Motopia: A New Age of Modular Construction / USC School of Architecture

Motopia: A New Age of Modular Construction, an event put on by USC’s School of Architecture, will bring together today’s most creative designers of mobile architecture and examine solutions to current economic, social and environmental concerns in the housing industry; identify emerging technologies and trends; and synthesize recent advancements in design, manufacturing, materials and systems. The event takes place on November 2nd, 2011 from 5-8pm. More information on the event after the break.

‘The Core Project’ Ideas Competition

Courtesy of The Redwood Empire Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA)

The City of , together with The Redwood Empire Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and a group of local business sponsors, is hosting The Core Project, an international design competition to generate innovative ideas for renewing the city center. A small town with a population of approximately 8,000 people, Sebastopol is the hub of western Sonoma County. It provides commercial and community access for roughly 50,000 people in outlying rural and residential areas but it retains a desirable small town feel. More information on the competition after the break.

Temple Sinai / Mark Horton / Architecture with Michael Harris Architecture

© Ethan Kaplan Photography / with Michael Harris Architecture

Architect: Mark Horton / Architecture with Michael Harris Architecture
Location: Oakland, California,
Photographs: Ethan Kaplan Photography

Eames Designs Exhibition at A+D Museum

Courtesy of A+D

For the first time, the words of Charles and Ray Eames will be the lens of an exhibit at the A+D Museum in from October 1st to January 16th, enveloping the visitor in a 21st century typographic ‘surround’. Their philosophy of design and life will be explored through Eames’ quotes, shown graphically (as well as live on film), and complemented by the display of unexpected everyday objects, ranging from food to a keg of nails, to an inter-active digital experience. Their appreciation of humble objects is a special gift to the world – during their lifetimes and continuing today. Generations of designers and the public have been affected by their appreciation of the joys of daily life. More information on the event after the break.

The Transformation of the SoMa District

Photo by John Martinez Pavliga - http://www.flickr.com/people/virtualsugar/

In 2009, the Uptown Tenderloin Historic District was created in an attempt to preserve the rich history of the buildings, neighborhoods and communities that lay north of ’s Market Street. It has not only kept developers from modifying or even eradicating key buildings that have shaped the city of , but has also helped to prevent the process of gentrification, enabling middle and lower-class inhabitants to continue living in the city at reasonable rates. Although building projects north of Market Street are now heavily restricted, not all of is off limits.

2011 Architecture and the City Festival: San Francisco

Courtesy of AIA

The 2011 Architecture and the City Festival, being held from September 1st to September 30th, is a month long celebration featuring over 40 behind the scenes tours, workshops, exhibitions, lectures, dining adventures, films and more that explore the best of San Francisco architecture and design.

Hosted by AIA San Francisco, the 2011 festival theme is ‘Architecture of Consequence.’ By selecting this theme, the festival hopes to demonstrate how progressive design and creative problem solving can address society’s current challenges and lead to a more sustainable future. More information on the event after the break.

Computer History Museum / Mark Horton / Architecture


© Mark Richards & Mark Horton / Architecture

The birthplace of Pong. The home of Facebook. The epicenter of the Cloud.

Mark Horton / Architecture (MH/A)’s renovation of an existing former Silicon Graphics office building in , California, into the new home of the Computer History Museum is genius loci made physical.

Architect: Mark Horton / Architecture
Project Team: Mark Horton, Principal; Daniel Mason, Project Architect
Location: Mountain View, California,
Project Year: 2011
Project Area: 25,000 sqf Primary Exhibition Space; 6,000 sqf Multi-use lobby / café / reception / gift shop
Photographs: Mark Richards, Ethan Kaplan Photography, Daniel Mason, Mark Horton / Architecture

Pocket Gems / Min | Day

© Bruce Damonte

This office space by Min | Day had a conservative budget, but creative client. The project, titled Pocket Gems, is an equally creative solution for the mobile gaming company’s interior wants, needs, and restraints. More after the break.

Architect: Min | Day
Location: , , United States
Project Team: E. B. Min, AIA, Jeffrey L. Day, AIA, Karina Gilbert, Ashley Byars, Nicholas Pajerski, Win Mixter
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Bruce Damonte

House of Air / Mark Horton – Architecture

© Ethan Kaplan Photography and Mark Horton / Architecture

Architect: Mark Horton / Architecture
Location: San Francisco, ,
Project Team: Mark Horton, Principal; David Gill, Project Architect; Matt Shanks, Designer
Project Year: 2010
Project Year: 21,440 sqf
Photographer: Ethan Kaplan Photography, Jeremy Wong, Mark Horton / Architecture

Ahmanson Founders Room / Belzberg Architects

© Fotoworks

Architect: Belzberg Architects
Location: 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, 90012,
Project Team: Hagy Belzberg, Principal; David Cheung, Project Manager; Barry Gartin, Bill Bowen, Brock DeSmit, Carina Bien-WIllner, Dan Rentsch, Eric Stimmel, Justin Brechtel, Warren Bradley Lang
Project Area: 2,500 sqf
Project Year: 2006
Photographs: Fotoworks

331 Foothill Road Office Building / Ehrlich Architects

© RMA Architectural Photographers

Architect: Ehrlich Architects
Location: ,
Project Year: 2009
Client: City of Beverly Hills
Contractor: Bayley Construction
Structural Engineer: John A. Martin & Associates Inc.
MEP Engineer: IBE Consulting Engineer
Civil Engineer: KPFF
Landscape Design: LRM Inc.
Acoustic Consultant: Schaffer Acoustics Inc.
Lighting Consultant: HLB Lighting Design
Cost Estimation: C.P. O’Halloran Associates
Specifications: CSI Specifications
Photography: RMA Architectural Photographers

   

California Aims for Net-Zero Energy for Housing by 2020

Sustainable Town House, Courtesy of C.F. Møller Architects

Sustainable housing comes in all shapes and sizes, and by 2020 hopes that all of its new housing projects will benefit from net-zero energy consumption.  But what exactly makes a home sustainable? Sustainability practices include materials, passive heating and cooling systems, energy harvesting, recycling, construction techniques and many other systems and technologies that are being developed everyday.

With so much continual innovation, California’s goal of making all new housing so energy efficient that it consumes no energy at all is foreseeable.  While many agree that this, in fact, is the most responsible and intelligent approach to our increased energy consumption, developers and builders are divided over the potential financial hurdles that crop up from such a goal.

Follow us after the break for more information and images of sustainable housing projects.

AD Classics: Steel Pre-Fab Houses / Donald Wexler

© Juergen Nogai

For Donald Wexler modern architecture is simply the right way to design. One of the true fundamental Modernist, Donald Wexler began his career working in the office of . It was here that he became a true pragmatist, balking at any ideological rational for modernism and instead argue that his pursuit of modern design derives from its responsiveness to dynamic environmental, technological, and material conditions. Adaptability and flexibility, prominent aspects of Wexler’s personality, are values inherent in his conception of architectural space, systems, and materials.

   

Neutra House Temporarily Spared by Community Action

The Kronish House in Beverly Hills, . From Mark Angeles via Unlimited Style

A place belongs forever to whoever claims it hardest, remembers it most obsessively, wrenches it from itself, shapes it, renders it, loves it so radically that he remakes it in his own image.

Joan Didion

Community pressure has swayed the owners of Richard Neutra‘s Kronish House to postpone plans for demolition, and has also prompted the city of Beverly Hills to draft legislation to preserve its architectural history. The house been spared until at least October 10 in order to give community activists time to devise a plan for its restoration. In a related, ground-breaking action the Beverly Hills City Council has asked the city’s Planning Commission to enact a first-ever historic-preservation ordinance.

The Conga Room / Belzberg Architects

© Belzberg Architects

The Conga Room, in its new location at LA LIVE in downtown Los Angeles across from the Staples Center, is the city’s premier Latin nightclub. The space will feature today’s hottest Latin performers in its 14,000 square foot live venue space, which includes a restaurant, three distinct bars, patio seating, and a VIP lounge and private room. In addition, the club will host LA TV and world-renowned DJs adjacent to the stage and above the crowd, adding even more excitement to the ambiance. Perhaps the club design’s greatest intent is to be true to the energy of the Latin community, to pay homage to its roots and deep history while infusing it with Los Angeles’ fervent modern lifestyle.

Architect: Belzberg Architects
Location: Los Angeles, ,
Project Team: Hagy Belzberg, Principal; Cory Taylor, Project Manager; Andrew Atwood, Ceiling Project Manager; Chris Arntzen, Kelly Bair, Bill Bowen, Carina Bien-Willner, David Cheung, Brock Desmit, Barry Gartin, Aaron Leppanen, Dan Rentsch, Lauren Zuzack
Project Area: 14,000 sqf
Project Year: 2008
Photographs: Belzberg Architects, Fotoworks-Benny Chan

(RE) Configured-Ecologies: Recycled Shipping Container Structures to Revive Long Beach

Courtesy of WE-designs and XP& Architecture

The city of , recently asked firms WE-designs and XP& Architecture to design a landmark project to revitalize its downtown area using a low budget. The initial ideas are represented here as a series of re-configured old shipping containers, truncated and placed upright.  The futuristic cluster of low rise buildings, called (RE) Configured-Ecologies, may eventually become multi-use space with an open playground feel.  It will comprise of an education center, a café, retail space and 13 work/live loft spaces as well as an open roof terrace.  Through proposing three types of innovatively reconstructed modular shipping containers, the overall construct leads to open courtyards, interlocking units, and playfully generated programs that introduce a new innovative topological creation that regenerates and reconnects the community.

More images after the break!

Sonoma Barn / Michael Hennessey Architecture

© Michael Hennessey Architecture

The owners of a private vineyard sought to renovate an existing pre-engineered metal barn into a music room, mezzanine, exercise room, and restrooms. The building is located within the hills above the Sonoma Valley where temperatures during the summer can become excessive, demanding a clear passive cooling strategy to create comfortable habitable spaces.

Architect: Michael Hennessey Architecture
Location: Northern ,
General Contractor: Matarozzi/Pelsinger Builders
Structural Engineer: Yu Strandberg Engineering
Project Year: 2011
Project Area: 1,991 sqf
Photographs: Michael Hennessey Architecture

More about Foster + Partner’s new Apple Campus in Cupertino

© , ARUP, Kier + Wright, Apple

The city of Cupertino has released more details about the new Apple Campus, revealed back in June.

The new documents confirm Foster + Partners as the architects, working with ARUP North America and Kier & Wright, a local civil engineering firm that has worked on Apple’s current campus and buildings for other tech companies (eBay, Nvidia, Cisco, Netflix and Sun, among others).

About the program:

  • An Office, Research and Development Building comprising approximately 2.8 million square feet for up to 13,000 employees
  •  A 1,000 seat Corporate Auditorium
  •  A Corporate Fitness Center
  •  Research Facilities comprising approximately 300,000 square feet
  • A Central Plant
  • Associated Parking

It’s a pretty amazing building. It’s a little like a spaceship landed. It’s got this gorgeous courtyard in the middle… It’s a circle. It’s curved all the way around. If you build things, this is not the cheapest way to build something. There is not a straight piece of glass in this building. It’s all curved. We’ve used our experience making retail buildings all over the world now, and we know how to make the biggest pieces of glass in the world for architectural use. And, we want to make the glass specifically for this building here. We can make it curve all the way around the building… It’s pretty cool.

- Steve Jobs

The round shape has also been cited as an important part of the campus’ security (better perimeter control) and to improve internal circulations.

It’s interesting to see that the objectives of the project are focused on reducing the use of electricity by generating its own energy on an on-site Central Plant, provide open green spaces “for Apple employees’ enjoyment” and to “exceed economic, social, and environmental sustainability goals through integrated design and development”. It seems Jobs choose the right firms for this.

By looking at the drawings it seems that the project is ready to go, and now it’s waiting for city approval. The city has revealed that they are very likely to approve the project, so it seems everything is on route for an opening in 2015.

Drawings and renderings after the break: