As the world recognizes Earth Day 2019, the public discourse is increasingly dominated by citizen action across the world manifesting a widespread fear and frustration at a perceived lack of action by governments and officials to confront the issue forthrightly. From the Extinction Rebellion protests that have gripped London, to school student strikes across 125 countries, global cities are increasingly finding themselves on the front line of a battle to limit the effects of global warming.
Scape: The Latest Architecture and News
Studio Gang and SCAPE has unveiled further details of their plans to transform the Memphis waterfront with the new Tom Lee Park. One of five zones included in Studio Gang's six-mile masterplan for the riverfront, the park has been developed with input from over 4,000 people, including community groups, stakeholders, and local students from North and South Memphis.
The proposal for Tom Lee Park draws inspiration from the Mississippi River, “reimagined as a vibrant and dynamic civic space that fosters positive encounters and civic pride, restores natural ecology and conditions, and better connects the city to the river.” New architecture floating above the landscape is inspired by historic structures that once dotted the riverfront, such as terminal buildings, grain elevators, and barges.
As part of our 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale coverage, we present the completed United States Pavilion. To read the initial proposal, refer to our previously published posts, “Curators and Theme Announced for US Pavilion at 2018 Venice Biennale” and "Studio Gang, Diller Scofidio + Renfro Among Exhibitors Selected for US Pavilion at 2018 Venice Biennale"
The pavilion representing the United States at this year’s biennale brings together the work of seven different transdisciplinary teams who each prepared an installation addressing the concept of citizenship at a different scale. Entitled Dimensions of Citizenship, the exhibition is intended to challenge the definition and conception of citizenship, examining issues and citing examples on the scale of the citizen, civitas, region, nation, globe, network and cosmos. The pavilion was commissioned on behalf of the US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs by the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Chicago.
One year after the launch of Resilient by Design's Bay Area Challenge, led by TLS Landscape has presented the final nine design concepts. The Bay Area Challenge launched with a call to action to "bring together local residents, community organizations, public officials and local, national, and international experts to develop innovative solutions that will strengthen our region's resilience to sea level rise, severe storms, flooding, and earthquakes." The idea formulated as a “blueprint for resilience” that can be replicated and utilized locally and globally. Other urban challenges will also be addressed, including housing, transport, health and economic disparity as a means of not just protecting the current regions, but strengthening them.
Read on for more about each of the final design concepts.
Studio Gang has revealed the design of their $70 Million expansion of the Arkansas Arts Center, located in historic MacArthur Park in the state capital of Little Rock. Working with associate architects Polk Stanley Wilcox and landscape architecture firm SCAPE, Studio Gang has envisioned a sweeping roof structure that will connect the existing architecturally disparate museum pavilions into a cohesive whole.
Elon Musk, Architects David Benjamin and Kate Orff Among Rolling Stone's "25 People Shaping the Future"
In their latest issue, Rolling Stone has named Elon Musk "The Architect of Tomorrow," as well as listed architects David Benjamin and Kate Orff as two of their "25 People Shaping the Future in Tech, Science, Medicine, Activism and More."
From a pool of over fifty submissions, Resilient by Design have chosen ten winning teams to collaborate with engineers, climate change experts, designers, architects and community members to imagine a better future for The Bay Area in the face of potentially devastating climate change. The winning teams AECOM, BIG, Bionic, TLS, Field Operations, HASSELL, Mithun, Base Landscape, SCAPE and Gensler will spend the next year on a combination of collaborative research projects and site-specific conceptual design solutions.
Studio Gang, Diller Scofidio + Renfro Among Exhibitors Selected for US Pavilion at 2018 Venice Biennale
The curatorial team for the U.S. Pavilion at the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale have announced the seven designers who will create the pavilion’s main exhibitions. Consisting of architects, landscape architects, artists and designers, the group will produce responses to the theme of Dimensions of Citizenship, exploring “the meaning of citizenship as a cluster of rights and responsibilities at the intersection of legal, political, economic, and societal affiliations.”
The seven exhibitors include:
How the Architectural League's "Emerging Voices" Award Predicted 30 Years of Architectural Development
For over 30 years, the Emerging Voices prize given by the Architectural League of New York has offered the architecture world a glimpse into the future, showcasing radical ideas from architects at a crucial stage in their career development. In this excerpt, the opening to her essay "Idea: Claiming Territories" in the newly-released book "Thirty Years of Emerging Voices: Idea, Form, Resonance," Ashley Schafer discusses how the prize has acted as a litmus test for architectural culture, with laureates often presaging trends and sometimes even singular projects years or decades before they occurred in the profession at large.
"Don't fight forces, use them." - R. Buckminster Fuller
SCAPE’s comprehensive climate change adaptation and community development project, Living Breakwaters has been announced as winner of the 2014 Fuller Challenge, “socially responsible design’s highest award.” Announced by the Buckminster Fuller Institute (BFI), the proposal was selected over seven shortlisted humanitarian initiatives and will receive a $100,000 prize for their innovative solution to solve one of humanity’s most pressing problems.
"Living Breakwaters is about dissipating and working with natural energy rather than fighting it. It is on the one hand an engineering and infrastructure-related intervention, but it also has a unique biological function as well. The project team understand that you cannot keep back coastal flooding in the context of climate change, but what you can do is ameliorate the force and impact of 100 and 500 year storm surges to diminish the damage through ecological interventions, while simultaneously catalyzing dialog to nurture future stewards of the built environment," said Bill Browning of Terrapin Bright Green, a 2014 senior advisor and jury member.
More on Living Breakwaters, after the break.
SCAPE and Rogers Marvel have been unanimously selected from 27 international applicants to create a schematic design for one of the most visited destinations on the Mississippi River: Water Works in downtown Minneapolis. The SCAPE-Roger Marvel Team, which also includes New York-based James Lima Planning + Design and Minneapolis-based SRF Consulting, will be responsible for transforming the historically significant Central Mississippi Riverfront Regional Park, within which the Water Works district exists, with a master plan based on a series of “visionary” parks and trails.
New York-based SCAPE/Landscape Architecture has beat out 4 national/international firms, including JDS Architects, to design a Masterplan for the Town Branch Commons, a two-mile linear stretch of green space that will connect the eastern and western sections of downtown Lexington, Kentucky. The Competition has garnered attention for its interesting challenge: to bring the Town Branch Creek, a river which has been underground for over 100 years, to the surface.
Jeff Fugate, President and COO of the Lexington Downtown Development Authority, which sponsored the competition, noted that “The [five-person] jury had five excellent choices, but SCAPE clearly was above the competition.” Aaron Betsky, the director of the Cincinnati Art Museum and the jury chairman also explained the choice: “As a jury, we felt inspired and excited by the breath of the designers’ vision, while we felt confident that they would be able to implement their plan."
Kate Orff, founder of SCAPE, notes that the firm is looking forward to working with the community to make the vision a reality: “SCAPE is so thrilled to be a part of this exciting initiative to revive Town Branch, make new connections downtown, and improve the quality of life in Lexington. We’ve been inspired by the realities and conditions on the ground and by the potential of water to inform the design of new urban landscapes.”
Find out more about the Masterplan, after the break...
Kate Orff shares her vision of ‘oyster-tecture’ utilizing oysters as an agent for urban change. Focusing on the New York Harbor, Orff, architect and founding principal of Manhattan based studio SCAPE, demonstrates how we can rethink our landscapes, both the green and blue spaces, linking nature and humanity for mutual benefit.
Museo Nazionale dell’Ebraismo Italiano e della Shoah / Studio Arco, -Scape, Michael Gruber & Kulapat Yantrasast
The collaboration of Studio Arco -scape architects with Michael Gruber and Kulapat Yantrasast shared with us their project, Museo Nazionale dell’Ebraismo Italiano e della Shoah, for an international competition open to the European community. Upon believing that a museum is an object for the city, the MEIS is a Memorial, as well as a place where one can experience the presence of Jewish culture in Italy. At the same time, it is a symbol: the symbol of the city, of an historically involved territory, but also a testimony of common cultural roots, becoming a monument recognized by any citizen and religious community. More images and architects’ description after the break.