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DNB Bank Headquarters / MVRDV

  • Architects: MVRDV
  • Location: Oslo, Norway
  • Area: 36500.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Jiri Havran, Jeroen Musch

© Jeroen Musch © Jiri Havran © Jiri Havran © Jiri Havran

Helsinki Central Library Competition Entry / Tanni Lam, Johnny Chiu, Adrian Lo

Through their concept of turning a traditional library inside out, Tanni Lam, Johnny Chiu, and Adrian Lo started with a simple architectural question: Why can’t we turn this inside out, have the users surround the books, thus huge openings, views, ventilation, visual dialogue, can be exchanged between inside and outside? All great libraries in the world have the books surrounding them, covering the space, but this design is a living library, a library that opens up new vistas for us, adding depth to our perception. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Adaptation: Architecture, Technology, and The City / INABA

Adaptation Publication via INABA
Adaptation Publication via INABA

Adaptation: Architecture, Technology and the City is a publication that is a result of the collaboration between INABA and Free that brings interviews and art works into a conversation about the advancement of digital technology and its place in the built environment. The publication is a fascinating study into the dialogue between technological advancements in transportation and communications and the tangible environment with which is inextricably linked.

UPDATE: Boltshauser Architekten Wins Competition To Design Basel Aquarium

Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects
Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects

As a follow up to our recent post on the recent win by Boltshauser Architekten for their Basel Aquarium design in Switzerland, we wanted to share with you the other entries by Zaha Hadid Architects, David Chipperfield Architects and Caruso St John Architects. Zaha Hadid’s ‘Blue Cave,’ while praised for its excellent quality, was criticised for its thin visitor aisles; the jury felt the “dynamic” styling of the building’s interior would have been in competition with the aquariums, and so the project came in third out of the 15 shortlisted entries. More information and images on the other entries, after the break.

Gold Coast Cultural Precinct Design Competition

The Gold Coast, Australia’s sixth largest city, recently announced their global design competition to develop it’s ‘cultural heart and soul’in the 17-hectare Evandale site. Designers are being invited to form multi-disciplinary teams ready for the two-stage competition, to be launched in March 2013 by Gold Coast City Council. The will be to create compelling design concepts that reflect the Gold Coast’s quintessential character while demonstrating worlds best practice in landscape, urban and architectural design. Registration begins in March. For more information, please visit here.

BOLLES+WILSON Receive 'Brick Award 2012'

Awarded by the Brick Development Association (BDA), BOLLES+WILSON recently received the ‘Brick Award 2012′ for their Raakspoort – City Hall and Bioscoop project in Haarlem, Netherlands. The jury headed by BDA-Chairman Bob Allies commended a wealth of innovation in brickwork details throughout the building’s intelligent design and its character, which is clearly responding to its contextual surroundings. Out of about 300 projects from across the globe, with 84 shortlisted, this project won the international category ‘Worldwide Brick’. More information after the break.

'Wolf D. Prix & Partner: 7+ Projects, Models, Plans, Sketches, Statements' Coop Himmelb(l)au Exhibition

On the occasion of Wolf D. Prix’ 70th birthday, the Architekturforum Aedes in Berlin is devoting an exhibition to Coop Himmelb(l)au entitled “Wolf D. Prix & Partner: 7+ Projects, Models, Plans, Sketches, Statements”. The event began on December 12 and ends January 24. The event highlights 70 years, 7 projects, the 7 lives of an architect as the magical number 7 has been integrated into the exhibition concept in a variety of ways. This show, which opened just one day before the 70th birthday of Coop Himmelb(l)au founder Wolf D. Prix, begins with a backward glance at the founding year of 1968 and the theoretical roots of this architectural partnership. For more information, please visit here.

2D or Not 2D / M.I.G. Architekt

  • Architects: M.I.G. Architekt
  • Location: Budva, Montenegro
  • Architect: Goran Ivo Marinovic
  • Structure Engineer: Veljko Kostic
  • Site Area: 741.0 sqm
  • Ground Area: 112.0 sqm
  • Area: 344.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Ana Kostic

© Ana Kostic © Ana Kostic © Ana Kostic © Ana Kostic

Photography: Mid-Century Modern Churches by Fabrice Fouillet

© Fabrice Fouillet
© Fabrice Fouillet

As Europe recovered from the death and destruction of World War II, countries got back to the business of rebuilding their communities and, of course, their churches. The need to make sense of the madness of the War was palpable - as was the need to express this modern-day spirituality in a form that broke from the past and embraced this new world.

The result was a bevy of European churches that - although often misunderstood by practitioners - represent some of our best-preserved examples of Modernist architecture. Photographer Fabrice Fouillet  made it his mission to photograph these beauties in a series he calls "Corpus Christi." You can see the images - as well as Fouillet's description of the work - after the break...

Fritz Hoger’s Kirche am Hohenzollernplatz in Berlin,1933. Image © Fabrice Fouillet. Nicholas Kasiz’ St.Remy,1957. Photo © Fabrice Fouillet Frères Sainsaulieu’s Notre Dame du Chene in Viroflay, France, completed in 1966. Image © Fabrice Fouillet © Fabrice Fouillet

4 Colors / Kochi Architect's Studio

© Daichi Ano Courtesy of Kazuyasu Kochi Courtesy of Kazuyasu Kochi Courtesy of Kazuyasu Kochi

Garden House / Joaquín Alvado Bañón

  • Architects: Joaquín Alvado Bañón
  • Location: Vistahermosa, Alicante, Spain
  • Structural Engineer: Miguel Angel Crespo
  • Collaboration: Jesús Olivares and Ángel Muñoz
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: David Frutos

© David Frutos © David Frutos © David Frutos © David Frutos

Knox Innovation Opportunity and Sustainability Centre / Woods Bagot

  • Interior Designers: Woods Bagot
  • Location: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  • Principal in Charge: Sarah Ball
  • Design Architect: Bruno Mendes
  • Project Architect: David Ley
  • Project Team: Matt Si, Richard Galloway, Claire Gardiner
  • Collaborators: Swinburne University and Schools Consortium
  • Builder: Harris HMC
  • Engineer/consultant: Meinhardt Group
  • Area: 1800.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Peter Bennetts

© Peter Bennetts © Peter Bennetts © Peter Bennetts © Peter Bennetts

DETAIL Concept: Housing for Seniors

The average age of the population in Western societies is rising steadily, sometimes faster than the age the individuals actually feel. Senior citizens, who are often full of vitality, have diverse conceptions of life. These are met by increasingly differentiated alternatives offering residential environments suitable for the later years of life. The designation of corresponding building projects as 50+ solutions can however give rise to a clash between the strategy of the housing industry and the target group’s perception of itself. Although the elderly generally wish to live in their own four walls for as long as possible, they tend to avoid considering the various available options. 

Alda Louis Huxtable Takes On The New York Public Library

The New York Public Library's (NYPL) main building on Fifth Avenue, is a Beaux-Arts masterpiece designed by architects Carrère & Hastings. Image via Flickr User CC wallyg.
The New York Public Library's (NYPL) main building on Fifth Avenue, is a Beaux-Arts masterpiece designed by architects Carrère & Hastings. Image via Flickr User CC wallyg.

The New York Public Library has a plan to save millions of dollars, improve efficiency, and reverse the cutbacks that have been plaguing it. How? By sending little-used resources off-site (after all, most people use the library for its online resources these days), the Library will consolidate three libraries into one Mid-Manhattan branch, renovating the building with a streamlined, efficient design - courtesy of Foster + Partners - to create "the largest combined research and circulating library in the country."

It sounds like a wonderful, modern solution. Ms. Alda Louis Huxtable would beg to differ.

The former New York Times architecture critic and current critic for the Wall Street Journal has come out swinging against the plan. First, she builds on the critique that others have made, that by moving volumes off-site (to New Jersey, or "Siberia, as she puts it) to make room for more modern amenities, the library will devalue its primary purpose (making resources readily accessible). To put it another way, as Scott Sherman did in his article for The Nation, it would turn the library into “a glorified internet café.” Then, Huxtable makes her own argument: that removing the current, intricate system of stacks would be an enormously complex, expensive, and hopelessly misguided structural challenge.

But, ultimately Ms. Huxtable’s argument comes down to the intrinsic architectural and cultural value of this Beaux Arts Masterpiece: “You don't "update" a masterpiece.” 

More on the Ms. Huxtable incendiary critique of The New York Public Library’s Central Plan, after the break...

House R / Bembé Dellinger Architekten

© Stefan Müller Naumann © Stefan Müller Naumann © Stefan Müller Naumann © Stefan Müller Naumann