Almost sixty years after Wallace K. Harrison was invited to design the United Nations Secretariat Building in New York City, plans have been unveiled for another UN skyscraper designed by Fumihiko Maki which would “consolidate currently scattered operations into a single structure that would rise on the western portion of the Robert Moses Playground, on First Avenue between East 41st and 42nd streets.”
The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) has revealed more acceleration in the growth of design activity nationally. As a leading economic indicator of construction activity, the ABI reflects the approximate nine to twelve month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the August ABI score was 53.8, up from a mark of 52.7 in July. This score reflects an increase in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 63.0, down from the reading of 66.4 the previous month.
“It is fair to say that the design professions are in a recovery mode,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. “…but a key component to maintaining this momentum is the ability of businesses to obtain financing for real estate projects, and for a resolution to the federal government budget and debt ceiling impasse.”
Key August ABI highlights:
Following the news that Studio V Architecture has been commissioned to convert the 19th century Empire Stores, next to Brooklyn Bridge, into 380,000 square-feet of office, restaurant and commercial space, Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has unveiled designs for “a flowering meadow with seasonal grasses, a sprawling field and a triangular wooden viewing platform” close by.
Architects: Trahan Architects
Location: Natchitoches, LA, USA
President / Design Principal: Victor F. “Trey” Trahan, III FAIA
Project Architect: Brad McWhirter AIA
Design Team: Ed Gaskin AIA, Mark Hash, Michael McCune AIA
Project Team: Sean David, Blake Fisher, Erik Herrmann, David Merlin, Benjamin Rath, Judson Terry
Area: 28000.0 sqm
Photographs: Tim Hursley
After fifty years of neglect the Empire Stores, located next to the Brooklyn Bridge, are now the most coveted waterfront property in New York. Midtown Equity has partnered with Studio V Architecture to adaptively reuse the 19th-century coffee warehouse into 380,000 square-feet of office, restaurant and commercial space, highlighted by a Brooklyn-centric cultural museum. “After the Brooklyn Bridge,” says Joe Cayre, Chairman of Midtown Equities, “the Civil War era Empire Stores are the most iconic structures on the Brooklyn waterfront. As a Brooklyn native who raised my family in the borough, it is an honor for my firm to be chosen for the redevelopment of the Empire Stores.”
Learn more after the break…
On the twelfth anniversary of September 11th, we would like to share with you this incredible time-lapse capturing the progress of the One World Trade Center between October 2004 and September 2013. The 1,776 foot tall skyscraper, which is expected to be the tallest in Western Hemisphere, topped out earlier this year and is slated for completion in 2014.
André Balazs, CEO of André Balazs Properties, has been tapped by Port Authority officials to redevelop the historic, Eero Saarinen-designed TWA terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. Balazs will transform the terminal into the “Standard, Flight Center” hotel and conference center, equipped with food and beverage space, retail, a spa and fitness center, meeting facilities and a flight museum.
Freecell Architecture has been announced as winner of the urban design-build competition, PXSTL. Organized by the Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts and the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis, PXSTL challenged US artists, architects and designers to propose a small-scale intervention for a vacant lot in the St. Louis Grand Center cultural district that could possibly spark large-scale urban transformation.
Among 60 candidates and three shortlisted finalists, Freecell’s winning proposal “Lots” was selected for its “innovative design and approach to the space as a gathering catalyst, hosting social and cultural activities to bring focus on activities of people unifying a community.” The project intends on activating audience engagement by hosting a series of concerts, dance performances, community celebrations, film screenings, and art exhibitions.
Read on for more about “Lots”…
Location: 513 Church Street, George Washington National Forest, Clifton Forge, VA, USA
Professors In Charge: Marie Zawistowski, Keith Zawistowski
Student Team: Bethel Abate, Aiysha Alsane, Justin Dennis, Jennifer Leeds, Stephanie Mahoney, Stephen Perry, Amanda Schlichting, Claudia Siles, Samuel “Aaron” Williams, Ryan Hawkins, Catherine Ives, Anna Knowles-Bagwell, Michael Kretz, Fernanda Rosales, Katherine Schaffernoth, Daniel Vantresca, Bryana Warner
Photographs: Jeff Goldberg/ESTO