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Nicolás Valencia

Editor at Archdaily & Graduated Architect at Universidad de Chile. ‘Idea Política Pública’ (2017) is his latest publication. Follow him on @nicovalenciam (Twitter / Instagram)

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7 Short Films About Architecture That You Won't Find on Netflix

06:00 - 14 September, 2018
7 Short Films About Architecture That You Won't Find on Netflix

If a work can be photographed, drawn, or expressed in words, it can also be the star of a film. This can be seen in Arquitectura en Corto, a Spanish cycle of short films about innovation and trends in contemporary architecture.

"The eruption and widespread availability of social media/mobile videos coupled with the need to illustrate and present innovative projects drives the union between architecture and these mediums," explains Roca Gallery and Technal, the organizers behind Arquitectura en Corto.

Last Floors of the Infamous Torre de David Have Tilted Following an Earthquake

16:00 - 27 August, 2018
Last Floors of the Infamous Torre de David Have Tilted Following an Earthquake, © <a href="//commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=User:EneasMx&amp;action=edit&amp;redlink=1">EneasMx</a>, bajo licencia <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0">CC BY-SA 4.0</a>. ImageCentro Financiero Confinanzas, conocido también como Torre de David, en 2017
© EneasMx, bajo licencia CC BY-SA 4.0. ImageCentro Financiero Confinanzas, conocido también como Torre de David, en 2017

The last five stories of the Torre de David in Caracas have tilted 25 degrees following the largest earthquake to hit Venezuela in 100 years. The well-known building gained infamy as an unprecedented vertical "slum" when its construction was abandoned and squatters began to inhabit the unfinished structure.

The 190-meter skyscraper with 45 stories became Latin America's 8th tallest tower in the 1990s, but it was never completed. Officially known as the Centro Financiero Confinanzas when construction began in 1990, the project succumbed to Venezuela's 1994 banking crisis.   

Which Countries Have Banned Asbestos?

08:00 - 10 August, 2018
Which Countries Have Banned Asbestos?, © <https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Asbest_leien_-_Asbestos_Roof_Shingles.jpg'>Wikimedia Commons</a>, Under the License <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en">CA Attribution-Share Alike 3.0</a>
© Wikimedia Commons, Under the License CA Attribution-Share Alike 3.0

The World Health Organization (WHO) has advised that countries throughout the world eliminate the use of all types of asbestos, a dangerous carcinogen, to prevent asbestos-related diseases. According to the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization, it was estimated that 40,000 people in the U.S. die each year from asbestos-related conditions.

Despite the WHO's concerns, Fast Company reported that under Trump's administration, "The [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency] (EPA) has even made it easier for companies to introduce new uses of asbestos-containing products in America." Although Asbestos Nation estimates that 55 countries have outlawed the carcinogen, this issue brings up a common question: Has my country banned asbestos? Below, we have provided a list by International Ban Asbestos Secretariat's Laurie Kazan-Allen on the following 65 countries and regions that have banned asbestos.

BAM Ranks the 20 Best Master of Architecture Programs in the World in 2018

08:00 - 7 August, 2018
BAM Ranks the 20 Best Master of Architecture Programs in the World in 2018, Courtesy of Harvard GSD
Courtesy of Harvard GSD

Spain-based platform Best Architecture Masters (BAM) has revealed its inaugural ranking of the best postgraduate architecture programs in the world. Based on the QS Ranking by Subjects – Architecture / Built Environment, the rankings were selected by 13 educational-performance indicators, including quality and internationality of faculty, alumni, and postgraduate program.

Harvard's Master in Architecture II has topped the BAM ranking, followed respectively by TU Delft's Berlage Post-master in Architecture and Urban Design, and MIT's Master of Science in Architecture and Urbanism. By region, Tsinghua University's Masters in Architecture was ranked first in Asia (#5); Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile's Magíster en Arquitectura in Latin America (#11), and Sydney University's Master of Architecture in Oceania ranks 17th worldwide.

The best master's degrees in architecture are:

The Best Universities in Latin America That Have Architecture Programs

16:00 - 19 July, 2018
The Best Universities in Latin America That Have Architecture Programs, © <a href="//commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:The_Photographer">The Photographer</a>, used under <a href="http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/deed.en">CC0</a>. Image Teatro Municipal in São Paulo, the city with the most universities featured in the regional ranking of the Times Higher Universities
© The Photographer, used under CC0. Image Teatro Municipal in São Paulo, the city with the most universities featured in the regional ranking of the Times Higher Universities

Times Higher Education (THE) revealed its ranking of the best universities in Latin America and the Caribean. The list is based on the same 13 indicators used in their global ranking, but with modifications that "better reflect the characteristics of Latin American universities," explains the organization. 

The 2018 edition of this regional ranking includes 129 universities from 10 countries rated in the following categories: teaching, research, citations, international outlook, industry income. It should be noted that this measurement is global at the university level and does not measure each academic concentration separately, as QS does in its annual ranking.

Dominated by universities in Brazil, we present the 10 best Latin American universities for architecture, according to Times Higher Education (THE).

DSGN Unveils the 2018 Winner of the Innovation Hub Competition in Bali, Indonesia

16:40 - 11 July, 2018
DSGN Unveils the 2018 Winner of the Innovation Hub Competition in Bali, Indonesia, HUBBALI, the winning design by Hanna Haczek & Ewelina Andrecka from Poland. Image Courtesy of DSGN
HUBBALI, the winning design by Hanna Haczek & Ewelina Andrecka from Poland. Image Courtesy of DSGN

DSGN (Design Student Global Network) has unveiled the winners of the Innovation Hub Competition, its first international design competition and part of its participation at Fuorisalone Milan Design Week this past April. The winning proposal — an Innovation Hub development scheme for a rural community site in Bali, Indonesia— will be built in a series of international design workshops starting in 2019. The hub will be used by the local Five Pillar Foundation to host classes focusing on community development and social entrepreneurship in the region.

HUBBALI, the winning design by Hanna Haczek & Ewelina Andrecka (Poland), was selected by the Five Pillar Foundation community and DSGN for its focus on participatory design and social development. Based on a 6x6 meter timber construction module, HUBBALI takes up an 18x18 meter area and is flanked by porches on entry sides side for gathering and relaxation. The design will be further developed with the Five Pillar Foundation and the surrounding Pejarakan community in Bali during construction.

Cruz y Ortiz Arquitectos Reveal Stadium Design for Morocco 2026 FIFA World Cup Bid

18:00 - 12 June, 2018
Cruz y Ortiz Arquitectos Reveal Stadium Design for Morocco 2026 FIFA World Cup Bid, © Cruz y Ortiz Arquitectos
© Cruz y Ortiz Arquitectos

Hours before the start of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia's opening ceremony, the soccer organization will reveal if the Canada–Mexico–United States or Morocco will be selected to hold 2026 FIFA World Cup.

Ahead of the announcement, Morocco revealed the design of the stadium that would hold the final match if the North African country wins the bid--a new venue with capacity for 80,000 spectators. This stadium has been designed by Spanish architects Cruz y Ortiz Arquitectos, the firm that recently inaugurated the Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid. They are also currently working on the design of the Dalian Yifan Football Club stadium in China and another sports venue in Switzerland.

Andrés Jaque Appointed as New Director of Advanced Architectural Design Program at Columbia GSAPP

12:45 - 28 May, 2018
Andrés Jaque Appointed as New Director of Advanced Architectural Design Program at Columbia GSAPP, Superpowers of Ten / Andrés Jaque—Office for Political Innovation. Image © Jorge López Conde
Superpowers of Ten / Andrés Jaque—Office for Political Innovation. Image © Jorge López Conde

Dean Amale Andraos of the Columbia GSAPP has announced the appointment of Andrés Jaque as the new Director of the Master of Science in Advanced Architectural Design program (AAD). Jaque is the founder of the Madrid-based Office for Political Innovation and has been teaching advanced design studios at Columbia GSAPP since 2013.

On June, 1, Jaque will succeed Associate Professor Enrique Walker, who directed the program from 2008 to 2018. "I’m very thankful for the rigorous vision and dedication that Walker has brought to the program during his directorship," acknowledged Andraos. "Enrique established a strong legacy of bringing experimental approaches to research and design and built a program that is firmly grounded in forming positions through design," added.

These Are The Latin American Cities With The Best Quality of Life

16:00 - 20 May, 2018
These Are The Latin American Cities With The Best Quality of Life, © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/jikatu/20111772669'>Jimmy Baikovicius [Flickr]</a>, licensed under  <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/">CC BY-SA 2.0</a>. ImageMontevideo, Uruguay
© Jimmy Baikovicius [Flickr], licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0. ImageMontevideo, Uruguay

Mercer, the multinational consultancy recently announced that Vienna, Austria has been ranked as the city with the best quality of life in the world, for the ninth year in a row. In a ranking that is dominated by European cities in the highest positions, this year Vancouver (5th), Singapore (25th) and Port Louis (83rd) are the highest-ranking cities in North America, Asia, and Africa, respectively.

So, what is happening in Latin America? Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay, once again occupies the top position. "Although they are challenged by economic and political turmoil," experts at the consultancy explain, "cities in emerging markets are catching up with major cities, after decades of investment in infrastructure, recreational facilities, and housing for the purpose of attracting talent and multinational businesses," they add.

In its twentieth edition, the consultancy, which specializes in advising multinational companies in employee transfers, evaluates more than 450 cities around the world, analyzing 39 factors divided into 10 categories, including political and economic environment, socio-cultural status, hygiene, educational institutions, leisure, housing, the market, and natural disasters.

© <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/beck32/7175474491'>Roberto C. [Flickr]</a>, licensed under <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/">CC BY-ND 2.0</a>. ImageMontevideo, Uruguay © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/deensel/39921091035'>Deensel [Flickr]</a>, licensed under <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0</a>. ImageBuenos Aires, Argentina © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/armandolobos/23193056943'>a l o b o s [Flickr]</a>, licensed under <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">CC BY-NC-ND 2.0</a>. ImageSantiago, Chile © <a href=https://www.flickr.com/photos/bz3rk/5731101473'>James Willamor [Flickr]</a>, licensed under <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/">CC BY-SA 2.0</a>. ImageSan Juan, Puerto Rico + 11

Francisco Sanin and Lim Jaeyong appointed as co-directors for the 2019 Seoul Biennale

04:00 - 17 May, 2018
Francisco Sanin and Lim Jaeyong appointed as co-directors for the 2019 Seoul Biennale, © Tommaso Tanini - <a rel="nofollow" class="external free" href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/imagearchive/3709498895/in/set-72157622307379208">https://www.flickr.com/photos/imagearchive/3709498895/in/set-72157622307379208</a>, <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0" title="Creative Commons Attribution 4.0">CC BY 4.0</a>, <a href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=35831971">Link</a> Francisco Sanin (left), Peter Wilson, Felicit Scott, Pier Vittorio Aureli during the Symposium (curated by Pietro Valle) "Architecture, visions and Power". in Florence, Italy
© Tommaso Tanini - https://www.flickr.com/photos/imagearchive/3709498895/in/set-72157622307379208, CC BY 4.0, Link Francisco Sanin (left), Peter Wilson, Felicit Scott, Pier Vittorio Aureli during the Symposium (curated by Pietro Valle) "Architecture, visions and Power". in Florence, Italy

Colombian professor Francisco Sanin and South Korean architect Lim Jaeyong were appointed as co-directors for the 2019 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism. The announcement is followed by an inaugural edition held in 2017 with 460,000 visitors in total.

Born in Medellin, Colombia, Sanin earned his degree at the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana. He had a crucial role in Medellin's urban transformation, working alongside former governor of Antioquia Sergio Fajardo, and was co-commissioner of the Korean Pavilion at the 2008 Venice Biennale. Currently, Sanin is an architecture professor at Syracuse University School of Architecture. Also, a practicing architect with works in Colombia, South Korea, and China.

These Are The 20 Most Livable Cities in the World in 2018

06:00 - 5 April, 2018
These Are The 20 Most Livable Cities in the World in 2018, © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/theodevil/4970314282'>Miroslav Petrasko [Flickr]</a>, bajo licencia <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">CC BY-NC-ND 2.0</a>. ImageViena, Austria
© Miroslav Petrasko [Flickr], bajo licencia CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. ImageViena, Austria

For the ninth consecutive year, Vienna has placed first in Mercer rankings on cities with the best quality of life in the world. Despite the current economic volatility in the European continent, the Austrian capital joins eight other European cities in the top ten.

This is the 20th edition of the Mercer Rankings. The consultancy, which specializes in advising multinational companies in the transfer of employees, evaluated more than 450 cities around the world. Their rankings take into account 39 factors divided into 10 categories, including political and economic environment, socio-cultural status, sanitation, educational and leisure opportunities, housing markets and natural disasters.

At the regional level, Vancouver (5th), Singapore (25th), Montevideo (77th) and Port Louis (83rd) are the highest ranking cities in North America, Asia, Latin America and Africa respectively. According to Mercer, the twenty cities with the best quality of life in the world are:

© <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/mark-gunn/28426846501/'>Mark Gunn [Flickr]</a>, bajo licencia <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0</a>. ImageZurich, Suiza © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/patarika/35144631252'>PATARIKA [Flickr]</a>, bajo licencia <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/">CC BY-NC-ND 2.0</a>. ImageAuckland, Nueva Zelanda © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/mariano-mantel/10354531996/'>Mariano Mantel [Flickr]</a>, bajo licencia <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/">CC BY-NC 2.0</a>. ImageMunich, Alemania © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/gord99/15967566717'>Gord McKenna [Flickr]</a>, bajo licencia <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">CC BY-NC-ND 2.0</a>. ImageVancouver, Canadá + 20

Who Has Won the Pritzker Prize?

08:00 - 25 February, 2018
Who Has Won the Pritzker Prize?, Pritzker Prize 2017 Ceremony: Ryue Nishizawa, Tadao Ando, Kazuyo Sejima, Rafael Aranda, Glenn Murcutt, Carme Pigem, Ramon Vilalta, Toyo Ito, Shigeru Ban. Image © The Hyatt Foundation / Pritzker Architecture Prize
Pritzker Prize 2017 Ceremony: Ryue Nishizawa, Tadao Ando, Kazuyo Sejima, Rafael Aranda, Glenn Murcutt, Carme Pigem, Ramon Vilalta, Toyo Ito, Shigeru Ban. Image © The Hyatt Foundation / Pritzker Architecture Prize

The Pritzker Prize is the most important award in the field of architecture, awarded to a living architect whose built work "has produced consistent and significant contributions to humanity through the art of architecture." The Prize rewards individuals, not entire offices, as took place in 2000 (when the jury selected Rem Koolhaas instead of his firm OMA) or in 2016 (with Alejandro Aravena selected instead of Elemental); however, the prize can also be awarded to multiple individuals working together, as took place in 2001 (Herzog & de Meuron), 2010 (Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa of SANAA), and 2017 (Rafael Aranda, Carme Pigem, and Ramon Vilalta of RCR Arquitectes).

The award is an initiative funded by Jay Pritzker through the Hyatt Foundation, an organization associated with the hotel company of the same name that Jay founded with his brother Donald in 1957. The award was first given in 1979, when the American architect Philip Johnson, was awarded for his iconic works such as the Glass House in New Canaan, Connecticut.

The Pritzker Prize has been awarded for almost forty straight years without interruption, and there are now 18 countries with at least one winning architect. To date, half of the winners are European; while the Americas, Asia, and Oceania share the other twenty editions. So far, no African architect has been awarded, making it the only continent without a winner.

Drone Photographs of Bogotá's Grand Architecture Show the "Unedited" Side of the City

14:00 - 12 February, 2018
Drone Photographs of Bogotá's Grand Architecture Show the "Unedited" Side of the City, La Biblioteca Virgilio Barco from a certain perspective inspired by the movie "Inception". Image © Camilo Monzón
La Biblioteca Virgilio Barco from a certain perspective inspired by the movie "Inception". Image © Camilo Monzón

Colombian graphic designer and creative director Camilo Monzón's Instagram account is not your average catalog of Bogotá's iconic architecture. 

Camilo explains that his particular way of capturing the city arose while he tried out his drone. "I realized that the tiles from nearby buildings showed me an unedited side of Bogotá that should be revealed and shown to everyone," he said in a conversation with ArchDaily en Español. "I think of it as rediscovering the city."

Alejandro Aravena Discloses New Details on ELEMENTAL's Cultural Mega-Project in Qatar

06:00 - 2 February, 2018
Alejandro Aravena Discloses New Details on ELEMENTAL's Cultural Mega-Project in Qatar, ELEMENTAL proposal for the Art Mill in Qatar. Image © ELEMENTAL / Malcolm Reading Consultants
ELEMENTAL proposal for the Art Mill in Qatar. Image © ELEMENTAL / Malcolm Reading Consultants

In May 2017, the Chilean firm ELEMENTAL was chosen to design the Art Mill, a cultural center that will be one of the largest in Qatar and will share a neighborhood with the Museum of Islamic Art (by I.M. Pei) and the National Museum of Qatar (by Jean Nouvel). Organized by Malcolm Reading Consultants, the final verdict closed an exhausting call that initially received 489 proposals and extended for two years in its four phases.

After making a trip to Doha (Qatar), Alejandro Aravena spoke with Chilean newspaper El Mercurio and shared details about this project. "One of the things we set out to do is to make this endure for the next 1,000 years," explains the 2016 Pritzker Prize winner. "When you look at industrial facilities, especially silos, archaeological ruins are the kind of things that remain," he adds.

Run, Jump, Hide and Slide on ELEMENTAL's Newly Designed Urban Children's Game

06:00 - 18 January, 2018
Run, Jump, Hide and Slide on ELEMENTAL's Newly Designed Urban Children's Game, La Serpentina en el Parque Cultural de Valparaíso, Chile. Image Cortesía de ELEMENTAL
La Serpentina en el Parque Cultural de Valparaíso, Chile. Image Cortesía de ELEMENTAL

A new children’s urban playground has captured the attention and energy of children of all ages in the center of Valparaíso’s Cultural Park (Chile). The metallic structure is 40 meters long and has a colorful undulating path where children can run, jump, hide and slide.

La Serpentina is one of the public space projects designed by ELEMENTAL (Alejandro Aravena). It was built for Somos Choapa in Chile and is currently in Valparaíso as part of the XX Biennial of Architecture and Urbanism of Chile.

La Serpentina follows a similar design to the equipment at the Bicentenary Children’s Park (2012) in Santiago. La Serpentina is one of two interventions entered by Somos Choapa in the Biennial. The second project is a prototype with a series of touch screens installed in the main area of the Cultural Park of Valparaíso, accounting for over 100 concrete initiatives of the project.

10 Architects to Design Chapels for the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale

14:00 - 16 January, 2018
10 Architects to Design Chapels for the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale, © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/archer10/5115399433/'>Dennis Jarvis [Flickr]</a>, bajo licencia <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>CC BY-SA 2.0</a>. ImageBasílica papal de San Pedro, El Vaticano
© Dennis Jarvis [Flickr], bajo licencia CC BY-SA 2.0. ImageBasílica papal de San Pedro, El Vaticano

In 2018 the Vatican will participate in the Venice Architecture Biennale for the first time. Ten international architects will construct 10 different chapels as part of the representation of the city-state in the Italian architecture event. The news was confirmed by Paraguayan media outlets ABC y Última Hora, who revealed that one of the participants was local architect Javier Corvalán.

The elite group of architects was selected by Francesco Dal Co, an Italian architecture historian and curator. The designers have been instructed that their chapels must be able to be relocated so that they can be deployed around the world, in places that are in need of these spaces of worship.

The architects who will build chapels in the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale:

Will Automation Affect Architects?

08:00 - 10 January, 2018
Will Automation Affect Architects?, © Nicolás Valencia, using image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/masakiishitani/4065681012/'>Flickr user masakiishitani</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/'>CC BY-NC-SA 2.0</a>
© Nicolás Valencia, using image © Flickr user masakiishitani licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

According to The Economist, 47% of the work done by humans will have been replaced by robots by 2037, even those traditionally associated with university education. While the World Economic Forum estimates that between 2015 and 2020, 7.1 million jobs will be lost around the world, as "artificial intelligence, robotics, nanotechnology and other socio-economic factors replace the need for human employees."

It's not science fiction: the MIT Technology Review warns that the current debate over raising the minimum wage for fast food employees in the United States would accelerate their own automation. On the other hand, Silicon Valley personalities and millionaires like Elon Musk and Richard Branson warned that the impact of automation will force the creation of a universal basic income to compensate not only the massive unemployment that would generate these new technologies but also the hyper-concentration of the global wealth.

One advocate of this idea is the British economist Guy Standing who wrote at the Davos Forum that it "would be a sensible precaution against the possibility of mass displacement by robotization and artificial intelligence," but will automation affect architects? Will we really be replaced by robots?

A Lawn Circle 70 Meters in Diameter Took Over Plaza Mayor in Madrid

14:00 - 16 December, 2017
A Lawn Circle 70 Meters in Diameter Took Over Plaza Mayor in Madrid, Cortesía de Ayuntamiento de Madrid / Difusión
Cortesía de Ayuntamiento de Madrid / Difusión

Earlier this year the Plaza Mayor in Madrid awoke covered by a giant meadow of natural grass. A circle of 70 meters in diameter, without any restriction of access, allowed Madrilenians to take a break, sit down, read a book or simply take a picture, enjoying this urban landmark from a new perspective.

This seemingly simple, but impressive doing is the most recent intervention by the anonymous artist SpY was part of Four Seasons (Cuatro Estaciones), an urban art program run by the Madrid City Council to celebrate the IV Centenary of the Plaza Mayor.