From the architect. Working closely with Lewisham Council, its partners and young people, RCKa developed proposals to satisfy a funding brief for a “world-class” building; from the use of innovative sustainable construction and high-quality design to extensive participation of young people, whose involvement continued through the detailed design, construction, management and governance of the building and services.
Central to this vision was the creation of a democratic and flexible building that responds to the changing demands of its occupants. A dramatic central space resolves complex site levels and forms a vibrant heart, providing an event landscape that engages and welcomes visitors, and is alive with activity and opportunity.
Exposed structural timber forms and elegant coffered ceiling and wall finish, selected for its natural warmth and ability to resist post-tender D&B value-engineering. Clean lines and dramatic open spaces aid security through natural surveillance, and result in a bright and vibrant inclusive internal atmosphere.
External cladding is unified by a gently undulating profile that casts vertical shadows across curtain-like elevations. Reflective foil-faced insulation beneath polycarbonate creates a sunlight-responsive shimmering skin, beneath which is hung delicately faceted porcelain-like ultra-high performance concrete panels: an attractive, tactile and robust base to the building.
RCKa identified the potential of the site for a significant facility being aware of Lewisham’s emerging youth policy and were instrumental in securing project funding.
The practice’s aim was to create a positive place in which young people find inspiration, where they feel safe and secure, and in which they want to spend time.
From the architect. The quiet and archetypal form of the saddle roof house offers a large spatial and functional diversity inside by merging into compex room situations, the changing room heights, gallery situations and light from all directions.
It is thus given spatial correlation to the concept of “Open Kindergarten”. A terrace that is situated on the south facade, mediates between group rooms and garden. The canopy of the terrace offers year-round weather and sun protection. Group rooms, exercise room, corridor and foyer get an additional exposure over the skylight on the north side of the roof. Hung windows on the facades and skylights are used for night ventilation.
Vitra may be synonymous with an exalted list of Mid Century Modern furniture and accessories, but the Swiss brand’s smaller-scale offerings are also a fine investment for design enthusiasts with more modest ambitions. One of our favorites is the Toolbox designed by Arik Levy in 2010, a functional carryall which keeps implements and sundries readily available in stylish, orderly fashion. Made of lightweight ABS plastic, the caddy’s clean profile, generous proportions, and wide range of colors lend it both practical and visual cache without costing the earth.
Chris Precht of penda / Vienna and Alex Daxböck sent us their recent project titled the "O", an elliptically shaped bridge proposal for the RIBA-sponsored Salford Meadows Bridge International Design Competition. For their entries, participants had to design a pedestrian bridge for Salford, England -- one of the fastest growing areas in the Manchester City Region. The winning bridge design will stand as a unique and iconic landmark for the site.
From the architect. Placing second overall, just a few points behind the winning 2013 Solar Decathlon team, students from the University of Nevada Las Vegas (Team Las Vegas) have won the “Market Appeal” contest at the Department of Energy’s (DOE) sixth solar-home competition. Known as “DesertSol”, the project was lauded for its “livability, marketability and constructability” as well as its “appeal within the housing market of the target client chosen by team.” It is designed to be a self-reliant, energy-efficient second home for upper-middle income Americans who pursue active lifestyles in the sparsely populated Mojave Desert. Read on for the team’s project description.
DesertSol takes advantage of the Mojave Desert’s renewable resources to produce a sustainable home that is self-reliant in the severe desert climate. Its unique name was derived directly from the team’s goals for the project, which provides “solutions to sustainable desert living” by harnessing “solar energy as the home’s primary fuel source” and embodying the “soul” of the Mojave Desert.
The home is clad in pre-weathered materials that are capable of enduring the harsh desert environment. Structurally, non-traditional framing techniques are used to reduce the usage of certain materials and create a more efficient thermal envelope. In addition to this, a number of energy-saving features have been made to ensure the home will achieve LEED Platinum status. These features include:
- Passive design techniques and a tightly constructed envelope to decrease the energy load.
- State-of-the-art photovoltaic solar panels with high efficiency micro-inverters, controlled individually to offer maximum power point tracking.
- Ductless heat pump system that eliminates energy losses typically found in a traditional central forced air duct system.
- An energy recovery ventilation system which recovers 70%-80% of the energy in outgoing air and transfers it to the incoming fresh air.
- LED lighting, which significantly reduces the power needed for the lighting systems.
In terms of proper water management, DesertSol collects rainwater and moisture and reuses it for evaporative cooling as well as irrigation for landscaping. The home also utilizes clean water and it’s extremely useful thermal properties (water transfers heat approximately 20 times more efficiently than air!) in a unique way. Hydronic radiant floor heating system is among the most cost-effective and efficient type of heating systems available.
A host of new technologies are used to give DesertSol’s residents an exciting amount of control over their environment. To complement efficient lighting, the home automation system can be used to dim, turn off, and turn on the lighting, even when the occupants are not home. The same level of control is had over the HVAC systems as well. By becoming more familiar with how energy in used, both in terms of real-time as well as historical usage, residents may even be encouraged to save energy.
Learn more about DesertSol here on the Team Las Vegas’ website.
From the architect. The House is located in a suburb of Athens city, called Gerakas. It is surrounded by other private residences with gardens, narrow plots and unformed public spaces, which in the future will become parks and green zone areas. Due to the narrow and deep shape of the site and with an exclusive view to a park at the front side, we decided the volume of housing to reach the two adjacent sites.
Basic principle at the architecture of the residence which created its final form was the capture of functional development in the shell.
The white color of the dominant volume is combined with an antiquated wood of cedar ,which covers the facade of the 1st floor surface, and paneled clean glass surfaces which surround the site. The modern design of the building is combined with similar choices at the interior decoration.
At the ground floor there is the living room, the kitchen and the dining room, but also a wine cellar and parking spaces. The fireplace in tones of grey dominates the living room, while upstairs the respectively selected tints in wallpapers and lightings offer tranquility in the family. To take advantage of the view to the park, we organized the living room at the front part of the ground floor and the kitchen at the back, with direct contact to a private garden.
A curved wall at the left edge of the site leads the visitor gradually towards the entrance of the residence. At the center of the house there is an internal patio, which goes through all the floor levels and diffuses natural light in the residence. With the creation of this internal patio we provide, natural light and cooling in the house and also create a beautiful internal garden in the residence.
The 1st floor was developed as one volume throughout the width of the site, taking advantage of the view towards the park from all bedrooms. Furthermore, as cantilever it shelters the entrance of the residence. This level hosts a private family living room and the private spaces of the bedrooms and the bathrooms.
Following the news last month that the RIBA and the Mayor of London’s Office revealed the five shortlisted designs for the new Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) headquarters, it has been announced that Allford Hall Monaghan Morris‘s (AHMM) design has won. The competition attracted submissions from the likes of Foster + Partners, Allies & Morrison, Keith Williams Architects and Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands. AHMM’s proposal will be located in London’s Whitehall Conservation Area and is set for completion in 2015.
According to the RIBA, the current Metropolitan Police Service headquarters, New Scotland Yard, is being sold so the MPS can move to “more modern, cost effective offices at the iconic Curtis Green building on the Victoria Embankment.” This building is to be known as Scotland Yard marking a symbolic return to it’s original home following it’s departure in 1967. The building that AHMM will be working with was built between 1935 and 1940 and was originally designed by William Curtis Green who was awarded the RIBA Gold Medal in 1942.
Paul Monaghan, Director at AHMM, said that “this is a very important project for [us] with the opportunity to work with one of the most significant and longest established law enforcement bodies in the world” and are looking forward to working with the MPS to “develop a building that supports them in their changing role within the city.”
Bill Taylor, an advisor for RIBA Competitions stated that “‘weaving’ the heritage and culture of the Metropolitan Police into the fabric of the building and the spaces that surround it” was important, as well as striking “a balance between respect for what already exists and the desire of the client to present a new, open and progressive face to the community they serve.”
You can check out the other submissions here.
In Focus is Archinect's series of features dedicated to profiling the photographers who help make the work of architects look that much better. What has attracted them to architecture? How do they work? What type of equipment do they use? What do they think about seeing their work in blogs?
In this feature, we talk to Stockholm-based English photographer Robin Hayes.
In stark contrast to the surrounding traditional architecture from the 19th and 20th century, this villa in Bilthoven, the Netherlands showcases a highly modern design. The project was recently completed by Clijsters Architectuur Studio and showcases an irregular shape, with distinct geometric protuberances adding up to the main white volume. With an inspiring placement in the center of the property, the building is completely surrounded by green outdoor spaces.
All interiors are generously-sized and flooded in natural light, due to the 22-metre-long glass front, opening up the living zones towards the terrace. The architects further explain that “the focal point on the ground floor is the open kitchen, around which the dining and living areas are grouped. Also glazed, the study, which faces the street, is protected from inquisitive eyes by an expanded mesh grille. The upper floor is divided into areas for the children and for the parents”. [Photography: Jean-Martin Clijsters]
You're reading Irregular White Residential “Box”: Modern Villa Bilthoven in the Netherlands originally posted on Freshome.
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It appears that cities of today, and especially big cities, all around the world, are all struggling with similar problems, as they all have developed huge territories - their metropolitan or "greater" areas - during the twentieth century that cannot be properly understood by anyone in terms of their form, but that now need to be recognized as something that truly exists, because it is a form that is in perpetual transformation and without limits.
It appears that cities of today, and especially big cities, all around the world, are all struggling with similar problems, as they all have developed huge territories - their metropolitan or "greater" areas - during the twentieth century that cannot be properly understood by anyone in terms of their form, but that now need to be recognized as something that truly exists, because it is a form that is in perpetual transformation and without limits.This is where Antoine Grumbach sees the main difficulty when it comes to "Greater Urbanism" as he explains in an interview with us entitled "Unlimited Greatness". In such unlimited spaces infrastructure plays without doubt a crucial role constructing a connected geography and reconfiguring new urban morphologies, as Fabrizia Berlingieri and Manuela Triggianese argue in their piece "From Utopia to Real World - Construction of a Unique Metropolitan Space of Europe". But a metropolitan strategy that focuses exclusively on mass transport rema...