AD Classics: Douglas House / Richard Meier & Partners Architects


Hovering over the shores of Lake , the Douglas House was built by in 1971-1973 for Jim and Jean Douglas. The house is gently placed on a steep slope over the water, almost as if it is floating amongst the trees. As Meier stated about the house, “So steep is the slope to the water that the house appears to have been dropped into the site, a machine-crafted object that has landed in a natural world. The dramatic dialogue between the whiteness of the house and the primary blues and greens of the water, trees, and sky allows the house not only to assert its own presence but to enhance, by contrast, the beauty of its natural environment as well.”

More on the Douglas House after the break.

New Acropolis Museum / Bernard Tschumi Architects

© Courtesy of Architects

Architects: Bernard Tschumi Architects
Location: Athens,
Associate Architect: ARSY
Bernard Tschumi Architects Team: Bernard Tschumi; Architect and Lead Designer Joel Rutten; Project Architect, Adam Dayem, Aristotelis Dimitrakopoulos, Jane Kim, Eva Sopeoglou, Kim Starr, Anne Save de Beaurecueil, Jonathan Chace, Robert Holton, Valentin Bontjes van Beek, Liz Kim, Daniel Holguin, Kriti Siderakis, Michaela Metcalfe, Justin Moore, Joel Aviles, Georgia Papadavid, Allis Chee, Thomas Goodwill, Véronique Descharrières, Christina Devizzi
ARSY Team: Michael Photiadis; Principal, George Kriparakos, Nikos Balkalbassis, Philippos Photiadis, Jaimie Peel, Niki Plevri, Maria Sarafidou, Makis Grivas, Elena Voutsina, Manoulis Economou, Anastassia Gianou, Miltiadis Lazaridis, Dimitris Kosmas
Structure: ADK and ARUP
Mechanical and Electrical: MMB Study Group S.A. and ARUP
Civil: Michanniki Geostatiki and ARUP
Acoustics: Theodore Timagenis
Lighting: ARUP, London
General Contractor: Aktor
Project Area: 21,000 sqm
Project Year: 2003-2009
Photographs: Courtesy of Bernard Tschumi Architects

AD Classics: Lever House / Skidmore, Owings & Merrill


The Lever House by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill was one of the first International style office buildings in the United States. Located in midtown Manhattan, it was originally the American corporate headquarters of the soap company Lever Brothers. Built between 1951-1952, the Lever House extends 24 stories in height right across from Mies van der Rohe’s Seagram Building, and stands as its own perfect glass box.

More on the Lever House after the break.

Akerselva Atrium / NBBJ

Courtesy of

Architects: NBBJ
Location: Oslo,
NBBJ Team: Peter Pran, Jonathan Ward, Martin Reeves, Stuart Rudd, Phu Duong, Cliff Green, Nick Worth, Ivan Equihua, Rachel Lin
Pran Arkitekter Team: Odd Sigvart Pran, Elizabeth Pran
Poulsson/Pran Architects Team: Marcus Pran, Andreas Poulsson, Jonas Sobstad, Inger Anita Reigstad, Jurg Frei, Erling Magnus Hjerman
Interior Architects: Zinc
Client: NCC Property Development, Oslo
Construction: NCC Construction
Owner: Vital Company
Project Area: 17,600
Project Year: 2009
Photographs: Tim Griffith, Jiri Havran

Greenwich Street Project / Archi-tectonics


Completed in 2004, the Greenwich Street Project by Archi-tectonics is a 64,000 square foot multi-unit residential building in just a few blocks from where the Hudson River meets the city. With the West Village to its north, SoHo, the heart of style to its West, and TriBeCa, where entrenpreneurship has transformed industry into lofts to its south, the Greenwich Street Project is the meeting point of three of downtown’s major cultural districts. Ironically enough, its design also involved the merging of an old renovated warehouse with a completely new structure, combining both to create appropriate live-work spaces that served its context.

More on Archi-tectonics Greenwich Street Project after the break.

Glass House / Unit Arkitektur AB

© Krister Engström

Architects: Unit Arkitektur AB
Location: Träslövsläge, Sweden
Design Principal: Mikael Frej + Klas Moberg
Project Architects: Frans Magnusson
Client: Karin and Sven-Olav
Floor area: 250 sqm ( House), 70 sqm (House inside House)
Project year: 2006-2011
Photographs: Krister Engström, Unit Arkitektur

AD Classics: The Glass House / Philip Johnson

© Creative Commons - Photo Credit: Melody Kramer

Inspired by Mies van der Rohe’s Farnsworth House, the Glass House by , with its perfect proportions and its simplicity, is considered one of the first most brilliant works of modern architecture. Johnson built the 47-acre estate for himself in New Canaan, . The house was the first of fourteen structures that the architect built on the property over a span of fifty years.

More on Johnson’s Glass House after the break.

AD Classics: IIT Master Plan and Buildings / Mies van der Rohe

© Hagen Stier – Crown Hall

In the year 1940, Armour Institute and Lewis Institute merged in to create the Illinois Institute of Technology. The merging of these two schools called for a new master plan for the university, and was commissioned for the job. Mies’ plan for the IIT campus was one of the largest projects he ever conceived and he developed it for twenty years. Today the campus contains 20 of his works, including the famous Crown Hall, which add up to be “the greatest concentration of Mies-designed buildings in the world.”More on the IIT Campus and Buildings after the break.

AD Classics: The Farnsworth House / Mies van der Rohe

Greg Robbins
The Farnsworth House, built between 1945 and 1951 for Dr. Edith Farnsworth as a weekend retreat, is a platonic perfection of order gently placed in spontaneous nature in Plano, Illinois. Just right outside of in a 10-acre secluded wooded site with the Fox River to the south, the  pavilion takes full advantage of relating to its natural surroundings, achieving Mies’ concept of a strong relationship between the house and nature.

 More on the Farnsworth House after the break. 

Old Mutual Central Campus / Perry + Anderson Architecture


Architects: Perry + Anderson Architecture / Glen Loudon Architect
Location: Cape Town,
Architectural Technical Documentation: Trifactor
Project Team: Stuart Anderson, Victoria Perry, Anthony Stricker, Glen Loudon, Mfusi Ngayi, Mahlubodwa Noah, Sivuyile Mcilongo
Structural Engineers: KFD Wilkinson
Client: OMIGPI
Project Area: 2,230 sqm
Project Year: 2007-2008
Photographs: Mike Wesson, Anthony Stricker

National Laboratory of Genomics / TEN Arquitectos

© Luis Gordoa

Architect: TEN Arquitectos/Enrique Norten
Location: Irapuato, Guanajuato.
Project Team: Enrique Norten, Salvador Arroyo, Victoria Grossi, Verónica Chávez, Carlos Marin, Mateo Riestra, Ernesto Orrante, Ricardo Orozco, Alejandro Mantecón, Gabriela Puente, Dionisio Arras, Uvaldo Arenas
Structure: Colinas de Buen, SA de CV, Ing. Óscar de Buen
MEP: DIIN, SA de CV. Ing. Alejandro Borboa
Client: National Laboratory of Genomics for Biodiversity
Year of Design: 2005-2007
Year of Construction: 2007-2010
Photographs: Luis Gordoa

House in Santa Teresa / SPBR Arquitetos

© Nelson Kon

Architects: SPBR Arquitetos
Location: Santa Teresa, Rio de Janeiro,
Director in Charge: Angelo Bucci
Project Team: Ciro Miguel, João Paulo Meirelles de Faria, Juliana Braga, Suzana Jeque, Tatiana Ozzetti
Structural Engineer: Jorge Zaven Kurkdjian
Landscape Architect: Fernando Magalhães Chacel
Lighting: Ricardo Heder
Services: Alberto Chagas Barreto
Site Area: 4,488.65 sqm
Constructed Area: 481.41 sqm
Design Year: 2004
Construction Year: 2005–2008
Photographs: Nelson Kon

Alfonso Gomez Street Office Building / PPST Arquitectura

© FG+SG – Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

Architects: Samuel Ruiz Torres de Carvalho, Pedro Palmero Cabezas, architects
Location: Madrid,
Project Team: Alfonso Górriz Figuera, Laura Peique Simón, Elena Gómez Agüero, Oscar Poveda Pérez, Oscar Pozuelo López, Javier Romero
Administrative Assistance: Mar Secades Pérez, Gema Esteban Abad
Structure: Jesús Hierro Sureda
Technical Equipment: Senorsa
Construction: Konin 22
Project Area: 6,638 sqm
Project Year: 2008
Photographs: FG+SG – Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

Vakko Headquarters and Power Media Center / REX

© Iwan Baan

Last year we presented you this interesting project by REX during its construction stage, where you could see how an unused structure was converted into the new headquarters for Vakko, integrated with a new complex steel structure. The project is now completed, and we can see the final result with photos by Iwan Baan and a complete set of drawings and diagrams courtesy of REX.

Despite the mix of the existing concrete structure with the new additions and the complex inner core (dubbed the “showcase”), the exterior of the building is read as a whole. The structural “X” of the panels on the facade break the monotony of the box on the outside, contrasting with the mirror like finish of the volume on top.

© Iwan Baan

The “showcase” fills the central void with a mirror finish that turns the volume into a sculpture (as seen on the photos and on the showcase elevations below), while housing different programs that benefit from the arrange of the boxes, such as the auditorium, meeting rooms and showrooms.

REX once again shows innovative structural solutions in relation with the program, together with new uses of materials as we previously saw on the Wyly Theatre in Dallas.

After the break, the architect’s description:

Location: Istanbul,
Clientes: Vakko and Power Media
Architect: REX
Key personnel: Erez Ella, Tomas Janka, Mathias Madaus, David Menicovich, Tsuyoshi Nakamoto, Joshua Prince-Ramus, Ishtiaq Rafiuddin, Tieliu Wu
Consultants: ARTE, Autoban, Buro Statik, Cedetas, Dora, Eleksis, Front, Gurmen Muhendislik, Lamglass, Norm Tecnic, Say Yapi, STEP, Superpool, Cem Mimarlik
Area: 9,100 sqm (98,000 sqf)
Completion: 2010
Program: Headquarters for a Turkish fashion house—including offices, showrooms, conference rooms, auditorium, museum, and dining hall—as well as the television studios, radio production facilities, and screening rooms of its media sister-company
Photography: REX, Iwan Baan

Kaze Hair Salon / Forte, Gimenes & Marcondes Ferraz Arquitetos

© Fran Parente
Architects: Fernando Forte, Lourenço Gimenes, Rodrigo Marcondes Ferraz
Location: Sao Paulo,
Project Team: Renata Davi, Monica Harumi
Coordinator: Dante Furlan
Structural Project: OPPEA
Electrical and Hydraulics Projects: Ramoska & Castellani
Construction: Marcelo Szprynger
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Fran Parente

Glass Pavilion at the Toledo Museum of Art / SANAA


Location: Toledo, Ohio,
Client: Toledo Museum of Art
Architect: Kazuyo Sejima + Ryue NishizawaSANAA
Team: Toshi Oki, Takayuki Hasegawa, Keiko Uchiyama, Mizuki Imamura, Tetsuo Kondo, Junya Ishigami
Built area: 7,000sqm
Site area: 20,000sqm
Opening: 2006
Structure: Guy Nordenson & Associates / SAPS
Glass consultant: Front Inc
Lighting: Arup / Kilt Planning
Photos: Iwan Baan

Abengoa Tecnological Campus Palmas Altas / RSH+P & Vidal y Asociados arquitectos

© Victor Sajara

Architects: Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners & Vidal y Asociados arquitectos
Location: Sevilla,
Project Team: María Álvarez-Santullano, María Astiaso, David Ávila, Stephen Barrett, Almudena de Benito, Jean-Pierre Casillas, Pablo Codesido, Luis Colino, Eva Couto, Esther Crespo, Marta Cumellas, Ana Belén Franco, Jason García, Claudia García-Nieto, Isabel Gil, Lennart Grut, Ivan Harbour, Carolina Hernández, Amarjit Kalsi, Verónica van Kesteren, Juan Laguna, Carmen Márquez, Irene Méndez, Mariola Merino, Héctor Orden, María Ortega, Javier Palacios, Almudena Pérez, Bárbara Pérez, David Pérez, Naira Pérez, Sonia Pérez, Martina Rauhut, Richard Rogers, Irene Rojo, Roberta Sartori, Amelia Seisdedos, Gentaro Shimada, Simon Smithson, David Sobrino, Graham Stirk, Oscar Torrejón, Paloma Uriel, Josefina Vago, Laura Vega, Luis Vidal, Laura Villa
Client: Centro Tecnológico Palmas Altas S.A.
Engineering: ARUP
Quantity surveyor: D-Fine
Project Area: 96,000 sqm
Budget: $132,000,000 Euro
Design Year: 2005-2009
Construction Year: 2007-2009
Photographs: Víctor Sájara

Vitus Bering Innovation Park / C. F. Møller Architects

© Julian Weyer

Architect: C. F. Møller Architects
Location: University College Vitus Bering, Horsens,
Client: University College Vitus Bering Denmark
Landscape architect: C. F. Møller Architects
Engineers: Grontmij | Carl Bro
Contractor: Pihl & Søn A/S
Project Area: 8,000 sqm
Project Year: 2008-2009
Photographs: Julian Weyer