Shai Gil

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Should Architecture Be Static? The Possibilities of Kinetic Buildings

Through shapes, colors, and the elements on their facades, many architects have sought to bring a sense of movement to works that are otherwise physically static. Santiago Calatrava, Jean Nouvel, and Frank Gehry are only a few of the masters who managed to provide a dynamic effect to motionless structures, highlighting the work in context using formal strategies borrowed from the plastic arts. In other cases, however, architects have also opted for physically kinetic structures that could bring a unique aesthetic or functional dimension to the work.

Single-Skin Metal Panels: Construction Tips and Details for Building Envelopes

The façade is one of the most important elements in an architectural project. In addition to being the building's first barrier against heat, rain, snow, or wind, it also largely determines the appearance of a building. It can make the project stand out, blend into urban context, or even manifest, at first glance, values of transparency, lightness, or simplicity that the architect seeks to convey. Accordingly, the façade also constitutes a significant portion of the total cost of the work and, therefore, must be specified very carefully, taking into account aesthetics, functionality, maintenance, and long-term behavior.

Open Corner Sliding Glass Doors: Towards a Light & Wide Architecture

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RoadRunner Residence / North Arrow Studio. Image © Chase DanielMill Valley Guesthouse / Turnbull Griffin Haesloop Architects. Image © David WakelyThe Cresta / Jonathan Segal FAIA. Image © Matthew SegalAustin home / A Parallel Architecture. Image Courtesy of Western Window Systems+ 27

Malibu Crest, a 2019 remodeling of a 1949 International Style home, was a vital undertaking by the architecture firm Studio Bracket that aimed to expand the structure’s square footage and panoramic views of Malibu while retaining over 50% of the home’s original walls. The project was ultimately successful, not only in its refurbishment of the interior rooms and reconfiguration of the space, but in its enlargement of the windows to truly capture views of the surrounding lagoon and mountains. This expansion of the view was done in part through an open corner window scheme and floor-to-ceiling glass, manufactured by Western Window Systems. The uninterrupted glass walls afforded by this open corner technology is one of the most effective ways that architects can open an interior space to the stunning vistas of a natural environment. Yet an even more striking configuration increasingly being employed by residential architects is that of the open corner sliding glass door – a system that can even more completely open an interior space to the unobstructed outdoors. Below, we discuss this technology in more detail, alongside several examples of projects using the open corner glass door.

Story Pod / Atelier Kastelic Buffey

© Shai Gil© Bob Gundu© Bob Gundu© Bob Gundu+ 13

Newmarket, Canada
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  64 ft²
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2015

How to Choose Light Bulbs for an Architectural Project

Walking into an electrical store can be intimidating. At first glance all the lights are on, and the thousands of chandeliers and lamps are blinding. When you walk toward the lamps, you see shelves with dozens of options, shapes, colors, prices, and uses. In each package, informational tables with numbers that seem to make no sense at all. Lumens, color temperature, wattage. There are so many confusing terms. But before you give up on everything and rush back with the cheapest option, turning the lamp on only for it to make your house or the house you designed feel like a sinister back-country funeral home, some basic information can help you a lot. We know that good lighting design can greatly improve a building or even its occupant's productivity. And poorly designed lighting can ruin it or negatively affect its occupants. To help out, we've gathered some information that can help you the next time a light bulb burns out in your home.

Muskoka Boathouse / Akb Architects

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 27

  • Architects: Akb Architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  2300 ft²
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2017
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: Hajom, Krone, Torp Windows, Kindl, Shou Shugi Ban

Offices and Workplaces: Examples in Plan

The functional distribution plays a fundamental role in the contemporary design of offices and places for work. The study of the architecture plan shows an interesting form of approach; not only allows for proper logistics and circulation but find efficient variations and innovations that will enable better workspaces that adapt to the current needs.

We have selected more than 50 plans of projects that will inspire you, recognizing the different ways in which architects have faced the challenge to design offices, in all different scale ranges.

Lake Manitouwabing Residence / MJMA

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 15

McKellar, Canada

Zinc-Coated Buildings: 20 Recyclable and Durable Facades

Zinc is a natural element extracted from ores. Its symbol, which appears in the dreaded Periodic Table, is Zn. Through a metallurgical process of burning its impurities (reducing zinc oxide and refining), it assumes a much more friendly appearance, and later becomes the sheets, coils, and rollers used in construction. The main characteristic of this material is its malleability, which allows it to be worked easily, allowing to cover complex forms in facades and roofs of buildings.

Carleton University Health Science Building / Montgomery Sisam Architects

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 14

  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  120000 ft²
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2018
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: Permacon, Plaka, Advanced Precast, CGC, Kanalco

Slack Toronto Office / Dubbeldam Architecture + Design

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 15

RO House / Echo Design

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 34

Pri Gan, Israel
  • Architects: Echo Design
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  420
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2016
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: AXO light, S-ONRO, Sky line

Conestoga College Student Recreation Centre / MJMA

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 20

Emerald Hills Leisure Centre / MJMA + MTa

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 16

  • Architects: MJMA, MTa
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  57000
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2016
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: American Olean, KBE, Spectrum Aquatics

Sheridan College Hazel McCallion Campus - Phase II / Moriyama & Teshima Architects + Montgomery Sisam Architects

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 20

Mississauga, Canada

Branksome Hall Athletics & Wellness Centre / MacLennan Jaunkalns Miller Architects

© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil© Shai Gil+ 25

  • Architects: MJMA
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  72000 ft²
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2015
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: Sound Solutions, Stone Tile, Stouffville Glass, Acapulco Pools, Clifford Masonry, +2

15 Awe-Inspiring Libraries That Will Make You Want to Read All Day

From community meeting hubs to secluded refuges, places to learn and places to study, libraries can be so much more than just a place to a check out a book. With this in mind, we’ve rounded-up 15 awe-inspiring libraries, including a Canadian church that was converted into a library, the first library in Muyinga, Burundi – built using participatory design and local materials – and the largest academic library in Finland. See what makes each of the libraries unique after the break.