Skyrocketing prices of London housing have become so unbearable that many have turned to less-than-ideal compromises. Large homes can be found but come with commutes of hours; places are still available in the city, but only for those with sky-high paychecks. Unable to balance their needs, people are resorting to workarounds that disrupt the existing urban fabric and dissatisfy all involved. Surely we can do better.
Bee Breeders: The Latest Architecture and News
In the search for solutions to the global housing crisis, Bee Breeders are calling for essay submissions to explore the problem further. Winning entries will be included in the first issue of their print publication ARCHHIVE, which will focus on affordable housing.
Submissions can be historical, present, or prospective. They can be data-centric, analytical, fictional, critical, or conceptual; and can be from participants related to any field or discipline. “Essays” can be submitted as written or illustrative, as long as they fit on a single or double-page spread so they can be featured in the publication. (More information available at archhivebooks.com)
Bee Breeders have announced the winners of the Iceland Northern Lights Rooms competition, where entrants were tasked with designing a series of guest houses that framed the beauty of the surrounding context. In response to the delicate landscape, Mývatn Lake in Iceland, the brief outlined a number of restrictions. These included no permanent construction within 200m from the lake, and that all guest houses were to be movable. Shared themes throughout all the successful proposals were specific material experimentation, “distinct interaction with the site and sky,” scalable design, irand cost-conscious solutions.
Bee Breeders have announced the winners of the Nemrut Volcano Eyes Competition, where participants were tasked with designing a visitor observation platform on top of Nemrut, a dormant volcano in eastern Turkey. With the unique natural environment, including a caldera and a pair of lakes, the observation platform is intended to provide unobstructed views of the extraordinary landscape. The jury encouraged submissions that were cost-effective, environmentally-responsible, and energy-efficient.
Below are the winners of the competition:
It’s hard to remember a time when there wasn’t a coffee shop perched on every corner. With the boom of coffee culture in the late 90s, mornings seem unbearable without the support of a caffeine kick. Emulating the cosmopolitan New York lifestyle of shows like Friends, Seinfeld, and Sex and the City, ambiance-inspired cafés that encourage its customer to linger were a big step away from the greasy spoons of yesteryear.
Bee Breeders has announced the winners of the recent Sydney Affordable Housing Challenge. The international architecture competition asked entrants to address the growing affordable housing crisis in Sydney. The challenge aimed at "garnering global attention to the important issue of housing in Sydney, Australia, where the economy is strong but the residential market is among the least affordable, according to surveys of major metropolitan markets."
Third-largest national park in one of Europe’s greenest country, Kemeri is a stunning and eclectic mix of forests, lakes, swamps and ancient raised bogs. Situated just a 1-hour train ride from Latvia’s capital, Riga, the park is home to a wide range of fauna including rare birds like the black stork, as well as moose, deer, elk, foxes, wolves, and wild cattle and horses. These were all reintroduced into this unique ecosystem with some help from the World Wildlife Fund.
Bee Breeders have announced the winners of the SKYHIVE Skyscraper Challenge. The purpose of the competition was to allow architects, design students, engineers, and artists from all over the world to "generate design ideas for iconic high rise buildings in cities around the globe."
Riga Black Balsam is an iconic traditional Latvian drink, created from a combination of 24 ingredients, including herbs, roots, berries, and fruit juices. Its smooth and versatile taste can be enjoyed any number of ways, though it is often taken neat, or mixed into a cocktail of choice. More and more lately, younger audiences have begun to recognize that Black Balsam is great when mixed into cocktails.
In an attempt to further entice the younger fan base, the traditional Latvian liquor is launching the Black Balsam Laboratories competition, in which cocktail “workstations” would be situated in numerous locations around the world.
For a relatively small country, Ireland has a rich musical history which is incredibly diverse and spanning all musical genres. Connolly's of Leap is a venue which promotes all types of music; from traditional Irish folk music, to the most avant-garde electronic music of today. The IRISH MUSIC VENUE architecture competition focuses on breathing new life into an existing and iconic music venue in the heart of rural Ireland.
The Pape Nature Park in the south west region of Latvia is a birdwatching paradise, and home to some of the region’s most unique and majestic species found in the wild. In addition to being a home for some 50,000 migratory birds each year, the Pape Nature Park is now renowned for its reintroduction of several large herbivore species into the wild. Most notably was the reintroduction of wild horses, who had been driven from the area by human agriculture and settlements.
Bee Breeders have announced the winners of the Construction Container Facelift architecture competition. The competition jury received a wide range of work, but selected proposals which were based on a realistic implementation of a novel solution, maintaining the inherent durability and functionality of the shipping containers versus altering them strictly for aesthetics.
Bee Breeders have announced the winners of the Amber Road Trekking Cabins competition for the Latvian Baltic Coast. The competition sought proposals for low impact, transient and inhabitable infrastructure to support a planned hiking network along vast topographies of the Latvian Baltic Coast. The winning projects considered the various landscape elements of the site including pine trees, dunes, and white sand beaches while responding to programmatic requirements - economy, constructability, environmental sensitivity and utilitarian function.
The competition collectively provokes reflection of ecological conservation and its prescience in contemporary cultural and social practice, serving as an economic alternative to the commercialized, industrialized landscape definitive of global capital interests.
Bee Breeders have selected the winners for the Pape Bird Observation Tower competition, which saw participants submitting designs for a new bird observation station located in the Nica and Rucava Municipalities in the South Western region of Latvia. The competition is the first in a series organized by Bee Breeders in collaboration with Pasaules Dabas Fonds, Latvia's leading nature conservation fund. The competition asked for proposals for a tower that would replace a previous tower that was struck by lightening.
Iceland has a vast, wild landscape, with some of the most unique and incredible natural views in the world. Appropriately known as the land of fire and ice, Iceland’s volcanic fields blend seamlessly into gigantic glaciers and tumbling waterfalls. Iceland is also an ideal location to view the iconic Aurora Borealis, otherwise known as the Northern Lights.
The Nemrut caldera sits cradled within the Nemrut Volcano in Turkey, formed by the collapse of the volcano into itself, creating a large, deep crater. This dramatic formation creates a unique micro-environment, becoming home to plants and animals that thrive in the harsh conditions. Nestled within the caldera is lake Nemrut, a half-moon crater freshwater lake that further adds to the unique biodiversity of the caldera.
Bee Breeders announced the winners of the Modern Collective Living Challenge, one part of their Global Housing Crisis competition series. Participants conceived new types of accessible housing for rural China’s relocated farmers. China’s fast-paced urbanization is causing millions of rural folk to move to cities. With no designated site, successful projects need to be versatile enough to work in a variety of sites and even be adopted as a standard for addressing relocation. Winning projects were held to a high standard in their answering of the question: how can we create modern community living situations where relocated individuals are not forced into changing their way of life? Common themes in winning projects are modularity and green space.
The competition winners are listed below.
Debate rages across the country, as experts and analysts go back and forth over the idea of an affordable housing crisis in Australia. One area that all experts can agree on, however, is that Sydney is in a league of its own when it comes to property prices. Sydney comes in second to Hong Kong as having the least affordable housing in a survey of 10 major metropolitan markets.
The Guardian Australia reported figures from BIS Oxford economics showing that, as of December 2016, 42% of average disposable household income in New South Wales was being poured into monthly mortgage