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Urban Design: The Latest Architecture and News

Jade Bamboo Culture Plaza / Urbanus

00:00 - 29 March, 2010
Jade Bamboo Culture Plaza / Urbanus, © Meng Yan
© Meng Yan

© Meng Yan © Meng Yan © Meng Yan © Meng Yan + 20

  • Architects

  • Location

    Taining Rd., Luohu District, Shenzhen. China
  • Category

  • Principle Architects

    Meng Yan
  • Project Manager

    Xing Guo, Liao Zhixiong
  • Team

    Liu Xiaoqiang, Wu Kaimao, Li Jing, Ding Yu, Wei Zhijiao, Zuo Lei, Xia Miao, Liu Liu | Zhu Jialin (Technical Director)
  • Project Period

  • Site Area

    6,871 ㎡
  • Floor Area

    1,433㎡(Underground Parking)
  • Photographer

    Meng Yan
  • Collaborator

    NHY Architectural Engineering Design Company, Ltd.
  • Client

    Jade Bamboo Neighborhood Administration Office
  • Area

    6870.0 m2
  • Project Year

  • Photographs

Rising Currents at MoMA

11:57 - 25 March, 2010

Organized by MoMA and PS 1 Contemporary Art Center, the Rising Currents exhibit cannot be missed by architects, ecologists, or green enthusiasts…let alone any New Yorker. The exhibit is a cohesive showcase of five projects which tackle the lingering truth that within a few years, the waterfront of the New York harbor will drastically change. Dealing with large scale issues of climate change, the architects delve into a specific scale that we can recognize and relate to. The projects are not meant to be viewed as a master plan, but rather each individual zone serves as a test site for the team to experiment. The projects demonstrate the architects’ abilities to look passed the idea of climate change as a problem, and move on to see the opportunities it presents. Barry Bergdoll, the Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design at MoMA, explained, “Your mission is to come up with images that are so compelling they can’t be forgotten and so realistic that they can’t be dismissed.”

More about each zone after the break.

Square des Frères-Charon / Affleck de la Riva architects

00:00 - 23 February, 2010
Square des Frères-Charon / Affleck de la Riva architects, © Marc Cramer
© Marc Cramer

© Marc Cramer © Marc Cramer © Marc Cramer © Marc Cramer + 27

  • Architects

    Affleck + de la Riva architects
  • Location

    Montreal, Canada
  • Category

  • Artist

    Raphaëlle de Groot
  • Urban Lighting

    Gilles Arpin
  • Industrial Design

    Morelli designers inc.
  • Interpretation And Museology

    Moitie-moitie inc.
  • Horticulture

    Sandra Barone
  • Project Year

  • Photographs

The Modern Castle / DEVE Architects

12:30 - 25 January, 2010

Copenhagen-based DEVE Architects were one of the winners of the Europan 10 Architecture competition. Their project was a revitalization of an industrial harbor area in Augustenborg, Denmark.

Their proposal primarily addresses the historical and spatial implications of building in the small city, but there are significant environmental considerations as well. The encompassing municipality of Sønderborg envisions a carbon neutral ‘Kommune’ by the year 2030, and they hope they’ll get the opportunity to contribute to that goal.

Architect’s description and more images after the break.

In Progress: Metropol Parasol / Jürgen Mayer Architects

11:16 - 18 January, 2010
© Pedro Pegenaute
© Pedro Pegenaute

The Metropol Parasol in Sevilla, Spain, is the result of a competition in 2004, awarded to Jürgen Mayer Architects.

© Jürgen Mayer Architects
© Jürgen Mayer Architects

The sinuous structure is proposed to be a landmark in the middle of the old city fabric, while serving as an observation deck to discover the upper level of the compact urban context, a new view of the city. The project has been criticized by the citizens because of the contrast with the existing constructions, as you can see on the renderings.

Architecture photographer Pedro Pegenaute shared with us some photos of the current status of this impressive structure, from which we can see a preview of what the observation deck will be:

Plaza del Torico / b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos

00:00 - 8 December, 2009
Plaza del Torico / b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos, © Duccio Malagamba
© Duccio Malagamba

© Duccio Malagamba © Duccio Malagamba © Duccio Malagamba © Duccio Malagamba + 13

  • Architects

    b720 Arquitectos
  • Location

    Teruel, Spain
  • Category

  • Architects In Charge

    Fermin Vazquez
  • Project Team

    Fermín Vázquez, Agustín Miranda, Pedro Baltar, Sebastián Khourian, María Barbeito, Ana Caffaro, Leyre Ciriza, Ángel Corsino (models), Pedro García, Pablo Garrido, Gustavo Gaudeoso, Guillermo Gutiérrez , Markus Jacobi, Paulo Moreira, Magdalena Ostornol, Javier Piedra, Andrea Rodríguez, Marta Sorribes, Alesandro Zanchetta (graphic design)
  • Lighting Consultant

    Artec3 Lighting / Maurici Ginés, José Cardona, Jesús González, José Ma Deza
  • Client

    Sociedad Municipal Urban Teruel
  • Developer

    Diputación General de Aragón
  • General Contractor

  • Budget

    6,500,000 €
  • Area

    3730.0 m2
  • Project Year

  • Photographs

World Village of Women Sports / BIG

16:26 - 27 October, 2009

BIG, in collaboration with AKT, Tyréns and Transsolar, just won the competition for the World Village of Women Sports in Malmo, Sweden, a 100.000sqm complex for research, education and training of women’s sports.

Rather than a program organized around a sports arena disconnected from the city, the project becomes a town inside a town, offering rich public spaces as you can see on the renderings.

The central space of the village offers a large area for public gathering, which can host professional football matches, concerts, conferences, exhibitions and flea markets. Around this space we find a series of sloped buildings, which reduce the visual impact of the complex to the adjacent neighborhood.

Between these buildings we find a pedestrian network around the main sports hall which plugs into the surrounding street networks as well as the interior galleries of Kronprinsen, turning it into a complete ecosystem of urban life.

More images and drawings after the break.

Sietch Nevada / Matsys Designs

21:00 - 18 September, 2009

Designed by Matsys Designs, Sietch Nevada is a response to the idea of a water-poor world becoming a reality, especially in the American Southwest. With so much of the press focused on wars over oil, the world is often unaware of the slowly depleting water sources, which are indeed exponentially more valuable than oil. This futuristic urban prototype addresses the water situation as a complex underground network of tunnels and canals offers protection and the “storage, use, and collection of water essential to the form and performance of urban life.”

More about Sietch Nevada after the break.

Masdar Sustainable City / LAVA

00:00 - 1 September, 2009

The future well being of cities around the globe depends on mankind’s ability to develop and integrate sustainable technology.

LAVA designed the Masdar City as the city of the future; positioned at the forefront of integrating sustainable technology into modern architectural design. Rome, Athens, Florence; most great historical cities have had the plaza, forum, or square at their epicentre – where the life, values, ideals, and vision of the population evolved. Equally, the centre of Masdar must be an iconic beacon that attracts global attention to sustainable technology.

Slave City / Atelier Van Lieshout

07:30 - 26 July, 2009

As if it was a mix in between Huxley | Orwell story, Atelier Van Lieshout from Rotterdam is developing this project since 2005. Just like in Brave New World, future society is an embodiment of the ideals that goes beyond ethics and liberty, and the artwork it’s obviously influenced in the scripts of fiction books from the early XX century, like mentioned Huxley’s Brave New World, Orwell’s Men Like God or maybe some D. H. Lawrence novels.

Let’s hear what they have to tell us after the break

Dario Cottone's Ribbon Unites Caltanissetta

12:46 - 29 May, 2009

Under the direction of architect Dario Cottone, the young Italian firm recently won an international competition in the historical center of Caltanissetta, Sicily. Cottone’s project focuses on a red ribbon that aims to link the older historic parts of the 16,000 square meter site with the emerging contemporary areas.

Further project description and more images after the break.

Dragonfly Vertical Farm concept by Vincent Callebaut

12:00 - 23 May, 2009

Amidst financial buildings and high-rise apartments, Belgian architect Vincent Callebaut has redefined the conventional skyscraper. His 132 story complex for the south edge of Roosevelt Island addresses the pressing need for environmental and ecological sustainability. This conceptual design focuses on creating a completely self-sustaining organism that not only utilizes solar, wind, and water energies, but also addresses the pending food shortage problem.

More after the break.

A New Infrastructure, Los Angeles

07:30 - 17 April, 2009

Los Angeles is often portrayed as the example of the car-friendly city. The traditional image of the town is an endless pattern of single family dwellings, interconnected by traffic-clogged freeways, where transit is undeveloped and the air is choked with smog.

However, Los Angeles is changing. The city’s Transport Authority has planned in the last years a series of measures aiming to improve quality of life through improving transit and walking and providing alternative to car commuting.

International firms invited by MAD to design "Huaxi City Centre" in China

21:00 - 17 February, 2009

MAD recently organized a collaborative masterplanning project in South West China. Ten young international architects were invited to take part in an urban experiment, to design a new city centre on a scenic natural site close to the city of Guiyang. The participating architects were: Atelier Manferdini (USA), BIG (DENMARK), Dieguez Fridman (ARGENTINA), EMERGENT/Tom Wiscombe (USA), HouLiang Architecture (CHINA), JDS (DENMARK/BELGIUM), MAD (CHINA), Mass Studies (KOREA), Rojkind Arquitectos (MEXICO), Serie (UK/INDIA), Sou Fujimoto Architects (JAPAN).

Seen on designboom.

Images after the break.

Promenade Samuel-de Champlain / Option aménagement + Consortium Daoust Lestage + Williams Asselin Ackaoui

00:00 - 15 December, 2008
Promenade Samuel-de Champlain / Option aménagement + Consortium Daoust Lestage + Williams Asselin Ackaoui

Promenade Samuel-de Champlain / Option aménagement + Consortium Daoust Lestage + Williams Asselin Ackaoui Promenade Samuel-de Champlain / Option aménagement + Consortium Daoust Lestage + Williams Asselin Ackaoui Promenade Samuel-de Champlain / Option aménagement + Consortium Daoust Lestage + Williams Asselin Ackaoui Promenade Samuel-de Champlain / Option aménagement + Consortium Daoust Lestage + Williams Asselin Ackaoui + 34

  • Architects

    Consortium Daoust Lestage + Williams Asselin Ackaoui + Option aménagement
  • Location

    Quebec, Canada
  • Category

  • Engineering

  • Lighting Consultant

  • Contractor

  • Client

    Commission de la Capitale Nationale du Québec
  • Area

    0.0 m2
  • Project Year


Strandkanten / 70ºN Arkitektur

00:00 - 27 August, 2008
Strandkanten / 70ºN Arkitektur

Strandkanten / 70ºN Arkitektur Strandkanten / 70ºN Arkitektur Strandkanten / 70ºN Arkitektur Strandkanten / 70ºN Arkitektur + 49

  • Architects

  • Location

    Tromso, Norway
  • Category

  • Lighting Design

  • Engineers

    Skanska ASA
  • Client

    Strandkanten AS
  • Contractor

    Skanska ASA
  • Project Year


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.

3LHD wins the Zamet Centre competition

21:30 - 6 May, 2008

3LHD is a croatian office that has developed some interesting houses, sports facilities and urban projects. And now they just won the private competition for the Zamet sports and community centre in Rijeka, Croatia. Rijeka is an industrial harbour city on the Adriatic Sea and the new complex will provide it with a new civic hub for both business people and the general public.

From their press release: