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NEXT Architects' Zalige Bridge Transforms Into Stepping Stones During Flood Conditions

12:30 - 23 January, 2018
NEXT Architects' Zalige Bridge Transforms Into Stepping Stones During Flood Conditions, © NEXT Architects. Photography: Rutger Hollander
© NEXT Architects. Photography: Rutger Hollander

In a country famous for its below sea level towns, combating flooding has been a key challenge for Dutch designers for centuries, resulting in the construction of numerous dikes, levees and seawalls across the country. But when tasked with creating a new pedestrian link across an urban river park in Nijmegen, NEXT Architects and H+N+S Landscape Architects decided to try a different approach: to celebrate the natural event by designing a stepping stone bridge that only becomes useful in high water conditions.

Known as the Zalige Bridge, the structure was completed in March 2016, but only just was given the opportunity to prove itself in January 2018, when water levels in the park rose to 12 m NAP+, the highest point in 15 years.

© NEXT Architects. Photography: Jan Daanen © NEXT Architects. Photography: Rutger Hollander © NEXT Architects. Photography: Jeroen Bosch © NEXT Architects. Photography: Rutger Hollander + 22

World's Largest Air Purifier Completes Successful Trial Run in Xi'an, China

16:00 - 16 January, 2018
World's Largest Air Purifier Completes Successful Trial Run in Xi'an, China, The 100-meter-tall air purification tower in Xi’an, China – believed to be the world’s largest air purifier. Image via South China Morning Post
The 100-meter-tall air purification tower in Xi’an, China – believed to be the world’s largest air purifier. Image via South China Morning Post

A 100-meter-tall air purification tower in Xi’an, China – believed to be the world’s largest air purifier – has significantly improved city air quality, results from its preliminary run suggest.

According to researchers from the Institute of Earth Environment at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the tower has managed to produce more than 10 million cubic metres (353 million cubic feet) of clean air per day since it was launched a few months ago. In the 10-square-kilometer (3.86-square-mile) observed area of the city, smog ratings have been reduced to moderate levels even on severely polluted days, an improvement over the city’s previous hazardous conditions.

RSHP and Aedas Unveil Boundary Crossing Building for World's Longest Motorway Bridge in China

14:00 - 15 January, 2018
RSHP and Aedas Unveil Boundary Crossing Building for World's Longest Motorway Bridge in China, Courtesy of HKBC Construction
Courtesy of HKBC Construction

Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners (RSHP) and Aedas have unveiled the design of a new boundary crossing that will serve as an important transportation exchange point within the Pearl River Delta, linking Hong Kong, Macau and mainland China. Already under construction, the project is expected to be completed in 2019. 

Courtesy of Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners Courtesy of Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners Courtesy of HKBC Construction Courtesy of HKBC Construction + 10

These GIFs Compare Cities' Metro Maps to Their Real Life Geography

12:00 - 29 December, 2017

Metro and subway maps can tell us a lot about cities. For example, by comparing metro maps from different cities, you might be able to understand those cities' relative size or level of development. Or, by comparing a metro map to an earlier version from the same city, you can learn about the pace of development being experienced in that city. What these "maps" rarely tell you with any reliability, though, is the actual geography of the city itself.

In a fascinating series of posts over at /r/dataisbeautiful earlier this year, Reddit users created GIFs comparing the official metro maps of cities around the world with the real geography those maps correspond to. The results show the incredible changes that cities are subjected to in the name of visual clarity: in cities such as London, Tokyo, and Berlin, transit maps expand the urban core, masking the density at these regions' centers; in other cities such as Washington DC, shortened lines hide the extent of the city's suburbs; while in some cities, entire neighborhoods are moved to the other side of the city to make the map layout more attractive (we're looking at you, Prague). Read on to see 11 of the best creations by Reddit users.

Georgia's Kutaisi Airport Taps UNStudio for Terracing Expansion Just 4 Years After its Opening

12:00 - 27 November, 2017

Less than five years after the opening of Georgia’s Kutaisi ‘King David the Builder’ International Airport, rapidly increasing usage (from 12,915 passengers a year in 2012 to more than 300,000 in 2016) has prompted the airport to begin plans for an expansion that could serve as many as 1,000,000 passengers by 2020.

To achieve these goals, the airport has returned to the architects who designed the original structure, UNStudio (with local architects Artstudio Project), to develop a unique airport concept featuring terraced waiting areas and a rooftop viewing garden.

© VA-render © VA-render © VA-render Photo of the existing Kutaisi ‘King David the Builder’ International Airport / UNStudio. Image © Nakani Mamasakhlisi + 9

Foster + Partners Selected to Design Marseille Airport Extension

12:00 - 24 November, 2017
Foster + Partners Selected to Design Marseille Airport Extension, Courtesy of Foster + Partners
Courtesy of Foster + Partners

Foster + Partners has won the competition to design a new extension to Marseille Airport that will allow the building to process up to 12 million passengers a year. The 2-phase design will add a new central pavilion to the existing building—which comprises the original 1960s structure designed by Fernand Pouillon, and a 1992 extension by Richard Rogers—and a new pier to provide access to the planes.

Tesla Unveils Electric Cargo Truck that Could Change the Future of Shipping

14:00 - 17 November, 2017
Tesla Unveils Electric Cargo Truck that Could Change the Future of Shipping, Courtesy of Tesla
Courtesy of Tesla

At last night’s keynote address, Tesla unveiled the company’s first electric-powered large cargo vehicle, the Tesla Semi, providing a first look at how the shipping industry of the future could operate.

Employing the same sleek forms that define their roadster and sedan models, the Tesla Semi is designed “specifically around the driver,” with ergonomically-designed stairs for easier entry and exit, full standing height interior, and a centrally-position driver’s seat for optimal visibility. Touchscreen displays will provide the driver with heads-up navigation and data monitoring, while a blind spot protection will increase driver awareness on the road.

Courtesy of Tesla Courtesy of Tesla Courtesy of Tesla Courtesy of Tesla + 17

How Bridges Evolved Into Signifiers of Urban Identity

09:30 - 2 November, 2017
How Bridges Evolved Into Signifiers of Urban Identity, Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, Dallas, Texas. Image © Greig Cranna
Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, Dallas, Texas. Image © Greig Cranna

Increasingly close collaboration between architects and engineers has caused an explosion in bridge design over the last few decades, resulting in structures that are both bold yet rational. As a result, cities have exploited bridges as great monuments of design, to foster pride in the residents and promote themselves as a destination for tourists. These ideas have inspired photographer Greig Cranna as he travels the world, capturing the elegance of today's bridge infrastructure.

Cranna has been documenting some of his stunning photography on Instagram, collating it over the past 20 months into a forthcoming book, Sky Architecture—The Transformative Magic of Today's Bridges. In capturing these entrancing structures, the photos show the impact of the bridges as an addition to the landscape and revel in their contemporary silhouettes and designs.

Sundial Bridge, Redding, Ca.. Image © Greig Cranna Lanier Bridge, Brunswick, Georgia. Image © Greig Cranna Bond Bridge, Kansas City, Mo. Image © Greig Cranna Sunshine Skyway Bridge, Tampa, Fla . Image © Greig Cranna + 21

Giraffes, Telegraphs And Hero Of Alexandria - Urban Design By Narration

08:10 - 31 October, 2017
Giraffes, Telegraphs And Hero Of Alexandria - Urban Design By Narration, front and back cover
front and back cover

In this book, stories portray the production of our built environment, guided by three characters: Giraffes, Telegraphs, and Hero of Alexandria. Having developed its long neck to reach the leaves of high trees, the giraffe represents the vernacular approach to architecture, in which construction follows forces of nature. The telegraph, in contrast, embodies the modernist paradigm, in which technology reigns supreme and forces nature to adapt. Inspired by Hero of Alexandria, we subscribe to a third paradigm – using technology to optimize nature and, inversely, nature to assimilate technology.

The book is a collection of 13 architecture and urban research

How a Norwegian Infrastructure Project is Using Virtual Reality to Improve Public Buy-In

09:30 - 29 October, 2017
How a Norwegian Infrastructure Project is Using Virtual Reality to Improve Public Buy-In, The complex rail project will involve building 10 kilometers of new track, two tunnels, and one new transit station. Image Courtesy of Bane NOR
The complex rail project will involve building 10 kilometers of new track, two tunnels, and one new transit station. Image Courtesy of Bane NOR

This article was originally published by Aurodesk's Redshift publication as "Norwegian Rail Project Adopts Immersive Design for Public Engagement and Buy-in."

For a disruptive, 10-kilometer-long rail project that won’t even break ground until 2019, public officials and local residents of Moss, just south of Oslo, Norway, have been given an unusually vivid preview that, in the past, only the designers would have seen at this stage.

“We set up a showroom in the city where the public can come to view the project in a theater setting, and the feedback has been quite nice,” says Hans Petter Sjøen, facility management coordinator for Bane NOR, the year-old, state-owned company responsible for developing, operating, and maintaining the Norwegian national railway infrastructure. “Project members also have been receptive. They tell us that they have seen dimensions on the big screen that they did not see in person.”

Germany's Newest Transportation Pavilion Features Dynamic Roof

06:00 - 24 October, 2017
Germany's Newest Transportation Pavilion Features Dynamic Roof, Courtesy of J. MAYER H.
Courtesy of J. MAYER H.

J. MAYER H., in partnership with Architekten, celebrated the groundbreaking ceremony for their competition-winning Pavillon am Ring Project in Freiburg, Germany. Located at the edge of Freiburg’s historic district, this new tram stop will feature a café and dynamic roof structure.

See New York's Old Kosciuszko Bridge Implode in This 360 Video

16:00 - 2 October, 2017

In the latest in their Daily360 series, the New York Times takes a look at this past weekend's demolition of the old Kosciusko Bridge on Newton Creek between the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens. Built in 1939, the steel truss bridge had become a major bottleneck for traffic over the past 8 decades, prompting the state government to invest in a new cable-stayed design. The first span of that bridge opened in April, with a second span to be built over the path of the former bridge.

 “This is an area that was polluted from the industrial manufacturing economy,” said New York State Governor Cuomo. “We’re cleaning it up, but I think the crown jewel is going to be that new Kosciuszko bridge.”

The Astonishing (Vanishing) Stepwells of India

08:00 - 8 September, 2017

Thirty years ago, on my first visit to India, I glanced over an ordinary wall. The ground fell away and was replaced by an elaborate, man-made chasm the length and depth of which I couldn’t fathom. It was disorienting and even transgressive; we are, after all, conditioned to look up at architecture, not down into it, and I had no clue as to what I was looking at. Descending into the subterranean space only augmented the disorientation, with telescoping views and ornate, towering columns that paraded five stories into the earth. At the bottom, above-ground noises became hushed, harsh light had dimmed, and the intense mid-day heat cooled considerably. It was like stepping into another world.

Ujala Baoli: Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Image © Victoria Lautman Navghan Kuvo Vav: Junagadh, Gujarat. Image © Victoria Lautman Batris Kotha Vav: Kapadvanj, Gujarat. Image © Victoria Lautman Indaravali Baoli: Fatehpur Sikri, Rajasthan. Image © Victoria Lautman + 15

Los Angeles Icon Angel's Flight Reopens After Renovations

15:01 - 1 September, 2017

Los Angeles’ beloved downtown icon Angel’s Flight has reopened for the first time in four years after undergoing extensive renovations to improve the safety and longevity of the attraction. Sometimes referred to as the “world’s shortest railroad,” the hillside structure is actually a funicular system – both cars share a single cable and are propelled forward in part with the potential energy afforded from the counterweight of the opposing car.

New York's $4 Billion Tappan Zee Bridge Project Set to Open to the Public

16:40 - 24 August, 2017
New York's $4 Billion Tappan Zee Bridge Project Set to Open to the Public, The bridge today (Aug 24). Image Courtesy of New York Governor's Office
The bridge today (Aug 24). Image Courtesy of New York Governor's Office

The long-awaited replacement for New York City’s longest bridge, the Tappan Zee, is set to open to the public on Friday, announced Governor Andrew Cuomo. After four years of construction, the first of the $4 billion dollar project’s twin two-span cable-stayed structures will welcome automobile as well as pedestrian and bicycle traffic for the first time.

The bridge today (Aug 24). Image Courtesy of New York Governor's Office The bridge today (Aug 24). Image Courtesy of New York Governor's Office Conceptual renderings of the bridge. Image Courtesy of New York State Thruway Authority Conceptual renderings of the bridge. Image Courtesy of New York State Thruway Authority + 11

Construction Begins on Penn Station's Moynihan Train Hall Transformation

14:20 - 18 August, 2017
Construction Begins on Penn Station's Moynihan Train Hall Transformation, Courtesy of New York State Governor's Office
Courtesy of New York State Governor's Office

Construction has begun on Penn Station’s fast-tracked Moynihan Train Hall project has begun, announced New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo in a press conference.

Located within the existing James A. Farley Building (across from the existing Penn Station entrance), the new 255,000-square-foot Train Hall will serve as a new concourse for Amtrak and Long Island Railroad passengers, while an additional 700,000-square-feet will be dedicated to commercial, retail and dining spaces.

Courtesy of New York State Governor's Office Courtesy of New York State Governor's Office Courtesy of New York State Governor's Office Courtesy of New York State Governor's Office + 11

Behind India's Ambitious Plan to Create the World's Longest River

09:30 - 16 August, 2017
Behind India's Ambitious Plan to Create the World's Longest River, The town of Orchha on the banks of the Betwa River, India. Image © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/azwegers/6309463151'>Flickr user Arian Zwegers</a> licensed under <a href=' https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'> CC BY 2.0</a>
The town of Orchha on the banks of the Betwa River, India. Image © Flickr user Arian Zwegers licensed under CC BY 2.0

Against the backdrop of an ever-increasing number of its farmers committing suicides, and its cities crumbling under intensifying pressure on their water resources—owing to their rapidly growing populations—India has revived its incredibly ambitious Interlinking of Rivers (ILR) project which aims to create a nation-wide water-grid twice the length of the Nile. The $168 billion project, first envisioned almost four decades ago, entails the linkage of thirty-seven of the country’s rivers through the construction of thirty canals and three-thousand water reservoirs. The chief objective is to address India’s regional inequity in water availability174 billion cubic meters of water is proposed to be transported across river basins, from potentially water-surplus to water-deficit areas.

The project is presented by the Indian government as the only realistic means to increase the country’s irrigation potential and per-capita water storage capacity. However, it raises ecological concerns of gargantuan proportions: 104,000 hectares of forest land will be affected, leading to the desecration of natural ecosystems. Experts in hydrology also question the scientific basis of treating rivers as “mere conduits of water.” Furthermore, the fear of large-scale involuntary human displacement—an estimated 1.5 million people—likely to be caused by the formation of water reservoirs is starting to materialize into a popular uprising.

Call for Entries: A|N Best of Design Awards 2017

17:43 - 8 August, 2017
Call for Entries: A|N Best of Design Awards 2017

Be seen by 1,000,000 A|N readers and Members of the A/E/C Design Community! Our Fifth Annual Best Of Design Awards is a unique project-based awards program that showcases great buildings and building elements.