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Timber: The Latest Architecture and News

16 Mexican Projects That Use Wood in Wondrous Ways

BRUMA Winery / TAC Taller de Arquitectura Contextual. Image © Miguel Ángel Mayoral Rodríguez Casa Media Perra / Santos Bolívar. Image © Humberto Romero Treehouse Suite / Deture Culsign, Architecture+Interiors. Image © The Cubic Studio Departamentos Artia / AS Arquitectura + CO-LAB Design Office. Image © Onnis Luque + 19

Wood has been an indispensable material in the history of civilization. Different regions from around the world have used it for specific climatic conditions. Mexico, as we have mentioned on several occasions, is an extensive country where different climates, resources and ways of life fit. Therefore the application of wood in architecture has been developed in a number of ways, from its structural use to produce roofs for Mayan huts to projects that seek to revive vernacular architecture.

While the handling of this material is difficult due to its specific detail management, it presents a multitude of benefits from its aesthetic appeal, air circulation, and even smell. Take a look at 16 Mexican projects that use wood in wondrous ways. 

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

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.

Students Construct 7 Innovative Tiny Cabins at Hello Wood's 2018 Cabin Fever Retreat

The ninth Hello Wood International Summer University and Festival has taken place at Hello Wood’s campus in the Hungarian countryside. As part of the week-long Cabin Fever program, students from 65 universities around the world were given the opportunity to build seven contemporary timber cabins in a nomadic, lush countryside, mentored by international architects.

As a result of the week-long effort, the rural area was transformed into a cutting-edge working village featuring cabins on wheels, cabins on stilts, and multi-story homes. The festival is dedicated to the Tiny House Movement, which “makes cabins which give urban dwellers the chance to get away from it all for a while.”

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

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

HofmanDujardin Reimagine How We Say Goodbye to Loved Ones with New Funeral Center

Few subjects evoke as much sensitivity and refection, both within architecture and beyond, as those of death and mortality. Frank Lloyd Wright’s timeless reflection that “youth is a quality, and once you have it, you never lose it, and when they put you in the box, that is your immortality” offers one insight into how architects place not just their buildings, but also their lives and careers in perspective.

Furthering this engagement between architecture and mortality is HofmanDujardin, a Dutch studio which has sought to “rethink the way we say goodbye” with the design of a new Funeral Centre. Placing the coffin at its epicenter, the scheme translates the memorial sequence into three moments: the gathering of friends and family, the ceremony of remembrance, and the moment of social encounter.

Courtesy of VERO Visual Courtesy of VERO Visual Courtesy of VERO Visual Courtesy of VERO Visual + 10

New Details Released of Estudio Carme Pinós' 2018 MPavilion in Melbourne

The Naomi Milgrom Foundation has released images of the MPavilion 2018, designed by Barcelona-based architect Carme Pinós of Estudio Carme Pinós, and situated in Melbourne, Australia. The fifth MPavilion in an ongoing series, the Estudio Carme Pinós design seeks to invite interaction at an intersection between people, design, nature, and the city.

The first Spanish architect to design an MPavilion, Carme Pinós follows on from past MPavilion designers such as OMA in 2017, Studio Mumbai in 2016, and AL_A in 2015.

Courtesy of Estudio Carme Pinós Courtesy of Estudio Carme Pinós Courtesy of Estudio Carme Pinós Courtesy of Estudio Carme Pinós + 5

This Concept Uses a Pre-Fabricated Timber System to Enable Modern, Self-Built Homes

Solutions from the past can often provide practical answers for the problems of the future; as the London-based design and research firm, Space Popular demonstrate with their "Timber Hearth" concept. It is a building system that uses prefabrication to help DIY home-builders construct their own dwellings without needing to rely on professional or specialized labor. Presented as part of the ongoing 2018 Venice Biennale exhibition “Plots Prints Projections,” the concept takes inspiration from the ancient "hearth" tradition to explain how a system designed around a factory-built core can create new opportunities for the future of home construction.

© CVFH Courtesy of Space Popular Courtesy of Space Popular Courtesy of Space Popular + 33

A Floating Timber Bridge Could Connect Greenpoint, Brooklyn and Long Island City

If you stand in Manhattan Avenue Park in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint neighborhood, you’ll see the Long Island City skyline across a small creek. On the Greenpoint side of the creek, a historic neighborhood of row houses and industrial sites is rapidly growing. On the Long Island City side, high-rise apartments and hundreds of art galleries and studios line the East River. Just a stone’s throw away, Long Island City can feel like a world apart from Greenpoint. That’s in large part due to the fact that only one bridge connects the neighborhoods—and it’s meant more for cars than pedestrians or cyclists. Isn’t there a better way? Architect Jun Aizaki thinks so. For the past few years, he and his team at CRÈME Architecture and Design have been working on the so-called “Timber Bridge at Longpoint Corridor."

Courtesy of CRÈME Architecture and Design Courtesy of CRÈME Architecture and Design Courtesy of CRÈME Architecture and Design Courtesy of CRÈME Architecture and Design + 8

Provencher_Roy Envisions Futureproof Timber Vertical Campus Building For Toronto

As their entry in a competition for The Arbour, a new academic building for the campus of George Brown College on Toronto’s Lake Ontario waterfront, Montreal-based firm Provencher_Roy have revealed their design for an adaptable mass timber building that could grow and change in time.

Using a staggered truss structural system that divides the building into modular cells measuring 8.4 meters tall, 17.4 meters wide and 40 meters long, the firm explains that the stacked program elements can be reorganized as necessary, with classrooms and double-height auditorium spaces able to be converted to basketball courts or column-free open offices by adjusting the cross-laminated timber flooring, which can be adjusted without compromising the rest of the structure.

Courtesy of Provencher_Roy Courtesy of Provencher_Roy Courtesy of Luxigon Courtesy of Luxigon + 7

8 Biodegradable Materials the Construction Industry Needs to Know About

In architecture we are so caught up in creating something new, we often forget about what happens at the end of a building’s life cycle—the unfortunate, inevitable demolition. We may want our buildings to be timeless and live on forever, but the harsh reality is that they do not, so where is all the waste expected to go?

As with most non-recyclable waste, it ends up in the landfill and, as the land required for landfill becomes an increasingly scarce resource, we must find an alternative solution. Each year in the UK alone, 70–105 million tonnes of waste is created from demolishing buildings, and only 20% of that is biodegradable according to a study by Cardiff University. With clever design and a better awareness of the biodegradable materials available in construction, it’s up to us as architects to make the right decisions for the entirety of a building’s lifetime.

WKCDA Announces Winners of the Inaugural Hong Kong Young Architects and Designers Competition

The West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (WKCDA) has announced the winning design for the inaugural Hong Kong Young Architects and Designers Competition. The competition asked local architects and designers emerging in their careers to design a "temporary pavilion that promotes sustainability and addresses economic and natural resources." The winning design, titled Growing Up, by New Office Works is a timber pavilion that sits on the waterfront in Nursery Park at West Kowloon. Paul Tse Yi-pong and Evelyn Ting Huei-chung from New Office Works will serve as Design Advisors with the project set to open in fall 2018.

Courtesy of New Office Works Courtesy of New Office Works Courtesy of West Kowloon Cultural District Authority Courtesy of New Office Works + 10

High School and Community Centre Project Tests the Limits of Timber Log Construction

AOR Architects, a young practice based in Helsinki, have won the commission to design Monio High School and Community Centre in Tuusula, Finland. The project explores an innovative use of timber log building and will be the largest timber log school building in the world after its completion. Consisting of a high school, music institute, and community college, AOR’s proposal combines these different programs in a multi-functional learning and community environment.

Facade. Courtesy of AOR Exterior Render. Courtesy of AOR Elevations. Courtesy of AOR Model. Courtesy of AOR + 11

Japan Plans for Supertall Wooden Skyscraper in Tokyo by 2041

Timber tower construction is the current obsession of architects, with new projects claiming to be the world’s next tallest popping up all over the globe. But this latest proposal from Japanese company Sumitomo Forestry Co. and architects Nikken Sekkei would blow everything else out of the water, as they have announced plans for the world’s first supertall wood structured skyscraper in Tokyo.

At 1,148 feet tall, the proposal outpaces similar timber-structured highrise proposals including Perkins + Will’s River Beech Tower and PLP Architecture’s Oakwood Tower.

© Sumitomo Forestry Co. © Sumitomo Forestry Co. © Sumitomo Forestry Co. © Sumitomo Forestry Co. + 8

World's Tallest Timber Tower to Be Built in Norway—Thanks to New Rules on What Defines a "Timber Building"

Courtesy of Moelven Limtre
Courtesy of Moelven Limtre

Over the last few months, we have seen a surge in large timber structures being constructed across the globe claiming to be the biggest, the tallest, or the first of their kind—for example, plans for the Dutch Mountains, the world’s largest wooden building, have recently been revealed. Contractors Moelven Limtre are one of the key drivers of this change as the perception of timber as a load-bearing material becomes more common. Their director Rune Abrahamsen is responsible for one of the current claimants of the world record for the tallest timber building, “Treet” in Bergen, at 51 meters tall. However, the contractor’s latest project Mjøstårnet is set to reach an even taller height of 81 meters.

Courtesy of Moelven Limtre Courtesy of Moelven Limtre Courtesy of Moelven Limtre Courtesy of Moelven Limtre + 11

University of Arkansas to Construct America’s First Large-Scale, Mass Timber Higher Ed Residence Hall and Living Learning Project

University of Arkansas students are abuzz about the latest addition their university: Stadium Drive Residence Halls. Currently, under construction, the new 202,027 square foot residence halls are the nation’s first large-scale, mass timber higher ed residence hall project and living learning setting. The design collaborative behind the project is led by Boston-based Leers Weinzapfel Associates, Modus Studio in Fayetteville, Arkansas, Mackey Mitchell Architects in St. Louis, and Philadelphia landscape and urban design firm, OLIN.

Courtesy of Leers Weinzapfel Associates, Modus Studio, Mackey Mitchell Architects Courtesy of Leers Weinzapfel Associates, Modus Studio, Mackey Mitchell Architects Courtesy of Leers Weinzapfel Associates, Modus Studio, Mackey Mitchell Architects Courtesy of Leers Weinzapfel Associates, Modus Studio, Mackey Mitchell Architects + 9

Hi-Tech Hub The 'Dutch Mountains' Planned to Become the World's Largest Wooden Building

Plans have been revealed for the “largest wooden building in the world” to be located just outside Eindhoven in the town of Veldhoven, The Netherlands. Known as the Dutch Mountains, the complex was conceived via a multi-disciplinary partnership made up of tech companies, service providers, architects and developers, and would contain a hi-tech, mixed-use program for residents and visitors.

New Renderings Reveal Interiors of Shigeru Ban-Designed World’s Tallest Hybrid Timber Building in Vancouver

A new set of renderings has been released the Shigeru Ban Architects’ Terrace House development in Vancouver, revealing the interiors of the residential building for the first time. Being developed by PortLiving, the project will utilize an innovative hybrid timer structural system. When completed, it will become the tallest hybrid timber structure in the world.

Courtesy of Shigeru Ban Architects / PortLiving Courtesy of Shigeru Ban Architects / PortLiving Courtesy of Shigeru Ban Architects / PortLiving Courtesy of Shigeru Ban Architects / PortLiving + 6

This Pavillion Lives and Dies Through Its Sustainable Agenda

Are the concrete buildings we build actually a sign of architectural progress? Defunct housing projects abandoned shopping malls, and short-sighted urban projects are more often than not doomed to a lifetime of emptiness after they have served their purpose. Their concrete remains and transforms into a lingering reminder of what was once a symbol of modern ambition. Stadiums and their legacies, in particular, come under high scrutiny of how their giant structures get used after the games are over, with few Olympic stadiums making successful transitions into everyday life. With a new approach to sustainability, the Shell Mycelium pavilion is part of a manifesto towards a more critical take on building. Say the designers on their position: “We criticize these unconscious political choices, with living buildings, that arise from nature and return to nature, as though they never existed.”

The Shell Mycelium Pavillion is a collaboration between BEETLES 3.3 and Yassin Areddia Designs and offers an alternative to conscious design through temporary structures. Located at the MAP Project space at the Dutch Warehouse, the pavillion formed part of the Kochi Muziris Biennale 2016 Collateral in India.