Shortlist Announced for U.S. Embassy in Beirut

The Department of State’s Overseas Buildings Operations (OBO) has shortlisted six design teams for the new U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon. The project is part of OBO’s Excellence in Diplomatic Facilities initiative in which seeks to provide safe and functional facilities that represent the best in American architecture.

Although the thirty-nine firms who responded to the challenge all presented a “high level of design excellence, innovative site and landscape designs, and strong experience,” only these six practices will make it through to the second round:

J2 Residence / assemblageSTUDIO

© Bill Timmerman

Architects: assemblageSTUDIO
Location: , Nevada, USA
Area: 12,000 sqft
Year: 2011
Photographs: Bill Timmerman

6970+ Revitalization Project Competition Entry / Op.N

Courtesy of

Proposing a connective and activated public realm for the two blocks of Sixty Nine and Seventy in , this design by Op.N for the ‘SixtyNine-Seventy, The Spaces Between‘ competition focuses on three main strategies: connectivity, activation of open and residual spaces, and extension of use. While there are a number of formal connections to and from various parts of the site, a series of informal connection have also been created based on ease of movement and access, possessing an embedded intelligence which needs to be considered. More images and architects’ description after the break.

‘Redesigning Detroit: A New Vision for an Iconic Site’ Competition Entry / Various Architects

Courtesy of Chung Whan Park, Terry Park, Jeong Jun Song, Hyuntek Yoon, Kyung Jae Yu

The mission in the proposal, titled ‘The Grand Opening,’ for the Redesigning Detroit: A New Vision for an Iconic Site competition is to create a vision for a 24/7 timeless, vibrant and walk-able urban neighborhood in downtown with a catalytic impact on the retail activities of Woodward Avenue Corridor.  Designed by Chung Whan Park, Terry Park, Jeong Jun Song, Hyuntek Yoon and Kyung Jae Yu, The Grand Opening will connect the different contexts of the existing urban settings and bring every hour of excitement, crowd and memorable identity to the street life of downtown Detroit. More images and architects’ description after the break.

‘FitNation’ Exhibition

Red Swing Project / University of Texas at Austin Architecture Students / © Blake Gordon

From Brooklyn to the Bronx, from San Antonio to Cincinnati, communities and organizations across the are tackling heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and other chronic diseases with a dose of powerful medicine: active design. Organized by AIA New York, with the Center for Architecture, their groundbreaking ‘FitNation‘ exhibition. brings together for the first time 33 projects in 15 states and the District of Columbia that showcase the ways design, policy, and grassroots strategies are promoting physical activity as part of daily life. The event began this week and concludes on August 8. More images and information on the exhibition after the break.

Facades+ Performance Workshop

Courtesy of Mode Lab

Presented by The Architect’s Newspaper and enclos, Mode Lab recently announced their upcoming Facades+ Performance Symposium in taking place July11-12. The event consists of hands-on instruction by industry experts in a small, one-on-one, classroom setting. These workshops will provide professionals and academics with the skills and knowledge to work with cutting edge technologies in a fast-paced and intensive environment. The workshop will explore the use of Grasshopper, Firefly and Arduino as creative and technical tools in the design, simulation and prototyping of intelligent building skins. For more information, please visit here.

Manhattan Court Residence / Hanna Gabriel Wells Architects

© Larry Stanley

Architects: Hanna Gabriel Wells Architects
Location: , , USA
Design Team: James Gabriel, Chris Johns, Adrienne Gabriel
Area: 4,320 sqft
Year: 2009
Photographs: Larry Stanley

‘Reimagining Lincoln Center and the High Line’ Film Screening

Taking place this Thursday, June 20th, at 7:00pm EST, Van Alen Books welcomes Diller Scofidio + Renfro for a film screening of ’Reimagining Lincoln Center and the High Line.’ The 54-minute documentary offers insights into the firm’s history, completed projects, and unique process of re-imagining the public identities of two major urban spaces. The film includes commentary from the architects as well as interviews with commissioner Amanda Burden, as well as several critics and theorists. Before the film, Liz Diller and Ric Scofidio will join directors Muffie Dunn and Tom Piper for a conversation about their work, moderated by VAI executive director David Van der Leer. More more information on the event, please visit here.

NYC’s Plan to Mitigate Future Storms

East River Blueway Plan proposed by WXY Studios provides a natural waterfront along the existing and vulnerable FDR in ’s Lower East Side

Immediately after Hurricane Sandy hit the North American Eastern seaboard last October, City embarked on a debate to find ways in which the city could protect itself from future storms that climate scientists predict will escalate in frequency.  Engineers, architects, scientists from myriad disciplines came up with internationally inspired proposals, including sea walls, floating barrier islands, reefs and wetlands, to apply to this particular application. Diverse in scope, the ideas have gone through the ringer of feasibility and have left many wondering if we should we build to defend or build to adapt.

On Tuesday, NYC Mayor Bloomberg announced a plan that includes $20 billion worth of both:  a proposal of removable flood walls, levees, gates and other defenses that would be implemented with adaptive measures, such as marshes, along with the extensive flood-proofing of homes and hospitals.  

What does this plan entail and what can we imagine for the future of NYC? Find out after the break.

Pool Pavilion / GLUCK+

© Paul Warchol

Architects: GLUCK+
Location: Lake George, , USA
Project Team: Shannon Bambenek, Richard Bednarczyk, John D’Agnone, Peter L. Gluck, Charlie Kaplan, Eric Schaefer, Robert Wall, Douglas Weibel
Year: 2009
Photographs: Paul Warchol, Amy Barkow, Erik Freeland

GLASS Residential Tower Proposal / Terra Group + Rene Gonzalez Architect

© Michael Klausmeier

Terra Group + Rene Gonzalez Architect recently unveiled their design for GLASS, a new residential tower composed of 10 full-floor units located at 120 Ocean Drive in Miami Beach. The 18-story, all-glass building is located in the South of Fifth neighborhood, which has become, over the past decade, one of the most expensive destinations for luxury high-rise living in Miami Beach. Delicate and sensorial, the design of GLASS is a considered a response to its setting in Miami Beach, specifically intended to allow one to experience the surrounding natural landscape. More images and architects’ description after the break.

2013 Burnham Prize Competition Winners Announced

1st place ‘Form vs. Uniform: Generative BRT Stations’ / Courtesy of Hesam T. Rostami and Bahareh Atash

Three cutting edge designs were just selected as the winners of the 2013 Burnham Prize competition, organized by the Chicago Architectural Club and Chicago Architecture Foundation, in partnership with the Chicago Department of Transportation, the Chicago Transit Authority, and the Chicago Bus Rapid Transit Steering Committee. Titled, ‘NEXT STOP: Designing Chicago BRT Stations,’ the competition asked participants to integrate innovative and compelling transportation design into Chicago’s urban fabric. Awarded the first prize was the ’Form vs. Uniform: Generative Chicago BRT Stations’ proposal by designers Hesam T. Rostami and Bahareh Atash. More images and information on the winning entries after the break.

‘POP: Protocols, Obsessions, Positions.’ Exhibition

Taking place at the Storefront for Art and Architecture in from June 19 – July 20, the ’POP: Protocols, Obsessions, Positions.‘ exhibition will investigate what constitutes a position in architecture today and how that might be generated through the architect’s drawing. The exhibition presents 30 original drawings by 30 architects of the Storefront gallery space at 97 Kenmare Street that address both ends of the architectural drawing spectrum, understanding its codes and protocols and deploying the personal obsession of each architect in the articulation of a position now. For more information, please visit here.

Aurea Residence / Chris Pardo Design: Elemental Architecture

© Dale Tu

Architects: Chris Pardo Design: Elemental Architecture
Location: , WA, USA
General Contractor: Delen Construction Services Inc
Artwork: Cassandria Blackmore
Engineering: LFD Structural Engineering
Area: 3,300 sq ft
Year: 2013
Photographs: Dale Tu

Exhibiting in New York in the Air: Alberto Campo Baeza Exhibition

Courtesy of

Exhibited at the American Academy of Arts and Letters in until this month, the work of Alberto Campo Baeza is on display to celebrate the awarding of the Arnold W. Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture 2013. In a spare white quadrangular room in the main building and with only natural light from above, 24 white panels appear floating over the walls, without touching or marking them. It is an exhibition that is very sui generis, it is an Exhibition in the air; it is an exhibition that is very Campo Baeza. More information on the exhibition after the break.

Elements Residence / William Kaven Architecture

© Daniel Kaven

Architects: William Kaven Architecture
Location: , Oregon, USA
Project Team: Daniel Kaven and Trevor William Lewis
Area: 1,831 sqft
Year: 2013
Photographs: Daniel Kaven

280 Freeway Competition

Courtesy of and Design + the Seed Fund

This past spring, Mayor Ed Lee announced an exploration of the potential of removing Highway 280 north of 16th Street in . Presented by the Center for Architecture and Design + the Seed Fund, and co-sponsored by AIA San Francisco, the 280 Freeway Competition asks entrants to create hypothetical project designs for space in and around Highway 280. Open to architects, designers, planners, students, artists, landscape architects, and academics, participants are welcome to submit concepts that explore any aspect of the transformative opportunities introduced by the freeway removal. Entry is free, and up to $10,000 in prizes will be awarded. The registration and submission deadline is July 31. For more information, please visit here.

Boltwood Place / Holst Architecture

© Christian Phillips

Architects: Holst Architecture
Location: 49 Boltwood Walk, , MA 01002, USA
Contractor: DEW Construction
Structural Engineer: LLC
Investors: Archipelago Investments
Area: 18500.0 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Christian Phillips