Sunday, 28 August 2011

I Love Park Hill

A 1980's icon - not Park Hill [although that isn't a bad icon in itself], but the graffiti plastered on the concrete to be visible from the city centre. Recently subject to a radio show all of it's own. Now lit up in neon for all to still see - probably the nicest and most humane touch of the reinvention of Park Hill.

Friday, 26 August 2011

Alien Architecture

There have been a couple of articles recently that have caught my eye regarding sci-fi architecture and climate change. The headline "Cut carbon to avoid alien attack, says NASA" is based on the observable scale of the impact of environmental change and one possible scenario for meeting extraterrestrials. The mothership in Cowboys and Aliens description ... "... it's a great big lump of a thing; it looks like the multi-storey car park in Get Carter, designed for throwing dodgy Newcastle businessmen to their deaths."
And I think the new Business School for Newcastle University has been inspired by the Star Wars Sandcrawler ... even down to the cladding.

References: Sample, Ian [2011] "Cut carbon to avoid alien attack, says NASA". p19 and Bradshaw, Peter [2011] "Gunfight at the ET corral". p12 both in The Guardian 19th August.

Friday, 19 August 2011

Wiki House

You have to have a look at this! The Wiki House is another great look into the future of the house building industry? Printed rather than prefabricated building elements taken from an open-source kit of parts. Nice idea, although it would probably need a lot of support. Not just a technical factory but some way to overcome the barriers to delivery - statutory planning, financing and mortgage providers, insurance, reselling, occupant preferences ... etc. Yet the principle is great ... free access to design. Just let's not forget about local variety and identity as this develops into something bigger.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Milton Keynes Methods of Construction

Recently can across this oldish article on Richard Rodgers & Partners MMC 'Design for Manufacture Project' at Oxley Woods, Milton Keynes. Designed for an above-ground cost of £60,000 ... or $118,000. They seem impressed by the cost, the speed and the Ref: Blum, Andrew [2008] "7 Days Later" Wired, June p86.