Today, six months after the laser light extravaganza that marked the completion of The Shard in London, the controversial glass tower celebrated its official opening to the public. Architecture enthusiasts and residents were welcomed to join the mayor of London 244 meters above the capital on the 72 floor observation deck for the official ribbon cutting.
Designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, the 310 meter needle-point structure is currently the tallest in Western Europe. The two million square meter mixed-use development offers ample office space, restaurants, a five-star shangri-la hotel and residences.
Karakusevic Carson and David Chipperfield have been announced as the “preferred bidder” for a pair of residential towers the East London district of Shoreditch. As reported on BDOnline, the £25 million project at Colville Estate will rise up to 14 and 20 stories high to replace the existing 1950‘s low-rise buildings. This will be the second and last phase of the largest council-backed housing development in London and the first UK mass housing project for Chipperfield.
Grimshaw Architects are the latest practice to add their voice to the debate surrounding the capacity problem of London’s airports. Their innovative proposal, entitled ‘London: Hub City’, bucks the trend of recent ‘superhub’ proposals, which are frequently suggested as a solution to the problem.
Instead of creating a large ‘airport hub’ on a single site separated from the city, Grimshaw’s design prioritizes construction of new express lines by creating a ‘City Hub’ that allows passengers to transfer between London’s existing airports via the city center. The benefit being that expansion could be spread amongst its four existing airports incrementally, as needed, instead of being concentrated on the construction of one ‘super-hub’.
More on Grimshaw’s aviation proposal for London after the break.
Two leading London creatives meet for a chat and a chop in an East End hair salon.
Designed by Orproject, their Or2 project, which is a single surface roof structure that reacts to sunlight, won the 2012 Good Design Award. This award, which is known as the world’s most prestigious, recognized, and oldest Design Awards program, is organized annually by The Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design in cooperation with the European Centre for Architecture, Art, Design and Urban Studies. Special software components have been developed in order to create the shapes and to generate the cutting schedules so that the beauty of Or2 is its constant interaction with the elements, where its appearance is unique at each moment of the day. More images and architects’ description after the break.
An impressive team has been pieced together by Canary Wharf Group to design portions of the first phase for the Wood Wharf development in London’s major business district of Tower Hamlets. Already home to some of the UK’s tallest buildings, Canary Wharf has announced its plan to add a Herzog & de Meuron-designed residential high-rise to its glowing skyline on a redeveloped eight-hectare site.
Ascan Mergenthaler, senior partner at Herzog & de Meuron stated, “The new high-rise building will mediate between the city and the individual, the public and private, and will inject a new component of daily residential life into the evolving mixed-use Canary Wharf district. It will be both a symbol and the heart of the new Wood Wharf urban quarter, an extension of a dynamic global community and the start of a new vibrant neighborhood.”
See who else has been commissioned to partake in the first phase of the Canary Wharf development after the break.
Following the conclusion of David Chipperfield’s 2012 Venice Biennale, the British Pavilion has brought its investigations back to the UK to expand upon ten exceptional research projects that illustrate how architecture has shaped the culture and economy of countries around the world.
Should Amsterdam-style floating homes be built in London’s Docklands? Could the UK learn from Brazil’s successful identikit school-building program? Could Belfast be redeveloped by following a Berlin model? These are just some of the fascinating questions that will be addressed in a series of lectures, debates and events hosted by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) in collaboration with the British Council and the Architectural Association.
Mark your calendars for the following special events, which will run from February 26 through April 27, 2013.
Merging the work of architects, engineers, manufacturers, product designers, academics and artists, Prototyping Architecture explores the importance of prototypes in the delivery of high quality contemporary design. The exhibition, which runs at The Building Centre from January 11 to March 20, places an emphasis on research and experimentation to illustrate how trial assemblies can inform architecture with maquettes, models and full-scale sample productions on show from around the world.
Professor Michael Stacey, Director of Architecture at the University of Nottingham stated: “Prototyping Architecture celebrates vital methods of design development with new technologies that potentially herald the beginning of a second industrial revolution. The exhibition forms a bridge between architecture, engineering and art – with exhibits that are truly beautiful.”
More on Prototyping Architecture after the break.
Crane.tv visits British designer Tom Dixon in his shop in Portobello Dock. The designer of the iconic S-bend chair and Mirrorball light shares his disappointment at not becoming the next king of disco, and tells us what he’s learned about design from the chef of his restaurant, Dock Kitchen. Address: Wharf Building, Portobello Dock, 344 Ladbroke Grove, London, W10 5BU.
Launching January 14, RIBA‘s London Vauxhall – The Missing Link Competition is open to registered architects, landscape architects, urban designers and students of these disciplines worldwide. The Vauxhall area of London is at the heart of an area of huge new opportunity and Vauxhall One, the new Business Improvement District (BID) for Vauxhall are seeking design ideas to improve and enhance the public realm in Vauxhall, providing the ‘Missing Link’ between the New US Embassy Quarter and London’s South Bank. With multi-disciplinary design teams also encouraged, the intention is all entries will be exhibited during April 2013 at both the Garden Museum and an outdoor cultural trail through the parks and railway arches of Vauxhall. For more information, please visit RIBA Competitions here when the competition goes live next month.