Architectural Design & Fabrication With Digital Technology

Architectural Design & Fabrication with Digital Technology Lisa Iwamoto [Assistant Professor of Architecture, UC Berkeley] Abstract: Since the advent of Computer Aided Design (CAD), the process of making buildings has fundamentally changed. Computer drafting has become the industry standard, facilitating rapid and accurate communication among architects, engineers, and contractors. There is now a corresponding move toward Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) using computer numerically. Now you talking hey?


Urban Design for Sustainability


Globalisation includes the increasing spatial division of labour and economies of scale in the
international economy, overriding any increase in transportation costs (which often, in any case,
are highly subsidised). Large scale, single use developments outside the main urban areas are
contributing to urban sprawl. The transport of goods and mobility of people continues to grow
steadily every year adding to the pollution of the global environment, the depletion of fossil fuels
and pollution and congestion at the local level. The development of transport infrastructure, and
particularly roads, responds to the economic pressures and in turn increases mobility and
accessibility, opening up rural areas to new urban development, with the demand for easing the
long distance and international flow of goods over-riding local sustainability needs.

The growth of mobility, of the transport infrastructure and other infrastructures, especially in the area of information and communication technology (ICT) is also resulting in the emergence of
new, more polycentric patterns of urban development, with a greater specialisation of functions
between centres (as well as increased competition) and the growing importance of networks of
cities. The challenge for urban design is to respond to these emerging patterns in a proactive way
that overcomes negative effects such as excessive car-based mobility and urban sprawl.
Hammarby Sjöstad masterplan
Growing prosperity and wealth and increasing demands for an improved quality of life are
reflected in the increasing consumption of land and space, demand for privacy and better living
conditions and access to green space. Demographic trends, including an ageing population and
the growth of smaller and single person households, are adding to the demands for new housing
and to the pressures for suburbanisation in rural areas (as well as for improvements to the quality of the environment and everyday life in inner city areas). Valuable agricultural land, amenity space and natural reserves of biodiversity are being lost. At the same, increasing land values and property prices in cities make housing in locations that are accessible to livelihood opportunities and services increasingly unaffordable for many sections of the population.

The relationship between the housing market and public land and housing policies and urban design is critical. Urban design can provide the framework for achieving a good quality of life when the attempt to meet these challenges may require higher densities and better mixes of development.

The overall aim of sustainable urban development is to achieve a healthy and high quality of life
for all people in this and subsequent generations, with equitable and geographically balanced and
socially cohesive economic development, which reduces the impact on the global and local


Perforated House Challenges and Reinvents Historic Architecture


For architects working on projects in historic districts or in an area with a concentration of period buildings, solving problems can suffer reduced emphasis over adhering to the predetermined style. Kavellaris Urban Design(KUD) in Australia were challenged to design a house on a vacant lot in between a row of Victorian terrace houses and an Edwardian weatherboard house. The firm saw an opportunity to critique the surrounding historic buildings, many of which underwent predictable interior renovations to make them more ‘modern’. The architects concluded that the demand for the historic houses was based more on people’s romanticized nostalgia for the structures rather than their good design. To KUD, the ornamental facades dictated a ‘neighborhood character’ instead of responding to it.


KUD studied the terrace house, sampled the good parts and rewrote the rest. Top on their list was to address the lack of environmental sustainability in the old houses. One of the big areas for improvement over the old structures was to get more natural light into the building thus reducing energy consumption and allowing for natural ventilation. The north facing terrace redefines the “aussie” backyard reinforced by the childlike mural reminiscing on a past era and making commentary on the changing demography of the family unit and ultimately the inner city house typology. The perforated house incorporates north facing glass bi-folds doors and louvers for cross ventilation as the primary means of cooling.



In designing the exterior facade, KUD saw an opportunity to represent the past and also create something that was dynamic and engaged the community. The glass facade is opaque by day and has the traditional terrace detailing screened on to it. At night, interior light filters through the wall and transfoms the house into a glowing box. The entire front wall of the second floor can be opened up making the second floor a huge terrace.

Inside, traditional planing elements were borrowed but many of the walls can be moved and altered to make spaces either public or private. This flexibility allows the occupants to tune the interior experience and function to whatever the demands of their lifestyle require.

Want to see the house in 3d? KUD have uploaded a model to the Google Sketchup Warehouse. Preview it here.

source: Designtoinspire


The Highline – New York by JCFO & diller scofidio + renfro


Project: High Line Public Park project
The High Line design is led by James Corner Field Operations, with diller scofidio + renfro
Location: New York – USA
Photos by: Iwan Baan

Project Description:

“The high line, in collaboration with field operations, is a new 1.5-mile long public park built on an abandoned elevated railroad stretching from the meatpacking district to the hudson rail yards in manhattan.
Inspired by the melancholic, unruly beauty of this postindustrial ruin, where nature has reclaimed a once vital piece of urban infrastructure, the new park interprets its inheritance. It translates the biodiversity that took root after it fell into ruin in a string of site-specific urban microclimates along the stretch of railway that include sunny, shady, wet, dry, windy, and sheltered spaces.
Through a strategy of agri-tecture, part agriculture, part architecture- the high line surface is digitized into discrete units of paving and panting which are assembled along the 1.5 miles into a variety of gradients from 100% paving to 100% soft, richly vegetated biotopes. the paving system consists of individual pre-cast concrete planks with open joints to encourage emergent growth like wild grass through cracks in the sidewalk. the long paving units have tapered ends that comb into planting beds creating a textured, ‘pathless’ landscape where the public can meander in unscripted ways. the park accommodates the wild, the cultivated, the intimates, and the social. Access points are durational experiences designed to prolong the transition from the frenetic pace of city streets to the slow otherworldly landscape above. ”



Pavilion by Zaha Hadid

"Superimpositions of spatial structures with hidden traces of Burnham's organizational systems create unexpected results in the Burnham Pavilion. By using methods of overlaying, complexity is built up and inscribed in the structure."

-Zaha Hadid

Zaha Hadid's designs have the power to reinterpret and invigorate our understanding of what a building or a cityscape can be. Her fluid structures evolve from experimentation with cutting-edge technologies to reinterpret space itself.

Examining Burnham's drawings in the Plan of Chicago, Hadid was struck by how the city's diagonal streets open up the otherwise rigid street grid. Lengthening the drawn line of one of the diagonals, she marked where the street would fall if extended into Millennium Park. The design for the Burnham Pavilion incorporates that line, as the structural ribs and openings in the roof run parallel to an imaginary extension of Daniel Burnham's diagonal streets. The result is Hadid's sinuous pavilion that plays with shadow, light and space.

More than 7,000 pieces of aluminum- no two alike- were individually bent and welded together, creating the pavilion's curvilinear form. Thousands of yards of fabric were custom tailored and tightly fit onto the interior and exterior aluminum-tube structure. The ridges of the aluminum are deliberately expressed through the external skin. The Marmon/Keystone Corporation donated much of the aluminum that provides the frame of curved ribs supporting the pavilion.

The interplay of light and shadow changes as the skylights cast shadows on the curving interior walls during the day. In the evening, a film installation by artist Thomas Gray will be projected onto the fluid fabric interior from different points inside the pavilion, creating a fully immersive effect. The film impressionistically reflects Chicago's transformation from 1909 to present, and includes the voices of people throughout the Chicago region sharing their visions of the future.

Accompanying the film is a creative multi-channel sound track by Lou Mallozzi of Experimental Sound Studio, Chicago. Both the interior and exterior surfaces of the pavilion are bathed in ever-changing lighting designed by Dear Productions.

The pavilion's materials are completely recyclable, and can be dismantled and reinstalled in its entirety elsewhere after the Centennial. (Construction Gallery coming soon.)

Photos by: Eric Y. Exit and Thomas Gray

Burnham Hadid Pavillion - Green 1

Burnham Hadid Pavillion - Blue

Burnham Hadid Pavillion - Green 2

Burnham Hadid Pavillion - Interior

Hadid Pavillion Detail


Louis Vuitton: Art, Fashion and Architecture Book Video

Louis Vuitton: Art, Fashion and Architecture Book

A powerful entity in the world of fashion, Louis Vuitton’s reach over the years has extended much beyond its humble beginnings as a luggage brand. In its latest book release, LV’s unparalleled reach over numerous facets of society and design are outlined in its self-titled book, Louis Vuitton: Art, Fashion and Architecture. The book’s contents delve into the brand’s history and association with numerous personalities from the world of art, architecture, design, photography and fashion. A cornerstone of creativity, the Louis Vuitton book features 400 pages filled stunning imagery and will be available in three languages, English, French and Italian. A special deluxe version will release on September 1st, 2009 at and at Louis Vuitton stores and features artwork by Takashi Murakami. The book is priced at $130 USD. Below is a synopsis of the book as well as a three-question interview with Yves Carcelle, Chairman and CEO of Louis Vuitton.

Announced earlier this year, the Louis Vuitton: Art, Fashion and Architecture Book together with Camille Scherrer puts an animated spin on things to further highlight the book. For any Louis Vuitton fan and culture fan in general, this book should appeal to you as it uncovers Louis Vuitton’s involvement over the years in various facets of art, fashion and architecture as the book’s title would suggest.



Architecture firms focus on sustainable projects

Twice a year, Kermit Baker, the chief economist of the American Institute of Architects, convenes a panel to provide a forecast of nonresidential construction activity for the next six months.

The most recent forecast predicted a 16 percent decline in 2009, and an additional drop of almost 12 percent in 2010. In Atlanta, commercial architecture firms are seeing a similar downturn and are refocusing their firms’ business models to adapt.

“We are certainly seeing a decline in a lot of sectors we work in,” said Fred Perpall, managing principal of Beck’s Atlanta office. “Retail, corporate commercial and also spec office are probably going to be down for the next few years because we’ve got some big overbuilding.”

Perpall predicted commercial financing will come back before demand for commercial work ramps up again.

by Michael Hunter Via


Roof Tiles that Power Your Home

These days it seems there are plenty of reasons for homeowners to consider the switch to solar power, not the least of which is a pretty attractive tax rebate from the good ‘ole federal government. But for those who also take aesthetics into consideration in their home improvement decisions, there has always been the pesky issue of plunking the somewhat bulky panels on top of your roof for all the world to see…until now.

Thanks to the work of SRS Energy, a Philadephia-based company that develops and manufactures premium solar roofing tiles designed to seamlessly integrate with traditional roofing products. (See image above where blue solar tiles have been added to a traditional mission-style tiled roof). Marketed as the Solé Power Tile™, these SRS Energy roofing tiles are designed to capture and convert sunlight into cost-saving electricity without compromising aesthetics. The tiles are offered as an integrated upgrade to a traditional roofing purchase. Added to the protection and curb appeal expected from a premium roofing system, homeowners are able to capitalize on solar electricity as sustainable value


Serpentine Gallery Pavilion by SANAA, London

Beautiful piece of architecture by SANAA. The building merges with its surroundings, the London Kensington gardens, with elegance and intelligence.