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Sustainability

Copper Facades: Architecture’s Original Bling

05:00 - 17 December, 2018
Copper Facades: Architecture’s Original Bling, © Thomas Ott
© Thomas Ott

Since its discovery in 8700 B.C., copper has been one of the most used metals in the history of humankind. It has a variety of uses from coins and weapons to statues and even architecture. One of its first architectural uses was in Ancient Egypt for the massive doors of the temple to Amen-Re at Karnak in 300 B.C.

The versatility of the material continues in architecture to this day, allowing for a variety of unique designs and uses. The innovative, efficient, and lightweight material is versatile in its use, ranging from facades to roofs, interior applications, and high tech solutions. Sustainable in its natural form, the material is 100% recycled. As the state of architecture becomes more focused on sustainability, copper becomes the ideal material for the buildings of today.

Below, we’ve selected 7 projects that use architecture's original bling.

© Thomas Ott © David Foessel © Joan Bracco & Cécile Septet © Adam Mørk + 16

NLÉ Architects' MFS IIIx3 Prototype Launched in China Explores Ecological Intelligence

05:00 - 13 November, 2018
NLÉ Architects' MFS IIIx3 Prototype Launched in China Explores Ecological Intelligence , Courtesy of NLÉ Architects
Courtesy of NLÉ Architects

As part of a collaboration between the Centre Pompidou and the Mao Jihong Arts Foundation, the Cosmopolis #1.5: 'Enlarged Intelligence' exhibition features the developments of NLÉ Architects' Makoko Floating School. The Minjiang Floating System (MFS IIIx3), the fourth prototype and the third iteration of the prefabricated self-built system for water, investigates methods to counter the challenges posed by urbanization and climate change.

Earlier prototypes of the Makoko Floating School include the Waterfront Atlas (MFS II) launched in Venice, Italy and the Minne Floating School (MFS III) in Bruges, Belgium. The project, initially developed for the water in Lagos, is now usable in all these sites including the Jincheng Lake in Chengdu.

Courtesy of NLÉ Architects Courtesy of NLÉ Architects Courtesy of NLÉ Architects Courtesy of NLÉ Architects + 6

How to Make Earth Plaster in 5 Easy-to-Follow Steps

04:00 - 9 November, 2018
How to Make Earth Plaster in 5 Easy-to-Follow Steps, © Rafael Loschiavo | Ecoeficientes
© Rafael Loschiavo | Ecoeficientes

The use of earth plaster is very common in natural buildings; it is the same mixture used in adobe. Though easily made, its use is not widely known. Rafael Loschiavo, from Ecoeficientes, teaches the step-by-step method for bringing a new life to a run-down wall without the need for major renovations.

The Appalachian "Long Lodge" Optimizes Mass Timber Construction for Sustainable Design

08:00 - 3 November, 2018
The Appalachian "Long Lodge" Optimizes Mass Timber Construction for Sustainable Design, Courtesy of Yueqi Li
Courtesy of Yueqi Li

The 'Long Lodge' proposal for residential cabins along the Appalachian Trail, recently named the Honor Award Winner of the 2018 Maine Mass Timber Design Competition, highlights simple yet creative ways to spotlight the possibilities and natural beauty of timber as a construction material. The winning four-person design team created a lodge that not only serves as a temporary living space but rather becomes a memorable spatial experience through the effects of the structural design choices.

Courtesy of Yueqi Li Courtesy of Yueqi Li Courtesy of Yueqi Li Courtesy of Yueqi Li + 8

Benthem Crouwel Designs "Recycled and Recyclable" Science Faculty for the University of Amsterdam

11:00 - 1 November, 2018
Benthem Crouwel Designs "Recycled and Recyclable" Science Faculty for the University of Amsterdam, © Benthem Crouwel Architects
© Benthem Crouwel Architects

Benthem Crouwel Architects has designed a multifunctional building for the University of Amsterdam’s Faculty of Science. The 14,000-square-meter scheme is envisioned as a “lively lab of research, development, and co-creation, in the center of the campus and society.”

The competition-winning “LAB 942” centers on energy neutrality, flexibility, and openness. A modular framework and circular construction made of recycled and recyclable material enable the scheme to operate as a future-proof, adaptable addition to the school’s rapidly-expanding investigations in innovation and artificial intelligence.

"Plastic Island" Imagines the Possibilities of Reusing Oceanic Waste in Architecture

05:00 - 1 November, 2018
Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr
Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr

With rising sea levels and incessant consumption of plastic, the state of the earth's oceans is rapidly deteriorating. Instead of discarding or burning this plastic, architects Erik Goksøyr and Emily-Claire Goksøyr questioned whether any architectural potential exists in this neglected material. By conducting an extensive material study, the duo designed three prototypes to postulate this theory. 

Though starting out as a humble thesis, this project is being actualized under the organization, Out of Ocean. From the shores of the Koster Islands in Sweden, plastic samples were collected and studied for their various material performance in areas such as color, texture, light, and translucency.

Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr + 36

Sydney Opera House Becomes Carbon Neutral

14:00 - 24 September, 2018
Sydney Opera House Becomes Carbon Neutral, Courtesy of Sydney Opera House
Courtesy of Sydney Opera House

The Sydney Opera House is celebrating a significant environmental milestone, having become carbon neutral five years ahead of schedule. For reducing its carbon dioxide emissions through efficiencies in waste and energy management, the Opera House was awarded certification from the Australian Government’s National Carbon Offset Standard (NCOS).

The sails of the Sydney Opera House were illuminated green on the night of Monday 24th September to celebrate the carbon neutral certification.

© Prudence Upton Courtesy of Sydney Opera House Courtesy of Sydney Opera House © Hamilton Lund + 4

OOPEAA + Lundén Architecture Company Design Charred Timber Housing District in Helsinki

12:00 - 20 September, 2018
OOPEAA + Lundén Architecture Company Design Charred Timber Housing District in Helsinki, Courtesy of OOPEAA
Courtesy of OOPEAA

OOPEAA, working in collaboration with Lundén Architecture Company, has won a design and build competition for a timber housing development in Kivistö, Vantaa in the Helsinki metropolitan area of Finland. Organized by the City of Vantaa, the competition asked entrants to design a district of wooden housing, part of a commitment “to provide climate-conscious development in housing.”

Titled “Upstairs – Downstairs, Living Together on Three Levels,” the OOPEAA and Lundén scheme will form part of the broader sustainable district, creating a link between natural forest, active streets, and railway infrastructure.

Shaping the City: A Forum for Sustainable Cities and Communities

13:22 - 10 September, 2018
Shaping the City: A Forum for Sustainable Cities and Communities, Courtesy of European Cultural Centre
Courtesy of European Cultural Centre

The European Cultural Centre for the Exhibition “Time-Space-Existence” in context of the 16th Venice Architecture Biennale is organizing its first conference under the title of: “ Shaping the City : A Forum for Sustainable Cities and Communities”. It includes all participating architectural schools and universities from across the globe in TSE 2018 along with other international institutions and architecture studios.

2019 eVolo Skyscraper Competition

08:00 - 31 August, 2018
2019 eVolo Skyscraper Competition, 2019 Skyscraper Competition
2019 Skyscraper Competition

eVolo Magazine is pleased to invite architects, students, engineers, designers, and artists from around the globe to take part in the 2019 Skyscraper Competition. Established in 2006, the annual Skyscraper Competition is one of the world’s most prestigious awards for high-rise architecture. It recognizes outstanding ideas that redefine skyscraper design through the implementation of novel technologies, materials, programs, aesthetics, and spatial organizations along with studies on globalization, flexibility, adaptability, and the digital revolution. It is a forum that examines the relationship between the skyscraper and the natural world, the skyscraper and the community, and the skyscraper and the city.

Could Carrots Make Concrete Stronger and Greener?

12:00 - 10 August, 2018
via flickr user conchur licenced under CC BY 2.0
via flickr user conchur licenced under CC BY 2.0

Carrots cannot help you see in the dark, but they could make your buildings stronger, and more environmentally friendly. Engineers at Lancaster University in the UK have worked in collaboration with Cellucomp Ltd UK to study the effects of adding “nano platelets” extracted from the fibers of root vegetables to enhance the performance of concrete mixtures.

The vegetable-composite concretes, made from vegetables such as sugar beet or carrot, have structurally and environmentally out-performed all commercially-available cement additives, such as graphene and carbon nanotubes, doing so at a much lower cost. 

Comparing Tree Coverage in 10 Major Cities Around the World

14:00 - 3 August, 2018
New York. Image via flickr user "quintanomedia"licensed under CC BY 2.0
New York. Image via flickr user "quintanomedia"licensed under CC BY 2.0

Throughout the last two years, researchers at the MIT Senseable City Lab in Cambridge, Massachusetts have been using Google Street View data to study some of the world’s most prominent cities in terms of tree coverage. Developed in collaboration with the World Economic Forum, “Treepedia” seeks to promote awareness of the role of green canopies in urban life, and asks how citizens can be more integral to the process of greening their neighborhoods.

The ever-growing list studies cities both around and beyond the USA, using an innovative metric called the “Green View Index,” which uses Google Street View panoramas to evaluate and compare green canopy coverage in major cities. Through monitoring the urban tree coverage, citizens and planners can see which areas in their city are green and not green, compare their green canopy with other cities, and play a more active role in enhancing their local environment.

Ingenhoven Architects and Architectus Win Competition to Design Sydney's Tallest Residential Skyscraper

06:00 - 1 August, 2018
Ingenhoven Architects and Architectus Win Competition to Design Sydney's Tallest Residential Skyscraper , Courtesy of Doug and Wolf
Courtesy of Doug and Wolf

A beautifully delicate design by ingenhoven architects, in cooperation with architectus, has bested series of internationally acclaimed architects to design Sydney’s tallest residential tower at 505-523 George Street. The 79-storey skyscraper will reach 270m, and include several uses, ranging from high-quality living and retail to hotel and leisure. The designers hope the tower will be “a profoundly visible landmark standing for an economical, environmental and socially sustainable, future-oriented development”.

Courtesy of Doug and Wolf Courtesy of Doug and Wolf Courtesy of Doug and Wolf Courtesy of Doug and Wolf + 12

A New Web Platform on Architecture and Design Has Launched

Sponsored Article
A New Web Platform on Architecture and Design Has Launched, Roca Gallery Web © Roca Gallery
Roca Gallery Web © Roca Gallery

The digital platform rocagallery.com, a project from Roca, aims to be a reference point for design and architecture to news and thought, with more than 30 international writers and content updated every week.

Studio Komma Will Transform Former Dutch Cargo Ships Into Sustainable Homes

06:30 - 20 July, 2018
Studio Komma Will Transform Former Dutch Cargo Ships Into Sustainable Homes, Courtesy of Studio Komma
Courtesy of Studio Komma

Adaptive reuse, the process of refashioning a defunct structure for a new purpose, is ubiquitous these days—so much so that hearing a phrase like “converted warehouse” or “repurposed factory” barely causes one to blink an eye. However, a new project from a cohort of Dutch architecture firms highlights the innovative nature of adaptive reuse with a scheme that reimagines disused cargo ships as houses. With their fully intact exterior shells, the ships remind residents and visitors of their industrial, seafaring past.

Courtesy of Studio Komma Courtesy of Studio Komma Courtesy of Studio Komma Courtesy of Studio Komma + 10

The Challenges of Creating Sustainable, Plant-Based LEGO Bricks

06:00 - 16 July, 2018
The Challenges of Creating Sustainable, Plant-Based LEGO Bricks, via LEGO
via LEGO

Earlier this year, LEGO announced that they were beginning production on a new line of botanical-themed pieces made from sugarcane. This new line is just the start of the company's goal to only use sustainable materials in all major products and packaging by 2030. Here we will explore the process behind LEGO’s “going green” initiative, and the challenges they’ve faced in making more environmentally-friendly building blocks along the way.

Scarpa + Brooks Explore How Architecture Can Shape Memory

14:00 - 23 June, 2018

Why do we remember buildings, locations, and experiences? Even a place visited in our childhood can conjure emotions that make an impact on us through the memories they create. Angela Brooks and Larry Scarpa explain that the work of Brooks + Scarpa Architects aspires to make a lasting impression out of even a brief encounter. “We try to leave something behind,” says Scarpa, “something ingrained in people’s memory that sticks with them.”

© Ben Benschneider Courtesy of Brooks + Scarpa © John Linden © Tara Wucjik + 7

Donghua Chen & Partners Release Details of "Science Island Loop" Proposal in Lithuania

08:00 - 23 June, 2018
Donghua Chen & Partners Release Details of "Science Island Loop" Proposal in Lithuania, Courtesy of Donghua Chen & Partners
Courtesy of Donghua Chen & Partners

Donghua Chen & Partners released details of their proposal for the Lithuanian National Science and Innovation Center, an initiative known colloquially as “Science Island.” The competition saw entries from 144 teams, making it the largest design contest ever held in Lithuania. Donghua Chen & Partners were one of three finalists for the competition, with the entry by SMAR Architecture Studio ultimately chosen for realization.

The Donghua Chen & Partners proposal named the “Science Loop” sees a series of systems, including social, skyline, circulation, devolution, and recycling loops, organized as an integrated network.

Courtesy of Donghua Chen & Partners Courtesy of Donghua Chen & Partners Courtesy of Donghua Chen & Partners Courtesy of Donghua Chen & Partners + 22