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Norman Foster: The Latest Architecture and News

China as Architectural Testing Ground

13:00 - 7 September, 2011
Photo by low.lighting - http://www.flickr.com/photos/low-lighting/. Used under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>Creative Commons</a>
Photo by low.lighting - http://www.flickr.com/photos/low-lighting/. Used under Creative Commons

The emergence of China on the global economic stage has been discussed at nauseum in myriad publications. But this emergence has had an impact on the world of architecture, providing a testing ground where architects can experiment with new ideas about sustainability and urban growth. These new ideas have been realized in recently completed structures, and more are just beginning construction or have been proposed for the future. More on these new buildings after the break.

Architecture City Guide: Berlin

10:00 - 27 July, 2011
Courtesy of Flickr CC License / alexthompson. Used under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/'>Creative Commons</a>
Courtesy of Flickr CC License / alexthompson. Used under Creative Commons

This week, with the help of our readers, our Architecture City Guide is headed to Berlin. The twentieth century changed nearly all cities, but perhaps none more so than Berlin. From its destruction in World War II that left few historic buildings intact to its division until 1989 that brought together the architecture of two competing ideologies into one city, Berlin’s modern and contemporary architecture speaks to a past that seldom accompanies such recent additions. The city is filled with new and wonderful architecture that might not have found space in other cities in Europe. With that in mind, we were unable feature all our readers’ suggestions on the first go around. We will be adding to the list in the near future, so please add more of your favorites in the comment section below. Once again, thanks to all our readers for your help.

The Architecture City Guide: Berlin list and corresponding map after the break.

Video: Norman Foster Recreates Buckminster Fuller's Dymaxion Car

15:13 - 22 March, 2011

“I was privileged to collaborate with Bucky for the last 12 years of his life and this had a profound influence on my own work and thinking. Inevitably, I also gained an insight into his philosophy and achievements,” shared Lord Norman Foster.

Recreating the legendary futuristic Dymaxion Car, Foster’s No. 4 version was a lengthy and expensive two year project, but was obviously a labor of love. Buckminster Fuller’s futuristic three wheeled car was brief, with a mere three actually built. Incredibly efficient the streamlined body with long tail-fin averaged 35 miles to the gallon and could achieve 120 mph. The Zeppelin inspired design with a V8 Ford engine was intended to fly as well, Fuller’s vision of revolutionizing how people traveled.

More following the break.

West Kowloon Cultural District Selects City Park / Foster + Partners

09:30 - 12 March, 2011
© Foster + Partners by Methanoia
© Foster + Partners by Methanoia

Foster + Partners’ City Park proposal has recently been selected for the 40-hectare masterplan for West Kowloon Cultural District. Since this past August, we have been sharing the three competing shortlisted projects – OMA’s Three Villages, Rocco Design Architects’ Cultural Connect, and Foster’s City Park – and your comments have sparked great discussion concerning the advantages and disadvantages of each. The selection process for the cultural district was quite unique as the three projects, that were selected from 12 proposals, then entered a public consultation exercise. For three months, the people of the West Kowloon district had the opportunity to review and comment on the projects, which then had a strong impact on the panel’s final decision.

Design + Wine exhibit at SFMOMA

12:30 - 23 November, 2010
Zaha Hadid's Tondonia Vina Pavilion
Zaha Hadid's Tondonia Vina Pavilion

“How Wine Became Modern: Design + Wine 1976 to Now” is a brand new exhibit at the San Francisco Modern Museum of Art. Co-created and designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, the exhibit was organized by Henry Urbach, SFMOMA’s Helen Hilton Raiser Curator of Architecture and Design. Bringing attention to the wine industry and its integration with the latest artists, designers and architects the exhibit will be on display at SFMOMA until April. A main part of the exhibit is featuring the architectural spaces that house the wine making process, tastings, museums, etc. Some big name architects who have developed designs for cutting-edge wineries include: Zaha Hadid, Frank Gehry, Norman Foster, Herzog and de Meuron, Renzo Piano and Alvaro Siza.

2011 RIBA Norman Foster Travelling Scholarship Open for Entries

17:30 - 8 November, 2010
Courtesy of RIBA Norman Foster Scholarship
Courtesy of RIBA Norman Foster Scholarship

The 2011 RIBA Norman Foster Travelling Scholarship was launched today and invites applications from RIBA-accredited schools of architecture around the world. A £6,000 grant will be awarded to one student by a panel of judges which includes Norman Foster and the President of the RIBA. Regarding last year’s competition Foster stated, “we were greatly impressed with the breadth and quality of last year’s entries, but the proposals that really stood out for the jury were focused, setting out clear aims and looking afresh at a current issue. I look forward to seeing the many creative ways in which students will develop their research proposals early next year.”

City Park / Foster + Partners

21:00 - 25 August, 2010
© Foster + Partners
© Foster + Partners

Continuing with our coverage of the West Kowloon Arts District, here’s Foster+Partners’ proposal entitled City Park. The proposal is based around a 23-hectare Great Park which will hold a sampling of cultural buildings of varying scales. From the large Arena, Opera House and Exhibition Center to the smaller teahouses and small temples scattered throughout the landscape, the park will be a welcoming entity programmed to provide for the public. Lord Foster, Founder and Chairman, said, “Hong Kong is a great city and this project captures what is important about its DNA: the civic spaces, the squares, the parks, the greenery, the avenues and the small side streets. At ‘City Park’ we have created a world class setting for a new cultural city for everyone.”

More images and more about the master plan after the break.

In Progress: Sperone Westwater Gallery / Foster + Partners

17:00 - 17 August, 2010
© Foster + Partners
© Foster + Partners

We took a few shots of Foster + Partners’ latest addition to the Bowery – a new gallery to house the Sperone Westwater’s growing collection from prominent artists of different nationalities and ages. Sitting a few steps away from SANAA’s musuem, this new gallery’s CNC milled glass facade elegantly responds to its neighboring art museum. According to Foster, the gallery is “both a response to the dynamic urban character of New York’s Bowery and a desire to rethink the way in which the public engages with art in the setting of a gallery.”

Check out some photos after the break.

Happy Birthday Sir Norman Foster!

18:13 - 1 June, 2010

Huge recognition for Foster began 20 years ago. He was knighted in 1990 and appointed to the Order of Merit in 1997. He was awarded with the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 1999. In Germany he received the Order Pour le Mérite and most recently, in 2009, he was awarded the Prince of Asturias Award in the Arts category.

City Center Las Vegas: 6 LEED Gold certifications

13:57 - 25 February, 2010
CityCenter Crystals Veer Aria and Harmon
CityCenter Crystals Veer Aria and Harmon

With over 16,797,000 square feet (1,560,500 m2), the recently opened City Center Las Vegas has become one of the largest LEED certified projects in the world. The project included some of the world’s largest firms: Pelli Clarke Pelli, Kohn Pedersen Fox, Helmut Jahn, RV Architecture LLC led by Rafael Viñoly, Foster + Partners, Studio Daniel Libeskind, David Rockwell and Rockwell Group, and Gensler.

City Center
City Center

Inside the complex we find several towers, with hotels, casino and residences, from which the Mandarin Oriental, ARIA Resort’s hotel tower, ARIA’s convention center and theater, Vdara Hotel & Spa, Crystals and Veer towers have received LEED Gold certification.

More photos and information about each building after the break.

AD Round Up: Foster + Partners

18:30 - 10 July, 2009
AD Round Up: Foster + Partners

The works of Foster+Partners are recognized worldwide. In this Round Up, we show you an office in the UK and Amsterdam, an airport in Beijing, a pavillion for Shanghai 2010 and a superyacht.

Spaceport America began construction last Friday

13:00 - 22 June, 2009

Spaceport America, the first spaceport ever began construction last Friday in New Mexico. The spaceport, designed by Foster + Partners and URS Corporation will host commercial operations by private space travel companies, like Virgin Galactic.

The 110,000-plus square foot facility will use cost-effective, energy-efficient green building practices and will be built to be LEED-certified. From earth-tubes that will pre-condition the air to reduce HVAC costs by 50-70% to solar thermal panels on the roof for hot water to the embedded in-floor loop system, Spaceport America is both unique and iconic in terms of visual and environmental design.

Seen at Gizmodo. More images after the break.

Foster and Partners 5-star Hotel in the UK gets approval

18:00 - 21 April, 2009
image © Foster + Partners
image © Foster + Partners

One of the latest projects by Foster and Partners, a 5-star hotel and conference center near the Heathrow airport in the UK, just got the city Mayor´s approval.

The project, developed by Riva Properties, has 60,000sqm aprox distributed among 13 stories. Some of these are sunken, resulting on an exterior height of only 25m.

The rooms are contained within six pavilions above the ground, linked by bridges and wrapped in a unifying glass envelope, which not only acts as a barrier to aircraft noise but also to flood the public spaces with daylight, contributing to a highly efficient energy strategy.

The entrance lobby has a floating glass deck with views down to the sunken restaurant level, shallow pool and waterfall. This restaurant floor is accessed via a timber walkway and incorporates a business centre, as well as a variety of venues to eat and drink. The double-height conference facilities, which have their own reception to allow separate access from street-level, encircle a top-lit atrium that brings natural light deep into the building and down to the lower levels.

More images after the break.

Finalists for the National Museum of African American History and Culture

12:30 - 3 April, 2009
Foster + Partners and URS
Foster + Partners and URS

The Smithsonian Institute has announced the finalists for the new National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington D.C. The museum will be located at the end of the Washington Mall, being the latest addition to this location. The design concepts will be on show at the castle building until April 6. The, a jury will select a winner. The museum will open in 2015, at a cost of 500 million dollars.

Finalists are: Foster + Partners and URS Diller Scofidio + Renfro in association with Klingstubbins The Freelon Group, Adjaye Associates and Davis Brody Bond Devrouax & Purnell and Pei Cobb Freed & Partners Moody Nolan in association with Antoine Predock Architects Moshe Safdie and Associates in association with Sulton Campbell Britt & Associates

Seen at designboom. More images after the break.

Harmon Hotel in Las Vegas by Foster and Partners gets cut (and not due to the crisis)

21:00 - 18 February, 2009

And we just saw the news that the project got “cut”, but in a literal way. It wasn´t because of the economical crisis, but actually due to construction flaws: 15 floors of wrongly installed rebar. This forced the developer to cut down the height -removing the condos portion of the building- resulting on a 28 stories tall building, instead of 49 as planned.

Winner announced for the Tour La Signal at La Defense, Paris: Ateliers Jean Nouvel

10:00 - 3 June, 2008

The La Defense is a 160 ha business district in the west of Paris, currently under a renewal plan to strengthen its place among the great international business districts. The plan is managed by the EPAD (The Public Establishment for Installation of La Défense), an organization formed by local authorities, government and neighbors focused on developing the La Defense for the best interests of its 20.000 residents and 150.000 inhabitants in floating population.

The renewal includes several high rise sustainable towers. One of this towers, the Tour Signal, entered an international closed competition for teams of architects/investors/developers, on which EPAD didn’t impose a site. The candidates were thus able to choose their sites either from among the entrances to the business district (South Gate and West Gate), either from sites subject to demolition operations. The Tour Signal will thus endow the business district with a new landmark in 2013.

The finalists for this project were Jacques Ferrier Architectures, Foster + Partners Ltd, Studio Libeskind Architect, Ateliers Jean Nouvel and Wilmotte et Associes SA.

And a few days ago, the winner was announced: Ateliers Jean Nouvel, project shown on the video above.

More pictures of the Jean Nouvel proposal, and the rest of the candidates/finalists after the jump.

Willis Headquarters at Lime Street / Foster + Partners

18:37 - 17 May, 2008

Foster + Partners just informed us that the new Willis headquarters at Lime Street in London is complete. As usual, the firm lead by Sir Norman Foster developed a urban piece that integrates with the city at street level and features environmental strategies to reduce its energy consumption and carbon footprint.

This two buildings are developed as a series of overlapping curved shells while its section is arranged in three steps. The roof terraces overlooking the plaza on the lower two steps are directly accessible from the office spaces. Both buildings have a central core to provide open floor plates and maximum flexibility in use.

The entire development is visually unified by its highly reflective façade. The pressed form of the panels and their mica finish give them depth and texture. A dynamic effect is established through the interplay of solid and glazed panels arranged in a saw-tooth pattern, the fins also increase insulation while reducing glare and solar gain.

Together with the highly efficient services equipment and systems in the building, the façade design is integral to the energy strategy, which is rated BREEAM Excellent. What surprised me is the parking capacity: 42 Cars, 88 motorcycles, 264 bicycles

According to Sir Norman Foster this building has come out of a very different design process, yet continues the practice’s commitment to developing humane, flexible and dynamic workplaces that are both informed by, and woven into, the urban fabric. Foster has some very interesting approaches when it comes to sustainable design and urban spaces. I recommend checking his presentation at DLD we posted last week.