imagine: being able, as architects, to create whole environments, just using our minds as the resource. Let us know your ideas in the comments below, and, while you’re at it, please let us know of some new films we can add to the list!

Vigdis Languages Center Proposal / OOIIO Architecture

Designed for the “Vigdis Foundation”, the Languages Center aims to be a rational building, where modulation is a key aspect. Designed by OOIIO Architecture, there is no architectural excess that might increase the budget, but quite singular and special at the same time, comfortable for users and interesting enough to get the pedestrians attention. Built to host exhibitions, a cinema-theater, café, library, and more, the construction of the building is efficient, quick and with a rational materials use. More images and architects’ description after the break.More images and architects’ description after the break.

Valenciennes Technopole for Sustainable Mobility Competition Entry / Mikou Design Studio

The Transalley Technopole is a metropolitan scientific and technological project of an international dimension, dedicated to transportation and mobility, located on a strategic site of the Valenciennes urban area. The competition proposal by Mikou Design Studio aims to be a real ecosystem of innovation, and it will host the Institut des Transports Durables (Sustainable Transport Institute), the Institut International de Management, and the head office of IRT Railenium, which will be a major research and development center dedicated to railway infrastructure. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Innovative, Bioclimatic, European School Complex Second Prize Winning Proposal / Various Architects

Designed by architects Costandis Kizis, Platon Issaias, Theodosis Issaias, and Alexandra Vougia, the second prize winning proposal for the Innovative Bioclimatic European School Complex in Crete develops around two fundamental elements of space: light and soil. In response to the intense landscape of the area of Voutes, the architectural gesture, derived from the cliffs and valleys of the region, takes advantage of the microclimatic conditions while at the same time underlining the presence of an educational institution, not by standing out, but by letting the natural landscape play the leading role. More images and architects’ description after the break.