Thursday, May 31, 2012

A sustainable city for the green world of tomorrow

Cities built without planning often resemble chaos while those that are meticulously planned look artificial. There is a need for the city to be a model of harmonious co-existence of natural and man-made elements. And that is the inspiration for the design and development of the Bio Divercity concept for planning and construction of cities. The concept intends to create a biosphere out of the concrete jungles. The challenge in designing the city along the lines of the biosphere would be to retain the individuality of each structure and still make each of them work towards a collective identity and purpose.


Awe-Inspiring American Monuments

1. Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, CA
Once the world’s longest suspension bridge, the 1.7-mile Golden Gate has since been surpassed in size-but not in beauty. Hundreds of people walk the span from San Francisco to Sausalito each day, so you’ll want to plan wisely. Bypass the two-hour meters at the overcrowded main lot off S.F.’s Merchant Road in favor of ample free parking at Crissy Field Center ( There, fair-trade coffee awaits at the Warming Hut Café & Bookstore, a whitewashed shed near the shore that’s the perfect place to fuel up for the gentle, half-mile Bay Trail to the bridge. The Golden Gate’s best-kept secret: Although it’s closed to pedestrians after sunset, gates are opened for star-gazing cyclists.

Craziest Homes from Around the World

 1) The AURA Residence on the island of Cyprus is a “very modern and futuristic-looking villa” that is being entered into the World Architecture Awards. “The philosophy behind the (exterior) design of The AURA Residence was based on the Great Wave off Kanagawa, a famous woodblock printing by the Japanese artist Hokusai.
2) The blog Hooked on Houses recently dug up photos of Wisconsin’s Futuro house, known as the “UFO house” because it’s, well, shaped like a spaceship. The good news: looks like you can rent it for a summer vacation.

Alpine renewal: A sustainable building with socially orientated interior spaces

 Ben Comber, an architectural designer by profession, has designed a sustainable building that has been named An Alpine Renewal. This attention-grabbing building has been crafted in a way, which will invigorate the Mt. Cheeseman ski area.
An Alpine Renewal
An alpine renewal will let people absorb themselves completely in the club field culture, which is truly unique and an impressive picture of the alpine region. The design comprises cedar slates that make it possible for the exterior of the building to form a beautiful bond with the immediate environment. This connection is possible because the cedar slates have been fitted thoughtfully in a vertical as well as horizontal manner. The presence of active and passive systems makes the building quite energy efficient. The eco friendly design has been achieved by making good use of natural elements, which include earth, water, snow and sun.

The Breathing Office by Creative Studio 'breathes' to save energy

People are migrating from rural regions to urban areas for the availability of various needs like jobs, transport, luxury etc. This migration along with population growth is also increasing the use of air-conditioners in offices and homes, which automatically increases energy demand and hence emissions resulting from the same. In order to provide a better solution for this issue, Creative Inc., the Indonesia based design studio has proposed a green concept. Titled as 'The Breathing Office', this concept describes an architectural design of an office, which utilizes natural air effectively to provide the required ventilation and to maintain an optimum temperature inside.

Lakside Condominiums proposal for Austin relies on solar power

 Located at the junction of Townlake and Shoal Creek, this green structure has a whole array of amenities for its residents. The complex is integrated counterclockwise and has been planned by the architect Erik Leitner. The demand for developed downtown residences in Austin is quite high right now and these lakeside condominiums with a well planned layout are just what the people in the area need.
Lakside Condominiums
The project boasts of several environmentally friendly elements. Apart from vertical expansion and efficient space utilization, the project utilizes all possible resources optimally. Natural ventilation has been incorporated and natural day light has also been utilized to the fullest. Photovoltaics have been installed to harness solar power. Keeping in mind water conservation, facilities like rainwater collection as well as irrigation have been included. Native and drought tolerant plants have been given preference.

Monday, May 28, 2012

God's Igloo: Eco friendly Church made entirely of ice

Have you ever thought how pure, the white occasion of Christmas would have been if everything were to be white as snow?! Well then, if you have not, come to the God’s Igloo, a huge Church built of nothing but snow at Mitterfirmiansreut. Its hugeness can be described by the fact that it is 65 feet tall and bags a record quantum of 49,000 cubic feet of snow. It is a total marvel that has attracted the attention of thousands of people around. And most remarkably, it has been named, quite appropriately, God’s Igloo.

Will future architecture do more than just provide living and working space?

Architecture today
The planet’s limited space and our expanding population have left us literally battling for a piece of land to call our own. Areas that were virtually uninhabited a few decades earlier are currently seeing flourishing populations so much that Antarctic could very well be the only place on earth with no human settlements, barring a few researchers and scientists. This lack of space has led architects to come up with structures like skyscrapers as they don’t use much of land area. Towns and cities that once saw sprawling homes and offices are now settling for vertical structures that can accommodate a substantial number of people without compromising on space.
Future architecture

Valley Effect: Futuristic design for greener living

When it comes to environment, the efforts for a greener future should begin at home. But, do we have enabling infrastructure for this purpose? The answer would be no in most of the cases. However, a new city design, if adopted, could make the present compact lives greener than ever. Named as Valley Effect, the new design promises to develop a carbon positive ecosystem of built and natural environments. It tries to achieve the environment-friendliness of natural valleys in a compact urban setting with the help of interconnected towers featuring a unique model of terraced urban farming.

TOPOS: A green and sustainable forum for collaborative social development

 As part of a project, Andrew Emmet has designed a plan for a radically sustainable social forum while keeping the environmentally friendly approach in view. The proposal includes the construction of TOPOS, which is a forum that serves as a private studio, an event park and a co-working office area. Planned to be constructed in Montecito Heights, Los Angeles, TOPOS reflects to be a blend of traditional construction practices and contemporary ecological and aesthetic aspects. This building is designed to programmatically act as a steward to the local ecosystem. It saves its surrounding by strictly remaining dependent on the site-specific materials for its construction.

Sustainable urban dwelling units: Homes for urban poor

 Low cost dwellings that are affordable and sustainable have long been the dream of city planners in urban areas of the developing countries, where many of the urban poor are forced to live on streets or in temporary accommodations. The sustainable urban dwelling unit (SUDU) is one such design that aims at achieving environmental as well as economic sustainability in urban areas of poor African countries like Ethiopia by eliminating dependence on imported and expensive building materials like steel and concrete. Ethiopia has few material and financial resources. With an already booming population that is sure to go up tenfold in the coming years, there will be a further increase in demand for safe shelters for the urban poor.

Friday, May 25, 2012

An environmentally friendly architectural wonder

Many countries, particularly Asian countries, have been trying very hard for developing their economies to stay in today’s competitive world. Their economic condition is improving very fast but it’s also leading to the destruction of the environment. Now is the time to reassess the worth of natural resources. One of the most obtainable natural resources is bamboo. Bamboo grows swiftly and is found all over the planet. There is no qualm that the proficient usage of bamboo will lead to an improved environment around the globe. Best example can be seen in the form of Vietnamese bamboo wing, an architectural marvel made from bamboo in the northern province of Vinh Phuc, which has won the International Architecture Award of the Chicago Athenaeum Museum in the US.

Bamboo Wings

Four excellent examples of carbon negative architecture

There is a burning need to clean up the environment and reduce carbon emissions as fast as possible. Various companies are developing carbon negative technology to trap carbon from the atmosphere. Such investments make priceless contribution to save and protect the planet.

Building a home with 100 percent renewable resources for a sustainable green environment is the need of the hour. Self powered houses are popular since these are the designs for a safe and cleaner future. These houses use the power of natural resources such as wind and sun. The construction materials and methods have the least impact on the environment. Yet, these houses

A new typology of skyscrapers to house birds

 Cities are getting decorated with fancy buildings that have consumed a lot of green cover. These concrete buildings have disturbed natural habitats that has a negative impact on birds and animals. New York is known for its skyscrapers, which have become an identity of the city. But, have we ever contemplated the affect it has on birds that are dying at a fast pace in the New York City? Stone Design, an architecture studio in New York, found out the real reason behind increase in death rate and came up with the Urban Aviary.
Urban Aviary

A massive eco friendly tech hub in NYC

 A state-of-the-art net-zero energy tech hub, NYCTech Campus has been designed by a collaboration of the Technion – Israeli Institute of Technology and the Cornell University for New York City. Both institutes have employed their credentials in green technology to propose the design for an international contest to design a new Applied Sciences Graduate School on Roosevelt Island.
Net-zero energy NYCTech Campus

A sustainable city for the green world of tomorrow

Cities built without planning often resemble chaos while those that are meticulously planned look artificial. There is a need for the city to be a model of harmonious co-existence of natural and man-made elements. And that is the inspiration for the design and development of the Bio Divercity concept for planning and construction of cities. The concept intends to create a biosphere out of the concrete jungles. The challenge in designing the city along the lines of the biosphere would be to retain the individuality of each structure and still make each of them work towards a collective identity and purpose.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Futuristic and eco savvy Basque Culinary Center

Onlookers will be fixed on spot when they lay their eyes on this truly wondrous structure. The horizontally running broad bands look like thickset slabs piled on top of each other. The gigantic size of these slabs will leave you mesmerized. Many feel that the thick bands look like dinner plates stashed one above the other. These bands look even more riveting once they are illuminated. The façade of the building made from graphic metal panels is quite striking.

basque culinary center

Zagreb international airport

 With the increasing environmental awareness, architects from across the globe are coming up with innovative ways to utilize the natural resources in every possible way and save the planet. The Zagreb international airport is one such eco friendly project which aims at green living. It is one of the various types of creative and sustainable architectural buildings and landscapes. Under this project, several tiny campuses will be combined to form a single campus known as the new airport city. The new airport city will be surrounded by forests, fountains and stone-paved plazas. The breathtaking landscape will provide an amazing work environment around the buildings in the campus. There will be a systematic integration that will be put in place in the airport. It will ensure that there is zero motor-vehicle traffic in the campus ground-plane. In other words, the vehicular movement will be kept separate and will not disturb the functioning of the airport activities.
Zagreb international airport

Naver App Square

 Here is a wonderful way Naver is promoting its new image search app for smartphones and tablets. A stock container, dubbed Naver App Square, has been built up using sheets of corrugated cardboard. The South Korean architecture and design firm Urbantainer has constructed this container kiosk with all its interior furniture and accessories made of cardboard.
Naver App Square

Old barn gets new life as a sustainable adobe

 The Blanco residence in Texas is a magnificent green structure with an old age look and no one will be able to guess that there was a barn once in the very same place. Located in Austin, the home has been cCononstructed by Jackson & McElhaney Architects. The coveted design has bagged numerous awards given out by local, state, national and even international organizations.
Converted barn becomes a sustainable masterpiece
The look
A down-to-earth edifice, this green building comprises two stories. It is a simple, snug and comfy home that will charm all onlookers. The house has a commodious 3200 square feet of living area. The kitchen and living room have been built on the second level, while the first floor houses the bedrooms. The house has a total of three bedrooms and two bathrooms, all constructed on the first level. The north and south roofs of the house have dormers fitted in. The view of the countryside from the dormers is simply breathtaking; you can see the scenic hilly slopes of Texas from here. The dormers also keep the house luminous and airy. There is a catwalk connecting the living room to a studio, which is flooded with light.
Green quotient

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Cranbrook festival project

 The Cranbrook performing arts festival project is a yearly celebration conducted by the Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfields Hills, Michigan, USA. The summer festival mainly showcases the group and individual performances and is initiated by the central quad of Cranbrook Academy of Art, founded in 1932 by Finish architect Eliel Saarinen. The performance also provides a unique platform to uphold a greener and more economic option of conducting fair, trade event or exhibitions in open air environment.

Cranbrook Festival Project

Tianhe Mansion Tower

 You might have witnessed various types of creative architectural buildings and landscapes. But, here is a beauty in the form of a lantern tower that would surely capture your attention. Designed to be a landmark, the Tianhe Mansion Tower is developed to be a part of the Guan Yin Qaio district in Chongqing, China. This is a state-of-the-art, high-rise tower that covers an area of around 119,500 square meters. With a total of 66 stories, the Tianhe Mansion Tower is as high as 312 meters. If you are at the top story of this building, you would feel marvelous while glancing at the world around.

Lantern Tower

The blossoming of sustainable community living in Bangladesh

 "Shobuj Pata" stands for 'Green Leaf' in Bengali, the official language of Bangladesh. Shobuj Pata is a habitation project that has been planned for completion by 2015 by one of the largest developers in the country, Rupayan Housing Estate Ltd. It aims at providing its residents the best of modern living combined with green concepts through a sustainable community living. The site plan has provisions for green spaces, courtyards, commercial areas, parks and parking along with a conventional center, school, mosque and a city square housing a market. The idea is to allow the inhabitants to derive the simultaneous experience of a city and nature. With about 2300-2400 dwellings slated to be constructed, the project will easily house about 10,000 occupants.
Eco Community Development

Visage Hotel proposal uses natural resources to the fullest

Neat looking and carefully planned, this hotel is done up in glass and other porous materials. The slanting roof contrasts sharply with the straight lines used below, creating a mesmerizing visual effect. The seating area inside is enclosed by transparent glass walls on all sides, allowing everyone seated inside to enjoy the scenic view that lies around them. The fencing wall of the building has creepers growing on the top half while ample of shrubbery has been planted within the premises of the building. Designed by architects Umit Yetgin Aykac and Oya Saydam, the structure integrates well with its surroundings.

Visage Hotel

Monday, May 21, 2012

Black Hole Research Center

Black holes as a concept of spacetime from where even light cannot escape, has befuddled scientists and enthusiasts for a long time, but this time, the ensnaring allure of this space related mystery has been conceptualized in a symbolic bearing with a tangible structure. Yes, we are talking about the Black Hole Research Center, contrived by none other than Michael Jantzen.

The Black Hole Research Center

Five creative examples of green architecture using old buildings

Architects around the world are trying to incorporate green elements into their creations nowadays. In an urge to fabricate eco friendly buildings, many of them have tried to convert old existing buildings into sustainable ones. Reusing these old buildings and fabricating them by employing green techniques to make them as substantiate as possible also leaves a minimal impact on the environment. The green designers of this era are turning the retrofits of old buildings into possibilities of better approaches to reduce the consumption of energy, water and time, while creatively constructing comfortable and efficient building according to the clients’ requirements. This way of construction is ecological as well as economical. Hit the jump to see five creative examples of green architecture using old buildings.

School building for refugees in Thailand

Children could be our best ambassadors in our fight against all global environment problems. The question is, how do we do this? Architects at the 2bw Studio have shown the way with a unique modular Bamboo School for Myanmarese refugees. The demountable model enures flexibility to relocate the school whenever necessary and the use of bamboo material ensures low cost, less technical dependence and environment friendliness. It sits lightly on the ground and can be easily moved from one place to another as required on a very short notice. The design also provides maximum visual security for children as entire school could be watched from most of the angles.

Bamboo School for Burmese Refugees