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Beijing Hutong House Renovation / ARCHSTUDIO

  • Architects: ARCHSTUDIO
  • Location: Beijing, Beijing, China
  • Architect in Charge: Han Wenqiang, Zhao Yang
  • Area: 160.0 sqm
  • Photographs: Xia Zhi, Zhang Lin Han, Wang Ning

© Xia Zhi © Xia Zhi © Xia Zhi © Xia Zhi

Otherothers' "Offset House" Reveals the Architecture Hidden in Suburban Homes

In the classic film The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy and friends manage to obtain a visit with the great and powerful wizard, who appears to them as an enormous, grotesque head, surrounded by smoke and flames, with a booming voice and a hostile demeanor. But when Toto pulls back the curtain, the wizard’s true nature is revealed, and it is only then that he is able to help the gang get the help for which they journeyed many miles down the yellow brick road. In architecture today, suburban houses share many of the characteristics of the wizard’s illusion: large, stand-offish and intimidating. But what if there is a more benevolent architecture hidden behind the smoke and flames? This is the thesis of Australian firm Otherothers' Offset House, on display now at the Chicago Architecture Biennale.

Courtesy of Otherothers Courtesy of Otherothers Courtesy of Otherothers Courtesy of Otherothers

New Images Released of Foster + Partners' Seagram-Adjacent Condos in New York

RFR and Foster + Partners have released new images of One Hundred East 53rd Street, a 63-story luxury residential tower in New York next to Mies van der Rohe's famed Seagram Building. The skyscraper, which was announced last year, will contain 94 residences, a swimming pool, wellness facility, spa, library and sitting rooms, and its trademark Foster minimalism is intended to "provide a counterpoint to the Seagram’s bronze edifice," according to the developers RFR.


Firms from London and Israel Design a Domestic Abuse Shelter in Israel

London firm, Amos Goldreich Architecture and Israel firm Jacobs-Yaniv Architects have come together to design a new shelter for the No to Violence Against Women charity, which helps domestic abuse victims in Israel. This will be the charity’s first purpose-built shelter, replacing an overcrowded, makeshift building.

Located in a quiet neighbourhood, the site is surrounded by a mix of private homes and townhouses and is within reach of community resources like stores, jobs, clinics, schools, parks, counseling centres and recreational facilities. The shelter will include independent living quarters for up to 12 families, communal areas, a kindergarten, a computer room, laundry facilities, kitchens, a refectory as well as staff accommodation and office areas.

Construction Begins on Zaha Hadid's One Thousand Museum in Miami

Following the ground breaking last December, construction has begun on Zaha Hadid’s One Thousand Museum in Miami, with 9,500 cubic yards of concrete already poured. Designed in association with the local architect of record, O’Donnell Dannwolf Partners Architects, the residential skyscraper will rise 62 stories, comprising half- and full-floor residences, duplex townhomes, and a single duplex penthouse, overlooking Museum Park and Biscayne Bay at 1000 Biscayne Boulevard. As a burgeoning area, Museum Park—once called Bicentennial Park—is home to the Peréz Art Museum Miami and will soon be home to the Frost Museum of Science.

400 Years of American Housing

From 17th century Postmedieval English homes to the “McMansions" of the 90s, check out Pop Chart Lab's structured survey of 121 North American homes from the past 400 years. Sorted into seven major categories and 40 subdivisions, the comprehensive diagram highlights the morphology of homes throughout the US.

Each print is signed and numbered by the artists, much like the Brooklyn-based company's popular "Schematic of Structures" poster that features mankind's 90 greatest architectural achievements. 

SimpsonHaugh and Partners Begins Construction on Dollar Bay Residential Tower in London

SimpsonHaugh and Partners has announced the construction of its new premier residential tower, called Dollar Bay, at the East India Dock overlooking Canary Wharf in London.

Named for the site’s World War Two heritage—“when dockworkers would tow American naval ships to their moorings for the cost of one dollar”—the building will provide unparalleled views of the River Thames from where it sits across from the O2 Arena.

Courtesy of SimpsonHaugh and Partners Courtesy of SimpsonHaugh and Partners Courtesy of SimpsonHaugh and Partners Courtesy of SimpsonHaugh and Partners

URBAN AGENCY's Luxury Apartment Design "Twists" French Planning Law

Designed by URBAN AGENCY and BET Satge, Le Twist is set to be a series of 10 luxury apartments with a ground floor restaurant that opens onto a semi-public garden. Commissioned in 2013, the architects were asked to re-evaluate an existing proposal for Montpellier, France. By sliding and twisting each storey, the firm was able to "comply with and 'twist' French planning law," gaining an extra 40% of floor space.

GAD Architecture's AHK Kundu Villas Shortlisted for WAF

The AHK Kundu Villas, a collection of homes by GAD Architecture, has recently been shortlisted for the World Architecture Festival (WAF) for Future Residential projects. The project, comprising 17 large, 56 medium and 50 small housing units, is sited next to a tourism zone in Antalaya on the Mediterranean coast of southwestern Turkey. Designed with sustainability in mind, the project makes use of resources available on the site.

Courtesy of GAD Architecture Courtesy of GAD Architecture Courtesy of GAD Architecture Courtesy of GAD Architecture

Open Call: International Competition to Design a Beautiful House

BW International is now accepting entries for its Design a Beautiful House competition, an international call offering £25,000 (about $39,000 USD) to winner(s). The competition is open to all designers, students, artists, and others from anywhere across the globe, and requires no registration fee.

Entrants are asked to think about the definition of beauty in order to create a design that considers the ways that beauty and aesthetics can enhance the function of a home and the experiences of its users.

In Residence: Carlos Herrera

“To build a house like this for yourself, it’s a very, very easy and very difficult task because you’re your own client, and you can do whatever you dreamt of, it has to be here, and there are no excuses to make mistakes or anything.”

In the latest installment of the In Residence series, NOWNESS goes into the home of Mexican architect Carlos Herrera in Cuernavaca, just outside Mexico City. While the house functions as a weekend residence, it was built to be lived in—as Herrera explains, it’s a place to entertain guests, and, eventually, it could be a place to retire. The single-level house follows Herrera’s simple, earth-toned design aesthetic, filled with clean lines and sharp angles. Learn more about the design and inspiration behind the house in the video above. 

How Popular Could "Anti-Builder" and "Anti-Architect" Homes Become?

The UK is in the midst of a housing crisis, the intricacies of which were detailed by Rowan Moore earlier this year. For decades the typical British housing stock has been of relatively poor quality, proliferated by developer-led consortiums and characterised by ruthless cost-efficiency for maximum profit. From this formula comes nothing but a monotony of off-the-shelf constructions which have, over time, become a national benchmark. These houses – often built of brick, boxy in form, and using as little space in the facade for openings – are commonly dark, spatially inadequate, and far below the standards that should be being aimed for. It’s like living in a well-appointed cave.

UNStudio's Ben van Berkel on Designing High-Rise for Central London

In the latest episode of Monocle's Section D, Josh Fehnert talks to Ben van Berkel, co-founder and principal of Amsterdam-based UNStudio, about London's new Caneletto residential tower. The office, which was founded in 1988, has completed projects around the world ranging from Rotterdam’s Erasmus Bridge to the Mercedes-Benz Museumin Stuttgart. With over 81 built projects, and 54 currently in progress (including Raffles City in Hangzhou and Scotts Tower in Singapore), London’s Canaletto Tower (which is due to be completed in 2015) marks the practice’s first major project in the UK. The tower, located at the confluence of two London districts — Islington and Shoreditch — marks a significant moment for the Dutch practice's œuvre.

COOKFOX Architects' 550 Vanderbilt Condo Opens for Sale

COOKFOX Architects’ new project, 550 Vanderbilt Avenue has opened for sale. The 17-storey building will be the first of four condominiums in the 22-acre Pacific Park Brooklyn development in Prospect Heights. The project aims to create a new neighbourhood of 14 buildings, all connected to 8-acres of public green space designed by landscape architecture firm Thomas Balsley Associates. Read more about this project after the break.

Travel Through 115 Years of U.S. Residential Architecture in this Interactive Infographic by iMove

Moving specialists iMove have created 115 Years of American Homes, a Scrolling Parallax Infographic in which viewers can “drive” through a neighborhood of single-family homes that reflect the style of their respective decades. For each home, graphics detail “tell-tale architectural features, design trends, average home price, and the historical and cultural context” of each decade from the 1900s through the present. Test out the interactive timeline here, and let us know: which decade of residential architecture is your favorite?

Dror Unveils 3 New Residential Designs for NYC

New York-based studio Dror has unveiled design concepts for three new residential buildings in New York City. The imagined buildings, spread throughout lower Manhattan, are based on the studio’s idea to “disrupt conventional building design by rethinking structure, where beauty and efficiency result from an imaginative, clever framework.”

Learn more about each of the plans, after the break.

The Dillon / Smith-Miller+Hawkinson Architects

Courtesy of Henry Smith-Miller © Alexander Severin/RAZUMMEDIA © Michael Moran © Michael Moran