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Habitat 67: The Latest Architecture and News

Open Air: New Ways We Can Live Together in Nature

“We need a new spatial contract." This is the call of Hashim Sarkis, curator of the Venice Biennale 2021, as an invitation for architects to imagine new spaces in which we can live together. Between a move towards urban flight and global housing crises, the growth of more low-rise, dense developments may provide an answer in the countryside. Turning away from single family homes in rural areas and suburbs, modern housing projects are exploring new models of shared living in nature.

© Shu He© HG Esch© Christian Wöckinger© Dio Guna Putra+ 13

Design Disruption Explores High Density Housing with Moshe Safdie and Ma Yansong

A new webcast and podcast series, Design Disruption, has been launched by architectural writer Sam Lubell and social entrepreneur Prathima Manohar. In a partnership with ArchDaily, the first episode today at 11 am (EST) on ArchDaily, YouTube and Facebook. This episode explores high density housing with guests Moshe Safdie, founder of Safdie Architects, and Ma Yansong, founder of MAD architects. The goal of the series is to provide an international perspective on disruptive issues with guests from different continents.

© Michal RonnenCourtesy of MAD Architects© Edward HendricksCourtesy of MAD Architects+ 10

This Week in Architecture: Reduce, Reuse, Rethink

It's easy to feel overwhelmed by the massive production of architecture today. Scroll through ArchDaily for more than a minute and even we'd forgive you for losing track of it all. But what seems like an endless scroll of architectural production doesn't quite fit with the popular movements surrounding resource sharing and community. 

Hidden among the mass production that has defined architecture in the last century is a germ - one that seems to be marching to the forefront of practice today. More and more designers seem to be taking on locally-focused and/or adaptive reuse works. Award shortlists today highlight not icons by recognizable names, but sensitive international works that are notable for their process as much as their product. 

The common image of the architect may be of one obsessed with ego and newness, but practice today doesn't bear that out as much as it used to. This week's news touched on issues of reduction, reuse, and a radical rethink what architecture is in the 21st century. 

Safdie Architects Completes an Extensive Restoration of Unit at Habitat 67

Safdie Architects has completed a comprehensive renovation of Moshe Safdie’s unit at the iconic Habitat 67 in Montreal, Canada. The 10th floor unit of the designated monument was restored to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Habitat 67, in conjunction with a 2017 exhibition of Safdie’s work titled “Habitat ‘67 vers l’avenir : The Shape of Things to Come.”

Two years worth of repairs to the duplex unit included addressing decades worth of water damage, extensive interior restoration, and technical upgrades to align the building’s systems to 21st century standards of sustainability and energy conservation.

© Marc Cramer + Thomas Miau© Marc Cramer + Thomas Miau© Marc Cramer + Thomas Miau© Marc Cramer + Thomas Miau+ 11

Moshe Safdie Discusses His Unbuilt Work and Timeless Meaning In Architecture

While Moshe Safdie may be more well known for the bold forms defining his portfolio of built projects—ranging from the National Gallery of Canada and the horizontal Raffles City Chongqing to the iconic Habitat 67—the architect considers his unbuilt works as important, if not more. Safdie ponders the role of these projects and more in PLANE-SITE’s latest addition to the series Time-Space-Existence.

Canada Post Commemorates Canada’s 150th Anniversary with Habitat 67 Stamp

In honor of the 50th anniversary of the 1967 International and Universal Exposition or Expo 67 in Quebec, Canada Post, and renowned architect Moshe Safdie have revealed a celebratory stamp depicting Safdie’s iconic Habitat 67, which was unveiled as the Canadian Pavilion for the world fair.

The housing complex, commissioned by the Canadian government and the city of Montreal, now holds the status as a National Heritage Site and its commemorative stamp is the first of ten to be issued by Canada Post in celebration of the country’s 150th anniversary. Each stamp highlights a key moment in Canada’s history since its centennial in 1967.

The Architectural Lab: A History Of World Expos

The Universal Exposition of 1889. Image © Wikimedia Commons
The Universal Exposition of 1889. Image © Wikimedia Commons

World Expos have long been important in advancing architectural innovation and discourse. Many of our most beloved monuments were designed and constructed specifically for world’s fairs, only to remain as iconic fixtures in the cities that host them. But what is it about Expos that seem to create such lasting architectural landmarks, and is this still the case today? Throughout history, each new Expo offered architects an opportunity to present radical ideas and use these events as a creative laboratory for testing bold innovations in design and building technology. World’s fairs inevitably encourage competition, with every country striving to put their best foot forward at almost any cost. This carte blanche of sorts allows architects to eschew many of the programmatic constraints of everyday commissions and concentrate on expressing ideas in their purest form. Many masterworks such as Mies van der Rohe’s German Pavilion (better known as the Barcelona Pavilion) for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition are so wholeheartedly devoted to their conceptual approach that they could only be possible in the context of an Exposition pavilion.

To celebrate the opening of Expo Milano 2015 tomorrow, we’ve rounded up a few of history’s most noteworthy World Expositions to take a closer look at their impact on architectural development.

1964 New York World’s Fair . Image via People for the Pavillion websiteBuckminster Fuller's Dome. Image © Flickr user abdallahhBarcelona Pavilion. Image © Gili MerinKiyonari Kikutake's Landmark Tower+ 19