UNStudio presents Raffles City, Hangzhou

RCH_080724_K04_LONG_FACADEUNStudio’s mixed-use Raffles City development is located near the Qiangtan River in Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province, located 180 kilometres southwest of Shanghai. With a city population of 1.69 million, Hangzhou is one of the most renowned and prosperous cities in China and is well known for its beautiful natural scenery, particularly in the West Lake area.

According to Ben van Berkel, “The philosophy behind the Raffles City concept is to integrate mixed use in an urban context, but in such a way as to give this concept a twist; by focussing on where the urban context meets the landscape of the city. In the design of the towers the urban element of the project twists towards the landscape, whilst the landscape aspect, in turn, twists towards the urban context, thereby effecting the incorporation and consolidation of these separate elements in one formal gesture.”

Raffles City Hangzhou is due for realisation in 2012. After four years of planning and construction, it will reach a height of 60 stories, presenting views both to and from the Qiantang River and West Lake areas. Raffles City Hangzhou will provide a total floor area of almost 300,000 square metres.

UNStudio’s Raffles City in Hangzhou will be CapitaLand’s sixth Raffles City, following those in Singapore, Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu and Bahrain. UNStudio’s Raffles City Hangzhou incorporates retail, offices, housing and hotel facilities and marks the site of a cultural landscape within the Quianjiang New Town Area.

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SOURCE: UNStudio

IMAGES SOURCE: UNStudio

Cruise down the Danube on a floating beach – Urban Landscape Group

Urban Landscape Group have just launched the Barge Beach Budapest/Uszály Strand

Budapest is famous for its Turkish baths and open air pools, but this summer there is an unusual addition to the capital’s bathing scene: a floating beach on the Danube river, right in the city centre.
Mayor Gabor Demszky on Thursday praised the solution to the “decades old” problem of Budapest citizens being cut off from the Danube by the two busy highways that run along its embankments.
The “beach” is actually a wooden-decked platform built onto old barges of the type that haul cargoes of coal and stone up and down the Danube.

It has an area of 2100 square metres, larger than six tennis courts, with a 16-metre swimming pool, a coffee bar sand pits and a childrens paddling pool and sun loungers.

Az Uszály Strand egy medencés strand, mely egy uszály rakterébõl kialakított úszó- és gyermekmedencébõl, valamint az uszály mellé csatolt 2 bárkából áll, melyeken különleges, a strandolást kiegészítõ „vízélmények” valamint napozóágyak találhatók, melyek 2100m2-en terülnek el. A vízen úszó különleges látványstrand a Duna-part frekventált, turisták által látogatott belvárosi szakaszán jelent unikális élményt  az érdeklõdõknek, a hazai közönségnek és a turistáknak egyaránt.

SOURCE: Urban Landscape Group VIA Inhabitat
Image SOURCE: Urban Landscape Group

International Urban Landscape Award (IULA) Competition

The Eurohypo Aktiengesellschaft of Frankfurt, Germany, and Topos – International Review of Landscape Architecture and Urban Design are holding the International Urban Landscape Award (IULA) competition again this year in search of exemplary urban design projects for sustainable development in Germany or the United Kingdom. Taking place for the third time, the competition seeks to contribute towards sustainable ways of securing and advancing the quality of life and economic activity.

This time round, the prize is divided into two categories: Category A, which honours ground-breaking, newly-built or redeveloped urban architecture, and Category B, which recognises initiatives, concepts, designs or research projects in the field of sustainable urban development. Both categories come with a cash prize of €25,000.

Further information and the obligatory project form can be downloaded at www.topos.de

Closing Date: Entries must be received by 3 September 2009

The plight of Britain’s ancient trees – The Guardian

Patrick Barkham of The Guardian reports

Ancient trees are ecological treasures because they provide unique habitats for rare plants, insects, birds and mammals. When they become ancient, trees such as oaks and sweet chestnuts “grow down”, dying at the top and forming a new crown of leaves below so the tree shrinks and hunches like a very old man.

read the full article at the SOURCE: The Guardian – The plight of Britain’s ancient trees

Stirling Prize 2009 Shortlist Announced – RIBA

The Shortlist for the RIBA Stirling Prize 2009 has been announced. The six shortlisted schemes listed below were chosen from a midlist of 22 RIBA Award 2009 winners. The RIBA Stirling Prize 2009 winner will be announced at the RIBA Stirling Prize 2009 Dinner on 17 October 2009 at Old Billingsgate, London.

The six buildings competing for this year’s title are:

  • Fuglsang Kunstmuseum , Denmark by Tony Fretton Architects
  • Maggie’s Centre , London by Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
  • Bodegas Protos , Spain by Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
  • Liverpoool One Masterplan , Liverpool by BDP
  • 5 Aldermanbury Square , London by Eric Parry Architects
  • Kentish Town Health Centre , London by Allford Hall Monaghan Morris

“This year’s shortlist really embodies the wide ranging spirit of the RIBA Stirling Prize: from a winery to health centres, from an art museum in open country to major transformations of dense inner city areas. This is a fascinating set of schemes; the judges have a hard but eagerly anticipated decision to make.”

Fuglsang Kunstmuseum (c) Helene Binet

Fuglsang Kunstmuseum (c) Helene Binet

Maggies Centre (c) Richard Bryant Arcaid.co.uk

Maggies Centre (c) Richard Bryant Arcaid.co.uk

Bodegas Protos (c) Paul Raftery

Bodegas Protos (c) Paul Raftery

Liverpool One Masterplan (c) David Millington

Liverpool One Masterplan (c) David Millington

5 Aldermanbury Square (c)Timothy Soar

5 Aldermanbury Square (c)Timothy Soar

Kentish Town Health Centre (c) Tim Soar

Kentish Town Health Centre (c) Tim Soar

SOURCE: RIBA

Images courtesy of RIBA

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