AN’s 2016 Facades+ conference series kicks off in Los Angeles

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Enrique Norten (AN)

Enrique Norten (AN)

“We don’t need walls anymore.  We need living, breathing systems that provide so much more to the urban realm than keeping in conditioned air and keeping out noise and pollutants.” – Will Wright, AIA|LA

Los Angeles’ 2016 Facades+ Conference, presented by The Architect’s Newspaper, is the 18th event in an ongoing series of conferences and forums that have unfolded in cities across the nation, including New York City, Miami, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Seattle, D.C., and Chicago. Held at the L.A. Hotel Downtown, the conference incorporated architects, engineers, fabricators, and innovative material manufacturers into a multidisciplinary two-day event covering the state of building envelope design thinking today.
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DDG reinterprets cast iron facades of Soho

Architecture, East, Envelope
Friday, January 29, 2016
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courtesy DDG Partners

courtesy DDG Partners

“We’re always interested in the intersection between old-fashioned hand craft, and modern machined factory production.”

Located in the Soho Cast Iron Historic district, XOCO325 (pronounced sho/co) is a 9-story, 24-unit condo development. Named after the Catalan word for chocolate, the project involves the renovation of a former Tootsie chocolate factory, and a new structure cloaked in a custom cast aluminum screen. The condos range in size from just over 1,000 sq. ft. to nearly 5,000 sq. ft. and are connected by a central courtyard.
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Tessellated BIM cloud wraps new engineering school

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Photograph courtesy of Flynn

Photograph courtesy of Flynn

An undulating aluminum panels rainscreen features around 9000 individual triangular panels, with 1000 high performance glass units.

York University is a research-oriented public university in Toronto known for its arts, humanities & business programs. Nestled into the landscape on the edge of campus and overlooking a pond and arboretum, the Bergeron Center for Engineering Excellence is a 169,000 sq. ft., five-story LEED Gold facility housing classrooms, laboratory spaces, offices, and flexible informal learning and social spaces. Designed with the idea of a scaleless, dynamically changing cloud in mind, ZAS Architects + Interiors designed an ovoid-shaped building wrapped in a custom triangulated aluminum composite panel (ACP) cladding with structural silicone glazed (SSG) type windows. Costas Catsaros, Associate at ZAS, says the building will help to establish the emerging school by establishing a dynamic, ever-changing identity.
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Synthesis Design + Architecture’s sophisticated addition to one of the world’s largest malls

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Facade at dusk, by Polar Factory, courtesy Synthesis Design + Architecture

Facade at dusk, by Polar Factory, courtesy Synthesis Design + Architecture

The facade and roof serve as a the graphic identity for the 20,000 sq. ft. building while acting as a veil which reveals and conceals views.

The Groove provides an extension to CentralWorld, the third largest mall in the world. At 6,000,000 sq. ft., the mall is comprised of three towers: an office tower, a lifestyle tower (including a gym, dentist and doctors offices, schools, etc.), and a hotel tower. The main shopping center includes four department stores and a convention center. Sited at an existing entry plaza to the office tower, which feeds an underground parking garage, the project came to Synthesis’ office with several structural design constraints. The weight of the addition was limited, causing the design team to incorporate a specific steel frame with a grid coordinated to the bay spacing of the parking garage immediately below grade. Alvin Huang, Founder and Design Principal of Synthesis Design, says this helped save time at the start of the design process. At 20,000 sq. ft., the project, jokes Huang, is “the punctuation on the paragraph.”
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Colorful “little mountains” highlight Eastern Europe’s first children’s museum and science center

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by Roland Halbe, courtesy LHSA+DP

by Roland Halbe, courtesy LHSA+DP

The 35,000 sq. ft. building celebrates three artisanal crafts significant in Bulgaria: textiles, wood carving, and glazed ceramics.

Lee H. Skolnick Architecture and Design Partnership has designed a new children’s museum called “Muzeiko” in Bulgaria’s capital city of Sofia to balance complex form, regional relevance, and whimsical fun. Their client, the America for Bulgaria Foundation, wanted international expertise paired with state of the art materials. The architects responded to the geography of the Sofia Valley, a region surrounded by mountain ranges, with abstracted forms referring to the nearby Balkan mountains, triangulated in a “scientific” manner.
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Thomas Phifer and Partners’ elegantly functional box saturated in daylight

Architecture, Envelope, West
Friday, December 18, 2015
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© Scott Frances

(Courtesy Scott Frances)

The 10-story courthouse includes ten courtrooms for the District Court of Utah, fourteen judges’ chamber suites,  administrative Clerk of the Court offices, the United States Marshal Service, United States Probation, and other federal agencies.

Thomas Phifer and Partners recently completed a United States Courthouse in Salt Lake City for the General Services Administration (GSA). The 400,000 sq. ft. project consists of a blast resistant shell clad with a custom designed anodized aluminum sun screen. The screen is arranged in four configurations dependent on solar orientation, performing as a direct heat gain blocker on the south facades, while subtly changing to a louvered fin configuration on the east and west facades.
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Koning Eizenberg blends old and new

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(Eric Staudenmaier)

(Eric Staudenmaier)

In 2006, the 28th St. YMCA was added to the City of Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monuments List, and in 2009 it was added to the National Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places.

In 1926, just three years after becoming the first African-American member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), Paul R. Williams designed a landmark YMCA building on 28th Street in Los Angeles. Nearly ninety years later, the building has been restored, and transformed, into a modern multi-family housing complex. Koning Eizenberg Architects (KEA) worked on the project for Jim Bonner, FAIA, architect and executive director of the nonprofit affordable housing organization Clifford Beers Housing. The architects restored the historic 52-unit building, reorganizing the layout into 24 studio apartments, and constructed a new 5-story, 25 studio apartment building next door.  The project features a perforated metal screen scrim wall, an integrated photovoltaic panel wall, restored historic stone work. and a shared roof deck that programmatically connects the historic building with it’s modern neighbor.
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NBBJ’s “generative” courtyard office headquarters for Samsung

Architecture, Envelope, West
Friday, December 4, 2015
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(NBBJ Architects)

(NBBJ Architects)

The two 10-story towers are clad in white metal and clear glass, carefully balanced to reduce solar heat gain and provide a sense of lightness.

Samsung’s new North American headquarters, designed by NBBJ, is a landmark facility in Silicon Valley embracing new urban guidelines developed by San Jose officials to prioritize active streets and environmental sensitivity. The project creates a sense of lightness with a transparent, environmentally responsible facade, and has been used as a case study project within NBBJ’s international network of offices.
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Small town receives new high-tech science facility dressed in a dynamic crystalline metal mesh veil

Architecture, East, Envelope
Friday, November 20, 2015
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High precision assembly of rigid metal mesh panels suspended in tension off a steel frame structure (courtesy Cambridge Architectural)

High precision assembly of rigid metal mesh panels suspended in tension off a steel frame structure (courtesy Cambridge Architectural)

A total of 149 custom panels cover nearly 11,000 sq. ft. of the facade, providing a passive approach to daylighting, glare reduction, shading, and solar heat gain reduction.

The Georgia BioScience Training Center is a signature building with a dual purpose: a high-tech facility supporting research critical to bio-manufacturing that brings identity to Georgia’s growing biosciences industry. The 40,305 sq. ft. building is sited approximately 45 miles due east of Atlanta in Social Circle, “Georgia’s Greatest Little Town,” and houses laboratories, classrooms, meeting rooms, and large gathering spaces. The building is organized around a large elliptical courtyard lined with glass walls. “Building planning centered on the idea of a “10 minute marketing tour” as the state will tour thousands of future ‘prospect’ companies through the facility,” says Nathan Williamson, Associate Principal at Cooper Carry.
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RPBW’s active double skin facade kick starts a “new generation” of campus design at Columbia University

Architecture, East, Envelope
Friday, November 13, 2015
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Air in the cavity cycles at a rate of 6 air changes per minute, managing heat gain and condensation build up in the cavity. (© RPBW)

Air in the cavity cycles at a rate of 6 air changes per minute, managing heat gain and condensation build up in the cavity. (© RPBW)

Columbia University’s expansion has been selected by LEED for their Neighborhood Design pilot program, which calls for the integration of smart growth principles and urbanism at a neighborhood scale.

Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW) is designing four buildings to be built over the upcoming years as a first phase of Columbia University’s Manhattanville campus expansion. The first of these four projects to break ground is the Jerome L. Greene Science Center, a research facility used by scientists working on mind, brain, and behavior research. The facility is ten stories wrapped in nearly 176,000 square feet of building envelope, consisting of transparent floor-to-ceiling glazing.
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Tree-like diagrid columns connect two greenspaces in Manhattan’s Upper West Side

Architecture, East, Envelope
Friday, November 6, 2015
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Setbacks on the upper levels allow the exterior columns to slope at an angle following the “sky exposure plane” of New York City's zoning code (courtesy Handel Architects)

Setbacks on the upper levels allow the exterior columns to slope at an angle following the “sky exposure plane” of New York City’s zoning code (courtesy Handel Architects)

Unbroken bands of window walls sit beyond an exterior concrete structural frame.

Completed earlier this year, a new market rate rental building on Manhattan’s Upper West Side by Handel Architects features a striking exposed cast-in-place concrete diagrid “exoskeleton” structure. The system is designed in response to required zoning code setbacks that restrict building area to a mere 35’ wide at times. The project, named after it’s address at 170 Amsterdam, is located two blocks north of Lincoln Center, situated between two greenspaces – Central Park and the Lincoln Tower superblock – via 68th Street. The lobby is a prominent glassy space containing a mix of community programs, formally and programmatically connecting the two sides of the building together, while abstracted tree-like columns punctuate the building envelope.
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KieranTimberlake demonstrates best practices for a prototypical new commercial building

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Building 7R's brick screen and translucent glazing panels (image courtesy Michael Moran/OTTO)

Building 7R’s brick screen and translucent glazing panels (image courtesy Michael Moran/OTTO)

The facility will serve students, building operators, building energy auditors, and will be used to support the development of new business ventures in energy efficiency.

The Consortium for Building Energy Innovation (CBEI)—formerly the Energy Efficient Buildings Hub—at Philadelphia’s Navy Yard, is a research initiative funded by the Department of Energy and led by Penn State University that seeks to reduce the energy usage of commercial buildings to 50% by 2020. KieranTimberlake, a Philadelphia-based firm located three miles from Navy Yard, was selected by Penn State to renovate a 1940’s Georgian-style brick building to be a living laboratory for advanced energy retrofit technology. Included in the brief was an addition to the building, which evolved into a new stand-alone building across the street on Lot 7R, which aptly became the name of the building.
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