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August 20 2010


Urban Solid Waste Collection Central / Vaillo + Irigaray

© Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray

Architects: Vaillo + Irigaray & Galar
Location: Ripagaina, Huarte, Navarra, Spain
Project Manager: Daniel Galar
Rigger: Jose Ignacio Sola
Collaborators: David Eguinoa, Lucia Astrain, Luis Miguel Navarro, Juan Carlos de la Iglesia, Ángel Álvarez, Oscar Martínez, Xabier Tuñón, Isabel Franco
Structure: Tadeo Errea-LANDABE
Façades: ALTRES
Developer: Junta de Compensación AR1 of PSIS of Ripagaina
Contractor: AZYSA
Project Area: 832 sqm
Budget: 825,416 €
Project Year: 2006-2009
Photographs: Jose M. Cutillas, Antonio Vaillo, Daniel Galar

Urban Stomach

A CUSWC -central urban solid waste collection- is a big urban stomach: It aspires waste from where they originate, the swallows, separate and compact trucks to evacuate through the various points of treatment, reuse and recycling. Vacuuming and compact are the specific tasks of the plant.

A big sucker managed to introduce waste into the plant through a pipeline, which works great as a small city.

situation plan

The compact package waste classified in different formats minimized geometric volume.
It also functions as how to waste a great finisher, allowing different types of treatment and recycling.

The central mechanical appliances giant blanket – turbines, decanters, compaction filters,…-, all strung through the same waste – vial waste: underground pipe connection to each household: sphincter of the neighbourhood.

© Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray

Just as in the bio-logical analogy – a stomach, intestines and some conform sphincter using geometry responsible for paying his intimate workings and the requirement of “flow”, the CUSWC also stems from their own functional requirements derived radicals and flow mechanics.

In this sense, the format that takes the central role is the result of mechanical and volumetric constraints of both the machine directional flow as it encloses. The geometry takes the envelope function that reproduces the organs and internal movements. The container also distorts the garbage to digest, like make the intestines.

© Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray

Bio-morphic Architecture

A CUSWC is a clean building: a building is able to coexist with other uses of a city is not a building that has to hide: but most of them are factory buildings, industrial, “blind”, insensitive to environment.

unfolded skin

In this sense we wanted to give this central bio-morphic traits, can accentuate your personality for coexistence: it is a building that looks and smells: it has nose and eye.

His own inner workings – however-, require a noisy guts building: it is necessary to generate a building with different shells and layers of noise protection: it is generated for a building scales. A recognizable coating and fitted with a scale capable of likened by some form of mimesis, perhaps conceptually to the peculiarities of place and “culture” to be generated: ecological culture, a “green culture”.

© Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray

The contorted volumetry flakes wrapped with the same material, same construction system,-facades and deck- large format sheets (2,5mx1,5 m) are composed of leaf-lacquered aluminium can recycling, minimum thickness.

The construction system of the coating is based on a process of “optimization of the coating material” and therefore make their own strain of the thin veneer: it allows and encourages such a strain to generate an image of “scales swollen” capable to provide the appropriate scale to the composition of the pieces that make up the volume, while recalling that all digestion generates swelling due to internal gas of the process. The image of “patchwork” of focusing the intensity desired in the iconography.

Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray Aluminium - Urban Solid Waste Collection Central - Vaillo + Irigaray © Courtesy of Vaillo + Irigaray situation plan situation plan floor plan floor plan unfolded skin unfolded skin


Straddling Bus / Shenzhen Huashi Future Parking Equipment

© Shenzhen Huashi Future Parking Equipment

There are few things that are more annoying than sitting in bummer to bummer traffic.  Yet, as cities are expanding at rapid rates, our infrastructure simply cannot support the number of people, and so congestion becomes an every day obstacle we have to face.   As Bettina Wassener reported for the New York Times, for one China-based company, Shenzhen Huashi Future Parking Equipment,  the vicious cycle of a growing population which leads to more vehicles – and hence, more traffic – needed to be addressed.   And, along came their  super functional, extra-wide (20 ft) and extra-tall ‘Straddling Bus’.  The vehicle runs along fixed tracks and its main compartment is elevated to leave the street clear for cars driving underneath.   Plus, the vehicle is partially powered by the sun via panels on the roof and at bus stops.

More about the Straddling Bus after the break.

It is estimated that the vehicles, which hold up to 1,200 passengers each and travel at 40 kilometers per hour, will reduce traffic jams by 25-30% on main roads. The cost of construction for one bus and 25 miles of route facilities is around $7.4 million – one-tenth the cost of building a subway line of the same length!

© Shenzhen Huashi Future Parking Equipment

According to the Times, Youzhou Song, the vehicle’s designer said, “The straddling bus could replace up to 40 conventional buses, potentially saving the 860 tons of fuel that 40 buses would consume annually, and preventing 2,640 tons of carbon emissions.”

A pilot project for the vehicle is in the works in Beijing, a city that is motivated to reduce carbon emissions dramatically.

August 17 2010


Audenasa Building / Vaillo + Irigaray

© Jose Manuel Cutillas

Architects: Vaillo & Irigaray + Eguinoa
Location: Noain, Spain
Project Manager: David Eguinoa Erdozain
Collaborators: Daniel Galar, Lucia Astrain, Luis Miguel Navarro, Oscar Martínez, Ángel Álvarez, Juan Carlos de la Iglesia, Isabel Franco
Rigger: Iñaki Pérez
Structural engineering: Tadeo Errea- LANDABE
Facade engineering: LARUMBE (celosía); ALTRES (aluminum)
Promotor: Audenasa
Contractor: Eycons
Project Year: 2008-2009
Photographs: Jose Manuel Cutillas

floor plans

The building offers an image derived morphological genesis of his own: a tablet suspended, almost floating on the gentle slope green -slightly twisted-repeating the same gestures that the topography- and offers a gesture of successive concave ribs against the sun:

© Jose Manuel Cutillas

© Jose Manuel Cutillas


In a flat landscape -almost one-dimensional-, as is the highway, immeasurably longitudinal, the building from where it controls and directs the company, contorts, and stands as lookout (also longitudinal), as a new “lookout” observer… Two slabs of concrete lattice steel tape the or-ten blocks south and north reused tire. The picture of the complex aims to establish close ties to the movement and infrastructure relating to transport, and perhaps away from the usual urban readings in similar programs.

Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas Audenasa Building - Vaillo + Irigaray © Jose Manuel Cutillas situation plan situation plan floor plans floor plans elevations elevations section section

August 06 2010


Hanimaadhoo Airport / Haptic Architects + Narud Stokke Wiig Architects

© Haptic Architects + Narud Stokke Wiig Architects

Those flying to the Maldives, a nation in the Indian Ocean comprised of amazing coral islands, will be welcomed by a gently undulating airport designed by UK based Haptic Architects and Norway based Narud Stokke Wiig Architects.  The firms have collaborated to create this curvaceous terminal that sits in the lagoon so as not to detract from any of the islands’ beautiful coasts.

More about the airport after the break.

“Our proposal for Hanimaadhoo Airport aims to create a functional and efficient airport while preserving the natural shape and white coastline of the island. We believe our strategy will emphasize and advertise the unspoilt natural qualities of the Maldives,” explained Narud Stokke Wiig Architects.

© Haptic Architects + Narud Stokke Wiig Architects

The site strategy places the runway and the taxiway on the far north and east of the Island, with free space around the southern part for the future development of hotels, resorts, and retail.

© Haptic Architects + Narud Stokke Wiig Architects

The terminal itself has a dramatic timber diagrid roof with a highly insulated skin.  Solar panels are mounted on the roof and the design also includes passive strategies, such as proper orientation and rainwater harvesting, to preserve the natural essence of the islands and “promote the Maldives as a sustainable and environmentally conscious destination,” added Narud Stokke Wiig Architects.

As seen on Inhabitat. Renderings produced by Imaging Atelier

August 03 2010


WTC Transit Hub / Santiago Calatrava

Check out the latest video of Santiago Calatrava’s transit hub at the World Trade Center site, courtesy of the Wall Street Journal and funded by Brookfield Properties. Back in 2004, Calatrava first unveiled his vision for the transportation hub – a “mega-station” which will include PATH services and 12 subway lines – and it seems that we’ll still have to wait until 2014 for the project to be fully completed.   Although certain aspects of the design have been modified since 2004, the overall vision embodies Calatrava’s original conceptual ideas.  At $3.2 billion dollars, the station is an expensive, but vital, component of the new WTC complex.    Millions of commuters, tourists, and residents pass through the station every day, filtering in and out of one of the most powerful financial districts in the world.   The video’s alluring imagery of the main concourse piques our interest as Calatrava has opened the roof to allow natural light to flood the interior.  This strategy creates a more transparent and open space, which is unusual for a New York subway station, that can also be enjoyed from above as people in the towers look down upon the hub.  We are anxious to wait on the sleek platforms and walk down the commercial connection between the hub and the Winter Garden, but we’ll just have to patiently wait to see the final result!

July 28 2010


SBC – Sarpi Border Checkpoint by J. Mayer H. Architects

© J. Mayer H. Architects

J. Mayer H. Architects shared with us some images of this customs checkpoint, situated at the Georgian border to Turkey, at the shore of the Black Sea. With its cantilevering terraces, the tower is used as a viewing platform, with multiple levels overlooking the water and the steep part of the coastline, as well as for patrol officers keeping an eye on the border. In addition to the regular customs facilities, the structure also houses a cafeteria, staff rooms and a conference room. The building welcomes visitors to Georgia, representing the progressive upsurge of the country.

© J. Mayer H. Architects

Architects: J. Mayer H. Architects
Project Team: Juergen Mayer H., Jesko Malkolm Johnsson-Zahn, Christoph Emenlauer
Project: 2010-2011
Completion: 2011
Client: Ministry of Finance of Georgia
Project Supervisors: Levan Dvali, Giorgi Gejadze
Architects on Site: Daduna Shatashvili, Beka Fkhakadze
Structural Engineer: Zaza Abeslamidze
Contractor: JSC Transmsheni


Kulturlandschaft Paasdorf / feld72

© Courtesy of feld72

Architects: feld72
Location: Mistelbach, Austria
Client: Community of Paasdorf, Public Art Lower Austria
Floor Area: 1,590 sqm
Project Year: 2005-2007
Photographs: Courtesy of feld72


Would you choose between parking and public space?

Paasdorf is a small “street village” in Lower Austria. The task of feld72 was to position “Kulturlandschaft Paasdorf”– an art project that is known far beyond the borders of Austria – by means of a symbol on the village square.

© Courtesy of feld72

The design attempts to bring together synergetically two formative components: everyday (local population) and attention (visitors).

According to needs that change considerably (both during the day and during the different seasons) the square alters its appearance depending on how it is being used. Village square and car park are not separated into mono- functional zones but blend together to create a unity that can be read and used in a variety of ways. When not occupied by a car almost every parking space is something else – whether it be a wooden terrace , a flat pool of water, a play area, seating, an urban topography…

© Courtesy of feld72

exploded axo

The bus stop – the Wolkon – functions as a landmark and information compass, It is a kind of “stage” both for everyday life and for special events. The accessible roof is a lounge, DJ ’s pulpit, speaker’s corner, and open-air gallery….

How public this village square actually is always remains the responsibility of its users.

Kulturlandschaft Paasdorf - feld72 © Courtesy of feld72 Kulturlandschaft Paasdorf - feld72 © Courtesy of feld72 Kulturlandschaft Paasdorf - feld72 © Courtesy of feld72 Kulturlandschaft Paasdorf - feld72 © Courtesy of feld72 Kulturlandschaft Paasdorf - feld72 © Courtesy of feld72 Kulturlandschaft Paasdorf - feld72 © Courtesy of feld72 situation situation exploded axo exploded axo artists directory perspective artists directory perspective

July 20 2010


Lightsails / Söhne & Partner

© Gisela Erlacher

Architects: Söhne & Partner
Location: Millstaetter Lake, Carinthia, Austria
Consultant: In Association with Karl Sodek
Client: MTG
Structural Engineer: Werkraum Wien
Project Year: 2008
Photographs: Gisela Erlacher

concept image 01

© Gisela Erlacher

Lightsails as guiding symbols for the exhibition around the Millstaetter lake, Austria. The lighthouse is used as a metaphor to guide the visitors around the different exhibitions. Nowadays the lighthouse is used as a symbol of holidays, sea, adventure and water.

© Gisela Erlacher

The objects are abstract sails, as a “light-space-installation”. The objects are orientated to the lake. The lake Millstättersee is getting a tribune out of water, because the energy of the lake is trapped, converted and reflected as light. So the sails are working as a transmitter and receiver at the same time.


The illumination is reacting to the surrounding – the more people approaching the sails the more vibrate light. The illumination is also reacting to the temperature – they are constantly changing the colour. The colder the temperature the warmer the colour if light is getting.

Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher Lightsails - Söhne & Partner © Gisela Erlacher location plan location plan diagram diagram concept image 01 concept image 01 concept image 02 concept image 02 concept image 03 concept image 03

July 06 2010


Artistic amenity Stadshaard / Cie

© Jeroen Musch

Architect: Branimir Medić & Pero Puljiz, de Architekten Cie.
Location: Enschede, The Netherlands
Client: Essent Warmte
Artist: Hugo Kaagman
Building contractor: WAM & Van Duren Bouw
Realization: 2007-2009
Photos: Jeroen Musch, Hugo Kaagman

This power station is an instrument of education: designed to develop a sensibility for the consumption of energy and sustainable cohabitation. Combined heat and power plants are usually neutral industrial struc-tures that are situated at some inconspicuous location. By contrast, the Stadshaard (literally the ‘city hearth’) stands at a prominent spot in Roombeek, where a neutral building would be out of place. With the Stadshaard’s dimensions (a building 10 metres high with a 40-metre chimney) it would, moreover, be impossible to realize an ‘invisible’ building that merges with the surroundings.

© Jeroen Musch

The Stadshaard is a gateway building for the district of Roombeek, an eye-stopper and a point of refer-ence. Its basic form is simple, while its elevations are clad in one-metre-square panels with expressive motifs and figurative depictions. These are reminiscent of the delftware tiles that line Holland’s traditional open hearths and therefore hint that this structure might have something to do with fire and warmth: the City Hearth.

© Jeroen Musch

Delftware tiles often have figurative motifs that are anecdotes about everyday life. The figurative depic-tions for the Stadshaard allude to energy generation, to famous buildings or people from Enschede and to themes that recur often in the work and life of the artist Hugo Kaagman. The result is the biggest delft-ware artwork in the Netherlands.

CF026853a © Jeroen Musch CF026871a © Jeroen Musch CF026917 © Jeroen Musch CF026920 © Jeroen Musch CF026873a © Jeroen Musch CF026898 © Jeroen Musch CF026893 © Jeroen Musch CF026891 © Jeroen Musch CF026877 © Jeroen Musch 1en © Hugo Kaagman P1210042 © Hugo Kaagman P1030300 © Hugo Kaagman overview © Hugo Kaagman 00019C plan


The City Hall Void / Larry Hill Associates

Aerial View © Larry Hill Associates

Carving out a gigantic void in the middle of Copenhagen’s City Hall Square, Larry Hill’s conceptual approach for a new metro station calls attention to the activity of passengers as well as the trains.   “The project aims to put the public in the City Hall Square, as well as on it. The void and the metro machine is thus a seamless part of the city,” explained the architect.

More images and more about the project after the break.

Site Plan Diagram © Larry Hill Associates

The scale-less amorphous mesh covers a large portion of the square and gently slopes from street level to platform level.   The void, which measures 15m dep, 70m wide and 140m long, is covered with a transparent grid which provides “spectacular entrances to the metro” – three main portals that can accommodate thousands of passengers each day.

Surface Diagram © Larry Hill Associates

Structurally, H-profile beams and T-beams support the steel mesh surface with paired rounded steel columns organizing the metro tunnels.  ”The metro itself is penetrating the concave shape, incoming trains is then completely revealed to the public,” explained Hill.

© Larry Hill Associates

“The space below, apart from being a transit hub, is also meant to be a negative imprint of the city itself…that lets one experience the noise, light and movement of the inner city from below. The project is not adding programs on the square itself, that way it is still a natural place for mass-gatherings and open air concerts,” added Hill.

Section © Larry Hill Associates

Currently, the project is more focused on the underground zone as a purely spatial experience, and the project lacks other programmatic activities.  Since this skin covers much of the public square, perhaps, with further development, the surface can be transformed to more functionally respond to different activities happening in, on, around or under it.    In this way, the skin can become more than a surface treatment because by supporting public activity, the surface can actually become the Square.

City Hall Void 1 Aerial View © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 2 Plan Diagram © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 3 Site Plan Diagram © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 4 Site Plan © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 5 Surface Diagram © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 6 Section © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 7 Section © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 8 Perspective © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 9 Detail © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 10 © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 11 © Larry Hill Associates City Hall Void 12 © Larry Hill Associates

Architect: Larry Hill Associates

Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Program: Concept proposal for a metro station and urban plaza.

Year: 2010

June 24 2010


More on Phase Two / Field Operations + DS+R

The Spur

A few days ago, we shared some information about the second segment of Field Operations and DS+R’s High Line, including construction shots to show the progress being made. Today, we share renderings from the firms which illustrate some of the cool features we can look forward to seeing.  The second phase will include a “spur” – a framed space recalling the historical billboards that once attached to the railway, a “floating platform” which rests above the exposed girders, “Chelsea Thicket” – a dense stretch of trees and shrubs, a “flyover” where the walkway rises into the canopy of sumac trees, and of course, a grand lawn for lounging.

Take a look at the renderings after the break, and we’ve also included a video of the whole project to see how the pieces will come together.

Floating Platform

30th Street Access Point

Wildflower Field


The Great Lawn

Chelsea Thicket


As seen on FastCompany

Renderings from DS + R and Field Operations

Video from FastCompany

June 21 2010


Final departure lounge Terminal 2 Mexico City International Airport / SPACE

© Willem Schalkwijk

Architects: SPACE – Juan Carlos Baumgartner
Location: Mexico City, Mexico
Area: 1,000 m2
Photography: Willem Schalkwijk

© Willem Schalkwijk

SPACE was selected from among several architecture firms to design the new final departure lounge for a recognized brand of financial services and credit cards. This project is located at terminal 2 of Mexico City airport.

The challenge was not straight-forward, the customer was looking for a design that brought together many things at the same time. The main challenges were to generate a multi-purpose space that would represent a contemporary and cosmopolitan image that summarize the brand to design a new experience, in a globalized world in which the brands and products are in a headlong race to position themselves in the minds of the customers to use built spaces as a natural extension of the brand, a complicated but vital challenge.

© Willem Schalkwijk

A specialized Branding team was used for this project, who together with the architects generated a hybrid methodology as a result of mixing Branding and architecture. The project design concepts emerged as a consequence of a search for the definition of the brand’s “emotional promise”, that is to say that the project was developed around the idea of designing a group of well worked out emotions that would develop as a consequence of a brand experience.

To be convincing, the experience would have to be a sensory experience, an experience that would include all senses and that would seek to arouse the emotions.

© Willem Schalkwijk

The importance of emotions:

At the beginning of this century neuromarketing started to be used in England as part of the development of a new science using magnetic resonance to define what motivates consumers in their decision making. Such studies have had many revealing results but one in particular has generated a new way of understanding architecture.

The way that the brain codifies the majority of the information that it receives is by translating it into emotions, like this it gives a value to things, good brands are connected emotionally with their users through experiences and the great majority of the experiences take place in built spaces. In order for architecture to be transcendent it will have to be defined as starting with the search for emotions that will enable it to connect with its users.

© Willem Schalkwijk

In the case of the final departure lounge the fundamentally functional aspects were worked on at the same time as working on the emotional definition of the space, the great majority of the persons that use these spaces take advantage of them to work before getting on a plane. The emotional solutions would have to be very functional as well being able to give a solution to all the users’ different needs and work habits. That is how this space is made up with some private meeting rooms, informal meeting areas with virtual divisions, Wi-Fi and support areas. Together with these working spaces, the final departure lounge also has recreation and entertainment areas, such as the lounges for a game of dominos or cards, a small massage room, and a beauty-hairdresser’s salon.

In general this space is without any doubt a taster of what many other office building spaces will be like in the not so distant future, spaces that will represent properly the expectations of their brands and that will be sufficiently flexible to practically support any way of working and meeting. The project was developed with a methodology generated by SPACE in which all projects seek to be designed in a sustainable manner.

This space consumes around 50% of the energy that other similar spaces commonly consume, by means of openings in the ceiling that let in natural light, the design maximizes the usage of daylight in the interiors, additionally generating extremely natural and pleasant sensations. The materials utilized in the project have a high recycled material content, and the majority of them are easily renewable.

© Willem Schalkwijk © Willem Schalkwijk © Willem Schalkwijk © Willem Schalkwijk © Willem Schalkwijk © Willem Schalkwijk © Willem Schalkwijk © Willem Schalkwijk © Willem Schalkwijk

June 20 2010


Phase 2 of the High Line

Looking north toward the Hudson Yards

Field Operations and DS+R’s High Line has been enjoyed by many ever since its opening, but we’ve been waiting patiently for the next segment to be finished.  And, thanks to Curbed.com, we’re able to share some recent construction shots of the progress being made.

Check out more photos and more about the second phase after the break.

Denari's H23

This next phase runs in a straight line parallel to Tenth Avenue from West 20th up to West 28th Street, where the neighboring buildings rise high against the old tracks.  Although the already finished part of the project sometimes brings pedestrians up to office and residential windows, in this new section, “the proximity between rails and residents is both a bit unnerving and a tad tantalizing.”

For instance, along  23rd Street, the slanting windows of Neil Denari’s HL23 will allow people resting on the proposed long green lawn to look right in to the rooms.  A tad farther north on 24th Street, a private patio sheltered by a rustic fence may not provide ample privacy as it sits only inches from the park’s edge. And balconies off a residential building will be no longer provide a private view to their users. While these moments may be a little awkward, they add something to the overall experience of the project and, when teamed with the planned design components, result in a successful urban renewal project.

The second segment ends at a wide curve on 30th Street with perfect views of the Hudson, and currently, the team is acquiring the final stretch of tracks for phase three.

Enjoy the photos and we’ll keep you updated.

Images courtesy of Curbed.com

June 15 2010


Pearl River Necklace / NL Architects

Hong Kong Boundaries Crossing Facilities

Dutch NL Architects newest bridge is part of their proposal to connect Hong Kong with the mainland of China.  The bridge’s dynamic twisted form is a great resolution to the  differences in driving styles, namely that in Hong Kong, people drive on the left side of the road and in the mainland China, they drive on the right side.

More images and more about the bridge after the break.

Hong Kong Boundaries Crossing Facilities

To address the changes in driving, the architects have designed the road flipper – a device designed to ‘celebrate’ the traffic switch. It aims to redirect traffic in an efficient and safe way by physically twisting the roads.

Bisecting the Bridge

In addition to the bridge, NL Architects have proposed to make some adjustments to the master plan to improve the area. The ‘necklace’ is formed by an archipelago of artificial islands along the border of Hong Kong and China.

Overview of Islands

Where the two sections meet

Plan of Pearl Necklace Islands

As seen on designboom.

June 11 2010


AD Classics: Centre Georges Pompidou / Renzo Piano + Richard Rogers

© conservapedia.com

In the 1970’s architects Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, both unknown at the time, collaborated and erected one of the most famous and radical buildings of our time, Centre Georges Pompidou. The cultural center in Paris, France turned our world inside out, literally. It all began with Georges Pompidou, President of France from 1969 to 1974, who wanted to construct a cultural center in Paris that would attract visitors and be a monumental aspect of the city. Receiving more than 150 million visitors since is completion thirty three years ago, there is no doubt that Pompidou’s vision became a successful reality.

More information on Centre Georges Pompidou after the break.

In order to choose the architects for the project, the president held a competition and many entered, including some of the most famous architects in France at the time. People were astonished, however, when the design of Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, both not famous at the time, won the competition. Their entry exemplified constructivism and was a high-tech modern cultural center structured with a system gerberettes and trusses unlike anything seen in the architectural world before.

© NJIT - Competition Drawing

Their concept, depicted in one of their competition drawings as a collage, was portraying the museum itself as movement. The other concept in their design, and perhaps the most obvious, was exposing all of the infrastructure of the building. The skeleton itself engulfs the building from its exterior, showing all of the different mechanical and structure systems not only so that they could be understood but also to maximize the interior space without interruptions.

© Courtney Traub

The different systems on the exterior of the building are painted different colors to distinguish their different roles. The structure and largest ventilation components were painted white, stairs and elevator structures were painted a silver gray, ventilation was painted blue, plumbing and fire control piping painted green, the electrical elements are yellow and orange, and the elevator motor rooms and shafts, or the elements that allow for movement throughout the building, are painted red. One of the “movement” elements that the center is most known for is the escalator (painted red on the bottom) on the west facade, a tube that zigzags up to the top of the building providing visitors with an astonishing view of the city of Paris.


The Centre Pompidou houses the Musée National d’Art Moderne, which is Europe’s largest museum for modern art. Also located in the vast open interior is the Bibliothèque publique d’information, a huge public library, and a center for music and acoustic research known as IRCAM. The flat open site upon which it is located is a constant exterior stage for urban events. The centre was officially opened on January 31, 1977 and has since then integrated high-tech architecture and urbanism as a movement and spectacle for the city to experience everyday.

Centre Pompidou-Metz, © Flickr: User - Eric Schoendorf

On May 12, 2010 the sister of Centre Georges Pompidou, named Centre Pompidou-Metz, opened its doors in Metz, France. The building was designed by Shigeru Ban and Jean de Gastines. The building is a museum for modern and contemporary art and was designed to resemble a traditional Chinese hat, forcing function to follow form. It incorporates innovative carpentry in its structure composed of sixteen kilometers of glued laminated timber that intersect to form a hexagonal mesh. For more information on the new center visit the Centre Pompidou-Metz official website.

© conservapedia.com © NJIT © Francis Toussaint © Francis Toussaint © NJIT © NJIT © Francis Toussaint © Francis Toussaint © Courtney Traub © Francis Toussaint Centre Pompidou-Metz, © Flickr: User - Eric Schoendorf © NJIT - Competition Drawing © Simon Fieldhouse - Elevation Detail Drawing

Architects: Renzo Piano + Richard Rogers
Location: Beaubourg, Paris, France
Structural Engineer: Ove Arup & Partners
Project Year: 1971-1977
Photographs: Depending on the photograph: Provided by New Jersey Institute of Technology, greatbuildings.com, Francis Toussaint, Courtney Traub, and on Flickr: Eric Schoendorf
References: Provided by Centre PompidouNew Jersey Institute of Technology, and The New York Times

June 04 2010


Solar Energy Provides Energy Independence

Solar energy prices from last 10 to 15 years had declined an average of 4% per year. A lot of progress has been made for increasing the cell’s efficiency, and manufacturing economies of scale are the underlying drivers of this price decrease. The figures in the Solarbuzz Global Price survey clearly show that prices had declined consistently over the last two years.

Solar Energy CSP Technolohy

A solar energy system for home usually cost around $8-10 per Watt. If the government incentive programs exist and coupled with lower prices, secured through volume purchases then installed costs for solar panels can become as low as $3-4 watt, means that 10-12 cents per kilowatt hour can be achieved. If there is no incentive programs then solar energy costs range between 22-40 cents/kWh for very large PV systems.

Other system that is used in large power stations is the concentrating solar power (CSP) technology. It’s a large collection of mirrors or lenses which are used to produce heat or directed towards PV systems. CSP technology costs $2-$4 per Watt. Some had estimated that these types of solar arrays can produce 25% of the world’s energy needs by 2050. It’s expected also that CSP costs will become as low as 6-7 cents per kWh, which is almost equal to conventional energy production. CSP industry is growing rapidly in Spain and United States.

Solar energy already have remarkable affect on world economy. According to the Department of Energy in United States, market for PV is expected to be around $ 27 billion dollars by 2020 and it will create 150,000 new jobs. As a matter of fact solar energy allows the countries without a grid infrastructure to power isolated areas, and no hurdle in receiving a free source of energy from sun. The distribution transmission lines are having life, which ends with passage of time. Even in United States those distribution transmission lines are becoming critical due to aging infrastructure and local emission errors. That’s why solar energy in a way is free from such troubles, and it provides energy independence, for example in Hawaii’s Mauna Lani Bay Hotel’s had installed PV cells on the roof top, which produce 75kW of energy and this solar panel array is expected to pay itself off in 5 years.

It is calculated that 25,000 square kilometers of solar panels can produce all of the US electricity needs for one year, and obviously this amount of land is available in the United States. If we see the figures then we’ll know that more land is being used to grow ethanol currently.

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May 22 2010


The International Parking Institute 2010 Awards

Car Park One at Chesapeake, Oklahoma City

The International Parking Institute (IPI) has announced the winners of their 2010 International Parking Institute’s Awards of Excellence Competition. Each year, the competition recognizes world-class examples of parking design and program innovation.

This year’s winners reflect a parking industry trend toward sustainability with many of the projects incorporating LEED certification, energy efficient lighting, use of solar panels, advanced technologies and innovative approaches that reduce the need for more parking spaces.

To see all the winners, click here. The three awards of excellence after the break.

Towson Town Center Garage Expansion

A key part of the transformation of Towson Town Center from a simple indoor shopping mall to a premier shopping destination was the expansion of an existing parking facility to accommodate the mall’s growth. In addition to featuring an inviting walkway with ornate ceilings and vibrant lighting which connects the garage to the mall, the expansion includes a significant amount of mixed-used space for additional retail and dining, giving Towson Town Center a welcoming, pedestrian-friendly “main street” feel.

Car Park One at Chesapeake, Oklahoma City

The positive experience for visitors of Car Park One begins on entry, where displays reading “Welcome Back” or “Have a Great Day” greet them. Bright white walls and long sight lines provide a sense of security, while bold graphics and primary colors provide an easy way to for visitors to navigate. An interior atrium flooded with natural light sustains the positive mood. Car Park One does all this while appearing unrecognizable as a garage from the outside thanks to a “transparent” mesh wall which conceals vehicles from view and turns alternately gold, purple, yellow and blue in the sunlight.

Sony Electronics Headquarters Parking Structure

The new parking garage at Sony Electronics’ San Diego headquarters was designed both with Sony’s employees and the environment in mind. Built to match the new office building it neighbors, the garage is connected to the building by more than just their matching stone and glass facades. A glass-railed bridge provides employees with direct access not only to the parking structure, but to the fitness center, activity deck and basketball court atop it. In addition, the garage was built to LEED Silver certification specifications by incorporating solar panels, preferred parking for carpools and energy efficient vehicles, covered bicycle parking, natural storm water filtration and native, drought tolerant landscaping.

May 19 2010

Reclaim the Streets, Put the Brakes on Car Traffic
Image credit: Let Ideas Compete/Flickr Cars promise mobility, and in a largely rural setting they provide it. But in an urbanizing world, where more than half of us live in cities, there is an inherent conflict between the automobile and the city. After a point, as their numbers multiply, automobiles provide not mobility but immobility, as well as increased air pollution and the health problems that come with it. Urban transport systems based on a combination of rail lines, bus lines, bicycle pathways, and pedestrian walkways offer the best of all possible world...Read the full story on TreeHugger

May 12 2010


Kolelinio / Martin Angelov

In January, Angelov’s provocative idea for a second circulation lane, which allowed bicycles to travel across steel wires, sparked quite a debate.    Angelov has branched off this initial idea to form a new concept for urban transportation. Kolelinio takes the wire system found in the Kolelinia experiment to a new level by creating a seemingly part ski-lift part roller coaster line that will zip people around the city.  The proposal offers a fresh outlook on weightless transportation that can be implemented now, instead of waiting for the depletion of petroleum before finding a greener way.

A great video and more about the project after the break.

The project divides the city into a car zone and a car-free zone, with interchange points surrounding the car-free zone for users to switch to their Kolelinio.  A network of wire lines not only transports people to major drop off zones, but also allows users to be dropped off at interstitial spaces like certain intersections that would be elevated on platforms.

The line changes heights based on the ground condition.   For instance, in a dense traffic zone, the line is elevated quite high off the ground, and it returns to ground level after bypassing the crowded intersections.

This radical idea illustrates Angelov’s recurring fascination with transportation and his intent to challenge the notion of a contemporary city.  This step marks a new stage of development for the idea, and while there are details that still need to be worked out, one can’t help but wonder what it would feel like to zip around his city, getting a new perspective on the urban environment while quickly avoiding any vehicular congestion.

May 11 2010

NewNet Investor Profile: Peter Rossbach, Impax New Energy Investors

Operating at the infrastructure level of renewable energy means that overvaluation of assets is rarely a problem, says Peter Rossbach of Impax New Energy Investors. However, investors who do not fully understand project finance, execution and risks can still trip up less experienced participants.
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