More failures in planning and construction

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More failures in planning and construction

Architect’s mistake creates “death ray”

It is really important to do shadow studies for new high rise buildings, but it is just as important to do a SUN study. If you hadn’t seen the Disney Theater problems in LA where the polished stainless steel panels were blinding drivers on the nearby street, look that up first. I’ll wait…

Now check out this article on at ABC News:

Hello? It’s in a desert! And you designed a concave reflective face on the building, facing the sun! Maybe the sun would be something to consider?

Who is giving these architects these huge commissions and not asking for due diligence? Or did they do a Solar Study and just F it up? Let’s see the solution – I imagine it will involve replacing most or all of the glass on that side of the building with non-reflective glass. Who is going to pay for that?

More Building Fails and a few Wins

Since I haven’t been posting steadily, I thought a little re-posting of hilarious stuff would be a good substitute…

Bad planning

You won't even notice the train noise.

I always feel like... someone is watching me...

In case of fire, jump from the roof and hope you can catch hold of the top rung.

Intentional, but creepy

Barbie's Gingerbread House

One was bad enough...

Cool in the movies, not cool next door

Complete Ineptitude Continue reading

Cool Vacation Spot

Poniente Beachfront of Benidorm
Poniente Beachfront of Benidorm (Spain)

If I get to go to Spain, I hope to have the chance to check out this new promenade featured in this month’s Architectural Record.  The Poniente Beachfront of Benidorm
is a mile long beach front construct designed by the Office of Architecture in Barcelona (OAB) after winning a design competition for the project.

From the Architectural Record article: “Completed in 2009, the architects’ solution is a sinuous structure comprising a sculptural concrete shell and brilliantly color-coded, landscaped tile paths punctuated by stairways and ramps that provide universal access to the town and beach. A slender “boardwalk” winds around the base for strolling, bicycling, and jogging.”

Poniente Beachfront of Benidorm
Poniente Beachfront of Benidorm (Spain)

Good Sculpture or bad architecture?

Gehry Building
Your Brain on Gehry

After reading a previous post, a friend of mine suggested I pass along this blog post she found.

Here is a building by Frank Gehry being blogged about bother here and here.  While fun to look at, I wonder if the outward expression of the building is overshadowing the interior space. I haven’t been here, so I can’t personally comment on that, but if form follows function – what the hell is happening inside this building?

If you look through the comments on the other blogs, you’ll see some great comments.  My favorite so far:

Gehry makes interesting architectural sculpture — unbelievably dreadful buildings, mind you, but fascinating works of sculpture.

Enjoy your weekend everyone!

Urban Planners screw up your GPS

Street Road
Exit from 95 to Street Road

Anyone who lives in or around Philly/Trenton knows Street Road.  Yes, Street Road.  Clearly someone named this street before GPS was around.  If you try to enter Street into your GPS, it will return about 10,000 results.  But that’s not the only poorly chosen street name.  In fact, urban planners often draw up large scale site plans with new roads and use placeholders that no one ever changes.  In almost every metropolitan area there is a “New Street” – usually because no one cared to name it and it was on someone’s plan as a new street, so that’s what the sign says.

So here are some other street signs that may get you and your Garmin in trouble while traveling:

Continue reading

Is the profession hurting it’s own image?

Step Up
Step Up on Fifth Receives 2010 AIA National Honor Award for Architecture

I think the American Institute of Architects (of which I am a member) tries to focus on “trendy” architecture to the detriment of the overall profession.  The project shown here is a recipient of an honor award and I don’t know why…  I mean, there are some features that may be great, but to me this looks like a 1950’s hotel that got a bad paint job.  Really, why are these things being built?  What client has the money to let this get designed and constructed and didn’t think about the way this would look 5 years from now?  This type of fad laden design will appear as out of style in 5 years as your parachute pants and the lines cut into your eyebrows.  Don’t you realize buildings are harder to change than your wardrobe? Why would you spend so much money on a project that you won’t be able to sell or rent when it becomes outdated before the first lease is up? Continue reading