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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Santuary Housing Association key workers accommodation, Cambridge, United Kingdom

McBains Cooper gets planning permission for £20m green scheme
Leading inter-disciplinary property and construction consultancy McBains Cooper has gained planning permission for a £20m project for Sanctuary Housing Association to provide key worker accommodation for doctors and nurses at Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge.

The site is currently occupied by a car park but the scheme will bring 100 apartments and 372 bed spaces to the site. Green features include a heating system using air-based heat exchange, Photovoltaic cells and green and brown roofs. The south-facing aspect of the buildings will feature solarshading.

The development comprises four individual six-storey, brick-clad buildings, featuring timber-clad pods and zinc-clad ground floor. The top three floors of the buildings will be built with a step effect, each floor featuring a green roof.

‘We wanted to use a mixture of softer, more ‘domestic’ materials to reflect the buildings use whilst responding to the contemporary look and feel of the main building,’ said Zaki Ghiacy, Director at McBains Cooper.
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The Ring, Maribor, Slovenia

OFIS & Multiplan architects complete ‘The Ring', their football stadium project in Maribor, Slovenia
The plot that was used as a multi-functional sports field is located in the centre of the city of Slovenia’s largest city, Maribor.

The brief was to convert the field into a football stadium and extend the existing building with covered tribunes (12.500 spectators, VIP and press facilities) and additional public facilities including four large gymnasiums, fitness-club with swimming pools, shops and restaurants.

The project proposed a ring of tribunes weaving above enclosed base with public spaces. The lowest and the highest point of the tribunes are defined by the quality of the view of the spectator. In the corners of the field, where the views are restricted, the entrances to the tribunes are displaced. The ring is pulled down here to the level of the entry plateau. Then it rises gently and it reaches the highest points in the middle of the field. There the maximum number of the seats is provided, offering the best views to the field.

The corridor of the ring has double skin and will provide rooms for VIPs. In the base, sport halls and shops are displaced. The roof of the base forms an entry plateau to the tribunes and also offers views to the smaller sport field at the side of the stadium. The stadium is set to open later this year

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National Library of New Zealand, Wellington, New Zealand

A project of national and international importance, a portal to the memory of New Zealand.
The redevelopment of the National Library will provide a unique opportunity to transform a major national institution into a centre for research, connection and creation. Symbolically the redevelopment is charged with the responsibility to represent both the historical reality of New Zealand as well as its changing place in the world. The energetic, sculptural screen which dominates the entry façade is an abstract sculpture – a carving echoing the artistic traditions of Maori and the confidence of a country which is increasingly recognised for its ability in high technology industries. The project incorporates the entire original structure of the existing building which was completed in 1986. These ‘bones’ are retained as a vital template for the new design and will continue to provide a stable structural and environmental ‘core’ for the new and transparent perimeter. The final built result will also reflect the New Zealand government’s stance on sustainable building design and incorporates the building’s content itself into active ESD strategies

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City Quay, Waterford, Ireland

Iconic Waterford Site will benefit from the revamp
London based m3 architects, working in partnership with CDA Architects of Cork, submitted designs for detailed planning approval for the re-development of the 22 acre Ard Ri site in Waterford city, Ireland. m3 architects concepts were founded upon an earlier masterplanning exercise undertaken by Urban Initiatives, also based in London.

Renamed ‘City Quay’, the scheme is proposed for the most prominent location in Waterford City, having been described as the best site in Ireland, overlooking the former port, straddling the border of Waterford and Kilkenny counties.

The site will feature a new high quality hotel with leisure and conference facilities and upwards of 400,000 sq ft of retail and commercial space. Nearly 600 residences of varying types are proposed along with a cultural space featuring a roof top promontory.

m3 architects partner Ken Hutt outlined the practice’s design approach in creating what is in effect a new urban district within the city boundaries: “m3 architects’ concepts, which reflect the richness and diversity of the existing city centre and streetscape, will create a dynamic and vibrant community on the City Quay site. Unique, dramatic and individualistic buildings will accommodate a mix of commercial, social, cultural and residential buildings, combining to create a robust and sustainable developement that will act as a catalyst for the continued and measured growth of the city for many decades to come.”

Speaking at the launch of the project, City Quay developer Tom Coughlan of TRM developments said that Waterford offers the best potential in Ireland at the moment: “As Ireland enters more challenging economic times, specifically in the construction industry, only projects with excellent potential will succeed. With the support we have received from the City of Waterford for this project, as well as the strength of the local Waterford economy, we are confident that City Quay will help Waterford continue its development as one of Ireland’s leading regional cities.”

The philosophy of the City Quay development is to create a truly sustainable development which is socially just, environmentally responsible and economically viable. This development has been designed to create a good life for those who live there without compromising the ability of future generations to do the same. There will be a conscious drive to enable local businesses and entrepreneurs to establish themselves in the development, helping the growth of indigenous business and making City Quay an integral part of Waterford.

Tom Coughlan pledged that the new 208 bed hotel will be completed by the start of the Tall Ships Race in Waterford in 2011 provided construction gets underway by the start of 2009
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Straume mixed-use development, Straume, Norway

schmidt hammer lassen architects win masterplan competition for Bergen mixed-use development
Straume Sjøfront, near Bergen in Norway, is a dense, contemporary urban development spread across three new islands and comprising residential, business, and hotel facilities in addition to a harbour where visitors can moor their boats.

The new development is situated at the foot of Straume's steep cliffs, placing it right out in Straume Sound and marking a clear boundary between the mountains and the water.

The Norwegian jury were impressed by the way in which the practice’s design for Straume Sjøfront responds so imaginatively to its location creating a distinctive new community between water and mountainside

The proposal include plans for an intimate canalside milieu situated in the area between the cliffs and the main development. Water is a key theme in the development: the three individual islands are separated by canals which give each of them an individual character.

The unusual location and the masterplan combine to create a rare development in which a dense urban setting sits directly alongside a sweeping natural environment. The plans include a mixture of residential properties of various designs and scales, fostering a diverse architectural and social environment.

schmidt hammer lassen architects share first prize in the competition with the Norwegian architectural practice HLM architects.
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Croydon Gateway, Croydon, London, United Kingdom

Vibrant development in 'London's third city' regeneration gets go-ahead
Berkeley Homes’ £140million residential development, designed by Rolfe Judd architects and an important component in the regeneration of Croydon, London, has received planning permission. The scheme will provide 739 apartments in a 44 storey residential tower and courtyard development, many of them affordable, and a new public square.

Croydon is London's largest Borough by population and is situated to the south of the city. While it is already a successful centre for business and arts the area is undergoing a regeneration, Croydon Vison 2020, which hopes to see the area become 'London's third city'. £2billion is to be invested in the area over the next ten years.

The Romans introduced the crocus to Britain, and the name of Croydon may have been derived from the Latin for crocus and valley. The tower’s vibrant pixelated colour scheme reflects the hues of the purple-petal saffron crocus with its vivid orange stigmas. The historic references are appropriate for a tower that sits centrally at the gateway to the town, the modulating colour suggestive of this element of Croydon’s long history.

As such, the outer surface is designed to assume quite an uncompromising idiom folding and wrapping to form the inner enclosure which, by contrast, is moulded in a soft, curvilinear way.

The design dictates a dialogue between two realms, outer and inner, and creates a dramatic backdrop for the resulting landscaped courtyard.
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Strange but true, New York, United States

Why is this 60ft skyscraper so impressive?
Ordinarily a 60ft skyscraper wouldn’t encourage many wows in the world of architecture but in Manhattan there currently stands just such a structure which has suitably awed the profession. Why? - Because it is made from Meccano.

The structure, designed by artist Chris Burden and sponsored by the Public Art Foundation, will pay homage to the historic skyscrapers that populate New York and give the city its iconic architectural presence. Standing in front of the Rockerfeller Centre in New York it is considered by the artist to be a ‘poetic interpretation’ of the 30 Rock building at the Centre. Painstakingly constructed by a team of thirty using just a few screwdrivers, presumably more than a few screws and over a million stainless steel Erector set pieces, the installation takes pride of place in its surroundings. The heavy-weight toy (16,000 pounds) is thought-provokingly entitled ‘What My Dad Gave Me’ and will continue to amuse and bemuse passers-by until the 19th July.

Burden told the Public Art Fund: "I have always wanted to build a model skyscraper using Erector parts. The model skyscraper, built from a toy and 65 feet in height, takes on the dimensions of a full sized building. The circle of actual buildings inspiring a toy in 1909, which is then used to build a model skyscraper the size of an actual building in 2008, is a beautiful metamorphosis."

Niki May Young
News Editor
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Art Plaza - The New Estonian Academy of Arts

SEA and EFFEKT architect firms win first prize for Academy of Arts building in Estonia
Art Plaza, by the two young Danish architect firms SEA and EFFEKT, has been awarded 1st prize in the international competition for the new Academy of Arts building in Tallinn, Estonia.

The new academy building is situated in the heart of Tallinn. The building contains facilities for the departments of art, architecture, design, and art history. In addition to the academic programme the project includes a library, gallery, shop, conference facilities and a public plaza. The competition had 96 entries from 26 countries.

The jury said:

"The Jury voted Art Plaza as the winner of the competition because it is by far the best proposal when it comes to architectural concept, outer qualities and inner life. The project is stunningly simple and at the same time fascinatingly complex.

"The outer shape is a beautifully proportioned square tower. Tallinn’s downtown is dominated by visually “noisy” buildings screaming to each other. In this chaos Art Plaza suggests erecting a quiet, calm and perfect tower with only half the footprint of the site, liberating a 4000m2 plaza in the heart of Tallinn. This plaza will stand out as a unique place in downtown Tallinn, filled with students and art. Art plaza will become the new living room of Tallinn.

"The heart of the building is a spiral void. The corkscrew movement connects the entire building and creates 4 public plazas with stunning views of the entire city. The sky plazas open up the building from within, creating an art academy in constant dialog with the city - a modern open academy, which interacts with society and the world.

"The project has potential of becoming an international masterpiece, the beckon of Estonia, attracting people from all over the world to see the art academy of the future – a calm sculpture in the roar of downtown Tallinn."

Art_Plaza is an equal cooperation between the two Danish architecture firms SEA and EFFEKT
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Kuwait Business Town Towers, Kuwait, Kuwait

Planning is confirmed for Business Town Towers following lengthy delays
Construction at Kuwait Business Town Towers, designed by KEO International Consultants, is storming ahead following severe planning delays. The pair of towers is now set to become one of the most recognizable landmarks on the Kuwait Skyline by 2010, two years after it was initially scheduled for completion.

Excavation works had begun in 2006 but work was halted in 2007. A spokesperson for KEO said the delay had been due to a ‘permitting issue as there were a few items that needed moving on the site’ but they are now very relieved that the build is continuing as expected. The contractors are currently conducting piling works at the site.

Standing at 40 storeys (184 m) and 36 storeys (168 m) the towers will make up one of three areas in the Kuwait Business Town Development which will provide office, hotel and retail space. KEO have provided the Architectural Design, Landscape Design, Interior Design and Structural and MEP Engineering for the 40,000 sq m of office space commissioned by Kuwait Business Town Real Estate Company.

The towers are engineered to dynamically interact with each other as they move upward into the sky. Raj Patel, KEO’s Principal Designer for the project, said: “The dueling interplay of these two tower forms is unique and unmatched in Kuwait.” Each floor twists inward from the floor below as it moves up to create an ever changing façade. The curtain wall design combines the use of four elements - silver reflective glass, stainless steel panels, grey acrylic panels, and aluminum horizontal fins. The sun reflecting on these materials will create an ever-changing appearance of the façade during the day.

Niki May Young
News Editor
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Lithuanian Government approves Hadid-designed Hermitage-Guggenheim Museum project in Vilnius
Just two months after the Hermitage and Guggenheim Museum’s announced that Zaha Hadid had won an international competition to develop a design for a new museum in Vilnius, Lithuania, the Lithuanian government announced Wednesday that it has approved the project’s construction. According to preliminary estimates, the museum will cost $117 million of which the Lithuanian government is to pay 10 to 15 percent of the total.

According to Prime Minister Gediminas Kirkilas the idea of this museum in Vilnius is highly important. "This project will present Lithuania’s image as that of a modern dynamic country," he said.

The building, which will be situated near the White Bridge, is expected to complete in 2013, the year when Lithuania will preside over the EU. It is anticipated that the project will open with a Kandinsky exhibition with works contributed jointly by the Hermitage and the Guggenheim Museums.

Sharon McHugh
US Correspondent
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Carnival Center for the Performing Arts, Miami, United States

Award winnning Pelli Clarke Pelli architects provide Miami with a unique center for the performing arts
Opened in October, 2006, The Carnival Center for the Performing Arts includes the Sanford and Dolores Ziff Ballet Opera House, the John S. and James L. Knight Concert Hall and an outdoor Plaza of the Arts. The 2480-seat Ballet Opera House complex also houses a 200-seat Studio Theatre and offers community oriented theatre for regional and community groups. The 2200-seat Concert Hall building provides choral seating for 200. Behind the orchestra, the Hall houses educational outreach facilities. Between the two buildings is an outdoor oval-shaped Plaza of the Arts bisected by Biscayne Boulevard. The Plaza, designed by Balmori Associates, supports a wide variety of social and cultural public life and art.
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11 11 Lincoln road, Miami, United States

Herzog & De Meuron’s revolutionary mixed-use design
With over 50, 000 ft of retail space, residential units and a 300+ parking environment, Herzog & De Meuron’s 11 11 Lincoln road is set to have a big impact. 11 11 is a revolutionary new integrated project that will instill an entirely new context for retail, residential, dining, and parking experiences on Lincoln road, Miami beach’s premier pedestrian promenade. Envisioned by developer Robert Wennett and designed by world renowned architects Herzog & De Meuron, 11 11 is set to open this autumn.

11 11 will be a jutting, strutting building, a study in form and structure all muscle without clothing, according to Jacques Herzog. 11 11 will reinterpret the essence of tropical modernism, crisp structures ocean-liner planed with an original modern twist. Angular exterior cut-outs will allow natural light and the Miami landscape within, infusing retail, residential, creative commercial space and parking with a dynamic energy. Car access will curve through the centre cavity and panoramic layouts will display retail units and spectacular city views.
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Battersea Power Station redevelopment, London, United Kingdom

Dramatic new images of Rafael Viñoly’s design for London’s iconic Battersea Power Station
Real Estate Opportunities Limited (“REO”), a London listed property company, today launched the new vision and masterplan for Battersea Power Station.

The iconic Battersea Power Station is to be brought back to life in the most advanced sustainable development ever to be built in this country. For the first time in a quarter of a century, Battersea Power Station will be used to generate electricity again but from renewable sources rather than coal.

Rob Tincknell, Managing Director of REO’s development manager, Treasury Holdings UK, said: “We don’t embark on projects that we can’t deliver. We are determined that Londoners will not be disappointed and this area will be brought back to life in the most spectacular way. It will be a place to live, work and play.”

Alongside the existing power station there will be a new landmark, high quality building designed by the world-renowned architect Rafael Viňoly, which will be the cleanest and greenest building in London through innovative use of natural ventilation.

A spectacular 300 metre high Chimney and Eco-Dome will dramatically reduce carbon emissions of the 38 acre £4 billion development. The Chimney will also house apartments with panoramic views over London. The largest solar driven natural ventilation system ever conceived will eliminate the need for air conditioning for the commercial and ground floor retail accommodation.

The Chimney will draw air up through a campus of high quality individual office buildings which are covered by the light, transparent Eco-Dome, made of material similar to that used at the Eden Project. Up to 3,000 cubic metres per second of air will be drawn through the system on a sunny day, reducing energy demand in the buildings by 67%.

REO is planning to spend £150 million on saving and repairing Sir Giles Gilbert Scott’s 1930s power station, with the key historic spaces retained and open to the public. It will be developed to incorporate hotel, residential and retail accommodation. It will once again be used to produce power with a new combined cooling, heat and power plant, but this time using biofuels, waste and other renewable energy sources. Two of the existing power station’s chimneys will be reused as flues for this new Energy Centre.

The masterplan, unveiled today by Treasury Holdings UK on behalf of REO, will regenerate an area of London that will provide approximately 8 million square feet (750,000 square metres) of residential, office and retail space. There will be a six acre public park, a riverside walk and an urban square.

The Battersea Power Station development will be home to around 7,000 people and up to 20,000 new jobs will be created. More than 3,200 homes will be built on the site and 2,500 jobs will be created during the construction phase.

It is planned that construction work will start in 2012 and the development will be completed by 2020 – depending on the speed of the planning process.

The site is the single largest development site in central London and will act as a catalyst for the regeneration of the wider Nine Elms Corridor.

Treasury Holdings UK is in discussions with Transport for London and other landowners in the Nine Elms about building an extension of the Northern Line from Kennington to bring the Tube into the heart of Battersea.

The development has six key objectives:

• The sensitive regeneration of Battersea Power Station
• The creation of a zero carbon environment
• The delivery of a sustainable mixed-use development which will ensure marketability and strong demand
• To act as a catalyst for regeneration of the Nine Elms Corridor
• To ensure that the project is totally deliverable
• To facilitate a sustainable public transport solution

Rob Tincknell said:

“Climate change is the 21st century’s most urgent challenge and has not been adequately addressed by the development sector. At times like these we are required to open our minds and take a big leap. “This will be a power station for the 21st century, sitting alongside Sir Giles Gilbert Scott’s building and supporting a truly sustainable, zero carbon development. “We believe that we all have a responsibility to commit to true sustainability through groundbreaking innovation and we believe that our development will enhance London’s reputation as a leading global city. “The preservation of Battersea Power Station alongside contemporary architecture will enhance its importance by juxtaposing old and new. Londoners have a strong emotional attachment to this building but most of all they want to see something positive happening on this site. We will meet and exceed their expectations.”

Rafael Vinoly said:

“Centered on the reconstruction of the remarkable architectural presence of the Power Station, the design introduces a fluid geometry for the new residential buildings that helps guide public access to the site and the waterfront. The open character of the vast industrial naves designed by Gilbert Scott is maintained and the chimneys are brought back into operation, utilized to exhaust water vapour produced by a new biofuel energy plant located in the basement. “Offset from the volume of the Power Station, a near transparent shaft counterpoints the monumental mass of the building, providing a naturally ventilated office complex. A transparent envelope accommodating a distinctive public space, with access to a new underground station, connects to an adjacent residential component. “The visual presence of this near transparent marker on the skyline defines a new opportunity area signalling London's commitment to innovation and sustainability.”
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