The landscape of downtown São Paulo would not be the same without the presence of Copan. The building inserts Niemeyer's curves into São Paulo's dense verticality, creating a distinctive rhythm that becomes a landmark for all who encounter it. Besides accommodating around five thousand residents, the building serves various purposes, offering different typologies for its residential programs, varying apartment sizes, and prioritizing diversity among its tenants. Differences also emerge when we examine how each person inhabits a standard floor plan; renovations proposing distinct finishes and new layouts reflect the character of each resident but also showcase the inventiveness of the architects intervening in this classic structure. Thus, we gather here projects realized within this icon to demonstrate how each home is unique, even when created in series.
Apartments: The Latest Architecture and News
Choosing how to paint your apartment can significantly impact its atmosphere and visual appeal. While it may be tempting to stick with the comfort of white walls, considering different colors can enhance your everyday life and make your home more vibrant. To help you navigate the many possibilities, we've gathered some tips for creating a more colorful and personalized living space.
Construction on MVRDV’s La Serre started. Situated in the ZAC Léon Blum eco-district in Issy-les-Moulineaux, just outside of Paris, and designed by MVRDV, in collaboration with landscape architect Alice Tricon, and developer OGIC, the scheme aims to challenge conventional apartment living by integrating nature into the urban setting. The project features housing units, shops, and ample greenery, aiming to create a haven of biodiversity.
MVRDV has revealed the design of a new residential complex located in the Enterprise Research Campus in the Allston neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts, a site adjacent to the Harvard Business School. The development, already under construction, features 343 apartments with a quarter of them dedicated to affordable units. It also includes amenities for the residents and retail spaces for small local businesses, aiming to create an inclusive and enjoyable space within the new urban district.
On a site that also hosts the Olympic Sports Centre, the 2023 Asian Games complex, UNStudio has unveiled the design of the new Hiwell Amber Centre, a complex of four high-rise towers planned to add a mic of offices, apartments, hotels, art spaces and retail to the city center of Hangzhou, China. Responding to the area’s rapid economic and cultural growth, the new development aims to provide a wide range of services to residents and visitors alike. To open up towards the city, the smooth glass curtain wall of the towers peels apart to reveal a tapestry-like facade that envelops the main plazas and civic spaces, creating an ‘urban living room.’
BIG Unveils Design for New Residential Development in Ellinikon, Europe’s Largest Urban Regeneration Project
Bjarke Ingels Group has revealed the design of Park Rise residences, a new development the Little Athens neighborhood of Ellinikon, featuring modern homes, greenspace, retail, office, and hospitality. The Ellinikon is an ambitious urban regeneration project that reimagines the grounds of Athens’ old international airport and transforms it into a 6.2 million-square meter smart city. Within this development, the Little Athens neighborhood aims to become an integrated part of Ellinikon’s smart urban ecosystem and bring over 1100 new residences to the northwestern coastline of the development.
Despite the bad reputation of public housing in the United States, organizations, planners, and architects in Portland, Oregon are determined to create affordable housing that does not sacrifice quality or aesthetic appeal. While Portland has developed a bad reputation regarding its homelessness problem, in the past four years resources have flowed in the right direction, and designers have taken this in stride to design livable and striking buildings, within very restrictive budgets. Through innovative and creative approaches to construction and design, these organizations and designers have utilized federal, state, and city resources to make these types of projects a reality.
Parabase Reuses Prefabricated Concrete Elements for a Radical Housing Development in Basel, Switzerland
Architectural studio Parabase has been chosen for the development of several plots of Areal Walkeweg in Basel for the purpose of creating affordable apartments and an integrated migration center. The design solution, titled “Elementa,” reuses components from deconstructed cantonal properties, transforming the former columns and floor plates into walls and façade elements. The project was chosen following an open competition, where the international jury favored Parabase’s solution for its strong aesthetics combined with the creative reuse of prefabricated concrete elements.
How to design livable spaces, making the most of the available square meters? Currently, the design of housing in major urban centers is often linked to finding ways to optimize interior spaces, integrate environments for better lighting and ventilation, and establish a connection with the outdoors. According to the needs of its inhabitants, project requirements, and often construction costs, architecture professionals seek to provide flexibility, spaciousness, and adaptability to spaces through renovations, transformations, and more, which provide good living conditions and consider the possible changes that future generations may have to face.
The COVID-19 pandemic has seen inequalities laid bare, especially when it pertains to the unequal allotment of architectural resources to people. The start of the pandemic saw Europeans who could afford it, for example, leaving the urban metropolises they lived in and going away to their second homes in the countryside. We’ve also seen how poorer people in places like New York, for example, do not have adequate access to green spaces – a critical part of human well-being. Within this conversation is also the issue of social housing - known by multiple names around the world - and how the social housing that gets designed in the present and in the future should respond to ever-changing global needs.
Although the use of color can be employed to hide or disguise a specific characteristic, it can also be used to highlight them. Within the Latin American territory, we can observe that shades of red, green, and blue have predominated in residential architecture, aiming to integrate a language appropriate to the context in which it is implemented.
Housing has always been a significant issue in metropolises. It accommodates the city's population and can impact other urban concerns, such as the necessary commute between home and work or school.
Broadly, urban densification enjoys widespread acceptance in urban planning. In today's context, the correlation between densification and housing is addressed by designing high-rise buildings with smaller floor areas. This approach yields apartments with minimal functionalities, known in Brazil as kitchenettes. As with any architectural type, these compact residences have advantages and disadvantages, serving either as a model of efficiency or as an illustration of housing instability.
There is no material more diverse and timeless than brick - which can be seen as a staple in both ancient and modern architecture. In many cases, stripping away the drywall of a historical building can reveal beautiful brick walls, which bring a great deal of texture, warmth, and character into a living space. Whether left raw or painted, the look lends itself to a range of styles from rustic to industrial.
Old and compartmentalized plants, small openings, and lower floors receive scarce natural light. Improving natural lighting in an apartment can be challenging. However, some strategies can help maximize light entry into interiors and bring benefits such as comfort, spaciousness, well-being, and energy savings.
Small homes are a common reality in many urban areas around the world for various reasons. These homes made up of small houses or compact apartments, have become increasingly popular due to the shortage of land and high housing prices in urban areas. Although their size may be limited, contemporary architecture practices focus on intelligent designs to maximize available space and offer comfort to their inhabitants. They often offer efficient layouts, with multifunctional areas that adapt to needs. In addition, some of them integrate innovative design and furniture solutions to optimize space and provide additional storage.
Housing is one of the primary aspects of the architecture profession. There are many ways to explore it, from a subordinate program such as a religious cloister to the splendor of a single-family home. Luis Fernández-Galiano is torn between the "waste" of a low-density area in this type of housing and its seductive formal charm. He reminds us that high-density collective housing, such as apartments, makes more sense in an urban context.