Take a tour inside the under-construction Empire Stores in Dumbo, Brooklyn

The Empire Stores' facade. (Henry Melcher / AN)

The Empire Stores’ facade. (Henry Melcher / AN)

Over the weekend,  AN joined an Open House New York on a tour of the under-construction Empire Stores warehouse in Dumbo, Brooklyn. The old coffee bean warehouse was built in the 1870s, but has been sitting empty along the East River for decades. By next fall, though, the Empire Stores will have been transformed with all the Brooklyn-type fixings you’d expect. Yes, there is an artisanal Brooklyn market featuring local purveyors. And office space for tech and creative companies. And cafes, restaurants, and beer gardens. Included in the mix is also a rooftop public park and a museum focused on New York City‘s waterfront.

Continue reading after the jump.

Rios Clementi Hale’s IAC lattice tilts the traditional green roof on its side in West Hollywood

Rios Clementi Hale's Green Grid for IAC (RCH)

Rios Clementi Hale’s Green Grid for IAC (RCH)

What’s a cross between a green roof and a living wall? IAC, the company that brought you Frank Gehry’s billowing building by the High Line in New York, is commissioning Rios Clementi Hale to “drape” its white brick building on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood with a six-story sculptural steel lattice—like a living roof turned 45 degrees— containing native plantings irrigated by recaptured underground water.

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Tour 150 of Chicago’s architectural gems this weekend for free at Open House Chicago

The 190 South LaSalle building was designed by Philip Johnson and John Burgee in 1968 as an homage to Burnham & Root’s demolished 1892 Masonic Temple Building. (Eric Allix Rogers)

The 190 South LaSalle building was designed by Philip Johnson and John Burgee in 1968 as an homage to Burnham & Root’s demolished 1892 Masonic Temple Building. (Eric Allix Rogers)

Open House Chicago is this weekend, October 18 and 19, when 150 of the city’s architectural gems—both new and old, well-known and obscure, public year-round and off-limits but for now—open their doors to enthusiasts of the built environment, free of charge. Read More

Shanghai talks: How to avoid homogenous skylines

Shanghai sunrise, before the construction of the Shanghai Tower. (Jose Maria Cuellar via flickr)

Shanghai sunrise, before the construction of the Shanghai Tower. (Jose Maria Cuellar via flickr)

In September, The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat invited me to serve as the special media correspondent for their Shanghai symposium, entitled “Future Cities: Towards Sustainable Vertical Urbanism.”

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Archtober Building of the Day #15> Red Bull Studios

Architecture, East, Interiors
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
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(Berit Hoff)

Archtober Building of the Day #15
Red Bull Studios
220 West 18th Street
SLAB Architecture/INABA

Jeffrey Inaba didn’t have wings, but guided a big group of Archtober enthusiasts and pick up party goers on a tour of Red Bull Studios in Chelsea. Introduced by Lance Jay Brown, 2014 AIANY President, the former Angelino, via OMA, presented a slick 38,000 square foot music studio/gallery/corporate office that spans all trends. With a psychedelic installation curated by Phong Bui and Rail Curatorial Projects, the public spaces, cleverly planned with acoustics and crowd control in mind, sang out with raucous voices of overstimulation—not INABA’s work.  The planning, though, underlying the funk and festivity was rock solid, creating a diversity of public space, engaging from the street, clear divisions of public and private, and fantastic core toilets.

Continue reading after the jump.

Long-vacant grain silos in Chicago up for auction, future uncertain

One of Chicago‘s most visible rust-belt remnants is up for sale, just in time for its cameo in the Transformers 4 movie. The derelict Santa Fe grain elevator has been a favorite hangout for squatters, graffiti artists and ruin-porn enthusiasts since 1977, when a fire and explosion ended 70 years of industrial history there.

Continue reading after the jump.

Philip Johnson’s Farney House in Sagaponack, New York has been demolished

Architecture, East, Newsletter, Preservation
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
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The Farney House. (© Ezra Stoller/Esto)

The Farney House. (Ezra Stoller/Esto)

The village of Sagaponack, New York has confirmed to AN that Philip Johnson’s Farney House has been demolished. A Robert A.M. Stern–designed home is expected to rise in its place. Johnson completed the home in 1946, just three years before his world-famous Glass House in New Canaan. The now-disappeared Hamptons home is believed to have inspired that later work.

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Rem Koolhaas’ Biennale: Or how the Tempest Swept Venice

Architecture, International, Review
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
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peter-lang-biennale-02

[Editor's Note: The Venice Architecture Biennale is still on through November 23 and it's still proving to be controversial. Professor Peter Lang shares his thoughts on Rem Koolhaas' event here.]

A Tale about the Magician Koolhaas who plays Prospero, lives on an island in the Venetian Laguna, and brings a Tempest to the Venice Biennale.

Miranda:
O wonder!
How many goodly creatures are there here!
How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world,
That has such people in’t.
—William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act V, Scene I, ll. 203–206[5]
(Aldous Huxley quoted this line from the Tempest for the title of his dystopian novel Brave New World published in 1931)

In choosing to take a different perspective on the 14th edition of the Architecture Biennale in Venice directed by Rem Koolhaas, I decided to skip the standard blow-by-blow critique, and instead confront what I believe is the greatest enigma behind this controversial event. Up till now, the majority of critics taking a look at this year’s exhibition find fault with Koolhaas’ method, not so much with his madness. But the key to the exhibition is not in its studied aloofness, but in its insubordination—Koolhaas is determined to shake up the Biennale institution by any means possible.

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New York New Practices 2014 winner, NAMELESS Architecture, presents its work tomorrow night

Architecture, Awards, East
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
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Examples of NAMELESS Architecture's work. (Courtesy AIA)

Examples of NAMELESS Architecture’s work. (Courtesy AIA)

In 2006, the New York chapter of the AIA created the New Practices competition to showcase emerging architecture and design firms that could very well be the Next Big Thing in New York City. Among this year’s winners are Unchung Na, Sorae Yoo, and Kiseok Oh of NAMELESS Architecture and they’re presenting their winning work, (im)possible architecture, tomorrow night at the Hafele Showroom in Manhattan.

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Archtober Building of the Day #14> Wieden & Kennedy offices by WORKac

Architecture, East, Interiors
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
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(James Fallarino)

(James Fallarino)

Archtober Building of the Day #14
Wieden & Kennedy
150 Varick Street, 6th Floor
WORKac

Sam Dufaux, associate principal of WORKac, led a full boatload of Archtober enthusiasts through the New York offices of renowned Portland, Oregon–based ad agency Wieden + Kennedy.

Continue reading after the jump.

Cambridge Architectural’s Steel-Wrapped Embassy

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Cambridge Architectural's wire mesh facade screens the new glass atrium at the South African Embassy in Washington, DC. (Eric Taylor)

Cambridge Architectural’s wire mesh facade screens the new glass atrium at the South African Embassy in Washington, DC. (Eric Taylor)

Metal mesh bridges old and new in Davis Brody Bond renovation.

For their renovation and expansion of the South African Embassy in Washington, DC, Davis Brody Bond faced an unusual aesthetic challenge. Besides updating the two historic buildings housing the embassy’s offices and residence, they were tasked with building a new atrium for public welcoming, public events, and conference rooms—right in between the two older buildings. The architects turned to Cambridge Architectural, a Maryland manufacturer of wire mesh architectural systems. “Davis Brody Bond wanted to have this new building as a very contemporary element between the two limestone buildings,” said Cambridge Architectural’s Ann Smith. A wire mesh facade seemed a perfect solution to the problem of combining old and new, seamlessly bridging the two masonry structures, and providing crucial sun shading for the glass atrium.

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Archtober Building of the Day #13> The Museum at Eldridge Street

Architecture, East
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
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(Benjamin Kracauer)

Archtober Building of the Day #13
The Museum at Eldridge Street
12 Eldridge Street
Archimuse

The Columbus Day holiday and parade did not deter the Archtober faithful from attending a very special family event at the Museum at Eldridge Street. Archtober first visited the 1887 Eldridge Street Synagogue on on October 28, 2012 in the shadow of the looming Superstorm Sandy, to enjoy the fruits of a 20-year restoration project that culminated in the 2010 installation of the Kiki Smith rose window. Now, adding to the manifold riches to be found within is a fully realized Museum at Eldridge Street, the result of a collaboration of curators, historians, architects Archimuse, and graphic designers.

Continue reading after the jump.

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