Archive for August 21st, 2010

August 21, 2010

H2Otel / Powerhouse Company + RAU

01 AERIAL_credits and copyright by Powerhouse Company - MIR lores © Powerhouse Company - MIR

RAU and Powerhouse Company developed H2Otel, a luxurious and completely sustainable hotel for . The project, a prototype for luxury hotel typologies, is shown at the National Design Triennial ‘Why Design Now?’ at the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum in New York.

How to make a hotel tower more sustainable? As a typology, the modern hotel is at odds with the concept of sustainability. Most of the time they are empty and unused, yet they have to be fully accessible, comfortable and pleasurable all the time. Guests usually enter their rooms in the evening. Large glass planes provide stunning views but also heat up the rooms when no one is there. The biggest energy consumer in hotels is usually the cooling system. So, why are the facades of most highrises the same on all sides, despite their different exposure to sunlight? Apart from that, modern hotels are increasingly build according to global formulas in brownfield locations. How do we create a local sense of place while using the particular efficiency if the hotel typology?

Water is an important theme of the H2Otel. Situated alongside the Amstel river, the hotel is overlooking the historic center with its numerous canals, the docks on both banks of the River IJ and, on a clear day, the North Sea. But the name, H2Otel, does not only refer to its scenic views. Water is the building’s main carrier of energy. Through oxy-hydrogen generators water can be used for heating, cooling, cooking and the generation of electricity.

Fluctuating occupancy rates are an obstacle in reaching efficient climate control, especially in large hotels. In order to improve efficiency, an adaptive, sensor-based climate system monitors and controls the indoor climate in real time and for each room individually. It recognizes the number of occupants in a room and adjusts the level of conditioning accordingly. Conditioning is automatically switched off in empty rooms. This climate system helps to save approximately 40% of the building’s energy consumption.

While innovative technology is an important asset in achieving energy efficiency and carbon neutrality, inventive design solutions make a crucial difference in keeping the building’s demand for energy at a minimum in the first place.

Fanning out facade
The design of the hotel unfolds around one basic principle: the fanning out pattern of the facade. The dense arrangement of wooden lamellas on the south-facing facade protects the building from overheating at mid-day and during the warm season. The interval of lamellas gradually decreases towards the northern side, thereby opening the building up to morning and evening sun as well as spectacular panoramic views over the historic center of . The closed facade towards the south does not only block of direct sunlight and heat, but also the noise of the adjacent train tracks. The compact verticality of the southern facade turns the tower into a landmark and gives the area the desired urban density. The openness of the north side, on the other hand, embraces its unique location and connection to the center of the city.

The facade is made of thermally treated softwood. The edges of the wooden facade panels are clad with anodized aluminum, reflecting light into the rooms and creating the ‘golden glow’ known from the paintings of the Dutch masters.
A large atrium intersects the building. At the lower levels, the atrium serves as a spacious and inviting entrance hall. On the upper-floors, the atrium provides a clear, light-flooded routing to the rooms. The floor plans maximize the view of the historic center. As the tower becomes more slender towards the upper levels, a number of roof terraces offer some of the city’s most exciting outdoor retreats.

While the H2Otel might appear to be a high-tech building, almost all of the design principles and technical applications used in the building are already known to the market. If any innovative aspect can be found in the building, it stems from our determination to take responsibility for the long-term impact of our design. To adopt an attitude that seeks to surpass legal and moral expectations rather than breaking technological frontiers.

Architects: RAUPowerhouse Company
Design Team: Thomas , Nanne de Ru, Johanne Borthne, Olen Milholland, Sander Apperlo and Bart Commandeur.
Photographs: and 
Movie: Stefan Prins

02 FACADE  credits and copyright by Powerhouse Company - MIR lores © Powerhouse Company - MIR04 TRAIN credits and copyright by Powerhouse Company - MIR lores © Powerhouse Company - MIR03 091214 hotelroom © Powerhouse Company05 concept concept06 facades south facade south07 facades east facade east08 facades west facade west09 facades north facade north10 ground floor ground floor11 1st floor 1st floor12 7th floor 7th floor13 9th floor 9th floor14 14th floor 14th floor15 16th floor 16th floor16 sections sections

August 21, 2010

Bruce Graham dies at 84; architect of iconic Chicago skyscrapers

He designed the Willis Tower — formerly known as the Sears Tower and still the nation’s tallest skyscraper — and the X-braced John Hancock Center, which became a symbol of the city’s might.

By Blair Kamin , March 9, 2010

Bruce Graham

Bruce Graham, the hard-driving architect of the Willis Tower, once the world’s tallest building, and the John Hancock Center, the X-braced giant that became a symbol of Chicago’s industrial might, has died. He was 84.

Graham died Saturday at his home in Hobe Sound, Fla., from complications of Alzheimer’s disease, said his son, George.

At the peak of his influence, from the 1960s through the 1980s, Graham was the top man at Chicago’s biggest architectural firm, Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, and had the ear of business leaders and politicians.

Besides the Willis (originally Sears) Tower and the Hancock Center, Graham played a major role in designing such landmark structures as the Inland Steel Building.

“He was the Burnham of his generation,” said Chicago historian Franz Schulze, referring to the legendary Chicago urban planner Daniel Burnham.

Reviewing the Sears Tower in 1974, the late Chicago Tribune architecture critic Paul Gapp called the skyscraper “a building whose exterior profiles are a bold, vital and exciting departure from orthodox mediocrity.”

The 110-story, 1,451-foot Sears Tower reigned as the world’s tallest building from 1973 to 1996, when it lost its title to the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The Chicago skyscraper, which was renamed last year for a British insurance brokerage, remains the nation’s tallest.

Graham designed buildings across the nation and world. Yet his most profound influence came in Chicago.

Born Dec. 1, 1925, in Colombia, Graham was the son of a Canadian-born international banker and a Peruvian mother. He grew up in Puerto Rico. Spanish was his first language.

Graham came to the United States as a student in the 1940s. He served in the U.S. Navy and earned his bachelor in architecture from the University of Pennsylvania in 1948.

Graham did his apprenticeship for Chicago architects Holabird, Root and Burgeeat, then left for the up-and-coming firm of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, where he had a long-running feud with architect Walter Netsch.

“Bruce Graham is very tough,” Netsch told the Tribune in 1981. “Seldom do you find a good guy who is a great architect.”

Graham’s greatest achievement came in 1970 with the completion of the mixed-use Hancock Center.

Unlike earlier skyscrapers, in which an internal cage of steel carried most of the load, the Hancock’s exterior columns, beams and X-shaped braces formed a rigid tube that did most of the heavy lifting. The arrangement was economical, and the X-braces offered an instantly recognizable skyline image, silencing detractors who had likened the Hancock to an oil derrick.

The Sears Tower offered an even taller variation on the tube theme, consisting of nine interlocked tubes. The tower was built for Chicago-based retailer Sears, Roebuck and Co., which originally had wanted a building of just 60 stories.

As time passed, Sears’ luster dimmed. The Sears Merchandise Group left the tower in 1992 for Hoffman Estates.

Graham’s survivors include three children, George of New York City, Lisa Graham Langlade-Demoyen of Paris, and Mara Graham Dworsky of Altadena, Calif.; his sister, Margaret Graham Lewis of Gibson Island, Md.; and six grandchildren.,0,1760401.story

August 21, 2010

Lever House by Gordon Bunshaft_SOM | 1951-1952

lever1 ©

The Lever House by Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill was one of the first  International style office buildings in the United States. Located in midtown Manhattan, it was originally the American corporate headquarters of the soap company Lever Brothers. Built between 1951-1952, the Lever House extends 24 stories in height right across from Mies van der Rohe’s Seagram Building, and stands as its own perfect  box.The design of the Lever House offsets the tall office tower from the horizontal base. The horizontal base is lifted off of the ground plane by pilotis except for a small enclosed portion, providing a public plaza underneath and a threshold between the exterior and interior of the building. Here, the ground floor has space for displays, waiting visitors, an auditorium, and a demonstration kitchen.The entire base that is raised up is the second (and largest) floor of the building. Extending horizontally towards the city, this floor contained the employee’s lounge, medical suite, and general office facilities, and the third floor was the location of the employee’s cafeteria and a terrace. The rest of the floors rising up the building contained offices, and a penthouse suite was located on the twenty first floor. The last three floors of the building contained the mechanical spaces, which on the exterior were opaque, giving a contrast and end to the rest of the tower that was covered in .One of the most important elements of the Lever House is its  which is made of blue-green heat-resistant  and stainless steel. Its design had both an economical and aesthetic purpose. Since it was the headquarters of a soap business, the use of an all- facade would make the building easy to clean as well as maintain its glimmer on the skyline. A system was created with a rooftop window-washing gondola that was able to move on tracks to clean the. The  is also completely sealed without operable windows to prevent the passage of dirt from the city into the building, and the heat-resistant  helped reduce cooling costs.The building, although designated a landmark in 1982 by the  City Landmarks Preservation Commission, was in need of a restoration by this time due to water seeping into the building and the breaking of the  panels. By the mid-1990’s only one percent of the original remained. In 1998 Unilever, the original company of the Lever Brothers, only remained on the top floors of the Lever Building when RFR Holding LLC bought the building. They hired Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill once again to restore the  with state-of-the-art solutions in modern wall technology while still keeping the building’s original appearance which was all completed by 2001.Winning numerous awards, including the AIA First Honor Award, the AIA National 25 Year Award, and the Architectural League of  Gold Medal, the Lever House is a City landmark that has mesmerized people through the years with its modern style that has yet to fade into the past.

emilioguerra1 © Emilio Guerraemilioguerra2 © Emilio Guerrasom7 © SOMsom2 © SOMsom1 © SOMsom6 © SOMhistelevation © Columbia Universityconstruction © Columbia Universitysom5 © SOMsom8 © SOMelevation © Columbia Universitysection © Columbia Universitysom4 © SOMsom3 © SOM

August 21, 2010

Willis Tower (Sears Tower) by Bruce Graham

som1 © SOM

Towering over the windy city of , the Willis Tower (formerly known as Sears Tower) was once the tallest building in the world upon its completion in 1973. Sears, Roebuck, & Company commissioned Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill  to design an office building that would house their headquarters and the many offices they had scattered around  in one building. The design also had to incorporate extra office space for the anticipated future growth of the company.

More on the Willis Tower after the break.The building is 108 stories tall, rising 1,450 feet above the city. The height of the building is due to spacial needs. The company analyzed their current spacial needs, as well as the space needed for growth up to the year 2003 being as meticulous as determining the number of desks for personnel.SOM proposed a superstructure of nine interlocking tubes of varying heights, divided in 75′ x 75′ squares that are separate buildings joined together as one. The different heights allow for the building to step back, meeting setback regulations and creating the iconic staggering effect that the building is known for. The “bundled-tube” configuration was innovated by engineer Fazlur R. Khan from SOM, and these nine tubes formed the skyscraper’s basic structure. This system allowed for large open office spaces on the lower levels (where the Sears offices would be located) and smaller floors as the building soared in height with unobstructed views of the city. The structure system also saved ten million dollars in  costs. Aluminum cladding was used for the structure, and the entire rest of the building was clad in bronze-tinted vision  panels which allowed the skyscraper to receive ample natural lighting and views from every exterior wall. Completing the tower at the peak of its height are antennas that allow for local radio and television broadcasts.The 103rd floor of the tower is the location of the famous skydeck , which is visited by 1.3 million tourists a year. In just 60 seconds tourists can soar to the skydeck to experience the swaying of the skyscraper on a windy day and as of 2009, look at the city beneath their feet from boxes that protrude from the deck.The growth of Sears, Roebuck, & Company did not occur as expected through the years, and in 2009 insurance broker Willis Group Holdings, Ltd. leased three floors of the tower and retained the naming rights. The name of the skyscraper then changed to Willis Tower and is valid for fifteen years.Today the Willis Tower still remains the tallest building in the United States and the fifth tallest free-standing structure in the world. Although Sears, Roebuck, & Co. did not have much success for their company inside the walls of the tower, there is no doubt that their vision and SOM’s creation is still a marvel on the  skyline. “Sears Tower was the last supertall building constructed during the Internation architecture period, and SOM’s interpretation of the style is remarkably bold and awe-inspiring.”

skydeckchicago © Flickr - User: skydeckchicagoskc2 © Flickr - User: skydeckchicagoiamhydrogen © Flickr - User: iamhydrogenskc1 © Flickr - User: skydeckchicagosom2 © SOMsom7 © SOMsom3 © SOMsom4 © SOMsom6 © SOMskc3 © Flickr - User: skydeckchicagoledge © Flickr - User: skydeckchicagoskc4 © Flickr - User: skydeckchicagosom5 © SOMinterior1 © Flickr - User: skydeckchicagointerior2 © Flickr - User: skydeckchicagosmalloffice 4th Floor - Small Size Office Spacefloorplan2 50th Floor - Medium Size Office Space92medium 92nd Floor - Medium Size Office Spacelargeoffice 40th - Large Size Office Space

August 21, 2010

John Hancock Center by Bruce Graham

9somezrastolleresto SOM - Ezra Stoller © Esto

Architect: Bruce Graham of Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill
Location: Chicago, , USA
Structural Engineer: Fazlur Khan
Project Area: 2,800,000 square feet
Site Area: 104,000 square feet
Photographs: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP and on FlickrhanneorlaMichael Davis Photography, and theta_sigma
References: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP

Once the tallest building in the world outside of New York when it was completed in 1970, the John Hancock Center stands along with the Willis (Sears) Tower and Mies’ 860-880 Lake Shore Drive residences as another glimmering landmark of the Chicago skyline. The 100-story skyscraper was designed by architect Bruce Graham and structural engineer Fazlur Khan ofSkidmore, Owings, & Merrill and soars 1, 127-feet into the sky. It was the world’s first mixed-use high-rise, containing offices, restaurants, and the third highest residence in the world with approximately 700 condominiums.

More on the John Hancock Center after the break.

Construction on the tower began in 1965. Due to the high winds in Chicago, one of the main factors that had to be taken into consideration was using a secure structure for the building that would minimize movement on windy days. The structure consists of a tubular system that strengthens the building against wind and earthquakes. The famous cross-bracing on the exterior provides security against horizontal movement while opening up the interior of the building with more uninterrupted floor space. Although the X-bracing is massive and slightly blocks views from the interior, it is the Hancock Building’s signature exterior feature and is structurally sound.

Visitors are welcomed from ground level with an elliptical plaza that steps down towards the entrances of restaurants and has its own 12-foot waterfall. On the ground floor there is also a lobby that was redecorated in 1995 with textured limestone surfaces.

On the 95th story is the John Hancock Observatory with Chicago’s only open-air SkyWalk that was built with  casing approved by NASA. Popular for tourists, the observatory competes with Willis Tower’s Skydeck, offering views of the city from every angle, including gorgeous shots of Lake Michigan and on a clear day the sights of four other states. Halfway up the building on the 44th floor also lies America’s highest swimming pool. With both of these features, along with an astonishing height of 1,506-feet when measured to the top of its two identical antennas, the John Hancock Center is the quintessential model of a brilliantly engineered skyscraper that adds beauty through its symmetry to the skyline, making it one of Chicago’s finest works of architecture.

3somjohnmillerhedrichblessing SOM - Jon Miller © Hedrich Blessing

hanneorla2 © Flickr - User: hanneorla

1somezrastoller SOM - Ezra Stoller © Esto

hanneorla1 © Flickr - User: hanneorla

2somtimothyhursley SOM - © Timothy Hursleytheta_sigma2 © Flickr - User: theta_sigma

hanneorla3 © Flickr - User: hanneorla

4somezrastolleresto SOM - Ezra Stoller © Esto

section Section5somezrastolleresto SOM - Ezra Stoller © Esto

6somezrastolleresto SOM - Ezra Stoller © Esto

7somezrastolleresto SOM - Ezra Stoller © Esto

slydeckmichaeldavis © Michael Davis Photography as seen on Flickr

plan Plan

8somezrastolleresto SOM - Ezra Stoller © Esto

August 21, 2010

150-Meter Outdoor Infinity Pool

View across Marina Bay. Photo by Timothy Hursley

View from DNA Bridge. Photo by Timothy Hursley

150-Meter Outdoor Infinity Pool // Marina Bay Sands
text by Marcia Argyriades for Yatzer

Luxury hotel, Marina Bay Sands recently opened the doors of its microcosm to the public and has already wowed tourists with its unique and luxurious design.

The Marina Bay Sands hotel is located in Singapore has been designed with one goal in mind, to be the leading business, leisure and entertainment destination in Asia. It holds the title of the most expensive hotel built till this day, as its investment by the Las Vegas Sands Corporation reaches $5 billion. The Marina Bay Sands hotel is a mixed-use integrated resort with 2,560-roomsthree 55-storey towers, a 150-meters infinity pool on top of the towers, anindoor canal, a museum shaped like a lotus flower, the best shopping mall in Asia and world-class celebrity chef restaurants.  Furthermore, it includes theatres, an outdoor event plaza, a convention center and a casino with private gaming rooms for premium players.

Casino. Photo by Timothy Hursley

Marina Bay Sands has been designed by Boston-based internationally renowned architect Moshe Safdie.  Moshe Safdie was invited by the Las Vegas Sands Corporation to develop a competitive design proposal for Marina Bay which would be presented to the Government of Singapore.  According to Safdieour challenge was to create a vital public place at the district-urban scale, in other words, to address the issue of mega scale and invent an urban landscape that would work at the human scale.”  The hotel’s design could easily resemble a wicket, where three cricket stumps (vertical posts) support two bails; in this case the bails are resembled by the boat shaped deck which tops the tree stumps.

View of Hotel and SkyPark from Roof of the Convention Center. Photo by Timothy Hursley

However, according to Safdie the development is inspired by great ancient cities that were ordered around a vital public thoroughfare, Marina Bay Sands is organized around two principal axes that cross the district and give it a sense of orientation placing emphasis on the pedestrian street as the focus of civic life.  In other words, the design “weaves” the components of an intricate program into a dynamic urban crossroad for a vibrant city life!

View from “Gardens by the Bay.” Photo by Timothy Hursley

Render of Sands Skypark by Safdie Architects. Courtesy of Marina Bay Sands.

swimmers at Skypark // picture found at flickr

photo (c) Reuters // found at Flickr

The total surface area of the three 55-storey hotel towers totals 929,000 square meters (10 million square-feet).  The three distinct hotel towers anchor the district and are connected at the top by the 1 hectare (2.5- acre) Sands SkyPark where one can relax in the tranquility of a tropical garden in the sky, with exclusive access to the 150-meter outdoor infinity pool and observation deck at the Sands SkyPark one of the world’s highest public cantilevers, for a breathtaking, magnificent view of Singapore and beyond.  SkyPark is an engineering wonder as it is located 200 meters (656 feet) above the sea, and if one is to consider the structural load which the three towers carry it is just amazing.  The SkyPark spans from tower to tower and cantilevers 66.5 meters (213 feet) beyond.  Shielded from the winds and lavishly planted with hundreds of trees, the SkyPark celebrates the notion of the Garden City that has been the underpinning of Singapore’s urban design strategy.

photo by Richard Cawood // found at Flickr

photo by Guan Lim // found at Flickr

View from Water. Photo by Timothy Hursley

Equal importance was given to landscape architecture by, a sequence of layered gardens which provide sufficient green space throughout Marina Bay Sands.  The gardens extend to a tropical garden landscape from Marina City Park towards the Bayfront. The architectural landscaping design has created an arrangement which strengthens urban connections with the resort’s surroundings and every level of the area has green space that is accessible to the public. Large pedestrian walkways open to tropical plantings and water views, creating a relaxing aura for the public to enjoy.  Nearly fifty percent of the roofs of the hotel, convention center, shopping mall, and casino complex are planted with trees and gardens which thus create a sustainably designed building which assists the atmosphere of the city with its landscape architecture.

Ned Kahn, Wind Arbor, 2010. Courtesy of Marina Bay Sands

Furthermore, Moshe Safdie selected five international artists to create eight monumental large-scale public art installations for Marina Bay Sands.  The artists worked closely with Safdie to ensure that the site-specific commissions complement the architecture and energize the public spaces.  The artists who created works for Marina Bay Sands are: Antony Gormley // Drift, Chongbin Zheng // Rising Forest, James Carpenter // Blue Reflection Facade with Light Entry Passage, Ned Kahn // Wind Arbor, Rain Oculus and Tipping Wall, and the late Sol LeWitt // Wall Drawing #917, Arcs and Circles, and Wall Drawing #915, Arcs, Circle and Irregular bands.

Sol Lewitt (1928-2007), Arcs, Circle and Irregular Bands, 1999. Courtesy of Marina Bay Sands

All in all, the large art installations complement and integrate well with the architecture and the surrounding environment.
Despite the few months of operation, Marina Bay Sands is a building project which has created its own microcosm of a city within the development.  Marina Bay Sands seems to make a bold statement in Singapore’s culture, and contemporary life.  Furthermore, it is surely an architectural and structural engineering achievement which sets the bar high as it brings pioneering techniques for the engineering sector.

Antony Gormley, Drift, 2009. Courtesy of Marina Bay Sands
Marina Bay Sands Consulting Team:
Architect: Moshe Safdie
Executive Architect: Aedas, Pte Ltd
Structural Engineers: Arup
Landscape Architects: Peter Walker & Partners
Investment Group: Las Vegas Sands Corporation

View from Water. Photo by Timothy Hursley

Safdie Architects is an international architectural and urban planning practice founded and led by Israeli architect Moshe Safdie. Deeply committed to the creation of architecture that responds to local and regional characteristics of landscape, climate, cultural heritage, and contemporary life, Safdie is recognized for creating welcoming buildings and public spaces that contribute in meaningful ways to their setting while catalyzing a vibrant public life.

Bringing together superior design, technical, and management skills, the firm is adept at working internationally in close collaboration with local and associate architects to develop innovative designs and see complex, large-scale projects to completion.
Projects by Safdie Architects are distinguished by their geographic and cultural diversity and represent many building types and scales. The firm has completed cultural, educational, and civic institutions such as museums, performing arts centers, libraries, religious facilities, and academic campuses; neighborhoods, residential developments and public parks; mixed-use urban centers and airports; and master plans for existing communities and entirely new cities, among other projects.

Advocating the concept of “inherent buildability,” Safdie Architects proposes an architecture that is not about building the impossible but about building what makes sense for a specific program and for a particular setting. Committed to using resources efficiently while advancing a client’s goals, the firm employs a full range of building tools and cutting-edge technologies to ensure efficiency and ease of construction.

Born in Haifa, Israel, in 1938, Safdie moved to Canada with his family in 1953. He graduated from McGill University in 1961 with a degree in architecture. After apprenticing with Louis I. Kahn in Philadelphia, Safdie returned to Montreal to oversee the master plan for the 1967 World Exhibition. In 1964 he established his own firm to realize Habitat ’67, an adaptation of his thesis at McGill, which was the central feature of the World’s Fair and a groundbreaking design in the history of architecture.

Evening View. Photo by Timothy Hursley

Hotel Towers and SkyPark. Photo by Timothy Hursley


August 21, 2010

Oslo Opera House by Snøhetta

photo ©  Jiri Havran

Norwegian National Opera & Ballet, Oslo by Snøhetta
The European Commission and the Fundació Mies van der Rohe announced on the 29th of April that the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet, Oslo, Norway by Snøhetta is the winner of the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award 2009.

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann
This landmark building by Snøhetta, who also designed the new Library of Alexandria (2002), is the largest cultural centre built in Norway in 700 years. It sloping stone roof – made up of 36,000 fitted pieces – rises up from the fjord; allowing members of the public, residents and opera goers alike, to walk over the building, developing a relationship with the public structure. Integral to the 1,000-room interior, which is largely lined with crafted woodwork (using the traditions of Norwegian boat builders), are a number of art commissions interwoven into the structural fabric, including a cloakroom, a collaboration with their 2007 Serpentine Pavilion collaborator Olafur Eliasson. There will be a press visit to the winning building on 7 May 2009 and a special granting ceremony at the Mies van der Rohe Pavilion in Barcelona on 28 May 2009.

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann
A travelling exhibition and catalogue featuring the works chosen by the Jury  will be presented in September this year.
The European Commissioner for Education, Training, Culture and Youth, Ján Figel’ said : “Architecture is a highly visible showcase of creativity and innovation, and today’s prize winners show the benefits of investing in European architectural talent, in our creativity and innovation. This is all the more relevant this year, as stimulating new ideas and highlighting entrepreneurial efforts are key parts of the European Year of Creativity and Innovation 2009”.

The Jury, chaired by Francis Rambert includes: Ole Bouman, Irena Fialová, Fulvio Irace, Luis M. Mansilla, Carme Pinós and Vasa J. Perović. Francis Rambert, Chair of the Jury said:

“The Norwegian National Opera and Ballet in Oslo is more than just a building. It is first an urban space, a gift to the city. The building can be considered a catalyst of all the energies of the city and is emblematic of the regeneration of its urban tissue.”

Tarald Lundevall, project architect for Snøhetta said: “Snøhetta considers the Mies van der Rohe Award among the worlds most prestigious architectural acknowledgements. We are greatly honoured to receive this prize for the Norwegian National Opera and Ballet.”

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann
The EU Culture Programme also funds the European Border Breakers Awards, the European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage/Europa Nostra Awards, which will be presented in Taormina (Sicily, Italy) on 5 June 2009, and the forthcoming European Union Prize for Literature to be awarded in September 2009.

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann

Norwegian National Opera & Ballet
Oslo, Norway
SNØHETTA/ Kjetil Trædal Thorsen, Tarald Lundevall, Craig Dykers
The new building for the opera and ballet is the first element in the transformation of the bay area of Oslo with the objective of reconnecting the city with its waterfront. In addition to providing the city with an opera and ballet house of the highest international standards, the marble-clad roofscape is both a new civic landmark as well as an architectural landscape that is open to the public. The interior is composed of a sequence of differentiated spaces characterised by carefully chosen materials and the integration of the works of several artists.
Kjetil Trædal Thorsen (born 1958 in Haugesund, Norway, diploma: Technische Universität Graz) , Tarald Lundevall (born 1948 in Oslo, diploma: Arkitektur og designhøgskolen i Oslo) and Craig Dykers (born 1961 in Frankfurt, diploma: University of Texas at Austin) are partners and directors of Snøhetta, an architectural practice established in 1989 in Oslo. Their major works include the Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Alexandria, Egypt; the Norwegian Embassy in Berlin and the INMED Institute of Neurobiology in Marseilles, France.

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann

Architect: Snøhetta AS
Landscape Architect: Snøhetta AS
Interior Architect: Snøhetta AS

Architectural competition phase:
Project Architects: Craig Dykers, Tarald Lundevall, Kjetil Trædal Thorsen
Architects: Martin Dietrichson, Ibrahim El Hayawan, Chandani Ratnawira, Harriet Rikheim, Marianne Sætre
Landscape architects: Snøhetta AS, Ragnhild Momrak
Advisors: Inger Buresund, Axel Hellstenius, Henrik Hellstenius, Peder Istad, Jorunn Sannes
Theatre Consultants: Theatre Projects Consultants Ltd.

Planning and building phase:

Project manager: Tarald Lundevall
Assistant management: Sigrun Aunan, Craig Dykers, Simon Ewings
Designleader: Kjetil Trædal Thorsen
Groupleaders: Rune Grasdal, Tom Holtmann, Elaine Molinar, Kari Stensrød, Øystein Tveter
Team architects: Anne-Cecilie Haug, Ibrahim El Hayawan, Tine Hegli, Jette Hopp, Zenul Khan, Frank Kristiansen, Cecilia Landmark, Camilla Moneta, Aase Kari Mortensen, Frank Nodland, Andreas Nygaard, Michael Pedersen, Harriet Rikheim, Margit Tidemann Ruud, Marianne Sætre, Knut Tronstad, Tae Young Yoon.
Team landscape architects: Ragnhild Momrak, Andreas Nypan
Team interior architects: Bjørg Aabø, Christina Sletner

If you are interested to read more about the OPERAHOUSE

download the PDF with all the project’s details HERE

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Gerald Zugmann

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

photo ©  Jiri Havran

The winner of the Prize was selected from a shortlist of five finalists:
• Zenith Music Hall, Strasbourg (France) by Studio Fuksas/ Massimiliano & Doriana Fuksas
• Luigi Bocconi University, Milan (Italy) by Grafton Architects/ Shelley McNamara, Yvonne Farrell
• Norwegian National Opera & Ballet, Oslo (Norway) by Snøhetta/ Kjetil Trædal Thorsen, Tarald Lundevall, Craig Dykers
• Multimodal Centre – Nice Tramway, Nice (France) by Atelier Marc Barani
• Libr ary, Senior Citizens’ Centre and Interior Courtyard, Barcelona (Spain) by RCR Arquitectes

The finalists were selected from 340 projects proposed by the Architects’ Council of Europe (ACE) member associations, other national architectural associations, the group of Experts and the Advisory Committee.


MIES ARCH,  Snøhetta

August 21, 2010

Why Tarald Lundevall won Mies Van der Rohe Award 2009?

August 21, 2010

Henning Larsen

Henning  Larsen

August 21, 2010

Isn’t that great?

Sydporten (the South Gateway) designed by Henning Larsen Architects will be exhibited as part of the official Danish contribution to the 12th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia. The exhibition features the city of Copenhagen with the exhibition “Q&A: Urban Questions _ Copenhagen Answers.”