Archive for ‘N E W S’

February 6, 2012

ONE WTC ONE WTC STEEL INSTALLATION MOVES CLOSER TO COMPLETION |HAS REACHED THE 90th FLOOR

Steel installation for One World Trade Center has reached the 90th floor, with 14 more floors to go before it reaches the top of the tower.

Steel installation for One World Trade Center has reached the 90th floor, with 14 more floors to go before it reaches the top of the tower.

One World Trade Center continues to rise above the 9/11 Memorial Plaza and 4 World Trade Center.  The tower is being erected at a rate of one floor per week.

One World Trade Center continues to rise above the 9/11 Memorial Plaza and 4 World Trade Center. The tower is being erected at a rate of one floor per week.

An ironworker works on a steel beam on the top deck of One World Trade Center, with the Hudson River in the background.

An ironworker works on a steel beam on the top deck of One World Trade Center, with the Hudson River in the background.

Ironworkers install perimeter columns on the northeast side of One World Trade Center, with the East River in the background.

Ironworkers install perimeter columns on the northeast side of One World Trade Center, with the East River in the background.

A perimeter column is installed on the top deck of One World Trade Center.

A perimeter column is installed on the top deck of One World Trade Center.

The Statue of Liberty is clearly visible to ironworkers fastening steel bolts on the top deck of One World Trade Center.

The Statue of Liberty is clearly visible to ironworkers fastening steel bolts on the top deck of One World Trade Center.

http://www.panynj.gov/wtcprogress/index.html

December 3, 2011

Adrian Smith, the maestro of super-tall

Architect wants to take you higher

Kevin Brass (kbrass@thenational.ae)

The architect based in Chicago worked as a lead designer with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill on four of the 11 tallest towers in the world, including Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the world’s tallest building. Now his firm, Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture, is designing the 1-kilometre-tall Kingdom Tower in Jeddah, which will take the title of world’s tallest when – and if – it is built.

Far from subsiding, the zest for building tall towers is continuing with fervour, especially in China, where Mr Smith’s company is working on several towers of more than 600 metres.

“There is no telling how far it will go,” Mr Smith said in an interview with The National. “We keep seeing people wanting super tall. And they keep upping the ante.”

But while the industry continues to strive for new heights, the debate rages about the sustainability and eco-credentials of the tall towers. Critics suggest the buildings are more about ego than efficiency.

Mr Smith, who will be in Dubai next Tuesday to address the Green Build Congress at the Dubai World Trade Centre, argues that skyscrapers are both eco-friendly and practical.

What is the next challenge for building super-talls?

I think architects and engineers can design buildings that will go even taller. We’re working on a tower now that will go a mile high, as a prototype, not as a commission. But to see how possible it is.

 

 

Once the building gets to be more than a kilometre, they get to be very big buildings, not only in height, but area. Primarily area. One of the limiting factors is how much area of [a] building can you put in [a] city on one time and market it successfully and have reasonable income or rate of return on investment. That’s a big challenge. But that’s not our challenge, it’s more of the developer’s challenge.

Our challenge and the technical challenge would be as you get taller the elevator systems have to improve in order to get elevators to go higher in the building before transfer. Right now that limit is roughly 575 metres. So if it goes one kilometre, you start to get into a double transfer system.

That begins to be pretty onerous in terms of how many elevator rides you’re taking before you get to your destination.

Those are the only limitations?

Structurally we can go a mile high. We know that from a wind perspective we can design a building that will behave properly in wind conditions that exist in most cities. It basically becomes more than one building tied together. But it is possible.

Are super-talls sustainable, green projects?

A lot of people believe super-tall buildings are not sustainable. We are in [the] process of doing a research effort which looks at every typology of building – from super tall up to 200 storeys down to single family homes and just about every typology in between and evaluating the energy consumption required on a square-metre basis needed for each of those typologies.

So far we’re finding that the super-tall building is in the middle of the road. It’s not the best-performing, but it’s not the worst performing either.

The best-performing tends to be something in the 40-storey range. And once you go higher than that certain other elements, like increased winds and lower temperatures, begin to impact the energy consumption in the building. But once you go less dense than that you get killed by additional surface area.

So just from a building performance point of view, we think super-tall is justifiable as it relates to density of anything below 40 stories.

Can you rationalise going above 40 storeys?

In the ideal world, yes. When you go high-density you will encourage or almost mandate that the location be served by public transit. And when you go high-density with block after block, like the city of New York or Chicago, you have the added benefit of live-work environments where people can live and work in the same district.

Is there technology that will make taller buildings more efficient?

I would say in truth higher buildings are as efficient as a 40-storey. You are putting space above 40 storeys in a different kind of environment. It’s location-specific to some degree. In Dubai [in Burj Khalifa], for example, it is 7 to 10 degrees cooler at the top of the building than at the bottom of the building. That actually helps you in Dubai because your cycle is mostly cooling.

Whereas in Chicago that same principle applies but in Chicago in winter it actually hurts you because it is actually colder up there than on the ground. And your heating cycle takes over and you’re losing more heat near the top of the building.

The study is inconclusive at the moment. We’re still in [the] process of fine-tuning a lot of these issues. But in general, I would say that they already are sustainable.

Another part of the study is how much land you use for a super-tall building versus how much land you use for single-family or even a 40-storey.

The land is valuable in itself. The more that can be turned into green belt the better. So you have to consider that aspect.

Q&A:some of Adrian Smith’s most noteworthy projects

Trump International Hotel & Tower, Chicago The 10th tallest building in the world added a new landmark to the Chicago skyline. Perched on the Chicago River, the 423-metre tower completed in 2009 includes a 225-room hotel, 472 residential units and 50,000 square feet of retail space.

201 Bishopsgate and The Broadgate Tower, London Set on a key site in London, at the centre of the Broadgate business district, the two towers combine restaurants, bars and retail space on a 2.3 acre site above the active rail lines.

Burj Khalifa, Dubai The world’s tallest building, completed last year, answered many of the questions facing tall building construction. The rounded, tiered design minimized the influence of wind at high levels, and systems were creating for the elevators, plumbing and other apparatus that had never been installed at such altitudes.

http://www.thenational.ae/thenationalconversation/industry-insights/property/architect-wants-to-take-you-higher?pageCount=0

December 3, 2011

Big Names Team up!

National Mall Competition Finalists Announced

Over 1,200 entires from 30 states and 10 countries submitted applications for the National Mall competition. Late last month fifteen design teams were chosen as finalists to advance to the second stage of this prestigious contest.

Hosting 25 million visitors annually, the  will undergo an estimated $700 million restoration beginning in 2012. The competition has been broken down into three areas of restoration: Union Square including the Reflecting Pool and the Ulysses S. Grant Memorial,Sylvan Theater on the Washington Monument Grounds, and the Constitution Gardensbetween the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the Lincoln Memorial.

Among the finalists to move on to stage two of the competition, Diller Scofidio Renfro,, and Rogers Marvel Architects who are shortlisted for two out of the three areas of restoration, as well as SnohettaMichael Maltzan ArchitectureTen Arquitectos, andBohlin Cywinski Jackson who are finalists for one area of restoration.

“Entrants were evaluated on past design performance, philosophy, design intent, thoughtfulness, creativity and overall resume,” according to a release from the Trust of the National Mall. The jury, compiled of architects, professors and other members of the architecture community, includedMichael Gericke of Pentagram NYC and Pritzker Prize Laureate Thom Mayne founder of Morphosis.

The second stage of the competition includes interviews of the teams conducted by the Trust for the National Mall and the National Park Service, and the last stage will include proposed plans for the restoration. The competition will culminate in May 2012 and the proposed designs from stage three of the competition will be available to the public prior to the winning design being selected.

Follow the break for a complete list of design finalists for the National Mall Competition.

Union Square

Diller Scofidio Renfro & Hood Design
Elizabeth Diller | Lead Architect
Walter Hood | Lead Landscape Architect

Gustafson Guthrie Nichol & AEDAS
Kathryn Gustafson, FLA, ASLA, Hon RDI | Lead Landscape Architect
Carl F. Krebs, AIA | Lead Architect

Pei Cobb Freed & Partners Architects & Workshop:Ken Smith Landscape Architect
Henry N. Cobb, FAIA | Lead Architect
Ken Smith, ASLA | Lead Landscape Architect

Reed Hilderbrand & Chan Krieger NBBJ
Gary R. Hilderbrand, FASLA, FAAR | Lead Landscape Architect
Alex Krieger, FAIA | Lead Architect

Rogers Marvel Architects & Peter Walker and Partners
Robert M. Rogers, FAIA | Lead Architect
Jonathan M. Marvel, AIA | Lead Architect
Peter Walker, FASLA | Lead Landscape Architect

Snohetta & AECOM
Craig Dykers, AIA, siv. ark. MNAL, FRIBA, LEED AP | Lead Architect
Roger Courtenay, FASLA, LEED AP | Lead Landscape Architect

Sylvan Theater on the Washington Monument Grounds

Balmori Associates & Work Architecture Company
Diana Balmori | Lead Landscape Architect
Amale Andraos | Lead Architect
Dan Wood, AIA, LEED | Lead Architect

Diller Scofidio Renfro & Hood Design
Elizabeth Diller | Lead Architect
Walter Hood | Lead Landscape Architect

Handel Architects & W Architecture and Landscape Architecture
Michael Arad, AIA, LEED AP | Lead Architect
Barbara Wilks, FASLA, FAIA | Lead Landscape Architect

Michael Maltzan Architecture & Tom Leader Studio
Michael T. Maltzan, FAIA | Lead Architect
Tom Leader, ASLA | Lead Landscape Architect

OLIN & Weiss/Manfredi
Skip Graffam, RLA, ASLA, LEED AP | Lead Landscape Architect
Marion Weiss, AIA | Lead Architect

Ten Arquitectos & Andrea Cochran Landscape Architects
Enrique Norten, Hon. FAIA | Lead Architect
Andrea Cochran, FASLA | Lead Landscape Architect

Constitution Gardens

Andropogon & Bohlin Cywinski Jackson
Jose M. Alminana, RLA, FASLA, LEED AP | Lead Landscape Architect
Frank W. Grauman, RA, FAIA, LEED AP | Lead Architect

Lee and Associates & Arthur Cotton Moore/Associates
Jeff S. Lee, FASLA | Lead Landscape Architect
Arthur Cotton Moore, FAIA | Lead Architect

McKissack & McKissack & Oehme Van Sweden
Ronald A. Kessler, AIA | Lead Architect
Sheila A. Brady, FASLA | Lead Landscape Architect

Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architect & Paul Murdoch Architects
Warren T. Byrd Jr., FASLA | Lead Landscape Architect
Paul Murdoch, AIA, LEED AP | Lead Architect

OLIN & Weiss/Manfredi
Skip Graffam, RLA, ASLA, LEED AP | Lead Landscape Architect
Marion Weiss, AIA | Lead Architect

Rogers Marvel Architects & Peter Walker and Partners
Robert M. Rogers, FAIA | Lead Architect
Jonathan M. Marvel, AIA | Lead Architect
Peter Walker, FASLA | Lead Landscape Architect

http://www.archdaily.com/182707/national-mall-competition-finalists-announced/

September 7, 2011

world’s highest Ferris wheel

Don’t look down: China debuts world’s ‘highest’ Ferris wheel, at top of 1,500ft tower
By EMILY ALLEN

 

An elliptical track has been constructed around the edge of the tower's roof, and the 16 transparent 'crystal' pods take between 20 and 40 minutes to go round the track

On top of the world: An elliptical track has been constructed around the edge of the tower's roof, and the 16 transparent 'crystal' pods take between 20 and 40 minutes to go round the track

This is the world's 'highest' Ferris wheel on top of a 1,480ft tower in China - with passengers riding in see-through pods

Riding high: This is the world's 'highest' Ferris wheel on top of a 1,480ft tower in China - with passengers riding in see-through pods

Unlike other Ferris wheels, it has a 15-degree incline and can resist 8-magnitude earthquakes and Beaufort scale 12 typhoons.

Sturdy: Unlike other Ferris wheels this has a 15-degree incline and can resist 8-magnitude earthquakes and Beaufort scale 12 typhoons

Each capsule is just over three meters wide, and built using a special macromolecule material which allows a 360-degree crystal clear view

Sky's the limit: Each capsule is just over three meters wide, and built using a special macromolecule material which allows a 360-degree crystal clear view

If you thought the London Eye was a stomach-churning experience, then look away now.

The world’s ‘highest’ Ferris wheel has been unveiled in China – on top of a 1,480ft tower.

Passengers were set to ride in see-through capsules perched on top of the 450-metre-high Canton Tower, also known as the Guangzhou TV Tower. The 16 pods – which hold a total of 96 thrill seekers – each measure just over three metres wide.

They were built using a special macromolecule material which allows a 360-degree crystal clear view.

Unlike other Ferris wheels, it has a 15-degree incline and can resist 8-magnitude earthquakes and Beaufort scale 12 typhoons.

An elliptical track has been constructed around the edge of the tower’s roof, and the 16 transparent ‘crystal’ pods take between 20 and 40 minutes to go round the track.

It’s located in Guangzhou, capital of the southwestern Chinese province of Guangdong.

The attraction will cost visitors 130 Yuan each.

Although it’s described as a Ferris, its passenger cars are not suspended from the rim of a wheel in the traditional fashion and the track is horizontal.

The tower is also known by its local nickname – Xiao Man’s waist – which refers to a famous Geisha who used to entertain people during the reign of the tang Dynasty.

She was appreciated for her slim waist and the tower has a twisted and tight appearance.

In August, Las Vegas announced plans to build the world’s ‘tallest’ Ferris wheel, which will be more than 100ft higher than the London Eye.

Caesar’s Entertainment, which runs the Caesar’s Palace hotel and casino, revealed its wheel will be called the ‘Las Vegas High Roller’ and measure 550ft.

That would pip the Singapore Flyer (541ft) to the title of world’s tallest wheel.

The London Eye is 443ft tall.

GROUND-BREAKING RIDES

1. Kingda Ka is the world’s tallest rollercoaster at Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey, U.S. The top tower is 456 feet tall

2. Formula Rossa at Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, is the world’s fastest roller coaster with a top speed of 150mph which it can reach in 4.9 seconds.

3.Takabisha is the world’s steepest rollercoaster with a drop angle of 121 degrees  in Yamanashi, Japan.

4. The Singapore Flyer is a giant Ferris wheel in Singapore at 541ft tall making it the tallest in the world

5. Superman Ride of Steel in Massachusetts, U.S. wins awards every year as the best rollercoaster in the country. It speeds over 77mph, has a 221ft drop into a tunnel and 10 seconds of weightlessness

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-2032496/Canton-Tower-Ferris-wheel-worlds-highest-1-500ft-located-Guangzhou-China.html

September 4, 2011

Four Freedoms Park | Louis Kahn

Last September, we shared the news of ’s memorial park for the southernmost tip of Roosevelt Island. Kahn had designed the park in the 70s, but after his sudden death, the plan was forgotten until 1992 when the MoMA featured the scheme in an exhibition.   Upon learning of Kahn’s thoughtful and architecturally compelling ideas to commemorate FDR and his Four Freedoms speech,  the public quickly advocated its completion.   As we reported earlier, at the end of Kahn’s axial tree-lined triangular “Garden”, a 72 sqf   “Room” will contain excerpts from the text of President Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech.  This room, contained by 12 foot high granite columns, is meant for contemplation and remembrance as Kahn’s stoic material palette, clear formal attitude, and forced perspective of the skyline will create, what we imagine will be, a quiet and peaceful atmosphere.   With Kahn’s simple gestures, the memorial will preserve a time in American history where FDR’s leadership inspired hope to endure the Great Depression and the second World War.  We’re excited for the memorial to be completed and we’ll keep you up to date with its progress.

http://www.archdaily.com/165965/in-progress-four-freedoms-park-louis-kahn/

August 28, 2011

Jobs Quits as Apple CEO

[JOBSQUOTE]

Steve Jobs delivered the keynote address at the 2011 Apple World Wide Developers Conference at the Moscone Center on June 6 in San Francisco

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs, the ailing tech visionary who founded Apple Inc., said he was unable to continue as chief executive of the technology giant and handed the reins to Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook.

Apple said Mr. Jobs submitted his resignation to the board of directors on Wednesday and “strongly recommended” that the board name Mr. Cook as his successor. Mr. Jobs, 56 years old, has been elected chairman of the board and Mr. Cook will join the board, effective immediately, the company said.

“I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know,” Mr. Jobs said in his resignation letter. “Unfortunately, that day has come.”

Art Levinson, chairman of Genentech and an Apple board member, said in a statement that the board “has complete confidence that Tim is the right person to be our next CEO.” He added that Mr. Jobs will “continue to serve Apple with his unique insights, creativity and inspiration.”

After a brief halt, Apple’s shares slid 5.13% to $355.70 in after-hours trading, after closing at $376.18, up $2.58, at 4 p.m. on the Nasdaq Stock Market Wednesday.

Mr. Cook, 50, has been widely considered as the leading candidate to succeed Mr. Jobs, who has been on medical leave since January. The 13-year Apple veteran, who joined the company shortly after Mr. Jobs took over for the second time in 1997, has been running the day-to-day operations during this period as he has done during two prior medical leaves of absence by Mr. Jobs in the last seven years.

The announcement likely marks the end of one of the most extraordinary careers in U.S. business history. Mr. Jobs not only co-founded Apple—and the personal computer industry along with it—but decades later played a central role in reshaping the music, movie, animation, and mobile-phone businesses.

“Steve Jobs is the world’s magic man. No compromises,” wrote John Sculley, who led the company from 1983 for a decade, in an email. Mr. Sculley was recruited by Mr. Jobs in 1983 as CEO, but ousted him in 1985 after a power struggle.

Mr. Jobs—widely known for his mercurial, demanding management style—drove his company relentlessly to make products that consumers lusted for, unveiling them in heavily rehearsed events that earned him a reputation as high-tech’s greatest showman.

It earned him a fortune that he said he wasn’t interested in. The company pays Mr. Jobs a salary of $1 a year. He also has Apple shares worth about $2.1 billion, and is the single largest Disney shareholder, with stock worth about $4.4 billion.

Even after his health began to fail, Mr. Jobs insisted on turning up at key product launches—including the introduction of the iPad 2 earlier this year, where he was greeted with a sustained standing ovation.

“I think his brilliance has been well-documented, but what gets forgotten is the bravery with which he’s confronted his illness,” said Howard StringerSony Corp.’s chief executive. “For him to achieve this much success under these circumstances doubles his legacy.”

Perhaps more than any other CEO, Mr. Jobs has developed a cult-like following among both employees and customers who hang on his every word at press conferences and vigorously defend the executive from those who might question his products.

Former Apple employees say he created a unique culture inside the company, and affected how other Silicon Valley companies think about innovation.

“Steve inspired an entire generation of entrepreneurs and creative people to think about things in terms of innovation and design,” said Dave Morin, the CEO of start-up Path Inc. and an Apple employee from 2003 to 2006.

The announcement focuses attention on the health of Mr. Jobs, who was diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer in 2004 and underwent a liver transplant two years ago.

Mr. Jobs hasn’t commented on it since he said in a letter in January that he was taking another leave of absence to “focus on my health.” He appeared thin at Apple’s annual developers’ conference in June.

People familiar with the matter say Mr. Jobs has continued to be active at Apple and closely involved in the company’s product strategy. To the extent his health permits, some Apple watchers think that involvement is likely to continue even after Mr. Cook takes the CEO post.

Some Apple employees Wednesday were in a state of disbelief, people familiar with the situation said. One person noted that Mr. Jobs had been seen less frequently around the company’s campus lately.

The transition to Mr. Cook has been widely expected and many are determined to move forward, starting with the launch of the fifth-generation iPhone, which is expected in October.

Mr. Cook, an Alabama native who previously worked for International Business MachinesCorp. and Compaq Computer Corp., is known for his operational acumen. He was instrumental in wringing out inefficiencies in Apple’s manufacturing and setting up its supply chain in China.

Since then, he has gradually increased his responsibilities, becoming chief operating officer in 2005. He has also ably led the company during Mr. Jobs’s absences in the past.

Unlike Mr. Jobs, Mr. Cook has tended to stay outside of the spotlight apart from quarterly earnings calls with analysts.

Mr. Cook faces a daunting task succeeding Mr. Jobs, who proved his managerial mettle by bringing Apple back from near bankruptcy when he returned to it in 1997. And Mr. Jobs relentlessly pushed through his vision of the tech business, reviving the Macintosh computer business and developing new products like the iPod, iPhone and iPad.

Apple faces a particular challenge in that Mr. Jobs has had an unusually strong influence in setting Apple’s corporate culture and strategy, said Charles O’Reilly, a management expert at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business “Great companies rarely go from strength to strength,” he said.

“I believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it,” Mr. Jobs wrote in his letter Wednesday. “And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role.

“I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you,” he added.

The news of Mr. Jobs’s resignation quickly became the talk of the Internet. Overwhelmed with traffic, the blog Cult of Mac temporary went offline. “This thing is melting down,” said editor Leander Kahney, about an hour after the news broke on Wednesday.

Wall Street reacted with little surprise. “This was a ‘when’ not ‘if’ moment,” said Mike Binger a fund manager for Thrivent Asset Management in Minneapolis, which owns Apple shares. He added that he had no plans to change his holdings, saying that the stock is still “really cheap for the kind of operating fundamentals they’ve been putting up.”

The value of the company, however, has been skyrocketing as the success of products like the iPhone, iPad and ultra-thin Macintosh computers keep setting records. At close to $350 billion, Apple is second only Exxon Mobil in market valuationat the moment, recently eclipsing the oil giant for a brief period.

Tim Ghriskey, chief investment officer for Solaris Asset Management in New York, which holds Apple shares said he has confidence in Apple’s executive team even without Mr. Jobs, but is hoping for more details on who will be Apple’s “creative force” now that he is gone.

While Mr. Jobs’s resignation is a blow to Apple, the company has a solid pipeline of products, churning out new versions of its Macs, iPhones, iPads and iPods every year.

A person familiar with the situation has said in the past that the board spends most of its time discussing product development and there is a roadmap in place for the next several years. Its next iPhone is expected in mid-October.

“This definitely marks the end of an era,” said Michael Gartengerg, an analyst for Gartner, but he added that “there’s much more to Apple than Steve Jobs.”

—Ian Sherr and Geoffrey A. Fowler contributed to this article.

Write to Yukari Iwatani Kane at yukari.iwatani@wsj.com

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111904875404576528981250892702.html

August 20, 2011

Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?

Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?

In Ho Chi Minh City, Carlos Zapata Studio and EE&K (now owned by Perkins Eastman) are working on a 7.5 million-square-foot development dubbed Ma Lang Center.
Image courtesy Carlos Zapata Studio and EE&K, a Perkins Eastman company
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
In Ho Chi Minh City, Carlos Zapata Studio and EE&K (now owned by Perkins Eastman) are working on a 7.5 million-square-foot development dubbed Ma Lang Center.
Image courtesy Carlos Zapata Studio and EE&K, a Perkins Eastman company
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
SOM has six projects in Vietnam, including Green Tech City, in Hanoi. The master plan features two villages and a lush park that will act as a sponge for rain runoff.
Image courtesy SOM
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
SOM has six projects in Vietnam, including Green Tech City, in Hanoi. The master plan features two villages and a lush park that will act as a sponge for rain runoff.
Image courtesy SOM
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
In Long Xuyen, which is on the Mekong Delta, EE&K has conceived a master plan that calls for transforming 470 rural acres into dense urban neighborhoods.
Image courtesy EE&K, a Perkins Eastman company
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
In Long Xuyen, EE&K has proposed a multibuilding project for downtown.
Image courtesy EE&K, a Perkins Eastman company
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
Perkins Eastman has conceived a 229-acre residential district that will be part of North An Khanh New City, a new mixed-use development in Hanoi designed to accommodate 30,000 inhabitants.
Image courtesy Perkins Eastman
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
Perkins Eastman has conceived a 229-acre residential district that will be part of North An Khanh New City, a new mixed-use development in Hanoi designed to accommodate 30,000 inhabitants.
Image courtesy Perkins Eastman
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
Carlos Zapata Studio has designed a 450-room waterfront Marriott in Hanoi. The building, which resembles a crooked horseshoe if viewed from above, is now under construction.
Image courtesy Carlos Zapata Studio
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
As this photo illustration shows, the 68-floor Bitexco Financial Tower, completed in 2010 in Ho Chi Minh City, features a helipad jutting like a diving board from its glass-walled upper stories. Carlos Zapata Studio designed the building.
Image courtesy Carlos Zapata Studio
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
In Danang, SOM has been tapped to design the master plan for FPT City (FPT is a telecommunications company). The 180-hectare mixed-use project features a town center, university campus, business district, and residential zones.
Image courtesy SOM
Is Vietnam the New Frontier for Architects?
In Danang, SOM has been tapped to design the master plan for FPT City (FPT is a telecommunications company). The 180-hectare mixed-use project features a town center, university campus, business district, and residential zones.
Image courtesy SOM
It might have been unthinkable as a place to do business just a few decades ago, when half of the country was at war with the United States. It doesn’t have the resources of China, its booming neighbor to the north. And its communist government might not appeal to citizens from capitalist nations.

But quietly, Vietnam has in recent years become a hot spot for many Western architects, as work in their home countries remains elusive. About two dozen North American and European firms now have projects in the Southeast Asian nation, including Foster + Partners, HOK, and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM). And some are opening permanent offices there, according to architects working in the country.

Vietnam is “starting to dip its toe into the pool with more Western buildings, because it wants to make a mark on the international scene,” says architect Anthony Montalto, a principal with Chicago-based Carlos Zapata Studio. “There is definitely an opportunity to try something fresh.”

Two of his firm’s buildings — reportedly among the first by U.S. designers to be built in Vietnam — appear strikingly different from the low-slung and boxy structures in the country’s cities. Its 68-floor Bitexco Financial Tower, completed in 2010 in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon), features a helipad jutting like a diving board from its glass-walled upper stories. And in Hanoi, the firm’s 450-room waterfront Marriott, which resembles a crooked horseshoe if viewed from above, is now under construction.

Many of the opportunities in Vietnam entail urban planning. Unlike buildings, master plans do not require collaboration with licensed local architects, perhaps making them easier for Westerners to take on, according to sources.

HOK, for one, was recently hired by Sacom, a telecom and real estate company, to conceive a 27-acre development in Ho Chi Minh City (where the firm has a six-employee office, founded in 2009). Geared toward young professionals, the scheme features 1,600 homes and is crisscrossed by canals, says Tyler Meyr, an HOK senior associate. Like many projects in Vietnam, the Sacom development will be built on state-owned farmland, which is viewed as expendable now that the country is transitioning from agriculture to heavy industry, architects say.

The state, and the population at large, do not seem to bear a grudge against America, despite the fact that it conducted a decades-long war there, adds Meyr. “They are in a very optimistic time and thinking about the future rather than the past,” he says.

That upbeat mood can be explained partly by the influx of jobs due to foreign investment. With 87 million people, Vietnam is seen by many as a favorable place to locate factories because the labor force is comparatively cheap—about half that of manufacturing districts in China, according to World Bank figures. Intel, for one, opened a $1 billion semiconductor factory in the country last year. The United States’ normalization of trade within Vietnam in 2000 has also strengthened relations and spurred development, analysts say.

In turn, architects have come knocking, prompted by continued softness in the U.S. building industry. There are about a dozen American firms working in the southern city of Long Xuyen alone, explains architect Ming Wu, a design principal with Ehrenkrantz Eckstut & Kuhn Architects (EE&K, now owned by Perkins Eastman). “Every day, more and more foreign architects are piling into Vietnam,” he says.

In Long Xuyen, which is on the Mekong Delta, EE&K has proposed a multibuilding project for downtown, in addition to conceiving a master plan that calls for transforming 470 rural acres into dense urban neighborhoods. Both schemes await approval.

EE&K is tapping into other cities, as well. In Ho Chi Minh City, it is working alongside Carlos Zapata on a mega-development dubbed Ma Lang Center. In Hanoi, the same team has created a master plan for a new 200-acre district called Hoang Mai Park City. British firms are showing up in Vietnam, too. Last fall, Foster + Partners broke ground on a bank complex in Hanoi.

One of the busier global firms in Vietnam might be SOM. It has six projects in the country, all master plans. It recently was tapped for Green Tech City, in Hanoi, which features two villages and a lush park that will act as a sponge for rain runoff, says Daniel Ringelstein, SOM director of urban design and planning.

Working in Vietnam does have its drawbacks. Projects don’t always pay competitive fees, and some cite systemic corruption in the awarding of contracts. Also, clients often emphasize cars over trains, meaning the country might repeat mistakes seen in the United States. “We’ve learned in the West that if you build more roads, it won’t solve traffic problems,” Ringelstein says. “It means more cars will come.”

By C. J. Hughes

http://archrecord.construction.com/news/2011/07/110722-Vietnam.asp

 

August 13, 2011

Google HQ | Ingenhoven Architects

Google to Build Headquarters in Mountain View Google Mountain View © Ingenhoven Architects

The rise of Google Inc. Is a phenomenal success story that has just begun. More than 80% of all searches world-wide are done using Google. The growth of the company is mirrored in the growth of the Google Campus in Mountain View/California, the Headquarters of Google on Charleston Park. Google is proud of its corporate culture and offers attractive workplaces in order to attract the best talents from all over the world. Google wants to build a showcase sustainable building. On the adjacent site between Charleston Road and Shoreline Boulevard a large new building will be built for Google. The site demands a building with autarkic geometry. As part of an international selection process ingenhoven architects won the commission to design the new HQ. The client’s brief was simple: It should be the best and „greenest” building in the world! The new building will be home for 2.500-3.000 engineers and scientists as well as the Headquarters. The Google Headquarters is the first project for ingenhoven architects in the US and Google builds for itself for the first time. Google‘s success depends on engineers, inventors mathematicians, IT-experts and scientists of all kinds. The building should reflect their different approaches and enhance convenience and productivity. The building will be „lively, fresh, simple and flexible” and offer healthy, communicative and effective workplaces and have „buzz“. The architecture is an expression of the „corporate culture” and at the same time a model for sustainable architecture in the broadest sense surpassing the LEED-Platinum-Standards with its holistic concept. Construction will start in 2012.

TEAM

Architect
ingenhoven architects

Local architect
Gensler

MEP/Civil Engineering
Glumac and Sandis

Sustainability
Glumac and DS-Plan

Structral Engineering
Magnusson Klemencic and Werner Sobek Ingenieure

Facade design and special structures
Werner Sobek Ingenieure

Cost
Davis Langdon

Facade Access
Lerch Bates

Kitchen and Food
RAS Design Group

Signage and Graphics
ingenhoven architects

Landscape architecture
Gustafson Guthrie Nichol

LEED
Rick Unvarsky

Light design
OVI/Tropp

Traffic and Parking
Fehr & Peers and IPD

Elevators
Edgett Williams Cons. Group

Waterproofing
Simpson Gumpertz & Heger

Fire Protection
The Fire Consultants

Acoustics
Glumac- Charles Saulter

http://www.ingenhovenarchitects.com/flash.html

August 4, 2011

Architect Q&A: The State of Super-Tall Towers

By Maura Webber Sadovi

Associated Press

Adrian Smith, 66, is the senior design partner at Chicago-based Adrian Smith+Gordon Gill Architecture. While at his previous firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, Mr. Smith designed the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, which at 2,717-feet high is the world’s tallest, along with China’s Nanjing’s Zifeng Tower, Chicago’s Trump International Hotel & Tower and Shanghai’s Jin Mao Tower.

He was recently awarded the 2011 Lynn S. Beedle Lifetime Achievement Award from theCouncil on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitatfor his contributions to the field of super-tall buildings. (Some questions and answers below have been condensed.)

Q: What is the biggest challenge to designing tall buildings?

A: It’s a combination of making an elegant structure and one that also works with the major constraints such as wind. One of the major issues of tall buildings is how much they move from one side to the other and how rapidly they move. We try to minimize the movement through a number of ways that are both structural and architectural. The Burj Khalifa is as much an engineering strategy as an architectural strategy. The stepped shape helps to confuse the wind. The wind doesn’t have an opportunity to organize very rapidly because of the steps.

Q: How have the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks affected tall buildings?

A. It hasn’t really affected the desire for people to go tall but it made us more aware of building in redundancies and making the building more terror-proof. Sometimes stairs are wider or there are more stairs than there used to be and there’s more security around the buildings.

Q: Was there ever a time when you thought no more super-tall buildings would be built?

A: No, I never thought that. I think human nature is always going to go after spectacular achievements. As long as they can, they will.

Q: Will demand for the tallest buildings ever return to the United States?

A: There’s a strategy for developing super-tall buildings because in and of themselves they very rarely make money. So what they’re doing in China and in other locations like Dubai is they will use the tall buildings as a catalyst for developing the land around it and the person who owns the tall buildings and the land around it will make his money off the adjacent land. The tower itself gives the land around it the prestige, a location and an identity. One of the problems with doing that in the United State is that most of the time super-tall buildings are needed in the inner city. And you just can’t get that much land in the U.S. because we’re not really developing new cities.

Q: How high can we go?

A: The limiting factor is probably the elevator system. When you get higher than about 550 meters [about 1,804 feet] with a single elevator, the weight of the cable gets too heavy. And if you stack up two to three elevators now you’re spending time transferring from one elevator to another and my guess is people don’t want to do that. But if we can solve the elevator problem I know we can design to a mile high. I’ve designed an experimental building that would go a mile high….It’s a very, very large building of about six to eight million square feet.

http://blogs.wsj.com/developments/2011/07/08/architect-qa-the-state-of-super-tall-towers/

July 3, 2011

Peter Ruggiero formerly Design Partner at Skidmore Owings & Merrill LLP in Chicago joins HOK as Design Principal

Peter Ruggiero, AIA, joins HOK as Design Principal

HOK has just announced Peter Ruggiero, AIA as its new design principal. Recognised for meticulous design simplicity, sustainable logic, and highest-quality, efficient solutions, Peter’s work spans the globe – Asia, the Middle East, Russia, Europe and North America. Ruggiero’s design experience is all-encompassing ― commercial, corporate, education, transportation, municipal design and recently, large scale mixed-use programs, residential developments, and university research facilities. As Design Principal, Ruggiero will personally direct design teams for all Gulf Coast Region projects.

His notable projects include 7 World Trade Center, the first new building in lower Manhattan post 9/11 and catalyst for critical urban design plan decision that informed the WTC master plan; NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium; John F. Kennedy International Airport’s Terminal 4 to accommodate a significant portion of Delta Air Lines’ operations at JFK, as well as growth in the operations of other IAT carriers and Dulles International Airport main terminal expansion that has the potential to increase the annual passenger handling capacity up to 50 million passengers per year.

With 28 years of architectural design experience on marquee projects, Peter is recognised for his design simplicity, efficiency, and logic. His work is influenced by the simplicity of nature and the logic of industrial objects. Ruggiero, formerly Design Partner at Skidmore Owings & Merrill LLP in Chicago, studied at New York Institute of Technology and Harvard Graduate School of Design and was adjunct associate professor at Columbia University, GSAPP from 1999-2003. He is a member of the Chicago Architectural Club, the American Institute of Architects, Architectural League of New York, The Municipal Society of New York, Urban Land Institute, Midwest High-Speed Rail Association and the Rice Design Alliance.

http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.projectview&upload_id=17006