Grand Rapids Art Museum, First LEED Gold Museum

Grand Rapids Art Museum

Grand Rapids, Michigan is one of the greenest cities in the country, at least if you go by the number of LEED certified buildings it has.  A couple of years ago, Grand Rapids was #5 on a list of cities with the most LEED certified buildings, surpassing even cities such as Chicago, San Francisco, New York, and Washington DC.  Grand Rapids also has embraced renewable energy for the city.  But Grand Rapids’ latest claim to green fame is that it is now the home to the first new construction LEED-certified art museum in the country. 

The building is a 125,000 sf structure designed by Kulapat Yantrasast of Workshop Hakomori Yantrasast (wHY Architects).  The Grand Rapids Art Museum opened just a few weeks prior to David Adjaye’s Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver, which is also expecting a LEED Gold.

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By |January 28th, 2008|LEED, Modern architecture|3 Comments

Ultimate Reuse at Freitag Shop Zurich

Freitag Flagship Store

It's hard not to gawk at the images of this building.  So industrial and modern.  It's quite striking.  Built with 17 containers in 2006, this Freitag Flagship Store is probably one of the best examples of adaptive reuse that I can recall. 

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Magic Box, is this the Future of (Green) Prefab?

Magic Box Prefab

I put ‘green’ in parenthesis because the future is green, whether you, I, or anyone else likes it.  That’s where this whole thing is heading.  And several countries rely heavily on prefabrication for construction of homes and buildings.  So I ask, after looking at the photos, does this Magic Box represent what’s to come in the future?  The Magic Box is cubic and versatile and small.  It can go anywhere and be used as anything.  But is this the future of (green) prefab?

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By |January 25th, 2008|Modern architecture, Modern design, Prefab, Single Family|0 Comments

Tulane GREENbuild: Splendid Combo of Green, Prefab

Tulane Green Build Rendering

The Tulane School of Architecture Green Build program set about to research, develop, and construct an inventive and experimental prototypical house.  A green house.  Made in a factory.  Specifically for post-Katrina New Orleans.  Students first researched everything from construction processes to materials selection parameters.  Above all, access to materials, affordability, and sustainability ruled the day.  In the end, Tulane Green Build came up with a design for a 1,200 sf home with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. 

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By |January 23rd, 2008|Modern architecture, Prefab, Single Family|0 Comments

Mashup of Modern Topiary + Living Walls

Louis Vuitton Topiade

Gas Design Group designed this overlay facade, "Topiade", for an already existing Louis Vuitton store.  I think the name "Topiade" comes from a combo of the terms topiary and facade, which is pretty creative, if you ask me.  The idea of taking wild greenery and applying design and creativity through topiary is something I’ve seen personally in both Japan and Taiwan.  It appears to be popular in France, as well.  So when applied to the vertical context, the environmentalists get excited.  We like green roofs, living walls, and natural buildings. 

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By |January 22nd, 2008|Modern architecture, Nature, Retail, Vegetation|5 Comments

GreenMobile® Ultra-Affordable, Modular Green Homes

Greenmobile2

We featured GreenMobile® last year when we blogged about the Lifecycle Building Challenge winners.  GreenMobile® was a winner in the Professional Unbuilt category.  Now, mounting success upon success, Michael Berk, creator of the concept, has a prototype in the works to be unveiled in March 2008.  Can’t wait to see that!  GreenMobile® was awarded $5.8 M from FEMA to further develop the prototype and roughly 80 units are in the pipeline right after that prototype comes through. 

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By |January 18th, 2008|Affordable, Modern architecture, Single Family|13 Comments