LocationDhahran Saudi Arabia
Work on the Snøhetta-designed renovation of 550 Madison Avenue, better known as the AT&T Headquarters, has ground to a halt in New York City. The controversial postmodernist icon, designed by Philip Johnson and John Burgree, has become the youngest building in New York to receive "Individual Landmark" status by the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), striking a blow to controversial efforts to renovate the building.
Under major renovation plans designed by Snøhetta, the scheme was set to be transformed at street level with a more transparent base, with the existing stone façade removed. Meanwhile, the signature ground floor element, an enormous arched entry, would be rendered a shadowy profile of its former self behind a fritted glass curtain wall. The plans attracted wide criticism, such as an intervention on film by Robert A M Stern, and grassroots campaigns including docomomo and change.org.
Snøhetta has released images of its proposed sustainable data center concept, named “The Spark.” The project seeks to address the typical high-energy-consuming typology of the data center, transforming it into an “energy-producing resource for communities to generate their own power.”
The proposal is adaptable for a wide range of contexts and can be scaled for any location around the world, fueling connected cities with energy from the center’s excess heat.
Lasting for close to two decades now, the annual Serpentine Gallery Pavilion Exhibition has become one of the most anticipated architectural events in London and for the global architecture community. Each of the previous eighteen pavilions have been thought-provoking, leaving an indelible mark and strong message to the architectural community. And even though each of the past pavilions are removed from the site after their short summer stints to occupy far-flung private estates, they continue to be shared through photographs, and in architectural lectures. With the launch of the 18th Pavilion, we take a look back at all the previous pavilions and their significance to the architecturally-minded public.
Aldo Amoretti has released new photographs as construction continues on Europe's first underwater restaurant in Norway, designed by Snøhetta. The structure is currently being built on a floating barge in close proximity to its final location. Upon completion, the scheme will also house a marine life research center, teetering over the edge of a rocky outcrop, semi-submerged in the ocean.
Built from concrete, the monolithic structure will come to rest on the seabed 16 feet (five meters) below the water's surface, fusing with the ecosystem of the concealed shoreline. Below the waterline, the restaurant’s enormous acrylic windows will frame a view of the seabed.
The New York City Public Design Commission and Mayor Bill de Blasio have announced the 11 projects selected as winners of their 2018 Awards for Excellence in Design. Established in 1983, the award has been bestowed annually to projects from the city’s five boroughs that “exemplify how innovative and thoughtful design can provide New Yorkers with the best possible public spaces and services and engender a sense of civic pride.”
The 2018 awards recognized projects which responded to the de Blasio Administration’s commitment to providing an “equitable, resilient, and diverse city for all New Yorkers.” All five New York boroughs feature in the awards, with schemes encompassing education, culture, art, and recreation.
Not all architects get the opportunity to design a museum. Between budget, scale and factors external to the field of architecture, designing a museum--and actually getting it built-- may mark the pinnacle of one's professional trajectory.
These public buildings provide an invaluable service to the communities in which they are located; from education to commemoration and (occasionally) the provision of public space, museums are "shining lights" in which architecture plays a fundamental role.
LocationEast Donghai Road, Laoshan District, Qingdao, Shandong, China
DC Alliance Design TeamYi Dong, Han Jiang, Han Wang, Xiaoge Yu, Cheng Chen, Zhigang Huang, Yuandan Zhou, Bin Long, Huibo Xie
Snøhetta Design TeamRobert Greenwood, Kai Reaver
Snøhetta have released images of their proposed planetarium and visitor’s center for Norway’s largest astronomical facility. Nestled in a dense forest 28 miles (45 kilometers) north of Oslo, the scheme features a new 16,000 square foot (1,500 square meter) planetarium, and “interstellar cabins” mimicking small planets.
The facilities seek to offer a range of scientific activities to be experienced by the public, including astronomy, sun studies, and natural science, permitting the exploration of the night sky, and the Northern Lights.
This article was originally published by Metropolis Magazine as "Inside the Design of Norway’s Most Controversial Building."
The sun is setting fast over a half-frozen hill about five miles west of Oslo. Named Kikkut after a now-demolished villa, the site neighbors Ekely, the old estate of Edvard Munch (itself now half razed), and save for some graffiti-covered detritus and an early crop of spring wildflowers, its peak is totally barren. Squinting northward to Munch’s Winter Atelier some 500 feet in the distance, it’s hard to believe this is the proposed site for A House to Die In: one of the most controversial building proposals in recent Norwegian history.
The brainchild of Norway’s enfant terrible artist Bjarne Melgaard, the proposal for “A House to Die In” is a luminescent, UFO-like living sculpture that doubles as a studio and home for Melgaard and his parents. With financial backing from two of the most powerful property developers in the country, the Selvaags and Sealbay A/S—longterm friends of the artist who also supplied the plot of land on the outskirts of the city—the Oslo-based Melgaard approached local Norwegian firm Snøhetta in 2011 with his idea for a combined artwork, studio—and final resting place.
What is the role of sound and acoustics in the work of leading architecture practices? In February this year, reSITE and MAAT in collaboration with Meyer Sound hosted RESONATE: Thinking Sound and Space, a conference focused exclusively on the intersection of architecture and sound.
Elizabeth Diller of Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Snøhetta's Kjetil Trædal Thorsen, Michael Jones from Foster + Partners, the founders of Meyer Sound, and the pioneer of sound art Bernhard Leitner spoke with reSITE and Canal 180 at MAAT Museum in Lisbon, Portugal. Below are the 4 episodes in the series, where they discuss the role of sound in designing cultural venues and concert halls and the changing role of the architect in an age of specialization:
The Arch for Arch, an intertwined wooden archway honoring Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu, has debuted in downtown Cape Town, South Africa on a site near Parliament where Tutu held many of his anti-Apartheid protests.
Designed by Snøhetta and Johannesburg-based Local Studio, in collaboration with Design Indaba and Hatch engineers, the Arch for Arch consists of 14 woven strands of Larch wood, representing the 14 chapters of South Africa’s constitution. Reaching nearly 30 feet tall (9 meters), the structure invite visitors to pass through and be reminded of the location’s prominent role in their country’s history on their way to the Company’s Garden, one of the most popular public spaces in the city since its establishment in 1652.
Liminal Studio with Snøhetta and Rush Wright Wins Competition for UNESCO World Heritage Site Education Center in Tasmania
Update 3/2/18: A previous version of this article named Snøhetta as the leader of the team; the principal architect is in fact Liminal Studio.
Australian firm Liminal Studio, in collaboration with Snøhetta and Rush Wright Associates, has been selected as the winner of an international competition for the design of the new History and Interpretation Center at Cascades Female Factory Historic Site in South Hobart, Tasmania.
One of the most significant female penal sites dating back to 19th century, when Australia was still a British penal colony, the Cascades Female Colony was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010. The new History and Interpretation Center will allow visitors to learn about the site’s history and how its social, cultural and political implications have impacted present day Australia.
In a recent film published by Metropolis Magazine, New York-based architect Robert A M Stern explains why we should care about Philip Johnson’s controversial AT&T building. As landmark designation hearings to protect the buildings external facade continue, demolition of the lobby of this iconic Postmodern New York City skyscraper has already completed.
The designs by Snøhetta for the renovation of the building at 550 Madison Avenue have launched the building to the forefront of the debate about the preservation of Postmodern heritage. The plans include replacing the stone facade with undulating glass in order to transform the building's street presence. Should plans progress, the once prominent arched entry will sit behind fritted glass and stone covered columns will be unwrapped to create a hovering datum.
Snøhetta has unveiled its design for "Svart," a hotel for sustainable tourism company Arctic Adventure of Norway. Located within the Arctic Circle, on the edge of Norway's Holandsfjorden fjord at the base of the Svartisen glacier, the building is designed to the "Powerhouse" building standard, a system developed by Snøhetta and a group of collaborators for creating energy-positive sustainable buildings.
The result of an 8 year collaborative process between Snøhetta and Norwegian artist Bjarne Melgaard, “A House to Die In,” is now on display at a new exhibition Tjuvholmen in Oslo, Norway.
Organized by the architects and artist with Selvaag Art Collection, the exhibition shows the artistic process of designing the unique home and studio that is currently seeking approval for its construction. To be located on the grounds of painter Edward Munch’s former house and workshop in western Oslo, the sculptural proposal has prompted discussion over how it honors the legacy of one of Norway’s most famous artists.
A mirror-clad shopping mall has been awarded the first prize for its innovative materiality and strong connection to the city in the “2017 Unbelievable Challenge” architectural design competition. “Unwrapped”, submitted by Ben Feicht, a recent graduate of the University of Oregon, was chosen as the winner out of the proposals from 22 different countries. Three other projects were awarded as runner-up.
Take a closer look at the winning design, after the break.
Citing the fact that the lobby had already been altered in the 1990s – including the removal of the “Golden Boy” statue – when the building switched tenants from AT&T to the Sony Corporation, the Landmarks Preservation Commission decided last month that the interiors were not deserving of landmark status.