domingo, 18 de junio de 2017



  • Architects

    Kere Architecture
  • Location

    Gando, Burkina 
  • Project Year


  • The building is a public library that complements the already existing school that was designed before, also by the same architect. The building has an elliptical shape and is made of local materials and also constructed by them such as clay or brick
  • Despite the walls are very thick, they are devoid of windows, which creates a very special environment inside. The natural lighting comes from the circular appertures on the roof and also work as ventilators.

  • The roof is the most interesting object of the building because is completly unique. They used the traditional clay pots of the village to create the holes of the ceiling. 
  • The pots were brought to the site by the local people and they placed them on the formwork as a pre construction process and in between the structural beams.
  • Once the pots were arrenged on the formwork, it was covered by concrete and allowed vertical ventilation and illumnination.

  • The lightweight steel ventilated roof lays above the structure and extends out of the whole building. 

  • The contour of the roof is connected to the vertical, openwork, eucalyptus elements. They provide additional shade and create the very warm and friendly environment.


    Architects: Kisho Kurokawa
    Location: Tokyo, Japan
    Year: 1972

    Kisho Kurokawa, the architect, was very pioneer since he was the first architect that designed capsule modules. The small modules were created with the inteniton of hosting business men and workers that worked on the centre of Tokyo during the week. 
    The architect uses 40 individual pods that create a very flexible unit that can be changed and moved according to the situation requirements. 
    The tower has a central fixed column and this modules are attached to it. They can be bolted and removed with four high tension bolts. The intentions were increasing the life span of the building by the possibility of replacing the pods and other elements.
    The concrete and steel frame pillars that have different heights have the housing public utilities, including stairs, elevators, plumbig and electrical systems.
    The capsules are made of a steel frame structure and were prefabricated. They were assembled at a plant before being transported to the site. 
    Cranes were used to lift the capsules to the exact place and then attached using bolts to the core.


    Hong Kong & Shanghai Bank

    Architect:  Foster and partners

    • Appointment: 1979
    • Completion: 1986
    • Area: 99,000m²
    • Height: 183m
    • Capacity: 8800
    • Client: Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation
    • Structural Engineer: Ove Arup & Partners

    The idea behind the building  was expressing the nature of banking in the city in a built form, but involving feng shui geomancer.
    The office building, due to the short time to finish the building process, most of the elements are prefabricated, including factory-finished modules. During the construction process, it was needed to build both upwards and downwards at the same time, therefore, they adopted a suspended structure, with pairs of steel masts arranged in 3 ways.

    The final result was a building formed by 3 individual towers of different heights-29, 36, 44 storeys- This stepped configuration, created different floor plans that allowed the existence of garden terraces.
    The use of masts was also very important because allowed moving the service cores to the perimeter to create a deep-pan floor and a public plaza on the ground floor completly open.
    The 'bridges' that span between the masts define double-height reception areas that break down the scale of the building both visually and socially.


    The type of structure is what is called the megaframe structure which is very typical from high rise buildings.
    It also has a frame grid for the beams and structure

    The masts, are arranged in 2 rows of 4 masts and are composed by steel columns. The groups of this 4 columns are brace to each other by large rectangular beams forming a vierendeel frame

    The connection of masts is made by a pinned type one and between slabs by a fix connection

    Two three-story high cross braces are located on both ends of the inner atrium and provide additional North-South stabilization
    Industrialized System
    Nemausus Housing, Jean Nouvel
    Nimes, France, 1987
    Before designing, Nouvel sought out to find what is a good apartment. In this quest he defined it as simply an apartment as large as possible. A good apartment is flexible, able to convert. A good cheap apartment in a democratic sense.

    The two buildings with parking on ground floor semi-buried, and three upper floors of apartments. In total there are 114 housing units distributed in the set, with simple types of duplex and triplex (studios, one bedroom house with double height, etc). The total area is habitable 10.400m2, so the average of each dwelling is 91m2 (well beyond the traditional social housing). In addition, each of these types gives to both sides of the package. 

    Again, in order to lower costs, the building structure was designed in a practical and rational. The two volumes are based on a series of columns placed every five meters, which surround the parking space. This decision follows the idea of allowing visual continuity on either side.
    Resting on these columns load-bearing walls that divide each apartment, which are repeated in the same way throughout the three floors. This module generates the same way throughout the building, which combined with one another, create different types.
    The materials on Nemausus are given by this particular image so radical. On the occasion of saving money, Nouvel conceived of his work with industrial materials and prefabricated items easy replication and assembly.

    Structure for working with columns and walls with crude revoke. On the rails of the stairs use of movement and micro-perforated sheet metal as well as aluminum. For the independent structure of the stairs using rectangular steel sections, painted red and white stripes, emphasizing the language industry.


    martes, 13 de junio de 2017

    Modular Bamboo Hotel

    Penda design group created a flexible and portable hotel design, made up primarily of bamboo sticks and nature. The structure can expand horizontally and vertically,

    "The structure could grow as tall as the trees," Chris Precht from Penda told Dezeen. "Connected to the verticality of the trees, we can experience a forest from the perspective of a child climbing a tree, in between the treetops, with the birds – fully connected with nature in 3D and HD."

    Native American tipis were the inspiration where the X shaped bamboo joints would be built on. Horizontal rods support the floor structure and the joints may be manipulated both vertically and horizontally to increase the height and width of the structure.

    Slightly raised off the ground to accommodate changes in the levels. Joints are to be tied together by rope to be disassembled and re-used elsewhere. Bamboo was chosen for its flexibility and wide availability in China. 

    "The span of each structural grid is 4.7 metres, so quite narrow, and eight sticks of structural beams are combined at each joint, so the system will be able to hold a lot of weight," Precht said.
    "The great thing about a flexible grid is that you can add structural beams when necessary, so if there is going to be more load on one part of the structure, more bamboo can be added."

    lunes, 12 de junio de 2017

    Facade Study
    Laban Dance Centre

    Herzog & De Meuron, 2003
    Deptford Creek, Southeast London
    88,264 square feet; 2 stories

    The Laban Dance Centre is a performing arts schools founded by Laban. The architects were commissioned to build a new dance centre in a former dumping site with the task to transform the area in to a rejuvenated zone. Some of the requirments in the brief include;
    - Provide inspiring and collaborative spaces
    - Bold decorative scheme
    - Inspiring focal point and rejuvenated zone
    - Light and colour play

    The architects had managed to make a stunning design, and the following year were awarded with the Sterling Prize. One of the main reasons they were able to achieve this was through the innovative use of the facade material, Poly-carbonate.

    Image result for laban dance centre

    As many of the studios are under constant use, there was a demand for natural but diffused light. Through research with ARUP, they developed an appropriate screen of polycarbonate which allowed for effective diffused light to spread throughout the studios. The polycarbonate also allowed for a playful touch of colour throughout the building, while also contrasting private space with public by create a cloudy aesthetic so the dancers silhouette could be seen from the outside.

    The facade also features a double skin element. The main polycarbonate is on the exterior skin, which in attached to the main concrete structure. This allows for stack ventilation to be introduced throughout the building.