Skidmore, Owings & Merrill have broken ground on Alárò City, a new masterplan development that will connect to Lagos in southwest Nigeria. The mixed-use model community will feature an international trade gateway with a new seaport and airport. Designed for the Lagos State Government and Africa’s largest urban developer Rendeavour, the project is made to boost foreign direct investment to create an economic and cultural hub for West Africa.
Som: The Latest Architecture and News
Humanity has become obsessed with breaking its limits, creating new records only to break them again and again. In fact, our cities’ skylines have always been defined by those in power during every period in history. At one point churches left their mark, followed by public institutions and in the last few decades, it's commercial skyscrapers that continue to stretch taller and taller.
But when it comes to defining which buildings are the tallest it can get complicated. Do antennas and other gadgets on top of the building count as extra meters? What happens if the last floor is uninhabitable? The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) has developed their own system for classifying tall buildings, measuring from the “level of the lowest, significant, open-air, pedestrian entrance to the architectural top of the building, including spires, but not including antennae, signage, flag poles or other functional-technical equipment.” Using this system more than 3,400 buildings have been categorized as over 150 meters tall.
Five design teams have been selected to present their ideas for the Chicago O'Hare Airport Global Terminal and Global Concourse expansion. The designs are on display at an exhibition opened by Mayor Rahm Emanuel at the Chicago Architecture Center. Teams include Fentress-EXP-Brook-Garza, Foster Epstein Moreno, Studio ORD, SOM and Santiago Calatrava. Known as O’Hare 21, the project represents O’Hare’s first major overhaul in 25 years.
Architecture firm SOM has designed Kinematic Sculpture, an origami-like pavilion installation for Chicago Design Week. Exploring kinematics as the science of motion, the sculpture was formed as one of the firm's ongoing interdisciplinary research projects. As a test in integrated design, the structure aims to establish ideas that foster new architectural and structural solutions for pressing challenges in the built environment.
Studio Gang, BIG, Calatrava and SOM are among twelve leading architecture teams vying to work on the Chicago O'Hare International Airport expansion. The city’s request for qualifications calls for demolishing O'Hare's Terminal 2 to replace it with a global concourse and terminal for both domestic and international flights from United and American Airlines. The city’s Department of Procurement Services estimates the total costs of the expansion process (from design through construction) will cost an approximate $8.7 billion. Known as O’Hare 21, the project represents O’Hare’s first major overhaul in 25 years.
The architecture firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill have broken ground on Block 9, an 18-story mixed use tower in the heart of downtown Fargo, North Dakota. Inspired by the the prairies, the development was designed to reflect the scale of the city and surrounding buildings. The project includes an expansive public plaza with retail, office, hotel, and residential programming, and will make use of timber and local stone. Developed by Block 9 Partners, a partnership of Kilbourne Group and R.D. Offutt Company, the mixed-use tower will transform Fargo’s skyline.
The MAK Center for Art and Architecture in Los Angeles, in partnership with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM), is hosting a panel discussion on the intersection of art, engineering, and architecture. Set in the beautiful outdoor courtyard of the historic Schindler House in West Hollywood, the event brings together a variety of experts to discuss historical and contemporary positions regarding this theme.
People are moving into urban centers at an unprecedented rate. According to the United Nations, the world's urban population has increased from 751 million in 1950 to 4.2 billion in 2018. By 2050, an additional 2.5 billion people are expected to reside in urban areas. In response to this rapid urban growth, designers are challenged to create sustainable and resilient spaces that accommodate complex human needs, both necessary and desired.
World-renowned architecture, interior design, engineering, and urban planning firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) invites educators and students from across the U.S. to engage in the 2018 SOM Foundation Research Prize: "Humanizing High Density." The SOM Foundation Research Prize is awarded to a faculty-led interdisciplinary design research proposal "with the potential to advance the practice of architecture, structures, urban design and related design disciplines."
This article was originally published by Metropolis Magazine as "SOM Explains Exactly How a Raccoon Scaled Its St. Paul Skyscraper."
After completing Town Square, a mixed-use, double-tower complex in the heart of St. Paul, Minnesota in 1980, the late architect Donald Smith of SOM told Architectural Record magazine, “We must reorient our attention to the center [of] cities to save them.”
Smith’s words were prophetic, it turns out, but not in the way he may have expected.
Last month, Town Square—now known as UBS Plaza—captured the attention of the globe as a scraggly, wayward raccoon climbed up its southern tower’s 25 stories.
This morning, planning permission was awarded for the construction of 100 Leadenhall Street, an SOM-designed skyscraper in the eastern cluster of skyscrapers in the City of London. At 263.4 meters tall, the building will be the third tallest in the cluster, trailing only 1 Undershaft (305 meters), which is approved but yet to begin construction, and 22 Bishopsgate (278 meters), which is currently under construction. The Shard, at 310 meters, is also nearby on the south of the river.
Not so long ago, Lulu Li was in a classroom in graduate school, inspired by her education, the buildings around her, and a childhood dream. Since joining SOM as an entry-level architect a little more than three years ago, Lulu has grown in her role. She’s now a leader of the design team for a new science center at Wellesley College. We spoke with Lulu to learn more about her experience: the opportunities she’s found, the challenges she’s faced, and her advice for new graduates ready to begin their careers.
How did you get interested in architecture?
Today, a new exhibition opened in Venice featuring the work of the global architecture and engineering practice Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM). Presented at the European Cultural Centre, "Time Space Existence" is a collateral exhibition of the 2018 Venice Biennale of Architecture. The show includes work from leading architects, photographers, sculptors, and universities from around the world.
The Chicago Tribune has released images of an SOM-designed skyscraper scheme for the former Chicago Spire site. The two towers, measuring 1,000 and 850 feet tall (305 and 259 meters), are expected to contain 1.3 million square feet of floor space, including 850 residential units.
The proposal signals a new lease of life for 400 N Lake Shore Drive, where a 75-foot-deep, much-ridiculed foundation hole serves as the only reminder of the once-planned Chicago Spire, a 2000-foot-tall Santiago Calatrava-designed skyscraper.
Since construction was halted on the Chicago Spire, the Santiago Calatrava-designed skyscraper at 400 N Lake Shore Drive, the hole which was to become the tower's foundation has become something of a local punchline, variously being caricatured as the site of semi-ironic proposals for inner-city adventure playgrounds or the pit into which the city's other failed ventures can be metaphorically dumped. But according to a report by the Chicago Tribune, that narrative might be about to change, as their sources within the city government have confirmed that a proposal is in the works to bring two skyscrapers to the site, designed by David Childs of SOM, the lead architect behind 1 World Trade Center.
As lead designer of the Lever House and many of America’s most historically prominent buildings, Pritzker Prize-winning architect Gordon Bunshaft (9 May 1909 – 6 August 1990) is credited with ushering in a new era of Modernist skyscraper design and corporate architecture. A stern figure and a loyal advocate of the International Style, Bunshaft spent the majority of his career as partner and lead designer for SOM, who have referred to him as “a titan of industry, a decisive army general, an architectural John Wayne.”
Airport design is both an art and a science: the best terminals are not only functional, but also beautiful and awe-inspiring spaces. Millions of people pass through these terminals every day, yet few understand their inner workings as well as Roger Duffy and Derek A.R. Moore—design leaders at SOM who have conceptualized some of the most ambitious aviation projects around the world, including Terminal 2 at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai. In this interview, Moore, a Director, and Duffy, a Design Partner, reflect on the complicated challenges of airport design, and how these constraints can fuel creative solutions.
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) has unveiled images of its proposed 54-story mixed-use tower in Hangzhou, China. Standing at a height of 945 feet (288 meters), the "Hangzhou Wangchao Center" seeks to act as a gateway to the eastern Chinese city’s newly-planned Qianjang Century Town district. With 1.3 million square feet (125,000 square meters) of office, hotel, and retail space, the scheme represents the ambitions of Hangzhou to become a global destination, spurred by its hosting of the Asian Games in 2022.
Chicago-based Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill (SOM) have unveiled new images of their proposed 18-story office tower in the trendy Fulton Market area of Chicago. “The Porch,” situated on 330 North Green, will feature a five-story open-air deck, and series of luxury amenities to support the new office environment.