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Contrast or Harmony: The Aesthetic of Modern Adaptations to Historic Buildings

As cities grow and evolve, the question of preserving, rehabilitating, or adapting historic sites arises. The intervention in such buildings requires a delicate balance between honoring their heritage and meeting contemporary demands. Often, the most innovative and radical solutions emerge when architects attempt to renew a building while maintaining its original footprint and as many features as possible. They then create modern extensions that either harmonize or contrast with the original structure. This approach not only revitalizes the building but also celebrates the synergy between the past and present, including materials, construction technology, architectural movements, stories, and overall building quality. The layering of both old and new elements through harmony or contrast requires an intelligent and sensitive approach that gives the building a unique aesthetic and a new meaning.

12 Architecture Events to Pay Attention to in 2024

Spanning continents and cultures, architecture-focused events serve as platforms for the gathering of diverse groups of professionals to share innovations and embark on dialogues regarding some of the most pressing matters faced by our profession. Embodying the spirit of collaboration, highlighting local cultures and practices, and fostering open debates, this year’s list of events covers a diverse range of biennales, forums, city-wide celebrations, international fairs, and awards.

MVRDV and LOLA Unveil "Grüne Mitte," A Participatory Social Housing Complex in Düsseldorf, Germany

MVRDV and LOLA Landscape Architects have just revealed the new development of “Grüne Mitte” in Düsseldorf, Germany. Centered around open communication, negotiation, and compromise, the project aims to introduce 500 new apartments and community spaces to enhance the neighborhood. Approximately 50% of the scheme is designated as social or affordable housing, which was designed in participatory processes with the residents.

World Habitat Awards 2024 Recognize Housing Initiatives that Empower Communities

International non-profit organization World Habitat, in partnership with UN-Habitat, has announced the World Habitat Awards 2024. The prizes strive to highlight projects that demonstrate novel and transformative approaches to housing that incorporate principles of climate change adaptation and community-driven solutions. This year, 8 projects have been selected, out of which 2 projects were recognized with the Gold World Habitat Award.

A Production Facility in Germany and An Observatory in Athens: 8 Unbuilt Multi-Functional Projects Submitted by the ArchDaily Community

Urban environments are constantly evolving, with cities becoming the hubs of cultural diversity and economic life. In fact, the globe is speeding towards a future in which 70% of people will live in cities by 2050. Architects are at the core of this revolutionary movement, rethinking the nature of a city due to this urban surge. In response to this immense focus on newer and more diverse cities, architects and designers are leaning towards multifunctional and mixed-use projects. Attracting diverse crowds of people, mixed-use architecture explores the maximum potential of what a structure can serve.

A Reimagined Monument in Germany and a Scent Installation in the Netherlands: 9 Unbuilt Pavilions Submitted by the ArchDaily Community

Whether temporary or permanent, pavilions and urban installations represent an opportunity for architects to experiment with different shapes, materials, and textures. The results are often theatrical, welcoming visitors to new types of spaces, and blending the exterior and the interior. Pavilions are often commissioned for events, exhibitions, or cultural programs, offering opportunities to explore innovative materials, construction techniques, and spatial concepts on a smaller scale. Some events, like the Serpentine in UK or the MPavilion in Australia, propose a yearly reimagining of their structures, offering opportunities for established and emerging architects to express themselves. Others, like the Venice Biennale, reuse the permanent garden pavilions, but invite curators to prepare exhibitions to reimagine them for every edition.

Rescuing Architecture: Stories of Buildings Saved from Demolition

Regarding urban development, the choice between demolition and adaptive reuse holds far-reaching implications. From debates around the cultural and historical significance of structure to the environmental impact of the process of razing and rebuilding, compared to the cost of preserving and adapting, the matter of demolitions has ignited the architectural community to come together and ask for more responsible assessment strategies in hopes of rediscovering the value of existing structures. This article gathers some of the stories of buildings facing the threat of demolition and the processes that led to their rescue.

On-Site in Venice: 12 Interviews with Curators Discussing the Impact of the 2023 Venice Architecture Biennale

While exploring the 18th International Architecture Exhibition, the ArchDaily team had a chance to engage in conversation with several curators of the national pavilions, along with Lesley Lokko, the curator of the entire exhibition. The discussions delved into the unique character of this year’s edition focused on an understanding of Africa as a “Laboratory of the Future.” Through this lens, the biennale became “a healing experience,” in the words of Lesley Lokko, reinterpreting and deconstructing the meaning behind ideas such as decolonization, decarbonization, resource management, or finding the hidden potential in vernacular forms of practice.

Cologne Architecture City Guide: 15 Historical and Contemporary Projects to Discover in the City of Spires

With its culturally and historically rich context, the city of Cologne, also called Köln by its locals, is considered one of the most important centers in West Germany. Nestled on the banks of the Rhine River, the city unfolds its architectural narrative through the interplay between historical landmarks, and contemporary interventions. In the old town, the medieval Cologne Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the tallest cathedral in the world, dominates the skyline. The cityscape is also shaped by the Twelve Romanesque churches of Cologne.

Heneghan Peng Architects Wins Competition for Transforming the Ruins of a Historical Berlin Church

The design by heneghan peng architects, Dublin, with Ralph Appelbaum Associates, Berlin, was awarded 1st prize in the international competition for the replanning and expansion of the Old Tower of the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church. The competition’s purpose was to redesign the original West Tower, which was partially destroyed during a bombing by the Allied Forces in 1943, and return it to the tourist circuit as a war memorial and exhibition space.