UNStudio installs new energy-generating facade for solar producer Hanwhas HQ

May 4, 2020 by  
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UNStudio has completed renovations of the Hanwha headquarters in Seoul — all without disrupting the building’s normal business operations. The impressive feat was achieved thanks to efficient and low-impact construction methods that the international design firm dubs “remodeling in place.” In addition to renovated interior spaces and a redesigned landscape , the Hanwha headquarters is now home to a completely new, energy-generating facade with integrated solar panels to express the company’s identity as an ambitious global leader in the solar panel industry.  Located along the Cheonggyecheon in Seoul , the 57,696-square-meter Hanwha headquarters building had been suffering from a disconnect between its dated appearance and the company’s desire to be seen as a leading environmental technology provider. UNStudio won a competition to lead the redesign along with sustainability and facade consultant Arup and landscape design firm Loos van Vilet. Critical to the redesign was the replacement of the original facade, which included horizontal bands of opaque paneling and single-paneled dark glass. The new facade features clear, insulated glass with aluminum framing and integrated solar panels. Related: MVRDV to transform Seoul’s concrete-dominated waterfront into a vibrant, green oasis The renovation takes inspiration from nature and the surrounding environment. For example, the facade opens up along the north side to enable daylighting while the southern facade is more opaque to mitigate unwanted solar gain. The openings in the facade and the placement of facade panels also respond to views and the programs within the rooms. The solar panels are placed on the opaque panels on the south and southeastern facade and are angled for optimal solar harvesting. Glazing has also been positioned to reduce direct solar impact. “By means of a reductive, integrated gesture, the facade design for the Hanwha HQ implements fully inclusive systems, which significantly impact the interior climate of the building, improve user comfort and ensure high levels of sustainability and affordability,” Ben van Berkel, founder of UNStudio, said. “Through fully integrated design strategies, today’s facades can provide responsive and performative envelopes that both contextually and conceptually react to their local surroundings, whilst simultaneously determining interior conditions.” + UNStudio Photography by Rohspace via UNStudio

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UNStudio installs new energy-generating facade for solar producer Hanwhas HQ

Relax and unwind in this tiny home with a walk-in hot tub

May 4, 2020 by  
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From climbing walls to a roaming music studio , we’ve seen a lot of ingenious tiny house features over the years. But this tiny home on wheels from Movable Roots has a distinct feature we never thought was possible — a walk-in hot tub! The Culp is a 500-square-foot home that, in addition to its accessible, spa-like bathroom, boasts unique cork flooring and an incinerating toilet. Based in Melbourne, Florida, Movable Roots has already made a name for itself as a leading builder of tiny homes. But The Culp is sure to rocket the company to sheer tiny home stardom. The 500-square-foot tiny home on wheels features a two-tone metal exterior that was chosen for its low-maintenance properties. The entrance is through a screened-in porch, which is a relaxing outdoor space to take in some fresh air while sipping a cup of coffee, a glass of wine or a refreshing mint julep. Related: This tiny home on wheels features a cool laundry chute Inside, the interior design is modern and fresh. Comprised of white walls with plank-style cork flooring throughout, the living space has subtle gold and aqua accents that add character. The living room has enough space for a couch, which sits across from a low-lying gas fireplace and a flat-screen television mounted on the wall. A galley kitchen with standard-sized appliances is on one end, while the master bedroom is on the back end of the tiny home . Across from the kitchen, there is a set of stairs along the wall. These stairs lead up to dual loft spaces and double as storage. Spacious and naturally lit, the two lofts can be customized as guest rooms, offices or additional storage areas. In between the living room and the bedroom is the impressive bathroom. At the request of the client, the designers were able to make room for a walk-in hot tub — a feature not often seen in tiny homes. In addition to this soaking tub, the bathroom was also installed with an incinerating toilet, which eliminates the need for blackwater plumbing. + Movable Roots Via Tiny House Talk Images via Movable Roots

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Relax and unwind in this tiny home with a walk-in hot tub

LEED Silver museum’s shimmering, iridescent facade evokes flames in Kansas

October 2, 2018 by  
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When Boston-based architecture practice Verner Johnson was tapped to design the $17.3 million Museum at Prairiefire in Overland Park, Kansas, it saw an opportunity to push back against the area’s new suburban sprawl with a site-specific project. Drawing from the region’s landscape history and their experience with museum design, the architects crafted a building that brings the prairie fires of the American Great Plains to life with a striking flame-inspired facade made with dichroic glass. The composite glass also doubles as insulation, which aided the energy-efficient museum in achieving LEED Silver status. Opened in May 2014, the Museum at Prairiefire was created through a collaborative effort with the American Museum of Natural History. The stunning building houses exhibitions on topics of natural science and history in three primary locations — The Great Hall, The Discovery Room and the American Museum of Natural History Exhibition Gallery — in a total area of 41,500 square feet. The museum design references the prairie landscape and prairie fires through the selection of materials. Five types of locally sourced Kansas limestone were used as cladding to evoke striated rock formations. The cladding was applied to the building wings that were contoured to mimic the shape of rolling hills. To allude to fire, the architects used Light Interference Color (LIC) stainless steel metal panels and insulated dichroic glass developed exclusively for the project to create a striking curtain wall for the museum lobby. At different angles and times of day, the dichroic glass appears to change color from blue to gold, flickering like flames. Related: Energy-savvy art museum is anchored atop a historic Dutch dike “The project’s LEED Silver Certification attests to its environmentally sound design and construction practices, echoing the architectural concept rooted in sustainability — the preservation of the tallgrass prairie ecosystem,” the architects said. “This design does not accept and conform to the shortcomings of suburban sprawl. It defines the environment’s unique identity, forges emotional connections between the people and the place and allows the suburb to become a proud, independent and sustainable community.” + Verner Johnson Via ArchDaily Exterior images via David Arbogast, interior images via Michael Robinson

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LEED Silver museum’s shimmering, iridescent facade evokes flames in Kansas

Energy-conscious library that doubles as a living room breaks ground in Shanghai

October 4, 2017 by  
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Shanghai is adding yet another futuristic building to its modern skyline. The Chinese megacity just broke ground on the Shanghai East Library, a new public library that will serve 4 million visitors a year and be much more than a repository for millions of books. Designed by Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects , the massive 115,000-square-meter library will be a state-of-the-art, energy-conscious facility that feels like a shared “living room” with diverse programming. In 2016, Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects won an international competition to design the Shanghai East Library, and recently released new renderings to commemorate last week’s groundbreaking. The library will be located in Pudong next to Century Park, the city’s largest park, and will be surrounded by landscaped courtyards and gardens. The library comprises a monolithic trapezoidal volume that appears to float above the tree canopy as well as two lower pavilions that house a 1,000-seat performance venue, exhibition and events space, and a dedicated children’s library. “The Shanghai Library client had a vision for the library – the future of the library should be a space for inspiration, learning, exchange and creation. Throughout the design process we have followed the same goals and beliefs in what we felt the library should be, that we wanted to create a building that focused on people and create spaces that are interconnected and inclusive. The aim is to create a building that feels like a second home for the citizens of Shanghai,” said Chris Hardie, Partner at Schmidt Hammer Lassen. “Creating a building of this size is an enormous challenge. The complexity of program spaces required in a new modern library such as this goes far beyond being simply a container for physical books. As we always believe a new modern library should be, we envisage this will become a ‘living room’ for Shanghai’s citizens bringing them new learning and cultural experiences binding them closer to their own city and the world.” Related: Schmidt Hammer Lassen breaks ground on LEED Gold-seeking incubator in Shanghai The library is continuously clad in clear, insulated, and fritted glass organized in horizontal bands of varying transparency to evoke the image of striated rock. These alternating bands of transparent, semi-transparent, and insulated glass let in natural light while controlling solar gain. A grand central atrium forms the heart of the library and is flanked by three staggered reading rooms that open the building up to outdoor views. The modern library will offer both paper and digital reading and, as expected of Shanghai, will be highly integrated with technology. The building will serve as a resource center, knowledge exchange center, technology experience center, think tank, and international communication platform. The library is expected to open to the public by the end of 2020. + Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects Images via Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects

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Energy-conscious library that doubles as a living room breaks ground in Shanghai

Stark White Townhouse in Sweden Stands in Defiant Contrast with Its Stoic Neighbors

August 9, 2011 by  
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Read the rest of Stark White Townhouse in Sweden Stands in Defiant Contrast with Its Stoic Neighbors Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Daylighting , eco design , elding oscarson , green design , insulated glass , Landskrona , natural lighting , rooftop courtyard , small fooprint , sustainable design , Sweden , townhouse

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Stark White Townhouse in Sweden Stands in Defiant Contrast with Its Stoic Neighbors

Molo Employee Tests Indoor Emergency Softshelter Made From Expandable Paper

August 9, 2011 by  
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Read the rest of Molo Employee Tests Indoor Emergency Softshelter Made From Expandable Paper Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “sustainable architecture” , accordion wall , disaster shelter , eco design , emergency , emergency relief , emergency shelter , green architecture , Green Building , green design , humanitarian design , Molo , molo design , natural disasters , paper emergency shelter , paper shelter , Paper Wall , pop-up shelter , Softshelter , softwall , Sustainable Building

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Molo Employee Tests Indoor Emergency Softshelter Made From Expandable Paper

Simulation Shows Towing an Entire Iceberg to Drought-Stricken Areas is Feasible

August 9, 2011 by  
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In the 1970′s, Georges Mougin was laughed at when he suggested that we should start towing icebergs from the polar ice caps to drought-ridden communities around the world to provide sources of fresh drinking water . Now, thanks to complex computer modeling, Mougin’s idea has been proven feasible — and he’s currently trying to raise money to make it a reality. The project will cost a whopping $10 million to tow a 30 million ton iceberg from Newfoundland to the Canary Islands . Beyond the monetary expense, we can’t help but think of all the fuel needed to move such an immense mass of ice – and we certainly don’t think this is the best way to provide clean drinking water to drought affected people. Read the rest of Simulation Shows Towing an Entire Iceberg to Drought-Stricken Areas is Feasible Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: african drought , drought in africa , drought problems , drought solutions , feed africa , glacier melting , how to fix a drought , moving glaciers , moving icebergs

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Simulation Shows Towing an Entire Iceberg to Drought-Stricken Areas is Feasible

New Study Shows That Bike Sharing Programs Actually Save Lives

August 9, 2011 by  
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We have long touted the benefits and general awesomeness of bike sharing. Not only are bikes a cheap and easy way to zip around cities, but swapping a pedal-powered two-wheeler for a gas-guzzling car is one of the easiest ways to curb carbon emissions and make our world a greener place. But now we have an even better reason to promote bike sharing : they actually save lives. A new study published by the British Medical Journal looked at Barcelona’s bike sharing program and found that the benefits of bike shares contributed to 12 less deaths every year. Read the rest of New Study Shows That Bike Sharing Programs Actually Save Lives Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Barcelona , barcelona bike share program , bicing , bicycling , bike share , bike share programs , bike sharing program , bike sharing saves lives , bikes , biking , british medical journal , green transportation , sustainable transportation

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New Study Shows That Bike Sharing Programs Actually Save Lives

Astounding Phase-Change Windows

June 22, 2010 by  
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A remarkable new glazing system has been available in Europe for several years and is now being brought to the North American market. The GlassX window is an insulated glass assembly that incorporates a phase-change material (PCM) between two of the glass panes in the window

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Astounding Phase-Change Windows

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