ABSTRAKT Studio Architecture has won a nation-wide competition to design Canada’s national memorial to the victims of communism in Ottawa. Select from six finalists, ABSTRAKT’s provocative design superimposes 100 million singular pixel-like memory squares, each representing the fingertip of the lives lost, on a folded triangular concrete plane.
“As the most prolific communist murderer Joseph Stalin famously said: ‘One death is a tragedy; one million is a statistic’… This ‘statistic’ takes main stage in our design by realizing its sheer enormity, thus raising awareness that every human life is unique and precious,” stated ABSTRAKT.
Inclusivity as Architectural Program: A Reflection on Vancouver’s Woodward’s Redevelopment Five Years On
Officially opened in 2010, the Woodward’s Redevelopment project designed by Vancouver based Henriquez Partners Architects and situated in the city’s Downtown Eastside (DTES), was a contentious proposal from the time of its inception, and has continued to be so in the almost five years since its completion. Yet as the large-scale mixed-use complex, and its role in the community, nears the first of many milestone anniversaries, it offers us a chance for critical reflection and allows for perceptions and understandings to be gathered and assessed.
What has made Woodward’s an interesting case study, however, is the project’s attempt to act as a model for responsible development with respect to the regeneration of its surrounding urban and community context. Yet there has also been much criticism, with fears over rapid gentrification and claims that it has displaced some of the community’s most at-risk residents. For managing partner Gregory Henriquez, however, it was seen as an opportunity to introduce a place of inclusivity into the neighbourhood and as a chance to “share a portion of the wealth created in real estate development to support the greater good.”
REX has shared with us their competition proposal for Calgary’s New Central Library (NCL). Though Snøhetta and DIALOG ultimately won the competition, REX was shortlisted as a finalist with an unconventional scheme that was based on adaptability, serendipity and treating the librarians as curators. By literally stacking the library’s program according to the client’s desired sequence, REX formulated six typological clusters hoisted on top an illuminated plinth.
Check out the complete proposal, after the break.