Archinect - News 2015-11-26T16:36:12-05:00 Norman Foster says he has "no power as an architect, none whatsoever" – only advocacy Alexander Walter 2015-11-23T12:19:00-05:00 >2015-11-26T01:18:31-05:00 <img src="" width="514" height="321" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>"Do you believe in infrastructure?&rdquo; asks Norman Foster, with challenge in his voice. He does. Infrastructure, he says, is about &ldquo;investing not to solve the problems of today but to anticipate the issues of future generations&rdquo;. [...] &ldquo;I have no power as an architect, none whatsoever. I can&rsquo;t even go on to a building site and tell people what to do.&rdquo; Advocacy, he says, is the only power an architect ever has.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Related news on Archinect:</p><ul><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Prairie futurism: designs revealed for the new Chicago Apple store</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The In Crowd: review of "Conversations with Architects: In the Age of Celebrity"</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The selective amnesia of Foster + Partners' Maspero Triangle District Masterplan</a></li></ul> Fuller Challenge winner says his GreenWave 3D ocean farm concept "could feed the world" Alexander Walter 2015-11-20T13:15:00-05:00 >2015-11-20T17:18:51-05:00 <img src="" width="514" height="726" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>So Smith invented the world&rsquo;s first 3D ocean farm. Not only does his model aim to reduce overfishing, but it also attempts to mitigate the effects of climate change. [...] With scalability in mind, Smith wanted his model to be simple and replicable. To that end, GreenWave supports other fish farmers to get create their own 3D ocean gardens. &ldquo;If you were to take a network of our farms totaling the size of Washington state, technically you could feed the world,&rdquo; Smith said.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Learn more about Bren Smith's award-winning GreenWave farming system when Archinect first announced him winning the 2015 Fuller Challenge last month:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">GreenWave's 3D ocean farm initiative wins the 2015 Buckminster Fuller Challenge</a></p> Students endure the final home stretch at the U.S. Solar Decathlon 2015 Justine Testado 2015-10-18T16:34:00-04:00 >2015-10-24T16:11:19-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="296" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>The sun beat down onto the asphalt grounds of the Orange County Great Park in Irvine, California, where a village of 14 solar-powered houses popped up for the U.S. Department of Energy&rsquo;s <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Solar Decathlon</a>. Multi-disciplinary <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">teams of college students</a> worldwide dedicate two years to designing and planning their institution&rsquo;s house, then spend just nine days assembling them from scratch in Irvine.&nbsp;Then, the competition begins.</p><p>Teams are tasked with constructing the house that best blends affordability and consumer appeal, and demonstrates optimal energy production and efficiency. The houses are evaluated in <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">10 contests</a>&nbsp;based on merits of performance and livability. The team who scores the most out of a maximum 1,000 points is crowned the overall winner. Held biennially, the Decathlon attracts ambitious students who want to push the boundaries of the future of sustainable technology and housing, while honing their technical skills and toughening their skin for their forthcoming careers.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""><br><img title="" alt="" src=""><br><em>"S...</em></p> Renzo Piano Building Workshop redesigns Moscow power station into art site Julia Ingalls 2015-10-15T14:21:00-04:00 >2015-10-24T15:17:17-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="386" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>Instead of belching oppressive fumes over <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Moscow</a>'s recently pedestrianized Red October District, the iconic smokestacks of the century-old GES2 power station will be transformed into conduits for ventilation as part of the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Renzo Piano Building Workshop</a>'s sustainable redesign of the facility into an art site for the V-A-C Foundation.&nbsp;</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>Spearheaded by the Building Workshop's 46-year-old Paris-based partner&nbsp;Antonio Belvedere, the site will fit into a 150 meter by 150 meter square and feature three main "poles": Welcoming, Education, and Exhibitions.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>The latter two poles are conceived of as interior spaces, and will incorporate classrooms, residency spaces, and a flexible gallery that can accommodate a variety of different artistic mediums.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>The largely outdoor Welcoming pole will include a sculpture garden, restaurant/cafe, library, an indoor/outdoor piazza, and serve as host for live events and temporary art installations.&nbsp;</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p> Powering your (SOM-designed) house with your car (and reverse) Nicholas Korody 2015-10-14T14:55:00-04:00 >2015-10-14T14:55:30-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="343" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>A research team from Oak Ridge National Laboratory's (ORNL) Department of Energy has created a new model for how we can connect the way we power our homes and vehicles. Dubbed AMIE... the platform features special technology that allows a bi-directional flow of energy between a dwelling and a vehicle. In other words, the house can fuel the car and the car can fuel the house. What's more, ORNL used 3D printing technology to build the dwelling and the vehicle...</p></em><br /><br /><p><img title="" alt="" src=""><br><br>AMIE, or Additive Manufacturing Integrated Energy, is a hybrid of different futuristic technologies, mashed together into a single platform. First, both the house and the vehicle were 3D printed.<br><br>The former, a single-room structure, was designed in collaboration with Skidmore, Owings and Merril and features vacuum insulated panels, a micro-kitchen, and a rooftop photovoltaic system.<br><br><img title="" alt="" src=""><br><br>The car, despite looking a bit like something from Mad Max, can be modified with new, 3D printed parts. It includes an electric hybrid power-train that uses natural gas to supplement the energy provided by the house.<br><br>Right now, it's a heavy vehicle, but researchers are working to make it lighter, as well as experimenting with external combustion engines, bio-fuel powered internal combustion engines, hydrogen fuel cells, and flow batteries.<br><br><img title="" alt="" src=""><br><img title="" alt="" src=""><br><br>The real jaw-dropping element of the prototype is that it allows a bi-directional flow of energy: from the car to the house, and vice versa.<br><br>Today, many electric cars can b...</p> Africa's challenges and opportunities to get urbanization right Alexander Walter 2015-10-14T14:15:00-04:00 >2015-10-24T00:43:02-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="191" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>This is important for Africa, where despite high urbanisation rates the development focus has been primarily rural. Consider Ghana. The country&rsquo;s urban population has grown from four million in 1984 to more than 14 million today. Fifty one percent of Ghanaians now live in cities. While urbanisation rates vary across Africa, Ghana reflects an overall global trend towards a predominantly urban future. Ghana demonstrates how cities can be highly productive in Africa.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Related on Archinect:</p><ul><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">MASS Design Group to propose "Bauhaus of Africa" at U.N. Summit</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Chinese Urbanism takes root in Africa</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">A Look at Africa's Modernist Architecture</a></li></ul> GKD LEEDing The Way In Sustainable Building Products Sponsor 2015-10-13T09:00:00-04:00 >2015-10-14T14:33:00-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="330" border="0" title="" alt="" /><br><em><strong>This post is brought to you by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">GKD Metal Fabrics</a>.</strong></em><br>&nbsp;<p>In the ever-growing multitude of green building products available in today&rsquo;s market, one material that doesn&rsquo;t always come straight to mind is stainless steel. But this often overlooked material holds a wealth of sustainability benefits that grow tenfold when applied and bolstered by technology such as woven metal mesh. <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">GKD-USA</a> has harnessed the inherent sustainability characteristics of stainless steel, using the material as a medium for creating striking, LEED-worthy building exteriors.</p><p>Stainless steel by its very nature, offers sustainable characteristics. Depending on the manufacturer, stainless steel used in metal fabrics can contain as much as 35% post-industrial and 25% post-consumer recycled content. This recyclability directly correlates with minimizing waste. The process of recycling stainless steel involves no health hazardous materials. Additionally, stainless steel:</p><ul><li>does not require a surface coating that can deteriorate ...</li></ul> Werner Sobek believes we could live in entirely renewable-energy-powered cities by 2020 Julia Ingalls 2015-10-07T15:02:00-04:00 >2015-10-23T21:03:35-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="364" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>After building 2014's&nbsp;Aktivhaus B10, a house that generates twice as much energy as it uses for its own needs via renewable sources, architect <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Werner Sobek</a> believes that we have all the technology we need to live in entirely emissions-free cities in only five years. He also understands that to make this shift, he will need the full support of the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">construction</a> and <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">automotive industries</a>.&nbsp;</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&ldquo;The automotive industry is driving forward the creation of ever more powerful, longer-lasting <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">batteries</a>," Sobek said. "At the same time, the construction industry is working on such solutions as a retrofittable building automation system that can noticeably reduce the energy consumption of existing buildings in a very short amount of time.&rdquo;</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>Sobek believes that <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">the efficient city model</a> could be brought into being via a "Sisterhood Principle" of data sharing, whereby multiple houses, even city districts, exchange information about what energy they are using, storing, and generating, and correspondingly ...</p> Tarmac has invented a "thirsty concrete," to help mitigate flooding Nicholas Korody 2015-09-28T16:57:00-04:00 >2015-09-30T13:55:07-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="212" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>During the first few weeks of August 2007, the American Midwest was devastated by heavy and repeated flash flooding as a result of Hurricane Dean and Tropical Storm Erin dumping massive amounts of rain on several states. And of the US$549 million or so in property damage that came from it, more than two-thirds was caused by water running off pavements or overflowing from drainage systems. So what's the solution?</p></em><br /><br /><p>Alongside a video that's quickly circulating on social media, Tarmac has announced a new type of porous concrete meant to help mitigate flooding by absorbing water.<br><br>Capable of taking in some 4,000 litres in the first minute and an average of 600 liters per minute, per meter squared, the concrete has been named "Topmix Permeable."</p><p>The material comprises a permeable surface layer of large pebbles, with an "attenuation layer" below that diverts the water flow back to groundwater and drainage systems, helping to not only prevent flooding, but reduce waste as well.&nbsp;<br><br>Alas &ndash; the concrete wouldn't work in freezing temperatures, so it's only really applicable for regions that are both temperate and vulnerable to flooding.&nbsp;</p><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">h/t Science Alert</a><br><br>Check out the video below:<br>&nbsp;</p> Will turning California farmland into residential development help save water? Alexander Walter 2015-07-30T21:00:00-04:00 >2015-08-03T17:12:38-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="286" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The drought in California has gone on so long, and is so severe, that it's beginning to change the way people are designing residential communities &mdash; in unexpected ways, and unexpected places. [...] There will also be a system for treating and sending wastewater back into the aquifer underneath the city. [...] Not everyone is convinced it will use less water. Phil Desatoff is with a local water district that is suing Reedley over the development's environmental review.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Got some design solutions up your sleeve that could help&nbsp;alleviate California's ongoing historic drought? Check out Archinect's recently launched <strong><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Dry Futures</a></strong>&nbsp;ideas competition, and submit your entry by September 1st.&nbsp;</p><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img title="" alt="" src=""></a></p><p><em>Have an idea for how to address the drought with design? Submit your ideas to the&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Dry Futures competition</a>!</em></p> The sudden drought gold rush for California landscapers may be over Alexander Walter 2015-07-15T14:38:00-04:00 >2015-08-03T17:13:34-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="661" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>These have been boom times for companies that rip out lawns and replace them with drought-tolerant landscaping, but now their business might be drying up. The Metropolitan Water District said Thursday it&nbsp;would no longer offer rebates to entice homeowners to get rid of their lawns because the agency ran out of money much sooner than it expected. That is bad news for [...] landscape contractor in Los Angeles. Grass removal has become about 40 percent of his business, driven by the rebates.</p></em><br /><br /><p>As a result of the sudden end of the government incentives, some Los Angeles landscape contractors, that had made turf removal their main business in the past months, began laying off staff. The <em>LA Times</em> <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">reports</a>: "Turf Terminators, which ballooned from a staff of three to more than 450 over the last several months, laid off 30% of its employees and furloughed an additional 40%, the company said Friday in a statement to The Times."</p><p>Previously on the topic of California's severe drought:</p><ul><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The best lawn for California's drought may still be green</a></li><li><a title="As Californians let their lawns turn golden, water conservation targets were exceeded in May" href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">As Californians let their lawns turn golden, water conservation targets were exceeded in May</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Enlisting the Internet of Things against California's historic drought</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">California Governor Mandates Water Restrictions</a></li></ul><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img title="" alt="" src=""></a></p><p><em>Have an idea for how to address the drought with design? Submit your ideas to the&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Dry Futures competition</a>!</em></p> As Californians let their lawns turn golden, water conservation targets were exceeded in May Alexander Walter 2015-07-07T18:51:00-04:00 >2015-08-03T17:10:11-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="386" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Californians in May shot past Gov. Jerry Brown's water conservation targets in response to the drought emergency [...]. New numbers, released Wednesday, show that the state's ambitious conservation campaign is working, with statewide residential water use declining 28.9 percent in May from its baseline 2013 levels. The figures surpassed Brown's order in April to cut water use statewide by 25 percent.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Click <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">here</a> to read the full report issued by the California&nbsp;State Water Resources Control Board.</p><p>Drought-related news on Archinect:</p><ul><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Enlisting the Internet of Things against California's historic drought</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">California Water Crisis? Now there's a board game for that!</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">California Farmers Using Oil Wastewater during Drought</a></li><li><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">California Governor Mandates Water Restrictions</a></li></ul><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img title="" alt="" src=""></a></p><p><em>Have an idea for how to address the drought with design? Submit your ideas to the&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Dry Futures competition</a>!</em></p> Lego to ditch oil-based plastic Nicholas Korody 2015-07-07T09:13:00-04:00 >2015-07-11T21:02:33-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="344" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Lego's 57-year-old toy empire was built on plastic. But now the giant Danish toy company is investing millions into getting rid of it. By 2030, Lego bricks will no longer be made from ABS, the oil-based plastic in the 60 billion blocks the company makes each year.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Lego has already spent a good deal of effort trying to minimize its carbon footprint, including investing in wind farms. But the plastic toys themselves account for roughly three-quarters of their footprint.&nbsp;</p><p>Three years ago, the company set a goal&nbsp;to find a sustainable alternative to petroleum-based products by 2030. Now, they're spending 1 billion Danish kroner into a new plant specifically for experimenting with sustainable materials. Lego already utilizes recycled plastic, but because of difficulties with the recycling process, they're turning to bio-based plastic alternatives.</p><p>"We're looking at every opportunity out there that's more sustainable than what we have today,"&nbsp;Roar Trangbaek, press representative for Lego Group,&nbsp;told FastCo.Exist.</p> Kevin Daly's Backyard BI(h)OME provides affordable housing for humans and wildlife Julia Ingalls 2015-06-18T15:40:00-04:00 >2015-06-22T21:18:30-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="386" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>Fittingly, Poolside&rsquo;s version of &ldquo;Harvest Moon&rdquo; echoed off the wooden planks of the Broad Arts Center at UCLA on June 10th as a crowd of optimists, architects, and Ira-Glass lookalikes drank their way in and out of the opening reception for BI(h)OME, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Kevin Daly Architects</a>&rsquo; proposed &ldquo;granny flat&rdquo; solution to the L.A. Housing Crisis. The music was fitting because it was a laid-back cover of a much older tune: instead of raw passion, a more pragmatic vision of affordable housing was being unveiled, a 350-square foot, EFTE-enveloped, recyclable component-laden dwelling with wall cavities for bats, birds, and bugs. The students from <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">cityLAB</a> who manually assembled the mock-up of the BI(h)ome formed a lab-coat wearing cluster of &ldquo;house doctors&rdquo; as they stood behind Dana Cuff, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Frances Anderton</a> of KCRW, and Kevin Daly for a twenty-minute panel-style discussion about the future of housing in Los Angeles.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>Part sales-pitch, part design lecture, the discussion encompassed the difficulties that Lo...</p> Ten Top Images on Archinect's "Biophilia" Pinterest Board Archinect 2015-06-05T15:06:00-04:00 >2015-06-05T15:09:34-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="343" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>In case you haven't checked out <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Archinect's Pinterest</a> boards in a while, we have compiled ten recently pinned images from outstanding projects on various Archinect <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Firm</a> and <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">People </a>profiles.</p><p>(<strong>Tip:</strong> use the handy <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">FOLLOW feature</a> to easily keep up-to-date with all your favorite Archinect profiles!)</p><p>Today's top images (in no particular order) are from the board <em><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Biophilia</a></em>.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&uarr; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Sculptural Rooftop + Garden</a> in Chicago, IL by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">dSpace Studio</a></p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&uarr; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Stadthaus M1 - Green City Hotel</a> in Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Barkow Leibinger</a>; Photo: Zooey Braun</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&uarr; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Pickford Residence</a> in Culver City, CA by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Duvivier Architects</a></p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&uarr; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">In Situ Estate</a> in Redding, CT by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Land Morphology</a></p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&uarr; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Finite-Infinite</a> at the Beijing Garden Expo in Beijing, China by&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Ballistic Architecture Machine</a> with <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Peter Walker Partners</a></p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&uarr; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Gramercy Residence Sky Park</a> in Mandaluyong, the Philippines by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Pomeroy Studio</a></p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&uarr; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">OUTSIDE-IN</a> at the 22nd International Garden Festival in Chaumont-sur-Loire, France by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Meir Lobaton Corona and Ulli Heckmann</a>; Photo: Fabio Ferrario</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>&uarr; ...</p> The real-life architecture of "Ex Machina" Julia Ingalls 2015-05-28T10:29:00-04:00 >2015-06-02T08:26:04-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="768" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>Whether you think Alex Garland's film "Ex Machina" is a mind-bending classic or a future camp hit (the Dancing Scene, anybody?), one thing is certain: the architecture of the real-life Hotel Juvet is stunning. Designed by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Jensen &amp; Skovdin Architects</a>, the hotel is located in northwestern <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Norway</a> near the town of Andalsnes in a place known as Valldal.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>The Hotel Juvet has been designed to feature the splendor of the neighboring mountains and rushing river: each of the distinctive nine rooms features at least two walls made entirely of <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">glass</a> to give the best possible views. Additionally, no one room looks into another, creating a sense of privacy while immersing guests in nature.&nbsp;</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>The officially branded "<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">landscape</a> hotel" was designed and built in two principal stages: seven rooms and a spa building were erected in 2010, while an additional two rooms were added by 2013. The plan, which allows a total of up to 28 rooms to be built, was created with sustainability in mind. Conservation author...</p> How "smart" tintable glass will reduce our needs for air conditioning Alexander Walter 2015-05-22T14:15:00-04:00 >2015-05-22T14:20:12-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="286" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The downside of giant banks of windows or glass walls, though, becomes obvious when the&nbsp;relentless afternoon sun makes the heat and stuffiness inside intolerable [...]. The makers of &ldquo;smart glass&rdquo; say they can address this problem.&nbsp;Smart-glass windows transform from transparent to opaque, and every shade in between, in seconds. They often rely on electrochromic thin films embedded in the glass. The upshot: Less energy is needed to heat or cool a building. Shades and blinds become optional.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Nijmegen's new approach to flood control — and urban design Alexander Walter 2015-05-18T16:35:00-04:00 >2015-05-26T19:13:55-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="286" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The people of Nijmegen aren&rsquo;t taking their good luck for granted. With climate change expected to bring more intense storms like the one in 1995 (and a previous one in 1993), the city is embarking on a massive flood-control project. That may be expected in the Netherlands, a low-lying country where most homes are built behind protective dikes [...]. But even here, the approach underway in Nijmegen is unusual, and filled with ideas that river cities anywhere can learn&nbsp;from.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> The now-open Milan Expo U.S. pavilion salutes to the future of food, the American way Justine Testado 2015-05-06T13:17:00-04:00 >2015-05-06T21:28:15-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="343" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>Since breaking ground last summer, the U.S. Pavilion -- titled &ldquo;American Food 2.0: United to Feed the Planet" -- has opened to the public at the Milan Expo 2015, which is now in its first week. The U.S. joins the more than 140 participating countries that prepared exhibitions and pavilions that respond to the Expo's overall theme of "Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life", which addresses the global issue of food security, access, and the ideal goal to nutritiously feeding more than 9 billion people by 2050.</p><p>Designed by New York-based <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Biber Architects</a>, the pavilion puts on display America's pivotal role in the future of food that emphasizes "openness, transparency and accessibility" in an exhibition <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">designed by Thinc Design</a>. The open barn-inspired structure includes a harvestable hydroponic vertical farm and "uniquely American" (if not consumerist-enticing) features like an expansive boardwalk and a series of food trucks.</p><p>Check out photos of the fully constructed pavilion and more detai...</p> AIA + COTE showcase new set of Top Ten Green Projects for 2015 Justine Testado 2015-04-25T11:36:00-04:00 >2015-04-24T21:18:07-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="772" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>The AIA and its Committee on the Environment (COTE) search the U.S. for sustainably designed projects that convey a thoroughly integrated approach to architecture, natural systems, and technology in the annual Top Ten Green Projects. Now in its 19th year, the program is considered to be the most rigorous program of its kind in sustainable design.</p><p>The jury evaluated the projects according to various criteria including the project's positive contributions to their communities, improving comfort for building occupants, and how design strategies were applied to reduce environmental impact.</p><p>In addition to the Top Ten-winning projects below, the Federal Center South Building 1202 designed by ZGF Architects Top Ten Plus Award. Previous Top Ten winners get a chance to scoop this extra special award, which demonstrates through quantifiable metrics the impact of sustainable design and technology.</p><p>(Cover image)<br><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><strong>University Center &ndash; The New School; New York City<br>Skidmore, Owings &amp; Merrill LLP</strong></a></p><p>&darr; <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><strong>The Bu...</strong></a></p> Book review: Designed for the Future: 80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable Future Nicholas Korody 2015-04-22T18:40:00-04:00 >2015-04-28T21:35:55-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="582" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>I have to admit to a degree of wariness when I first opened <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><em>Designed for the Future: 80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World</em></a>, a new book edited by Jared Green and published by Princeton Architectural Press. The introduction makes some bold claims for a rather slim book with little text. &ldquo;We have the answers. We are both the cause of the problems and the solution to them,&rdquo; Green writes with supreme optimism. The book is a collection of eighty projects that leading architects, urban planners, artists, critics and thinkers chose as a response to the question: &ldquo;What gives you hope for the future?&rdquo; The criteria for their responses stipulated that they must discuss a project they admire, not their own. And the results are as varied as one might imagine for a question that is both vague and expansive.&nbsp;</p><p>More than anything else, the responses highlighted the mutability of the term &ldquo;sustainable&rdquo; within contemporary architecture discourse. &nbsp;Some of the responses, such as that of Katrin Kling...</p> 2015 Holcim Awards grand prizes given to Colombia, Sri Lanka, and U.S.-based projects Justine Testado 2015-04-20T19:46:00-04:00 >2015-04-28T21:24:18-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="381" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>The Holcim Foundation finally announced today the three winning projects for their global 2015 Holcim Awards. Every three years, the awards competition seeks architectural design interventions that address sustainable building and construction issues worldwide. As a global competition, the Holcim Awards highlight people's different lifestyles and draws attention to their specific communal issues.</p><p>At the same time, it promotes the innovative sustainable strategies that architects and designers can create in effort to improve a community's quality of life. The Holcim Awards <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">jury</a> -- chaired by Harvard GSD Dean Mohsen Mostafavi -- chose the three grand-prize winning teams, who each won a trophy and shared the $350,000 prize.&nbsp;</p><p>The $200,000 Gold prize went to<strong> </strong><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">"Articulated Site: Water reservoirs as public park | Medell&iacute;n, Colombia"</a> by Colombian team Mario Camargo, Luis Tomb&eacute;, Colectivo720, with Juan Calle and Horacio Valencia, and EPM Group (Empresas P&uacute;blicas de Medell&iacute;n). Their proposal tra...</p> Tracing how your litter ends up in the ocean Nicholas Korody 2015-04-03T17:55:00-04:00 >2015-04-05T13:25:52-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="324" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Even on a dry day, tens of millions of gallons of dirty water dumps into the ocean through the region&rsquo;s vast storm drain system. The 3,500-mile network was designed and built to empty streets of rainwater, but tons of litter also flow into the ocean through the intricate system of curbside drainages, underground channels, pumps and creeks. Stormwater pollution puts beach swimmers at risk, particularly after it rains. Marine animals and plants can also get sick or die</p></em><br /><br /><p>This is a really fascinating piece that attempts to trace how a cigarette butt flicked into a gutter in Bel Air could make its way across LA and end up in the ocean via Marina del Rey. Visualizations like this feel important because, while we may notice signs on the sides of the sidewalk saying that the gutter leads to the ocean, it's difficult for the individual to comprehend the complex way in which they participate in a problem like marine pollution.</p><p>For a more specifically architectural perspective on this issue, check out <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Architecture of the Anthropocene, Pt. 1</a>.</p> Bali’s fascinating bamboo architecture Alexander Walter 2015-03-23T12:47:00-04:00 >2015-04-04T22:25:45-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="289" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>&ldquo;There was a time when you could not be poor enough, or rural enough, to want to live in a bamboo house,&rdquo; says Ibuku founder Elora Hardy. A former print designer for Donna Karan, Hardy now leads an Indonesian firm that creates innovative, luxurious structures out of cheap, sustainable, plentiful bamboo. In a talk at the TED conference last week, Hardy&nbsp;wowed the audience with spectacular images that defy traditional notions of house shapes and construction.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Learn more about Ibuku on the firm's <a href="" target="_blank">Archinect profile</a>.</p> Thinc Design's USA Pavilion exhibition presents America's role in the future of food for Milan Expo 2015 Justine Testado 2015-02-23T21:02:00-05:00 >2015-02-24T13:48:04-05:00 <img src="" width="514" height="333" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>New York-based <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Thinc Design</a> revealed their exhibition design for the USA Pavilion in the upcoming <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Milan Expo 2015</a> this May. Collaborating with Friends of the USA Pavilion, Thinc Design's exhibition highlights America's role in the future of the global food system, as a response to the Expo's overall theme, "Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life."</p><p>The food-related topic challenges the Expo's 140 participating countries to showcase their technological solutions on how to provide healthy, safe, and sufficient food for all, but through sustainable methods that won't disrupt the Earth's equilibrium.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p><em>Above: Biber Architects' architectural design for the USA Pavilion.</em> <em>&copy; Biber Architects</em></p><p>Thinc Design's exhibition will be located inside a 26,000 sq.ft space of the USA Pavilion, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">designed by Biber Architects</a>. Through a series of immersive presentations and with multilingual college-aged student "ambassadors" as guides, the exhibition will include interactive features and digital media that aim to p...</p> Süha Özkan Looks Globally to Find Architectural Innovation Nicholas Korody 2015-02-20T11:12:00-05:00 >2015-02-26T22:53:57-05:00 <img src="" width="514" height="290" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>What is the architectural legacy of May 1968? The question framed&nbsp;S&uuml;ha &Ouml;zkan&rsquo;s talk last Tuesday at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">SCI-Arc</a>, which he began by invoking his own memories of being a young man in Paris during that year's turbulent month of student-worker protests. &ldquo;Let us be reasonable and ask for the impossible,&rdquo; &Ouml;zkan said, quoting the famous slogan that was &ldquo;uttered in the streets of Paris while stones were thrown.&rdquo;</p><p>For &Ouml;zkan, the demonstrations of &rsquo;68 introduced a new set of values into &ldquo;the architectural agenda.&rdquo; He described the preceding parts of the twentieth century as defined by &ldquo;polarities and oppositions&rdquo;: west vs east; capitalism vs communism; developed vs underdeveloped; blue vs red; north vs south; conservative vs progressive; right vs left. With &rsquo;68, a set of new values were introduced, disrupting this binary structure. According to &Ouml;zkan, these new values included participation, plurality, freedom, non-discrimination and peace. Today, during the beginning decades of the 21st century, &Ouml;...</p> Albert Speer talks about the Qatar World Cup and the search for sustainability Alexander Walter 2015-01-21T18:33:00-05:00 >2015-01-23T13:34:02-05:00 <img src="" width="514" height="343" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Does it make sense for Qatar to host the 2022 World Cup? German architect Albert Speer, whose office is in charge of the project, says yes -- and is doing all he can to ensure sustainability. In a SPIEGEL interview, he says how.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Related:&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Desert sands, soccer, sustainability and "symbolic capital"...</a></p> Not-So-Bright Lights, Big City Alexander Walter 2014-12-11T14:37:00-05:00 >2014-12-18T20:37:28-05:00 <img src="" width="514" height="225" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>You know how you&rsquo;re supposed to turn out the lights when you leave a room to save energy? New York City Council member Donovan Richards wants the owners of many of the city&rsquo;s office buildings to start doing the same&mdash;on a much bigger scale. Richards [...] has introduced a bill that would prohibit owners of approximately 40,000 New York commercial buildings from illuminating the interiors or exteriors of their structures once workers have gone home for the night.</p></em><br /><br /><!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" ""> <html><head><meta></head></html> Finalists and Jury of Global Holcim Awards 2015 entering the homestretch Alexander Walter 2014-12-03T14:03:00-05:00 >2014-12-03T14:16:16-05:00 <img src="" width="514" height="386" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The results of the five regional contests are in for the International Holcim Awards competition, and now all eyes are on the upcoming selection of the three final Global Awards winners. [...] The jury tasked to judge the 15 finalists from the regional contests will be headed by Mohsen Mostafavi, Dean of Harvard University's Graduate School of Design.</p></em><br /><br /><p>These five Regional Gold Award winners automatically qualified for the Global Award competition round:</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p><strong>Holcim Awards Gold - Europe: Anthropic Park</strong>: Freshwater ecological reserve and remediation, Saline Joniche, Italy<br>Main authors: Francisco Leiva, Grupo aranea, Alicante,Spain; Marco Scarpinato, AutonomeForme, Palermo, Italy.<br>Further authors: Marta Garc&iacute;a Chico, Grupo aranea; Lucia Pierro, AutonomeForme</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p><strong>Holcim Awards Gold 2014 - North America: Poreform</strong>: Water absorptive surface and subterranean basin, Las Vegas, NV, USA<br>Main authors: Amy Mielke, Water Pore Partnership, New York, NY, USA; Caitlin Gucker-Kanter Taylor, Water Pore Partnership, Woodbridge, CT, USA<br>Further author: Keller Easterling, Yale School of Architecture, New Haven, CT, USA</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p><strong>Holcim Awards Gold 2014 - Asia Pacific: Protective Wing</strong>: Bird sanctuary, Chiang Mai, Thailand<br>Main authors: Jariyawadee Lekawatana, Architectkidd, Bangkok, Thailand; Singh Intrachooto, Kasetsart University, Bangkok, Thailand; Chak Cherdsatirkul, Kaomai L...</p> Philippe Starck + Riko realizes first prototype of custom eco-prefab house Justine Testado 2014-10-17T09:38:00-04:00 >2014-10-22T21:50:59-04:00 <img src="" width="514" height="343" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>First launched in 2013 after years of technological development and collaboration, French designer <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Philippe Starck</a> and Slovenian wooden prefab building company <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Riko</a> released the second generation of their customizable Prefabricated Accessible Technological Homes (P.A.T.H.) to the global market just this month. The first P.A.T.H prototype was also recently realized in Montfort, France.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>As France works towards its 2020 thermal regulation goal to have all new buildings possess positive energy status, Starck + Riko's prefab homes are packed with high eco-technological systems to allow the homes to produce more energy than they consume. Homeowners have the choice to integrate features like photovoltaic solar panels, wind turbines, rainwater recovery systems, and heat pumps.</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>Perhaps the most interesting, if not highly marketable, feature of these prefab homes is the variety of mix-and-match design options that cater to homeowners' individual needs and aesthetic preferences. For starters, P....</p>