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.
As the winner of the 2016 RIBA Stirling Prize is set to be announced later today, Architects’ Journal has released a documentary looking at the award’s 21-year history and its impact on the buildings and architects that have been named to the prestigious list.
Wilkinson Eyre Architects has won an international competition to design Australia's second tallest tower. The proposed Queensbridge Hotel Tower, planned for Melbourne’s Southbank area, will be comprised of a 388-room luxury hotel and 680 apartments, as well as ground floor retail and rooftop garden terrace. As BDOnline reports, the winning scheme will rise 317-meters - just five meters shy of the country's tallest building: Q1 on the Gold Coast. Pending approval, it is scheduled for completion in 2020.
London-based British practice Jonathan Tuckey Design (JTD) have created a series of residential interiors for the 'Gasholder Triplets' in London's formerly industrial King's Cross district. 145 individual apartments have been designed inside these mid-nineteenth century structures, within which Wilkinson Eyre Architects have created the "architectural insertions" (the buildings themselves).
FC Barcelona has announced 14 teams in the running for two planned overhauls of their facilities at the Camp Nou in Barcelona, including alterations to their main stadium and the rebuilding of the Palau Blaugrana, the nearby arena owned by the club and used primarily for basketball and handball. The alterations to the two buildings are part of a larger €600 million project, known officially as "Nou Espai Barça," which seeks to improve the club's entire campus, also adding an ice skating rink, new offices, 5,000 parking spaces and improving the outdoor space surrounding the facilities. The Nou Espai Barça project was approved by the club's fanbase last April after a 72% vote in favor of the proposal.
The list names eight teams - including BIG, Populous, HKS and Arup Sport - in the running for the overhaul of the stadium itself, which will involve the addition of almost 6,000 seats to bring the stadium's total capacity to 105,000, increasing the stadium's lead as the largest football stadium in Europe. It will also include a complete redesign of the lowest seating tier to offer improved views, and the addition of a roof over the terraces. Also named are the six teams in the running to rebuild the Palau Blaugrana.
English Heritage has announced the six teams shortlisted in the two-stage competition to design a new bridge at Tintagel Castle. Situated on the Island of Tintagel on the Northern coast of Cornwall, the new bridge will strengthen the medieval castle's connection to the mainland, spanning 72 meters at a height 28 meters taller than the existing pedestrian footbridge.
When the competition was announced in June, the organizers Malcolm Reading explained that teams should "envisage an elegant, even structurally daring, concept which is beautiful in its own right and sensitively-balanced with the landscape and exceptional surroundings." The six winners were chosen unanimously from a list of 137 candidates which Chair of the Jury Graham Morrison said reflect "a mix of great talent and experience." Read on for the six teams to go through to the next stage of the contest.
Five practices have been shortlisted to put forward designs for the Bristol Arena, a cultural and sporting hub which is set to have a 12,000 seating capacity and is due to open towards the end of 2017. The city's Mayor, George Ferguson (who is himself an architect-turned-politician), has said that "we now have five very capable and talented design teams with a wealth of experience between them drawing up proposals" that will contribute to the regeneration of the city's Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone (a site close to Temple Meads Station). The five shortlisted multi-disciplinary design teams are consortiums experienced in delivering major cultural venues in the UK or overseas. A team led by Populous, who completed the London 2012 Olympic Stadium, are running in collaboration with Feilden Clegg Bradley, who were shortlisted for the 2014 RIBA Stirling Prize. They are competing against teams led by Grimshaw and Wilkinson Eyre, who recently installed a cable-car across London's Millennium Dome.
London Mayor Boris Johnson has ruled in favour of the controversial Mount Pleasant scheme in North London at a public hearing held earlier today. The scheme was called in for a hearing at the request of the site's owner Royal Mail who claimed that Islington and Camden councils (who are both responsible for parts of the huge site) were taking too long over the planning application, but has been criticized heavily by locals who feel that the scheme is not appropriate for the site, and by the councils who feel that the scheme's 24% affordable housing is unacceptably low. However, Johnson drew criticism in June for apparently “compromising his neutrality” in advance of the hearing when he stated that the redeveloped Mount Pleasant “will be a wonderful place to live.”
Johnson approved the scheme after a heated hearing attended by over 100 members of the public and press, with many in attendance booing and heckling the mayor and representatives of the Royal Mail.
Details have been leaked of a major new development on the Southern edge of downtown Toronto, just East of Union Station. The scheme, uncovered by UrbanToronto and its inquisitive users, involves the connection of sites on both sides of the railway tracks, and will include three towers and a pedestrian bridge featuring a park and retail space. It is understood that Wilkinson Eyre are the architects, after BD confirmed last week that they have recently won a major competition in Toronto.
The controversial Mount Pleasant development in London has sparked another row this week, as campaigners accused Mayor Boris Johnson of "compromising his neutrality" over the 681-home scheme which he has called in to review personally. Though he is supposed to remain neutral until the hearing, last week Johnson remarked in a speech that the development "will be a wonderful place to live." However many have expressed concern over the design, including Thomas Heatherwick, who lives locally and called the scheme "empty, cynical and vacuous." Read all the details at BD Online.
The Art Fund recently announced the six museums on the UK's 2014 Museum of the Year shortlist, its annual award for the outstanding museum of the year. The award celebrates every aspect of what makes a museum successful, but this year the list was highlighted by crucial work by architects, including renovations of the Tate Britain and the Ditchling Museum of Art & Craft, as well as the newly-constructed Mary Rose Museum in Portsmouth. The winner from the six museums will receive a £100,000 prize, and will be announced on July 9th.
Read on after the break for the complete shortlist
The RIBA has announced three projects—two located in Asia and one in the United States—for the shortlist of the RIBA’s Lubetkin Prize. Named for Berthold Lubetkin, a Georgian-born architect, the prize celebrates the work of RIBA members building outside of the UK. Zaha Hadid’s Galaxy Soho, Grimshaw’s Via Verde and Wilkinson Eyre’s Cooled Conservatories will face off for the honor; the winner of this year’s Lubetkin Prize will be announced (along with the winner of the prestigious Stirling Prize) on September 26th in London.
"The 2013 RIBA Lubetkin Prize shortlist features three exceptionally innovative projects that meet three very different urban challenges. From the blueprint for New York affordable housing and the creation of an impressive new shopping district in central Beijing to Singapore’s new sustainable gardens, these are all extremely clever solutions. These cutting-edge schemes show the leading role that architects play in delivering visionary new thinking about urban issues, and illustrate why UK creative talent has such recognition around the world."
Wilkinson Eyre Architects has won an international competition to design “Sydney’s next masterpiece.” Selected over three other shortlisted firms - Renzo Piano, Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill, and KPF - the London-based practice will now be responsible for the design of a $1.5 billion sculptural icon to host a six-star Crown Sydney resort on a 6000-square-meter site in the inner-city waterfront precinct of Barangaroo.