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Charles Library at Temple University, United States

Sited at the intersection of two major pedestrian pathways, Polett Walk and Liacouras Walk, and at the nexus of Temple’s Main Campus, the project anchors a new social and academic heart for the university’s diverse student body of over 39,000. Woven into the fabric of North Philadelphia, the building sits just one block off Broad Street, the connecting artery to the city.

Within its dynamic urban context, Snøhetta’s design, developed in collaboration with Stantec, reinterprets the traditional typology of the research library as a repository for books, integrating the building with a diversity of collaborative and social learning spaces. In offering more than double the amount of study spaces than its 1960s predecessor, Paley Library, the 220,000-square-foot Library anticipates over 5 million annual visitors. By uniting a plethora of academic resources, disciplines, and cutting-edge technology under one roof, Charles Library stewards Temple’s progressive mission to provide equitable learning experiences for its students, its faculty, and the surrounding community.

The lobby’s domed atrium offers views to every corner of the building, serving as a way finding anchor and placing the user at the center of the library’s activity. An oculus carved into the expansive cedar-clad dome allows light to pour into the lobby from the uppermost floor, connecting the terminus of the library back to its beginning. The steel-clad main stair is immediately visible from the entry as it winds up to the highest level of the building, inviting people to climb upwards. As people move through the building, this visual and physical connectivity allows them to maintain their bearings and encourages usage of all of the building’s resources.

Charles Library, Philadelphia

Sited at the intersection of two major pedestrian pathways, Polett Walk and Liacouras Walk, and at the nexus of Temple’s Main Campus, the project anchors a new social and academic heart for the university’s diverse student body of over 39,000. Woven into the fabric of North Philadelphia, the building sits just one block off of Broad Street, the connecting artery to the city.

Within its dynamic urban context, Snøhetta’s design, developed in collaboration with Stantec, reinterprets the traditional typology of the research library as a repository for books, integrating the building with a diversity of collaborative and social learning spaces and in offering more than double the amount of study spaces than its 1960s predecessor, Paley Library, the 220,000-square-foot Library anticipates over 5 million annual visitors. By uniting a plethora of academic resources, disciplines, and cutting-edge technology under one roof, Charles Library stewards Temple’s progressive mission to provide equitable learning experiences for its students, its faculty, and the surrounding community.

The lobby’s domed atrium offers views to every corner of the building, serving as a wayfinding anchor and placing the user at the center of the library’s activity. An oculus carved into the expansive cedar-clad dome allows light to pour into the lobby from the uppermost floor, connecting the terminus of the library back to its beginning. The steel-clad main stair is immediately visible from the entry as it winds up to the highest level of the building, inviting people to climb upwards. As people move through the building, this visual and physical connectivity allows them to maintain their bearings and encourages usage of all the building’s resources.

Pedestrian Bridge, Boston

Architecture firm Payette has created a pedestrian bridge at Northeastern University in Boston with tall metal walls and slender glazed openings that offer a glimpse of passing trains. Designed by local firmPayette, the Northeastern University Pedestrian Crossing, called PedX, is located on the school’s campus in central Boston.

Stretching 320 feet (98 metres), the bridge links the core part of campus on the north with the new Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex (ISEC) on the south. The 234,000-square-foot (21,739-square metre) building was also designed by Payette. The curving bridge, which passes over five active rail lines, also serves as an important pedestrian link between the Fenway and Roxbury neighbourhoods.

“It is a much-needed safe and fully accessible route at a key juncture in Boston,” the firm said in a project description. At the northern end, the bridge is entered via stairs or an elevator. On the other side, it flows into the sloped landscape surrounding the ISEC building. The bridge is supported by steel girders, with the west beam carrying the primary load of the span. The deck is constructed from steel decking topped with concrete.

Recyclable Shed, China

Chinese practice LUO Studio has designed a glass and metal shed-like structure to provide a temporary home for the Shengli Market in Puyang City, China, while its original site is redeveloped. LUO Studio designed the market from simple, low-cost and lightweight materials that could be recycled once the market moves out. The practice drew on designs for industrial sheds and greenhouses built with prefabricated and modular components for its design.

This simple structure of a glazed box supported by steel columns and trusses was refined with a series of custom additions that would facilitate the easy navigation and use of the market space. After deciding to adopt an architectural structure resembling industrialised vegetable sheds, the next important step was to create order in the disorderly space by adding some extensions. Based on thorough analysis, we added enclosed shops and open shelves to the space and built and entrance canopy.

A series of square shop units line three of the four edges of the market hall, measuring four metres in width to align with the metal structure’s rods. The two-metre long shelf units, which provide flat space for market sellers fill the centre of the hall, arranged in long strips to create loosely enclosed spaces for the market sellers. Given that these units were too low to support any signage, the studio designed a series of inverted pyramid structures, or “umbrellas” that sit on the structure’s thin steel columns and direct shoppers around the marketplace. Adjustable fabric coverings on the ceiling help prevent the hall from overheating and on the front facade a protruding canopy has been added, marking the market’s entrance and providing a small area of shade.

All the extensions were built with cheap and easily accessible materials including ordinary timber, lightweight steel panels, cement slabs, steel angles and polycarbonate sheets, which were easy for installation and construction,” explained the studio. Behind the main hall itself, a stand-alone single row of shops houses fish markets, alongside a small toilet block for shoppers. Once the market moves back to its original site, the studio plans to dismantle the shed and use its components in future projects.

Schierker Feuerstein Arena, Germany

At the foot of the Harz Mountains, in the Schierke district belonging to Wernigerode, a historic and listed ice stadium has been renovated. In 2013, GRAFT won the European architecture tendering for the reactivation of the former natural ice stadium and convinced the jury with their unique roof construction.

The draft by GRAFT is characterized by a roof structure that is anchored in just two points; it protects the space from rain, snow, and sunlight, but simultaneously reveals the view to the surrounding mountains and the sky above. The roof positions itself with natural lightness and elegance and merges into the landscape. The structure was developed in cooperation with Schlaich Bergermann Partner and consists of a ring in steel construction with a steel rope net covered by PTFE membrane. The roof covers an area of 2,700 square meters.

The historic stadium area transforms into a multifunctional arena presenting a highly touristic attraction. Due to the conversion measures, the arena now functions as a protected artificial ice rink in winter and a space for cultural events like concerts and theatre plays as well as sport and health events during summertime. Two new buildings on the eastern and western side of the stadium host the gastronomic range and further functional spaces. The buildings each encompass the foundation blocks of the roof so that they are visually integrated into the structure. They strongly blend into the topography and are therefore perceived as part of the landscape.

Diablos Rojos Baseball Stadium, Mexico

Chicago-based FGP Atelier has completed the new Diablos Rojos Baseball Stadium in Mexico City. Designed by Mexican-born Francisco Gonzalez Pulido, the monumental project was made to be the country’s premier baseball stadium. Working with team owner Alfredo Harp Helú, the project’s roof takes the form of a devil’s tail to reference the home team’s devilish name. Upon entering the stadium, visitors are confronted with six truncated pyramid-like forms clad in indigenous volcanic rock which form the base to much of the structure while also providing outdoor terraces at the higher level away from the arena that include food stalls and an area for socializing.

Overhead, the iconic roof stands out in one of Mexico City’s largest stadiums to date. The lightweight structure is composed of steel wrapped in PTFE textile material that plays off the light. The largest crane in the world was employed to bring the massive truss structures into position while digital scanning techniques secured precise alignment. The actual stadium itself exhibits the feel of an open-air amphitheater because of the ‘floating’ trident spear roof and features 11,500 covered seats and 8,500 additional seats in the outfield. The project was made to encourage social interaction within and outside of the stadium, with the pyramid-like structures designed to integrate a public plaza circling the stadium. Estadio Diablos was designed to bring culture and technology together, and in turn, provide new arenas for social engagement while celebrating Mexican culture.

Courtyard No. 1, China

The project is situated at the intersection of Guangzhou Road and Minjiang Road in the economic development zone of Heze City in Shandong. Due to its unique location, the project is expected to be a landmark building in the future development of the prefecture-level city. The purpose of this project is to reconsider the special function of the sales office building, in hopes of making it more sustainable through design, by becoming a symbolic public building for the future community and city.

The architectural concept is based on the artistic supremacism that reflected the social and technological changes of the 1920s, with the intention of expressing the mutual influence and interdependence between physical and virtual space in the digital age. The objects in the building are designed to float in an unstable state. Each object echoes a corresponding function in a unique form, including the entrance (horseshoe), model area (big camera lens), enterprise brand (blue stone), office area (orange-colored box), etc.

Objects floating in the air form a rich and hierarchical space, welcoming the surrounding audiences with an open dynamic posture. Some of the objects collide with the glass surface and leave traces to form a unique architectural image. As a reflection of the real world, the project attempts to look beyond a single function of the sales office through improved design, so that it can enhance the quality of public life and lead people to strive for a better future and make a positive contribution to the community.

Bitwise Headquarters, Thailand

Bitwise is a manufacturer of air conditioners, with a long track record and experience in the industry in Thailand. Their Headquarters design was realized from the conceptual organization’s image and identity. The concept of rethinking “Innovation” was applied into the form of the building. The conventional column structure was eliminated, to create a form that could correspond, not only to the required functionality but also the company’s approach toward image branding for Bitwise Headquarters. For the space of almost a 1,500 m2 capacity on the third and fourth floor to be able to cantilever 14 meters from the main structure and overhang above the drop-off area by using steel truss.

The truss structure also appears within the interior space of the third floor and these triangulated geometric patterns from structure were selected for the facade cladding pattern of the building’s exterior shell. The double-layered exterior shell for the south, and, west facade is the solution for such requirement with aluminum louvers whose forms are similar to those of ventilation fins of an air conditioner. The louvers welcome in the presence of natural light and outside surroundings. Bitwise Headquarters is an innovative experiment where architecture, engineering and construction become parts of the conceptualization and development process in which a building’s physicality and functionality are conceived, not only to represent but also innately from the owner’s identity.

Boxen, Stockholm

Boxen, the new studio gallery at ArkDes, the Swedish Centre for Architecture and Design in Stockholm, is a robust machine for fast-changing, experimental exhibitions. It is a structure that can be used in its entirety inside and out, from bottom to top, by both exhibitors and audience as a tactile, physically engaging experience. The blank canvas of the white-box interior contrasts with an external surface of chain-link wire mesh, designed for informal exhibition display effectively doubling the exhibitable wall space.

Built from a pre-fabricated standard section steel structure, and lined internally with birch plywood and white plasterboard, Boxen is covered by a corrugated steel roof. The primary structure, with columns at regular intervals, make up the main frame of the gallery and is exposed externally. Cantilevering from the primary structure, the ramp begins at the main opening, passing by a viewing platform at a large circular opening, and ending with a balcony that stretches the entire length of the gallery.

The roof, lifted from the walls to connect the exhibition space to the surrounding hall, allows natural daylight to enter the main interior space. The interior is a tall, symmetrical, white room accessed by three doors. The layering of materials on the outside of the structure creates a filigree expression and a visual depth that, in concert with the multitude of openings, blur the boundaries between the inner gallery space, the external exhibition surface, and the surrounding museum hall.

 

 

Twin Towers, Taipei

MVRDV, together with Nanhai development, unveils its proposal for the Taipei Twin Towers to revitalise the central station area of Taipei. The design of the towers is characterized by a ‘pile of blocks’ that generates a vertical urban neighbourhood. Each box serves as a visual expression of its program through an array of interactive media façades. The project is designed as a ‘times square for Taiwan,’ offering a vibrant and charismatic destination, that re-establishes the central station area of Taipei as the city’s premier location for retail, working, and tourism.

The site of the proposed MVRDV Taipei Twin Towers project, is currently occupied by the city’s main station. To be developed by Nan Hai Corporation, this hub services the city’s railway, airport lines, and metro networks, the new buildings will be constructed over the existing station. Several pre-existing plazas, will meanwhile be unified and redeveloped. Larger blocks complete two towers reaching 337 meters and 280 meters and make up the dominant image of the buildings when seen from afar.

These larger blocks house offices, cinemas, and two hotels. At ground level, the design proposes a sunken plaza, with an array of public interventions influenced by the history of the site. structures marking the former locations of the original station will transform the area into an ‘archaeological study,’ exhibiting the city’s heritage. An elevated walkway connecting the station will become the spine of the project.