Tag Archives: Innovation

Dezeen: W57 —West 57th Residential Building by BIG

Durst Fetner Residential commissioned Copenhagen based BIG in the spring of 2010 to introduce a new residential typology to Manhattan.

sltube7 Uploaded on Feb 10, 2011
Jacob Slevin Bjarke Ingels Is BIG in New York City with W57
(by Designer Pages)

GlessnerGroup Uploaded on Feb 15, 2011
W57 – West 57th Residential Building [no audio]
W57 is a hybrid between the European perimeter block and a traditional Manhattan high-rise, West 57th has a unique shape which combines the advantages of both: the compactness and efficiency of a courtyard building providing density, a sense of intimacy and security, with the airiness and the expansive views of a skyscraper.
©Glessner Group, Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG)

Construction is due for completion in 2016.

█ Architect: Bjarke Ingels Group

### dezeen.com Tue, 8 Feb 2011 at 12:41 pm
West 57th by BIG
By Catherine Warmann
Durst Fetner Residential (DFR) today announced the design of West 57, a 600-unit 80/20 residential building on West 57th Street between 11th and 12th Avenues. The building is designed by renowned Danish Architect firm BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group and is their inaugural North American project. The building’s program consists of over 600 residential units of different scales situated on a podium with a cultural and commercial program. The building will strive for LEED Gold Certification.

“It’s extraordinarily exciting to build a building whose architecture will attract visitors from around the globe,” said Hal Fetner, CEO of Durst Fetner Residential. “BIG’s design is innovative, evocative and unique and the building’s beauty is matched only by its efficient and functional design that preserves existing view corridors while maximizing the new building’s access to natural light and views of the Hudson River. West 57th will establish a new standard for architectural excellence and its creative design, sustainable-construction and operations, breathtaking views and distinctive amenities will make it New York’s most sought after residential address.”


“New York is rapidly becoming an increasingly green and livable city. The transformation of the Hudson River waterfront and the Highline into green parks, the ongoing effort to plant a million trees, the pedestrianisation of Broadway and the creation of more miles of bicycle lanes than the entire city of my native Copenhagen are all evidence of urban oases appearing all over the city. With West 57th we attempt to continue this transformation into the heart of the city fabric – into the centre of a city block,” Bjarke Ingels, Founder, BIG.

“The building is conceived as a cross breed between the Copenhagen courtyard and the New York skyscraper. The communal intimacy of the central urban oasis meets the efficiency, density and panoramic views of the tall tower in a new hybrid typology. The courtyard is to architecture what Central Park is to urbanism: a giant green garden surrounded by a dense wall of spaces for living.”
Read more + Images

[view full screen]

BIG from DRKHRSE (posted 4 months ago)
An aerial view of Bjarke Ingel’s newest building in NYC, at W57

█ Drone Photography: Darkhorse

### dezeen.com Wed, 16 Sept 2015 at 11:10 am
Drone video shows progress on New York “courtscraper” by BIG
By Jenna McKnight
Communications firm Darkhorse has used a camera mounted to a drone to capture footage of Via 57 West, the residential building by Bjarke Ingels Group that is now rising in New York. Construction is underway on the tetrahedron-shaped building, which is located on West 57th Street in Midtown Manhattan. The design is pulled up at one corner, to create a 467-foot-tall (142-metre) structure. It topped out several months ago, with the addition of the final structural beam, and work is now continuing on the building’s facades. The unofficial movie by Darkhorse shows images of Via’s sloped exterior, which is punctuated with south-facing terraces that look toward the Hudson River.


Encompassing 861,00 square feet (80,000 square metres), the building will contain 709 residential units and a large central courtyard. The project also calls for retail space totalling 45,000 square feet (4,180 square metres).

“We call it a courtscraper,” Ingels told Dezeen in an interview last year. “It’s a combination of a skyscraper and a courtyard building. One side is the height of a handrail and the other side is the height of a high-rise.”

The project is being constructed in an area with a mix of building types. W57 is sandwiched between a power plant, a sanitation garage and a highway. The building’s amenities will include a pool, fitness centre, basketball court, golf simulator, library and screening room. Residents will also be able to reserve “living rooms” for entertaining that feature fireplaces, chef’s kitchens, dining rooms and large terraces.
Read more + Images


█ Other residential projects now underway in New York include 152 Elizabeth Street by Tadao Ando in the Nolita neighbourhood, 520 West 28th Street by Zaha Hadid near the High Line, and a luxury condo building by Alvaro Siza that is slated to rise near BIG’s Via 57 West.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Leave a comment

Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, Coolness, Democracy, Design, Economics, Geography, Innovation, Inspiration, Leading edge, Media, Name, Project management, Property, Resource management, Site, Structural engineering, Town planning, Urban design

Dubai skyscrapers | Martin Aircraft Company-designed jetpacks #NZ

Chief TV Published on Dec 31, 2015
Dubai Fire Address Hotel – Dubai Hotel On Fire Before New Years Eve Fireworks – 2015

### dezeen.com 31 December 2015
Huge fire breaks out at Atkins-designed Dubai skyscraper
On New Year’s Eve, a fire engulfed The Address Downtown Dubai hotel tower. Burning debris was seen falling from The Address, designed by international architecture and engineering firm Atkins. The skyscraper occupies a site close to the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, which hosted a massive fireworks display despite the nearby blaze. The 302-metre-tall, 63-storey Address tower was completed in 2008, and is currently the 19th tallest building in the Emirate. The fire engulfed around 20 floors of the building. The blaze was contained to the outside of the building. Internal sprinkler systems prevented it from spreading to the interior.

Starting in 2016, the Emirate plans to use jetpacks to reach people and deliver equipment during skyscraper fires.

█ Developed by New Zealand manufacturer Martin Aircraft Company, the jetpacks are being tailored to meet the needs of firefighters and rescue workers, including allowing them to be operated hands-free in hover mode. This will make it easier for firefighters to carry equipment or assess heat sources using thermal imaging cameras. “Dubai is leading the world in high-rises, and sometimes we have challenges or difficulties reaching those buildings,” Dubai’s Civil Defence chief Ali Hassan Almutawa told the Khaleej Times. “Sometimes we also find it difficult to communicate with people in those high-rises, especially when people are panicking from windows or balconies.”
Read more


Dubai skyline during Torch fire Feb 2015 [via dezeen.com]Dubai skyline during Torch fire February 2015 [via dezeen.com]

[As at Nov 2015] Dubai is home to 911 high-rise buildings, 88 of which are taller than 180 metres (591 ft). Burj Khalifa, by Chicago office Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, is the world’s tallest structure at 828 metres (2,716.5 ft).

### dezeen.com 13 November 2015
Dubai to fight fires in world’s tallest skyscrapers using jetpacks
Dubai, home to the world’s tallest skyscraper, will use jetpack-equipped firefighters in high-rise emergencies as early as next year. A fleet of emergency-service jetpacks will be delivered to the Dubai Civil Defence in 2016, according to the Khaleej Times. Specially trained firefighters will use the jetpacks to tackle flames in some the city’s tallest buildings. The news comes months after fire tore through one of the world’s tallest residential structures located in the United Arab Emirates city. The fire broke out on the 50th floor of the 79-storey Torch, a 336-metre-high skyscraper, in February.

“In an emergency situation, we can’t use the elevators and have to depend on firefighters physically climbing ladders,” said Dubai’s Civil Defence chief Ali Hassan Almutawa. “With this we can lift equipment for our firefighters.”

“There will now be a new generation of firefighters with this,” said Martin Aircraft Company CEO Peter Coker, who went on to explain how “easy” the flying machines are to operate. “It’s got a fly-by-wire system that has a sort of flight computer, so the aircraft is very stable,” he said. “If you let go of everything, the aircraft will come to a hover.”

Manned test flights of a Martin Aircraft Company-designed jetpack were first approved in 2013. The company claimed its design was the world’s first practical jetpack.

“In a few years they will likely be used by customers in a very controlled environment, and we’ll probably have situations in which we create clubs for people to go and fly the jetpacks,” said Coker.

The use of jetpack technology in the United Arab Emirates isn’t restricted to its emergency services. Earlier this month, footage emerged of two jetpack-equipped daredevils flying alongside a passenger plane over Dubai’s landmarks to promote the country’s Emirates airline company.
Read more

Clarification: The following footage, worth watching, doesn’t involve Martin Aircraft Company-designed jetpack componentry. Visit MAC’s website (link given above) to view their practical jetpack units.

Aeronauticator Published on May 14, 2015
Yves Rossy & Vince Reffet – Birdmans Fly over Dubai Sky
Flying like a bird is always human’s dream. And the dream comes true.
Join Jetman Yves Rossy and his protege, Jetman Vince Reffet as they explore the limits in the city of dreams. “The real dream is to be completely free.”

XDubai Published on Nov 4, 2015
Emirates: #HelloJetman
Armed with unguarded ambition and the vision to push boundaries beyond the unthinkable, Jetman Dubai and Emirates A380 take to the skies of Dubai for an exceptional formation flight. A carefully choreographed aerial showcase, conducted over the Palm Jumeirah and Dubai skyline, involving the world’s largest passenger aircraft and the experienced Jetman Dubai pilots Yves Rossy and Vince Reffet. Over the last three months, Emirates and the Jetman Dubai teams worked closely to diligently plan and coordinate every detail of this project. Featuring an all Original Soundtrack by Erik Groysman – “Flight”

Tourism and Events Published on Nov 7, 2015
Emirates HelloJetman Emirates A380 and Jetman Dubai Formation Flight Emirates Airline

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

1 Comment

Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, Coolness, Design, Economics, Geography, Innovation, Inspiration, Leading edge, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Project management, Property, Site, Structural engineering, Tourism, Town planning, Transportation, Urban design

WikiHouseNZ @ Christchurch #eqnz

WikiHouseNZ - BackYarder (via stuff.co.nz)Possible interior of a WikiHouseNZ project called the BackYarder
Photo: Tigran Haruyunyan, WikiHouse (via Stuff)

The new prototype, called the Backyarder, is the “nucleus of a much larger house”. –Danny Squires, WikiHouseNZ

### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 08:20, April 6 2015
WikiHouse project ‘a social enterprise’
A communal house-building network that started in the dark days after the Christchurch earthquake will be a reality this year. WikiHouse is an open hardware project, where experts design houses, or parts of them, and share their creations online for any house builder who wants to use them.
WikiHouseNZ co-founders and directors Danny Squires and Martin Luff will build a 25-30 square metre prototype house by the end of the year, they said at a launch event. The house will be fully enclosed, watertight, insulated, plumbed and wired for electricity and the internet. It would cost no more than a conventional house of the same size, Luff said.
The pair would seek consent for the building. It would initially be manufactured and assembled in WikiHouseNZ’s lab in Addington, but could be disassembled in hours and moved anywhere. WikiHouses are built from plywood shaped by a computer-controlled cutting machine. Components were fastened with plywood pegs rather than nails or screws.
The houses are more than “hobbyist prefab systems”, said Alastair Parvin, the London-based architect credited with launching the WikiHouse idea in 2011. The New Zealanders came aboard almost immediately and were in effect co-founders, Parvin told the launch via Skype. The New Zealand arm was a social enterprise. It generated profits but used them for a social good.
Read more

WikiHouse/NZ developed by Space Craft Systems
Space Craft Systems is a social enterprise forged in the crucible of post earthquake Christchurch to develop the WikiHouse system in NZ and revolutionise the way we create our built environments. http://spacecraft.co.nz/wikihouse-news/

Related Post and Comments:
23.4.14 WikiHouse.cc | open source construction set

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Leave a comment

Filed under #eqnz, Architecture, Business, Construction, Democracy, Design, Economics, Geography, Innovation, Inspiration, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Project management, Property, Site, Town planning, Urban design, What stadium

Dunedin product innovation and production #doubleglazing

### ODT Online Mon, 7 Jul 2014
Retrofit double-glazing system catches on
By Sally Rae
A Dunedin-designed double-glazing system, which started as a concept drawn on a paper pie packet, is now being sold in Australia. Thermawood, a patented retrofit double-glazing system for existing timber joinery, was the brainchild of Graeme Clarke, whose background was both as a joiner and a glazier. The system was developed around drainage.
Read more

Website: Thermawood Otago

Thermawood graphicFrom the website: ‘An advanced double glazing system for existing timber joinery. A unique, patented double glazing system which has been approved and tested to building standard NZS4211:2008 the industry standard for weather-tightness for windows and doors. Experienced, skilled tradesmen ensure quality workmanship. Thermawood is proudly locally owned and operated from Dunedin, servicing the wider Otago region. All Thermawood materials are 100% NZ made and the Grandadapter is manufactured locally in Mosgiel. Thermawood Otago are also experienced in and offer – retrofitting aluminium windows and doors, double glazing, re-glazing, frameless glass showers, balustrades, painted glass splash-backs, mirrors, architectural glazing systems.’

Note: What if? Dunedin can’t endorse the product; we can confirm it’s a locally available building option.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: thermawoodotago.co.nz

Leave a comment

Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, Design, Economics, Innovation, Inspiration, Media, Name, New Zealand, Otago Polytechnic, People, Project management, Property

WikiHouse.cc | open source construction set

WikiHouse is an Open Source construction system that makes it possible for anyone to design, download, adapt, share and ‘print’ CNC-milled* high-performance, low-cost houses that they can assemble by hand with minimal formal skill or training, anywhere.

WikiHouse is a non-profit project, developing hardware and software which is open and shared in the commons, owned by everyone.

WikiHouse diagram 1

The purpose of the WikiHouse construction set is that the end structure is ready to be made weathertight using cladding, insulation, damp-proof membranes and windows. WikiHouse is still an experiment in its early stages.

*CNC means Computer Numerical Control. A computer converts the design produced by Computer Aided Design software (CAD), into numbers. The numbers can be considered to be the coordinates of a graph and they control the movement of the cutter. In this way the computer controls the cutting and shaping of the material.

Visit the Open library and read the Design guide.

All the information shared on WikiHouse.cc is offered as an open invitation to the public, collaborators and co-developers who are interested in putting Open Source solutions to these problems in the public domain. If you are working on one of these, or would like to know (or do) more, please contact WikiHouse.

TED 23 May 2013

Alastair Parvin: Architecture for the people by the people
Architect Alastair Parvin presents a simple but provocative idea: what if, instead of architects creating buildings for those who can afford to commission them, regular citizens could design and build their own houses? The concept is at the heart of Wikihouse.

TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world’s leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes (or less). Look for talks on Technology, Entertainment and Design — plus science, business, global issues, the arts and much more.

WikiHouse 2 (1)WikiHouse 1 (1)WikiHouse construction set (1)

Another profile:
WikiHouse prototype (1)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, Democracy, Design, Economics, Geography, Innovation, Inspiration, Media, Name, People, Project management, Property, Site, Town planning, Urban design

DCC: Jaunt to USA, explain

Dunedin at night [commons.wikimedia.org] 1Dunedin, March 2010. Benchill (Wikimedia Commons).

### ODT Online Fri, 3 Jan 2014
Streetlight ideas from US trip
By Debbie Porteous
Seeing the bright lights of some major American cities has given the man responsible for a street lighting revolution set for Dunedin some solid ideas. Dunedin city council roading maintenance engineer Peter Standring went to the United States last year to look at different technologies and visit cities that have started updating their street lighting.
Read more

Puzzled. The news story says Peter Standring went to USA.
But lower down, it says (our emphasis):

“Los Angeles was in many ways the world leader in the procurement, installation and development of LED technology, and the group was “very lucky” to have had one and a-half hours of Mr Ebrahimian’s time, Mr Standring said.”

What group? A DCC group? (or a USA group he tagged along with?) What have we paid for? A 2013 trip for one person to Los Angeles, Durham, Racine, Chicago, Phoenix and San Francisco —or a trip for a group of staff and their wives?
Clarification, please.


[via Upstart Incubator (@UpstartDunedin) who tweeted at 9:29 AM on Tue, Dec 31, 2013]

### mckinsey.com September 2013
How to make a city great
By 2030, 60 percent of the world’s population will live in cities. That could mean great things for economic growth — if the cities handle their expansion wisely. Here’s how.

What makes a great city? It is a pressing question because by 2030, 5 billion people — 60 percent of the world’s population — will live in cities, compared with 3.6 billion today, turbocharging the world’s economic growth. Leaders in developing nations must cope with urbanisation on an unprecedented scale, while those in developed ones wrestle with aging infrastructures and stretched budgets. All are fighting to secure or maintain the competitiveness of their cities and the livelihoods of the people who live in them. And all are aware of the environmental legacy they will leave if they fail to find more sustainable, resource-efficient ways of managing these cities.

Explore six diverse initiatives aimed at making cities great places to live and work.

To understand the core processes and benchmarks that can transform cities into superior places to live and work, McKinsey developed and analysed a comprehensive database of urban economic, social, and environmental performance indicators. The research included interviewing 30 mayors and other leaders in city governments on four continents and synthesizing the findings from more than 80 case studies that sought to understand what city leaders did to improve processes and services from urban planning to financial management and social housing.

The result is How to make a city great (PDF, 2.1MB), a new report arguing that leaders who make important strides in improving their cities do three things really well:

█ They achieve smart growth. Smart growth identifies and nurtures the very best opportunities for growth, plans ways to cope with its demands, integrates environmental thinking, and ensures that all citizens enjoy a city’s prosperity. Good city leaders also think about regional growth because as a metropolis expands, they will need the cooperation of surrounding municipalities and regional service providers. Integrating the environment into economic decision making is vital to smart growth: cities must invest in infrastructure that reduces emissions, waste production, and water use, as well as in building high-density communities.

█ They do more with less. Great cities secure all revenues due, explore investment partnerships, embrace technology, make organisational changes that eliminate overlapping roles, and manage expenses. Successful city leaders have also learned that, if designed and executed well, private–public partnerships can be an essential element of smart growth, delivering lower-cost, higher-quality infrastructure and services.

█ They win support for change. Change is not easy, and its momentum can even attract opposition. Successful city leaders build a high-performing team of civil servants, create a working environment where all employees are accountable for their actions, and take every opportunity to forge a stakeholder consensus with the local population and business community. They take steps to recruit and retain top talent, emphasise collaboration, and train civil servants in the use of technology.

Mayors are only too aware that their tenure will be limited. But if longer-term plans are articulated — and gain popular support because of short-term successes — leaders can start a virtuous cycle that sustains and encourages a great urban environment.
Link to source

McKinsey&Company The material on this page draws on the research and experience of McKinsey consultants and other sources. To learn more about their expertise, visit the Infrastructure Practice, Public Sector Practice, Sustainability & Resource Productivity Practice.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

*Image: commons.wikimedia.org – Central city view of Dunedin, New Zealand, at night from Signal Hill lookout. The dark horizontal band above the centre of the photo is the Town Belt. Some landmarks including First Church of Otago and the Dunedin Railway Station are visible near the centre. Photo by Benchill, 9 March 2010.


Filed under Adventure sport, Architecture, Business, Concerts, Construction, DCC, Democracy, Design, Economics, Events, Fun, Geography, Heritage, Hotel, Innovation, Inspiration, Media, Museums, Name, New Zealand, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Tourism, Town planning, Urban design, What stadium

Dunedin cycleways: Calvin Oaten greeted by DCC silence

Tuesday, December 03, 2013 4:38 PM

Subject: Fwd: Transport Strategy

Calvin Oaten notes:
As you can see I copied [the below] to most. So far, the only response has been Cr Lee Vandervis. He agrees. [Chief executive] Sue Bidrose hasn’t come back with so much as a “rubbish” or “interesting”.
The rest, well I am wondering if this new crop are going to be any better than the last. You would think I would get shot out of the water by at least Cr Richard Thomson, but nothing. All I want is to open up the debate.
Looks like it is just too hard for them to think about the issue. Get elected, get the remuneration sorted and then back to sleep. “El Duce”, of course, wishes I was on another planet.

—— Forwarded Message
From: Calvin Oaten
Date: 1 December 2013 11:33:36 AM NZDT
To: Dave Cull
Cc: Hilary Calvert, Jinty McTavish, Lee Vandervis, John Bezett, Kate Wilson, Chris Staynes, Mike Lord, Aaron Hawkins, Neville Peat, Doug Hall, Andrew Noone, David Benson-Pope, Sue Bidrose, Richard Thomson
Subject: Fwd: Transport Strategy

Hello Dave,
I have been reading the article Sharing the Road by Shane Gilchrist in Saturday’s ODT, and was particularly interested in your comments. You point out the reason why council began this process in the first place: “It’s about safety on Dunedin’s one-way system.” “Council, in collaboration with the NZTA, is both resolved and obligated to make our one-way street system safer. That’s what we asked NZTA to do after the last death. Let’s be clear: It is the NZTA’s responsibility to make state highways safer.” A very laudable position, but is the seeming solution necessarily the right one?

To me it is a philosophical question: If it is purely about safety and preservation of life then surely cyclists on the one-way would be wrong. History has proven that. If it is about ‘freedom of choice’ then it would be a matter for responsible persons or parents to weigh up the situation then opt for a choice, it being on their own heads. Either way, nothing would need to be done to alter the status quo. I would have no problem with that.

Then there is the matter of alternatives. Continue reading


Filed under Business, Construction, DCC, Design, Economics, Geography, Inspiration, Name, NZTA, People, Politics, Project management, Town planning, Urban design