Minneapolis will become the first major U.S. city to end single-family home zoning. City Council passed Minneapolis 2040, a plan to permit three-family homes in the city’s residential neighborhoods. This significant zoning change will also allow high-density buildings along transit corridors and abolish parking minimums for all new construction. Hoping to combat high housing costs, segregation and sprawl, the plan is set to become a precedent for cities across the United States.
Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects has broken ground on its first U.S. project, a mixed-use tower and associated masterplan in Detroit, Michigan. “Monroe Blocks” will stitch together the heart of one of America’s most storied cities with a mix of modern office space, residential units, restaurants, retail, and outdoor public areas.
The 12,500-square-meter site in Detroit’s Campus Martius Park, vacant for a generation, will be activated by 4,800 square meters of outdoor space, with the design team drawing on historical influences for the form and materiality of the new masterplan.
Italian activists RebelArchitette and VOW Architects, led by Louise Braverman, Caroline James, Arielle Assouline-Lichten and Francesca Perani, have launched a petition seeking equal recognition for Doriana Fuksas in the Lifetime Achievement Award recently given to her fellow partner and Director of Studio Fuksas, Massimiliano Fuksas.
The petition, signed by over 80 supporters on the first day of the launch, includes an open letter to INARCH (Istituto Nazionale di Architettura) in Rome, Italy, and has attracted the support of notable names such as Massimiliano Fuksas, Denise Scott Brown, Rem Koolhaas, Bjarke Ingels, Paola Antonelli, Beatriz Colomina, Gisue Hariri, and Toshiko Mori.
Either as singular outcroppings or as part of a bustling center, skyscrapers are neck-craning icons across major city centers in the world. A modern trope of extreme success and wealth, the skyscraper has become an architectural symbol for vibrant urban hubs and commercial powerhouses dominating cities like New York, Dubai, and Singapore.
While skyscrapers are omnipresent, 2018 introduced new approaches, technologies, and locations to the high-rise typology. From variations in materiality to form, designs for towers have started to address aspects beyond simply efficiency and height, proposing new ways for the repetitive form to bring unique qualities to city skylines. Below, a few examples of proposals and trends from 2018 that showcase the innovative ideas at work:
Perkins + Will have revealed a design for an open-air museum along the Crenshaw light-rail line in Los Angeles. Dubbed Destination Crenshaw, the project will run 1.1 miles and feature outdoor art and cultural spaces that celebrate black thinkers, activists, and performers of Los Angeles. Featuring works of public art as well as streetscape upgrades by Studio-MLA, the design was conceived as a response to Metro’s decision to put a section of the Crenshaw/LAX Line at ground level.
The government of Moscow has begun developing an existing district in the city to test nearly 30 new ‘smart’ technologies for urban development. Home to over 8,000 people, the district is testing ideas on smart lighting, smart waste management, and smart heating. The city intends to evaluate what impact technologies bring to residents and adjust its urban renewal plan once the pilot is complete.
Laka has published the results of the 2018 edition of their annual Architecture that Reacts competition, focusing on “architectural, design, or technological solutions that are capable of dynamic interaction with their surroundings.” This year saw 200 participants from more than 30 countries submit 130 designs, following an interdisciplinary approach reaching beyond typical building solutions.
This year’s winners hailed from the USA and Austria, confronting issues such as climate change, ubiquitous computation, and new ways of perceiving space in a machine-driven future. Below, we have rounded up the winners, special recognitions, and honorable mentions from the 2018 edition. For more information on the competition, and previous results, visit the official website here.
Half a century after the new suburban tract home was the dream of many a young American family, refurbished properties are gaining in popularity. This trend extends beyond North America, with exciting renovations of existing structures popping up all over the world, from Belgium to Kenya to China. The attraction to this typology likely lies in its multiplicity; renovations are both new and old, historic and forward-looking, generative and sustainable.
Nowhere is this trend more visible and popular than in housing, where the transformation is often led by the owners themselves. Loosely grouped under terms like “fixer-upper” and “adaptive reuse,” these projects begin with just the structural skeletons and the building’s history. At the personal scale, renovation/refurbishment is an opportunity to bring a part of yourself to your home - but do these small projects together have the potential to turn around a housing crisis?
Anthony Saroufim Captures the Skeletal Materiality of Santiago Calatrava's City of Arts and Sciences
The architectural and engineering feats of Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava can be admired around the world, but his City of Arts and Sciences, designed alongside Felix Candela, has remained a modern architectural marvel. Like many international visitors, Lebanese photographer Anthony Saroufim found himself inherently attracted to the highly publicized building complex with a specific, tailored angle - unraveling the relationship between the built reality and the people interacting with it.
New details of Google's North Bayshore campus have been revealed. The latest scheme includes a combination of office, retail, public and residential space. Located in North Bayshore, California, the revised plan focuses on the site's natural environment and affordable housing.
Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (KPF) has unveiled details of Huamu Lot 10 in Shanghai. The three-tower scheme, totaling 279,000 square meters, is dedicated to commercial offices and a future museum, positioned around a central grand plaza.
Described as a “new form of participatory urbanism,” the scheme has been designed to accommodate large-scale artwork in a public setting, thus activating the central plaza as a cultural hub.
Labeled as "vandalism" and "murder" of an icon of postmodernism, Oslo-based firm Snøhetta's redesign proposal for Phillip Johnson and John Burgee's AT&T Headquarters was received with instantaneous backlash across the architectural community last year. Architect Robert A. M. Stern, marched alongside a protest outside 550 Madison Avenue, and even critic Norman Foster, who never claimed to have any sympathy for the postmodern movement, still vocalized his sentiments that "[the building] is an important part of our heritage and should be respected as such."
A rejection of the bland and cold functionality of Midtown's crystal skyscrapers, the AT&T building was intended to encourage a more playful approach architecture in the corporate world; the crazy socks beneath a three-piece suit. It was not without controversy. Upon its completion, the building was derided for its decorative and outsized pediment and occasionally dark interior spaces. Indeed, the building's arched entry spaces were among the only architectural elements to be met with praise from both critics and the public.
The Zaha Hadid Virtual Reality Group has published details of Project Correl, a collaborative experiment to test the potential of virtual reality as a tool for design. The experiment is currently on display in the University Contemporary Art Museum (MUAC) in Mexico City, where it forms part of Zaha Hadid Architects’ “Design As Second Nature” exhibition.
In the exhibition, visitors have the chance to engage with Project Correl in real time, transported to a virtual environment to collaborate with each other on an ever-evolving structure. The design will be periodically captured and exhibited in the gallery as scaled 3D printed models to further demonstrate the design process encouraged by Correl.
With its intricate ornamentation and complex ribbed vaulting, Gothic architecture introduced a slenderness and exuberance that was not seen before in medieval Europe. Epitomized by pointed arches, flying buttresses, and tall spires, Gothic structures were easily identifiable as they reached new heights not previously achievable, creating enigmatic interior atmospheres.
Several centuries later, a new appreciation for Victorian-era architecture was reborn in the United States with the Gothic Revival movement most famously depicted by Chicago's Tribune Tower. A series of computer-graphics (CG) renderings done by Angie's List reinterpret some of America's iconic architecture from the 20th century to mirror buildings from the Middle Ages. View the republished content from Angie's List complete with each building's informative descriptions below.
Starting preparation from June 2017, Ban Xue Gang High-Tech Zone Core Area Urban Quality Improvement International Design Competition has generated 8 superior plans of 4 competition programs initially on May 2018.
This competition is an important measure to improve the quality of Ban Xue Gang High-Tech city in the future, not only requiring the efforts of the government and professionals, but also the support and participation of the society and the public. The organizer has widely collected opinions and suggestions of the public and relevant government departments on the 8 shortlisted plans by the online questionnaire and convening consultation meetings. And the calibration meeting was held on October 31, 2018, and officially confirmed the first and second winners of each competition program. The results of the competition and related matters are announced as follows:
The NYC Department of Sanitation, Van Alen Institute, and the Industrial Designers Society of America / American Institute of Architects New York have announced the three finalists in their BetterBin competition. The competition offered designers an opportunity to reimagine New York City’s iconic green wire litter basket. The three finalist design teams are Group Project (Colin P. Kelly), IONDESIGN GmbH Berlin, and Smart Design. Each team will now produce 12 full-size prototypes that will be tested in New York City neighborhoods in summer 2019.
Stefano Boeri has used his guest speech at the New York Times Cities of Tomorrow forum to focus on the role that green and urban forests can have in improving the quality of life and air in cities around the world. Speaking at the event in New Orleans, the acclaimed architect highlighted the impact of carbon emissions produced by buildings, while also stressing the potential for architects to use the built environment as a vehicle for positive social and environmental change.
Drawing from experiences such as the Tirana 2030 masterplan and the Bosco Verticale in Milan, Boeri suggested that “cities have the resources and the potential to become protagonists of a radical change aimed at countering the dramatic effects [of carbon emissions] becoming greener, healthier, and more integrated.”
The Fundació Mies van der Rohe and European Commission have revealed the 383 projects nominated for the 2019 European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award. The projects, which hail from 38 countries across the European Continent represent a wide range of typologies and office types. Of the countries included, the most projects come are located in Spain and Belgium (27 and 21 nominees, respectively.) London, home to 12 nominees, boasts the most nominated projects of any single city followed by Vilnius (9) and Paris (8).
Studio Fuksas has won the competition to design the new Gelendzhik Airport in Gelendzhik, Russia. Gelendzhik is considered the third most popular resort city on the Black Sea coast. Prioritizing the landscape and an interior garden of local pine trees, the project is set to become the new gateway into the city. Inspired by the flight of birds when they change direction, the airport was made to be a new landmark for Gelendzhik.
Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) has announced the six recipients of the 2019 cycle of the six recipients of their Richard Rogers Fellowship program. Inspired by Lord Richard Rogers’ “commitment to cross-disciplinary investigation and engagement,” the Fellowship established last year to support individuals “whose research will be enhanced by access to London’s extraordinary institutions, libraries, practices, professionals, and other unique resources.”
The 2019 winners were chosen from a pool of more than 140 applicants hailing from around the world. As in previous years, the fellowship allows the winners to spend a three-and-a-half month residency at the Rogers' Wimbledon House in London. The recipients also receive funding to cover their travel to London and $100,000 cash.
Next year New York's iconic High Line will open a new public space for art designed by James Corner Field Operations and Diller Scofidio + Renfro, with artwork by Simone Leigh. The public space will be the newest section of the elevated park dedicated to a rotating series of contemporary art commissions. The first art project in the space will be Brick House, a sixteen-foot-tall bronze bust of a black woman by Brooklyn’s Simone Leigh.
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The Dutch pavilion for Dubai EXPO 2020 has been unveiled, designed by a consortium, made up of Expomobilia, Kossmann.dejong, V8 Architects and Witteveen+Bos. The scheme has been designed “as a closed-loop climate system in which private and business visitors will enjoy an intense sensorial experience.”
Based on the Netherland’s chosen theme of “uniting water, energy, and food” the pavilion will be built using a construction method prioritizing closed-loop circularity, local materials, and a post-use recyclable agenda.
Russian practice Kleinewelt Architekten have designed a mixed-use housing block for Moscow that features a carved stone-relief facade. Inspired by historic Russian chambers and Italian palazzos, the project combines a residential building with cultural spaces and social care functions. Called Allegoria Mosca, the design draws upon the site's history and features an open-air art space, conference and lecture halls, as well as a transformable exhibition hall.