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Collin Abdallah

A recent graduate of the University of Oklahoma College of Architecture, Collin is currently living and working in Austin, TX.

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The Trailblazing Women Architects of Socialist Yugoslavia

14:00 - 22 July, 2018
The architect Svetlana Kana Radević’s design for the Hotel Podgorica (1967) in the Montenegrin capital could be described as an example of Brutalism.. Image © Valentin Jeck, 2016, commissioned by the Museum of Modern Art
The architect Svetlana Kana Radević’s design for the Hotel Podgorica (1967) in the Montenegrin capital could be described as an example of Brutalism.. Image © Valentin Jeck, 2016, commissioned by the Museum of Modern Art

The topic of diversity in architecture has remained a mainstream issue in recent years—however, a recent article from Metropolis Magazine offers an account that is nevertheless surprising: a celebration of the unique contributions of women architects in the former socialist state of Yugoslavia. According to the essay, the highlighted women made their mark on the history of Yugoslavia "in spite of, not through the dismantling of, both the region’s and the profession’s male-dominated cultures."

This Proposed Music Center Honors the Unique Birthplace of Polish Composer Frédéric Chopin

08:00 - 20 July, 2018
This Proposed Music Center Honors the Unique Birthplace of Polish Composer Frédéric Chopin, © ELEMENT
© ELEMENT

Located in a small village in Poland, this proposed music center honors the birthplace of famous Polish composer and pianist, Frédéric Chopin. Designed by ELEMENT as a part of an international competition, the Chopin Music Center captures the picturesque landscape of endless forests through "leisure and relaxation."

The Center integrates with the park through window views of Frédéric Chopin's birth house and the surrounding landscape. The proposed international music center utilizes a combination of natural materials and glazing to create a seamless connection with its site. The existing park can be reached by pathways and bridges near the building, prompting visitors to experience the outdoor area.

© ELEMENT © ELEMENT © ELEMENT © ELEMENT + 25

These Alabama Architecture Students are Designing and Building Low-Cost Homes for Rural America

06:00 - 18 July, 2018
© Timothy Hursley
© Timothy Hursley

Rural Studio, a student-centered design/build program at Auburn University’s College of Architecture, Design and Construction, has announced a collaboration with the mortgage loan company Fannie Mae to support the school’s 20K Initiative. This initiative continues to contribute to the development of "beautiful, healthy and resilient houses that afford financially vulnerable homeowners the ability to live in dignity, security and well within their means."

As a means to address the shortage of affordable housing in the U.S., the research produced from this collaboration with Fannie Mae is being shared with educational institutions industry groups. Auburn University is also providing funding for the initiative through a grant to "further strengthen the collaboration with Fannie Mae, as well as support the development of additional stakeholder collaborations."

© Timothy Hursley © Timothy Hursley © Timothy Hursley Courtesy of Auburn University Rural Studio + 7

Jeanne Gang Cut the Wage Gap at Studio Gang and Is Challenging Others to Follow Suit

08:00 - 16 July, 2018
Jeanne Gang Cut the Wage Gap at Studio Gang and Is Challenging Others to Follow Suit, © <a href='https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeanne_Gang#/media/File:Jeanne_Gang.jpg'>Wikimedia user Kramesarah</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/'>CC BY-SA 4.0</a>
© Wikimedia user Kramesarah licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Studio Gang founder Jeanne Gang has long been an advocate for change within the architecture field. Her studio's designs push boundaries all over the world, but Gang has recently used her firm to transform architectural practice in a different way—attacking the gender wage gap.

In a recent article from Fast Company, Gang writes about "discrimination and prejudice" throughout the US, but more specifically in the field of architecture.

Read on for more about how she closed the gender wage gap at her firm and is calling on other architecture firms to do the same.

New Pavilion in Rotterdam's Leuvehaven Port Brings High-Tech Design to a Historical Context

08:00 - 14 July, 2018
New Pavilion in Rotterdam's Leuvehaven Port Brings High-Tech Design to a Historical Context, Render. Image Courtesy of MoederscheimMoonen Architects
Render. Image Courtesy of MoederscheimMoonen Architects

A new public pavilion from MoedersheimMoonen Architects is set to be built in the old 'Leuvehaven' port in Rotterdam. Located near the Erasmus Bridge, the pavilion intends to bring new life to the historic port of Rotterdam. The municipality of Rotterdam is also set to invest in a bustling residential climate, with this new pavilion housing multiple programs that will contribute to a "lively" and "greener" Maritime District.

The building will replace three existing pavilions, providing a new perspective for visitors to the Leuvehaven. Much of the structure and foundation from the existing buildings are reused in the new design, promoting sustainability, honoring the present conditions of the site, and bringing high-tech design elements to the historical context.

The various programs for the Pavilion will include "the Port Information Point of the Port of Rotterdam, two publicly accessible workshops from the Maritime Museum Rotterdam and two catering establishments with terraces by the water," with the surrounding exteriors space also to be renewed in phases.

Render. Image Courtesy of MoederscheimMoonen Architects Render. Image Courtesy of MoederscheimMoonen Architects Render. Image Courtesy of MoederscheimMoonen Architects Render. Image Courtesy of MoederscheimMoonen Architects + 11

This Public Transit Series Celebrates Moscow's Contemporary Metro Stations

06:00 - 12 July, 2018
This Public Transit Series Celebrates Moscow's Contemporary Metro Stations , © Alexei Narodizkii for Blue Crow Media
© Alexei Narodizkii for Blue Crow Media

Beautifully integrating graphic design and architecture, the newest release from Blue Crow Media's transit series recognizes a selection of the most unique public transit stations in Moscow. Moscow Metro Architecture & Design, the second installment in the series, was curated by architectural historian Nikolai Vassiliev with photography by Alexei Narodizkii. It features the most unique and influential examples of architecture and decoration across what is widely considered to be "the most impressive network of stations in the world."

© Alexei Narodizkii for Blue Crow Media © Alexei Narodizkii for Blue Crow Media © Alexei Narodizkii for Blue Crow Media © Alexei Narodizkii for Blue Crow Media + 10

MIT Students Team With Nonprofit to Flip a Prison Into an Agricultural Community Center

08:00 - 11 July, 2018
MIT Students Team With Nonprofit to Flip a Prison Into an Agricultural Community Center, The entrance of the museum and conference space is lively with greenery and activity. The proposed design includes the addition of a rooftop greenhouse, as well as enlarging existing windows to brighten the interiors. Image Courtesy of Group Project
The entrance of the museum and conference space is lively with greenery and activity. The proposed design includes the addition of a rooftop greenhouse, as well as enlarging existing windows to brighten the interiors. Image Courtesy of Group Project

Group Project, a student group from MIT, is helping GrowingChange, a non-profit that works with previously incarcerated youth, to transform an old North Carolina prison into an agricultural community center. GrowingChange looks to take advantage of the small, decommissioned prisons scattered throughout the state's landscape. They see these sites as "places where communities can work together to provide clinical support, education, and vocational training as a means to divert youth from the criminal justice" system. 

Read on for more about how prison flipping intends to "counter a legacy of incarceration."

Prison buildings are inherently inward facing. A new porch next to the community kitchen reclaims outdoor space for eating and lounging. Additional porches will be used throughout the site to encourage a more outward facing campus vibe. Image Courtesy of Group Project The upper platform offers a larger and higher space with views over the whole site. Operable wire mesh barriers within the large square openings provide safety while still allowing each of the walls to be used for rappelling. Image Courtesy of Group Project A colorful illustration showing different type of planting throughout the Growing Change campus. These plantings are organized to create a range of spaces—from an intimate and enclosed space for bonfires to the grand entrance leading to the exhibition space. Edible gardens are also planned throughout the campus. Image Courtesy of Group Project Large glass openings connect the exterior courtyard to the Kitchen—the heart of the campus—and invite visitors inside to watch chefs prepare healthy food, using ingredients grown on the GrowingChange campus. Image Courtesy of Group Project + 9

MoMA to Host Exhibit Celebrating the Radical Brutalist Architecture of Socialist Yugoslavia

08:00 - 6 July, 2018
MoMA to Host Exhibit Celebrating the Radical Brutalist Architecture of Socialist Yugoslavia, Berislav Šerbetić and Vojin Bakić. Monument to the Uprising of the People of Kordun and Banija. 1979–81. Petrova Gora, Croatia. Exterior view. Photo: Valentin Jeck, commissioned by The Museum of Modern Art, 2016
Berislav Šerbetić and Vojin Bakić. Monument to the Uprising of the People of Kordun and Banija. 1979–81. Petrova Gora, Croatia. Exterior view. Photo: Valentin Jeck, commissioned by The Museum of Modern Art, 2016

The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is set to open a new exhibition exploring the architecture of the former country of YugoslaviaToward a Concrete Utopia: Architecture in Yugoslavia, 1948–1980 will be the first exhibition in the United States to honor the peculiar architecture of the former socialist nation.

More than 400 drawings, models, photographs, and film reels culled from an array of municipal archives, family-held collections, and museums across the region will be presented to an international audience for the first time. Toward a Concrete Utopia will feature works by many of Yugoslavia's leading architects. It will explore "large-scale urbanization, technological experimentation and its application in everyday life, consumerism, monuments and memorialization, and the global reach of Yugoslav architecture."

Read on for more about the exhibition and Yugoslav brutalism.

 Svetlana Kana Radević. Podgorica Hotel. 1964–67. Podgorica, Montenegro. Exterior view of the balconies. Photo: Valentin Jeck, commissioned by The Museum of Modern Art, 2016 odrag Živković and Đorđe Zloković. Monument to the Battle of the Sutjeska. 1965–71, Tjentište, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Photo: Valentin Jeck, commissioned by The Museum of Modern Art, 2016  Vjenceslav Richter. Yugoslav Pavilion at Expo 58. 1958. Brussels, Belgium. Archive of Yugoslavia Andrija Mutnjaković. National and University Library of Kosovo. 1971–82. Prishtina, Kosovo. Exterior view. Photo: Valentin Jeck, commissioned by the Museum of Modern Art, 2016 + 15

CTBUH Announces the Initial List of Speakers for the 2018 Middle East Conference on "Polycentric Cities"

16:50 - 5 July, 2018
CTBUH Announces the Initial List of Speakers for the 2018 Middle East Conference on "Polycentric Cities", Creative Commons public domain
Creative Commons public domain

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) has named the initial list of speakers for the 2018 Middle East ConferencePolycentric Cities: The Future of Vertical Urbanism. The list features men and women from some of the most influential businesses in the industry, such as HOK, Safdie ArchitectsKohn Pederson Fox, Gensler, Perkins+WillSOM and many more.

The conference will highlight a wide array of subjects and disciplines related to the conference theme, as well as other hot topics in the industry, including smart technologies, modular construction3D-printing buildings, net-zero skyscrapers and much more.

Read on for more about Polycentric Cities and the initial list of speakers.

This Instagram Celebrates a Unique Style of Architectural Illustration

08:00 - 3 July, 2018
via Zean Macfarlane (@zeanmacfarlane)
via Zean Macfarlane (@zeanmacfarlane)

Instagram and social media are fundamentally changing the way we design in the 21st century. There is an inspirational component to the content we see and cite on the internet, but beyond the pretty pictures lies an opportunity for growth and learning. Zean Macfarlane (@zeanmacfarlane) has found his niche on Instagram somewhere in the middle. The "daily architecture" posts feature process sketches, articulated elevations, and graphic design; but the fun doesn't stop there.

Macfarlane's account also includes a link to tutorial ebooks where you can learn his unique graphic style and begin to apply the effects and techniques into your own drawings. The entire grid of posts acts as a digital artboard, rich with playful forms and careful composition. See for yourself why he has amassed a following of nearly 50k people.

 You can see more of Zean's work after the break. 

Chicago Architecture Foundation's New Home, the Chicago Architecture Center, to Open in Late August

14:00 - 30 June, 2018
Chicago Architecture Foundation's New Home, the Chicago Architecture Center, to Open in Late August, Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Foundation
Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Foundation

The Chicago Architecture Foundation (CAF) has announced the opening date for their new home, the Chicago Architecture Center (CAC). Set to open August 31 of this year, the CAC will be the "home to everything architecture in Chicago." The 20,000-square-foot structure is located at 111 East Wacker Drive, just above the dock for the River Cruise offered by the CAF.

Lynn Osmond, the CAF's president and CEO, said of the new Center, "We can't wait for people to visit and experience how Chicago architects have influenced the world through their innovation and vision. We've engineered a stimulating and immersive space where visitors can have fun discovering Chicago's groundbreaking architecture and appreciate its profound impact on the world."

Designed by Chicago-based firm Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG), the CAC will feature custom spaces designed for education, tour orientation, and other public programs, as well as a store and interactive exhibits. 

Read on for more about the Chicago Architecture Center and its unique design experience.

Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Foundation Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Foundation Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Foundation Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Foundation + 7

This Crowdsourced and Crowdfunded Pavilion in Ukraine Embodies the Collaborative Spirit

04:00 - 30 June, 2018
This Crowdsourced and Crowdfunded Pavilion in Ukraine Embodies the Collaborative Spirit, © Alexandr Burlaka
© Alexandr Burlaka

In Dnipro, Ukraine, sits a unique multi-purpose pavilion rich with historical roots and design influence. Stage is a collaborative project between architects from Ukraine, Poland, Denmark and Italy, crowdsourced and crowdfunded by the citizens of Dnipro. The site for the pavilion has been centered around community involvement throughout the complex history of Dnipro, but it has laid unused for over 70 years.

Stage is an emanation of the rich and vibrant culture and was built to accommodate the needs of dozens of artists, poets, painters and musicians, who previously relied on various spaces scattered around the city. Their "collective creative energy" was used to reactivate the lost community space. Stage was recently awarded Special Mention in the 2018 European Prize for Urban Public Space.

© Alexandr Burlaka
© Alexandr Burlaka

Read on for more about Stage and the collaborative effort that made this initiative possible.

This Genetic Algorithm Predicts the Rise of Skyscrapers in Urban Areas

16:30 - 26 June, 2018

The growth and expansion of metropolitan areas has been evident over the past decade. Buildings are getting taller, and urban areas are getting larger. What if there was a way to predict this growth and expansion?

A new study by Spanish researchers from the University of A Coruna has discovered that the increase of skyscrapers in a city reflects the pattern “of certain self-organized biological systems,” as reported by ScienceDaily. The study uses "genetic evolutionary algorithms" to predict urban growth, looking specifically at Tokyo's Minato Ward. Architect Ivan Pazos, the lead author of the new study, explained the science behind the algorithm: "We operate within evolutionary computation, a branch of artificial intelligence and machine learning that uses the basic rules of genetics and Darwin’s natural selection logic to make predictions."

Read on for more about the study and what it could mean for the possibility of estimating vertical urban development.

What is the American Dream Home in 2018?

08:00 - 25 June, 2018
What is the American Dream Home in 2018?, © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Markham-suburbs_aerial-edit2.jpg'>Wikimedia user Sting</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5/'>CC BY-SA 2.5</a>
© Wikimedia user Sting licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5

A recent survey done by Chicago-based digital marketing firm Digital Third Coast asked 2,000 current or prospective homeowners for their feedback on their realistic dream house, along with their opinions on homeownership in general. Commissioned by an Illinois fireplace company, Northshore Fireplace, the survey presented respondents with a list of multiple choice questions, as well as open response questions to come up with an in-depth analysis of the 'American Dream Home of 2018.' The survey was done via the Amazon Mechanical Turk platform and included people from all across the country and different age groups. The main qualifying criteria for respondents was that they either owned a home currently or were looking to purchase a new home within the next 5 years.

Findings from the survey include ideal exterior and interior styles, most desired luxury, most popular words used to describe a dream home, average square footage, and much more. Based on the survey data, you can even compare design and finance ideas of GenX and Millenial homeowners to that of the Baby Boomers generation.

Read on for the detailed infographic that displays the resulting criteria for the 'American Dream Home of 2018.'

How to Use Downloadable Plan Sets to Attract New Clients (Without the "Cookie Cutter" Stigma)

08:00 - 21 June, 2018
How to Use Downloadable Plan Sets to Attract New Clients (Without the "Cookie Cutter" Stigma), Creative commons
Creative commons

There has been a recent trend to monetize design businesses online. Outside the world of architecture, digital marketing is growing exponentially, and every day more and more companies are taking advantage of the benefits that come from curating an online presence.

The traditional architectural business model is largely dominated by the fees associated with design and construction. The actual structure of the billing is perhaps another argument to have all on its own, but relying on this type of income has been (and likely will continue to be) an efficient and successful model for the majority in the design industry. But what if there was another market to leverage to supply your design business with passive, additional income?

There has long been an understandable stigma associated with spec-house plan sets. Most spec plans lack any response to site, personalization, and even quality design. There is a relatively saturated market for these spec-type plan sets, but the untapped potential lies in this model's intersection with architectural practice.

Here are three ways you can begin to reverse the stigma associated with selling plan sets online while providing your design business with an additional revenue stream.

Which Cities Have the Most High-Rises?

06:00 - 19 June, 2018
Which Cities Have the Most High-Rises?

The downtown skyline of a city is perhaps its most symbolic feature. The iconic cityscapes that we know and love are typically formed by skyscrapers, but much of the surrounding context is made up of other high-rise buildings. Yes, there is a difference between a skyscraper and a high-rise. Research company Emporis defines a high-rise as a building at least 35 meters (115 feet) or 12 stories tall. These high-rise buildings play a major role in the more sprawled urban context of larger cities today.

Read on for Emporis' list of the 20 cities in the world with the most high-rises. You might be surprised by which cities made the cut.

Which Cities Have the Most High-Rises? © <a href='https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Sajeewashaluka'>Wikimedia user Sajeewashaluka </a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a> © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/22240293@N05'>Flickr user Francisco Diaz</a> licensed under <a href=’https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/people/88503995@N02'>Flickr user Younguk Kim</a> licensed under <a href=’https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a> + 27

NCARB Reports Number of Architects Up 10% Compared to a Decade Ago

16:00 - 18 June, 2018
NCARB Reports Number of Architects Up 10% Compared to a Decade Ago, © <a href=https://www.flickr.com/photos/eager/5347925719'>Flickr user Forgemind ArchiMedia</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a>
© Flickr user Forgemind ArchiMedia licensed under CC BY 2.0

The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has recently released new data surveying the number of licensed architects in the United States. Conducted annually by NCARB, the 2017 Survey of Architectural Registration Boards provides exclusive insight into data from the architectural licensing boards of the 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. At first glance, the numbers reflect promising growth for the architecture profession. The number of architects licensed in the U.S. rose to 113,554, according to the survey, which is a 3% increase from 2016 and a 10% increase from the numbers reported a decade ago.

Even more impressive, when you compare the increase in registered architects to the U.S. population, the number of architects licensed has risen over 10% since 2008; while the total U.S. population has risen 8%, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. That equates to roughly 1 architect for every 2,900 people in the country. To put this into perspective, a medium-sized architecture firm of 50 people would theoretically have the potential to directly impact 145,000 people in the U.S.

Based on these statistics, one might assume that more architects naturally means more architecture, thus more influence from the profession in general. But that might not be the case. Read on for more data from NCARB's report and what it could mean for the profession as a whole.

"Past, Present, Future": Leading Dutch and Italian Designers on Being an Architect Yesterday, Today, and Beyond

09:30 - 13 June, 2018

Architecture is always evolving. The practice and business of architecture are undoubtedly evolving alongside the more obvious technological advances, but what we often forget is that there are no new ideas. When it comes to design, what we see manifested in our daily lives is the result of evolution. And at the root of that design evolution is inspiration.

A new initiative from Gianpiero Venturini and his firm Itinerant Office titled Past, Present, Future aims to open a research path based on the analysis of successful practices in the 21st Century while ultimately providing a new form of inspiration for the next generations of architects and designers. The documentary series begins with a select group of 11 international architects, including Jacob van Rijs, co-founder of MVRDV, Mario Cucinella, and Simone Sfriso, co-founder of TAMassociati. Each architect is featured in three video interviews in which they reveal the methodology behind their designs, the themes and approaches within their architectural practice, and the predictions they have for architecture in the near and distant future.