Zaha Hadid Architects weaves energy-saving tech into an otherworldly UAE landscape

October 12, 2018 by  
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Zaha Hadid Architects has revealed designs for the Central Hub, a new leisure and entertainment destination for the United Arab Emirates that looks positively out of this world. Marked by swirling pathways and pod-like buildings, the futuristic Central Hub will serve as the focal point for the $6.5 billion Aljada development in Sharjah, the UAE’s third-most populous city. Spanning an area greater than 25 football fields, the 1.9 million-square-foot Central Hub will be entirely car-free and integrate a variety of energy-saving technologies. With Phase One slated for completion in the end of the first quarter of next year, the Central Hub is expected to be the city’s largest mixed-use lifestyle destination. The first phase spans over 328,000 square feet in size and includes the Aljada Community Center; a food truck village; a children’s play area, outdoor activity zone and skate park; outdoor event space for film screenings, pop-up events and markets; as well as Arada’s experiential sales center. The second and third phases of the Central Hub will be completed in 2020 and 2022, respectively, and include more recreational and retail facilities, such as an 11-screen cinema, extreme sports center and an expansive community park . Much like the Aljada masterplan, which is designed with walkability and sustainable systems in mind, the Central Hub is flush with over 700,000 square feet of public squares and gardens that include natural cooling strategies for year-round enjoyment. Inspired by water droplets, the elliptical buildings will also help channel crosswinds into the public spaces. The grounds will be irrigated with recovered and recycled water and planted with native species. Lighting will be powered entirely by smart solar. Related: Zaha Hadid Architects designs robot-assisted vaulted classrooms for China “ Sustainability is absolutely central to Arada’s vision, and that has been reflected in the Central Hub’s design,” said HRH Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal, vice chairman of Arada. “We are working hard to protect and encourage local native species and natural environment. We’re doing this in a way that is cost-efficient and leaves as small an impact on the planet as possible.” + Zaha Hadid Architects Lead image by VA, others by Cosmoscube

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Zaha Hadid Architects weaves energy-saving tech into an otherworldly UAE landscape

London’s first ‘High Line’ park could transform an abandoned railway in Camden Town

July 5, 2017 by  
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New York’s iconic High Line is inspiring other cities to repurpose and green-up disused elevated railway lines. Representing residents, businesses and community groups of Camden Town district in north London, local business group Camden Town Unlimited organized a crowdfunding campaign to help transform a portion of an old railway line connecting Camden Town and King’s Cross into a vibrant green space. The Camden Highline would run for nearly a kilometer, linking the world-famous Camden Market with the recently redeveloped King’s Cross area by a 10-minute walk. Camden Town Unlimited teamed up with Network Rail to figure out the technical feasibility of the project, and is now looking to start construction. Related: Explore 6 High Line-Inspired Copy Cats Changing Cities Across the Globe “People in Camden have been talking about this for years. Now we’re putting our money where our mouth is to make this happen,” said Camden Town Unlimited Chief Executive Simon Pitkeathley about the campaign. “We invite anyone who wants to see a New York-style Highline here in London , whether you live and work in Camden or are a visitor to the area, to donate what you can to help make this idea a reality.” The new crowdfunding campaign will help finance events and workshops aimed at bringing this project to life. It will run for 100 days or whenever it reaches its £40k target. + Camden Highline crowdfunding campaign Via World Architecture News

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London’s first ‘High Line’ park could transform an abandoned railway in Camden Town

This green-roofed cultural center in Sweden doubles as a vibrant public square

June 26, 2017 by  
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This green-roofed cultural center in Sweden blurs the line between the indoors and outdoors. Designed by Sweco Architects , the new Bergsjön Kulturhus grows out from the existing hill and blends with the square to form a unified environment. Sweco Architects won a competition to design a new culture house for Bergsjön, a district in eastern Gothenburg. The architects sought to weave storytelling, knowledge and recreation together like a “basket of possibilities”. An atrium serves as the core of the project, and surrounding spaces hold a library, a café, ateliers, exhibition space , meeting rooms, a studio, a small theater, a greenhouse and multi-use facilities. Related: Iceberg-inspired Greenland cultural center celebrates 20 years of resilience in the Arctic The building’s glass facade creates a visual connection between the interior and the green areas outside. Integrated into the surrounding urban fabric, the cultural center creates a welcoming atmosphere and functions as a social arena that fosters interaction. + Sweco Architects Images by Sofia Kourbetis, Linda Hansson

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This green-roofed cultural center in Sweden doubles as a vibrant public square

New York City unveils massive green-roofed film and fashion hub in Brooklyn

February 23, 2017 by  
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Two warehouses in Brooklyn ‘s Sunset Park will soon be transformed into state-of-the-art, affordable production spaces for film, television production and garment manufacturing. The green-roofed Made in NY Campus, designed by WXY architecture + urban design , will modernize the industrial waterfront site and create several pedestrian-friendly spaces and public plazas. Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the City’s commitment to the $136 million overhaul expected to create 1,500 jobs. Conceived by the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC), the project will include a comprehensive planning and investment strategy aiming to renovate the site’s aging infrastructure and introduce quality manufacturing and public spaces . WXY architecture + urban design re-envisioned two existing warehouses and public spaces at Sunset Park as a new green-roofed film and fashion hub with 300,000 square feet of new production spaces. Related: New photos reveal Domino Sugar Refinery’s terraced form rising on the East River The Made in NY Campus will offset the city’s lack of filming spaces and provide high-ceiling sound spaces and various other production areas, along with new facilities for fashion and garment manufacturing industry. It will be one of three business campuses in the new Sunset Park District Plan, including the renovated Brooklyn Army Terminal to be completed this fall. + WXY architecture + urban design Renderings by nightnurse images

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The Picnic Project regenerates an industrial mining site into a bucolic mixed-use space

December 9, 2016 by  
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This pastoral vision of the northwest lignite mining area of Ptolemaida in Greece transforms the former industrial site into a sustainable, mixed-use development that combines agriculture, recreation and tourism. Architects Leonidas Papalampropoulos and Georgia Syriopoulou designed and presented the regeneration project in the style reminiscent of the early 20th century Garden City movement, pioneered by Ebenezer Howard, which is based on a radial network of patterns with open spaces, public parks and agricultural estates.   The project aims to deal with the industrial heritage of the site by introducing new management procedures and “re-instating [a] romantic” vision in order to create a new relationship between the user and the landscape. The team proposes the formation of a new archaeological site with exhibitions of industrial artifacts inside the former quarry. Three dams would be constructed along the stream in order to control its flow, form three water reservoirs for swimming during summer, and facilitate the development of a hydro-biotope. Related: Sugarhouse Studios Pop-Up Cinema & Workshop Encourages Community Interaction in London In attempting to re-appropriate the natural environment, three techniques would be used along the water path. The first would focus on exploiting the existing remote heating infrastructure to create a greenhouse -swimming pool. The second focuses of establishing botanical rooms, while the third would introduce urban residential environments. + Papalampropoulos Syriopoulou Architecture Bureau

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A simple town house transformed into a playful kindergarten in Vietnam

January 28, 2016 by  
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Olson Kundig-designed lush public park hides itself in plain sight – on the ninth floor of a department store in South Korea

August 21, 2015 by  
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New carbon nanofiber process could reduce atmospheric C02 to pre-industrial levels in just a decade

August 21, 2015 by  
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Imagine being able to turn pollution into something useful while returning the planet to pre-industrial carbon levels in just ten years. Scientists believe that it’s possible: a new process developed by team at George Washington University could manufacture the fibers using carbon dioxide extracted from Earth’s atmosphere – talk about a win/win for everyone. The double-whammy discovery could help tackle climate change , while revolutionizing many industries. According to Gizmag , carbon nanofibers could one day be used for everything from building better bulletproof vests to fixing damaged hearts, not to mention making a big dent in climate change.   Read the rest of New carbon nanofiber process could reduce atmospheric C02 to pre-industrial levels in just a decade

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New study confirms global warming is making California’s drought worse

August 21, 2015 by  
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Climate scientists have been keeping a close eye on the years-long drought plaguing California , looking for clues that might suggest how to cope with or even reverse the drought conditions. Although droughts occur from time to time over the course of history as part of natural cycles, scientists said Thursday that global warming has had a direct and severe impact on the current drought , making it much more severe than it might be otherwise. And, of course, the droughts aren’t the only consequence of human-caused climate change. Read the rest of New study confirms global warming is making California’s drought worse

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The Skip Garden: a moveable urban veggie patch built with 90% reclaimed materials

July 24, 2015 by  
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