Between March of 2013 and December of 2014, Simon Henley of London-based practice Henley Halebrown wrote a regular column for ArchDaily titled “London Calling,” covering architectural topics of note in the UK's capital. Now, Henley is returning to his column – but in the wake of 2016's shock political developments, his column is re-branding. Thus, here he presents the first of his column “Beyond London” – a look at architectural topics around the UK. Here, Henley presents his opinion on those political developments, and the role architects should play as the UK embarks on a new period in its history.
Post-Brexit, British architects need to think hard about the profession’s London-centric position. There has been a policy of inclusion of non-London architects on panels, their work in magazines and on awards shortlists, but this is not enough. It was quite clear on June 24th when the London design community awoke to the realization that Britain will leave the European Union, that a “Remain”-minded bubble had formed within the capital. The same may be true of the other large cities around the country which voted largely in favour of “Remain.”
This week London's Science Museum will open The Winton Gallery, a new space dedicated to the study and exploration of mathematics, designed by Zaha Hadid Architects. While this is the practice's first permanent public museum exhibition, it also represents the first UK project to open since the death of its eponymous founder and director.
Inspired by the Handley Page aircraft, the design of the space was conceived through observing equations of airflow used in the aviation industry. The layout and lines of the gallery therefore represents the movement of air that would have flowed around this historic aircraft in flight – a metaphor which extends from the positioning of the showcases and benches to the three-dimensional curved surfaces of the central pod structure.
http://www.archdaily.com/801015/inside-zaha-hadid-architects-new-mathematics-gallery-for-the-london-science-museumAD Editorial Team
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) announced the President’s Medals Student Awards at a special event today in London. The awards, recognised as the world’s most prestigious in architectural education, were inaugurated in 1836 (making them, including the RIBA Gold Medal, the institute's oldest award). Three medals in particular—the Bronze for a Part I student (Bachelor level), the Silver for a Part II student (Masters level), and the Dissertation Medal—are awarded to “promote excellence in the study of architecture [and] to reward talent and to encourage architectural debate worldwide.” In addition to these, the winners of the Serjeant Award for Excellence in Drawing and the SOM Foundation Fellowships alongside a rostra of commendations have also been announced.
http://www.archdaily.com/800953/2016-riba-presidents-medals-winners-announcedAD Editorial Team
Architectural firm AL_A has unveiled its design for Pitch/Pitch, a series of 5-a-side soccer pitches designed for unused or temporarily vacant lots across London, as well as in other cities internationally.
Created as a response to shortage of sport space in inner cities, the project is meant to be fast and easy to construct, “meaning it could be set up for a fortnight to coincide with a World Cup tournament, or last for a year, bringing use to vacant sites that might otherwise lie dormant.”
After working with Arup, the practice developed a modular system that utilizes a lightweight carbon-fiber structure, a material generally associated with the aerospace industry, but that is emerging architecturally at larger scales.
The inaugural show at the new LondonDesign Museum, Fear and Love, presents a collection of "reactions to a complex world." Featuring eleven specially-commissioned installations designed by the likes of OMA/AMO, Hussein Chalayan, Andrés Jaque and Metahaven, the spatial context which frames them is the work of Sam Jacob Studio.
Eric Parry Architects’ 1 Undershaft has been granted planning permission from the City of London Corporation’s Planning Committee, which will allow the 73-story tower to become the tallest building in the London Financial District and the second tallest building in the UK, behind only The Shard.
On Thursday 17th of November, at the World Architecture Festival in Berlin, Patrik Schumacher gave a lecture offering his theory on how to address London’s Housing crisis. Given Schumacher’s well-known penchant for neoliberal economics, it was perhaps little surprise that his plan included a number of highly controversial ideas, such as the elimination of all forms of social housing and planning, and the privatization of all public space—with Schumacher highlighting Hyde Park as a particularly interesting opportunity.
Though ArchDaily was in attendance at the lecture, we chose not to cover Schumacher’s speech, at least in part because the audible boos from the crowd indicated that this was not a position that the wider architectural profession was interested in giving publicity to. However, the news was picked up by a number of other architectural publications including Dezeen; as a result, Schumacher’s speech became front page news on the London Evening Standard, prompting a response from London Mayor Sadiq Khan who said Schumacher’s ideas were “out of touch” and “just plain wrong.” These developments in turn have prompted an outcry from the architectural profession, causing Zaha Hadid Architects to write an open letter in response to the furore. Read on to see the full letter.
Architectural photographer Rod Edwards specializes in 360º virtual reality imagery and virtual tours of iconic buildings. Having spent the last decade producing this type of media, Edwards was recently commissioned by Visit Britain to shoot his “More London” project as part of the global campaign for the 2015 James Bond film “Spectre.”
Read on to see “More London” and more projects by Edwards.
Intimidating to design a Design Museum for designers? No, because what you're doing is working with the challenges of the existing space.
In this new video from NOWNESS, the audience is treated to a viewing of the new Design Museum in London, courtesy of its interior architect John Pawson. Part interview and part guided tour, NOWNESS uses the unorthodox technique of giving the building's designer his own camera, making parts of the video an intriguing insight into how Pawson sees his own work.
Designed in collaboration with OMA and Allies and Morrison, the project is a thorough renovation of the former Commonwealth Institute building, a 1962 structure by Robert Matthew, a founding partner of RMJM. Pawson dwells on the experience of working with their dramatic hyperbolic paraboloid roof, the materials used in the design, and the challenges of working on such a sensitive project.
Adjaye Associates, alongside development manager Alchemi Group, have submitted a planning application for 5 Strand, a mixed-use scheme adjacent to London's iconic Trafalgar Square. Inspired and informed by the surrounding historic buildings, the new 5 Strand will include 62,000 square feet (5,760 square meters) of office space, 26 apartments, and two ground-level retail units.