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SFMOMA chooses architect for $250-million expansion: Norwegian firm Snøhetta

Snøhetta's Norwegian National Opera and Ballet in Oslo

Can an art museum in this economic climate raise $480 million for an ambitious expansion and endowment campaign without a world famous architect like Frank Gehry or Renzo Piano attached to the project?

SFMOMA has just placed a very big bet that it can, by selecting the critically acclaimed but not so commonly known Oslo-based firm Snøhetta — named after a mountain in Norway — as the architect for its large-scale renovation and expansion. The museum’s board of trustees approved the selection on Wednesday; an official announcement is expected Thursday.

The decision was not a complete surprise, as SFMOMA named Snøhetta in a shortlist released in May of four firms officially under consideration, which also included Adjaye Associates, Diller Scofidio + Renfro and, most established of all, Foster + Partners. But, as SFMOMA Director Neal Benezra admits, Snøhetta is “not terribly well known in our country, and especially not in the West.”

Though Snøhetta has other buildings in development in the U.S., including the National September 11th Memorial Museum entry pavilion at the World Trade Center site in New York, SFMOMA promises to be the firm’s first building on the West Coast.

Reached by phone Wednesday evening, Benezra said a visit made by several trustees to Oslo, part of a grand tour this summer to meet the four finalists and see some of their realized buildings, played a decisive role.

He said the museum’s selection committee was bowled over by Snøhetta’s Norwegian National Opera and Ballet in Oslo (pictured above), as was he. “When I saw it for the first time, it reminded me of Bilbao — it has that kind of impact,” Benezra said.

“Not only is it a fantastic concept, but it’s also a model of engagement, with people walking inside and outside and on top of the building. And that is what we need: a building of great imagination and excitement that works on a practical level in a specific urban context.”

He also praised the collaborative nature of the firm, which was founded in 1989…more.

For full article click here.

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Albert Speer and Partner: Qatar Stadiums 2022 FIFA World Cup

With the World Cup underway, I have kept an eye open for future FIFA World Cup stadium designs.  Bingo! Check this out.  Hat tip to designboom.

al wakrah stadium - one of the existing stadiums that will be transformed

Dubai recently unveiled images of stadiums, designed by german architectural firm Albert Speer and Partner, for the bid of Qatar for the World Cup Soccer 2022.  If Qatar wins the bid there will be three completely new stadiums and two existing stadiums that will be subject to extension.

Qatar’s plans to use solar technology to power carbon-neutral technology to cool the stadiums and to make sure the temperature at the games does not rise above 27 degrees celsius.
 
In order to meet demand post-tournament of Qatar Stars League most of the stages was designed with a higher form that can be dismantled after the world cup.
 
The concept of hospitality in Qatar is extremely compact and all stages are an hour’s drive from the FIFA World Cup 2022 headquarters which will allow fans to attend more than one game per day.  A new and efficient metro system, with a total length of 320 km will be built in 2021. all stages will be connected to the highway system in qatar and to provide easy access for spectators, some may also be reached by water taxi. not only the fans will benefit from this ‘compact’, but also teams that could remain in their base camp for the duration of the championship.

al wakrah stadium

The brand new 45,120 capacity al-wakrah stadium will be located in a sports complex that will consist of an aquatic centre, spa, sports facilities and a mall. the centre will be a bustling centre 365 days a year and is adjacent to the future routing of the doha expressway.

Located in the northeast of Qatar, designed in the shape of a beautiful asymmetrical shell the al khor stadium will have a capacity of 45,330 seats. some viewers will see the gulf from their seats as the players will benefit from a flexible cover that will ensure the shadow on the pitch.

outside the al wakrah stadium

Full article and photos click here.

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Send in the Clouds – MIT in bubbly bid for London Olympic Tower

Thanks to writer Julie V. Iovine and the folks at The Architects Newspaper, I came across this project.  It looks fantastic and I would love to see it built.  Although I admit I am not so sure I would ever reach the top to put my head in the “clouds”.  My fear of heights and intended airy and light feel of the structure might stand in my way. This of course assumes I ever travel to London.

A proposal spearheaded by MIT's Senseable City Lab envisions an inhabitable sculpture for London's 2012 Olympics.

All Photos Courtesy Raise the Cloud

In early November, British architects discovered with dismay that Mayor Boris Johnson of London was conducting a secret competition to select a designer for a $33 million beacon for the 2012 Olympics. Brushing aside the standard procurement process—which involves publishing a notice in The Official Journal of the European Communities—Johnson invited 30 firms to submit proposals for a prominent addition to the city’s skyline.

A Guggenheim-like spiral wrapped in cable netting will support the clouds, with much of the structure open to the public.

Called “the Cloud,” the structure starts with a slender spire that is ringed by a spiraling ramp, stabilized with a cable net, and sturdy enough for strollers and bicyclists to mount to a sky full of bubbly spheres. This upper aerie would host three types and sizes of spheres: The largest and most structural are Buckminster Fuller–type geodesic domes; next, cable-net bubbles would cluster around observation decks; and then, blurring the edge, bunches of hot-air-filled balloons create that head-in-the-clouds feeling.

The EFTE inflatables would be covered in a new type of distributed LED that is readable from any direction and could provide a constant stream of information, including game statistics, weather forecasts, traffic advisories, alien greetings, and presumably, advertisements.

Olympic visitors at play in "the Clouds."

Intended to stand 400 feet tall, the Cloud will barely have a footprint, sustainability-wise. Photovoltaic film, whose effect will be magnified by mirrors, is spread over the spheres. And while visitors can only ascend the one-kilometer ramp on foot or by bicycle, they can descend by means of a “regenerative lift” that uses the same braking system as a Prius to recoup electricity, as will water-wheels embedded in the column through rain collection.

The exact size of the Cloud remains to be determined. Taking a page from the grassroots innovations of the Obama campaign, the team has organized a structure that can expand or contract depending on donations. The density of the cloud cover—the number of spires and individual clouds, in fact—will depend on how many people sign on to contribute.

London Mayor Boris Johnson envisions a beacon for the Olympics, and mit's is only one of several proposals thought to be under consideration.

While the contenders—said to include Foreign Office Architecture—have yet to be named, one team is already spreading the word about their entry on Facebook. Carlo Ratti, architect and director of MIT’s SENSEable City Lab, joined forces with German engineer Joerg Schlaich, Arup, artist Tomas Saraceno, corporate sponsor Google UK, and others to create what Ratti described as “not a building for London but a symbol of global ownership.”

The Facebook page Raise the Cloud was launched on November 11 with 1,000 fans and counting, according to Ratti, who would like to see as many as three spires covered in clouds at the as-yet-unselected site. “We can build our Cloud with five million pounds or 50 million,” he said. “The flexibility of the structural system will allow us to tune the size of the Cloud to the level of funding that is reached.” Whether or not selected by Mayor Johnson to be the official 2012 Olympic Tower, the Cloud is certain to attract plenty of air time.

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Island House by IROJE KHM Architects

From the Karmatrendz Blog

Floating site on the river

This site, where is floating on river and confronted the graceful landscape, was strongly recognized to me as a part of nature, from the first time that I met. From then, I started to visualize “the architectural nature” as a place of recreation. Form of site = Form of architecture = Maximum efficiency of landuse. While maximizing the efficiency of landuse, the leaner concrete mass, that cherishes the courtyard where is filled with the water and the greenery, was laid out on this site along the irregular formed site line. This courtyard is “The architectural nature” and a central recreation space as extended river that communicate the river and architecture. Continuous circulation of stepped roof garden – Creation of new green land in this site The whole part of the step typed roofs, where is moving upward with various level, are directly linked to the bed rooms in upper floor. Finally, this stepped roof gardens are linked to both sides of the inner court at where swimming pool is. The inner court where is filled with the water and flower and fruit, and the whole of the roof gardens are circulated as the continuous landscape place and that is the place as “architectural nature” in concept. Sucking in dynamic-surrounding landscape Naturally, all of the rooms inside this site-shaped-mass are laid toward the picturesque landscape to enjoy the graceful scenery surrounded this site. The huge panoramic view framed with sloped ceiling line that is composed with the lines of stepped roof gardens and the bottom line of the inner court, is the major impression of inner space of this house. Promenade inner space of skipfloor made the promenade roofgarden-space of skipfloor. Skip floor plan of inside of this house produced various dramatic spaces. Floating boxes with bamboo garden – Dynamic, unrealistic sequence of interior space. As “The architectural nature”, floating white polyhedral masses that have the built-in bamboo gardens, produced the various stories of vertical space Landscape architecture – Harmonizing with the surrounding landscape The shape of the mountain type composed of irregular polygonal shaped concrete mass and metal mesh was designed to harmonize with the context as “the architectural mountain”. There was the intention to be a part of the surrounding context that consisted of the river and the mountain. Architectural Island – Island House As a result, this house was to be “The island house” as an “architectural island”.

More photos and information from the Karmatrendz Blog

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Danish Architect Bjarke Ingels: 3 warp-speed architecture tales

If you cannot spare 18 minutes now, be sure to come back when you can.  This is a must for architects, designers, green & sustainability enthusiasts and thinkers of all kinds.

From TED.com TEDTalks podcasts

Danish architect Bjarke Ingels rockets through photo/video-mingled stories of his eco-flashy designs. His buildings not only look like nature — they act like nature: blocking the wind, collecting solar energy — and creating stunning views.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4AYE3w5TWHs]

About TEDTalks

TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world’s leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Featured speakers have included Al Gore on climate change, Philippe Starck on design, Jill Bolte Taylor on observing her own stroke, Nicholas Negroponte on One Laptop per Child, Jane Goodall on chimpanzees, Bill Gates on malaria and mosquitoes, Pattie Maes on the “Sixth Sense” wearable tech, and “Lost” producer JJ Abrams on the allure of mystery. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design, and TEDTalks cover these topics as well as science, business, development and the arts.

architect, Design, eco building, Green Architecture, green building, green buildings, Green Built Environment, Landscape Architecture, modern architecture, modern buildings, new buildings | , , | 2 Comments

Pritzker Prize winner reveals Museum of Nature & Science plans for Dallas

From our friends at ArchitectureNews.com

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Thom Mayne has revealed his dramatic design for the new $185 million Perot Museum of Nature and Science at Victory Park in Dallas with groundbreaking due this Autumn. Described as a “living educational tool featuring architecture inspired by nature and science,” the new facility designed by his firm, Morphosis, will provide 180,000 sq ft of display and archive space on a 4.7 acre site just north of downtown Dallas.

“Museums, armatures for collective societal experience and cultural expression, present new ways of interpreting the world,” said Mayne. “They contain knowledge, preserve information and transmit ideas; they stimulate curiousity, raise awareness and create opportunities for exchange. As instruments of education and social change, museums have the potential to shape our understanding of ourselves and the world in which we live.

“The new Perot Museum of Nature & Science in Victory Park will create a distinct identity for the Museum, enhance the institution’s prominence in Dallas and enrich the city’s evolving cultural fabric.”

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At 170 ft and 14 stories high the structure presents itself as a cube structure atop a plinth. Working to a theme of ‘nature in an urban fabric’ its roof alone offers one acre of rolling native landscape featuring all the native flora and fauna of Texas and including a large urban plaza for events. Surrounding the building too landscape design, created in conjunction with Dallas-based Talley Associates, brings together science and technology with nature acting as an extension of the building design. The two are so integrated that, to mention one example, the parking lot is used to generate energy to power water features (post-rain).

80% of the building will be open to the public (an unusually high percentage) and facilities will include 10 exhibition galleries, including a children’s museum and outdoor playspace/courtyard; an expansive glass-enclosed lobby and adjacent outdoor terrace with a downtown view; state of the art exhibition gallery designated to host world-class travelling exhibitions; an education wing; large-format, multi-media digital cinema with seating for 300; flexible-space auditorium; public café; retail store; visible exhibit workshops; and offices.

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A signature design feature within the museum is a 54-foot continuous-flow escalator contained in a 150-foot tube-like structure that dramatically extends outside the building. It will take visitors from the light-filled lobby atrium to the museum’s top floor. Patrons will arrive at a fully glazed balcony high above the city, with a bird’s-eye view of downtown Dallas.

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“We believe the new Museum will provide an unforgettable experience for our visitors and help them better understand and appreciate the world we share,” said Nicole Small, President and CEO at the Museum of Nature & Science, “And our hope is that it will inspire young people – and those of any age – to pursue careers in math, science and technology.”

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The International House on University of Nottingham’s Jubilee Campus

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My immediate reaction to this was WOW because it seems to pop off the page, but upon closer review it initial luster was scummed by it massing.  It sort of resembles a Zamboni and I can’t get that image out of my head.  Not good.

Via DailyDose

The International House on University of Nottingham’s Jubilee Campus by Make Architects, 2008. For the first phase of the campus expansion project, Make realized two other buildings, the Amenities Building and the Sir Colin Campbell Building.

DailyDose Blog

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SkyCottage Residence by archimania located in Memphis, TN

Just when I think I’ve seen the coolest house on the planet something upstages it.  I found this project today designed by archimania on the Karmatrendz Blog.  Here’s a taste.

skycottage_archimania_01

From Karmatrendz Blog

SkyCottage is a progressive home whose design is informed by the view of the Mississippi River, embraces the challenges of a tight site, and enhances the community fabric of one of the earliest examples of New Urbanism.

Concept
This three-story residence occupies a tiny, pie-shaped corner lot with a view of the Mississippi River. The parti demonstrates an interest in abiding by the rules set forth in the neighborhood, yet also bending them as a response to the River. The result is the composition of two architectural volumes. A white-brick cube aligns itself with the established streetscape of rowhouses, and an elevated alloy-coated steel box resists this grid by transversing the cube in both directions, responding directly to the River view.

For much more via Karmatrendz Blog

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House on the Water / formodesign

Catching up a bit on my surfing for great or provocative architecture I came across a house in Arch Daily.  It really feeds the imagination as you explore the spaces and place yourself inside. 

HOW1

HOW2

HOW3

Check out a few photos and click over to the Arch Daily post for much more here.

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