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How Narinder Sagoo And Foster + Partners Are Turning Architectural Preconceptions On Their Head (With A Pencil)

14:45 - 22 September, 2017
How Narinder Sagoo And Foster + Partners Are Turning Architectural Preconceptions On Their Head (With A Pencil), © Foster + Partners
© Foster + Partners

This short article, written by the author and critic Jonathan Glancey, coincides with the launch of the inaugural Architecture Drawing Prize – a competition curated by the World Architecture Festival, the Sir John Soane's Museum, and Make. The deadline for the award has been extended to September 25, 2017, and successful entries will be exhibited in both London and Berlin.

For architects, says Narinder Sagoo, Head of Design Communications at Foster + Partners, drawings are about story telling. They are also a highly effective way of raising questions about design projects. Although the history of architecture—certainly since the Italian Renaissance—has been mapped by compelling drawings asserting the primacy, and reflecting the glory, of fully resolved buildings, there is another strain of visualisation that has allowed architects to think through projects free of preconceptions.

© Foster + Partners © Foster + Partners © Foster + Partners © Foster + Partners + 8

Space Popular Reignite the Concerns of "The Glass Chain" Letters By Way of Virtual Reality

16:45 - 17 September, 2017

"The Glass Chain" (Die Gläserne Kette in its native German) was an exchange of written letters initiated by Bruno Taut in November 1919. The correspondence lasted only a year, and included the likes of Walter Gropius, Hans Scharoun, and Paul Gösch. In the letters, the penfriends—thirteen in all—speculated and fantasized about the possibilities of glass, imagining, in the words of Fredrik Hellberg and Lara Lesmes (Space Popular), "fluid and organic glass follies and colourful crystal cathedrals covering entire mountain chains and even reaching into space."

© Ben Blossom © Ben Blossom © Ben Blossom © Ben Blossom + 18

10 Teams Selected as Winners of Hyperloop One Global Challenge

14:30 - 15 September, 2017
10 Teams Selected as Winners of Hyperloop One Global Challenge, Screenshot via Mexloop
Screenshot via Mexloop

Hyperloop One has announced the 10 winners of its Hyperloop One Global Challenge, which sought to identify the most impactful potential Hyperloop routes across the globe. From hundreds of applicants, 10 systems located in 5 different countries were selected by a panel of experts from fields of infrastructure, technology and transportation as the strongest.

Foster + Partners Gains Planning Permission for Snowdon Aviary Transformation at the London Zoo

16:00 - 13 September, 2017
Foster + Partners Gains Planning Permission for Snowdon Aviary Transformation at the London Zoo, © Foster + Partners
© Foster + Partners

The Westminster Council has approved plans for the Foster + Partners-led transformation of the Snowdon Aviary at ZSL London Zoo. Designed by English architect and theorist Cedric Price in collaboration with Frank Newby and Lord Snowdon, the Grade II-listed structure became the first aviary in the UK to allow visitors to walk through a natural bird habitat when it opened to the public in 1962.

The revamp will preserve many of the original design qualities from the original structure, while updating safety and viewing strategies for its new inhabitants: a family of colobus monkeys and parrots. To make the monkeys feel at home, the design features a series of platforms and vertical elements, allowing visitors to learn about the animals as they swing, jump and explore their surroundings.

Demolition is Underway on Alison and Peter Smithson's Robin Hood Gardens in London

15:05 - 29 August, 2017
Demolition is Underway on Alison and Peter Smithson's Robin Hood Gardens in London, via <a href='http://https://twitter.com/saverobinhood/status/900359306658369536'>Twitter user @saverobinhood</a>
via Twitter user @saverobinhood

Demolition has officially commenced on East London housing development Robin Hood Gardens, bringing to an end any chance of a last-minute preservation effort for the Brutalist icon. Designed by British architects Alison and Peter Smithson and completed in 1972, plans for the site’s clearing and redevelopment have been in the works for more than five years, before government indecision and a spirited protest campaign led by architects including Richard Rogers, Zaha Hadid, Robert Venturi, and Toyo Ito put those plans in doubt.

Mecanoo Selected to Transform Perth City Hall in Scotland into New Cultural Center

12:00 - 23 August, 2017
Mecanoo Selected to Transform Perth City Hall in Scotland into New Cultural Center , Main Space. Image © Mecanoo Architecten
Main Space. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

Mecanoo has been selected to design the renovation of the historically landmarked Perth City Hall in Scotland, transforming the building into a new cultural facility through a series of sensitive interventions and a reimagined space flow. Envisioned as a new gateway to Perth, the scheme will pull from the city’s history and culture to create a place that is accessible to all.

Cafe. Image © Mecanoo Architecten Aerial View. Image © Mecanoo Architecten Learning Center. Image © Mecanoo Architecten © <a href='http://https://www.flickr.com/photos/ninian_reid/21767259146/in/photolist-zauTMu-9Qs2tp-d4Fmpy-d4FjcL-9QuQJd-d4FhDW-d4EZ17-9QuQSY-ed34J3-X1CA4S-9QuR9W-9Qs2cc-s8snXL-9QuRbQ-d4F2GU-9QuQFU-9QuQVd-fDW28n-s8reEJ-T1PJh7-cosyCC-hhAoPj-9Qs2re-9QuQEf-9QuQXb-8CKAqT-pdAt2S-fSbRmh-UezWwG-VZMpkq-pdAyV5-fDVZ3Z-rtdLsp-puNBvX-pwCro4-pb5sgT-X1CB61-d4FaXj-d4EWLY-d4F54A-cosBk1-d4F7Do-9JmUh1-nFzoL3-9pYwWY-yuQxQ-v5M5eB-cotc3w-brazGr-d4FeJ3'>Flickr user ninian_reid</a>. Licensed under CC BY 2.0. ImagePerth City Hall today + 5

AL_A, DS+R, Selldorf Among 6 Teams Shortlisted for Renovation of 18th Century Palladian House in Surrey

13:30 - 21 August, 2017
AL_A, DS+R, Selldorf Among 6 Teams Shortlisted for Renovation of 18th Century Palladian House in Surrey

Six teams have been shortlisted in a competition to restore and renovate the historic Clandon Park mansion in the county of Surrey, England, after the National Park property received heavy damage from a fire in 2015.

Organized by Malcolm Reading Consultants, the competition tasked teams with restoring and updating the interiors of the 18th-century Palladian house, as well as designing new flexible event spaces and visitor facilities within the existing building footprint.

London's Garden Bridge Project Officially Axed After £37 Million in Public Costs

11:20 - 14 August, 2017
London's Garden Bridge Project Officially Axed After £37 Million in Public Costs, Courtesy of Garden Bridge Trust
Courtesy of Garden Bridge Trust

The saga of London’s controversial Thames Garden Bridge project has finally come to end, as the Garden Bridge Trust has announced the official “closure of the project” after losing the support of the public and London Mayor Sadiq Khan.

"It is with great regret that Trustees have concluded that without Mayoral support the project cannot be delivered,” said Lord Mervyn Davies, Chairman of the Garden Bridge Trust in a statement released today.

“We are incredibly sad that we have not been able to make the dream of the Garden Bridge a reality and that the Mayor does not feel able to continue with the support he initially gave us.” 

Courtesy of Garden Bridge Trust Courtesy of Garden Bridge Trust Courtesy of Garden Bridge Trust Courtesy of Garden Bridge Trust + 9

wHY-led Team Wins Competition for Edinburgh's Ross Pavilion

10:20 - 1 August, 2017
wHY-led Team Wins Competition for Edinburgh's Ross Pavilion, © wHY
© wHY

The team led by US-based architects wHY has been selected as the winner of the Ross Pavilion International Design Competition, beating out proposals from Adjaye Associates, BIG, Flanagan Lawrence, Page\Park Architects, Reiulf Ramstad Arkitekter and William Matthews Associates + Sou Fujimoto Architects.

Featuring an international collaboration of architects, engineers and creative agencies – including Edinburgh-based design studio GRAS, Groves-Raines Architects, Arup, Studio Yann Kersalé, O Street, Stuco, Creative Concern, Noel Kingsbury, Atelier Ten and Lawrence Barth – the team envisioned a rolling terrain for the West Princes Street Gardens site that the jury lauded as both exciting and respectful of its historic setting.

© wHY © wHY © wHY © wHY + 7

Norman Foster Discusses the Dawn of High-Tech Architecture in This 1971 Interview

12:00 - 25 July, 2017

"It's quite evident that you're prepared to abandon traditional ways of sitting," Bernard Keeffe exclaims as he collapses into a bright yellow beanbag in Norman Foster's home. "For years," he continues, "people have thought that if they sat down they would have to sit on a chair, but now you have demonstrated that this is not necessary!" In this lengthy 1971 interview with Lord Foster, drawn from the archives of Thames TV, Keeffe questions the practice's early hi-tech approach to architecture in the context of a landscape in which buildings were becoming "ever more complicated."

BDP Selected to Restore London's Iconic Palace of Westminster

10:15 - 18 July, 2017
BDP Selected to Restore London's Iconic Palace of Westminster, Palace of Westminster, London. Image Courtesy of BDP
Palace of Westminster, London. Image Courtesy of BDP

Following a two year-long bidding process, British-based international practice BDP (Building Design Partnership) have been chosen to restore and safeguard the future of the Palace of Westminster, the seat of the United Kingdom's parliament. Outbidding Foster + Partners, Allies and Morrison, and HOK the project is expected to run into billions of pounds and could see the two chambers—the House of Commons and the House of Lords, plus all ancillary support staff—move out of the iconic building for to a decade.

These Enormous Concrete Acoustic Mirrors Pepper the British Coastline

10:15 - 17 July, 2017
These Enormous Concrete Acoustic Mirrors Pepper the British Coastline, Denge (Greatstone-on-Sea, Kent, Great Britain). Image Courtesy of Tom Lee (licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0)
Denge (Greatstone-on-Sea, Kent, Great Britain). Image Courtesy of Tom Lee (licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0)

These vast concrete dishes, which can be found along the northern and easterly British coastline, are sound mirrors. Originally designed to capture the sounds of incoming enemy aircraft as they approached the United Kingdom from across the English Channel and the North Sea (although one was also built at Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq in Malta), these military listening devices acted as a rudimentary early warning system in the decades before Radar was developed and deployed.

Denge (Greatstone-on-Sea, Kent, Great Britain). Image Courtesy of Flickr User "Bodacea" (licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0) Denge (Greatstone-on-Sea, Kent, Great Britain). Image Courtesy of Paul Russon (licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0) Courtesy of Mark Duncan (licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0) Denge (Greatstone-on-Sea, Kent, Great Britain). Image Courtesy of Hywel Williams (licensed under CC) + 7

David Adjaye, Peter Murray and Alison Brooks Among Mayor of London's New Team of "Design Advocates"

10:30 - 13 July, 2017
David Adjaye, Peter Murray and Alison Brooks Among Mayor of London's New Team of "Design Advocates", London Skyline in 2005. (Licensed by CC BY-SA 3.0). Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons User: Mewiki
London Skyline in 2005. (Licensed by CC BY-SA 3.0). Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons User: Mewiki

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has appointed fifty "Design Advocates" to support his efforts in ensuring that development across the British capital is "high-quality, inclusive, and sustainable." Well-known names—such as Sir David Adjaye, Peter Murray and Alison Brooks—have been nominated alongside a broad range of architects, activists and thinkers, including Russell Curtis, Daisy Froud, Dan Hill, Richard Lavington, Tom Holbrook, Rory Hyde, Adam Khan, and Maria Smith.

A Different Kind of Sharing Economy: How the REAL Foundation is Building Social Equity Into the Nuts and Bolts of Architecture

04:00 - 13 July, 2017
A Different Kind of Sharing Economy: How the REAL Foundation is Building Social Equity Into the Nuts and Bolts of Architecture, Interior design by REAL Foundation for Common Stock: Sharing as Luxury, the fourth tower in the Derivative Architecture series. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation
Interior design by REAL Foundation for Common Stock: Sharing as Luxury, the fourth tower in the Derivative Architecture series. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation

The Chicago Architecture Biennial is the largest platform for contemporary architecture in North America, and the blog invites designers and other contributors to express their perspectives in a range of formats. The 2017 exhibition, entitled Make New History, will be free and open to the public between September 16, 2017 and January 6, 2018.

Courtesy of Real Foundation
Courtesy of Real Foundation

Chicago Architecture Biennial (CAB): We want to start by noting that REAL foundation, which stands for "Real Estate Architecture Laboratory," is not a typical design practice. You design spaces, but you also make books, exhibitions, a magazine, and tools for advocacy. Why?

Jack Self (JS): The REAL foundation is an unusual model for an architectural firm. We're a normal architectural practice, but we are governed by a very strict set of conditions that allow us to pursue certain political and economic ideologies. We see the social role of the architect, as well as the structure of the architectural firm, as a subject for design as much as buildings.

The Ingot, a proposal by the REAL Foundation for The Ingot, a gold-plated tower sited next to London Bridge, and designed to house low-paid, precarious workers. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation Interior view of Default Grey, a proposal for a domestic tower that provides inhabitants autonomy from debt and enough anonymity to shield them from surveillance. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation Installation view of Home Economics, the British Pavilion curated by Jack Self with Finn Williams and Shumi Bose at the 2016 Venice Biennale. Each room in the pavilion addressed a different facet of the contemporary crisis of living. Photo by Cristiano Corte. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation Installation view of Home Economics, the British Pavilion curated by Jack Self with Finn Williams and Shumi Bose at the 2016 Venice Biennale. Each room in the pavilion addressed a different facet of the contemporary crisis of living. Photo by Cristiano Corte. Image Courtesy of Real Foundation + 6

Royal Academy of Arts Adds Permanent Architecture Gallery to Chipperfield Renovation Plans

14:00 - 7 July, 2017
Royal Academy of Arts Adds Permanent Architecture Gallery to Chipperfield Renovation Plans, The Royal Academy’s north-facing entrance, Burlington Gardens. Image © Hayes Davidson. Courtesy of Royal Academy of Arts
The Royal Academy’s north-facing entrance, Burlington Gardens. Image © Hayes Davidson. Courtesy of Royal Academy of Arts

London’s Royal Academy of Arts has announced plans for a new permanent architecture-specific gallery and the creation of two new international architecture awards as part of the RA’s mission to “garner a wider appreciation and understanding of architecture, bringing to the fore its vital relationship to culture and society.”

The new architecture space, along with a cafe, will be housed within the Dorfman Senate Rooms in Burlington Gardens, allowing the academy to show architectural exhibition year-round. The architecture rooms join wider renovation plans led by David Chipperfield Architects that will also include a new naturally-lit theater.

Cross-section of the Royal Academy’s site in 2018. Image © David Chipperfield Architects. Courtesy of Royal Academy of Arts Architecture Studio in 2018. Image © David Chipperfield Architects. Courtesy of Royal Academy of Arts The Dorfman Senate Rooms in 2018. Image © David Chipperfield Architects. Courtesy of Royal Academy of Arts © David Chipperfield Architects. Courtesy of Royal Academy of Arts + 10

C.F. Møller to Lead Design of Project Replacing Alison and Peter Smithson’s Robin Hood Gardens

14:45 - 29 June, 2017
C.F. Møller to Lead Design of Project Replacing Alison and Peter Smithson’s Robin Hood Gardens, Courtesy of C.F. Møller Architects
Courtesy of C.F. Møller Architects

The Swan Housing Association has announced the appointment of Danish firm C.F. Møller to join Haworth Tompkins and Metropolitan Workshop in designing housing projects for the Blackwall Reach regeneration plan, a £300 million redevelopment effort which will replace Alison and Peter Smithson’s Brutalist east London estate, Robin Hood Gardens.

As leaders of Phase 3 of the plan, C.F. Møller will design housing for the eastern portion of the site. A total of 330 one- to five-bedroom residential units, half of which have been designated as affordable, will be located within a courtyard block complex at the edge of an existing garden mound – one of the few elements of the original estate that will be retained. The garden is planned to be replanted and renamed the “Millennium Green.” 

Richard and Su Rogers's Wimbledon House Photographed by Iwan Baan

10:15 - 28 June, 2017
Richard and Su Rogers's Wimbledon House Photographed by Iwan Baan, Courtesy of the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Image © Iwan Baan
Courtesy of the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Image © Iwan Baan

Following extensive renovations led by Philip Gumuchdjian and landscape architect Todd Longstaffe-Gowan, 'Wimbledon House'—formerly known as the Rogers House or '22 Parkside'—has reopened as the Harvard GSD's primary residence and London venue for the Richard Rogers Fellowship.

Courtesy of the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Image © Iwan Baan Courtesy of the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Image © Iwan Baan Courtesy of the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Image © Iwan Baan Courtesy of the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Image © Iwan Baan + 16

Diébédo Francis Kéré's Serpentine Pavilion Photographed by Laurian Ghinitoiu

12:00 - 23 June, 2017
Diébédo Francis Kéré's Serpentine Pavilion Photographed by Laurian Ghinitoiu, © Laurian Ghinitoiu
© Laurian Ghinitoiu

Following the opening of the 2017 Serpentine Pavilion, designed this year by Diébédo Francis Kéré (Kéré Architecture), photographer Laurian Ghinitoiu has turned his lens to London. Designed to mimic a tree, or a canopy of trees, the wooden structure has been designed to fuse cultural references from Kéré's home town of Gando in Burkino Faso with more "experimental" construction techniques. His ambition is that the pavilion becomes a social condenser – "a symbol of storytelling and togetherness."

© Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu + 41