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Category: PERFORMANCE

milestones in the pursuit of better performing buildings


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The Space of Power vs. The Power of Space

The Space of Power vs. The Power of Space
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Soon after it was announced that Riken Yamamoto had been awarded the 2024 Pritzker Prize, V asked me if I’d read the book of the title. I said I hadn’t but, a few days later, I came across a copy of the book in the university library and knew I had to give it a […]

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Fast Food

Fast Food
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Japan’s first high-speed rail link known to English speakers as the “Bullet Train” but to Japanese as the (Tokaido) Shinkansen [東海道新幹線, lit. New Arterial Line], began operating between Tokyo and Osaka almost sixty years ago on October 1, 1964, the same year as the Tokyo Olympic Games. It was the realization of a 1940 proposal for […]

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The Cost of Space

The Cost of Space
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I know it’s common practice in Western Europe, Japan and China, for residential unit listings to include not only the price but also the floor area of the dwelling. Some agents will even provide the cost per square metre so you can make your own judgment about the effects of factors such as location, view […]

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An Architecture of Sharing (2’nd Attempt)

An Architecture of Sharing (2’nd Attempt)
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This post is a reworking of a post of almost exactly one year ago, in an attempt to find a better way of approaching the subject. It’s mostly the preamble that’s different as the manifestations remain much the same although some of my examples are more extreme. This is because an architecture of sharing isn’t […]

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Game On!

Game On!
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In my last post I made some observations on the project plan below but I had to ask myself what I would have done with the same building and a similar brief. From what I understand from the Architectural Record article, the brief was to get as many units onto the site as inexpensively as […]

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Feasibility Study

Feasibility Study
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Here’s where I left it in Sky Rectangle – a proposal for interlocking back-to-back apartments arranged in rows half-stacked and half-terraced, with both the apartments and access corridors illuminated and ventilated by 4m x 8m shafts open to the sky and corridor. In that post I mentioned how the images above are just my impressions of […]

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Architecture Myths #33: Served and Servant Spaces

Architecture Myths #33: Served and Servant Spaces
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The notion of served spaces and servant spaces has been around for a while in architecture and we accept this apparent opposition as a conceptual certainty. After all, what could make more sense than mapping an archaic but entrenched social classification onto buildings? The nomenclature is easy to understand as it mirrors that of masters […]

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Chinese Simple Made

Chinese Simple Made
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The Chinese language is the world’s only language that doesn’t have an alphabet. Each of its 3,000 essential characters has a pronunciation, intonation, meaning and writing stroke order that must be learned and remembered. It’s a lot. So I’ve used the English alphabet to organize some examples of Chinese fit-for-purpose and make it easier to […]

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Fit for Purpose

Fit for Purpose
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A few months ago I bought a new iMac. It wasn’t my first so I knew it’d be delivered in a plain brown cardboard secondary box as a precaution against opportunistic theft, even though this stops the inner box advertising the company and one’s smugness. In a masterful example of packaging design, the side of […]

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Design: Free at Last!

Design: Free at Last!
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Before we had design, those of us who were wealthy enough could have craftspersons design and make objects for our amusement and/or use. Not everyone had Russian Imperial family levels of wealth but aspiring households could have a tea service designed by a craftsperson and fabricated by them, somewhat impractically, from solid silver or gold. […]