Sometime in 2011, three twisting towers are set to shoot up along a man-made creek in the desert sheikhdom of Dubai.
Bent at the waist, the Signature Towers will be the work of the Pritzker prize-winning architect Zaha Hadid, who, with fellow Pritzker winners Norman Foster and Frank Gehry, is leading an architect rush to the Emirates.
“We are trying things out for the first time which we wanted to try out, but couldn’t,” said Patrik Schumacher, a partner at Zaha Hadid Architects. “We have found an unusual degree of receptiveness to new ideas in the Gulf.”
The Persian Gulf is home to more than $2 trillion worth of construction projects, fueled by a quadrupling of oil prices over the last five years. As the Gulf states – home to about 40 percent of the world’s proven crude-oil reserves – seek to diversify away from hydrocarbons, their appetite for landmark buildings is growing.
Read more at the Source: Hadid leading architectural rush to the Emirates International Herald Tribune.
Building on Foster + Partners’ pioneering work in the region and consolidating the practice’s long-term commitment to further development, HRH The Duke of York is to open a new Foster + Partners office in Abu Dhabi on April 3rd. The practice has been working in Abu Dhabi for the past two years, during which time it has developed an appreciation for and understanding of the specific design challenges faced by the local climate and culture.
Foster + Partners’ projects in the area – led by Senior Partner Gerard Evenden – include the design for Aldar Central Markets, a reinterpretation of the traditional market place and dynamic new quarter for Abu Dhabi, as well as the design for the Abu Dhabi World Trade Center, part of the Al Raha Beach Development. As a result of the Masdar Initiative, the Foster masterplan for Masdar will provide Abu Dhabi with a new sustainable city, a centre for new ideas for energy production and a sustainable urban blueprint for the future. Foster + Partners also won the international competition to design the new Sheikh al Zayed National Museum, an ambitious project to honour the legacy of the late ruler and founder of the nation.
Source: Foster + Partners
As landscape architects and design professionals we try our hardest to be green in our designs with water sensitive design, plants from the local ecology and materials from close to the project. And we also try to bring that green environment to our offices and work places with recycling bins, energy efficient lighting and providing bike racks for staff. But we often forget about the things that we have over the years become more and more reliant on – our computers and printers.
Over the last few years we have swapped our energy sucking CRT monitors for LCD panels and changed to digital format of pdf and dwf. However we always use the printers day in and day out and now Xerox has created the Sustainability Calculator to help us truly find out how green our office is by calculating all our office printers – Energy, Greenhouse Gas and Solid Waste use.
Xerox have also provided a few tips on how your office could be greener.
Source: Xerox North America
Fee guidelines for professionals working within South Africa’s built environment are set to come under scrutiny over the next few months, when fee and work-reservation proposals for professionals operating in the sector will be presented to the Competition Commission.
Read more @ Competition body to apply its mind to new fee schedules for professionals operating within the built environment.
The stand-alone mall isn’t dead. It’s just dysfunctional. That was one of the sentiments expressed at an Urban Land Institute panel that tackled the question, “Can stand-alone malls survive?” The question was posed Thursday, during ULI’s annual Reinventing Retail conference at the Wilshire Grand Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles.
The comment about the dysfunctional nature of traditional stand-alone malls came from panelist Shaheen Sadeghi, founder of Costa Mesa, CA-based LAB Holding, a firm that eschews traditional malls in favor of projects like its youth-oriented “the Lab” in Costa Mesa, a center that the developer describes as an “anti-mall.”
Read more @ GlobeSt.com – ULI Asks: ‘Can Stand-Alone Malls Survive?’.