Update: The Lens wins the St. Petersburg Pier Competition

The Lens ©

The Lens, designed by Michael Maltzan Architecture, has been selected as winner of the international competition to redesign the St. Petersburg Pier in . After over a month of debate, a jury of three architects and two elected officials selected the proposal, believing it to be the most practical and cost-effective design. The jury’s decision was consistent with the public’s opinion, as 68% of the public comments supported The Lens, 42% liked The Wave, while only 17% backed the Eye. Next, the St. Petersburg City Council will vote on February 2nd to decide whether or not they will approve the design. If the concept is accepted, the next year will be dedicated to involve the public in the creation of the final design.

Follow this link to watch the pier jury ranking. Find more information on the final proposal here.

Reference: WTSP 10 News, City of St. Petersburg

Brookvale Park / Tristan & Juliana

© Rupert Singleton

Architects: Juliana & Tristan
Location: ,
Project Area: 150 sqm
Project Year: 2009
Photographs: Rupert Singleton, ImageGarden

Architectural Patents: On what Grounds?

Courtesy of ifoapplestore.com

We have all heard of patenting building systems, building technologies, details and of course, products.  But what about patenting architecture?  Jack Martin brought this to our attention in light of  successfully getting an architectural patent for the design of a store in the Upper West Side in New York City, asking “On what grounds can you patent architecture?”  The inventors listed in the patent are architects Karl Backus, Peter Bohlin and George Bradley of Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, and Robert Bridger, Benjamin L. Fay, Steve Jobs and Bruce Johnson for a design that Architect’s Newspaper describes as “meticulous and seamless as its clients”.

So, what is the extent of patenting architecture?  Structural systems, materials, details, conceptual strategies, the look of it?  We interpret architecture as a language in itself, but it is difficult to conceive of copyright infringement when it comes to architectural design because it is difficult to pin-point exactly what makes all of the parts of a building a copyrighted entity. What if Le Corbusier patented his designs?  Mies van der RoheFrank Lloyd Wright?  Their work and strategies have been copied and implemented all over the world to varying degrees.  So, where is the line between protecting an original idea and creating a barrier against progress? Or does this commercialization of architecture fuel competition to design better or design around strategies already patented? More after the break.

Spinpark / Cerejeira Fontes Arquitectos

Courtesy of

Architects: Cerejeira Fontes Arquitectos
Location: Caldas das Taipas, Guimarães,
Client: Avepark, Parque de Ciências e Tecnologia
Project Area: 4.484 sqm
Project Year: 2008
Photographs: Courtesy of Cerejeira Fontes Arquitectos

Interview with Tom Kundig by Lawrence W. Cheek of SeattleMet

© Tim Bies/Olson Kundig Architects

In this interview published by Seattle Met,  Lawrence W. Cheek speaks with Tom Kundig, principal at Olson Kundig Architects.  Kundig has defined his career for designing homes that are flexible and considerate in their materials, functions, response to site and the way that the human body interacts with the space and mechanics of the environment.  This interview is excellent at revealing Kundig’s inspiration and priorities when it comes to designing homes and he mentions some great examples and strategies that he has taken over the years.

Here is just a list of the variety, but consistency, representative of Kundig’s work:

On January 25th at 6pm, Tom Kundig will be speaking with Mark Rozzo at the New York Public Library about Tom Kundig: Houses 2.  More information on that event coming soon.

Follow us after the break for the full interview, courtesy of SeattleMET, ”Q&A with Architect Tom Kundig” by Lawrence W. Cheek.

Santa Monica Parking Garage / Brooks & Scarpa

© John Edward Linden

Architects: Brooks + Scarpa
Location: Eight locations along 3rd Street Promenade, Santa Monica
Client/Owner: Tina Rodriguez, Project Manager – tina.rodriguez@smgov.net
Project Team: Lawrence Scarpa, FAIA – Principal-in-Charge, Angela Brooks, AIA, Omar Barcena, Mark Buckland, Brad Buter, Silke Clemens, Stephanie Ericson, AIA, Jordon Gearhart, Chris Ghatak, Luis Gomez, Emily Hodgdon, Ching Luk, Matt Majack, Gwynne Pugh, Sri Sumantri 
Architect of Record: Taylor Fierce Orne Architects
Project Area: 2,071,139 sqf
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: John Edward Linden

Campus Park Skara / AART Architects + Schonherr Landscape

© / Schonherr Landscape

AART Architects and Schonherr Landscape recently won the competition for the new Campus Park in Sweden, including a 10,000m2 school and a 49 acre green park. Municipality appointed the two teams to carry on the city’s proud school tradition with their design located in the heart of the city. The winning proposal strives to excite the students’ curiosity and desire to learn by using the architecture as an innovative learning platform, stimulating their senses and social interaction. More architects’ description after the break.

Orchard Library / HMC Architects

© David Wakely

Architects: HMC Architects
Location: California,
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: David Wakely

Update: AIA Stalled Projects Database

Stalled Projects Database

Last summer, we were big advocators for the AIA’s innovative idea to establish a database of stalled projects.  As we shared earlier, such a network would allow potential investors to finance halted projects deemed “credit-worthy”; thus, projects that may not acquire the necessary financial backing due to the lack of available credit may be able to be built thanks to public/anonymous investors.  This initiative, which has been in effect for a mere 2 and a half months, could be a great opportunity for entreprenauial architects as the database provides a perfect platform for information and interaction.  So far, the AIA reported that the database contains 36 projects worth approximately $1.2 billion with 50 investors – and those numbers are only expected to increase as efforts of the initiative are more publicly known. “This effort by the AIA to match projects with investors has no precedent we know of, and so we have to be pleased with the development of the database so far,” said AIA President Jeff Potter, FAIA. “We won’t be satisfied, however, until we see deals being consummated at a rapid pace as a result of our efforts.”

More about the database after the break.

Wicker Membranes / Andrea von Chrismar


The wicker weaving technique is associated with the traditional manufacturing of small utilitarian objects. This technique installed in Chile since colonial times, stands out for its potential to build complex and resistant shapes given by the flexibility of the fiber and rigidity provided by the weaving. Based on these properties, this project by Andrea von Chrismar explores the manufacturing of the weave, this time in relation to the field of architecture. This research explores the potential of a natural raw material and an ancient technique of patrimonial nature, regarding new usage options. More images and architects’ description after the break.

UN / Yo Yamagata Architects

© Forward stroke Inc

Location: ,
Project Area: 144.63 sqm
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Forward stroke Inc

Video: Le Corbusier’s Chapel Notre-Dame du Haut

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A well known architectural classic by , the Notre Dame du Ronchamp, or more commonly referred to as , is featured very elegantly in this video by italian architect Franco Di Capua. The curved roof that peels up towards the heavens, the curving walls, and the the sporadic window placement on the walls are just a few of the architectural elements that make this project such a marvel.

The Cube / Make Architects

Courtesy of

Architect: Make Architects
Location: Birmingham,
Client: Birmingham Development Company
Collaborators: BuroHappold, Faber Mansell Fire, Faithful+Gould, GMJ, Hoare Lea
Project Area: 42,000 sqm
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Zander Olsen, Make Architects, Craig Holmes/Images of Birmingham, Crew Photography

Cilandak Bisnis Square (CIBIS) Masterplanning Project / Broadway Malyan

Courtesy of

Global architecture, urbanism and design practice Broadway Malyan has pushed into with their winning proposal in the masterplan for the high-profile Cilandak Bisnis Square (CIBIS) project in Jakarta, on behalf of client Bhumyamka Sekawan. CIBIS is the practice’s first project in , which has one of the world’s fastest growing construction markets and is predicted to represent some four per cent of global construction spending from 2010 to 2020. More images and project description after the break.

Interview: Renzo Piano on Innovation / AR Innovators

In his interview with Renzo PianoRob Gregory of Architectural Review discusses architecture, responsibility and innovation within the field.  Piano talks about architecture is being a highly considered inquiry into the process of making because “architecture is more lasting and profound” and if it is done wrong, with the wrong intentions and assumptions, then “it is wrong for a long time”.  In regards to his work, speaks about the “good and bad stories” that surround buildings.  Mentioning The Shard in , designed in partnership with Hunter Douglas and Pompidou Centre, designed in collaboration with Richard Rogers, Piano reflects on the role of architecture in a city as a public building and cultural magnet.

More after the break.

Guidelines on How to Build a Healthy School

The United States Green Building Council‘s (Center for Green Schools, started by the Georgia Chapter, is behind the transformation of the educational system in this country through the introduction of high performance schools and facilities. It all starts with providing an environment for learning focusing on health, education and the responsible use of funds, which are “the three major concerns that the school system struggles with”, says Laura Turdel Seydel – Chair of the Captain Planet Foundation.  The fundamentals are simple and are the typical goals of the Board of Education.  But this initiative, which is a coalition between some of the top educational and environmental associations in the country, does this by focusing on where students are learning and that means updating the technology of our schools.

Join us after the break for more.

Bridgestone Pavilion / Architectkidd

Courtesy of Architectkidd

Architect: Architectkidd
Location: Bangkok,
Design Team: Luke Yeung, PailinPaijitsattaya, PhuttipanAswakool
Exhibition Design: DesignLAB
Client Representative: Dentsu Thailand
Structural Design: MontreeSayabovorn
Contractor: Pico Thailand
Project Area: 500 sqm
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: PhuttipanAswakool, Luke Yeung

Flint House / Nick Willson Architects

© Gareth Gardner

Architect: Nick Willson Architects
Location: London,
Project Area: 170sqm.
Photographs: Gareth Gardner