Midtown Manhattan Ranks Second in 2011 Survey of U.S. Green Real Estate Markets

Photo by SkilliShots - http://www.flickr.com/photos/skillicorn/

Cushman & Wakefield, in collaboration with the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance’s BetterBricks Initiative, recently released its second annual Green Building Opportunity Index and three submarkets cracked the top ten.   Midtown, Midtown South, and Downtown placed second, fourth, and seventh, respectively in the Index.  One of the goals of this initiative is to assist urban planners and policymakers in examining data to understand what new policies and incentives may be useful in accelerating green building practices at the local level.

Tower at PNC Plaza / Gensler

© Gensler

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc., currently the sixth largest bank in the , is a leader in green design, currently possessing over 100 green buildings. PNC was an early adopter of sustainable design, opening its first green building in 2000. PNC and Gensler have recently announced plans to design and construct the world’s most environmentally friendly skyscraper at PNC’s headquarters in , Pennsylvania. More information and images after the break.

Vernacular Architecture and the 21st Century

Photo by Flickr user: seier + seier - http://www.flickr.com/photos/seier/

, the simplest form of addressing human needs, is seemingly forgotten in modern architecture. However, due to recent rises in energy costs, the trend has sensibly swung the other way. Architects are embracing regionalism and cultural building traditions, given that these structures have proven to be energy efficient and altogether sustainable. In this time of rapid technological advancement and urbanization, there is still much to be learned from the traditional knowledge of vernacular construction. These low-tech methods of creating housing which is perfectly adapted to its locale are brilliant, for the reason that these are the principles which are more often ignored by prevailing architects.

More on vernacular architecture after the break.

Aluminium Refinery Offices / Madland Estudio & Espacio Papel Arquitectos

© Elena Almagro

Architects: Madland Estudio & Espacio Papel Arquitectos
Location: , Spain
Project Area: 887.55 sqm
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Elena Almagro

Material Landscapes / Liane Hancock

© Melissa Kaseman

is an exhibition that recently opened at the Sheldon Art Gallery in , Missouri. The show is curated by Liane Hancock, Assistant Professor at Louisiana Tech University.  It features materiality in contemporary landscape architecture through projects by a group of national and international landscape architects.

Casa ‘na’ / Studio Architect Shuji Hisada

© Nacasa & Partners Inc. - Atsushi Nakamichi

Architect: Studio Architect Shuji Hlsada – Shuji Hlsada
Location: ,
General Contractor: Kusukame Comuten Co. Ltd. – Tadahiro Takada
Area: 145.75 sqm
Project Year: 2007-2010
Photographs: Naca’sa & Partners Inc. – Atsushi Nakamichi

Chop Stick / Visiondivision

© Visiondivision

Visiondivision is back with their latest funky design for a concession stand for 100 Acres: The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park.   Commissioned by the Indianapolis Museum of Art, the Swedish team has proposed an innovative stand that focuses specifically upon the idea of harvesting “something as gently as possible so that the source of what we harvest is displayed in a pure, pedagogic and respectful way—respectful to both the source itself and to everyone visiting the building,” explained the architects.  The main component of the design features ’s state tree, a yellow poplar measuring 100 ft.   The tree becomes the focus of the project as it runs horizontally, seemingly suspended in midair.

More about the project after the break.

Hall of Remembrance / Methodic Practice

© Robin Hayes Photography

Architects: Methodic Practice
Location: , England
Project Area: 200 sqm
Photographs: Robin Hayes Photography

University of Washington Medicine Research Complex / Perkins+Will

Perkins+Will rendering by Crystal CG/Gustafson Guthrie Nichol

Gustafson Guthrie Nichol (GGN) shared with us their role as landscape architects for the third phase of the University of Medicine’s research hub, designed by Perkins+Will, in ’s South Lake Union neighborhood, which broke ground earlier this month and is scheduled to be completed in the spring of 2013. More images and project description after the break.

2011 Orchids and Onions Competition

Courtesy of Architectural Foundation

The (SDAF) wants to know what you think makes San Diego’s architecture and design blossom – or stink, and is again soliciting public nominations through August 31 for projects to be considered for this year’s Orchids & Onions Awards. All San Diegans are encouraged to take a few moments to have their say about what they view as the good, the bad and the ugly in categories including Architecture, Historic Preservation, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Sustainable Design, and Miscellaneous; which covers just about everything in-between. By uploading a few photos on the SDAF’s Orchids and Onions website, along with your rationalization, you can be part of cultivating a more thoughtfully designed San Diego. More competition description after the break.

Shepherd of the Valley Chapel / 3six0 Architecture

© John Homer Photography

Architect: 3six0 Architects
Location: ,
Project Team: Kyna Leski – Principal, Christopher Bardt AIA – Principal, Jack Ryan RA – Senior Associate & Project Architect, Eleanor Lee, Aaron Brode, Nick Croft, Shane Zhao, Tim Decoster, Richard Leheny, Kelly Ennis, Michael Williams, Yu Morishita, Jacob Wangh
General Contractor: Atlantic Managment Group
Structural Engineer: Wilbur Yoder
Lighting Consultant: Hogan Macaulay, Architecture + Light
Project Area: 1,200 square feet
Project year: 2008
Photographs: John Horner Photography

Historical Park of Medieval Bosnia / FILTER Architecture

Courtesy of

FILTER Architecture’s design for the Historical Park of Medieval Bosnia was prompted by the idea of an exhibition space forming an integral point of the large Kamberović Park alongside the River Bosna, in the center of the town of . The concept was based on a deterministic approach to history – as a series of causes and consequences, while avoiding falling into a trap of a pathos-ridden and artificial representation of a part of our national history. More images and a brief description after the break.

Private House in Marupe / Open AD

Maris Lagzdins

Architects: Open AD / Zane Tetere
Location: Marupe,
Project Year: 2009
Project Area: 320 sqm
Photographs: Maris Lagzdins

AD Classics: Grande Arche / Johann Otto von Spreckelsen

Photo by Simon Huggins - http://www.flickr.com/photos/shufgy/

The Grande Arche is a celebrated monument which marks the bicentennial of the French Revolution and is a distinctive piece reminiscent of 20th century architecture. The competition for a “modernized Arche de Triomphe” was won by , whose concept was more or less a hollowed, symmetrical cube. Situated just outside of in the business district of la Défense, the Grande Arche completes the Historical Axis – extending from the Louvre along the Champs-Elysees to the Arche de Triomphe – and guides to the future.

More on the Grande Arche after the break.

Universiade Sports Center and Bao’an Stadium / gmp architekten

© Christian Gahl

To mark the occasion of the Universiade, which will take place from 12th to 23rd August 2011, the Universiade center and Bao’an stadium will be opened tomorrow in Shenzhen, southern China. The international competitions to come up with a design for the buildings were won in 2006 and 2007 by the designs of Architects von Gerkan Marg and Partners (gmp). The Universiade sports center consists of a stadium, a multifunctional hall and a swimming pool. The stadium in the Bao’an district is designed as an athletics stadium. However, during the 2011 Universiade, it is being used for football matches.

Architect: Architects von Gerkan Marg and Partners (gmp)
Location: Shenzhen, China
Photographs: Christian Gahl, Stephan Schütz, gmp

Fran and Ray Stark Sculpture Garden, J. Paul Getty Center / OLIN

© Marion Brenner

The Fran and Ray Stark Sculpture Garden is one of a series of discrete outdoor sculpture locations throughout the J. Paul Getty Center, featuring an elegant and deferential landscape inspired by Southern California’s rugged beauty. The garden—actually a green roof over part of the museum—showcases works by iconic artists from Noguchi to Henry Moore, offering visitors a striking preview of the museum’s rich collections.

Landscape Architect: OLIN
Architect: Richard Meier & Partners Architects
Location: , California, United States
Project Team: Dennis McGlade, FASLA, E. Allan Spulecki
Fluidity Design Consultants: Englekirk Partners
Structural Engineers: Martin Newson & Associates
Project Area: 23,636 sqf
Year: 2006
Photographs: OLIN, Marion Brenner

Summerhill Residence / Edmonds + Lee Architects

© Bruce Damonte Photography

Architect: Edmonds + Lee Architects
Location: , California, USA
Project Team: Robert Edmonds, Vivian Lee
Project Area: 4,095 sqf
Project Year: 2008
Structural Engineer: Double-D Engineering
Civil Engineer: Dimensions 4 Engineering
Photographs: Bruce Damonte Photography

Oriole Park at Camden Yards: A Watershed Moment for Sports Stadiums

© Shoshanah / Wikimedia Commons

The most influential decision in in the last twenty-five years was not made by a general manager, coach, or athlete. In fact, it wasn’t even made on a field, pitch, court, or rink. Instead, this decision originated in the office and on the drafting tables of the architecture firm HOK. The architects and engineers decided, going against three decades of stadium designs, some of which were their very own, to not create another generic multi-sport indoor arena for the next Oriole park. Rather, they designed a stadium that was considerate of its context, integrated beautifully within the city, and invited the citizens of to enjoy watching their Orioles play. More on stadium design and Oriole Park after the break.