Mayors Challenge Finalists Announced

’s Mayors Challenge

Twenty from across the U.S. are competing for nine million dollars in grant money that could fund their innovative solution to some of the major urban challenges that face our communities today. These Top 20 finalists were selected from 305 teams, formed by mayors, architects and local professionals, representing a city of 30,000 or more residents that responded to Mayor Bloomberg’s Mayors Challenge with a bold idea that could potentially make our government more efficient, solve a serious problem, or improve city life.

The five boldest ideas with the greatest potential for impact will win funding as well as national and local recognition. The winning city will receive a $5,000,000 grand prize and four other cities will receive $1,000,000 to help implement their ideas.

The Top 20 finalists are…

HNTB’s winning concept for LA’s 6th Street Viaduct Replacement Project

winning proposal via Sixth Street Viaduct Replacement Project

In April, Mayor Villaraigosa and City Council Member Huizar announced an international design competition to redesign the historic, 80-year-old Sixth Street Bridge in . The decision to launch the competition came after engineers warned that the bridge was at risk of failing during a major earthquake due to a degenerative structural problem known as “concrete cancer”. After careful consideration and entertaining the idea of constructing a replica of the 1932 icon, the city committed to moving forward with a major redesign. In mid-October, the national infrastructure firm HNTB, along with team members Michael Maltzan Architecture and AC Martin Partners, were announced as winners of the international competition.

Continue reading to learn more…

Video: Googie Architecture, Part 1

Architecture, shared with us by Sunny & Mild Media, is part one of a series that encapsulates the futuristic design found prevalent in the post-war sprawl of during the 1950s. Popular among coffee shops, motels and gas stations, the ultramodern style originated from the Sunset Boulevard coffee shop, designed by John Lautner, named Googies.  A Googie building was a symbol that a business was with the times, which in turn brought traffic and attention to its doors. Form followed function, and it’s function was advertisement.

For more, read Googie Architecture: Futurism through Modernism.

The Matchbox House / Bureau for Architecture and Urbanism

Steve Maylone © Maylone Photography

Architects: Bureau for Architecture and Urbanism
Location: Ann Arbor,Michigan,
Design Team: Naseem Alizadeh
Landscape Architect: Tad Krear
Year: 2012
Structural Engineer: Cory Johnston
Mechanical Engineer: Matt Snider
Photographs: Steve Maylone © Maylone Photography

VIDEO: New World Symphony / Frank Gehry by Cristobal Palma

Since its opening in January 2011 we have presented two articles related to this project designed by , home for the New World Symphony founded by renowned american director Michael Tilson Thomas. Today we have this great video that Cristobal Palma just shared with us, for a better understanding of the spaces and surroundings.

You can check some more videos by  at ArchDaily:

Kengo Kuma lectures in San Diego and NYC this week!

Green Cast / Kengo Kuma & Associates

Tonight, Kengo Kuma will be lecturing at the Woodbury School of Architecture in at 6:30pm. Shortly following his Woodbury appearance, the Japanese architect will then make his way across the country to Columbia University’s GSAAP (Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation)Wood Auditorium in to present his lecture, Minimize: Small Architecture after 3/11, on Wednesday the 10th at 6:30pm. Both lectures are free and open to the public.

City OKs design of Amazon’s Seattle Headquarters

©

With a 3-2 vote, ’s Downtown Design Review Board has voted in favor of Amazon’s plans for a three-block, high-rise complex in the Denny Triangle. The board voted after conducting five, comprehensive meetings over the last six months to review Amazon’s evolving NBBJ-designed proposal. Although this design review approval is simply a recommendation to the city’s Department of Planning and Development, it is still a milestone for the ambitious project.

The five acre site, roughly located between Sixth Avenue, Blanchard Street and Westlake Avenue, is currently occupied by expansive parking lots, the Sixth Avenue Inn and the King Cat Theater. Continue after the break to learn more.

AIA Small Project Awards 2013 – Call for Entires

2012 Small Projects Award Recipient: SPECS Optical Façade, Minneapolis / Alchemy Architects © Geoffrey Warner and Scott Ervin

The Small Project Practitioners (SPP) Knowledge Community presents the ninth annual Small Project Award Program to recognize the work of small project practitioners and to promote excellence in small project design. This Award Program strives to raise public awareness of the value and design excellence that architects bring to all project types, including renovations and additions, no matter the limits of size and budget.

Award winning projects will be recognized in publications and electronic media, including the SPP Journal and website. Projects will also be displayed at the 2013 National Convention and Design Exposition. Select residential award winning projects will be included in Fine Homebuidling magazine’s annual awds issue, HOUSES, and on finehomebuilding.com.

Judging Criteria

Each entry will be judged for the success with which the project meets its individual program intent and requirements. Entries will be weighed individually, not in competition with each other. Criteria for judging will include the following:

  • The submission complies with all submission requirements
  • The project demonstrates exemplary skill in meeting program intent and requirements
  • The project achieves excellence in design

Award Categories

There are three built categories and one unbuilt category:

  • Category 1: A small project construction, object, work of environmental art or architectural design element up to $150,000.
  • Category 2: A small project construction, up to $1,500,000.
  • Category 3: A small project construction, object, work of environmental art, or architectural design under 5,000 SF constructed by the architect. The architect must have had a significant role in the construction, fabrication and/or installation of the work, in addition to being the designer.
  • Category 4: Unbuilt architectural designs under 5,000 SF for which there is no current intent to build, of all project types including purely theoretical, visionary projects, with or without a client.

Applicants may enter the same project in more than one category. The entry fee is on a per category basis (e.g. the same project entered in two categories will be charged two entry fees).

The Small Project Practitioners Knowledge Community encourages submissions of projects in all building types: commercial, retail, industrial, educational, public and private, as well as residential. In addition, projects may include fully completed new and renovations or elements of built projects. There is no limitation other than the quality of the final work. We invite the submission of projects accessible to people of all abilities. New construction and renovations are equally welcome.

Finally, the Small Project Practitioners Knowledge Community strongly encourages submissions from the many diverse Small Project Practitioner (SPP) members of the AIA and the profession.

Eligibility

  • Open to architects licensed in the United States.
  • Built projects completed after January 1, 2009.
  • Entry photography by the submitting architect is welcomed, but there is no restriction on professional photography.
  • Maximum of four entries per firm – (a single project may be entered in two different categories with applicable fees for each entry). Maximum of two unbuilt entries per firm.
  • No projects are permitted that have previously received a national AIA award.

Submissions

2013 Entries must be submitted before 4:59:59 p.m. Eastern Time on November 12, 2012.

The submission deadline date will be strictly observed; no exceptions will be made. No entry fee will be refunded for entries that are disqualified, late, or not completed. Payments and submissions will only be accepted online.

Notifications will be made to Award Recipients mid to late February 2013.

Please review the 2013 AIA Small Project Awards Walk Through and Concealed ID Forms before beginning your submission. When you are ready to submit, go to the Submission Website.

Fees

Built Projects (Categories 1, 2 and 3):

  • AIA members – $150 for each entry
  • Nonmembers – $300 for each entry

Unbuilt Designs (Category 4):

  • AIA members – $75 for each entry
  • Nonmembers – $150 for each entry

All entry fees are nonrefundable.

2013 Jury

  • Leonard Kady, AIA (Chair) – Leonard Kady Architecture + Design – New York, NY
  • Julie Beckman – KBAS – Philadelphia, PA
  • Christopher Herr, AIA – Studio H:T – Boulder, CO
  • Laura Kraft, AIA – Laura Kraft Architect – , WA
  • Rob Yagid – Fine Homebuilding magazine – Newtown, CT

Check out the recipients of the 2012 Small Project Awards here

Grace Farms unveils SANAA-designed ‘River’ Building

© SANAA

, a not-for‐profit charitable organization in , Connecticut, has submitted a proposal to the town’s Planning and Zoning Commission for a SANAA-designed, meandering structure dubbed the “River”. The project prioritizes the needs of the community by preserving the 75-acre Grace Farms property as a permanent offering of open space and providing an array of public amenities, such as a library, gymnasium and church.

“We are thrilled to be sharing SANAA’s wonderfully sensitive design with the members of the Planning and Zoning Commission and with the community we serve,” stated Sharon Prince, President of the Grace Farms Foundation. “Grace Farms is a place where people can walk their dog, read a book by the lake or simply relax in a beautiful natural setting. By blending so seamlessly into the landscape, the River enhances this experience, almost erasing the barrier between the spaces sheltered within and the natural world outside.”

If approved, the River will be SANAA’s first United States commission since receiving the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2010. Continue reading for the architects’ description.

AIA Commits to Make Design a Catalyst for Public Health

The American Institute of Architects () has announced a ten-year commitment to develop design and technology solutions for cities that address challenges faced on public health, sustainability, and resiliency to natural disasters. EVP and Chief Executive Officer Robert Ivy, FAIA, announced the Commitment to Action at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual Meeting, where more than 1,000 global leaders are gathering to address the theme, “Designing for Impact.”

“This commitment by the AIA represents an all-out effort to demonstrate the link between building design and the health of building occupants,” said Ivy. “And it will enable us to bring the force of design to bear in the public health arena and debate.”

Ground Zero Master Plan / Studio Daniel Libeskind

WTC Site Night, Silverstein Properties, New York © Silverstein Properties

With last year’s opening of the Memorial at Ground Zero and the near-completion of the World Trade Center One, Daniel Libeskind’s vision for the World Trade Center site is close to presenting the future of NYC’s downtown financial center, 11 years after the attacks. Studio Daniel Libeskind was selected to develop the master plan for the site in 2003, and since has been coordinating with NYC’s numerous agencies and individual architects to rebuild the site. The project, in Libeskind’s words, is a “healing of New York”, a “site of memory” and “a space to witness the resilience of America”.

Follow us after the break for more on the elements and progress of the master plan.

AIA Selects Four Projects for National Healthcare Design Awards

Massachusetts General Hospital – The Lunder Building; Boston /

The American Institute of Architects () Academy of Architecture for Health (AAH) has announced four recipients of the National Healthcare Design Awards program. The awards program highlights the “best of healthcare building design and healthcare design-oriented research” that exhibit “conceptual strengths that solve aesthetic, civic, urban, and social concerns as well as the requisite functional and sustainability concerns of a hospital”.

The AIA National Healthcare Design Award recipients are:

The fate of Neutra’s Cyclorama Center looks dismal

An old post card of the Cyclorama – Courtesy of Flickr user fauxto_digit

The battle over ’s mid-century Cyclorama Center is nearing an end. Located in the heart of the Gettysburg National Military Park, the concrete and glass cylindrical drum was designed by modernist architect Richard Neutra and completed in 1962 under the ambitious Mission 66 initiative aimed to improve visitor services at national parks.

Controversy surrounding the building’s fate started in 1999, when the National Park Service first announced plans to demolish it. This sparked a raging battle between 20th century architecture supporters and Civil War purists, ultimately leading to the federal court.

However, despite these relentless efforts, the structures fate appears to be dismal.

Asia Society Texas Center / Yoshio Taniguchi

© Paul Hester

Architect: Taniguchi and Associates
Location: HoustonTexasUnited States
Architect of Record: Kendall/Heaton Associates
Project Manager: Project Control
Contractor: W. S. Bellows Construction Corp.
Consultants: GBA Architecture, Ingenium Inc., CHPA Consulting Engineers, Walter P. Moore, Office of James Burnett, Fisher Marantz Stone, Minor Design Group, Theater Projects Consultants, Inc., Waterscape Consultants, Inc., Shen Milsom Wilke, CDC Curtain Wall Design and Consulting, Persohn/Hahn Associates, Ulrich Engineers, Inc.
Project Area: 3,716 sqm
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Hester & Hardaway

   

Venice Biennale 2012: Spontaneous Interventions / USA Pavilion

© Nico Saieh

The jury of the 2012 Venice Architecture Biennale has awarded the United States pavilion a “Special Mention” for it’s innovative installation, titled Spontaneous Interventions: Design Actions for the Common Good. Curated and commissioned by Cathy Lang Ho, along with David Van Der Leer and Ned Cramer, the exhibition presents 124 socially-minded urban interventions that have brought immediate improvements to the public realm.

Brooklyn-based practice Freecell collaborated closely with the Sausalito-based design studio M-A-D, led by Erik Adigard and Patricia McShane, to design a kinetic system of color-coded banners, weights and pulleys, that showcase each urban intervention. Learn more after the break.

Imagining the Lowline

Courtesy of and Dan Barasch

Mark your calendars – the Lowline is going public! After a great gallery exhibition and tons of international support, the Lowline founders are launching a public exhibition to showcase their innovative technological approach to creating the world’s first underground park on the Lower East Side of City. The full scale exhibition will take place in the Essex Market Building D, an abandoned warehouse just above the proposed Lowline Park, from September 15-27.

More after the break.

Community Board Approves SPURA Redevelopment Plan, What’s Next?

Courtesy of NYC EDC

is one of the many adopted acronyms used to describe City’s division of neighborhoods. But unlike SOHO, NOHO, or Tribeca, is actually the name of a development site in Lower Manhattan, the Seward Park Urban Renewal Area, to be exact. The history of the site is a story of politics, economics and social pressures. After fifty years of debates between community leaders, activists and designers, the City Planning Commission has given a proposed development plan the green light. That means that following a land-use review process called ULURP, a city council vote and the Mayor Bloomberg’s final approval, the site may finally transition from a street level parking lot into a mixed-use development full of retail stores, offices, community facilities, a new Essex Street market, a hotel, a park and 900 apartments that will occupy 1.65-million-square-feet.

Join us after the break to read more on the development and to see other alternative creative proposals that this site has inspired over the years.

AD Classics: Prince Home and Studio / Bart Prince

Courtesy of Bart Prince

Nestled in the suburbs of , are the otherworldly forms of Bart Prince’s Personal Residence and Studio. As home and work place for the architect the structure truly reflects Prince’s main design principle that form so closely follows function. This ideal leads to the relatively uncommon architecture produced by Bart Prince. More after the break.