Green-roofed house for a pilot looks like a temporarily grounded aircraft

February 27, 2017 by  
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This unique home for a young pilot and his family in South Korea looks like an aircraft that has been grounded. Appropriately called the Flying House, it was designed by IROJE KHM Architects , who drew inspiration from traditional Korean architecture to create a delicate balance between sky and land. The architects combined the elements of yard, garden and rumaru, a traditional courtyard with a canopy , to create a space which connects the ground to the roof surface. The resulting sloped roof garden allows the house to coexist with nature, with a flowing design that establishes a strong connection to the ground. Related: IROJE KHM’s green-roofed house in Seoul blooms like a flower A limited budget influenced the choice of materials. By leaving the concrete framework surfaces exposed, the architects managed to utilize the structural material as the finishing material and lower the total construction cost of the building. + IROJE KHM Architects Via Archdaily Photos by Sergio Pirrone

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Green-roofed house for a pilot looks like a temporarily grounded aircraft

South Korea unveils plan for near-supersonic hyper-tube train

January 19, 2017 by  
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Transportation that moves close to the speed of sound could be a reality in South Korea before too long. The country’s government-run Korea Railroad Research Institute (KRRI) is working on their own super-speedy Hyperloop -esque train that could travel as fast as 1,000 kilometers per hour, or around 621 miles per hour, and they say it will be ready in the “not-too-distant future.” South Korea’s near-supersonic train could rocket travelers between Seoul and Busan, a trip that currently takes about 50 minutes by plane or over five hours on public transportation, in a snappy half hour. A KRRI spokesperson said, “We hope to create an ultra-fast train, which will travel inside a state-of-the-art low-pressure tube at lighting speeds, in the not-too-distant future. To that end, we will cooperate with associated institutes as well as Hanyang University to check the viability of various related technologies called the hyper-tube format over the next three years.” Related: The U.S. Air Force just smashed the world record for maglev speed The Korea Times notes that “hyper-tube” technology is akin to the Hyperloop technology first proposed by Elon Musk and currently under development by a couple competing companies. They say the pods rocketing through tubes can fly so fast because there isn’t any friction, that tricky little force slowing regular trains and other traditional forms of transportation. Maglev trains are free of the annoyance of friction, but they still have to battle air resistance. KRRI said it would work with other institutions to solve drawbacks the Hyperloop currently faces, such as threats from terrorism or natural disasters. “Many countries such as the United States, Canada, and China are competing to take the lead in this futuristic technology and we will also try to preempt our global rivals,” said the spokesperson. Via The Korea Times Images via Korea Railroad Research Institute and Wikimedia Commons

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South Korea unveils plan for near-supersonic hyper-tube train

Cramped historic palace in Spain renovated as a light-filled community center

January 19, 2017 by  
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The new Cultural Center Casal Balaguer in Spain’s Palma de Mallorca is a wonderful example of how historic buildings can be adapted into today’s society. Barcelona-based Flores & Prats Architects and local Palma firm Duch-Pizá teamed up to convert the privately-owned 14th century palace into a thriving, light-filled community center. Using the sprawling layout to guide the design, the team created a building plan that would focus on maintaining some of the structure’s original character while injecting some modern-day features. Although the building had undergone various renovations over the years, the architects were determined to maintain as much of its “accumulated” character as possible. Related: Plush green-roofed cultural center replaces 2004 Olympic Games facilities in Athens Due to the cramped location of the palace, the architects had to get creative when it came to renovating the space for public use. Specifically, the rooftop had an especially significant role in the design because the structure is surrounded by narrow alleyways, reducing the possibilities of using large exterior windows to let in natural light. This limitation led the architects to use the roof as a principal design feature , interspersing sloping zinc panels into the typical Spanish ceramic tiles. The asymmetrical style of the roof outline comprised a strategic decision to filter in as much daylight as possible. Keeping in mind the building’s new use as a public space, opening up the interior space and creating clear circulation routes though the building was a priority. Once the rooms were open and spaces defined, various skylights were installed to bring in even more natural light , helping to reduce the building’s energy usage. Unfortunately, the original ceilings were in very bad shape and had to be replaced with exposed wooden beams . The large inverted wooden ceilings enhance the original arched doorways found throughout the gallery spaces and in the library. Inside, a monolithic concrete staircase leads up to the building’s rooftop terrace, letting visitors experience the building in its entirety. + Flores & Prats Architects + Duch-Pizá Via Archdaily Photography by Adrià Goula

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Cramped historic palace in Spain renovated as a light-filled community center

Weird but wonderful Wind House brings whimsy to Koreas Jeju Island

January 19, 2017 by  
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A peculiar home has popped up on Korea’s idyllic Jeju island , and it’s unlike any we’ve seen before. Moon Hoon , a Seoul-based architect who’s never afraid to think outside of the box, recently completed the Wind House, a low-lying structure topped with a large-scale golden sculptural object that bears similarities to a duck head or hairdryer. Despite its alien appearance, the golden protrusion’s shape takes inspiration from the wind-swept landscape, while its golden color alludes to the island’s fall and winter foliage. Moon Hoon, the same architect behind a Star Wars House and the candy-inspired Lollipop House , was commissioned by an eye doctor with a love of contemporary art and a taste for the eccentric. The client tasked Hoon to design three small houses with the requirements that they be unique and functional. The resulting Wind House comprises a volcanic stone wall that runs the perimeter of the site, two low-lying houses that sit at right angles to one another, and a third house in the middle topped with a inhabitable and sculptural space that Hoon describes as “blossom[ing] like a golden flower.” The boxy gray-colored homes draw inspiration from traditional Jeju architecture and provide a sharp contrast to the glistening gold crown. Accessible via a spiral staircase , the duck head-shaped space includes a living room, kitchen, and bedroom. Unlike the other interior spaces, which are painted a demure white and kept relatively minimalist, the interior of the “hovering flower” is painted a vibrant shade of red complemented with black furniture and a zebra print floor. A slit window offers views towards Hallasan, the volcano located at the center of the island. Related: The Force is Strong With This Sandcrawler-Inspired Star Wars House in South Korea “The sharp difference and contrast between the horizontal houses and hovering houses grounded secularly by high volcanic rock walls bring about a kind of contrasting harmony like that of flowers blossoming among the green leaves,” says the architect. Moon Hoon and Tomeny Kisilewicz also produced an unusual five-minute science fiction film that stars the Wind House as the hero that saves the residents of Jeju from the erupting Hallasan. + Moon Hoon Via ArchDaily Images © NamGoong sun

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Weird but wonderful Wind House brings whimsy to Koreas Jeju Island

Dogs raised for meat in South Korea to get forever homes in the US

January 10, 2017 by  
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A group of dogs raised for meat in South Korea are getting a new lease on life. Humane Society International (HSI) has rescued 10 dogs from a dog meat farm located about 55 miles away from Seoul. The dogs, which were raised in filthy, rusty cages for eventual consumption by humans, will be placed in forever homes throughout the US. HSI says it will take time and money to move all 200 animals off the farm, and you can help. Six months of vaccinations, medical examinations, and negotiations later, HSI has finally been able to start removing dogs from the horrifying meat factory farm. It will take a few weeks for them to ship out all the animals, as airlines will only take so many dogs per flight. Dogs like Demi, a labrador mix puppy, will journey to United States shelters and be offered for adoption. Related: Help move hundreds of chimpanzees from labs to a safe haven in Georgia HSI campaign manager Andrew Plumbly told Reuters, “As soon as they’re ready for adoption, we find that there are line-ups of people – literally people would line up at shelters – in the U.S. to adopt these dogs because people are so engaged by their sad and compelling stories.” The dogs lived in harsh, disgusting conditions. They were only fed once per day and waste collected under their rusty cages. This dog meat farm is the sixth HSI has worked to shutter in the country since 2015, but they estimate there are around 17,000 such farms left in South Korea, even as Reuters reports dog consumption is declining in the country. Up to two million dogs are still killed and consumed in South Korea each year, according to HSI. If you’d like to help them in their goal of shutting down the dog meat industry – including finding better livelihoods for dog meat farmers and caring for rescued animals – you can donate here . + Humane Society International Via Reuters Images via Humane Society International Facebook

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Dogs raised for meat in South Korea to get forever homes in the US

LEED Gold Hankook Tire R+D Centre harvests rainwater for cooling in Asias Silicon Valley

October 20, 2016 by  
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Developed to attract the industry’s top talent, the 96,328-square-meter research and development center aspires to be an inspirational place to work and one that encourages collaboration and social interaction. The contemporary glazed building is housed beneath a floating silver roof with long overhangs that shield the interior from unwanted solar gain and gives the structure a mysterious quality. The interior is organized along a top-lit central spine flanked by research spaces and bookended by the entrance on one end and a restaurant on the other. The spatial layout is flexible to allow for future changes and steps up from four to six stories. Related: Foster + Partners breaks ground on Ferring Pharamceuticals’ headquarters in Copenhagen “The key design objectives for, the Hankook Technodome were two-fold – to reinvent the Hankook Tire’s image and to create an integrated working environment for the office and laboratory staff,” says Iwan Jones, Partner at Foster + Partners. “The spatial arrangement encourages visual connectivity and physical interaction. Testing facilities are on display and circulation and meeting spaces are shared to enhance interaction.” The LEED Gold facility captures waste heat and reuses it for heating the adjacent dormitory that accommodates visitors and staff. Harvested rainwater is stored at the lake at the southern entrance and used for cooling. + Foster + Partners Images via Foster + Partners , © Nigel Young

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LEED Gold Hankook Tire R+D Centre harvests rainwater for cooling in Asias Silicon Valley

South Korean production facility makes medicine out of dandelions

September 30, 2016 by  
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The Korean Dandelion Farm is located on the edge of a forest in Chungcheongbuk-do province in South Korea . It comprises a quiet retreat and a production facility for making remedies using dandelions, which have been used in traditional South Korean medicine for a long time. This wildflower, which can treat liver failure, kidney disease, fever and stomach ache, is grown in a designated area behind the building. Related: Korea’s platform_monsant cafe reflects its stunning volcanic surroundings The property is dominated by concrete and wood. Enclosed areas are made of concrete, while the open spaces are framed by wooden fences. Some parts of the building feature concrete elements cast against wooden boards. The contrast between dark and light areas is accentuated by the different treatment of closed and open spaces. A large pivoting wooden door leads to the cafe area through an open courtyard . https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-PNDby5D6s Related: OBBA built this affordable 538-square-feet daylit house in Seoul for a newlywed couple and their cats “Experience of dark and light triggers your emotional experiences in this space,” said the architects. “When you enter the front courtyard, you can see the forest valley through the wide open farm cafe,” they added. + Archihood WXY Via Dezeen Photos and video by Woohyun Kang

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South Korean production facility makes medicine out of dandelions

Foster + Partners, UNStudio, Morphosis among 10 firms competing to design manmade eco-island

August 11, 2016 by  
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A Chinese airline has launched a design competition for a very special (and ambitious) eco-island located in Haikou Bay, Hainan. Ten top architectural firms from different countries are vying for the chance to design the master plan and buildings for the South Sea Pearl Eco-Island , which is envisioned as a tourist destination with hotels and residences, attractions, and space for two cruise ships to dock. China Building Center is organizing the international design competition for Hainan Airlines Group, and it has tapped Vicente Guallart, former chief architect of Barcelona and director of Guallart Architects , to develop a strategic vision for the 250-hectare artificial island. The island, which has already been created, could be the first of many off China’s coast, as studies are underway to evaluate the region for other potential man made islands. The primary function of South Sea Pearl Eco-Island will be tourist-oriented , and other islands located in the province of Hainan may follow suit. The main island, population nine million, was declared as an independent province in 1988 specifically to enhance tourism in the region. Related: 6 amazing eco-island resorts that combine luxury and sustainable innovation Ten architectural firms will submit proposals in the competition: Foster + Partners (UK), Morphosis Architects (US), Office of Architecture in Barcelona Carlos Ferrater Partnership (Spain), Diller Scofidio + Renfro (US), IROJE Architects & Planners (South Korea), UNStudio (The Netherlands), KuiperCompagnons (The Netherlands), The Jerde Partnership Inc. (US), CCDI (China), and Boston International Design Group, LLC (China). The organizers will select a winner at the end of this month, and construction is expected to begin in 2017 and take ten years to complete. Via ArchDaily Images via GAO Wenzhonglow and Guallart Architects

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Foster + Partners, UNStudio, Morphosis among 10 firms competing to design manmade eco-island

Detroit nonprofit seeks crowdfunding for new East Side community garden

August 11, 2016 by  
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Community gardens have been popping up all over Detroit in recent years, as local residents work cooperatively to reinvigorate their struggling city. A new project planned for the city’s east side will take the trend a step further. In a partnership between a local nonprofit, two state government agencies, and the community at large, a nearly abandoned plot will be transformed into a community herb and vegetable garden with an adjacent building for community events and classes. True to form, the project can’t take off without healthy community support, and a crowdfunding campaign is underway to raise half of the money needed to build the much-needed resource. Wolverine Human Services is the nonprofit organizing the project for the Jefferson-Mack neighborhood of east Detroit, near its addiction recovery facility Wolverine Center and the John S. Vitale Community Center. The East Side Community Garden and Farmers Market’s crowdfunding campaign , launched on Patronicity on July 25, aims to raise $50,000. If that goal is met, two state agencies (Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Michigan State Housing Development Authority) will double the funds through their Public Spaces, Community Places grant match program for a total project budget of $100,000. In a neighborhood on the brink of blight, the project seeks to add a community garden and training facility where residents can tend crops, learn about sustainability and farming, and build strong relationships with their neighbors. Related: Detroit’s largest urban farm to grow 60 acres of fresh produce The garden will include a series of 4-foot by 8-foot raised beds, with paved pathways that meet ADA Accessibility regulations so that all Detroit residents will be welcome and able to participate in growing their own herbs and vegetables. The site will also be home to a mixed-use building, which will host farmers’ markets, retail events, a classroom, and act as storage for agricultural equipment. Wolverine promises the center will be a safe place for residents to work and learn, with abundant lighting and security. Crowdfunding will continue until September 22, 2016. At the time of this report, the campaign has raised more than half of its $50,000 goal. + Support Detroit’s East Side Community Garden and Farmers Market Via Crain’s Images via Wolverine Human Services

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Rusty old ship transformed into a spectacular building filled with plants

July 26, 2016 by  
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Speaking about the pavilion, Shinslab Architecture says: ” Temp’L is designed from recycled steel parts from an old ship. It shows not only a beauty of structure, but it has also a recycling purpose…It provokes thought about beauty in our time, coming from a recent past.” Related: This pop-up rainwater pavilion in Edinburgh is designed to raise awareness about water To create the pavilion, Shinslab Architecture sawed off a section of hull from a rusty ship and placed it upside down. They left the exterior corroded, and painted the interior white. They also added a balcony, a spiral staircase, and trees underneath the hull to create a restful space. Temp’L is located at the entrance of the courtyard at MMCA Seoul. Shinslab Architecture hopes visitors will reflect on recycling and how architects can consider the environment at Temp’L. They said they aim “not only to develop a new method of construction in architecture by recycling materials, but for those who will see to create emotion.” In their description Shinslab Architecture wrote, “Any great cultural vestiges can lose their function. In the same way, a material can also lose its original value over time. The fact that the destiny of cultural relics is to be dismantled, should make us reflect upon what we need to consider for future generations.” The Young Architects Program in Seoul is put on by the Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 , along with MMCA. Shinslab Architecture is based in Seoul and in Versailles, France. Claire Shin, Charles Girard, Souho Lee, Camille Chalverat, Javier García González, and Taewoo Ha were all part of the Temp’L project. + Shinslab Architecture + Young Architects Program International Via Dezeen Images courtesy of shinslab architecture and photographer Kim Yong-Gwan

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