Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute’s Ground/Work Competition

Last May, the Van Alen Institute of New York called on emerging architects to design an engaging and accessible street-level venue for the Institute to house its entire work space and public programs. This past July the competition finalists were revealed and now Collective–LOK has been announced as the winner of Ground/Work: A Design Competition for Van Alen Institute’s New Street-Level Space.

Read on to learn about their winning design…

“Collective–LOK’s proposal offers a vision that is both sophisticated and sensitive to the needs of Van Alen as an evolving cultural organization,” said David van der Leer, Executive Director of Van Alen Institute. “As we refocus the Institute on research and programs that also explore cities, we are fortunate to collaborate with this inspiring design team.”

Over 120 teams across 20 countries submitted entries, but, in a public online vote, Collective-LOK’s proposal won out. The winning team, composed of Jon Lott (PARA-Project), William O’Brien Jr. (WOJR), and Michael Kubo (over,under), was selected from a group of three finalists invited by the Ground/Work jury to develop full design proposals over a six-week period.

Apart from a flexible program, the project brief required a comfortable and efficient office environment for different scales and modes of working. The proposal also needed to engage the street, in order to bring the Van Alen’s mission into the urban realm, while also providing a framework that could grow to include the second floor and basement as the institution expanded.

Collective–LOK’s proposal, titled Screen Play, presents a highly flexible space, utilizing a subtle interplay of surfaces and screens, which allow for the diverse range of uses demanded by the activities of the Institute - including exhibitions, lectures, reading groups and book launches. Screen Play orders these spatial, curatorial and temporal scenarios through five types of screen play: 

1. Along the east face, a polycarbonate wall of fixed and sliding panels masks a dense poche of private and semi-private programs, producing a figure in plan that is calibrated along its length to accommodate different scales of use from work areas to public events.

2. Above, a synthetic ceiling houses projectors, track and fluorescent lighting, acoustic cones, and mechanical equipment within a module that inverts the traditional heavy coffer into a geometry that both obscures and reveals what lies above.

3. Along the west wall, a long niche provides a panoramic screen for continuous multi-projection as well as uninterrupted wall space for exhibition display, seating, and storage.

4. Mirrored exterior screens extend the space outward to include the mobile street seat in front and an outdoor terrace in back, doubling the facade to create a layered threshold from the city into the institutional space of the Van Alen.

5. Translucent interior scrims can be lowered from the ceiling to bracket different programmatic areas, allowing the scale of spaces to be controlled for curatorial and staff needs.

The trio now has four months to complete design work and develop construction documents in order to break ground in winter 2013.

Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Street screen . Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Office scenario. Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Lecture scenario. Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Dinner scenario. Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Multi-projection exhibition scenario. Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Scenario diagram. Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Axonometric view . Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Plan and section. Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Ceiling detail . Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK Collective-LOK Wins Van Alen Institute's Ground/Work Competition Collective–LOK: Jon Lott, William O’Brien Jr., Michael Kubo. Image Courtesy of Collective-LOK

References: Archdaily (1, 2), CreateSend, VanAlen.org

AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art

The entrance to the Museum of Modern Art is tucked beneath a demure facade of granite and glass in Midtown Manhattan. Its clean, regular planes mark Yoshio Taniguchi’s 2004 addition to the MoMA’s sequence of facades, which he preserved as a record of its form. Taniguchi’s contribution sits beside the 1984 residential tower by Cesar Pelli and Associates, followed by and Edward Durell Stone’s original 1939 building, then Philip Johnson’s 1964 addition. Taniguchi was hired in 1997 to expand the Museum’s space and synthesize its disparate elements. His elegant, minimal solution presents a contemporary face for the MoMA while adhering to its Modernist roots.

In unifying the Museum’s built form, Taniguchi refined select edges of the building’s history while dissolving others. The original 1939 International Style building was restored, including its white marble facade and piano canopy. Philip Johnson’s 1953 Sculpture Garden was also renovated and enlarged. Taniguchi envisioned the garden as the museum’s core, providing views from each of the surrounding buildings. Two volumes of equal height frame the east and west ends of the garden, housing the Education and Research Building and main gallery complex, respectively. To the south, a similar palette of thin columns and opaque white glass replaced the first seven stories of Pelli’s residential tower. From within the Sculpture Garden, this consistent language allows visitors to understand the complex as a whole. Along 54th Street, the symmetrical volumes are clad in black granite, dark gray glass, and aluminum, linking the site across its full length. 

Taniguchi achieved the refined, minimal aesthetic by exacting precision in each detail. The panels on the exterior facades were installed with the least possible tolerance, diminishing the seams to create an apparently continuous surface. Vast panes of glass hang beneath the deep porticoes bounding the Sculpture Garden. To ensure the glass would not deflect as the museum filled with visitors, the curtain walls were freed from the floor structure. Steel mullions were chosen over the standard aluminum to allow a thinner profile of sufficient strength.

Taniguchi’s solution mediates between the chaos of the city and an environment for viewing art. The Museum represents a microcosm of Manhattan, with buildings of various character surrounding a central garden. The main lobby extends from the 53rd Street entrance to the Sculpture Garden along 54th, creating a porous transition between the interior and its urban context. While moving through the galleries, visitors encounter unexpected views of New York’s streets and skyline. Though the classic, white box galleries are typical of many contemporary museums, Taniguchi incorporated this system of vistas to reveal the MoMA’s unique context.

The original museum prescribed a linear reading of the history of modern art, with each gallery limited to a single entrance. The MoMA’s administrators and architects agreed the expansion should encourage simultaneous and interrelated discoveries, rejecting the idea of a single viewing itinerary. The new galleries can be accessed at any level via a spine of escalators and ancillary stairs, with contemporary art nearest ground level and progressively older works on higher stories. Large, sky-lit space for temporary exhibitions is provided on the top floor. The galleries lack distinct borders, each offering multiple entrance points to neighboring galleries. The 21 ft. high contemporary galleries span 200 ft. to accommodate contemporary art of unanticipated format. The space is free of columns, accomplished by constructing an armature above the eighth story which supports the lower levels. 

As visitors move through the lobby toward the Sculpture Garden, they pass beneath the 110 ft. high atrium. Perforations in the galleries and stairways allow visitors to peer into its soaring space, where they appear framed in the white, rectangular apertures. These strategically placed windows lend the atrium a subtle gravity as occupants move through the galleries around it. The space is crossed at each level by bridges leading to the escalator spine and orients visitors within the gallery complex.

The MoMA recently announced plans for another expansion to the west of the current building, directly adjacent to the American Folk Art Museum. It is set to include a 1050 ft. tower designed by Ateliers Jean Nouvel, which will house additional gallery space for the Museum. The MoMA received strong opposition from the architecture and design world after stating it would replace the American Folk Art Museum with a connecting wing to the planned expansion site. The MoMA has since hired Diller Scofidio + Renfro to design the connector and granted the architects time to consider the possibility of integrating the existing American Folk Art Museum. For more on the Museum, check out our interview with Pedro Gadanho, the Curator for Contemporary Architecture at the MoMA.

Architects: Yoshio Taniguchi, Cesar Pelli and Associates, Philip Johnson, Philip Goodwin, Edward Durell Stone
Location: 11 West 53rd Street, New York, NY 10019, USA
Architect In Charge: Yoshio Taniguchi
Executive Architects: Kohn Pedersen Fox
Architects, 1984 Expansion: Cesar Pelli and Associates
Architect, 1964 Addition: Philip Johnson
Architect, 1953 Sculpture Garden: Philip Johnson
Architects, 1939 Building: Philip Goodwin, Edward Durell Stone
Area: 630000.0 ft2
Year: 2004
Photographs: Timothy Hursley, Joseph Holmes, MoMA, Jock Pottle, Yoshio Taniguchi

AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the gallery complex from the Sculpture Garden. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art 53rd Street entrance. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Atrium. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the gallery complex from 54th Street. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Sequence of facades on 53rd Street. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Joseph Holmes AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Restored piano canopy over the entrance to the 1939 Goodwin and Stone building. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the 54th Street facade looking west. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the lobby overlooking the Sculpture Garden. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Joseph Holmes AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Temporary exhibition gallery. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Staircase to 2nd floor with Andy Warhol’s Cow wallpaper in the Education and Research Building. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Sculpture Garden, 1953. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition model by Yoshio Taniguchi. Image © Jock Pottle AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketches. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketch. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketch. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Museum of Modern Art, 1939. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art 53rd Street facades, 1960s. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Cesar Pelli's west wing expansion, 1984. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The first exhibition of the Museum of Modern Art, November 7, 1929. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition model by Yoshio Taniguchi. Image © Jock Pottle AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Subcellar and entry level plans © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Second and third level plans © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Longitudinal section through lobby © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Longitudinal section through atrium © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Section through atrium © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Axonometric © Taniguchi & Associates

AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art

The entrance to the Museum of Modern Art is tucked beneath a demure facade of granite and glass in Midtown Manhattan. Its clean, regular planes mark Yoshio Taniguchi’s 2004 addition to the MoMA’s sequence of facades, which he preserved as a record of its form. Taniguchi’s contribution sits beside the 1984 residential tower by Cesar Pelli and Associates, followed by and Edward Durell Stone’s original 1939 building, then Philip Johnson’s 1964 addition. Taniguchi was hired in 1997 to expand the Museum’s space and synthesize its disparate elements. His elegant, minimal solution presents a contemporary face for the MoMA while adhering to its Modernist roots.

In unifying the Museum’s built form, Taniguchi refined select edges of the building’s history while dissolving others. The original 1939 International Style building was restored, including its white marble facade and piano canopy. Philip Johnson’s 1953 Sculpture Garden was also renovated and enlarged. Taniguchi envisioned the garden as the museum’s core, providing views from each of the surrounding buildings. Two volumes of equal height frame the east and west ends of the garden, housing the Education and Research Building and main gallery complex, respectively. To the south, a similar palette of thin columns and opaque white glass replaced the first seven stories of Pelli’s residential tower. From within the Sculpture Garden, this consistent language allows visitors to understand the complex as a whole. Along 54th Street, the symmetrical volumes are clad in black granite, dark gray glass, and aluminum, linking the site across its full length. 

Taniguchi achieved the refined, minimal aesthetic by exacting precision in each detail. The panels on the exterior facades were installed with the least possible tolerance, diminishing the seams to create an apparently continuous surface. Vast panes of glass hang beneath the deep porticoes bounding the Sculpture Garden. To ensure the glass would not deflect as the museum filled with visitors, the curtain walls were freed from the floor structure. Steel mullions were chosen over the standard aluminum to allow a thinner profile of sufficient strength.

Taniguchi’s solution mediates between the chaos of the city and an environment for viewing art. The Museum represents a microcosm of Manhattan, with buildings of various character surrounding a central garden. The main lobby extends from the 53rd Street entrance to the Sculpture Garden along 54th, creating a porous transition between the interior and its urban context. While moving through the galleries, visitors encounter unexpected views of New York’s streets and skyline. Though the classic, white box galleries are typical of many contemporary museums, Taniguchi incorporated this system of vistas to reveal the MoMA’s unique context.

The original museum prescribed a linear reading of the history of modern art, with each gallery limited to a single entrance. The MoMA’s administrators and architects agreed the expansion should encourage simultaneous and interrelated discoveries, rejecting the idea of a single viewing itinerary. The new galleries can be accessed at any level via a spine of escalators and ancillary stairs, with contemporary art nearest ground level and progressively older works on higher stories. Large, sky-lit space for temporary exhibitions is provided on the top floor. The galleries lack distinct borders, each offering multiple entrance points to neighboring galleries. The 21 ft. high contemporary galleries span 200 ft. to accommodate contemporary art of unanticipated format. The space is free of columns, accomplished by constructing an armature above the eighth story which supports the lower levels. 

As visitors move through the lobby toward the Sculpture Garden, they pass beneath the 110 ft. high atrium. Perforations in the galleries and stairways allow visitors to peer into its soaring space, where they appear framed in the white, rectangular apertures. These strategically placed windows lend the atrium a subtle gravity as occupants move through the galleries around it. The space is crossed at each level by bridges leading to the escalator spine and orients visitors within the gallery complex.

The MoMA recently announced plans for another expansion to the west of the current building, directly adjacent to the American Folk Art Museum. It is set to include a 1050 ft. tower designed by Ateliers Jean Nouvel, which will house additional gallery space for the Museum. The MoMA received strong opposition from the architecture and design world after stating it would replace the American Folk Art Museum with a connecting wing to the planned expansion site. The MoMA has since hired Diller Scofidio + Renfro to design the connector and granted the architects time to consider the possibility of integrating the existing American Folk Art Museum. For more on the Museum, check out our interview with Pedro Gadanho, the Curator for Contemporary Architecture at the MoMA.

Architects: Yoshio Taniguchi, Cesar Pelli and Associates, Philip Johnson, Philip Goodwin, Edward Durell Stone
Location: 11 West 53rd Street, New York, NY 10019, USA
Architect In Charge: Yoshio Taniguchi
Executive Architects: Kohn Pedersen Fox
Architects, 1984 Expansion: Cesar Pelli and Associates
Architect, 1964 Addition: Philip Johnson
Architect, 1953 Sculpture Garden: Philip Johnson
Architects, 1939 Building: Philip Goodwin, Edward Durell Stone
Area: 630000.0 ft2
Year: 2004
Photographs: Timothy Hursley, Joseph Holmes, MoMA, Jock Pottle, Yoshio Taniguchi

AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the gallery complex from the Sculpture Garden. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art 53rd Street entrance. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Atrium. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the gallery complex from 54th Street. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Sequence of facades on 53rd Street. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Joseph Holmes AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Restored piano canopy over the entrance to the 1939 Goodwin and Stone building. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the 54th Street facade looking west. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the lobby overlooking the Sculpture Garden. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Joseph Holmes AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Temporary exhibition gallery. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Staircase to 2nd floor with Andy Warhol’s Cow wallpaper in the Education and Research Building. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Sculpture Garden, 1953. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition model by Yoshio Taniguchi. Image © Jock Pottle AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketches. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketch. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketch. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Museum of Modern Art, 1939. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art 53rd Street facades, 1960s. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Cesar Pelli's west wing expansion, 1984. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The first exhibition of the Museum of Modern Art, November 7, 1929. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition model by Yoshio Taniguchi. Image © Jock Pottle AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Subcellar and entry level plans © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Second and third level plans © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Longitudinal section through lobby © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Longitudinal section through atrium © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Section through atrium © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Axonometric © Taniguchi & Associates

AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art

The entrance to the Museum of Modern Art is tucked beneath a demure facade of granite and glass in Midtown . Its clean, regular planes mark Yoshio Taniguchi’s 2004 addition to the MoMA’s sequence of facades, which he preserved as a record of its form. Taniguchi’s contribution sits beside the 1984 residential tower by Cesar Pelli and Associates, followed by Philip Goodwin and Edward Durell Stone’s original 1939 building, then Philip Johnson’s 1964 addition. Taniguchi was hired in 1997 to expand the Museum’s space and synthesize its disparate elements. His elegant, minimal solution presents a contemporary face for the MoMA while adhering to its Modernist roots.

In unifying the Museum’s built form, Taniguchi refined select edges of the building’s history while dissolving others. The original 1939 International Style building was restored, including its white marble facade and piano canopy. ’s 1953 Sculpture Garden was also renovated and enlarged. Taniguchi envisioned the garden as the museum’s core, providing views from each of the surrounding buildings. Two volumes of equal height frame the east and west ends of the garden, housing the Education and Research Building and main gallery complex, respectively. To the south, a similar palette of thin columns and opaque white glass replaced the first seven stories of Pelli’s residential tower. From within the Sculpture Garden, this consistent language allows visitors to understand the complex as a whole. Along 54th Street, the symmetrical volumes are clad in black granite, dark gray glass, and aluminum, linking the site across its full length. 

Taniguchi achieved the refined, minimal aesthetic by exacting precision in each detail. The panels on the exterior facades were installed with the least possible tolerance, diminishing the seams to create an apparently continuous surface. Vast panes of glass hang beneath the deep porticoes bounding the Sculpture Garden. To ensure the glass would not deflect as the museum filled with visitors, the curtain walls were freed from the floor structure. Steel mullions were chosen over the standard aluminum to allow a thinner profile of sufficient strength.

Taniguchi’s solution mediates between the chaos of the city and an environment for viewing art. The Museum represents a microcosm of Manhattan, with buildings of various character surrounding a central garden. The main lobby extends from the 53rd Street entrance to the Sculpture Garden along 54th, creating a porous transition between the interior and its urban context. While moving through the galleries, visitors encounter unexpected views of New York’s streets and skyline. Though the classic, white box galleries are typical of many contemporary museums, Taniguchi incorporated this system of vistas to reveal the MoMA’s unique context.

The original museum prescribed a linear reading of the history of modern art, with each gallery limited to a single entrance. The MoMA’s administrators and architects agreed the expansion should encourage simultaneous and interrelated discoveries, rejecting the idea of a single viewing itinerary. The new galleries can be accessed at any level via a spine of escalators and ancillary stairs, with contemporary art nearest ground level and progressively older works on higher stories. Large, sky-lit space for temporary exhibitions is provided on the top floor. The galleries lack distinct borders, each offering multiple entrance points to neighboring galleries. The 21 ft. high contemporary galleries span 200 ft. to accommodate contemporary art of unanticipated format. The space is free of columns, accomplished by constructing an armature above the eighth story which supports the lower levels. 

As visitors move through the lobby toward the Sculpture Garden, they pass beneath the 110 ft. high atrium. Perforations in the galleries and stairways allow visitors to peer into its soaring space, where they appear framed in the white, rectangular apertures. These strategically placed windows lend the atrium a subtle gravity as occupants move through the galleries around it. The space is crossed at each level by bridges leading to the escalator spine and orients visitors within the gallery complex.

The MoMA recently announced plans for another expansion to the west of the current building, directly adjacent to the American Folk Art Museum. It is set to include a 1050 ft. tower designed by Ateliers Jean Nouvel, which will house additional gallery space for the Museum. The MoMA received strong opposition from the architecture and design world after stating it would replace the American Folk Art Museum with a connecting wing to the planned expansion site. The MoMA has since hired Diller Scofidio + Renfro to design the connector and granted the architects time to consider the possibility of integrating the existing American Folk Art Museum. For more on the Museum, check out our interview with Pedro Gadanho, the Curator for Contemporary Architecture at the MoMA.

Architects: Yoshio Taniguchi, Cesar Pelli and Associates, Philip Johnson, Philip Goodwin, Edward Durell Stone
Location: 11 West 53rd Street, New York, NY 10019, USA
Architect In Charge: Yoshio Taniguchi
Executive Architects: Kohn Pedersen Fox
Architects, 1984 Expansion: Cesar Pelli and Associates
Architect, 1964 Addition: Philip Johnson
Architect, 1953 Sculpture Garden: Philip Johnson
Architects, 1939 Building: Philip Goodwin, Edward Durell Stone
Area: 630000.0 ft2
Year: 2004
Photographs: Timothy Hursley, Joseph Holmes, MoMA, Jock Pottle, Yoshio Taniguchi

AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the gallery complex from the Sculpture Garden. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art 53rd Street entrance. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Atrium. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the gallery complex from 54th Street. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Sequence of facades on 53rd Street. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Joseph Holmes AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Restored piano canopy over the entrance to the 1939 Goodwin and Stone building. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the 54th Street facade looking west. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art View of the lobby overlooking the Sculpture Garden. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art © Joseph Holmes AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Temporary exhibition gallery. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Staircase to 2nd floor with Andy Warhol’s Cow wallpaper in the Education and Research Building. Image © Timothy Hursley AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Sculpture Garden, 1953. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition model by Yoshio Taniguchi. Image © Jock Pottle AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketches. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketch. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition sketch. Image © Yoshio Taniguchi AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The Museum of Modern Art, 1939. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art 53rd Street facades, 1960s. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Cesar Pelli's west wing expansion, 1984. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art The first exhibition of the Museum of Modern Art, November 7, 1929. Image © MoMA AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Competition model by Yoshio Taniguchi. Image © Jock Pottle AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Subcellar and entry level plans © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Second and third level plans © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Longitudinal section through lobby © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Longitudinal section through atrium © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Section through atrium © Taniguchi & Associates AD Classics: The Museum of Modern Art Axonometric © Taniguchi & Associates

Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank

Architects: Urban-Think Tank
Location: , Venezuela
Design Team: Alfredo Brillembourg and Hubert Klumpner
Project Team: José Antonio Nuñez, Carlos Bastidas, Alfredo Brillembourg, Patrick Edlinger, Elizabeth Florian, Cesar Gavidia, Dora Kelle, Hubert Klumpner, Rafael Machado, Claudia Ochoa, Regina Orvañanos, Juan Ponce, Matt Tarczynski
Photographs: Iwan Baan

Landscape: Topotek 1: Martin Rein-Cano, Christian Bohne
Construction: Constructora Norberto Odebrecht S.A. (CNO) (supervisión Metro de Caracas)
Client: C.A. Metro de Caracas
Consultants: Felix Caraballo (manejo de comunidades); Intégral Ruedi Baur & Associés: Ruedi Baur (diseño gráfico)
Research Team: Michael Contento, Lindsey Sherman
Engineering: DAC: Deleida Alvarez (proyecto, coordinación), Carlos Silva (supervisión del sitio y proyecto); Doppelmayr Seilbahnen GmbH: Martin Schöffel (sistema de cableo interurbano) Representative of Doppelmayr in Venezuela; Eduardo Lopez (diseño estructural); Robert Silman Associates: Pat Arnett (diseño conceptual estructural)

From the architect. The first stage of this project involves a radical new approach in urban design and planning. Our extensive experience working in neighborhoods and with community leaders contrary to being naive, these communities are often well informed with expertise learned in the field on the principles of planning and development.

In this sense the approach to the project includes the following:

• A symposium and presentation made at the Central University of Venezuela, attended by architects, planners and other experts in the area, activists and community leaders who criticized the plan presented by the government.

• The creation of a working group from Urban Think Tank with residents of Barrio San Agustin and volunteers in order to explore alternatives.

• Selection of the cable car system with the workforce. The decision was made based on the best potential alternative, according to the terrain, minimal invasion of the existing urban fabric, high sustainability and flexibility.

• One day of intensive community work conducted by the group to redefine and refine design concepts.

• Analysis, planning, media outreach campaign and presentations, were needed to build the support and financing of the project.

The Metro Cable car system is integrated with the Caracas Metro system. It has a length of 2.1 km and uses as transportation a funicular system with a capacity of 8 passengers each. The total system capacity is estimated at about 1,200 people per hour in each direction.

Two of the stations are located in the valley itself and serve as connections with the public transport system of the capital. The 3 additional stations will be located on the mountain, along the route in plots that concentrate fundamental community needs such as: accessibility, adequate pedestrian circulation patterns and constructive sustainability. All this under criteria of minimum expropriation and demolition of existing houses.

The 5 stations of the Metro Cable system, have a number of common fundamental basic components, which are: level platform, access ramps, well defined circulation patterns, materials and structural elements. However, each station differs in its configuration and additional functions. Each station includes cultural and social spaces as well as administrative space. The construction of public spaces, a vertical gym, a supermarket and a nursery are also planned.

The key criteria underlying the award of the Urban Think Tank to the working group for the Urban Metro Cable project was the subject on which the problem arose in the first place, what kind of city we want to see in 2025. Only focusing on anticipating the capacity of the system, for example, made no sense.

For the design of the project we took into account the lessons learned from project for the Long Island Expressway in , which was already obsolete before construction was completed. We can’t build “for tomorrow”, but we should instead design so as to be able to build “tomorrow.” Furthermore taking into account the changes in the informal city, which are not only extremely fast but exceptionally transformative.

On the other hand, the goal we pursued was to implement the means for change in relation to the fundamental needs of Barrio San Agustin, which its inhabitants identified as:

- Safe access to public transport for residents of the neighborhood.
- The development of employment opportunities for the economy of the neighborhood.
- The development of sustainable infrastructure to give permanence and stability to the community.
- Improvements in health, education, employment opportunities and quality of life for the residents of San Agustin.
- Safety and crime reduction.

We are waiting for the year 2025 or before with two individual aspirations: First, that the transport scheme of San Agustin is transferred to other neighborhoods of Caracas and eventually affect the physical, economic and cultural development of the formal and informal city. And second, that the strengthening of the organization of neighborhood communities perpetuate and develop with more influence by giving them control of their own destiny.

Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank © Iwan Baan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank © Iwan Baan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank © Iwan Baan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank © Iwan Baan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Rendering Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank © Iwan Baan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank © Iwan Baan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank © Iwan Baan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank © Iwan Baan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Site Plan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Exploded perspective: System Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Site Plan Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Isometric: Metrocable Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Station Section Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Station Section Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Station Section Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank La Ceiba Station Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Parque Central Station Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Vertigal Gym Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Growing House Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Music School Metro Cable Caracas / Urban-Think Tank Elevation

City Modern Home Tours

Visit some of the city’s most gawk-worthy homes designed and furnished by ’s top architects and interior decorators. From a penthouse with a three-story slide to the ultimate man cave, these private residences exemplify ingenuity, innovation, and forward-thinking urban design.

The week kicks off on September 27 with a Meet the Architects celebration, followed by a weekend of mag-worthy City Modern home tours in Manhattan and . From real life chutes and ladders at the Skyhouse – the four-story penthouse in the Financial District, complete with an 80-foot-long mirror-polished stainless steel slide – to the decked out, James-Bond-meets-Barbarella pad of Flavor Paper kingpin Jon Sherman – this tour is sure to stir the senses as well as great design ideas for any home. 

An A-list of notable firms bring ticket-buyers 10 breath-taking homes, including David Hotson Architect, Architecture in Formation, Leone Design Studio, Asfour Guzy Architects, Resolution: 4 Architecture, James Cleary Architecture, Skylab Architects, Christian Hubert Studio, Bergen Street Studio and Ben Hansen Architect. Proceeds from the ticket sales benefit Architecture for Humanity. The Meet the Architects opening event on September 27 in Soho offers the chance to meet them all and to get a sneak peek of the homes.

On View> “Behind Closed Doors: Art in the Spanish American Home” Opens Today at the Brooklyn Museum

Behind Closed Doors: Art in the Spanish American Home, 1492–1898 Brooklyn Museum 200 Eastern Parkway Brooklyn, NY September 20–January 12, 2014 Within a hundred years of the Spanish empire first expanding its borders into the Americas, an abundance of incredible wealth had been amassed in the New World. This September, Brooklyn Museum is opening its doors and inviting […]

Watch TEDCity2.0: Dream me. Build me. Make me real.

Live Stream

Calling all urban innovators, organizers, stewards and builders: Today, September 20th, from 9am to 5pm EST, curators Chris Anderson, John Cary and Courtney Martin will kick off TEDCity2.0: Dream me. Build me. Make me real. The day-long event, which will be live-streamed for free, will share stories of urban ingenuity and interdependence from across the globe, while featuring an unexpected mix of over 20 speakers, including walkability expert , world renowned architectural photographer Iwan Baan, and several 2012 City 2.0 Award winners. View the event program for more details.

Situ Fabrication Cracks Google’s Code

Brought to you with support from:   HLW’s binary design for Google’s New York office supports the company’s product offerings. Google is renowned in design circles for its unique offices around the globe, and the main lobby of the Internet search giant’s New York City office is no exception. Architecture firm HLW took its inspiration […]

The Newest Hazard in the Rockaways? Rust

Designed to survive the force of a hurricane, the new prefab bathrooms by Garrison Architects have apparently not been weathering this mild summer very well. DNAinfo reported that the stations are leaking and many surfaces are rusting in the salty air. “I look at it now and I say, ‘Is this going to last the winter?’” […]

Andres Jaque/Office for Political Innovation: Different Kinds of Water Pouring into a Swimming Pool

In this first solo project by Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation in Los Angeles, the architect prepares an exhibition, with a series of architectural case studies based in the city of L.A., in which he problematizes the importance of such cases as places of socialization and community, leaving behind the stereotypes that characterize them as disconnected spaces, symbols of ultra-individuality and comfort.

In an interview with Orson Welles in 1964 about the witch-hunt being carried out against Hollywood celebrities during the McCarthy-era, the filmmaker pointed out a strange paradox: while many people during the Second World War had betrayed their friends to save their own lives, in the golden-age of Hollywood, people did it to save their swimming pools. Far from downplaying Orson Welles’ observation, it is nonetheless interesting how these aquatic scenarios and backyard gardens have always been seen as something superficial, destroyers of social cooperation and enemies of the political.

For , it is in these interior spaces where decisions are made, the heterogeneity that underlies the garden city is casually discussed, and the conflicts and negotiations of domestic space are established. These are almost invisible architectures, hidden betweenpalapasand high hedges, conceived from the rhythms of the human body and its daily choreography. In that sense, understands his work in a way that is very similar to performance art that since the 70s has focused on the body and its relationship to its surroundings, as the main site of artistic practice. This is a dynamic architecture, one that is in constant tension, and that prioritizes its performative quality to engage daily transformations and conflicts.

In the architect’s installation, the body is present through its absence, and the performative quality is represented symbolically by water—one of the main actors in the Californian backyard gardens. It is not arbitrary that this exhibition takes its name from David Hockney’s drawing, “Different Kinds of Waters Pouring into a Swimming Pool, Santa Monica,” 1965, made during his first years in the city. Fascinated by the way people in Los Angeles used water to help shape their private gardens into social spaces, the painting shows a series of simple pipes pouring water into a swimming pool that can’t be seen. Although the material quality of water is elusive, its representation reaches a quasi-architectural dimension, without losing its ephemeral and dynamic aspect. As such, each waterfall becomes an exclusive portrait of a common situation. This might read as a metaphor for the everyday stories that the great narratives of urbanism have left out, but these are certainly places where certain forms of citizenship and interaction essential to architectural processes occur.

The exhibitionDifferent Kinds of Water Pouring into a Swimming Poolis accompanied with a small publication by the same name that features an essay by the architect, further discussing the ideas presented in the gallery.

Andrés Jaque and the Office for Political Innovation was founded in Madrid in 2005. This architecture office explores the potential of post-foundational politics and symmetrical approaches to the sociology of technology to rethink architectural practices.

They are authors of reference buildings including Plasencia Clergy House, awarded with the Dionisio Hernández Gil Prize and finalist of the VIII Bienal Española de Arquitectura y Urbanismo; House in Never Never Land, finalist of FAD Awards and Mies van der Rohe European Award. Recently, the Museum of Modern Art of (MoMA) acquiredIKEA Disobedientsas the first architectural performance piece to be included in its collection. In 2012, they presented their interventionPHANTOM. Mies as Rendered Societyat Mies van der Rohe Pavilion in Barcelona. Their work has been featured in Gwangju Biennale, 2011, and the Biennale di Venezia 2010.

Andrés Jaque has been Tessenow Stipendiat in Alfred Toepfer Stiftung FVS, and he is now professor at GSAPP Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University in New York.

Opening: Saturday, September 21 | 7–9 PM 
Artist talk: Saturday, September 21 | 6 pm

Funded in part with generous support from Acción Cultural Española AC/E. The Standard is the official hotel of REDCAT.

Toward Cycle Cities: How Architects Must Make Bikes Their Guiding Inspiration

If Henry Ford were reincarnated as a bike maker, Le Corbusier as an architect of buildings and cities for bikes, and Robert Moses as their bike-loving ally in government, today’s bike plans would be far more ambitious in scope. Ford would be aiming to sell billions of bikes, Corb would be wanting to save the whole world, and, even if it took him a lifetime, Moses would be aiming to leave a permanent mark. 

They would want to give bicycle transport a leg-up, like the leg-up the motorcar received from farmlands being opened for suburban development. So who are our modern-day, bicycle-loving Le Corbusiers? And what, exactly, is their task?

In any era, the preoccupations architects share with planners stem from whatever mode of transportation is on everyone’s minds. The Cooper Union Professor of Architecture, Anthony Vidler, describes the first half of the twentieth-century as a period when architecture derived its authority from machines; if we read Le Corbusier, we see ships and airplanes, but most often cars. 

Designers were fascinated by cars for at least forty years, beginning with Le Corbusier’s 1925 plan to rebuild much of Paris, with towers in a park and sunken freeways. Mies van der Rohe, Walter Gropius, Buckminster Fuller and others designed car-centric buildings, and even some cars themselves, at a time when mass car ownership, freeways and sprawl, were still only fantasies. 

Designers are at a similar juncture with their thinking about cycling today. Today it is mass bicycle transport that is a fantasy, but that doesn’t stop architects – including Ron Arad, West-8, Carlo Ratti, Bill Dunster, NL Architects, Atelier BowWow and Bjarke Ingels – from designing bike-centric buildings, and even some bikes.  

Consider the similarities between Corbu and Bjarke. Le Corbusier was an associate of the carmaker Gabriel Voisin and would take his own Voisin car to photograph it in front of his buildings; Bjarke Ingels is an associate of the designer of Biomega brand bikes, and has made numerous media appearances riding those bikes. Le Corbusier didn’t design his Villa Savoye for cars to be left parked in front, but built a U-turn within the structural volume of the villa, for the enjoyment of driving inside a building; Ingels could have left bikes at the base of his Danish Pavilion at the Shanghai 2010 Expo, but instead built a ride-through spiraling building, with bicycle parking up on the roof.  And when BIG took on the giant 8-House apartment complex on brownfields south of Copenhagen, they also designed a spiraling building that allowed residents to ride from as high as their tenth story penthouse, past all their neighbors, and down to the street on ramped access balconies.

And Bjarke is not the only one. In February 2012 British Prime Minister David Cameron called in architects Richard Rogers and Thomas Heatherwick (along with Bjarke Ingels) to give him their thoughts about cycling. In November the Netherlands Architecture Institute convened an urban bike night with speakers (current author included), an exhibition of bikes, and city bike tours. In 2013, New London Architecture (NLA) organized a fact-finding bike ride from Portland, Oregon to Portland Place, London, after already hosting a conference on cycling in late 2012; they were welcomed with receptions and speaking as they went, culminating with talks at the AIA Center for Architecture in (where I was delighted to be invited to share my own research). 

 The cycling agenda will go forward much quicker now that architects are lending it weight, and would be further advanced had they done so much sooner. In architects’ defense, bicycle transport has looked for a long time like a problem for road engineers. So long as architects labeled their plans with a few bike racks—or bike rooms if that would earn some more LEED points—the traffic engineers would do the actual work, copying proven Dutch road design standards. 

The sands have shifted though. Bikeways are now happening on architects’ turf. While cycle tracks along main streets in metropolises around the world have taken the headlines, a farther-reaching boon to bicycle transport is the ongoing conversion of rail routes, towpaths, docklands and factories into non-vehicular corridors and entertainment-based redevelopment sites.  Former industrial lands are evolving, organically, into territories that Nietzschean supermen like Ford, Corb and Moses would want to be in control of, if they were alive and championing bikes.  

Most cities have redundant industrial sites, interconnected by bulk-haulage routes. Any time a bulk haulage route through a city is turned into a greenway, and housing is built on the old factory sites flanking that greenway, a city gains bike infrastructure serving hundreds of households. Bike infrastructure did not go to people. People moved to bike infrastructure. But that’s how infrastructure works. It leads the way. Freeways were built to the farmlands before houses were built either side. 

Also of interest, are the kinds of bold, sculptural buildings appearing on brownfields.  Like the new EYE Film Institute Netherlands, which shouts to the people of Amsterdam that Royal Dutch Shell’s former testing site is now somewhere to eat out, or better still, buy a luxury flat. On their bikes people come to sites just like this one, in every post industrial city, via the same waterways and rail corridors that originally made them suitable sites for industrial functions. Only now, the railways are bikeways, and the commodities being moved around are these educated minds we all have, in advanced post-industrial nations. 

For established bike nations such as the Netherlands, brownfields are an opportunity for bicycle highways, completely removed from motorized traffic. In non-cycling nations, meanwhile, old rail corridors and canals are the best opportunity yet to build inviting bike routes that won’t cause a political backlash from drivers. In many cities, bike users’ secret networks of underpasses and derelict bridges are already being dusted off and given nice names like the “Midtown Greenway” in Minneapolis, or the “Beltline” in Atlanta.  In other cities they still need exhuming. No matter what, the former industrial lands of our cities are where cycling has the opportunity to become our dominant mode of transportation. 

My last book, Cycle Space, was an invitation to architects to throw their art behind the ascension of cycling. My next will urge architects to take a lead role. As we do with any large project, we should work out and present some proposals. And I don’t mean for bike racks. I mean grand, Corbusian, Moses-level design schemes. All this gives architects a weighty agenda to deal with. It’s an agenda with ramifications for urban mobility, global warming and public health—all the things bicycle transport, and the architects behind it, can give to humanity — and, frankly, must.

Dr. Steven Fleming is an academic at the University of Tasmania, Australia and the author of the book Cycle Space. He consults building industry professionals and government agencies about building for bikes. Find him on the web at cycle-space.com and follow him on Twitter @behoovingmoving 

Pictorial> Bjarke Ingels’ Mantaray Will Soar Over Brooklyn Bridge Park

Bjarke Ingels and Michael Van Valkenburgh are teaming up to design Pier 6 at the southern end of Brooklyn Bridge Park. As AN reported, the pier will feature a pastoral landscape terminated by a triangular viewing pavilion called the Mantaray. The landscape and viewing platform will offer unmatched views of the Manhattan skyline and accommodate […]

—Scape Adaptors: Maria Alessandra Segantini Lecture at Columbia

Maria Alessandra Segantini, principal of C+S Architects will be giving a lecture on Thursday, September 19, 1:00pm at Columbia GSAPP, . The lecture, called -Scape Adaptors, will be introduced by Kenneth Frampton.

More information can be found here.

Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi

Architects: Weiss Manfredi, Thomas Balsley Associates
Location: Center Boulevard, Long Island City, NY, USA
Park Designers: , Weiss/Manfredi
Photographs: Albert Večerka

From the architect. Opening at the end of the summer, Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park is phase one of a larger  master plan that encompasses the transformation of 30 acres of post- industrial waterfront on the  East River in Long Island City and includes the largest affordable housing building project in New  York City since the 1970’s. Surrounded by water on three sides, Hunter’s Point South is a new model  of urban ecology and a laboratory for innovative sustainable design. The park and open space is a  design collaboration between Thomas Balsley Associates and WEISS/MANFREDI with ARUP as the prime  consultant and infrastructure designer.

The site is waterfront and city, gateway and sanctuary, blank slate and pentimento. Design  leverages the site’s industrial heritage and spectacular views to establish a resilient,  multi-layered recreational and cultural destination. Adjacent to a future school and an emerging  residential development of 5,000 permanently affordable units, the park will provide a public front  door and new open spaces for recreation that connect to the surrounding communities. The integrated  design weaves together infrastructure, landscape, and architecture to transform a post-industrial  waterfront  site into new ecological corridors that anticipate the inevitable patterns of flooding  and rising water levels along the East River, transforming Hunter’s Point South into both a new  cultural and ecological paradigm.

Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi © Albert Večerka Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi Floor Plan Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi Floor Plan Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi Site Plan Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi Section Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi Detail Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi Detail Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi Render Hunter’s Point South Waterfront Park / Thomas Balsley Associates + Weiss Manfredi Diagram

Archtober 2013: Architecture and Design Month in NY

The American Institute of Architects New York Chapter and the Center for Architecture have announced new and expanded programs for the third annual edition of Archtober, the official New York City Architecture and Design Month. 

More than 50 participating groups, from the Guggenheim to the Museum of Modern Art have curated more than 150 programs, including exhibits, movies, talks, and walking tours. As Rick Bell, Executive Director of the AIA New York said today during the press preview: “There is something for everyone“.

More information, including some highlights for the festival after the break.

A great building, every day
Among ’s most popular programs are its walking tours and architectural tourism offerings, according to AIA New York Chapter. Most appealing is its “Building of the Day” series, for which architects and other design professionals lead noontime tours of New York’s contemporary buildings and historic sites. Highlights in 2013 include a tour and discussion of the Shake Shack in Madison Square (October 11th) and the UN complex on United Nations Day (October 24th).

In addition, the programs for World Architecture Day on October 7th will also mark the Center for Architecture’s 10th anniversary, with a focus on housing for the next generation. The Architecture and Design Film Festival at Tribeca Cinemas will rank among Archtober’s most popular events, running from October 16th-20th. The Municipal Art Society (MAS) will also host its major annual conference, the MAS Summit for New York City, October 17th-18th.

“Archtober celebrates New York City, a world design capital,” adds AIA New York president, Jill N. Lerner. “With unparalleled architecture, outstanding design professionals, and cutting-edge cultural institutions, we are proud to welcome guests from around the city and around the world to this annual festival.”

Archtober 2013 Highlights

October 1: The exhibition Practical Utopias opens at the Center for Architecture, on global urbanism and recent design in five Asian cities (curator: Jonathan D. Solomon).
October 3: Dekton by Cosentino presents new concepts by seven emerging New York firms with the opening of Surface Innovation: Redefining Boundaries of Interior and Exterior Spaces.
October 7: The future of urban housing is subject of discussion at the Center for Architecture as part of its 10th anniversary and World Architecture Day.
October 16: The Architecture and Design Film Festival opens, at Tribeca Cinemas.

All month: Walking tours around the city of noteworthy architecture, new and old, led by Municipal Art Society of New York, the American Society of Landscape Architects New York Chapter, Regional Plan Association, Hudson Square Connection, Museum of the City of New York, and /Center for Architecture (walking and boat tours).

Other events

First week: Presenting Media Sponsors Dwell and New York Magazine present special talks and tours with City Modern.
October 4: The first of several resiliency events marking the one year anniversary of hurricane Sandy, starting with World Habitat Day 2013 at the United Nations. TEDxNYIT Meta Resiliency follows on October 10th.
October 12: Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum presents National Design Week through the 20th.

Complete calendar of activities can be seen at www.archtober.org/calendar.

BIG Designs Pier 6 Viewing Platform for Brooklyn’s Waterfront

Following the news that Studio V Architecture has been commissioned to convert the 19th century Empire Stores, next to Brooklyn Bridge, into 380,000 square-feet of office, restaurant and commercial space, Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has unveiled designs for “a flowering meadow with seasonal grasses, a sprawling field and a triangular wooden viewing platform” close by.

Bjarke Ingels comments: “The Mantaray is a small public platform at the end of the pier – equally accessible above and below. Its namesake organic slopes and curves have been shaped by concerns for accessibility, safety, shelter, structure – like a manmade reef evolved to accommodate human life.”

The design will provide Brooklyn’s waterfront with an elevated, manta ray-inspired platform on the undeveloped northern corner of Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park. Located near a future beach, originally conceived as part of ’s Blueway plan, the “stepped and undulating” structure will be able to operate as an outdoor auditorium for both small and large-scale events, becoming “a perch from which to look not just over the harbor but also back at Brooklyn.” According to architectural critic Michael Kimmelman, Bjarke Ingels has described the point at which the platform tapers to a 17.5 foot high point at the end of the platform as the design’s “Titanic moment” (referencing a scene from the movie).

“This spectacular structure will provide much-needed shade and a unique space for public events, while offering a dramatic ascent to the water’s edge,” said Regina Myer, President of Brooklyn Bridge Park. “We are so pleased with the collaboration between Michael Van Valkenburgh’s design for the southern portion of the park, and Bjarke Ingels’ design for a breathtaking architectural addition that provides a truly special moment on the waterfront.”

BIG was selected as winner of the project in Spring 2013. The collaboration between MVVA and BIG has evolved into a fruitful partnership where pavilion and landscape design inform and inspire each other. The project won the unanimous approval of the Community Board’s executive committee, as well as from the city’s Public Design Commission.

Architects: Bjarke Ingels Group BIG
Partner In Charge: Bjarke Ingels, Thomas Christoffersen
Project Leader: Iannis Kandyliaris
Project Manager: Martin Voelkle
Team: Ho Kyung Lee, David Spittler, Dennis Harvey, Isshin Morimoto
Collaborators: Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, Knippers Helbig, Tilotson Design Associates, AltieriSeborWieber, Pantocraft, Formactiv
Client: Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy
Area: 560.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Courtesy of BIG

References: New York TimesBIG

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