Social Housing is a principal element for a more democratic city. These housing structures provide decent dwellings for all citizens in urban areas and connect them to the rest of the city and its services.
Unfortunately, in many countries, the term "Social Housing" still has a negative connotation. It is often seen as a project that seeks to build the largest number of units with cheap materials, and little-to-no concern for the quality of life of its residents. Often times, it is designed for monetary reasons, as opposed to a project that serves the city and its people. Although this fact is recurrent, there are several examples that portray the opposite, in which architects manifest their political point of view through exceptional projects with innovative solutions that improve the urban experience.
To highlight these projects, we've gathered 45 examples that portray different modes of social housing. The diverse selection begins with small-scale, single-family residences that integrate public subsidy programs to large public enterprises for multifamily units.
Sketches are the first inkling into the design process of an architect, a way of observing and investigating a project’s development or even representing solutions for it. Through an architect’s sketches, one can better understand how a specific design move mirrors echoes throughout an entire work. Here, we have compiled sketches by Pritzker Prize winners - designers who have been awarded the highest recognization in the field of architecture - offering diverse techniques that can certainly inspire your next freehand experiment.
Elin Petronella and Charles Henry record the architecture and urban landscapes of European cities on vibrant, colorful, and even monochromatic embroideries. Classical Danish buildings, the bohemian streets of Paris, Lisbon's cable cars, and even the iconic Casa Batlló de Gaudí in Barcelona are some of the locations illustrated in the duo's work. See more of the textile artists/couple's work on Instagram: @petronella.art and @_charleshenry_.
Hong Kong is an autonomous territory in southeastern China known for its skyscrapers, urban density, and high prices. However, on Nico Van Orshoven's travelogue, Everywhere in Particular, the Belgian architect creates a visual portrait of the territory beyond the stereotypes. With lively public spaces and stunning natural landscapes, Hong Kong can and will surprise you.
Below, Van Orshoven recounts his visit to Hong Kong:
However, current architectural production in Brazil is bringing more and more colorful elements that shy away from the gray and beige purity. We've selected fifteen projects that use color to highlight architectural elements and generate dynamic perceptions of space.
Stairs aren't only a means of vertical circulation. Through their might and scale, this building element can easily become the protagonist of a space. From afar one can observe the movement of people; from within the staircase the viewer is treated to new angles and perspectives of the building.
The prominence of staircases in the work of 2001 Pritzker Prize winners Herzog and de Meuron underscore the belief that risers and treads are never solely an element of circulation—they are generators of dynamism and rhythm that influence the essence of their projects.
We absolutely love contemporary homes not only for their smart design but their visual appeal. Architects have a way of varying their design according to several factors such as the local and historical context, customs and cultures of users. The 10 projects below are no exception: open-floor plans, clean lines, minimal clutter, and a neutral color palette...
In a country like Brazil where all these factors vary in contrasting ways, it is possible to see a diversity of projects and architectural design approach adopted to deal with the challenge of building a residence.
Far from the noteworthy neighborhoods that often have buildings design by renowned architects, São Paulo's houses capture the modest scale that permeates the identity of its citizens. Alberto Simon, an artist based in the city of São Paulo, photographed the remarkable details of these unassuming housing in his project titled "tamanho_M," which roughly translates to Size M.
Find out more about the project in the artist's own words and see the impressive photos below.
It’s hard to find an architecture enthusiast who wasn’t obsessed with LEGO as a kid. Many of us would spend hours carefully placing the small, colorful blocks to make our crazy, imaginary environments in our heads a reality—well, somewhat. Whether it was building a dream home for your dolls or simply trying to construct the tallest tower, LEGO was certainly responsible for the first flirtations with the profession. It is no question this tool unleashes our creativity, and this can be demonstrated in a variety of ways.
For this reason, we searched our archive for some architects which highlight the creative and innovative ways LEGO is being used in adult-life. From a few pieces of the LEGO® Architecture Series to the appropriation of some important offices such as Zaha Hadid Architects and MVRDV, urban interventions are being inspired by toys and even serving as a furniture mold.
More than half of the planet is composed of water and most of the population lives in its vicinity. These sites are increasingly affected by environmental disasters or the increase in water levels caused by global warming, forming a scenario that brings new challenges to the way we live and think the buildings in coastal or riverine areas.
Floating architecture can adapt to changes in water levels and different climatic conditions, signaling a possible way to solve the problems pointed out. To increase your repertoire of floating references, we have gathered here 15 projects that have been implemented directly in the waters and have the most different uses: housing, cultural, educational, recreational and infrastructure.
With the green premise growing in popularity across the globe, more and more people are turning to recycling shipping containers as a way to reduce the extremely high surplus of empty shipping containers that are just waiting to become a home, office, apartment, school, dormitory, studio, emergency shelter, or anything else. The conversion of shipping containers to living spaces is not a new concept.
Shipping containers have become a more common architectural tool over the past few years. Through clippings, insertion of external elements, coatings, and equipment, the container is adapted according to its future use and desired aesthetics. See below 10 examples of works that adopt the use of containers.
Recycling material in architecture is becoming increasingly valued in order to enable the creation of sustainable projects. Certainly, naval containers have been one of the elements that have gained prominence in recent years for the design of private and public buildings that respect the environment. In addition to the ecological appeal, containers are a viable choice due to the speed and ease of assembly, the option of a cleaner construction site, or even the different design solutions that this material provides. With their standardized sizes, it becomes possible to create a modular structure that allows infinite possibilities of intervention, so that it suits different uses.
We have gathered here 20 examples of works that adopt the use of containers and some tips that will certainly help you on your next project.
Housing is certainly one of the most interesting themes that present itself to the architect, after all designing a residence allows the study of the usage and customs of human beings according to their culture, desires and daily life. Each project brings a new customer and, with it, an unprecedented challenge.
Through the ten selected projects, it is possible to see the inventiveness of the architects and how each work distinguishes itself from the other through the colors, geometry, relation with surroundings or even the way in which it innovates when proposing a new daily life to its inhabitants.
Africa is a diverse continent with different contexts that go beyond the stereotypes imagined and propagated by those who do not know it. These stereotypes also cover the architectural field. African architecture is always remembered for its beautiful vernacular projects or works by Keré, but other languages developed by architects on the continent are almost forgotten.
For this reason, in order to increase the panorama of contemporary architecture built in Africa, we have gathered here a selection of buildings that have been realized in fourteen different countries. Be inspired by the eighteen selected projects below.
The stair is one of the most fundamental elements of architecture. Whether thin and delicate or bold and colored, in some projects a staircase becomes the buildings’ main protagonist and serves as a focal point for the entire project. It is through staircases that architects create spatial forms and visuals that reveal new ways to perceive a constructed space. For this reason, we’ve searched our archives (again!) in search of some more inspiring stairs.
We’ve already presented a selection of staircases made from beautiful materials, and are back for round 2! With different types of materials and support techniques, some stairs give us the feeling of being suspended in the air, while others play with the exposed elements that sustain them. In this round-up, we’ve got some seriously spiraling stairs, both in public and private buildings. We’re also showcasing some unique metal staircases so thin they look almost see-through – a feat of architecture and structural design.
Check out ten more unique staircases from our archive below: