Since their introduction to the wider public, artificial intelligence technologies seem prone to change the working landscape for professionals across all fields, and architecture and urban planning are no different. While many fear their negative impact, AI technologies can also be viewed as a different set of tools in the arsenal of architects and designers. As revolutionary as they are, there is a plethora of applications and platforms being developed not to replace, but to aid, offload repetitive tasks, and help visualize ideas or large data sets, all to provide a basis for the architect’s decision-making process.
Zaha Hadid Architects: The Latest Architecture and News
Zaha Hadid Architects have released images of their design for the world’s first hydrogen refueling infrastructure for recreational boating. Continuing ZHA’s experience in maritime designs, the stations are to be installed in 25 Italian marinas and ports. Launched by NatPower H, the stations will begin to be implemented in the summer of 2024, with plans to expand to over 100 locations throughout the Mediterranean Sea in the next six years.
NEOM - or "new life" in a blend of Greek and Arabic- is a new urban development planned by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Imagined as a cross-border city located in the northwest of the country, it aims to diversify the economy and reduce its dependence on oil. With promises of sustainability and innovation, the mega development has grabbed global attention with its 10 distinct regions.
It is conceptualized as a cutting-edge metropolis, aspiring to emerge as a worldwide epicenter for groundbreaking advancements and an exemplar of eco-friendly lifestyles. Since its announcement in 2017, NEOM has revealed the plans for 10 central regions, featuring a 170km long skyscraper, a futuristic ski resort, an upside coastal hotel, a tourism destination in a mountainous valley, and many more.
Sharjah, the captivating territory in the United Arab Emirates, is a cultural hub that blends tradition with contemporary modernity. Situated on the Arabian coastline, the city is known for its commitment to preserving its rich history, promoting the arts and culture, and providing a platform for creative and intellectual pursuits. In fact, the 2023 Sharjah Architecture Triennial (SAT) will take place from November 11, 2023, to March 10, 2024, under the theme "The Beauty of Impermanence: An Architecture of Adaptability." The Triennial is curated by Tosin Oshinowo, exploring innovative design solutions emerging from conditions of scarcity in the Global South.
With a deep-rooted connection to its cultural heritage, the emirate is home to an array of museums that showcase a journey through multiple timelines, from Islamic civilization to traditional lifestyles. Now a hotspot for emerging designers, the city has taken a leading role as a patron of fine arts. In the contemporary city, attractions are designed by many architects, from Foster + Partners, Zaha Hadid Architects, 51-1 Arquitectos, to Hopkins Architects. In addition to this emerging cultural scene, old Sharjah is a valuable embodiment of historical tradition, having been transformed into useable attractions and art facilities. The old Sharjah also flaunts landmarks such as the modernist King Faisal Mosque, the Museum of Islamic Civilization, and the Sharjah Art Museum.
Singapore’s Science Center recently hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the new building, designed to promote STEM education in all of Singapore. Situated adjacent to the Chinese Garden MRT station, this state-of-the-art facility designed by world-renowned Zaha Hadid Architects aims to become a landmark attraction in the Jurong Lake District. The new 55,000 sqm center is expected to open around the end of 2027, coinciding with its 50th anniversary.
Zaha Hadid Architects has been shortlisted for their proposal for the 2nd Sejong Cultural Center. The proposal draws inspiration from the surrounding city’s lengthy history as well as future vision. Connecting Yeouido Park to the Han River, the 2nd Sejong Cultural Center is embedded within the park's natural landscapes, aiming to become an integral part of the public function in the city within a natural setting, seamlessly connecting indoor and outdoor spaces.
For the 18th year, the International Architecture Awards has returned to celebrate outstanding architectural achievements globally. Based in Chicago, these awards feature exceptional new buildings, urban planning projects, and landscape architecture of 2023. Additionally, this month, the Chicago Architecture Biennial (CAB 5) is currently taking place in the city. Both the awards and the Biennial attempt to shed light on each country’s architectural, design, cultural, and social trends.
Since the inception of the International Architecture Awards in 2005, this annual program has served as a platform for celebrating contemporary architecture. Moreover, the awards institution believes in architecture’s potential to enhance the quality of life for individuals globally. This year, the selected winners span 48 countries, from Ethiopia to Tokyo and New York to Nova Scotia.
5 Iconic Architectural Projects Completed in 2023, Featuring MVRDV, OMA, Snøhetta, Studio Gang, and Zaha Hadid Architects
As we reflect on the unfolding of 2023, it has been a remarkable chapter in the world of architecture and design. This year saw the fruition of numerous groundbreaking projects that have left a mark on our collective built environment. This narrative takes place around a year of significance, with a renewed commitment to combat climate change, with dialogue initiated around world-renowned events such as the UIA World Congress of Architecture in Copenhagen or the 18th International Architecture Exhibition in Venice – La Biennale di Venezia.
This curated list includes projects that opened to the public in 2023. Each of them was designed and long-awaited to be completed. The featured architects include MVRDV, Zaha Hadid Architects, Snøhetta, Studio Gang, and OMA in collaboration with Shohei Shigematsu. Each of these firms is a unique design studio with its specific architectural style; while all these listed built projects are public and commercial.
Zaha Hadid Architects has unveiled plans for a striking 330-meter-tall skyscraper within the Trojena ski resort, situated in the Neom development in Saudi Arabia. The design was first presented at the Cityscape Conference in Riyadh as part of an exhibition focused on the Neom project. The new crystal-like skyscraper will be located on a mountain overlooking a central artificial lake, as it is planned to become an integral element of the Trojena, a region allegedly master-planned by LAVA architects. Zaha Hadid Architects have also revealed the design of a second structure within Trojena, a lookout pavilion located next to the skyscraper.
The city of Sanya in Hainan, China, has selected Zaha Hadid Architects as the winner of the competition for the design of the city’s new harborside cultural district. The new development, measuring a total of 409,000 square meters of built area, aims to become a central location for Sanya’s cultural life, providing diverse programming for performing arts, theater, exhibition galleries, conferences, and commercial trade fairs. The fluid shape of the buildings creates a transition from the tropical waters of Sanya Bay to the urban fabric of the city, with a central axis dividing the layered roofs that feather outwards and dematerialize the architectural volume.
One of the two hotels Zaha Hadid Architects designed in their Hollywood-Inspired “Studio City” Resorts has just opened to the public. Located in the Cotai district of Macau, the resort features leisure, entertainment, and hospitality facilities, including one of Asia’s largest indoor & outdoor water parks. The resort also features 557 rooms and suites spread across 40 floors. Inspired by Hollywood, ZHA was commissioned in 2018 to expand the resort, resulting in Studio City Phase 2.
Zaha Hadid Architects has revealed the design of the Daxia Tower, to be built in the High-Tech Economic and Technological Development Zone of Xi’an, one of China’s largest inland cities with a population nearing nine million people. The tower will mark the center of Xi’an’s business district and will include offices, retail, and ancillary facilities, all designed with data analytics and behavior modeling to ensure a balanced disposition of spaces.
Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) celebrates their 15-year journey in China with an exhibition at the Guardian Art Center in Beijing. “The New World” highlights their work and research in the fields of architecture and urbanism. Moreover, it details the evolution of ZHA’s work since opening its first office in China. The exhibition showcases the studio’s approach to projects, with a heavy focus on their new digital design tools and technology.
Henning Larsen, Snøhetta, MAD Arkitekter Amongst Shortlisted Teams for the New Music Theater in Griegkvartalet, Bergen, Norway
Five finalists have been shortlisted in the competition to design the new Griegkvartalet Theater in Bergen, Norway. The project is set to be a cultural powerhouse in Western Norway, hosting multidisciplinary forms of art, including opera, musical theater, ballet, dance, concerts, and conferences. The competition emphasizes integration with the surroundings, urban space, energy efficiency, and feasibility.
The shortlisted teams include Henning Larsen Architects, Snøhetta, Zaha Hadid Architects, MAD arkitekter and Kengo Kuma, and the Nordic Office of Architecture includes Arkkitehtitoimisto ALA in the architecture subjects. Each studio was selected from 32 participants worldwide and will be filtered into three winners in the coming stages in the fall of 2023. Ultimately, by March 2024, one winner will be selected and receive the official service contract to begin construction.
As one of the most important and visited contemporary architecture exhibitions worldwide, the Venice Architecture Biennale extends beyond the grounds of the Giardini and the Arsenale, and at Forte Marghera to engage the whole city in discussing relevant issues, challenges, and opportunities of the architectural profession. To explore more diverse perspectives of the overarching theme, “Africa: The Laboratory of the Future,” 9 collateral events have been officially announced as part of the 18th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia.
The events, which are admitted by curator Lesley Lokko and promoted by non-profit national and international bodies and institutions, take place in several locations scattered around the city. They offer a wide range of contributions and participations that contribute to the diversity of voices represented at the exhibition in Venice.
On April 6, SPACE10 will introduce a global design competition to reimagine home — using AI. Over the past year, generative AI tools have enhanced imaginative and creative capabilities, allowing millions of people to visualise worlds beyond those we ever thought possible. In a first of its kind competition, SPACE10 challenges participants to apply new AI tools to future homes and cities. Regenerative Futures is part competition, part open-source research, and open to everyone. The competition encourages play and imagination to create visual concepts of future homes, communities, and cities that help address some of the biggest challenges facing everyday life.