SHoP-designed Brooklyn tower – now world's tallest modular building – opens its doors
After four years of delayed construction, financial missteps, and lawsuits, Forest City Ratner and Greenland U.S.A. are finally welcoming tenants into 461 Dean Street, currently the tallest high-rise in the world constructed with modular units. The 32-story tower on the edge of Prospect Heights and Park Slope offers sweeping views of brownstone Brooklyn, but its lengthy construction saga highlights the issues developers face when they build with modular construction in New York City.
The groundbreaking (but not trouble-free) development previously in the Archinect news:Work finally resumes at Brooklyn's modular prefab towerContinued Delays For Housing at Atlantic YardsLego High-Rise: World's Tallest Modular Apartment Tower Getting Snapped Together In BrooklynModular... View full entry
Surveying the failure of utopian ideals in Tokyo's Nakagin Capsule Tower
Despite its potential for easy refurbishment and adaptability, the Nakagin Capsule Tower has not exactly fulfilled the hoped-for mission of its designers. A team of documentary filmmakers recently attempted to stay in the tower, only to find the majority of its units without plumbing or much in... View full entry
To solve a housing crisis, invest more in modular construction
Researchers from the University of British Columbia have suggested that modular construction techniques are key to assuaging cities' housing shortages.Associate engineering professor Kasun Hewage at UBC, along with PhD candidate Mohammad Kamali, conducted "the first comprehensive review of... View full entry
Is BrickBox reductive modular design or flex-space genius?
Shelve your "bigger than a breadbox" jokes—literally. The BrickBox, a storage unit made from marine grade birch plywood, can be used a shelf, a room-divider, or even as porous furniture.Each unit has cut-out handles and nylon connectors that can lock into the grooves of other units without the... View full entry
NASA to start testing inflatable "space house" concept
NASA is hoping a new expandable habitat might one day give astronauts a little more alone time. The Bigelow Expandable Activity Module, or BEAM, will be ferried to the ISS later this spring for a series of tests expected to last several years...experiments will help determine the viability of expandable habitats, which weigh less and occupy less space on a rocket, as laboratories and living quarters for future deep-space missions.
More on Archinect:How to turn Martian soil into concreteThe Mars Ice House envisions the day Earthlings can live with ease atop the Martian surfaceNewly patented space elevator could take astronauts 12 miles up into the stratosphere View full entry
BIG is proposing this "pixellated"-module housing project in Toronto
The sentiment is warm and fuzzy. The design, however, is radical: BIG has imagined a complex that would be unlike any other building in the city – or, indeed, North America. The scheme blends an unusual stack-of-blocks form, and adds a complex weave of public and private spaces underneath and within the heart of the building itself...the effect [Bjarke Ingels] is going for is akin to 'a Mediterranean mountain town.'
— The Globe and Mail
More recent BIG projects:BIG to design 2016 Serpentine Pavilion, alongside smaller "Summer Houses" by Kunlé Adeyemi, Barkow Leibinger, Yona Friedman and Asif KahnBIG in Paris: Bjarke Ingels to design for Galeries Lafayette on Champs-ÉlyséesBIG's concept for a spiraling-landscape tower in NYC's... View full entry
FARM-X shares its modular vertical farming approach, pilot project nears completion
The vertical-farming movement continues to grow with the recent unveiling of FARM-X's modular vertical-farming concept, which the Oakland, CA-based organization developed with Zurich-based Conceptual Devices founder Antonio Scarponi and an agronomy team led by University of Bologna Professor... View full entry
Choi + Shine's BIT Light lets you create a multitude of illuminated sculptures
Choi + Shine Architects, who envisioned the beautiful Land of Giants in 2010, developed a new lighting system called the BIT Light™. BIT's name is primarily derived from the Korean word for light (빛) which is somewhat pronounced like "bit" in English. It also stands for Bulb with Integrated... View full entry
The all-glass Photon Space could help us get our daily dose of sunlight, and then some
The Photon Space is becoming known as the first all-glass modular structure of its kind that addresses the health benefits of exposure to natural light and the importance of those benefits in our contemporary lifestyle — where many of us spend it indoors — and its everyday stresses.Recently... View full entry
Continued Delays For Housing at Atlantic Yards
Work remains halted at the site of the modular residential tower next to the Barclays Center arena in Brooklyn. The building is part of the 22-acre, mixed-use development formerly known as Atlantic Yards and now branded Pacific Park. [...]
The dispute ... centers on the design and construction of the pre-fabricated units that make up the modular tower. The 34-story residential high-rise was supposed to be completed in July 2014. So far only 10 of the proposed 34 stories are finished
Minimalist Homes Rise in Tijuana as Violence Subsides
Ask almost any of the local architects in this Mexican border town and they will tell you Tijuana has become a hotbed of building activity.
The growing demand for designer homes, they say, is being driven primarily by Tijuana natives returning to the city...
Most of the developments in Tijuana are for upper-middle-class families ... but the spare designs and basic building materials, especially concrete, used by Mr. Medina and others make it possible for more residents to have designed homes.
Editor's Picks #357
The latest edition of Student Works: highlighted "Eidos" a proposal for a housing complex located in East Harlem, New York, by GSAPP students Carlo Bailey and Lorenzo Villaggi. Plus, Archinect launched a new a new feature series, highlighting some of the more ambitious and intriguing... View full entry
Modular construction is gaining popularity across New York City
“Any change in the way you do business involves some concerns and issues,” said Richard T. Anderson, the president of the New York Building Congress...“If for New York City construction, business as usual is a challenge, you need to change some of the basic ingredients, and labor and management needs to address this.”
In the Real Estate section of last Sunday's NYT, Julie Satow talks with architects, city officials, various trade organizations and developers (although no union representatives) about the recent growth in projects using prefabricated, modular construction techniques. Such an approach offers... View full entry
Arup Proposes Radical Building of the Near Future
The global engineering firm envisions a "smart" building that will plug into "smart" urban infrastructure and cater to an increasingly dense and technology-savvy urban population.
Polish Scientists and Engineers Put A New Spin On Underwater Living
Scientists and engineers from the Faculty of Ocean Engineering and Ship Technology at Gdansk University in Poland have teamed up with other Polish scientific and R&D institutions to come up with a landmark underwater hotel.
The Water Discus Underwater Hotel, as it is called, may not be the first but plans for the Dubai venue call for the biggest site of its kind.
— DesignBuild Source