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Eastern Bloc Architecture: Scientific Superstructures

This article is part of "Eastern Bloc Architecture: 50 Buildings that Defined an Era", a collaborative series by The Calvert Journal and ArchDaily highlighting iconic architecture that had shaped the Eastern world. Every week both publications will be releasing a listing rounding up five Eastern Bloc projects of certain typology. Read on for your weekly dose: Scientific Superstructures.

Anastasia Elrouss Designs a Vertical Eco-Village in Beirut, a New Way to Inhabit the Built Environment

Anastasia Elrouss Architects has imagined the MM Residential Tower, a vertical eco-village in the fast-developing suburbs of Beirut, Lebanon. Labeled Urban Lung, the project, sitting on a 900-square-meter rectangular site, generates 14 stacked floor plates around a central and open planted core. The ground floor and basement level, rented by Warchee NGO, will encompass farming and carpentry workshops for women.

Vertical Eco-Village: Urban Lung of Beirut . Image Courtesy of Anastasia Elrouss Architects Vertical Eco-Village: Urban Lung of Beirut . Image Courtesy of Anastasia Elrouss Architects Vertical Eco-Village: Urban Lung of Beirut . Image Courtesy of Anastasia Elrouss Architects Vertical Eco-Village: Urban Lung of Beirut . Image Courtesy of Anastasia Elrouss Architects + 22

NACTO Releases Streets for Pandemic Response and Recovery in the Fight Against the COVID-19

The National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) has released guidelines to provide cities with strategies “to redesign and adapt their streets for new uses both during the COVID-19 crisis and in the recovery”. Streets for Pandemic Response and Recovery highlights the most updated street design approaches cities are using, around the world.

BIG Designs World's Most Sustainable Furniture Factory in Norway

Bjarke Ingels Group and Norwegian manufacturer Vestre have unveiled The Plus, a new project set to become the world’s most sustainable furniture factory. Sited in Magnor, Norway, the factory was envisioned as a village for a community dedicated to the clean, carbon neutral fabrication of urban and social furniture. The Plus aims to be a global destination for sustainable architecture and high-efficiency production.

The Plus. Image Courtesy of Lucian R The Plus. Image Courtesy of Lucian R The Plus. Image Courtesy of Lucian R The Plus. Image Courtesy of Lucian R + 23

How Light Mix in V-Ray 5 Helps Designers Visualize Architecture

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Using the new Light Mix in V-Ray 5, artists and designers can visualize ideas even faster and more effectively. Now, from just one single render, you have the power to create as many images as you can imagine, at a speed that simply wasn’t possible with earlier versions. 

Architecture Plagiarism: Are We Being Inspired or Are We Cheating?

There’s always an ongoing debate on whether some designs are stolen or “modified” to become original. Most people assume that if we post pictures of our designs online, we would be giving away our work and other designers and architects will eventually steal them. But should we really hide our designs from the public? Are plans and sections so sacred and innovative to the extent that architects are applying copyrights to them?

Kevin Hui and Andrew Maynard of Youtube’s Archimarathon chat about copying designs, how students and architects can learn from existing designs, and whether plagiarism exists in the field of architecture.

Symbiosis of Room and Nature: Solarlux

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With its moveable glass facades, German family-owned company Solarlux is blurring the lines between outside and in – seamlessly merging the outdoors with indoor living spaces.

Casa Orozco: Luis Barragán and José Clemente Orozco's Guadalajaran Masterpiece

© Lorena Darquea © David Lozano Díaz © Lorena Darquea © Lorena Darquea + 5

This article is a part of a collaboration with coolhuntermx.com. It was originally published under the title "Luis Barragán and José Clemente Orozco,The House They Built Together ", written and photograped by David Lozano Díaz in collaboration with Lorena Darquea.

There's a lot of discussion surrounding Casa Orozco as to who the real creator is —Luis Barragán or José Clemente Orozco. And even though we know that one of them was responsible for the architecture, the answer still remains unclear. Orozco returned to Mexico in 1934, by invitation from the Mexico City government, after a seven year stint in New York. Once he arrived, he was commissioned to paint a mural inside the Palacio de Bellas Artes. Afterwards, he received commissions from the Jalisco Government to paint a series of murals for three public buildings in Guadalajara.

White Arkitekter to Design One Kilometre Long Extension for a Park in Norway

White Arkitekter has won a competition to design a new beach park and sea bath in Bergen, Norway. The waterfront proposal entitled “True Blue” generates “a new meeting place where residents will be challenged to experience the water’s qualities throughout the year”. Inspired by water, the most tangible element in Bergen, the winning project creates a sustainable park, upon the competition’s brief.

Courtesy of White Arkitekter Courtesy of White Arkitekter Courtesy of White Arkitekter Courtesy of White Arkitekter + 8

Home Library Architecture: 63 Smart & Creative Bookcase Designs

Sharing your shelf is, in a way, sharing yourself. Every element —from the titles you choose to the way you organize them— says something about your personality and your interests. 

Stefano Boeri Wins International Competition to Design Largest Rehabilitation Center in Shenzhen, China

Stefano Boeri Architetti has won the international competition for the construction of the largest and most innovative Rehabilitation Centre in Shenzhen, China. With his Chinese office, SBA was selected by a jury composed of local and international figures such as Peter Cook and Sou Fujimoto. Planned to be built in the next three years, the project will put in place “a set of green terraces and overlapping spaces in a sustainable system combining nature, architecture and biodiversity and including internal gardens dedicated to rehabilitation”.

Courtesy of Stefano Boeri Architetti China Courtesy of Stefano Boeri Architetti China Courtesy of Stefano Boeri Architetti China Courtesy of Stefano Boeri Architetti China + 6

Studio Gang's Arkansas Arts Center Under Construction

Studio Gang and SCAPE's Arkansas Arts Center is currently under construction in MacArthur Park, Little Rock. The work is being realized through a public-private partnership, with a $31 million commitment from the City of Little Rock, funded through a hotel-tax revenue bond. The project will house the Arkansas Arts Center Foundation Collection, which includes 14,000 works of art from around the world.

Arkansas Art Center. Image Courtesy of Studio Gang and SCAPE Arkansas Art Center. Image Courtesy of Studio Gang Arkansas Art Center. Image Courtesy of Studio Gang Arkansas Art Center. Image Courtesy of Studio Gang and SCAPE + 5

Minimum Dimensions and Typical Layouts for Small Bathrooms

Having access to a bathroom is, above all, a factor of dignity. As basic as this fact may seem, the WHO (World Health Organization) estimates that 2 billion people worldwide do not have access to basic sanitation facilities, such as bathrooms or latrines. Such inadequate sanitation causes 432,000 deaths annually, mainly from diarrhea, in addition to being an aggravating factor for several neglected tropical diseases including intestinal worms, schistosomiasis, and trachoma. In 2010, the UN (United Nations) labeled sanitation a basic right, alongside access to drinking water.

Lina Bo Bardi and the Generosity of the Streets

Projects for public buildings and infrastructure must always ensure the best possible forms of access and connection with the surrounding streets, particularly regarding access routes for pedestrians. However, some architects have managed to overcome the pragmatic aspect of this connection between architecture and the streets, when designing projects that have a strong duty to provide public space, by using this bond as the core of the design concept.

Koichi Takada Architects Reveals Latest Design for L.A.'s Skyline

Koichi Takada has designed a 43-story mixed-use development, in downtown Los Angeles, inspired by “California’s natural beauty and iconic redwoods”. Hoping to create the healthiest place to live in L.A., the proposed building humanizes the concept of high-rise through the use of natural materials, vertical landscaping, engaging public elements, and creating a between artificial and natural environments.

The World's Tallest Hybrid Timber Tower is Under Construction in Sydney, Australia

The Atlassian Sydney Headquarters, the soon to be “world’s tallest hybrid timber building” is being built in Sydney, Australia. Designed by SHoP in partnership with BVN, the 40-story high tower will provide, once completed in 2025, a new and innovative space for technology giant Atlassian.

MuseLAB Wins Coronavirus Design Competition

MuseLAB has won the Coronavirus Design Competition hosted by GoArchitect. The competition's challenge was to design a way to help people stay healthy, both in body and mind. The competition was made to recognize that COVID-19 has affected billions of lives, of every nationality, if not physically than economically and mentally.

How Will Digitalization and Remote Construction Change our Habits as Architects?

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Architects don’t make buildings. Architects make drawings of buildings. But of course, someone has to make the building. The construction industry is one of the largest economic sectors and we all interact with the built environment on a daily basis, but the actual work of getting a building from drawing to structure has barely evolved over the decades. While the rest of the world has moved into Industry 4.0, the construction sector has not kept pace. Architecture has begun to embrace some digitalization. After all, not many of us work with mylar on drafting tables anymore. So with the architecture industry’s everlasting link to the construction industry, will the latter pick up some new technological tricks by association? And when it does, how will that change the role of the architect?

Cities Should Allow People to Shine

Feeling free and safe in the city. How many times have we felt fully free when walking through our neighbourhood, when returning home, when sitting in the park? Some urban spaces give us more autonomy than others. Some areas seem more comfortable and calm. But, to keep that calm, to what extent do we express ourselves and to what extent do we hold back? What safeguards do we take to feel as good as possible when inhabiting our environment?

The Upshot of Sidewalk Labs’ Canceled Toronto Project

In May, Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs announced that it would cancel its high-profile Quayside project because of “unprecedented economic uncertainty.” The statement marked the end of a three-year initiative to create a living, urban “testbed for emerging technologies, materials, and processes.”

Reversing the traditional order of city planning, Sidewalk Labs imagined building a new urban district on Toronto’s waterfront from the internet up, with sensors and other data collection infrastructure embedded in the fabric of a large city block. The ambitious development—with an area of 2.65 million square feet, including 1.78 million square feet of residential space—was to be built entirely from mass timber; indeed, the extensive use of modular cross-laminated timber (CLT) and glue-laminated timber (glulam) was a chief selling point of the design (by Heatherwick Studio and Snøhetta, using a kit-of-parts developed by Michael Green Architecture).

High Visibility: Glas Marte

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The new Saanersloch gondola lift in Gstaad is a static masterpiece – and with its specially designed and unique all-glass facade by Glas Marte, it has also reached the top of the world.

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