Archive for ‘Civic Bldg’

February 6, 2012

Art Pavillion |c

Concept

The concept of the pavilion is to experiment with a developmental pattern in the evolution of an organism, to let spontaneous forces go without mediation. This results into an organic structure that wraps itself with a protective membrane. The skin (i.e. membrane) reveals life from the skeleton.

The pavilion is now one creature dipped in the real bio mass. The inside glow (i.e. internal lighting) reveals a pulsating organism into the night. The permanent incompletion is the evolutionary change that rejects the idea of a prediction about its form of growth

Technical – wood frame & reactive skin

The structure of the pavilion is a plywood frame assembled into ribs-like elements. The base structure of the pavilion is a 200mm x 400mm perpendicular grid. Ribs depth & thickness are integral and adjustable parameters of the model and adjust according to constrains (evolutionary change).

Each rib is a flat panel on a vertical plane (world z axis). All elements are planar & parallel on each x or y axis. Therefore all ribs intersect perpendicularly. Each element is given a unique id. The structure can be sent straight to digital production and cnc technology with all connections also cnc routed. Once all the pieces are cut, units can be preassembled in factory.

The reactive skin is a high-tech teflon membrane protecting the structure designed to react to changing light conditions. Its primary element is a honeycomb cell that optimises wrapping capabilities and semi-rigidity. It is flexible, wraps like a cloth, and can be folded.”

http://www.archdaily.com/21947/art-pavillion-cre8-architecture/

January 23, 2012

Celtic Museum | kadawittfeldarchitektur

Architects: kadawittfeldarchitektur
Location: 
Project Managers: Oliver Venghaus (architecture), Ben Beckers (exhibition design)
Client: Federal State of Hessen represented by HMWK and HBM
Project Year: 2011
Project Area: 2,190 sqm (GFA)
Photographs: Werner Huthmacher

This project is a museum for Celtic art, and is in direct proximity to a historic burial mound. Similar to an excavated archaeological find, the metal body of the museum juts out from the landscape and forms a counterpart to the burial mound. More of a mysterious object itself rather than architecture, the museum should be stumbled upon by its visitors as a marker of landscape discovery.

The Celtic Museum is a clearly contoured and distinct volume, blending in with the surrounding landscape. Partly inserted into the slope, it projects itself towards the burial mound. Its vital function as an element of the landscape, the museum building amplifies the burial mound’s leading role. Underneath the main volume, one finds the foyer and the café and adjoining rooms as well. Here begins and ends the exploration of the museum’s archaeological trail.

A staircase-ramp guides the visitor into the exhibition. In the end, one finds a panoramic window, offering an impressive view of the burial mound, incorporating it into the exhibition itself. The roof acts also as an observation deck onto the scenic landscape and the skies above – so that the surroundings can be “discovered.”

http://www.archdaily.com/173936/celtic-museum-kadawittfeldarchitektur/

January 2, 2012

National Automobile m\Museum Turin | Zucchi & Partners


‘national automobile museum, turin’ by cino zucchi architetti with recchi engineering and proger, turin, italy
image © filippo poli

photographer filippo poli has sent us images of the recently completed ‘national automobile museum’ in turin, italy.
looking to become a driving force in the urban renewal of the city’s southeast side, the building, designed by
cino zucchi architetti with recchi engineering and proger, sees the expansion and renovation of the existing
amedeo albertini-designed museum, originally constructed in 1960. at once respecting history, place and modernity,
the redesign seamlessly and delicately bridges the significant components together, creating a new museum that is in
line with some of europe’s most successful contemporary structures.


view from street
image © filippo poli

expressed as an unraveling and fluid form, the building features a glass and steel skin that enwraps and redefines the brutal
volumes and hard symmetry of the existing facility. a new wing on the west side of the complex is articulated to respond to
both the users and the encompassing community. reflective and modern, the design lends a sense of depth and interest
to an area once seen as one of the most important areas of contemporary turin.


new side elevation
image © filippo poli

underlining the existing horizontal lines, the new ground floor has a number of relational spaces that accommodate a series of
exhibition halls, conference and educational facilities and binary functions. symbolic of the original circular exhibition zones,
the new lobby – once an outdoor courtyard – is conceived as an irregularly shaped dominant core, contoured and expansive,
and clad in panels of perforated steel. located at the heart of the structure, the lobby and exhibition hall connects the new museum
with the old, becoming a tool for orientation and way-finding.


detail of perforated exterior cladding
image © filippo poli


the new lobby which was once a courtyard
image © filippo poli


lobby and exhibition hall
image © filippo poli


panels of contoured steel enclose the lobby
image © filippo poli


night view of back side
image © filippo poli


aerial view at night
image © filippo poli


site plan
image courtesy of cino zucchi architetti 


floor plan / level 0
image courtesy of cino zucchi architetti 


floor plan / level 1
image courtesy of cino zucchi architetti


elevation
image courtesy of cino zucchi architetti 


facade detail
image courtesy of cino zucchi architetti 

http://www.designboom.com/weblog/cat/9/view/15024/zucchi-partners-national-automobile-museum-turin.html

December 31, 2011

First Look: Piano’s Addition to Boston’s Gardner Museum Near Completion

The architect’s turquoise copper complement to the revered institution is set to open next month.

By William Hanley

First Look: Piano’s Addition to Boston’s Gardner Museum Near Completion

Pre-patinated copper cladding wraps much of the new building.
Image © Nic Lehoux

First Look: Piano’s Addition to Boston’s Gardner Museum Near Completion  Fire stairs adorn the green facades.

First Look: Piano’s Addition to Boston’s Gardner Museum Near Completion

A new gallery space features a variable-height ceiling.

First Look: Piano’s Addition to Boston’s Gardner Museum Near Completion

Musicians play on the floor of the box-like performance hall.

First Look: Piano’s Addition to Boston’s Gardner Museum Near Completion

Narrow balconies wrapping the performance space afford views of musicians below as well as other concertgoers.

First Look: Piano’s Addition to Boston’s Gardner Museum Near Completion

Shown under construction, Piano’s addition moves the museum’s main entrance to a side street.

First Look: Piano’s Addition to Boston’s Gardner Museum Near Completion

The original 1903 building’s entrance faces the Fenway.

Six weeks before its scheduled opening, Renzo Piano’s addition to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum has entered the final stages of construction, and on a recent visit it bustled with workers applying finishes in advance of the January 19th debut. Connected to the back of the museum’s original building by a 50-foot glass walkway, the addition only slightly alters the revered Boston institution—a faux-palazzo built in 1903 as a house for the society luminary Isabella Stewart Gardner and her vast and eclectic art collection. But the new structure relieves the original building of ancillary spaces that had been squeezed into it over 70 years as a public museum.

Piano’s 70,000-square-foot addition includes a performing arts space and a gallery, as well as a new entrance, a restaurant, administrative offices, education spaces, conservation labs, a greenhouse, and apartments for the museum’s artist in residence program. The older structure will be primarily devoted to displaying the collection, which includes important work by Rembrandt, Titian, and a who’s who of old masters through Impressionism.

The addition took two years to complete and was result of a $180 million capital campaign that allocated $114 million to construction costs and $46 million for operating costs and the museum’s endowment. Annual attendance is expected to increase by 15 percent to 230,000 visitors.

When it decided to go forward with the project in 2004, the Gardner’s board formed a selection committee, but Piano initially declined to enter the running. “Of everyone we asked, only Rafael Moneo and Piano said no,” says the museum’s director Anne Hawley. The group had compiled a shortlist of prospective designers—including Tokyo-based SANAA, Phoenix’s Will Bruder, and Boston’s own William Rawn—when Piano changed his mind. (According to Hawley, he was persuaded by Raymond Nasher whose eponymous Dallas sculpture center Piano designed.) After a trip to Texas to see the Nasher and the Menil Collection, the committee threw out its list and settled on the Italian architect.

Divided into four primary volumes stitched together by a stair, Piano’s new building reorients the main entrance from the Fenway to Evans Way to the east. It is clad in glass and ridged plates of pre-patinated copper. The turquoise finish, mottled in places with greens and yellows, was intended to echo the copper details found on bay windows throughout Boston’s historic neighborhoods. Piano placed the fire stairs on the building’s exterior. Attached by a suspended rod system, the catwalks create a pattern of silver ribbons across the greenish background.

One glazed section of the facade encloses a new 1,500-square-foot gallery. The white box rises a dramatic 36 feet and, in a reference to the courtyard in the original building, is covered by Piano’s signature top lighting. A scrim stretches across an armature that can be raised and lowered by a mechanical system, allowing the ceiling height to be adjusted from the full 36 feet down to 24 or 12 feet depending on curatorial needs. “It has the flexibility to go from a wide-open, slightly outrageous contemporary space to an intimate gallery,” says director of operations Jim Labeck.

The largest of the four new volumes is a concrete cube housing the performing arts space. A skylight, 42 feet overhead, allows scrim-filtered daylight into the room. Piano paneled the hall in perforated white oak, and has hung curtains between the wood and concrete to allow the acoustics of the space to be adjusted for different performances. Acoustician Yasuhisa Toyota, who worked with Frank Gehry on the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and the New World Symphony in Miami, consulted on the scheme.

There is no stage in the hall, which seats 296. Instead, performers play in the center of the cube’s floor with rows of seating surrounding them. Three levels of galleries above contain one row of seating each. Beveled glass balustrades with wooden railings, allow unusual sight lines from the upper levels down to the musicians below—and voyeuristic glances at fellow concert-goers straight across the balcony.

The Gardner’s tapestry room, which for decades had hosted concerts and other events, has been restored with furnishings organized according to archival photos. Layers of grime have been cleaned from the tiled floor. Other galleries in the original building still show some deterioration from years of public use. A jewel box of art and architectural elements from Europe and Asia, all installed to specifications set out in Gardner’s will, the museum is also a major cultural touchstone for the city. The theft of 13 works in 1990 was regarded as a public tragedy, and the museum met resistance from some community groups over the expansion.

The Gardener tore down a 1908 carriage house and a greenhouse added later to make room for the Piano wing, in addition to moving a sarcophagus from its original location, a process that required approval from the Massachusetts State Supreme Court. “As a matter of Gardner’s will, we had to go to court,” says Hawley. “But a small community group without an immediate connection to the museum also took us on.” The museum persevered, and at the end of the day, Hawley feels the addition crucially eases the strain on the revered palazzo. “It was impossible to deal with the wear and tear—now we can really preserve the original building.”

http://archrecord.construction.com/news/2011/12/Gardner-Museum.asp

September 25, 2011

London River Park | Gensler

Gensler releases renewed renderings of floating civic platform on The Thames

Global design studio Gensler has just released these illustrative images of its concept for the kilometre-long floating River Walk on the north bank of the River Thames in England’s capital. Working with financiers Venus Group of Singapore and construction/consultancy firm Mace, Gensler has been finalising its design over the past six months and submitted a planning application in August 2011.

In May Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London stated that: “The sheer beauty and design brilliance of this structure will provide yet another amazing and unique attraction for the capital.” If planning is approved the 12m wide platform will be completed in time for next summer’s London 2012 Olympic Games and will remain post-event as a lasting legacy for the city.

Loosely comparable to the highly successful Highline in New York, Gensler’s London River Walk will form a continuous walkway running parallel to the existing mismatched streets along the river frontage and include a number of event spaces and a swimming pool.

http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.projectview&upload_id=17530

August 20, 2011

Surrey City Centre Library | Bing Thom Architects

The new  City Centre Library, designed by Vancouver-based Bing Thom Architects(BTA), is set to open on September 24, 2011. This new building marks the next phase of a major civic investment in the area that will continue the transformation of downtown Surrey, from sprawling suburb to the Region’s next great downtown, which began with BTA’s Central City project. Creating dynamic environments that look to the future of Surrey is nothing new to BTA. Nearly a decade ago, the firm designed the incredibly vibrant Central City, which sits down the street from the new Surrey Library. The architectural and social innovation evident at Central City—a fusion of office space, a shopping center and a university—is further exemplified in BTA’s library design.

Architect: Bing Thom Architects Inc.
Location: 10350 University Drive, Surrey, , Canada
Project Team: Bing Thom, Michael Heeney, Venelin Kokalov, Ling Meng, Francis Yan, John Camfield, Shinobu Homma, Robert Sandilands, Marcos Hui, Lisa Potopsingh, Harald Merk, Berit Wooge, Dan Du, Michael Motlagh, Nicole Hu
Landscape Architect: Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg
Project Year: 2011
Project Area: 82,000 sqf
Photographs: Courtesy of Bing Thom Architects

Structural Engineer: Fast + Epp
Mechanical Engineer: AME Consulting Group
Electrical Engineer: Applied Engineering Solutions
Civil Engineer: CitiWest Consulting Ltd.
Geotechnical: Trow Consulting Engineers Ltd. (now exp Services
Inc.)
Building Code: LMDG Building Code Consultants
Traffic: Bunt & Associates
Quantity Surveying/Costing: LEC Quantity Surveying Inc.
Building Envelope: Morrison Hershfield
Acoustic: Brown & Strachan
General Contractor: Dominion Fairmile Construction Ltd. (now Stuart
Olson Dominion)
Project Manager: Turnbull Construction Services Ltd.

The Design of a 21st-Century Library
BTA understands that the role of the library is changing and that the book collection is no longer the central focus. With advances in easily available electronic information and inter-library loans, providing the appropriate spaces for evolving library activities is now the priority. These activities range from the traditional research and education roles, to the need for libraries to become a point of connection and even a gathering place in the community. As a result, BTA’s design includes a diverse mixture of large interconnected “high” spaces with generous natural light and “low” more intimate spaces to accommodate the book stacks and individual activities like studying and writing. These spaces are modulated throughout the complex, and are revealed as patrons explore the building. For instance, one of the most dramatic spaces is the “living room,” a casual reading area adjacent to massive windows overlooking a future public plaza to the east, is in a double height space that is not apparent until you reach the third floor. In all cases, the spaces have been deliberately kept informal to make the library feel like an extension of the patron’s home. As Thom says, “The design evolves out of the need to provide a space for reading, studying, and above all, gathering as a community. This building is very flexible and will accommodate all of these purposes, but does so in a way that will intrigue and entice the users through the building.”

The library encourages the gathering of diverse groups of people from the surrounding community. Its design features large windows, a welcoming entrance with clear sight lines that allow visitors to quickly orient themselves in the space, and an upward winding central atrium and two skylights that allow natural light into the building. The form of the building is inspired by the curvature of the adjacent University Drive, with an added dynamism provided by outward-sloping walls. While seemingly complex, by utilizing state of the art computer modeling software, the architects were able to ensure that the concrete formwork was highly efficient and easy to construct. The exterior concrete structure is carefully detailed as the final surface, thereby eliminating the need for expensive building cladding. Designed to LEED standards, the outward sloped walls also provide solar shading.

Using 21st-Century Technology, including Social Media, as a Design Tool
The $36 million library project was funded as part of Canada’s Federal Infrastructure program, with costs shared by the federal, provincial and municipal governments. Because of the time constraints placed on these federally funded projects, the firm went head-first into the use of social media to circumvent the standard (and lengthy) community consultation process. The end result is a dynamic design—one that recognizes and supports the changing role of libraries and that incorporates the needs of the client and the ideas of the community – but that also is coming in on time and on budget.

BTA’s social media ingenuity was born out of the need to compensate for a substantially shortened standard public workshop phase. The project was awarded to BTA in November 2009, the groundbreaking took place just a few months later in February 2010, and the opening is scheduled for September 2011 –in total less than two years from start to finish. Traditional public meetings can take months, so BTA developed a social media strategy using blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and Flickr to speed things up. BTA worked with Surrey librarians to create a blog on the library website which, in turn, was linked to a Flickr site where BTA posted photos of libraries and other spaces the firm liked. Members of the community were encouraged to post comments and photos; those who did not have a computer or experience with social media went to their local libraries where librarians helped them voice their opinion.

In this way, BTA was able to communicate with a broad range of stakeholders in a short period of time, ensuring that the design got off on the right track. These open, collaborative systems online were also used by BTA and the Surrey Public Library to extend the reach of public meetings and “Meet the Architect” talks to the young and diverse population of Surrey that might not have otherwise voiced their opinions in typical Town Hall forums.

“Surrey has a young population – often families with two working parents who don’t have time to go to public meetings,” says BTA Principal Michael Heeney. “We realized early that it would take us months and months to gather information from the public in the usual ways. Social media made it easy for us to engage in a dialogue with Surrey’s large and disparate community. It was a very eye opening process for us.”

The resulting, innovative design of the library reflects this collaboration, and incorporates the needs of the surrounding community, as well as the demand for libraries to adapt to the way we live and work today. With a grand, center atrium and the requisite private study areas, the design includes a large community multipurpose room that will accommodate 120 people, a computer classroom, a meditation room, and a teen lounge and gaming area.

The virtual “workshops” resulted in several aspects of the design that “might not have been incorporated otherwise,” explains Heeney. Combining both the old and the new techniques of public engagement, BTA teamed up with students from the local high school to create, share, and discuss possible furniture designs and layouts for the Library. Among these are: a pair of special listening music chairs that allow users to preview library media or enjoy their own iPod music in privacy and comfort; a “dinner” table for group work; an LCD-screen TV with comfortable chairs around it; and bean bags throughout. Actual workshops with younger audiences resulted in several additions to the interior, including “a place to color and write,” “a clock to see if we are late,” and “big couches for mom to wait for me.” In addition, custom millwork has been incorporated to promote parent-child reading, interaction, curiosity, play and discovery. Ongoing photo and information streams about the library are building public interest and excitement long before the doors open.

Planning for Future Growth
Surrey is the second largest and fastest-growing city in British Columbia. In fact, the population is expected to outgrow the originally proposed 65,000-square-foot library in a span of about five years. As a result, BTA encouraged the city to future-proof the five-level building by constructing 83,000 square feet now. The excess space will be leased by neighboring Simon Fraser University to operate their Continuing Education program until the library can grow into it. Similarly, there is a full level being built underground, which can later be integrated into an underground civic parkade, another strategy for future expansion and integration with the community.

A New Downtown Continues to Grow
This new building marks the next phase of a major civic investment in the area that will continue the transformation of downtown Surrey from sprawling suburb to the Region’s next great downtown, a process that began with BTA’s Central City project, completed in 2004. This new civic development will ultimately include a new City Hall, a large urban plaza, underground civic parkade, performing arts centre, and additional commercial space – all of which will be arranged adjacent to one of the most intensively used transit hubs in Metro Vancouver. As Bing Thom states, “Surrey City Centre Library is the beginning of a new civic initiative that’s going to further establish the downtown–continuing what we started with our Central City project–for this growing and important city.”

http://www.archdaily.com/70482/surrey-city-centre-library-by-bing-thom-architects/

August 20, 2011

The Museum of Fine Arts Houston | Mies Van der Rohe

After completing a master plan for the site in 1953, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe was commissioned by The Museum of Fine Arts Houston to do two additions to the Caroline Wiess Law Building. Cullinan Hall and Brown Pavilion were added in 1953 and 1974 respectively. See more after the break.

The museum’s original building was designed in 1924 by William Ward Watkin in the Neoclassical style. Here, the South facade features tall Greek columns. In contrast, Van der Rohe’s addition on the North side of the museum stands as a renowned example of International style. Along with the National Gallery in Berlin, the additions to MFAH is Mies van der Rohe’s only museum work.

Utilizing 30 foot ceilings, and 6,800 square feet of open floor space, Cullinan Hall is the museum’s largest and most flexible space for events. Selections from the museum’s permanent collection of Modern and Contemporary art are generally showcased in this portion of the museum. The gently curved gallery is often used for formal events. Together, Cullinan Hall and Brown Pavilion make up over 10,000 square feet of gallery and reception space.The fan-shaped design featured by Mies van der Rohe increases floor space while the radial steel construction allows for a dramatic curtain wall facing the street. The use of modern materials of the time, such as industrial steel and large-pane glass, helped Mies van der Rohe define his “skin and bones” approach. By producing minimal framework for the museum, he implies the freedom of free-flowing open space throughout the interior volume.

Architect: Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
Location: Texas
Project Year: 1953, 1974
References: Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Photographs: Wikimedia CommonsMFAH archiveFlickryan.da

http://www.archdaily.com/153819/ad-classics-the-museum-of-fine-arts-houston-mies-van-der-rohe/

August 17, 2011

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway | Tod Williams + Billie Tsien

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (8) © The Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (2) © The Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (1) © The Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (3) © The Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (5) © The Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (6) © The Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (7) © The Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (4) © The Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation on the Parkway / Tod Williams + Billie Tsien (9) © The Barnes Foundation

The last chance to see the Barnes Foundation’s artwork in its original setting has passed. It is now being prepared for the move to its new home in downtown . Architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien designed the new building for the Barnes Foundation with respect for its strong history and as a reflective addition of the foundation’s mission. The building is scheduled for completion in late 2011.

The Barnes Foundation was initiated by Albert Barnes in the early 20th century to “promote the advancement of education and the appreciation of the fine arts” and horticulture. The foundation has been located in Merion, Pennsylvania for almost a century where Barnes built a gallery around his collection of French Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, and early Modern paintings.

Barnes himself arranged the paintings for display in Merion, and retaining the original placements is a priority for the foundation as well as the architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien. In order to accomplish this, the galleries in Philadelpia will replicate the scale, proportion and configuration of the Merion galleries, but will benefit from a glass canopy to allow in natural light for improved viewing conditions. Other spaces in the new building are entirely original to the Foundation’s expansion.

Tod Williams and Billie Tsien Architects combined the galleries with spaces to compliment the secondary teaching and horticultural missions of the Barnes Foundation. Classrooms and interior gardens neighbor gallery spaces on each level and there are vast public gardens surround the exterior. Additional program new to the Philadelphia expansion includes a café, auditorium, special exhibitions gallery, and facilities for painting conservation and restoration.

Along with the preservation of gallery designs from Marion, Tod Williams and Billie Tsien worked with Olin landscape architects to recall the Marion gardens in the new site. The design concept by the architects is a “ gallery in a garden” accomplished through the beautifully designed public gardens surrounding the building sited in the center.

The grey and gold limestone clad building sits on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and will quickly become a new feature along this stable cultural route. The rectangular glass protrusion covering the length of the building allows light into the galleries through the day, and at night will glow. It is another asset to the artwork and the Barnes Foundation, and a spotlight highlighting the move to its new city, Philadelphia.

Architects: Tod Williams + Billie Tsien
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Project Year: In Progress
Photographs: The Barnes Foundation

http://www.archdaily.com/158892/the-barnes-foundation-on-the-parkway-tod-williams-billie-tsien/

 

 

August 13, 2011

Isabella Stewart Gardner Expansion | Renzo Piano Building Workshop

Photography © George Bouret / Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum February 2011  The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s current entrance off of The Fenway, with the new wing and gallery visible behind it.

February 2011 The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s current entrance off of The Fenway, with the new wing and gallery visible behind it.

Photography © George Bouret / Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum December 2010  View of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum from Evans Way Park, towards the new wing and historic  building.

December 2010 View of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum from Evans Way Park, towards the new wing and historic building

Photography © George Bouret / Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum December 2010  Interior of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s new Calderwood Performance Hall during construction.

December 2010 Interior of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s new Calderwood Performance Hall during construction

Photography © George Bouret / Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum April 2011  The new wing of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum from Evans Way Park (evening), showing the new  entrance and glass lobby (center), the sloping roof of the greenhouses and artist apartments (left), and the  floating copper clad volumes.

April 2011 The new wing of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum from Evans Way Park (evening), showing the new entrance and glass lobby (center), the sloping roof of the greenhouses and artist apartments (left), and the floating copper clad volumes

Photography © George Bouret / Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum April 2011  The new wing of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (evening) from across Evans Way Park, part of  Frederick Law Olmsted’s Emerald Necklace system of parks.

April 2011 The new wing of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (evening) from across Evans Way Park, part of Frederick Law Olmsted’s Emerald Necklace system of parks

Photography © George Bouret / Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum April 2011  Exterior of the new wing of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum during construction (evening), showing the  new entrance and transparent glass lobby (center), the Special Exhibition Gallery floating above it (center),  and the historic building beyond.

April 2011 Exterior of the new wing of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum during construction (evening), showing the new entrance and transparent glass lobby (center), the Special Exhibition Gallery floating above it (center), and the historic building beyond.

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Rendering from Evans Way Park  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Rendering from Evans Way Park © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Renzo Piano Perspective Sketch of the Glass Connector from the New Wing to the Historic Museum Building  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Renzo Piano Perspective Sketch of the Glass Connector from the New Wing to the Historic Museum Building © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Renzo Piano Perspective Sketch, Site Plan of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston    © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

enzo Piano Perspective Sketch, Site Plan of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Renzo Piano Perspective Sketch, Elevation of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Renzo Piano Perspective Sketch, Elevation of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Site Plan of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston    © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Site Plan of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Floor Plan (First Floor) of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston    © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Floor Plan (First Floor) of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Floor Plan (Second Floor) of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston    © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Floor Plan (Second Floor) of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Section through the Performance Hall, the Glass Connector, Exterior Gardens, and Historic Museum Palace  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Section through the Performance Hall, the Glass Connector, Exterior Gardens, and Historic Museum Palace © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Detailed Section through the Performance Hall and The Gardner Cafe  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Detailed Section through the Performance Hall and The Gardner Cafe © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Detailed Section through the Special Exhibition Gallery and Living Room  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Detailed Section through the Special Exhibition Gallery and Living Room © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Section through the Special Exhibition Gallery, Living Room, Glass Connector, and Monks Garden  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Section through the Special Exhibition Gallery, Living Room, Glass Connector, and Monks Garden © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Elevation from Evans Way Park  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Elevation from Evans Way Park © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Elevation from Palace Road  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Elevation from Palace Road © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

© RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010 Elevation from Tetlow Street  © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Elevation from Tetlow Street © RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP, 2010

Opening in 2012, the $118 million steel, glass, and copper-clad expansion to Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum by Renzo Piano Building Workshop will more than double the size of the current facility. Included in the project are a new entrance, music hall, gallery space, and other amenities for an institution that has remained largely unaltered since opening in 1903.

 

The original facility, a Venetian-style palazzo completed in 1901, will remain almost untouched as the new wing is connected to the original museum through a glass passageway. Rather than radically alter the museum experience, the design is intended to augment what is already there. Piano’s new four-story building will host visitor services, now in cramped quarters in the palace; a new 300 seat music hall, allowing the Gardner to stop holding concerts in its delicate and often overcrowded tapestry room; a triple-height gallery for temporary exhibitions; as well as new lobby space, offices, and conservation facilties. A second, smaller structure with a sloping glass roof will house a greenhouse and apartments for artists-in-residence. In total the wing will add 70,000 square feet to the museum’s current 60,000 square feet.

Forget light–I think Piano’s plan for the Gardner is all about drawing. I think that there’s something to this comment posted by Boston Globe arts writer Geoff Edgers on paper’s EXHIBITIONIST blog:

If you’ve ever been around Renzo Piano for, say, 30 seconds, you see how this guy just needs to draw. He has a pencil with him at all times and seems to need to scribble constantly. Turns out he rocked the commission old school when asked to come up with the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s new project.

The building itself is drawn, not just in its representation but in its conceptual construction. The building seems drawn from its institutional context, a remix of existing phenomenological fragments cobbled together into a something new but uncannily familiar. The relationship between the new wing and the original is like that of a drawing to that which it depicts–the translation of the reality of that which exists onto blankness and into a new world. The building makes skillful and eloquent reuse of the palazzo court’s verticality in both the soaring temporary exhibition hall and the new music hall, in which performers are placed the ground floor, ringed by three balconies just one row deep. In its materiality the expansion seeks a presence little more than ink lines on paper, its walls of glass and white copper offering containment while the space is left to define itself.

This was, of course, what the client wanted. Bill Egan, a museum trustee and chair of the Gardner’s building committee, said Piano’s design needed to respect the existing building. ”The whole goal here was to make sure that we didn’t change the experience of the palace, and only enhance that,” Egan told the Globe. “I think we’re going to have one of the great small concert halls in the world, but you know what? We’re not going to have as many seats as [music director] Scott Nickrenz would have liked because the size was basically controlled by how big Renzo felt it could be as compared to the palace.” (It’s also worth noting that the new building is 11 feet shorter than the 70-foot high museum, and the all-glass first floor affords visitors clear views through the site.)

Light does play a large part in Piano’s design, but one that is secondary to the new wing’s function as an institutional auxiliary. Glass lines much of the extension’s ground floor, from the entryway and linking corridor to the sloping wall that allows passers-by to see into the greenhouse and artists studios. As Piano told the Globe: ”The sense of lightness is a fundamental element, so it doesn’t compete with the palace. The new building will be more visible, more accessible, more understandable from the outside,” he said.

Piano’s ability to transform and effectively recreate what he sees led to a reasonable approach to this project, appeasing both the client’s desire for change and for stability, but I’m not convinced that such reasonable architecture is ultimately responsible for the institution.  The political and economic situation is already radically different from when planning for the expansion began in 2004, which raises questions as to whether Piano’s model of transitive evolution is actually produces the sustainable architecture for which he is so frequently praised; or if his radicalization of the readily apparent, as a reification of the status-quo, negates the possibility of other more interesting, innovative, and durable solutions. Such questions don’t concern the design in and of itself, as it is presented in this post, but rather the social and financial impact of that design over time. Also, Piano’s design leaves a lot to be desired: the Museum still needs to raise about $40 million to pay for it. The Gardner’s current capital improvements campaign is certainly justifiable, but its timing raises questions about our ethical responsibilities as practitioners.  As architects we should be aware of our role in shaping the life of the institutions we work for beyond merely shaping the spaces they inhabit. What if the Gardner struggles to recoup construction costs or maintain their new larger facility?  Of course capital improvements help build social capital, but what is the value of a building if its construction and maintenance  are a fiscal burden? Then again, who among us has the expertise or humility to tell a well-funded institutional client that their new building might not be unnecessary…?

Architect: Renzo Piano Building Workshop in collaboration with Burt, Hill
Location: Boston,  USA
Project Team: Emanuela Baglietto (partner in charge), Toby Stewart, Yugon Kim
Geothermal Design:  Allied Consulting Engineering Services, Inc.
Lighting Design, Security Design: ARUP
Structural and MEP Engineer: Buro Happold
Exterior Wall System Design: Front Inc.
Audio Visual Design: Harvey Marshall Berling Associates
Code Engineer: Hughes Associates, Inc.
Geotechnical Consultant: McPhail Associates, Inc.
Acoustician: Nagata Acoustics
Civil Engineer: Nitsch Engineering
Conservation Lab Consultant: Sam Anderson Architects
Cost Consultant: Stuart-Lynn Company
Graphic Design Consultant: 2×4, Inc.

http://www.archdaily.com/153306/isabella-stewart-gardner-expansion-renzo-piano-building-workshop/

June 27, 2011

Museum of the Built Environment, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia | FXFOWLE

FXFOWLE designs new key public building in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

 

FXFOWLE has six active projects within the King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD), an ambitious 55 million-sq-ft mixed-use urban community located in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The firm’s latest project is the Museum of the Built Environment, a new key public building that explores the important role that social, economical and environmental issues play in the development of the Kingdom and the greater region.

The museum is sited on a large plaza bisected by a sunken Wadi, a pedestrian park that flows through the KAFD development. Over 340,000 sq ft is dedicated to museum functions, including permanent and temporary galleries, a 150-seat auditorium and a destination restaurant and terrace. The museum serves as a primary transportation hub for the area, housing a monorail station at its +2 level. For pedestrians it includes connections to neighbouring parcels through a site-wide network of public skywalks at the +1 level.

The Saudi Arabian world heritage sites of Madain Saleh and At-Turaif inspired the museum’s formal concepts of erosion and chiseling of a crystal rock. The programmatic distribution is expressed in the massing by creating greater solidity and opacity on the museum’s upper levels while maintaining transparency on the lower public levels. The building’s façade on the upper levels incorporates prismatic laminated glass panels which create a varied textural quality and allow day light at select controlled locations. Excavation work is currently underway on the Museum, with an anticipated building completion in 2012.

http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.projectview&upload_id=16927