West Lake urban area scheme announced – Vietnam

The Ha Noi Department of Planning and Architecture late last week announced details of the West Lake urban area project.

The urban area, which has a total investment capital of US$314-mil in its first phase, will cover an area of more than 200ha and can accommodate around 20,000 people.

The new urban area will consist of housing, office buildings, high-end hotels, parks, banks and commercial centres.

The project is expected to have the land clearance phase completed in 2009 and basic building completed in 2011

Source: VietNamNet – West Lake urban area scheme announced.

OMA reveals Copenhagen waterfront project

The Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) today revealed the design for the Bryghusgrunden Project at the historic waterfront in Copenhagen. The 27,000 square meter building will include new facilities for the Danish Architecture Center (DAC), the headquarters of the Realdania Foundation, along with a distinctive mix of residential units, public program and playground facilities.

The Bryghusgrunden Project is located on the harbor on the site of an old brewery, the Bryghusgrunden, one of the few remaining areas with the potential to link the city to the waterfront. The building itself will straddle the busy Christians Brygge ring road, creating new urban connections for pedestrians and cyclists between the waterfront and Denmark’s houses of government.

The mix of program within the building is unique – for the first time an architecture center will be embedded within its own key subjects of study and research – housing, offices, public space and parking. The DAC will include several exhibition areas, research facilities, an auditorium, conference rooms, a bookstore and a cafĂ©.

The project is led by OMA partners Ellen van Loon and Rem Koolhaas in collaboration with project managers Chris van Duijn and Dirk Peters. Van Loon and Koolhaas’s previous collaborations include the design of the new aquarium and science center in Hamburg, the headquarters of NM Rothschild & Sons in London, the redevelopment of Mercati Generali in Rome and the completion of Porto’s Casa da Musica and the Netherlands Embassy in Berlin.

Source : Office of Metropolitan Architecture

Discovery Green Park awash in ‘Sunchronicity of Color’

Acclaimed Texas artist Margo Sawyer’s geometric work “Synchronicity of Color” was dedicated at Houston’s new downtown park, Discovery Green.

City Council Member James Rodriguez, Dawn Ullrich, director of the City of Houston Convention & Entertainment Facilities Department, Jonathon Glus, CEO of Houston Arts Alliance, Guy Hagstette, president of Discovery Green Conservancy, and Sawyer participated in dedication ceremonies. Sawyer received a mayoral proclamation from Council Member Rodriguez, who presented it on behalf of Mayor Bill White.

“Synchronicity of Color” is the newest addition to the City of Houston ‘s inventory of more than 400 civic art works in public spaces. The two-piece architectural installment of red- and blue-themed aluminum boxes conceal concrete stairwells that lead into the Convention District parking garage beneath Discovery Green, across from the George R. Brown Convention Center. More than 1,400 aluminum boxes were used to create the vibrant “Synchronicity of Color.”

Discovery Green is scheduled to be opened to the public on April 13.

Landscape Architect: Hargreaves Associates

Source: City of Houston Press Release

Playing with different spaces

An abandoned municipal area, alongside a neglected backyard in Bat Yam, has been turned into a blossoming garden over the past three weeks, serving dozens of the city’s residents: pensioners, new immigrants, solitary people and families.

“We decided to do some recycling in an unused area of the city, to expand the concept of the shared living space and to enable residents to enjoy resources that actually belong to them,” explains the garden’s architect, Kerem Halbrecht, 29. The project, which was also planned by Halbrecht’s father, industrial designer Zvi Halbrecht, was included in the first International Biennale for Landscape Urbanism, which will open next Sunday in Bat Yam.

Source: Haaretz – Israel NewsPlaying with different spaces –

University of Pennsylvania Team Wins the 2008 ULI Competition

A plan drafted by a University of Pennsylvania team to redevelop a site within the Cedars neighborhood of Dallas has been selected as the winning scheme in the sixth annual ULI (Urban Land Institute) Gerald D. Hines Student Urban Design Competition. The teams entry was selected over plans submitted by other finalist teams from the University of Michigan, the University of Texas at Austin, and an additional team from the University of Pennsylvania.

Find the winning entries @ www.udcompetition.uli.org

Source: ULI Press Release

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