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Photos of the Remota Hotel in Patagonia, Torres del Paine, Puerto Natales-Chile by Germán del Sol

This is a special building.  I’ll let the photo’s speak for themselves…

Hotel

Check out the rest of the photos courtesy of the Daily Dose blog.

architect, buildings, construction, Design, Engineering, modern architecture, modern buildings, new buildings | Comments Off on Photos of the Remota Hotel in Patagonia, Torres del Paine, Puerto Natales-Chile by Germán del Sol

NYC Firms and Unions Will Cut Costs To Boost AEC Work

The following deal was announced on May 29th in NYC.  Two months have passed by and there has been no quantifiable increase in announcements of the projects mention herein nor any recently issued Building Permits.  The idea for this deal and subsequent cost cutting agreements are quite an achievement and should begin to payoff for the local economy and AEC professionals.  I will continue to monitor the situation for you.

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Here’s the announcement from New York Construction News:

In an effort to jump start building projects in New York City and put idle union construction workers back on the job, the leaders of more than 40 different building trades and union employer groups announced on May 29 what they termed a “historic compact” to cut wages of both labor and management and end expensive work rules. Proponents claim the citywide project-labor agreement will cut costs by as much as 21% on the first 12 high-rise and other commercial projects that it covers, representing $2 billion of construction and 10,000 jobs. But some are less enthusiastic about the cost savings, some unions are declining to participate and some developers may have to rethink profit margins in a changed city economy.

The agreement was reached between the Building and Construction Trades Council (BCTC) of Greater New York, which represents 100,000 union workers and the Building Trades Employers’ Association (BTEA), which includes 28 contractor groups and 1,700 union firms. The groups have been negotiating since last October, said Louis J. Coletti, BTEA president. “Contractors would have liked more, unions less, but we’re trying to save jobs in New York City,” he says.

Building trades agreed to no strikes or work stoppages on projects included under the pact, as well as standard workdays and other work rule changes and enforcement. Contractors agreed to cut wages and benefits for management employees, reduce profit margins and strive for “improved project management and efficiency,” among other changes.

Several unions, which were not specified, have also agreed to one-year wage freezes and benefit cuts, according to BTEA. The pact is set to generate project cost reductions averaging 16% to 21%, based on a study conducted for BTEA by Hill International Inc., a Marlton, N.J., project and risk management firm. That figure does not include union wage-freeze cost savings, says the group.

“We have two problems in New York: the financial crisis and creeping nonunionism. This will help both,” said John A. Cavanagh, a former building contractor executive and chairman emeritus of the Contractors’ Association of Greater New York, a BTEA member group. He credited BCTC President Gary LaBarbera, a former teamsters’ union official. “Everyone had to do what they didn’t want to do, especially on the union side.”

The pact won praise from New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg (R). “Labor and management are not content merely to wait for a national rebound,” he said on May 29.“Their agreement is an important step to get stalled projects going again.”

But Stephen Spinola, president of the Real Estate Board of New York, said, “It doesn’t go far enough.” He also says savings may be only between 3% and 8%, according to published reports. “We will be talking to our partners to bring costs down further,” he said.

But the pact press release coincided with the May 29 announcement by New York City-based Forest City Ratner Cos. that it plans to resume work on Beekman Tower, a planned 76-story mixed use project halted two months ago at the 37th floor. Reportedly set to be capped at 40 floors, the structure now will be built to its full planned height, says the developer, noting the new labor pact and cost reductions in materials and finishes. Kreisler Borg Florman is project contractor. Others among the first 12 projects that could restart include those being built by Bovis Lend Lease, Turner Construction, Tishman Construction, F.J. Sciame Co. and Plaza Construction. But Coletti acknowledged that not all may restart.

Even so, Coletti thinks the labor agreement is “more the end of the beginning,” noting that trades and employers are still discussing pact details and inclusion of new projects. The AFL-CIO’s Building and Construction Trades Dept. is set to review an additional 12 to 15 projects and the local labor-management committee will review up to nine more in the next week, he said.

One footnote, the city approved the master plan for the Coney Island Revitalization & Development Project yesterday.

architect, architects, architecture, architecture jobs, buildings, construction, Engineering, new buildings, recession, unemployed architects | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on NYC Firms and Unions Will Cut Costs To Boost AEC Work

EDITT Tower – Singapore Goes Eco-Friendly

Every time I see this new genre of eco-friendly-green-buildings (like the EDITT Tower) I am inspired.  These buildings are inviting to look at and like I did as a young boy exploring Navy vesels in New York Harbor with my dad, I want to explore every floor, view and perspective.  Because these buildings have the potential to change the urban living experience for future generations, including rethinking the impact of sustainable design on our personal lives, I am showcasing them here.

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Freshome Blog: What, you though only Dubai and China have the most stunning buildings in the world? Guess again, because EDITT Tower (“Ecological Design In The Tropics”) will be built in Singapore with the financial support of their National University and should be the most eco-friendly in the country. The most interesting thing is that this 26-storey building will use photovotaic panels and will be wrapped in organic local vegetation that will act as a living wall insulator. More to it, the skyscraper was designed to collect rain-water, both for plant irrigation and for its “needs”. If you want to congratulate someone, T.R.Hamzah & Yeang have had their hands on the project.

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Article via Freshome Blog

architects, architecture, buildings, construction, Design, green buildings, Green Built Environment, modern buildings, new buildings | , , | 2 Comments

Dancing Living House, Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan

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Designed as a single-family residence combined with a dance studio, this three-story reinforced concrete building is private and open to the sky, and best of all it has plenty of parking, which comes at a premium in Japan.

Dancing Living House, Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan, by Junichi Sampei, for A.L.X. (Architect Label Xain)
via: What we do is Secret

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Dubai development may be down, but it’s not out

A BREAK IN THE ACTION: Stalled cranes and shells of structures stand in contrast with the exuberant building boom of the last two decades along Sheikh Zayed Road.

A BREAK IN THE ACTION: Stalled cranes and shells of structures stand in contrast with the exuberant building boom of the last two decades along Sheikh Zayed Road.

Many of the city-state’s bigger-than-life projects may be in a holding pattern, but don’t look for its mega-growth world influence to be contained any time soon.

By Christopher Hawthorne, Architecture Critic
June 21, 2009
Reporting from Dubai, United Arab Emirates — If a city can be spectacularly quiet, this waterfront city-state has certainly qualified in recent months. Hundreds of abandoned construction cranes languish above Dubai’s gated communities and beach-side developments and, most dramatically, up and down Sheikh Zayed Road, its high-rise spine. According to a recent estimate in the Middle East Economic Digest, projects worth a staggering $335 billion in the United Arab Emirates — of which Dubai, with a population of about 2 million, is the largest member — are stalled or have been canceled outright.

Dubai’s residents, roughly 85% of them expatriates, have been left to wonder if the current crisis is merely a pause, a recessionary lull that will be painful but temporary, or closer to a fundamental reckoning that will entirely reorder the emirate and how it does business. The same question is being asked in cities around the world, of course. But it’s a particularly acute, even existential one here, since it goes right to the heart of Dubai’s self-image.

Full article via Los Angeles Times 
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Kindergarten Sighartstein – Can You Hear the Grass Growing?

bustler

Kadawittfeldarchitektur just completed their competition-winning kindergarten building in Sighartstein, Austria.

Gerrman architecture firm kadawittfeldarchitektur recently completed their competition-winning kindergarten building in Sighartstein, Austria.

The kindergarten is integrated into the landscape like a chameleon (including a crèche) for 4 groups. Kadawittfeldarchitektur’s proposal for the building won the 1st prize in the public architecture competition in 2003. The project was realized between 2008 and 2009 with a budget of €1.2 million ($1.7 million).

Full article and additional photos via Bustler Blog

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Featured Architecture + Design Blog of the Week

Inhabitat “Design will save the world” Blog

Studio Shift’s honorable mention submission for Taiwan’s Center for Disease Control

Studio Shift’s honorable mention submission for Taiwan’s Center for Disease Control

About

Inhabitat.com is a weblog devoted to the future of design, tracking the innovations in technology, practices and materials that are pushing architecture and home design towards a smarter and more sustainable future.

Inhabitat was started by NYC designer Jill Fehrenbacher as a forum in which to investigate emerging trends in product, interior and architectural design. Mike Chino is the Managing Editor; Emily Pilloton, Olivia Chen, Evelyn Lee, Abigail Doan and Jorge Chapa are Senior Editors. The site was designed by Jill Fehrenbacher and runs off the fabulous blogging platform WordPress.

Mission

GREEN DESIGN IS GOOD DESIGN
GOOD DESIGN IS GREEN DESIGN

Inhabitat.com is a weblog devoted to the future of design, tracking the innovations in technology, practices and materials that are pushing architecture and home design towards a smarter and more sustainable future.

With an interest in design innovations that enhance sustainability, efficiency, and interactivity in the home, Inhabitat’s attention is focused on objects and spaces that are eco-friendly, multi-purpose, modular, and/or interactive. We believe that good design balances substance with style. We are frustrated by the fact that a lot of what we see being touted as “good design” in magazines and at stores is all style and no substance. A lot of contemporary design merely imitates the classic Modernist aesthetic without any of the idealistic social agenda that made Modernism such a groundbreaking movement back in the early 20th Century. The flip side to this is that oftentimes real technological innovations – the ones which will eventually change the way we live our lives – are often not packaged into enough of a stylish aesthetic to move beyond niche circles and crossover into mainstream popular taste.

Likewise, we are frustrated at seeing an emerging category called “Green Design” – as if sustainability is somehow separate from good design in general. We believe that all design should be inherently “Green”. Good design is not about color, style or trends – but instead about thoughtfully considering the user, the experience, the social context and the impact of an object on the surrounding environment. No design can be considered good design unless it at least attempts to address some of these concerns.

We believe in the original modernist ideology that form and function are intertwined in design. Style and substance are not mutually exclusive, and Inhabitat is here to prove it!

ABOUT & MISSION statement via Inhabitat blog

architecture, architecture critic, buildings, construction, Featured Architecture + Design Blog, government architecture, green buildings, Green Built Environment, modern architecture, modern buildings, new buildings, skyscraper | | Comments Off on Featured Architecture + Design Blog of the Week

The ten most creative people in architecture

BY Cliff Kuang
Tue Jun 9, 2009 at 11:00 AM

Which architects have the most unusual, influential visions for the field?
1. Will Alsop, ALSOP Architects

Few architects have been so dedicated to such an unusual design aesthetic as maximalist Will Alsop. And fewer still have been as successful at building their designs. His nearly completed “Chips” building was inspired by piled french fries; his extension for the Ontario College of Art and Design is one of the strangest, most exciting buildings in recent memory:
ALSOP Architects

ALSOP Architects

Architects 2-10 via Fast Company
aia, architects, architecture, architecture critic, buildings, modern architecture, modern buildings, new buildings, skyscraper | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

7 World Trade Center

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by James Carpenter

Seven World Trade Center was the third building to collapse on September 11, 2001, and it is the first to be rebuilt. Designed by David Childs of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), the new building is composed of 42 floors of office space set above eight floors of Con Edison transformers (located in large concrete vaults at street level).

James Carpenter Design Associates (JCDA) was invited to join the design team in late 2002, after the building’s prismatic form — derived from significant site planning — was already established. We were asked to collaborate on the curtain wall, the base of the building containing the transformers, and the lobby.

Concept

The site’s new master plan radically altered the building’s context. Before its destruction, the original 7 World Trade Center was accessible only from the podium of the complex, four stories above street level, where the blank granite box was dominated by Con Edison’s industrial louvers. With the loss of the World Trade Center’s raised podium, by necessity, the new design had to still accommodate the transformers, and also respond to a new public and urban presence at street level.

Complete article and credits via ArchiectureWeek

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Image of the Week: Civil Justice Centre from FOTOFACADE BLOG

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By Andy Marshall

June 3, 2009

I have to admit: I run hot and cold with the Civil Justice Centre in Manchester by Denton Corker Marshall (2007) – but my constant walkabouts around Manchester remind me of its dynamic ability to make its presence felt in the cityscape.  New buildings make fresh vistas.  I will leave you with some words from John Jeffay Picture Editor of the Manchester Evening News on this pic:

“Some sort of mistake? No, the architect did it because he/she could. The result is compelling, in an odd kind of gravity-defying way, although I’m not sure I’d like to work in the overhang bit.  This image, of Manchester’s new Civil Justice Centre, is borrowed from flickr.com.  Architectural photography a curious thing. Does the architect deserve the credit, or the photographer? Dunno.

Anyway, what I like about this picture is the way the photographer has highlighted the absurd sticky-out bit and chosen an angle that gives it a good clear outline. There’s enough of the rest of the building to give it context, but it still works on an abstract level. Perspective is everything”

 

The rest of the article via Manchester News

Andy Marshall is an architectural photographer and commentator – more from FOTOFACADE here

architects, architecture, architecture critic, buildings, modern architecture, modern buildings, new buildings, skyscraper | , , , | Comments Off on Image of the Week: Civil Justice Centre from FOTOFACADE BLOG

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