Richard Rogers to lead parliamentary inquiry into how design of the built environment affects behavior

(Courtesy Rogers Stirk Harbor + Partners)

(Courtesy Rogers Stirk Harbor + Partners)

Riding on a wave of psychographic research indicating positive correlations between productivity and the work environment, architect Richard Rogers has launched an ambitious parliamentary inquiry into how design overall affects behavior.

The founder of Rogers Stirk Harbor + Partners kicked off the eight-month Design Commission inquiry this June before the Houses of Parliament in London. The cross-party investigation led by Rogers will explore how design in planning of the built environment creates a tendency towards positive behaviors within local communities. The inquiry was lodged the same week as newly-released research which supports the long-held view that cities which promote physical activity benefit from economic productivity gains.

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Broken umbrellas and bicycle wheels get a second life in these two, completely recyclable pavilions on Governors Island

(Courtesy Izaskun Chinchilla Architects)

(Courtesy Izaskun Chinchilla Architects)

Two whimsical summer pavilions on New York City’s Governors Island have been slated for reuse elsewhere, themselves built from recycled and repurposed materials.

The Billion Oyster Pavilion by BanG Studio and the Organic Growth Pavilion by Izaskun Chinchilla Architects both tied as winners in the annual City of Dreams design competition, and the jury, torn between the two, greenlighted both pavilions, launching a dedicated Kickstarter campaign to crowdfund their construction.

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Product> Windows, Walls, and Doors for Spatial Solutions

National, Product, Spec Sheet
Tuesday, June 30, 2015
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Spec Sheet  
LEAD-Maars-lineaCube-3

(Courtesy Maars Living Walls)

Inside or out, these six systems encourage spatial efficiency in both commercial and residential settings. Innately flexible, their design allows square footage to respond to the changing demands of the user.

More after the jump.

DDG is set to begin construction on this razor-edged, triangular building in Tribeca

100 Franklin Street. (Courtesy DDG Partners)

100 Franklin Street. (Courtesy DDG)

Two very narrow parking lots in Manhattan’s Tribeca neighborhood will soon be filled in with a pair of very narrow condo buildings designed and developed by DDG. The firm’s plan for 100 Franklin Street was approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission in early 2014, but only recently made it through the Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) which had to grant a zoning variance for the site.

More after the jump.

Portland foodies rejoice: Snøhetta is designing the planned James Beard Public Market

The James Beard Public Market by Snøhetta,  with local partners, Mayer/Reed, SERA Architects, Studio Jeffreys and Interface Engineering, hopes to transform Downtown Portland into a culinary hub. (Courtesy Snøhetta)

The James Beard Public Market by Snøhetta, with local partners, Mayer/Reed, SERA Architects, Studio Jeffreys and Interface Engineering, hopes to transform Downtown Portland into a culinary hub. (Courtesy Snøhetta)

It seems that almost every major West Coast city has a public market. Seattle has Pike Place Market (construction is underway on an upcoming expansion now set to open in 2016), San Francisco has the Ferry Building Marketplace, Los Angeles has Grand Central Market, and Vancouver has Granville Island. And San Diego may get a public market in Point Loma this summer.

But the city of Portland—the small but mighty West coast food hub chock full of inventive restaurants, abundant farmers’ markets, and food trucks—has gone without a public market since the Portland Public Market closed in 1942. Until now.

Continue reading after the jump.

Flood prevention scheme in the Netherlands creates unique byproduct: an urban river park island

(Courtesy Room for the River Waal)

(Courtesy Room for the River Waal)

After a close shave with nature 20 years ago, the Netherlands has sought to reinvent defensive flood prevention. “Room for the Waal” is an anti-flood program in Nijmegen, a city which spans the River Waal, Europe’s busiest waterway, where a sharp turn forms a bottleneck as it nears the city.

Continue reading after the jump.

New York City’s first micro-unit housing complex stacks up in just one month

Carmel Place. (Courtesy Field Condition)

Carmel Place. (Courtesy Field Condition)

It took just about one month to fully stack New York City‘s first modular, micro-unit housing complex. The nARCHITECTS-designed building, known as Carmel Place is located on Manhattan’s East Side and offers 55 apartments that range between 260 and 360 square feet. You might remember that the project won Michael Bloomberg‘s adAPT NYC Competition back in 2013.

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New facade peels away from building, and comes with interactive mobile app to boot

(Courtesy Bortolotto architects)

(Courtesy Bortolotto architects)

A digitally readable facade will grace the southeast corner of a building at the Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD U).

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Making it look easy: Snøhetta posts time-lapse video of SF MoMA’s two-year expansion

Architecture, West
Monday, June 29, 2015
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(Courtesy Snøhetta)

(Courtesy Snøhetta)

If constructing a museum were this effortless, there might be one on nearly every street corner. Norway-based firm Snøhetta recently posted a time-lapse video of the ongoing expansion of SF MoMA, compressing a two-year effort into a roughly 7-second breeze-through akin to folding origami: “2 years of construction over in the blink of an eye—time flies when you’re having fun and we can’t wait for Spring 2016!” The caption on the Instagram video reads.

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Getty Foundation Announces its 2015 Keeping it Modern Grant Recipients

Saint John’s Abbey and University Church, Marcel Breuer, 1961, Collegeville, Minnesota. (Courtesy Fr. Geoffrey Fecht, OSB)

Saint John’s Abbey and University Church, Marcel Breuer, 1961, Collegeville, Minnesota. (Courtesy Fr. Geoffrey Fecht, OSB)

Funding shortages, insufficient knowledge of materials and technology, and conflicting interests are often the hurdles that preservationists face in the fight to save 20th century modernist landmarks. In recent years we’ve lost Bertrand Goldberg’s Prentice Women’s Hospital in Chicago and Neutra’s Cyclorama at Gettysburg to demolition, and soon Paul Rudolph’s Government Center in Goshen will likely meet the same sad fate. The Getty Foundation, however, is taking steps to protect other significant buildings of this period through its second annual Keeping it Modern grant initiative, totaling $1.75 million.

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Renzo Piano’s globe gets go-ahead from LA City Council

Architecture, West
Friday, June 26, 2015
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Los Angeles City Council Approves Academy Museum of Motion Pictures Project. (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop/ Studio Pali Fekete architects/A.M.P.A.S.)

Los Angeles City Council Approves Academy Museum of Motion Pictures Project. (Courtesy Renzo Piano Building Workshop/ Studio Pali Fekete architects/A.M.P.A.S.)

And… action. In a unanimous vote the LA City Council approved Renzo Piano’s plans for the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. The design, which includes a renovation of the AC Martin’s May Company Building on Wilshire and Fairfax avenues and the eye-popping addition of a 140-foot-diameter glass and steel globe sited behind the existing 1939 building, comes with at $300 million estimated construction cost and hopes to open in 2017. Read More

Think you can design a high-speed mass transit Hyperloop prototype for Elon Musk?

(Courtesy Hyperloop Transport Technologies)

(Courtesy Hyperloop Transport Technologies)

Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk generated brouhaha in 2013 when he proposed a high-speed mass transit system that could travel at just under the speed of sound.

“It’s a cross between a Concorde, a railgun, and an air hockey table,” Musk wrote in a white paper on the so-called Hyperloop, in which he conjectured a reduced-pressure tube design for transporting humans and freight between San Francisco and Los Angeles in just 35 minutes.

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