Architecture

Minnesota Students in Haiti

We are among six students and one professor, from the University of Minnesota Architecture School working in Haiti on the Collège Mixte LaConcorde Orphanage project, under the auspices of Architecture for Humanity (AFH), to design a school and orphanage complex…

The Rocky Road to Green Design

Photo: Morley Von Sternberg. It’s ironic to think that some of the most pleasant and appealing structures in the U.S. have had some of the most painful births. Take Yale’s Kroon Hall. This $33.5 million LEED Platinum flagship building of…

Q&A: David Benjamin

Pioneering architect and teacher David Benjamin tinkers at the crossroads of design and biology, exploring the possibilities of both mimicking and literally harnessing life to create dynamic, responsive structures. He has orchestrated research workshops for his graduate students and initiated…

From Passivhaus to Our Haus?

Why the funny title?  Well, I went to a conference a few weeks ago in Burlington, Vermont and came away wondering if the Passiv Haus movement is really accessible to the mainstream. The phrase is a play on words from…

Designing to Heal: Luxury Healthcare

Where can one find world class doctors, highly customized medical plans, a five star spa, health club, and restaurant? The Chaum Center, in Seoul, Korea, designed by KMD architects, combines all these things in an attempt to transform health care.…

Baby Rems

In 1975 Rem Koolhaas, together with Elia and Zoe Zenghelis and Madelon Vriesendorp, founded the Office for Metropolitan Architecture. Today OMA is one of the most influential architectural practices in the world. Not only has the firm designed some of…

A Confusing Design Decade

Design award categories are often unfortunate anachronisms. Most awards are given in categories based on disciplines -- “Furniture Design”, “Consumer Products” – and then the organizers resort to lengthy definitions to try and force today’s exciting, interdisciplinary work into these…

Celebrating the Corncobs, Saving the Clover Leaf

The curvaceous forms created by Chicago architect Bertrand Goldberg are rather susceptible to unfortunate botanical nicknames. His “Corncobs”-- the concrete twin towers of Marina City, which are a Chicago icon (left) -- will turn 50 on November 22nd this year.…

Brain Health

Though I edited the magazine Healthcare Design for eight years, and wrote and commented upon dozens of projects, I’ve seldom visited them personally to see what they really look like and how well they work. An exciting exception occurred this…

Design Conference, Tweeted.

There were too many things vying for the audience’s attention at the “Why Design Now?” conference hosted in New York City on October 1st by the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum and GE. It was hard enough staying focused on the…

The Green Vanguard: H is for Health Care

Designed by Gianfranco Zaccai HERMAN MILLER Just over 40 years ago, Robert Propst checked into the University of Michigan hospital in Ann Arbor for back surgery. During his six-week convalescence, the president of Herman Miller Research Corp. and inventor of…

Living Light?

Jan Gehl, the Danish architect, author of the influential book Cities for People, and consultant to the NYC Department of City Planning, spoke recently at New York’s Center for Architecture. He focused, as he does in his public appearances, on…