From Prisons to Parks: How the US Can Capitalize On Its Declining Prison Populations

10:30 - 24 April, 2015
From Prisons to Parks: How the US Can Capitalize On Its Declining Prison Populations , The Former Bangalore jail in India, now Freedom Park . Image © Flickr CC user abhisheksundaram
The Former Bangalore jail in India, now Freedom Park . Image © Flickr CC user abhisheksundaram

Prisons are often seen as problematic for their local communities. After centuries of correctional facilities discouraging economic growth and occupying valuable real estate as a necessary component of towns and cities, many of these institutions have been relocated away from city centers and their abandoned vestiges are left as unpleasant reminders of their former use. In fact, the majority of prisons built in the United States since 1980 have been placed in non-metropolitan areas and once served as a substantial economic development strategy in depressed rural communities. [1] However, a new pressure is about to emerge on the US prison systems: beginning in 2010, America's prison population declined for the first time in decades, suggesting that in the near future repurposing these structures will become a particularly relevant endeavor for both community development and economic sustainability. These abandoned shells offer architects valuable opportunities to reimagine programmatic functions and transform an otherwise problematic location into an integral neighborhood space.

Why repurpose prisons rather than starting fresh? The answer to this question lies in the inherent architectural features of the prison typology, namely the fact that these structures are built to last. People also often forget that prison buildings are not limited to low-rise secure housing units - in fact, prisons feature an array of spaces that have great potential for reuse including buildings for light industrial activity, training or office buildings, low-security housing, and large outdoor spaces. These elements offer a wide variety of real estate for new programmatic uses, and cities around the world have begun to discover their potential. What could the US learn from these examples, at home and overseas?

The Former Bangalore jail in India, now Freedom Park . Image © Flickr CC user abhisheksundaram Boston's Liberty Hotel Interior. Image © Flickr CC user adewale_oshineye Aerial view of the former Lorton Prison. Image via Bing Maps Freedom Park in Lagos, Nigeria. Image via lagosfreedompark.com +9

Graveney School Sixth Form Block / Urban Projects Bureau

06:00 - 24 April, 2015
Graveney School Sixth Form Block / Urban Projects Bureau, © Kilian O’Sullivan
© Kilian O’Sullivan

© Kilian O’Sullivan © Kilian O’Sullivan © Kilian O’Sullivan © Kilian O’Sullivan +27

New London Architecture Unveils Updated 1:2000 Scale Model Of The UK Capital

05:00 - 24 April, 2015
New London Architecture Unveils Updated 1:2000 Scale Model Of The UK Capital, © Paul Raftery
© Paul Raftery

New London Architecture (NLA), an independent resource and forum for debate about the city's built environment, have unveiled a new, large-scale interactive model of the UK capital. Designed to provide a visual history of the city, NLA also intend for it to spark questions about its future. This model replaces an earlier one, which was revealed on the day that it was announced that London's bid to host the 2012 Olympic Games has been successful. Now, a decade later, the present projection of the city's built future has been mapped across the model, highlighting the locations of the 263 tall buildings planned or under construction. Visitors are also able to track the route and impact of new transport links, such as HS2 and Crossrail.

172-Year-Old Tunnel Project to Become London's Newest Performance Venue

15:00 - 23 April, 2015
172-Year-Old Tunnel Project to Become London's Newest Performance Venue, Courtesy of Tate Harmer
Courtesy of Tate Harmer

Nearly two hundred years after construction first began, and 150 years after being formally closed to the public, Isambard Kingdom Brunel's Rotherhithe shaft in the Thames Tunnel is slated to become London's newest performance space.

Thanks to a cantilevered staircase by local firm Tate Harmer, members of the public will be granted access to one of London's best-kept pieces of engineering history.

Learn more about the project after the break.

Robert A.M. Stern to Build Britian's Most Expensive Flats

16:30 - 16 April, 2015
Robert A.M. Stern to Build Britian's Most Expensive Flats, Rendering. Image © RAMSA
Rendering. Image © RAMSA

If approved, Robert A.M. Stern will build London's most expensive flats. Aiming to replace a 1960s car park and a number of other buildings in city's Mayfair district, the £2 billion "Audley Square House" apartment block is being commissioned by Phones4U billionaire John Caudwell.

As BD Online reports, Caudwell abandoned an already approved £300 million Foster + Partners scheme in favor of Stern's neo-classical design, saying he chose the New York-based architect for his "ability to design high-quality buildings that do not stand apart from their surroundings but rather fit in comfortably amongst their neighbors.”

House of Trace / TSURUTA Architects

06:00 - 16 April, 2015
House of Trace / TSURUTA Architects, © Tim Crocker
© Tim Crocker

© Tim Crocker © Tim Crocker © Tim Crocker © Tim Crocker +32

In Conversation With Will Hunter, Director Of The New London School Of Architecture

04:15 - 16 April, 2015
In Conversation With Will Hunter, Director Of The New London School Of Architecture, Will Hunter, founder and director of the LSA. Image © Simon Harris
Will Hunter, founder and director of the LSA. Image © Simon Harris

The great schools of architecture have been around since time immemorial, or at least that's how it can often feel. In London, a city particularly dense with institutions of this calibre, this is perhaps felt more acutely. How, then, do you develop an entirely new school in this tightly packed environment which has the potency and capacity to compete? Will Hunter, former executive editor of the London-based Architectural Review, began a process to do just this with an article in 2012. Following this, he set up the ARFA—Alternative Routes For Architecture—in order to explore different models for architectural education, calling upon professionals and academics to contribute to a series of informal discussions.

“When the tuition fees in the UK escalated to around £9000 per year in 2013, it got me thinking about different models for architectural education,” Hunter recalls. The casual meetings held around this time gradually become more serious until, “at a certain point, we decided to test them: to make a school.” The project gathered momentum from that point on and now, two years later, the London School of Architecture (LSA) are preparing to take in their first ‘trailblazing cohort’ of postgraduate students.

Richard Rogers Restructures Practice Prior To Relocation

04:00 - 15 April, 2015
Richard Rogers Restructures Practice Prior To Relocation, RSHP's Leadenhall Building (the "Cheesegrater") in London. Image © Richard Bryant – Courtesy of British Land/Oxford Properties
RSHP's Leadenhall Building (the "Cheesegrater") in London. Image © Richard Bryant – Courtesy of British Land/Oxford Properties

The Architects' Journal have reported that London based practice Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners (RSHP), headed by Richard Rogers, has refined its in-house structure "as the practice continues to implement its long-term succession plan." The practice, who will move into their new home on level fourteen of the Leadenhall Building following its completion last year, will operate one studio led by Richard Rogers alongside partner Simon Smithson; another by Graham Stirk with partner Richard Paul; and a third headed by Ivan Harbour.

Farshid Moussavi Elected as New Royal Academician

12:30 - 13 April, 2015
Farshid Moussavi Elected as New Royal Academician , FMA's winning proposal for the Jardins de la Lironde Competition. Image © Farshid Moussavi Architecture
FMA's winning proposal for the Jardins de la Lironde Competition. Image © Farshid Moussavi Architecture

Farshid Moussavi has been elected into the Royal Academy of Arts, joining Eva Jiricna, Zaha Hadid, David Chipperfield, Nicholas Grimshaw, and 11 other architects as a Royal Academician in the program's architecture category. The Iranian-born architect best known for her work on the Yokohama International Cruise Terminal in Japan, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland, the flagship store for Victoria Beckham in London, and her installation at the 2012 Architecture Biennale in Venice.  

"I’m particularly pleased to welcome Farshid because the Royal Academy architects currently comprise a more distinguished group than at any time in its long history," commented Christopher Le Brun, president of the Royal Academy.

FAT And Crimson's 'A Clockwork Jerusalem' To Be Exhibited In London

04:00 - 10 April, 2015
FAT And Crimson's 'A Clockwork Jerusalem' To Be Exhibited In London, Electric Pastoral. Image © FAT Architecture / Sam Jacob
Electric Pastoral. Image © FAT Architecture / Sam Jacob

A Clockwork Jerusalem, the exhibition showcased in the British Pavilion at last year's Venice Biennale, will make it's UK debut at London's Architectural Association (AA) next month. Commissioned by the British Council and curated by Sam Jacob, co-founder of FAT, and , partner at Dutch practice Crimson Architectural Historians, the exhibition shines a light on the large scale projects of the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s by exploring the "mature flowering of British Modernism at the moment it was at its most socially, politically and architecturally ambitious - but also the moment that witnessed its collapse."

Richard Rogers Donates His Parents' Home To Harvard GSD

04:00 - 6 April, 2015
Richard Rogers Donates His Parents' Home To Harvard GSD, Richard Roger's parents' house in Wimbledon, London. Image © Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners LLP
Richard Roger's parents' house in Wimbledon, London. Image © Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners LLP

Richard Rogers has announced that the home he built for his parents in Wimbledon, London, will be gifted to Harvard’s Graduate School of Design (GSD) for the training of doctorates in the field of architecture. The home, which will be donated by his charity, the Richard Rogers Charitable Settlement, was completed between 1967 and 1968 by Richard and his then wife Su Rogers. Originally designed for his parents, Dr. William Nino and Dada Rogers, the Grade II* listed pre-fabrictated single storey dwelling was later adapted for Rogers' son Ab and his family, before being put on the market in 2013 for £3.2million ($4.8million).

Carsten Höller’s Giant Slides Return to London

08:00 - 4 April, 2015
Carsten Höller’s Giant Slides Return to London, via BBC
via BBC

German artist Carsten Höller is returning to London with plans for two new giant slides to be built at the Hayward Gallery this Summer. As part of his exhibition “Decision,” Holler will provide visitors with a two-slide exit option that will (hopefully) induce an “emotional state that is a unique condition somewhere between delight and madness.”

“[Holler] is "one of the world's most thought-provoking and profoundly playful artists, with a sharp and mischievous intelligence bent on turning our 'normal' view of things upside-down,” says Ralph Rugoff, director of the Hayward Gallery. Decision, he continued, "will ask visitors to make choices, but also, more importantly, to embrace a kind of double vision that takes in competing points of view, and embodies what Holler calls a state of 'active uncertainty' - a frame of mind conducive to entertaining new possibilities.”

Fitzrovia House / West Architecture

16:00 - 3 April, 2015
Fitzrovia House / West Architecture, © Peter Cook
© Peter Cook

© Peter Cook © Peter Cook © Peter Cook © Peter Cook +11

Turnmill / Piercy&Company

06:00 - 3 April, 2015
Turnmill / Piercy&Company, © Hufton + Crow
© Hufton + Crow
  • Architects

  • Location

    63 Clerkenwell Road, London EC1M 5NP, UK
  • Area

    9032.0 sqm
  • Project Year

    2015
  • Photographs

© Hufton + Crow © Hufton + Crow © Hufton + Crow © Hufton + Crow +19

The Life Of Dalibor Vesely: Teacher, Philosopher, Acclaimed Academic

04:00 - 3 April, 2015
The Life Of Dalibor Vesely: Teacher, Philosopher, Acclaimed Academic, Dalibor Vesely (1934-2015) at the AA, London, in 2013. Image © Valerie Bennett
Dalibor Vesely (1934-2015) at the AA, London, in 2013. Image © Valerie Bennett

Dalibor Vesely, a celebrated architectural historian, philosopher and teacher, died this week in London aged 79. Over the course of his teaching career, which spanned five decades, he tutored a number of the world’s leading architects and thinkers from Daniel Libeskind, Alberto Pérez-Gómez and Robin Evans, to Mohsen Mostafavi and David Leatherbarrow.

Vesely was born in Prague in 1934, five years before the Nazi occupation of Czechoslovakia. Following World War II, he studied engineering, architecture, art history and philosophy in Prague, Munich, Paris and Heidelberg. He was awarded his doctorate from Charles University (Prague) having been taught and supervised by Josef Havlicek, Karel Honzik, and Jaroslav Fragner. Although later he would be tutored by James Stirling, it was the philosopher of phenomenology Jan Patočka who, in his own words, “contributed more than anyone else to [his] overall intellectual orientation and to the articulation of some of the critical topics” explored in his seminal book, Architecture in the Age of Divided Representation, published in 2004.

Look & Listen: A New Sound Responsive Exhibition In London

04:25 - 2 April, 2015
Look & Listen: A New Sound Responsive Exhibition In London, © G. G. Archard
© G. G. Archard

Look & Listen, a new sound responsive exhibition at the recently opened Sto Werkstatt gallery in London, explores "the often unnoticed, yet vital role acoustics play in our experience of place." Designed by The Klassnik Corporation, the exhibition offers a variety of "sonic experiences" which encourage the visitor to focus on the audible aspects of architecture. It creates a unique set of environments built using Sto’s range of acoustic systems, "utilising the perfect balance of design flexibility and technical leadership the acoustic materials offer." The installation also demonstrates the materials‘ capabilities in reducing reverberation and promoting clearer sound.

Review: 'All Of This Belongs To You' - Civic Urbanism At London's Victoria & Albert Museum

05:00 - 1 April, 2015
Review: 'All Of This Belongs To You' - Civic Urbanism At London's Victoria & Albert Museum, A neon sign in the V&A’s grand entrance introduces the 'All of This Belongs to You' exhibition. Image © Peter Kelleher / Victoria & Albert Museum
A neon sign in the V&A’s grand entrance introduces the 'All of This Belongs to You' exhibition. Image © Peter Kelleher / Victoria & Albert Museum

The Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A), named after the Queen and Her Consort, has its foundations in the Great Exhibition of 1851 amidst the wealth, innovation and squalor of the Industrial Revolution. Britain was flooded by prosperity which allowed for the development of major new institutions to collect and exhibit objects of cultural significance or artistic value. The institute’s first director, Henry Cole, declared that it should be “a schoolroom for everyone,” and a democratic approach to its relationship with public life has remained the cornerstone of the V&A. Not only has it always been free of charge but it was also the first to open late hours (made possible by gas lighting), allowing a more comprehensive demographic of visitor.

Their latest exhibition, which opens today, seeks to realign the museum’s vast collection and palatial exhibition spaces in South Kensington with these founding concepts. The interventions of All of This Belongs to You attempt to push the V&A’s position as an extension of London’s civic and cultural built environment to the fore, testing the museum’s ability to act as a 21st century public institution. To do this in London, a city where the notion of public and private is increasingly blurred, has resulted in a sequence of compelling installations which are tied together through their relevance either in subject matter, technique, or topicality.

The Ethics of Dust: Trajan’s Column by Jorge Oteros-Pailos. Image © Peter Kelleher / Victoria & Albert Museum ‘AgBags’ installed on the V&A’s stone façade as part of a work by Natalie Jermijenko. Image © Peter Kelleher / Victoria & Albert Museum Spike studs by Kent Stainless Ltd. that are intended 
to discourage people from occupying various spaces in the city. Image © Peter Kelleher / Victoria & Albert Museum MacBook Air casing and components from a computer used by journalists to write editorial about the data leaked to The Guardian newspaper by Edward Snowden, a former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor. Image © The Guardian/ Victoria & Albert Museum +9

Old Church Street Town House / TDO Architecture

06:00 - 31 March, 2015
Old Church Street Town House / TDO Architecture, © Ben Blossom
© Ben Blossom

© Ben Blossom © Ben Blossom © Ben Blossom © Ben Blossom +21