Singapore’s jaw-dropping new airport has the world’s largest indoor waterfall

June 21, 2017 by  
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Air travel is usually a nightmare, but Singapore’s new Jewel Changi Airport extension is taking the sting out of the experience with a lush jungle and the world’s largest indoor waterfall. The 131-foot-tall waterfall, conceived by water design firm WET and Safdie Architects , will be the centerpiece of “Forest Valley,” a lush indoor garden nestled under a large glass dome. The waterfall, dubbed the Rain Vortex, will be housed in a huge glass toroid, and will fall though the hole in the middle of the structure. At night, choreographed light shows will make the waterfall glow, illuminating the interior in an array of different colors. Related: World’s Largest Outdoor Pool to be Built Within a Canal in Japan The architects and engineers conducted a series of airflow studies on the glass dome in order to prevent the buildup of humid air that would naturally occur around this amount of falling water. The team came up with a solution that alters the way turbulence affects the surrounding air. Several built models helped determine the behavior of the design. The 134,000 square meter addition to Singapore‘s main airport is expected to wow travelers with an environment unlike any other. It is currently under construction, expecting completion in early 2019. + WET Design + Safdie Architects Via Archdaily

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Singapore’s jaw-dropping new airport has the world’s largest indoor waterfall

Peek inside Bloombergs sustainable new headquarters in London

June 21, 2017 by  
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Former Mayor of New York City Michael R. Bloomberg’s eponymous company is moving into the heart of London with the help of Foster + Partners . The renowned British architecture firm designed the new 3.2-acre Bloomberg site with approximately 500,000 square feet of sustainable office space illuminated with natural light and naturally ventilated with a large living green wall. Set to open this autumn, Bloomberg’s new European headquarters focuses on the creation of healthy, collaborative workspaces. “Our people are our most important asset,” said Bloomberg in a statement. “I wanted to create a unique, sustainable building where our 4,000 London employees would come to work every morning inspired to connect, collaborate and innovate. I believe in openness. This building takes that to a new level – there’s nothing like it in the world.” In addition to office space, the new Bloomberg headquarters will include two public plazas featuring custom art, a restaurant arcade built upon an ancient Roman travel route, and a cultural hub that links the ancient Roman Temple of Mithras to its original site. Related: First Apple Store in Southeast Asia is 100% powered by renewable energy The interior features open-plan layouts connected with a spiral ramp spanning seven floors in the nine-story building. An atrium ceiling funnels light deep into the building. Workspaces feature bespoke desk designs arranged in circular pods around a central table to promote collaborative working. Each desk also has an adjustable standing feature and upholstered pedestal to allow people to sit and work side by side. The building’s central hub on the sixth floor features a double-height column-free “pantry” with views of St Paul’s Cathedral and functions as a space for impromptu meetings over food and drink. + Foster + Partners Images by dbox, ChopsMoxie, and Foster + Partners

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Peek inside Bloombergs sustainable new headquarters in London

Cleverly layered compact dirt walls mimic ice cream cakes in this Tokyo patisserie

June 21, 2017 by  
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Dirt may seem an odd material choice for an upscale patisserie in Tokyo , but design studio nendo playfully pulls it off with style. The Japanese designers layered compacted soils of varying colors to mimic the layers of an ice cream cake. The earth walls lend the “à tes souhaits!” shop a sense of warmth and contrast beautifully with the glass-and-steel facade. Located in the trendy Kichijoji neighborhood in Tokyo, à tes souhaits! is a small and elegant shop specializing in ice cream and chocolates . The earth walls comprise stacked soils of varying shades arranged in a staggered pattern to look like cut slices of ice cream cake with different flavors. “The wall guides people into the shop by the soft curvature from the outer wall, and then creates a gentle all-enveloping effect, like melted ice cream, all the way into the back of the shop,” writes nendo. “This created a relaxing ambience, taking advantage of the compactness of the space.” Related: Ancient Japanese tombs inspire nendo’s first public space design Since the new patisserie is the second location of à tes souhaits!, Nendo wanted to differentiate the two shops. The flagship uses bright lighting with mostly white surfaces and hard materials like marble and metal. In contrast, the new location uses a subdued color palette and softer lighting to complement the dominant use of wood and soil . + Nendo Images by Takumi Ota

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Cleverly layered compact dirt walls mimic ice cream cakes in this Tokyo patisserie

San Francisco is too expensive – so this couple hit the road in an amazing renovated van

June 14, 2017 by  
Filed under Business, Green

After just four months of dating, San Francisco residents Juliana and Richmond grew weary of the city’s shockingly high real estate scene. So they decided to convert a 15-year-old Sprinter Van into 50 square feet of custom-built living space, with a recessing mechanical bed, hidden storage and a stowable tabletop. The couple spent months creating their home on wheels – lovingly called Home Sweet Van – and then they set off to explore the world. After buying the old van, the couple went to work by gutting the interior before adding new wood paneling, seating with hidden storage, and even a mechanical bed that rises on rails to the ceiling height, providing more space when not in use. Related: Living out of a van has never looked this good The traveling duo parks the converted van in various places while on the road such as local campgrounds, national forest lands, and, of course, the always popular Walmart parking lots. Although the Home Sweet Van unfortunately does not have a bathroom or shower, the couple has learned to plan their day accordingly, “You get used to planning your day around, ‘where am I going to go [to the bathroom] in the morning and where am I going to go at night,’” Richmond explained. The couple recently returned from exploring North America, but once again, have found it difficult to park in peace in their hometown of San Francisco. Now, they’re living in Oregon. If you are interested in building your own van, the couple has a digital book packed full of tips. + Home Sweet Van Via Business Insider

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San Francisco is too expensive – so this couple hit the road in an amazing renovated van

New self-driving electric RoboBuses are launching in Finland this year

June 14, 2017 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

The world is becoming increasingly automated, and a new self-driving bus in Finland is evidence of this. Beginning in the fall of 2017, the Finnish capital will launch a new autonomous electric “RoboBusLine.” According to the City of Helsinki the line “represents a shift from an experimental phase to regular, scheduled public transit service with self-driving buses.” Not only will the self-driving vehicles reduce the costs of transportation and improve access to public transit – they will also reduce the amount of cars that are on the road and slash emissions. In August of 2016, the Sohjoa project (an EU-financed initiative by the six largest cities in Finland, Finnish universities and transportation authorities) launched two EasyMile EZ10 electric minibuses in Helsinki. Reportedly, the initiative is part of the EU-financed mySMARTLife program, in which European cities are encouraged to develop energy-efficient mobility to reduce energy consumption in cities by 10-15 percent. So far, the electric minibuses have been tested in real traffic conditions – and they will continue to be monitored in urban areas until August 2017. Each bus has an operator on board in case of an emergency and travels at about 7 mph (11 km per hour), learning the route and accruing knowledge as it transits . Said Sohjoa project manager, Oscar Nissin of Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, “We focus on a number of aspects including sensor technology, user experience, and how to complement overall public transit services with self-driving buses.” Once the self-driving trials are complete, the Finnish cities of Espoo and Tampere will launch the buses to shuttle passengers from Helsinki’s Mustikkamaa recreational Island to Helsinki Zoo. Project leader and Metropolia’s smart mobility program director, Harri Santamala, explained that the “RoboBus will allow us to test operation in everyday public transit conditions. It will be used to study the long-term operability of self-driving buses and customer behavior. Related: The world’s first self-driving grocery store just hit the streets of Shanghai Finland is an ideal location for a self-driving bus to launch, as the country’s law does not state that a vehicle has to have a driver. Additionally, autonomous buses could offer a solution to a persistent problem in Helsinki: transporting riders from a regular public transit stop to their homes. A press release says, “Automated, remote-controlled bus service could markedly reduce the costs of the last-mile service and improve access to public transit . The ultimate goal is to increase public transit use and so to reduce cars and needs to drive in the city.” Because the electric minus is in a competitive bid process, the route, its launch date, and schedule will be announced at a later time. + Helsinkin RoboBusLine Image via Helsinkin RoboBusLine

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New self-driving electric RoboBuses are launching in Finland this year

Set up camp anywhere with Latvia’s luxurious Camping Box

May 30, 2017 by  
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Camping just got a lot more glamorous with the Camping Box , a modular eco-friendly box that’s super easy to set up. InBoxLifestyle designed the creative tent or camper alternative, and their 97-square-foot box can house four people comfortably. The Latvia -based company says their Camping Box allows campers to escape into nature while feeling like they’re staying at a fancy hotel . The Camping Box is about what it sounds like: a box you can set up just about anywhere and sleep or cook inside while camping. But these innovative dwellings are designed to be a step up from your standard camper or tent; according to the company, they provide “high class hotel benefits in the middle of nowhere.” Related: Sublime tiny cabins in British Columbia that can be installed within hours The modular boxes are easy to maintain and move. They’re made of fiberglass , and are rain and snow resistant. They can also be popped up without project approval. They don’t take up a lot of space, so could be tucked into a corner of a backyard or forest. InBoxLifestyle says their Camping Boxes will last for years, and are nature friendly. The design of the company’s boxes is energy efficient thanks to what they describe as the latest generation ventilation and heating system. The boxes can be connected to the grid or water and sewage systems. But InBoxLifestyle does say on their website that boxes in remote locations can have an individual solution for water and sewage. InBoxLifestyle offers multiple floor plans for their Camping Box, including ones for two or four people, ones with kitchens, bathrooms, or showers, and even a sauna and Jacuzzi box. Prices for the four-person option start at $13,416.60. The company works with clients to design the interior according to what amenities a person wants inside their Camping Box. The Camping Box isn’t the only modular box setup InBoxLifestyle offers. They offer a Gym Box, Kitchen Box, and Office Box, to name a few. Check out more on their website . + InBoxLifestyle Images via InBoxLifestyle ( 1 , 2 ) and screenshots

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Set up camp anywhere with Latvia’s luxurious Camping Box

Leaked Tesla document confirms Model 3 with 215+ mile range

May 30, 2017 by  
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Tesla hasn’t released all the official performance specs for the upcoming Model 3 sedan, but a leaked dealer document just gave away a lot of the juicy details. A member of the Tesla Model 3 Owners Club recently came across a dealer product sheet that compares the specs for the Model S to the Model 3 – effectively revealing the Model 3’s driving range and other performance specs. Rather than promote the Model 3, the leaked document looks more like a way to educate Tesla’s sales staff about ways to sell the Model S over the Model 3. It points out many of the Model 3’s shortcomings compared to the flagship Model S, but either way, we now know that the Model 3 will have a 215+ mile driving range. That driving range puts it just a tad below the Chevy Bolt, but miles ahead of any other electric car in its price range. Related: Tesla is taking some major risks by accelerating production of Model 3 The leaked document also reveals that the Model 3 will be able to reach 60 mph in 5.6 seconds, which is definitely slower than the Model S P100D Ludicrous, but still faster than some sports cars. The Model 3 will also have a modestly sized front and rear trunk space with 14 cubic feet of cargo space, about half the space that the Model S has. Lastly, while the Model S has over 1,500 configurations, the Model 3 will only have about 100 and many of the premium features, like a Smart Air Suspension or HEPA filter won’t even be available on the Model 3. The Model 3 will also not have free access to Tesla’s Supercharger network, like the Model S and instead it will be “pay per use.” If you were to put a deposit down on a Model 3 today, you will have to wait more than a year before production even starts, which means meaning you won’t get your Model 3 until mid-2018. + Tesla Via Model 3 Owners Club and Inside EVs Images @Tesla

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Leaked Tesla document confirms Model 3 with 215+ mile range

Nomadic bookseller travels all over France with his tiny library on wheels

May 30, 2017 by  
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We’ve seen a number of tiny home constructions put to all sorts of good use, but this French nomadic library on wheels is très chic . Built by tiny home specialists La Maison Qui Chemine , the Librairie Itinérante (traveling bookstore) is a custom-made tiny home built for an altruistic bookseller who travels the all over France delivering books to small villages that don’t have their own libraries or bookshops. The tiny home was designed for Jean-Jacques, who travels around the country in his library on wheels bringing books to hopeful bibliophiles. He often travels from festival to festival, but when stationary, he hosts free readings in the evenings. The event is open to anyone who brings their own slippers. Related: London’s only floating bookshop finally has a permanent home While most tiny home designs focus on being lightweight for easy travel, this building had to be specially outfitted to carry the estimated 700 pounds of books it carries on the interior. To make sure that the some 3,000 books stay in place while on the road, thick curtains were installed at the top of each shelf, which, when secured shut, wrap around the bookshelves tightly, creating a secure, fall-proof system. The tiny home also doubles as a home for the wandering bookseller. There is a small kitchen and a sleeping loft that is reached by a ladder. In the corner, surrounded by the bookshelves, is a quaint reading space with a custom-made table. The small bathroom has a composting toilet , but, per Jean-Jacques’ request, there is no plumbing installed in the structure. + La Maison Qui Chemine Via Treehugger Images via La Maison Qui Chemine

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Nomadic bookseller travels all over France with his tiny library on wheels

First Apple Store in Southeast Asia is 100% powered by renewable energy

May 30, 2017 by  
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This weekend, Singapore welcomed its first Apple store in a beautiful glass-fronted building that blends minimalist design with nature. Designed by Foster + Partners and Apple, this long-awaited flagship store—called Apple Orchard Road—takes cues from Singapore’s lush environment and features mature trees inside and outside the shop. Home to the world’s largest Genius Grove, Apple Orchard Road is considered one of Foster + Partners’ “greenest Apple spaces yet” and is entirely powered by renewable energy. Welcomed with extreme fanfare and a ten-hour-long, 2,000-person queue, Apple Orchard Road is the first official Apple Store in Southeast Asia . The two-story building is located in the heart of the Singapore, known as the garden city, along tree-lined Orchard Road. Inspired by the city’s garden themes, the designers crafted the building with a strong focus on community and connection to nature. Eight mature trees were planted in front of the store to create a shaded “green orchard” that serves as a new public gathering space. The 120-foot wide glazed storefront blurs the boundaries between inside and outside, an illusion strengthened by the installation of mature trees within the shop. A thin, white canopy cantilevers out 25 feet to provide solar shading . Related: Watch Apple’s incredible new store in Dubai change shape before your eyes “This is one of our greenest Apple spaces yet – not only does all the energy come from renewable sources, but it is filled with lush trees,” said Stefan Behling, Head of Studio, Foster + Partners. “It also breaks down the boundaries between the inside and outside, with the greenery cascading through the store from the mezzanine to the ground floor and out to onto Orchard Road, creating the most welcoming civic gesture.” Beautiful curved staircases hand-carved from Castagna stone by Italian artisans frame the interior. The world’s largest Genius Grove on the mezzanine contains twelve Ficus Ali trees. The Forum, which serves as a gathering place for Creative Pros, also boasts Apple’s widest video screen in the world. + Foster + Partners Images © Nigel Young and Apple

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First Apple Store in Southeast Asia is 100% powered by renewable energy

Solar-powered EarthCruiser camper expands at the push of a button

May 24, 2017 by  
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Even experienced road warriors need some extra space now and then. Thankfully, the roof of the new EarthCruiser EXP expands at the push of a button, offering more space and more light. The expedition vehicle is basically the Swiss Army Knife of campers, offering a solar power array and a variety of features that make living on the road a much more enjoyable experience. Whether used as a cabin for a quick weekend getaway or a permanent off-grid home, the EarthCruiser EXP design is meant to provide the ultimate in comfort and reliability. The imposing truck 4X4 chassis gives the vehicle a strong, sturdy body that is, according to the company, “nearly unbreakable.” Although, at just 257 inches wide, it can be easily parked, and even fits into a standard shipping container for easy shipping around the world. The vehicle is made of a lightweight, but strong fiberglass-composite that provides ultra insulating properties, making it especially useful for off-grid living . Related: Futuristic Nimbus E-Car is a cute hybrid microbus perfect for the eco-conscious road warrior The expandable rooftop opens upwards a full 24 inches to provide extra room on the interior. Surrounded by windows, the extended roof helps flood the interior space with natural light. For charging needs, a two-panel solar array is installed on the roof and provides plenty of energy for the vehicle’s electronics. The solar-powered battery can be used for up to 10-days, but if the energy level drops below 50%, an alarm will sound. This system was designed to eliminate the need for a portable generator. The vehicle is also equipped with an advanced water-purification system that allows users to collect clean, safe drinking water from almost any source such as a creek or lake. + EarthCruiser Via Techeblog Images via EarthCruiser

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Solar-powered EarthCruiser camper expands at the push of a button

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