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Updated: 3 hours 33 min ago

London’s Architectural Association Exhibits Futuristic Work of Jan Kaplický

3 hours 37 min ago

Now on view at London’s Architectural Association, Jan Kaplický Drawings presents work by the Czech architect Jan Kaplický (1937-2009) – a visionary designer with a passion for drawing as a means of discovering, describing and constructing. Through drawing he presented beguiling architectural imagery of the highest order.

The earliest projects date from the early 1970s when, for Kaplický, drawing was essentially a speculative pursuit. Whilst his days were spent working for other architects, during evenings and weekends he designed and drew at home. His architecture at this time was the plan and the finely detailed cross-section. Never satisfied, he constantly developed and honed his graphic language, perfecting the technique of the cutaway isometric which became his trademark.

A preview of Kaplický’s drawings, after the break. 

In 1979 Kaplický founded Future Systems with David Nixon. Clients included NASA, for whom they produced design studies for the International Space Station. Ten years later a new partnership with Amanda Levete prompted Future Systems to build – and with building came a new creative discipline. The Media Centre at Lord’s Cricket Ground, winner of the 1999 Stirling Prize, was the last project that Kaplický drew entirely by hand. From then on, formal drawings were done with computers by others and he took delight in sketching.

Kaplický was one of the world’s last great architectural and artistic draughtsmen, upholding a heritage that has its roots in the early Renaissance. If this remarkable body of work has one central message, it is that drawing as an art and a discipline must not be forgotten.

Title: Jan Kaplický Drawings
Organizers: Architectural Association
From: Sat, 28 Feb 2015 10:00
Until: Fri, 27 Mar 2015 15:00
Venue: – Front Members’ Room
Address: 36 Bedford Square, Fitzrovia, London WC1B, UK

Text via the Architectural Association

London's Architectural Association Exhibits Futuristic Work of Jan Kaplický originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

The Cardinal / Modus Studio

4 hours 37 min ago

Architects: Modus Studio
Location: 831 West Center Street, , AR 72701, USA
Principal Architect: Chris M. Baribeau, AIA
Area: 370605.0 ft2
Year: 2014
Photographs: Timothy Hursley

Project Manager: David McElyea, Associate AIA
Architectural Team: Aaron Speaks, Graham Patterson, Allison Vandever, Associate AIA
Landscape Architect: Ecological Group, Inc.
Structural Engineer: Structural Consultants Associates, Inc.
Mep/Fp Engineer: SSOE, Inc.
Civil Engineer: Jorgensen & Associates
Leed Consultant: Viridian
General Contractor: Thompson Thrift Construction
Construction Cost: $24,358,652

From the architect. Completed in August of 2014, The Cardinal at West Center is a collegiate multifamily infill project located on a two-acre site adjacent to the University of Arkansas. This exceptionally walk able site forms the northern edge of an aging residential neighborhood, which gives the Cardinal a unique opportunity to be a catalyst for growth in Fayetteville’s urban core.

Inspired by the dense and varied housing surrounding the site, the Cardinal’s design makes use of layered scheme to engage the context in a sustainable and modern format. A simple palette is sculpted to address views, orientation and properly position its amenities. As density makes projects viable, articulation drives the site massing. Balconies are alternately carved and projected from the conceptual mass to create variations in the façade that are playful and purposeful.

The interior spaces reflect the clean lines and form of the exterior in an array of durable and healthy materials. Accessibility to natural light, views, and fresh air are at the root of each unit’s design. Numerous amenity spaces, including roof decks, study areas and courtyards, are designed to draw together the diverse student community. To reinforce active design and support a healthy community, the main club lounge and entry are connected to residential levels above by an active staircase.

An exterior stair at the northwest corner of the site provides a visual connection to pedestrian movement, particularly the student commute to the heart of the university’s business campus nearby. By design, the parking structure is hidden from the urban edge in an effort to remove the casual car commute from the daily life of a resident—a strong shift from the predominantly suburban habits of most southern students.

The sustainable culture of the Cardinal draws a new and distinctive demographic – a generation seeking something better than the multifamily status quo of concrete walls and windows, an aesthetic beyond traditional norms. This project embraces the fresh tendencies of modern design to provide a lively and engaging environment for those who will ultimately inhabit the complex.

The Cardinal / Modus Studio originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

Jean Nouvel Seeks Legal Action to Distance Himself from Philharmonie de Paris

5 hours 10 min ago

After boycotting the premature opening of the infamous Philharmonie de Paris, Jean Nouvel has taken his frustrations to court demanding that his name and image be removed from all references to the publicly funded €390 million concert hall. The French architect, who has claimed to be wrongly vilified as a “spoilt-star artist” and unfairly blamed for the project’s spiraling costs, does not “wish to express himself any further on the project.”

He has asked the court “to order amending work” to 26 “non-compliance” areas that do not comply with his original . This areas include parapets, fireplaces, facades, the promenade and 2,400-seat concert hall itself.

The Parisian venue opened at the start of this year in the Parc de la Villette of the city’s north-east suburbs after being shrouded in controversy over the past seven years of its construction due to rising costs and delays.

Deliberations are due mid-April. Meanwhile, Nouvel has asked that to not be associated with the cultural venue.

News via Le FigaroBD

Jean Nouvel Seeks Legal Action to Distance Himself from Philharmonie de Paris originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

Casa en Los Andenes / Aurelio Herrera & Enrique Llatas

6 hours 38 min ago

Architects: Aurelio Herrera, Enrique Llatas
Location: ,
Area: 170.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Lolo Lamas

Design Team: Dick Villanueva, Ana Guerrero de Luna, María del Pilar Díaz
Structure: Carla Pisconte

From the architect. More mass not means less light

The site is located in the south of the city, where the nature of the ground sent the house inside a desert landscape, around dunes and oriented to the horizon. Work in a scene like this, far from the city, make us think how we should deal with the position of this new materia inside a virgin landscape.

The bulk stands on a podium of landfill compacted with land contained by stone walls of the zone until you find a level where you have the opportunity to look the environment. And, at the same way, we separated the most private area of the first floor of the house and social public in the cover with a surrender landscape.

From these operations, appears a central courtyard which help organize throughout the house and that it will be the place where looking at the sky. Unlike the different environments that are framing different parts of the plot in its orientation North-South-West.

The house closes on his entry into two large white walls, allowing a monumental central door of three meters high, to be open, go through with the look and allows to see the horizon.

This stone is white and are the settings of the landscape, the garb of the people and the light, who will give the color to the space. This stone has been carved by a lot of care and precision, waiting to give with each bore a look of the place not to be understood from the outside.

Casa en Los Andenes / Aurelio Herrera & Enrique Llatas originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

Arup and GXN Innovation’s Biocomposite Facade Wins JEC Innovation Award

7 hours 37 min ago

Arup and GXN Innovation have been awarded with the JEC Innovation Award 2015 in the construction category for their development of the world’s first self-supporting biocomposite facade panel. Developed as part of the €7.7 million EU-funded BioBuild program, the design reduces the embodied energy of facade systems by 50% compared to traditional systems with no extra cost in construction.

The 4-by-2.3 meter panel is made from flax fabric and bio-derived resin. Intended primarily for commercial offices, the glazing unit features a parametrically-derived faceted design, and comes prefabricated ready for installation. The panel is also designed to be easy to disassemble, making it simple to recycle at the end of its life.

The panel consists of two biocomposite outer shells with a layer of insulation in between. The faceted overhang above the glazed section of the panel can be parametrically adjusted depending on the panel’s location and orientation, providing optimal shading for the glazing, which together with the low thermal conductivity of the biocomposite material gives the panel excellent thermal performance. The panel was designed to conform to the stringent fire, thermal and structural codes of Denmark, GermanyUnited Kingdom and Spain.

“This innovative product pushes the boundaries of both facade and materials engineering towards new targets by using biocomposites in an extremely demanding sector of construction,” said Guglielmo Carra, BioBuild Design Manager at Arup . “The design freedom of biocomposites can generate a strong impact on the appearance of buildings.”

In addition to the awarded facade panel, the BioBuild consortium has realized building kits for rainscreen systems, internal partition walls and suspended ceilings. Speaking about the BioBuild program and the JEC Innovation Awards, the Director of GXN (the research arm of architecture firm 3XN) Kasper Guldager Jensen added: “BioBuild proves that biocomposites can create viable products for the building industry. I am very happy to see this collaborative effort between engineers, architects, materials specialists and manufacturers come through, it shows the strength of cross disciplinary innovation.”

The JEC Innovation Award will be presented to the team at a ceremony in Paris on March 10th.

Arup and GXN Innovation's Biocomposite Facade Wins JEC Innovation Award originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

Walter Netsch: The “Radical Mind” That Designed SOM’s Air Force Academy Chapel

8 hours 7 min ago

Having joined Skidmore, Owings & Merrill after World War Two at the age of 27, Walter Netsch was promoted to become a partner at the age of 31. Netsch entered the firm during what was arguably its defining era, when the reputation of Gordon Bunshaft and the image of a corporate-driven, teamwork-minded made one of the most recognizable practices in the US. He was also, at the age of just 34, responsible for one of ’s most recognizable projects of the decade, the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs and its striking geometric chapel.

To honor what would have been Netsch’s 95th birthday, SOM recently republished an interview between Netsch and architecture theorist and writer Detlef Mertins, which had originally been published in 2001 in SOM Journal 1. In the following extract from this interview, Netsch discusses the story of how he developed the design, and what it was like to participate in one of America’s most influential practices among a host of strong characters.

Detlef Mertins: The Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs has been recognized as one of the most distinguished projects of SOM and, more broadly, of modern architecture in America. The architects were selected in 1954, and the Academy was opened in 1958. The Chapel was completed in 1962. The project received the American Institute of Architects 25 Year Award in 1982. As a young man, how did you get to work on it, and what was your relationship with Gordon Bunshaft?

Walter Netsch: I was given the full responsibility for the design of the Academy. I was thirty-four years of age. Today you have to be fifty, although there are some younger architects coming up too. Of course, Gordon was the chief of design and came to the client meetings. I wanted him there. I’d find him with his squared paper moving things around for the campus, making refinements, but not major changes. He always credited me with solving the problem of how to build on the mesa. My dorm, which is two levels up and two levels down, really wowed him, because he didn’t think that way. So we got along fine.

The only time we didn’t get along was when he suggested the Italian mosaic. I had never been to Europe. But he went whenever he could and had seen the small mosaics from Murano. “That’s what we should use on these walls, Walter,” he said. “Oh,” I said, “fine.” So we got samples and I looked at them. Of course, we had a tradition of using red, blue, and yellow?—?the Bauhaus colors, which Gordon really stuck to. But I liked green also, so I brought along green. Gordon looked at me for a while and said, “Walter, if you use green I’ll never go to another meeting.” That was the easiest decision to make. I took off the green. I was raised at MIT, but he wasn’t. I was sufficiently younger that I didn’t have that full dedication to the Bauhaus that he had. He was really part of the revolution at the beginning, when America was modernizing. I was at the end of it.

DM: Did you run into any other problems on the Academy?

WN: The partners didn’t like my chapel on the hill. It was too medieval. And Saarinen said, “I don’t care what it looks like, but Walter, you’ve got to get it off that hill.” He’d speak Finnish, you know. He was born in America, but would always go into a foreign language, and the words would come out marvelously. He used his hands and said, “Bring it down into the life of the cadets.” Of course he was right, and it moved down, although very slowly. I often had a hard time because once we’d thought something through, we thought that it didn’t need to be reviewed again. There were times when it was proper to review, times when it was not. But Gordon would take the academic building, and he would suddenly start pushing elements around just for the sake of a Corbusian proportional system. I had a system too, based on the number seven. Three-and-a-half and seven. The whole Academy is based on the seven-foot module. I had lived in Japan and appreciated how the module of the tatami mat worked. But Americans are taller than they are, so I had to figure out a dimension that was appropriate. I picked three-and-a-half and seven. If you look at the Academy horizontally, vertically, within, everything is on that module… Oh, it was a job to make it work rationally, but we did it.

DM: If you were accustomed to working with a rectangular module, how did you come to use the tetrahedron for the chapel?

WN: That was Ken Nasland’s contribution, my engineer. We would have lunch at a beanery across the street and scribble while we talked. I was really worried because Gordon had sent me to Europe to look at Gothic architecture and Renaissance architecture. “Because you’re going to do another controversial building, Walter, and you’ve got to be able to say that you’ve seen Chartres and Notre Dame.” The trip took three weeks. I came back saying, “Gee, we don’t have stone masons today. We don’t have the love of labor through which something is added within the same vocabulary every decade. How can you achieve that effect, but do it all at once?” We made a little model of a folded plate, which was au courant. Take a piece of paper and bend it, and so forth. Origami. I started scribbling, drawing, trying to get a repetitive feature. Ken said, “What are you doing? Trying to draw a tetrahedron?” That’s the way he talked. Very straight forward. I said, “No. What’s a tetrahedron?” He drew me an equal tetrahedron. But I said that wouldn’t work. “Well, make one of your own,” he said. So I went home and got the tetrahedron to work. I worked as much at night as I did in the daytime. I got it to flip-flop. That was the great thing. I could flip-flop it, turn it upside down, inside out.

Then I made a model to show to Nat [Nathaniel A. Owings] and Gordon. It was of two tetrahedrons and was about three feet tall. Of course Bruce Graham saw it in the office and asked, “What are you doing?” I said, “I’m working on the chapel.” Nothing else happened. He went to Bill Hartman and said, “Walt is crazy. He’s got an idea that’s just awful.” And then I took it to Nat who said, “Gee, that’s wonderful.” I took it to Gordon and he said, “You should pursue it.” Bruce went to Gordon and said, “Will you stop it?” Gordon said, “No, I won’t.” So there was a conflict within the firm as well as outside the firm.

Our little studio was quite excited about it. We tried to make an apse, but nothing worked to our satisfaction, so we didn’t do it. The idea grew of having three chapels in one. And I did traditional things like extend the shape of the stairway?—?a typical Renaissance trick. Then I did some studies on the glass in between. I waited for the Air Force to select an artist, but they told me they had no intention of selecting an artist, that I would have to do it. So I spent a year working with a team of four people who did research for me. Robinson Ward headed it. I said, “Robinson, how am I going to do all this glass? This mile of glass?”

DM: Were these people part of the studio?

WN: Yes.

DM: Dedicated to doing research?

WN: Yes, but I didn’t get any approval. I just did it. Just four guys who concentrated on research?—?research on glass, research on aluminum, research on whatever was needed. As long as it was for the good of the project no one complained. The glass strips were only a foot in width, so I couldn’t very well tell a story as Gothic stained glass had done. It had to simply work with colors. I went for dark colors at the beginning, symbolizing the creation of the world, shifting gradually to gold at the altar, for the revelation. Robinson came up with the technique. He said, “Walter, you just take the workers and tell them to hit the edges with a hammer.” The raised cushion would then fasten in different ways because the glass reacted differently to the way in which different people hit it. No one was trying to copy the old craft techniques of the Gothic cathedrals. “Just hit it. You’ve got a whole crate of them, hit them.” And it worked. It is faceted and it looks great when the sunlight shines on it.

DM: It seems that, already then, you were able to achieve a fair bit of autonomy within the firm.

WN: Yes, and at the same time I was really in favor of working as a group. First of all, I had to concede that I could do it. Somehow I could do it. So I really wasn’t worried about being in the group. That wasn’t really a problem. Secondly, we were working on large projects, so there was an individual project within the group that you could take responsibility for. And then you had Nat. The partners’ meetings were wonderful at that time. Gordon, of course, had established the name of the firm. All those project managers in New York, bless them?—?I mean, Fred Kraft, Ed Petrazzio, Bill Brown, and the rest of them?—?felt that Gordon took all the glory. No one got any credit in the magazines for any of the buildings until the Academy Chapel. Since half the partnership didn’t want it built, they were very happy to let me take all the credit for designing it. So I broke a taboo by accident.

DM: Before we talk more about how you broke away from the mold within SOM, what would you say you took from the more orthodox modernist approach?

WN: I’m really the last contact from the old days at SOM. Bruce came after me by enough years that he caught the Mies bug, and John Barney Rogers, a partner in the firm in the beginning, went to school in the Bauhaus in Germany under Mies, spoke German. He was my boss when I was the designer out in the San Francisco office. I lived in a little one room apartment with a view and a spring-down bed. When he went on vacation, he gave me the keys to his wonderful house in Pacific Heights, multileveled and looking out over Golden Gate Bridge. He had a library from Germany and chairs from Germany, tufted sofas and things. I’d take my vacation at the same time he did, and I’d go up there and see these elegant books. I was recently given an award at IIT, and I gave credit to Professor Anderson of MIT, to Gordon, and to John Barney Rogers. “Walter, this plan doesn’t quite read,” John would say because of his Miesian studies. It reads. You don’t have to look for it. A professional can immediately see how it works. So we all learned that part of modernism that has to do with reading. If you look at work by Le Corbusier or any of the other modernists, it always reads.

DM: Is that important to you still?

WN: Oh yes.

DM: Something you strive for in your work?

WN: Yes, even my complicated mathematical ones. I think you ought to have an image. In all my travels abroad I can’t think of any place where chaos has been the design element. I’ve been to Bilbao like everybody else and seen the Guggenheim by Gehry. I think it’s a marvelous building. I really do. But I can’t imagine six of them.

DM: You’ve also described yourself in contrast to Mies who had a big influence on SOM. Would you say a bit more about that?

WN: I never could be a Mies fan. I just do not have the same basic attitude. The search for an SOM look was Nat’s. Gordon was the closest to it at that time. I never thought of it to speak of. I didn’t go home and think at night of being different. I’d go home at night and think, what are the issues I needed to deal with and why. Working on the campus at the University of Illinois I’d ask, “Why do I have a high-rise building? Because of the program?” We were trying to get the humanities and the social sciences to speak to one another. The president gave me the program. He didn’t want all the departments in little buildings as they had at Urbana. So I devised a high-rise building that had two floors for each discipline with a seminar room in the middle and some offices. The elevators and the heating and ventilating system worked so that any two floors could operate independently on the weekend. We hoped there would be communication. We had a very modern, sixties attitude towards what an urban university should be. We thought it should provide skills and philosophies that would help resolve the urban problem. Of course it didn’t. But the buildings reflected that effort.

Read the full interview over at Medium.

Walter Netsch: The "Radical Mind" That Designed SOM's Air Force Academy Chapel originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

Urban House in Tua do Lindo Vale / Ana Cláudia Monteiro + Vítor Oliveira

8 hours 37 min ago

Architects: Ana Cláudia Monteiro + Vítor Oliveira
Location: Rua Lindo Vale, 4200 , Portugal
Area: 249.0 sqm
Year: 2010
Photographs: José Campos

Engineering: António Oliveira, Américo Monteiro
Construction: Ergohab
Site Area: 225m2

From the architect. The House is located in the Rua do Lindo Vale, in the city of Porto. It is a row-house, 3 stories high, built on a plot of 5 m width and 40 m length. This building has four fundamental characteristics. The first is that the architects are also the clients of this project. The design of the Architect’s House is, undoubtedly, a unique challenge within the design of the House, as an architectural programme, due to the coincidence between the ‘architect’ and the ‘client’, and due to the possibility of the spatial realization of the architect’s own residential experience.

The second characteristic is the sound sense of urbanity of this House. This is not a house built in the periphery of the city, in a plot of medium- or large-size, but a House erected in the central area of the city, an area with an intense urban life, in a long and narrow plot that raises a number of spatial constraints. Based on the regulations of the plan in force, for a building to be erected on this plot it should maintain the alignment of adjacent buildings, a maximum height inferior to the width of the street, and a high permeability in the back of the plot. The definition of this volume (by the regulations of the plan) led to an interior organization of the dwelling that is, somehow, similar to the inner structure of the typical houses of Porto – two lit rooms near the two façades of the house and a third non lit room in the core of the house. The staircase is located in this core. In each floor, the third room corresponds to: the library (which is opened to the office) and the bathroom in the ground floor; the kitchen (which is opened to the dining and living rooms) on the first floor; and a patio in the second floor.

The third characteristic is the simplicity of design and . The integration of this House within the existing buildings is based, in a first moment, on a careful volumetric articulation and, second, on the simplicity of design of the front and rear façades – the structure, the door and windows, and the gate – reinforced by the use of one single color. Inside the house this simplicity continues: in an interior organization layout that is very similar in all floors; in the search for ‘true’ in construction; and in a spatial continuity between the three floors, which is enhanced by the design of the stair and of the vertical movement. This simplicity is also underlined by the use of a restricted range of in all rooms, including both the kitchen and the bathrooms: walls and ceilings are painted white, pavements are of beige vinyl floor, and wooden doors are painted white.

Finally, the House is very flexible. The repeated use of a set of very simple elements introduced a great versatility in the day-to-day living of the House: i) each window, on the front and rear façades, has two sets of shutters – one set positioned between 0 and 0.90m high, and another set positioned between 0.90 m and 2.65 m high; ii) all rooms, except the bathrooms, have sliding doors that can be fully collected by the interior walls allowing, as such, a smoothness movement between different rooms.

The House in the Rua do Lindo Vale is clearly an urban house belonging to ‘that’ particular place. It is the spatial expression of the residential experience of their architects; erected on a great simplicity of design and materials, achieving its high quality through a rigorous sense of construction and a high spatial versatility.

Urban House in Tua do Lindo Vale / Ana Cláudia Monteiro + Vítor Oliveira originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

“Winter Stations” Bring Warmth to Toronto’s Frozen Beaches

9 hours 38 min ago

Five finalists have emerged from the 196 submissions of ’s first international design competition. Drawing proposals from 36 countries around the world, the competition challenged entrants to transform the lifeguard stations on Toronto’s east beaches into public art pieces for the winter. The finalists’ designs were constructed in mid-February and will be displayed until March 20, 2015.

Take a look at the completed installations, after the break. 

Toronto’s Winter Stations competition is the brainchild of RAW Design, Ferris + Associates, and Curio, and encourages artists, designers, architects, and landscape architects to reactivate a popular summer destination during the winter months through public art installations with the theme of “warmth.”

The 2015 Winter Stations finalists are:

Sling Swing / WWB Studio (London/Liverpool, UK)

To provide warmth, Sling Swing relies on the body heat of its visitors by transforming the typology of deck chairs into a series of swings, encouraging visitors to group together. Bright canvases catch the eye of passersby because of their color and movement as the wind activates them.

Driftwood Throne / DM_Studio (London, UK)

Using the form of the lifeguard stand as its canvas, Driftwood Throne employs an additive process with reused timber to make it a sculptural shelter. Beneath its faceted walls, visitors are invited to sit and escape the harsh winter weather.

Wing Back / Tim Olson (New Hampshire, USA)

Drawing inspiration from a wingback chair, the installation acts as a gathering space and seating area. The extended lines of the lifeguard stand create shelter from the prevailing northern winds, and the semi-circular form captures the warmth from the central fire ring.

HotBox / Michaela MacLeod and Nicholas Croft (Toronto, Canada)

Homage to the traditional ice house, HotBox relies on the senses to evoke warmth by creating a strong contrast inside the structure from the conditions outside. The dark exterior opens up to an insulated, soft interior space with an oculus that floods it with warm, natural light.

In addition to the finalists’ installations, another lifeguard stand was transformed by a team from Ryerson University’s Engineering and Architectural Science department. Their design is as follows:

Snow Cone / Diana Koncan and Lily Jeon (Toronto, Ontario)

Pairing the shielding qualities of a pinecone’s structure with the air-trapping technology of an ingloo, Snowcone presents an insulated environment and playful form for visitors to enjoy.

For more information and to view the full submissions, visit

"Winter Stations" Bring Warmth to Toronto's Frozen Beaches originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

Reinier de Graaf on Cultural Amnesia and the “Fall” of the Berlin Wall

11 hours 38 min ago

“Twenty-five years after the Berlin Wall’s demise, it is as though a large part of the twentieth century never happened,” writes OMA principle Reinier de Graaf in his article for Metropolis Magazine “The Other Truth”. “An entire period has been erased from public consciousness, almost like a blank frame in a film.” Through the course of the article, de Graaf outlines how the West has rewritten the history of the cold war, erasing the “other truth” that existed for nearly half a century in East , the USSR, and other soviet-aligned states – a truth that we forget to our peril. It may not be immediately architectural, but the essay provides an interesting look into the political thoughts of de Graaf who, as the principle of one of architecture’s most prominent research organizations in AMO, has an important influence on the profession’s understanding of the wider world. Read the article in full here.

Reinier de Graaf on Cultural Amnesia and the "Fall" of the Berlin Wall originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

Bergen University College / Cubo Arkitekter + HLM Arkitektur

12 hours 37 min ago

Architects: Cubo Arkitekter, HLM Arkitektur
Location: University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway
Area: 51750.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Courtesy of Cubo Arkitekter +

Landscape: Asplan Viak AS
Engineer: Sweco Norge AS
Client: Statsbygg, Norway and Bergen University College

From the architect. Bergen University College brings together the engineer, teacher and health educations in one new building complex. The college is built on a former railway depot site, where new buildings blend in, regards being taken to the layout of the rails, with the original structures.

The school is designed as a serpentine shape winding its way through the old structures, thus creating intimate courtyards and nice outdoor spaces for the Kronstad quarter.

The project is named Linking (Kobling). Referring to the building linking the area of Kronstad to the center of Bergen ,- infra structurally with the recently established tram. – The project links the new and the old built environment and it links the inhabiting institutions, which were separated before.

The University College of Bergen will be visible in the cityscape with a new front square, where existing railway buildings converted into student facilities and cantina emerges in constellation with the new building complex. New meets old. The administration wing of the college rises as a campanile towards the square and the main entrance from Inndalsveien.

The old railway deposit buildings contains social functions uniting the ca. 5000 students in the new “campus town”. –Student house, cantina, library and gymnasium is thus placed in the 4 restored brick buildings.

The auditoriums – with open views and access to light giving courtyards- surrounds the common student functions. Classrooms with different sizes, open study zones and meeting spaces for common use are located on the two lower levels in the new house.

The three different branches of education, are gathered with their own identity on the levels 2-4, -on top of the base of classrooms on the lower levels. This way there is a rich opportunity to link the different educations in synergy and mutual inspiration, and still leaving the possibility for reflection within your own area of study.

Bergen University College / Cubo Arkitekter + HLM Arkitektur originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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Kategorien: Architektur

RIBA Future Trends Survey Reveals A “Mixed Picture”

13 hours 38 min ago

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)’s Future Trends Survey for January 2015 has revealed strong levels of optimism as workload forecasts remain strongly positive across all regions of the UK. Following little change in indexes between November and December 2014, the workload index has once again remained consistent at +29. Workload forecast balance figures have remained high, the highest numbers being reported from practices in Northern Ireland at +67 (from +50) and Scotland at +57 (from +75). Furthermore, practices of all sizes have been responding with positive workload prospects heading into the next quarter.

The percentage of respondents reporting that they had personally been under-employed fell is only 2% higher compared to the same time last year, suggesting a “lag between the growth in workloads and an increase in the numbers of staff being employed.”

January’s survey has continued to show signs that the recovery is being shared equally across practices of all sizes, though medium-sized practices (11–50 staff) and large-sized practices (51 plus staff) are the most optimistic about workload prospects over the next quarter. This month, the RIBA also releases quarterly results tracking the value of actual work in progress compared with 12 months ago. In January 2015, our practices reported that workloads are 6% higher than in the corresponding quarter of 2014.

The RIBA Future Trends Staffing Index stands at +14 in January 2015 (down from +17 in December of last year), but remains in positive territory with only 4% of practices predicting a decrease in overall permanent staffing levels over the next quarter. Although the private housing sector workload forecast remains the most positive, increasing to +33 from +25, the “crucial” commercial sector workload forecast fell back a little further from its recent highs, down to +13 from +17. Nevertheless, the RIBA believes that ”practices continue to be very positive about future prospects for private housing and commercial work.”

According to Adrian Dobson, RIBA Director of Practice, “this month’s results present a slightly mixed picture; however, uncertainty around the imminent General Election is probably contributing to practices being more circumspect about future workload levels in the public and third-sector work.” He notes that “we have seen a steady decrease in the number of our respondents reporting that they had personally been under-employed in the last month, and this suggests that most of the spare capacity retained within the profession during the recession is now being productively employed. We therefore anticipate more substantial growth in overall employment levels in 2015.”

Dobson continues by suggesting that “anecdotal commentary received continues to suggest a continuing strengthening of the market for architects’ services. Although we are not yet recording a dramatic increase in overall staffing levels, we are seeing evidence of some practices encountering difficulties in attracting new staff with the right mix of skills and experience.”

The monthly survey is designed to “monitor the employment and business trends affecting the architectural profession throughout the period of economic downturn,” the data from which is analyzed by both the RIBA and the Fees Bureau. It is a “representative sample of the range of different practice sizes and geographical locations” with 1,600 British Architects from 226 firms contributing.

Read the reports in full here.

RIBA Future Trends Survey Reveals A "Mixed Picture" originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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House with One Wall / Christian Kerez

14 hours 37 min ago

Architects: Christian Kerez
Location: Witikon, , Switzerland
Year: 2007
Photographs: Walter Mair

Project Team: Jürg Keller, Andreas Skambas, Fumiko Takahama, Ute Burdelski, Ryuichi Inamochi
Structural Engineer: Schwartz Consulting AG, Zug, Joseph Schwartz
Facade: Krapf AG, St-Gallen
Construction Management: BGS, Rapperswil

From the architect. A two-family house is a building with a wall that divides it into two halves. The dividing wall is the only wall in the entire house. It cannot be crossed anywhere. It has to fulfil functions conventionally assigned to several architectural elements. It is the loadbearing structure and the installation core, its folds define all of the rooms and it determines how the view from the entirely glazed building is divided between the two living units.

The simplicity of the concept, the reduction of the architecture to a single element, creates substantial dependence and, in turn, makes the building very complex. It is only through that dependence that the wall acquires a compelling and cogent character although, in itself, it can follow any chosen course.

The wall between the two units has folds in it so that it will not fall over, like folding a piece of paper so that it can stand on end. The folds are different from floor to floor. One room is concave, another convex. One room is open plan, another has sections. The shape of the wall is reversed in each of the flats – on one side a protruding bend, on the other a niche; on one side a wide space, on the other a narrow one.

Every storey consists of one long room. Despite limited floor space, the elongated rooms seem spacious. They are expansive in an extremely economic way. That explains why the building looks much smaller from the outside than from the inside. There is only one area in the entire house that is completely closed off: the bathroom. But it too emerges from the logic of the folded wall. The room-height sliding door of the built-in wardrobe placed in front of it is a continuation of the wall slice. Neither wardrobe nor bathroom interrupts the progress of the wall; instead they expand and multiply it.

The walls, their placement varying from floor to floor, are linked by stairs that lead through the entire depth and height of the house from one end to the other. The cascading staircase is the final and perhaps most important attempt to wrest spatial clarity and expansiveness from  a very ordinary brief and a restricted plot of land.

House with One Wall / Christian Kerez originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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House Between The Trees / Šebo Lichý architects

15 hours 37 min ago

Architects: Šebo Lichý architects
Location: Bratislava,
Architects In Charge: Tomáš Šebo, Igor Lichý
Area: 202.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Tomáš Manina

Design Team: Katarína Uhnáková, Štefan Onofrej, Martina Matušová- interior design

From the architect. Steep terrain with three robust chestnut trees, which owners decided to preserve. This is how the property on which a unique family house was to be built looked at the beginning. Architects from Šebo Lichý?s atelier took the challenge and designed a genuine construction inspired by famous Tugendhat villa.

The front part of the house is levitating on dynamic pillars and provides amazing panoramic views of the surrounding area. The back part of the house is plunging into the rising hill and is composed of several levels. When entering the house you find yourself in the middle floor, which is spacious and completely barrier free thanks to the extended part on the pillars. This floor belongs to parents with their bedroom, bathroom and workroom. There is also living room and kitchen, visually separated with the fireplace. Huge windows can be open to enable ventilation of the space. The floor above the children rooms with their own bathrooms and patios are situated. The floor below there is a basement with laundry room and home gym. A genuine invention represents the shaft for laundry, which delivers the clothes from discreet cover on the corridor right to the basement.

From that floor you get to the outdoor terrace with grill, sheltered with the extended floor on the pillars from above. Contact with nature in this realization is achieved in several ways. Family can enjoy barbecue on the large sheltered terrace, sun on the patios, which has almost every room or an amazing panoramic view in the living room. Right there the glassy walls provide stunning views, which vary as if it was a live painting following change of the weather, the seasons, the day and the night. Tightly close growing chestnuts creates the feeling of living among trees.

At the lowest level there is a garage, connected with the house through the passage. The garage is cleverly hidden under the green grassy roof so you don’t even notice it when you look at the garden.  The house is built in a nice quiet area near to the city centre. Unusual family villa takes full advantage of the steep terrain in the best possible way. Connection with nature is almost tangible there and undoubtedly improves the quality of life in the city.

House Between The Trees / Šebo Lichý architects originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 04 Mar 2015.

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NEF Primary School / CINICI Architects

19 hours 37 min ago

Architects: CINICI Architects
Location: ?stanbul, Turkey
Architect In Charge: Can Cinici
Area: 7284.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Cemal Emden

Collaborators: Ozlem Ates, Baris Eren, Mert Gokturk, Cem Katkat, Ali Koc, Selim Koytak, Tunc Saracoglu, Cemre Teomete
Site Area: 3340 m²

From the architect. The building is a 40-classroom school constructed as an expanded replacement for a 19-classroom state school in Ortabay?r / Ka?&305;thane. It is within the intense and lowquality housing patterns of Ortabay?r, adjacent to the renowned financial center of Büyükdere Avenue on ’s European side, an area that has frequently been the subject of discussions of “urban regeneration” during the 2000s.

The school is located next to a district mosque and besides its education purpose aims to constitute a social center for the neighborhood. Completed despite significant financial constraints, the building was designed with a consciousness of its functional and social role. Within the intense urban fabric, the three rectangular blocks that make up the school have been recessed towards the edges of the plot, creating an open sports courtyard in the middle. The fourth and empty side of the plot is a semi-transparent boundary and green zone that prevents enclosure of the school behind high walls. This is an explicit expression of the school becoming a social center for the use of inhabitants out of school hours.

In addition to financial constraints and Ministry of Education Regulations, the guidance of the architectural office was also influential in the process. Structured around a central courtyard intended to serve as a local node, the building consists of three major interconnected masses. The five story classroom block marks the longest edge of the site. The lower three story administrative block is located adjacent to the mosque. Designed with five stories, the laboratory block houses a double hight indoor activity hall at the ground and basement floors, which can be used for sports also.

In places like Ka??thane where there are very few urban social facilities for public use, schools need to take on the role of small social centers for the use of the neighborhood. In this case, Nef Primary School provides proof that the school and surrounding open spaces have the potential to serve the inhabitants of the neighborhood as a public investment. Knowing this potential, the classrooms and laboratories are located on the upper floors, which can easily be isolated from the ground floor, while the units that can be opened for public use are on the ground floor, easily accessible from the outside. The library, located underneath the main classroom block, receives daylight from the sunken garden; the kindergarten underneath the administrative block is separated from older classes by a separate entrance and garden; the indoor activity hall at the basement gets daylight from the wide glass surfaces surrounding the central courtyard and the open sports court serves as a children’s playground, which the neighborhood lacks.

The building was designed as a traditional reinforced concrete structure. Stucco is used on the exterior facades so as to keep the memory of the republican schools. In the overall construction a brutal expression is the goal; Reinforced structural elements were left exposed in the inside and all the infill materials like partition walls were clearly expressed by white paint. The only color inside is the yellow of the floors.

As the building is designed as a single loaded block system, all the corridors which function as indoor play areas and meeting spaces for children during the breaks receive extensive daylight. The school was planned and constructed as a charity work by a construction company that has carried out several projects in Levent District.

NEF Primary School / CINICI Architects originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 03 Mar 2015.

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Mu-A / Inexdesign

21 hours 37 min ago

Architects: Inexdesign
Location: Jung-gu, Daegu, South
Architect In Charge: Won Myoung Hyun
Area: 105.0 sqm
Photographs: Jae Yoon Kim

Builder : Chang
Client: Geum Sik Yoon
Site Area: 139.50?

From the architect. In a forest of heavy concrete buildings, turning toward inside of the downtown main road to narrow and dense alleys, located near Yakjeongolmok of Donseongro, center of Daegu, the Korean style dessert cafe Mu-A is a space for time travel with fragrant tea in an alley where modern and contemporary history of Daegu is alive. This space where we can drop in while touring modern alleys, welcomes visitors with diverse improved traditional menus such as Chalddeok (glutinous rice cake), Jeolpyeon (pounded rice cake) and Seolgi (steamed rice cake), Buchimgae (vegetable pancake) in three colors, Sujeonggwa (cinnamon punch with persimon), and Sikhye (sweet rice punch), as if it reflects the feature of this alley.

Floating Structure nu-gak

This building borrows the shape of a traditional Korean many-storied building (Nu-gak), according to designer’s wish to embody a mass of structure floating in the air. The facade reinterprets the gate of the traditional building in which our ancestors felt season changes and breathed naturally. As we know Daegu is very hot in summer, and moreover,this building faces west with strong sunlight in the afternoon. Thus, the designer equipped a big motor-operated louver shading to control light and wind. Exterior scenery of the cafe Mu-A is not wonderful just like that of ordinary downtown back alley.

The punched louver showing exterior scenery also plays a role of bringing the strong afternoon sunlight and surrounding scenery into the interior space more softly by filtering them. The louver was derived from the traditional Bunhapmun (a sliding door to shut the plank-floor room off from the yard), and to which color of Hanji (traditional paper made from a mulberry tree) was applied. In addition to this, a flower muntin pattern, one of the traditional decoration techniques used at Buddhist temples and palaces, was also applied repetitively to both inside and outside.

Pleasure of Diverse Attractions

In terms of structure, the designer though out cantilever and floating mass of the first floor. The first floor which looks floating is large yard to embrace its surroundings. This is a traditional and buffering space between the alley and the building, and also an important element to neutralize difference between this building floating tranquilly and the crowdedness of the street. It expresses the layer of traditional space with skip floor by borrowing the method from a village with level difference by natural slope, and presents dynamic human traffic line and attractions.

‘Welcoming’ space on the stereo bate of the first floor tells the start of space. Human traffic line becomes complicated due to the interior space with six steps, which influences service style of each space. With this reason, interior space assumes the from grafting self-serving style on staff-serving style. Centering around the counter table on the first floor, there are a main kitchen and an auxiliary kitchen on the basement and the second floor each. Meals are sent from the main kitchen to each floor through a dumb waiter, and served in each floor. To employees, human traffic line of multi-storied building is more complicated than that of one-storied building.

However, the human traffic lines from the hall of the second floor to room and service area half floor up and from the hall half floor up, give diversity to the space through the repetition of wideness and narrowness. There is a small pond between the hall of the second floor and service area half floor up, and a flower muntin door has a fragrance in the middle of the space, revealing shy looks. The pond can be also used as a small stage for performance. Flower muntins are connected to the wall pattern and are in full bloom as thousands of flowers on the louver of the facade.

Ceiling of the third floor is high in order to give openness to visitors on the top floor, to attempt natural movement through human traffic line, and arranges the ‘tea room’, the most sacred place in this building. Wooden ceiling frames woven in three dimensions emphasize the identity of the building and play a role to stabilize the hanging tea room visually. In terms of structure, the tea room applicable to the fourth floor means a divine room and the bright sunlight pouring through skylight creates dreamlike atmosphere.

The designer used familiar materials like wood, steel, stone and paper as finishing materials, and tried to express this space plainly and cleanly.  For designers working with clients is all precious but that with clients giving full trust gives the most pleasant time. This work involved a series of time-consuming, complicated processes from design to construction. Thus, without the client’s trust, it could not be possible to finish this work. I would like to thank to the client again. For me was really valuable time to look back and learn more.

Mu-A / Inexdesign originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 03 Mar 2015.

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Spark Beijing Office / Spark Architects

22 hours 38 min ago

Architects: Spark Architects
Location: Dongsishitiao, Dongcheng, , 100027
Architect In Charge: Lin Li
Project Director: Jan Felix Clostermann, Christian Taeubert
Area: 500.0 sqm
Year: 2015
Photographs: Shu He

From the architect. The Liang Dian Design Centre on Dongsishitiao is home to the new Spark Beijing office; occupying 500 square meters on the second floor of a three story office building form the late 1980’s.

An annex glass box had been added to second floor of the existing building allowing for the exterior brick fac?ade to be experienced as an interior space.

“We looked at the present configuration of the space and decided to keep it uninterrupted while inserting our office program” says Spark’s Beijing director Jan Felix Clostermann.

The space is loosely zoned into a main work area, kitchen and gathering space, a large meeting room area, a model making room and smaller meeting room.

Demolishing the window up stands of the existing brick fac?ade towards the glass box gave way to a much desired permeability of the space.

Alongside the main work space a continuous wall of metal cladded swivel doors allow for a playful and flexible configuration of “open and close”.

When closed the metal panels catch subtle reflections of the surrounding office environment, while becoming a 20m long “wall of imagination” inviting project teams to pin up- and discuss their work.

The model making room, themed as “the ply room” is accessible via multiple routes through an extreme vertical space of what used to be a stairwell core.

The flux of the reception area, meeting room and kitchen can be discontinued via floor to ceiling swivel doors whenever activities require it.

“The architecture profession fuels on idea exchange, so we sought to provide open collaborative spaces that are fun, where people want to be” says Spark’s Beijing director Christian Taeubert.

Spark Beijing Office / Spark Architects originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 03 Mar 2015.

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Competition Seeks Architects to Redesign Downtown Cleveland’s Main Avenue Bridge Underpass

23 hours 37 min ago

Downtown Cleveland Alliance seeks a creative professional or team (architect, designer, artist, engineer, landscape architect or combination thereof) to propose unique and attractive solutions for the area under and around the Main Avenue Bridge Underpass, centered at the intersection of West 9th Street and Main Avenue in Downtown Cleveland. This location is a critical pedestrian, bicycle, and vehicular connection between the Warehouse District and the Flats East Bank, with infrastructure, history, and functional potential to inspire the highest level of creative treatments. Request for Qualifications are due Friday, March 6th by 4:30pm! More information, here.

News via Downtown Cleveland Alliance

Competition Seeks Architects to Redesign Downtown Cleveland’s Main Avenue Bridge Underpass originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 03 Mar 2015.

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Longbush Ecosanctuary Welcome Shelter / Sarosh Mulla Design

Wed, 04.03.2015 - 00:00

Architects: Sarosh Mulla Design
Location: Gisborne, New Zealand
Area: 150.0 sqm
Year: 2015
Photographs: Simon Devitt, Patrick Reynolds

Fabrication: Sarosh Mulla & 88 community volunteers
Client: Longbush Ecological Trust
Dimensions: 12m long x 12m wide x 6m high

From the architect. The Longbush Ecosanctuary Welcome Shelter is an innovative environmental education space designed, constructed and operated by a group of passionate volunteers, with the support of local businesses and charitable organisations.

Access to the Welcome Shelter is free of charge for all visitors and the project aims to promote active stewardship of our natural environment both in conservation areas and in our .

The project was generated and designed by the award winning designer Sarosh Mulla. Mr Mulla’s current doctoral research focuses on creating innovative forms of architecture for the New Zealand tourism industry, while continuing to promote the role of the architect as a leader within communities.

Mulla has led a team of 88 volunteers in the construction of the space that provides facilities for visiting school groups, ecologists and tourists. The design of the structure draws on the framing techniques of the Picturesque, but applies these through contemporary forms, which promote active engagement with the environment. Rather than simply viewing the landscape, visitors are encouraged to take part in the environmental restoration occurring at the ecosanctuary through the programs offered at the Welcome Shelter.

A large steel and fabric canopy provides shelter from the sun and rain for an outdoor classroom created on the hillside. Below the roof the form of this classroom is defined by the position of three timber enclosures and small retained gardens. The design plays with the connotations of natural and synthetic in the setting of the recovering environment.

Each timber enclosure provides a different service, including the storage of teaching material, ablution facilities and an office for the site ecologist. This office opens up to the exterior with a large drawbridge to create a level platform on teaching and demonstration days. Another enclosure includes a roof deck from which a stunning view of the valley can be appreciated. This deck is accessed via a traditionally made greenwood ladder made from a Manuka tree harvested from the building site.

Constructed from materials donated by 88 sponsors, the Welcome Shelter utilizes very simple construction techniques. The approach adopted aims to produce the maximum environmental program, through minimal architectural resources.

The Welcome Shelter is a gateway for visitors to this special environment, which includes several critically endangered native species. The ecosanctuary is approximately 120 hectares and over the past 15 years has been the rapidly restored through the efforts of Jeremy and Dame Anne Salmond. With the removal of invasive pests and weeds, alongside the planting of hundreds of thousands of native trees, the diverse ecology at Longbush is beginning to thrive again.

Never before in New Zealand history has such a large and diverse group of volunteers and sponsors created a piece of public architecture. The Welcome Shelter creates a new benchmark for high quality community generated architecture that responds to the needs of the local environment.

Longbush Ecosanctuary Welcome Shelter / Sarosh Mulla Design originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 03 Mar 2015.

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What Makes An Attractive City? Try These 6 Points.

Tue, 03.03.2015 - 23:30

Click here to view the embedded video.

Challenging the notion that beauty is subjective, Alain de Botton has made a case for attractive cities, believing that a city’s beauty is key to its success and citizens’ quality of life. The Swiss philosopher, author and founder of London’s The School of Life believes that attractiveness is the primary reason why many choose to vacation to Paris, and not Frankfurt.

“We think beauty is subjective, and so no one should say anything about it,” says Botton. “It’s a very understandable qualm, but it’s also horribly useful to greedy property developers.”

So, what makes a city attractive? Find out Botton’s six points for beautiful , after the break.

  1. Variety and order – “Order means balance, symmetry and repetition… Order is one of the reasons so many people love … However, excessive order can be just as much a problem.”
  2. Visible life – “There are streets that are dead and streets that are alive. And in general, we crave the live ones.”
  3. Compact – “All the most beautiful compact cities have squares… The ideal square must offer a sense of containment not claustrophobia.”
  4. Orientation and mystery – “By definition, cities are HUGE. But the cities that a lot of people love also have lots of little backstreets and small lanes where you can feel cozy and get a bit lost.”
  5. Scale – “Modern cities are all about BIG things. Joseph Campbell once wrote, ‘If you want to see what a society really believes in, look at what the biggest buildings on the horizon are dedicated too…’ The ideal height for any city block is 5 stories high – no more… Of course, occasionally there can be a huge building, but lets keep that for something really special – something all of humanity can love.”
  6. Make it local – “We don’t want building’s to look the same everywhere.”

News via CityLab

What Makes An Attractive City? Try These 6 Points. originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 03 Mar 2015.

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Apartment Refurbishment in Barcelona / Alventosa Morell Arquitectes

Tue, 03.03.2015 - 22:00

Architects: Alventosa Morell Arquitectes
Location: Nou Barris, Barcelona, España
Architects In Charge: Josep Ma. Alventosa, Marc Alventosa, Xavier Morell
Area: 67.0 sqm
Year: 2015
Photographs: Adrià Goula

Principal Builder: BBB Jordi
Wood Finishes And Wood Windows: Soldevila Construcció i decoració en fusta.

From the architect. The project consists of a total interior rehabilitation of a small flat, built at the beginning of the XX century. Our challenge in this project was to redesign some spaces to get bigger and comfortable ambients.

It was in very bad conditions and with too many rooms, spaces, in a small net floor area; so the approach to the project has been to intervene as much as possible in its original rooms distribution.

The intervention has created an update flat, in terms of functionality, performance and comfort, just with:

-Eliminating the wall from the previous bathroom to design a dining room with more natural light and increase the feeling of spaciousness.

-Changing the location of the kitchen. Now in a new space in the middle of the flat, independent but opened to the new dining room and the living room.

-Creating a volume made of oak wood that integrates the cupboards in the kitchen with the two doors giving access to the existing bedrooms.

-Locating the new bathroom where the kitchen was before.

After designing these four ideas about distribution we wanted to keep old valuable materials. We restored the ancient hydraulic mosaic, and the interior wooden doors. We had to change the old windows, though, to make the flat more comfortable. This old hydraulic mosaic is now an important decorative element in the flat.

Even though the budget was quite short, all the rooms have been resolved with modern criteria and materials. We reduced the cost to the minimum, without loosing the right feeling.

Apartment Refurbishment in Barcelona / Alventosa Morell Arquitectes originally appeared on ArchDaily, the most visited architecture website on 03 Mar 2015.

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