Posts tagged with "Acoustics":

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Harvard study suggests open-office layouts hurt communication

Open-plan offices are all the rage. Companies continue to strip away walls, push desks together, and create higher energy environments in the name of fostering face-to-face interaction, but a new article titled "The impact of the ‘open’ workspace on human collaboration" published in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences presents findings that suggest that open office designs might actually reduce in-person interaction. The article reports on a study conducted by Ethan Bernstein and Stephen Turban of Harvard Business School that is the first to quantifiably measure human interaction before and after implementing an open-office floorplan. The researchers tracked productivity among 52 individuals and discovered that taking away physical barriers caused employees to erect their own methods of isolation. The sample population was outfitted with badges that would measure the frequency and length of conversations, and that data was combined with email and instant message tracking. At the end of the 15-day study, researchers had found that employees spent 72 percent less time interacting in person and instead sent 56 percent more emails and 67 percent more instant messages, and that those messages were 75 percent longer on average. The company also reported that overall productivity had decreased after the layout change, which researchers attributed to less information being conveyed over email than in person. This dramatic change in interaction patterns was attributed to employees' increased visibility and lack of privacy. Once coworkers were able to see each other’s screens and more easily overhear conversations, they reportedly wore headphones more, cutting down on approachability, and tried to look busy at their computers, which meant sending more emails. Ultimately, the report found that the projected increases in productivity and promised spontaneous meetings ran up against the fundamental human need for privacy. Researchers also cautioned that while removing barriers would seem like an intuitive way to have employees engage with each other, mandated social interaction was much less efficient than occasional meetings. The downsides of designing office- and barrier-free workplaces, other than the acoustic challenges, aren’t new. AN questioned the trend in 2013 after a series of articles raised concerns that the privacy-communication tradeoff wasn’t working in employees' favor. A growing number of workers are also searching for quieter environs and wellness spaces outside of the office. While it’s unlikely that this report will be the final nail in the coffin of trendy industrial workplaces with rows of undifferentiated benching, it may help architects and interior designers keep privacy in mind when designing these spaces in the future.
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Studio Gang will design enormous, acoustically-attuned domes for the National Building Museum

Studio Gang will install a human hive in the halls of the National Building Museum this summer. The Chicago- and New York–based studio will erect thousands of wound paper tubes to create three domed rooms, the tallest of which will stretch 60 feet into the air. The tubes, a sustainable building material, range in height from a few inches to ten feet. The installation, aptly named Hive, will anchor the D.C. museum's Summer Block Party, a series of temporary commissions inside its Great Hall. Previous participants include James Corner Field Operations (2016), Snarkitecture (2015), and BIG (2014). “When you enter the Great Hall you almost feel like you’re in an outside space because of the distance sound travels before it is reflected back and made audible,” said Studio Gang founding principal Jeanne Gang, in a prepared statement. “We’ve designed a series of chambers shaped by sound that are ideally suited for intimate conversations and gatherings as well as performances and acoustic experimentation. Using wound paper tubes, a common building material with unique sonic properties, and interlocking them to form a catenary dome, we create a hive for these activities, bringing people together to explore and engage the senses.” The firm's installation will compress the capacious Great Hall, with its imposing Corinthian columns, into intimate spaces for conversation, playing musical instruments, or cooperative building activities for children (and adults so inclined). The tubes also feature reflective silver exteriors and vivid magenta interiors, creating a spectacular visual contrast with the Museum’s historic nineteenth-century interior. Hive will be on view from July 4–September 4, 2017. Check nbm.org for more information about the exhibition and related programming.
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This otherworldly art installation brings sweet silence to New York City

In the city, it can be hard to find places of total quiet. A new exhibition at the Guggenheim, though, tries to tone down loud New York, at least for a couple of minutes.

Artist Doug Wheeler has created expansive works with luminous materials since the 1960s. His latest piece, PSAD Synthetic Desert III, creates the impression of infinite space as it plunges visitors into almost complete silence. With help from what are essentially large Magic Erasers, Wheeler transformed a regular museum gallery into an almost totally silent space meant to evoke the northern Arizona desert.

Wheeler first conceived of Synthetic Desert in the late 1960s and early 1970s, but this is the first time his installation has been realized. Tucked away on an upper floor of the Guggenheim, visitors pass through three sound-cushioned antechambers before entering the installation on a carpeted gangway.

Save for a recording of the desert, the luminous purple-gray space is so soundless you can hear a whole constellation of funny bodily noises that are typically unhearable in everyday life. While sound in a quiet room registers at 30 decibels, in Wheeler's semi-anechoic chamber, noise levels check in at about 10 to 15 decibels.

To achieve this super-quiet, the museum used 1,000 pieces of sound-absorbing melamine foam on one side of the room and on the floor. 600 grey foam wedges line the walls, and 400 pyramids of the same material fill space below the platform where visitors sit and take it all in. The Guggenheim worked closely with Arup sound designers Raj Patel and Joseph Digerness to realize the exhibition, and BASF, the company that created the foam, is an exhibition sponsor.

PSAD Synthetic Desert III  is on view through August 2 at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. More information about reservations and walk-in tickets can be found on the museum's website.

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Peek inside the new restaurant and cocktail bar almost 1,000 feet above L.A.

With the recent completion of a Gensler-led renovation to the building’s lobby and uppermost floors, the addition of a terrifying glass slide by M. Ludvik Engineering, and the opening of 71Above, a smart restaurant and cocktail bar designed by Los Angeles–based Tag Front, L.A. suddenly has reason to reconsider what might be one of the city’s most easily overlooked landmarks: the U.S. Bank Tower.

The 1,018-foot stepped skyscraper at the heart of the city’s central business district was built in 1989 and designed by Henry N. Cobb of Pei Cobb Freed & Partners. Its 73 stories culminate in a flat-topped, multilevel penthouse suite formerly occupied by a boardroom. In recent years, the tower has struggled with high vacancy rates and the dramatic renovation comes as the building’s new owners, Overseas Union Enterprise Limited (OUE) aims to reinstate the building in the public’s mind.

Central to that effort is the Tag Front–led design for 71Above, located in the uppermost floor of that ex-board room. The overhaul has transformed a prototypical office building into a contemporary and noteworthy spot and modernized the spiky, crenelated cap sitting atop what is now—with the recent topping-out of the Wilshire Grand tower—L.A.’s second-tallest building. As a result, 71Above has been added to the city’s collection of remarkable spaces; there all can enjoy the tower’s panoramic views.

Tag Front described the project’s guiding principles as encompassing “the existing nature of the building, [the space’s] footprint, and the client’s desire for the dining and lounge areas to wrap around the entire building.” The space features wraparound atmospheric vistas thanks to special high-tech glass developed by SageGlass that very slightly changes opacity as the sun moves across the sky, minimizing heat and glare within the space and removing the need for view-blocking draperies.

The self-shading windows are framed by expanses of thin wood-panel piers suspended from the facade. These piers lurch forward at the molding line, pivot out over the dining room, and accentuate each aperture. In some areas, the panels conceal collapsible partitions that can be pulled out to make private dining rooms. Along a central area, the same wood paneling is used to frame the restaurant’s wine collection.

The ceiling spanning between these two areas, however, is a testament to the union of geometric articulation and functionality. Here, Tag Front installed a ceiling configuration, developed by architectural-products manufacturer Arktura specifically for the project, that consists of a hexagonally shaped grid of woven baffles made of recycled plastic that dampen sound. This arrangement complements the city stretching out just over the precipice, mimicking what, from nearly a thousand feet above, looks like an orderly, gridded urban expanse.

According to Tag Front, the design team focused on the spatial and acoustical qualities of the ceiling from the beginning of the project. “After going through five or six different types of solutions and modeling each one [using 3-D software], we finally decided on the hexagonal, cellular baffle ceiling,” Tag Front explained. “We felt that due to its nature, the hexagonal cells were able to adapt to the complex, circular, and faceted geometries of the building in a much more interesting way, filling most of the space with their detailed, ornate nature and at the same time leaving strategic voids where the hexagonal brass chandeliers were suspended below them.”

Tag Front explained that Arktura had been experimenting with repeated acoustical baffle modules suspended from thin-gauge wire to create a flexible, unobtrusive, and highly functional ceiling made of recycled materials. “We came across a miniature mock-up version of one and pushed them and the client to make it into an oversize version and a suspension system that also allowed the cells to move up and down vertically along with the cellular horizontal movement,” the architects said. “Everything evolved from that moment.”

In the end, the team of designers, fabricators, and carpenters came together to create a space that is relatively novel for the city: one of the few observation-deck-level restaurants not perched on a mountainside.

Resources

Structural Engineering Services Nabih Youssef Associates

Ceiling Assembly Arktura

Glasswork

Altered Glass (213) 327-2016

Exterior Windows SageGlass

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Daniel Libeskind to take over Frankfurt with “One Day in Life” musical exhibition

On May 21st, "One Day in Life," a 24-hour musical experience, will take over the German city of Frankfurt. The two day event will feature 75 performances sprawled across the city in unusual locations, all curated by Polish-American architect Daniel Libeskind.

Initiated and commissioned by the Alte Oper (Old Opera) Frankfurt, the project seeks to break free from the conventional concert hall framework. The locations, as chosen by Libeskind, range from the Commerzbank Arena (Frankfurt's soccer stadium) to hospital operating rooms, boxing arenas, Oskar Schindler's house, and even the underground repositories of the German National Library. The music has also been chosen by Libeskind, showcasing an equally eclectic diversity. Renowned artists and students will perform classical and contemporary orchestral numbers as well as Indian Ragas and electronic music.

To ensure that as many visitors get a chance to be involved, performances will be repeated multiple times at each location, with two-hour intervals. A full listing of the program can be found on the event website.

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Product>Pump up the volume

Acoustic accents that not only lead to better sound quality, but also help to beautify a space. Zintra Acoustic Solutions MDC The newest collection from MDC offers a variety of different acoustical options that range from a Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) rating of 0.26to0.60, depending on the design. They offer a large selection of products run the gamut from wall panels to sculptural ceiling-hung structures that are available in a variety of colors and patterns. These allow designers to make them stand-out or fade into the background. Gaia Acoustic Panel Blå Station Gaia (which means 'nature') is the newest sound-reduction paneling collection from Blå Station. The collection is divided into four pieces that represent the four elements (earth, fire, wind, water) which can be combined to create an array of different patterns. The Warm moulded Formfelt tiles are available in five colors. Parentesit Freestanding Arper Arper's Parentesit line has expanded to include freestanding models that can be used to create additional private work or meeting spaces in open layouts. The modular system can realize a range of compositions and is available in four options: two round panels of different size, one square panel, and one combination square and round panel. BuzziLight BuzziSpace BuzziLight is now available in two new laser-cut patterns—Alhambra and Royal, that resemble antique metal lanterns and cast really beautiful shadows and diffused light as well as reducing noise pollution. Planostile Rockfon The Planostile lay-in metal ceiling system now includes aluminum panels with a flush reveal profile that are easily installed and provide long-term and acoustical performance. The panels include painted, metallic, and wood-look finishes.
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Goettsch Partners carefully sound designs Northwestern University’s new music school

One might not think to travel to Evanston to get a view of the Chicago skyline, but thanks to a new Goettsch Partners–designed Northwestern University campus building, that has changed. The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Center for the Musical Arts, home of Northwestern’s Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music, takes a transparent approach to the normally opaque music-school building typology. The result is a project that connects the far north side of campus all the way to downtown Chicago and Lake Michigan.

The five-story, 152,000-square-foot glass form sits in stark contrast to the campus’s 1977 Walter Netsch–designed Regenstein Hall of Music. The older and much smaller Brutalist structure was the campus’s main music building. Instead of discarding the Regenstein, Goettsch worked to wrap the building and provide interior connections on all levels to incorporate the two projects into one greater whole. For the first time, to the delight of the school, the entire music department, all 650 students, can be housed under one roof.

Nearly every space in the new building sits behind glass-curtain walls looking out over the water. This includes the classrooms, practice rooms, and even the main 400-seat recital hall. To achieve this, great care—and some inventive sound and material engineering—was needed to ensure the acoustically reflective glass would not compromise sound quality.

In the case of the practice rooms, the goal was to isolate each room from its neighbor. To do this, walls, floors, and ceilings received fairly typical sound-insulating techniques, including use of extra drywall and sealed doors. The trick was to stop sound from leaking from room to room along the curtain wall. To do this, custom-designed transoms between panes were engineered to acoustically isolate each room. The result is spaces in which students can practice without the distraction of the tuba next door but with the advantage of full daylight and uninterrupted views of the lake stretching out below them. Though the practice rooms were given special attention, it is in the main recital hall where the project was  able to really flex its acoustic-engineering muscle.

The 400-seat Mary B. Galvin Recital Hall is an intimate wood-lined space with one thing that few performance spaces can boast: a stunning view. Thanks to a 40-by-42-foot low-iron curtain wall behind the stage, concertgoers are treated to a vista of the Chicago skyline 13 miles to the south. Even more so than in the practice rooms, sound quality was absolutely paramount in the design of the space. In collaboration with Kirkegaard Associates sound engineers, the window wall was designed as a novel double layer of glass calibrated to control sound quality. The outer layer is a more typical curtain wall, while the inner layer is slightly canted to avoid the audience hearing any sound echoing off of the glass. The air space between the layers acts as an insulating buffer to keep the exterior noise of the occasional speed boat or Coast Guard helicopter from ruining  a concert. This space also allows for an operable fabric blackout sunshade to transform the layout and mediate solar gain, as the room is south facing. The undulating wood walls are designed to work with the canted glass wall to absorb even more errant sounds, and acoustic banners can be lowered from the ceiling to “tune” the space for each individual concert.

The performance spaces were not the only ones to benefit from the project’s transparency. The main entry leads into a bright three-story glass atrium that passes completely through the building, from campus to the lakefront. Every classroom and office also has access to daylight. Even the 150-seat black-box opera theater, typically a space that would be devoid of daylight, has a full glass wall, which can be blacked out when needed. 

Goettsch worked with renowned New York–based environmental design consultant Atelier Ten to achieve LEED Gold certification for the project. Along with working as sound insulation, the double-skin glass technology used throughout the building has a positive effect on energy efficiency. Additionally, the building incorporates a gray-water system, a design intention sensitive to the building’s location on the lake.

Ultimately, through sometimes unconventional means, the Ryan Center changes the way in which we expect music schools to look and perform. Not bound by small punch windows, practice rooms don’t have to be dark, uninviting spaces, while recitals can be set against the drama of an ever-active lake and a towering skyline. Resources: Curtain Wall Benson Industries, Inc.

Skylight System Super Sky Products Enterprises

Limestone Wall Eclad Stone Cladding System, Illinois Masonry Corp

Hall Glass Wall Harmon, Inc./Innovation Glass

Recital Hall Woodwork Imperial Woodworking Company

Choral and Opera Woodwork Glenn Rieder, Inc.

Stone Flooring SIMI

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Product> Off The Wall: Sophisticated Wall Coverings

From recycled acoustic installations to intricate tile mosaics, the latest wall coverings are innovative, functional, and downright stylish. Xorel Artform Carnegie This high-performance wall paneling is available in over 200 colors and textures, with four different panel shapes that are each available in three sizes. Each panel is individually upholstered by hand using sustainable materials. The amount of highly personalized combinations allows for a range of uses in both residential and commercial spaces. Origami Akdo Akdo’s expertly cut marble tiles allow the veining on each piece to perfectly align with each other to create the illusion of a seamless line that looks folded like traditional Japanese origami. The patterns are offered in a choice of four warm taupe or cool gray colorways. Sakura Collection Fireclay Tile Hand painted on 70-percent recycled clay tiles, the Sakura Collection displays subtle earth toned hues that are derived from traditional Japanese landscapes, including patterns that resemble mountains, tortoise shells, and river rocks. They are available in eight-by-eight and six-by-twelve sizes. Dimensioni Collection New Ravenna Inspired by the Byzantine technique of placing gold pieces at certain angles to reflect light, the New Leaf tile mosaic is available in four color ways of metallic glass: platinum, rose gold, champagne gold, and gunmetal. In addition, the collection has two other modern mosaic designs inspired by the landscapes of Italy crafted in Italian marble. Tweed Mesh Cambridge Architectural Cambridge is known for its architectural mesh; it has recently released two new patterns, including a “tweed” mesh made with stainless steel and brass that resembles the weave of a classic wool overcoat—so much so that it has been used in several lounges for British Airways. Geo Wallpaper Direct Part of a larger collection of hyper-realistic photo paper by Ella Doran, this print is intended to capture texture and sunlight on solid architectural surfaces and adds a touch of glamour to smaller spaces without the bulk of using actual stone.
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Product> Innovative Wall Coverings

These innovative coverings do not sacrifice quality or efficiency for style. Modular and adaptable acoustic panels allow for a changing environment, and tie-dye inspired wallpapers translate decades old techniques into modern applications. Scale Layer Design A highly adaptable modular system, Scale is an acoustic partition that is intended to grow or shrink with an ever-evolving workplace. The system has a recycled aluminum stand and is comprised of injection molded recyclable ABS with pressed recycled hemp tiles available in multiple colors. Echopanel Kirei EchoPanel tiles are made out of 60-percent recycled plastic bottles, eco-friendly dyes, and no added adhesives—earning them a GreenTag certification. The tiles retain up to 85 percent of ambient noise and are endlessly customizable. There are more than 30 color options that can be printed with any image or laser-cut in a variety of shapes. Indigo Maya Romanoff Part of a limited edition collection inspired by Maya Romanoff’s studies in India and Southeast Asia in the late 60s, this pattern resembles a traditional fabric dying technique and is hand painted using indigo dyes on folded durable paper. Digital Imagery Moz Designs Designers can print custom photos on .040- to .090-inch thick aluminum with either a glossy or matte finish that can be used on many surfaces including walls, columns, and ceilings. Graphics can also be printed on solid core or perforated aluminum with a variety of special colors and gradients. Fade Walnut Wallpaper This beautiful peel-and-stick ombre tie-dye pattern is available in two colors and can be easily removed and replaced. It is also made of vinyl, which makes it ideal for areas with a lot of moisture. Banda Eskayel The tropics collection is designer Shanna Campanaro’s interpretation of beach motifs in Belize and Nicaragua. The prints are a modern take on traditional wallpaper motifs like toile, shibori, and palm leaves, and are available in a variety of color options.
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RPBW’s active double skin facade kick starts a “new generation” of campus design at Columbia University

Columbia University’s expansion has been selected by LEED for their Neighborhood Design pilot program, which calls for the integration of smart growth principles and urbanism at a neighborhood scale.

Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW) is designing four buildings to be built over the upcoming years as a first phase of Columbia University’s Manhattanville campus expansion. The first of these four projects to break ground is the Jerome L. Greene Science Center, a research facility used by scientists working on mind, brain, and behavior research. The facility is ten stories wrapped in nearly 176,000 square feet of building envelope, consisting of transparent floor-to-ceiling glazing. “Columbia’s existing buildings are sited massively on the ground, and the campus— for many reasons—is gated. However, the new Manhattanville campus will express the values of this century: tolerance, openness, permeability, and transparency. It’s a new generation of campus design,” said Antoine Chaaya, the RPBW partner in charge of the Columbia project.
  • Facade Manufacturer Enclos
  • Architects Renzo Piano Building Workshop; Davis Brody Bond, LLP (Architect of Record)
  • Facade Installer Enclos; Lend Lease (construction manager)
  • Facade Consultants Israel Berger & Associates, A Vidaris Company, NY; WSP Cantor Seinuk, NY (Structural Engineer); Jaros Baum & Bolles (MEP Engineer)
  • Location New York, NY
  • Date of Completion Late 2016 (projected)
  • System structural facades, double skin walls, metal and glass canopies
  • Products laminated and insulated low iron glass wall assemblies by Interpane
An elevated subway track along the east facade generated 88 dB of noise, which needed to be significantly reduced for occupant comfort. To achieve this, the architects created a double skin facade system that was sealed from the outside. It represents the fourth double skin facade developed by RPBW, and the first to include active air circulation, according to Chaaya. “What helped us to create this fourth typology of double skin is the constraint: The fact that it cannot be permeable to the outside. It has to be sealed, and at the same time we have to fight against potential condensation. We solve the problem by active air circulation from the bottom to the top of the building.” The resulting facade system provides superior blast resistance and thermal properties, while reducing sound transmission by 45 dB. The cavity of the facade assembly is 18 inches deep, sized just large enough for maintenance access. Highly purified and dehumidified air is filtered three times and slowly cycled up vertically through the cavity at two feet per minute, a rate that ensures quiet operation and no disturbance to shading devices within the cavity. Air in the cavity cycles at a rate of six air changes per minute, managing heat gain and condensation buildup in the cavity. Variations in the facade are generated from functional responses to solar orientation due to orientation, honestly expressing the interior functions of the building. The result is a sophisticated building enclosure, abiding by a rigorously minimal design aesthetic while nimbly adapting to environmental criteria.
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LMN Architects’ Collaborative Sound Cloud

Fabrikator

A system of 946 unique panels will produce optimal acoustics and aesthetics at the University of Iowa's new School of Music.

For a 700-seat concert hall at the new School of Music at the University of Iowa, Seattle-based LMN Architects wanted to design a high-performing ceiling canopy that would unify the many features of traditional theatrical and acoustic systems. The result is a 150-foot-long by 70-foot-wide surface composed of 946 suspended, intricately laced panels that incorporate complex, interdependent, and at times conflicting systems—including lighting, theatrics, speakers, sprinklers, and acoustical functionality—in a unified architectural gesture. "The system is sculptural for sure, but it had to conceal structural truss work, which was a major cost savings as opposed to building an acoustic container," said Stephen Van Dyck, a principal at LMN Architects. The design team worked with both parametric digital and physical models to coordinate the structural system with the acoustic, theatrical, audio/visual, lighting, fire, and material elements of the canopy. "From Day One, it was a digital model," he said. "We needed a smaller physical model to get everyone's head around making this happen physically. A three-foot room model has a big impact on ability to conceive." LMN fabricated the scale model, as well as a few full-sized components, on the firm’s 3-axis CNC mill.
  • Fabricators LMN Architects
  • Designers LMN Architects
  • Location Iowa City, Iowa
  • Date of Completion 2016
  • Material aluminum composite paneling
  • Process CNC mill
The canopy is divided into hundreds of panels, each of which is unique to accommodate the needs of the many systems. Along the back of the canopy's perimeter, panels feature large openings so that the sound profile of each concealed speaker passes through unimpeded. Other panels along the perimeter are designed with varying degrees of acoustic transparency relative to the size of openings on surrounding panels. Medium openings toward the back of the canopy house stage lighting, while smaller openings accommodate house lights. Panels with the smallest openings, or those less than 70 percent open, conceal sprinklers, while the solid panels that droop down over the stage are angled to effectively reflect sound into the house. "From the audience, the intent is for sound to reach you quickly rather than for other sounds to arrive slower," Van Dyck explained, "so the sculptural gesture brings sounds right back to the audience." The many consultants who contributed to the design worked in different digital formats. The acousticians used SketchUp; the lighting designers worked in Revit; and theater and audio/visual specifications were saved as DWG files. Each program was compatible with Rhino and, with a Grasshopper plugin, LMN was able to incorporate information from all other platforms. "The parametric model was very flexible and let us accommodate changes all along as developments came from other contributors," Van Dyck said of the design process, which he described as more cyclical than linear. The parametric capabilities of the digital tools that the team used helped facilitate a smooth and efficient documentation process during the mock ups, making it easy to go back through any kinks that were uncovered. LMN built the mockup from aluminum composite paneling, a relatively inexpensive metal system composed of two layers of aluminum with a composite core. The material is highly flexible and it can be bent by hand after scoring on the CNC mill. This process could potentially eliminate on-site fabrication requirements. Fabrication data generated by this production model will be applied to all 946 of the unique panels in the final project. Documents will go to bid this summer, and the building is expected to open in 2016.
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Unveiled> An Acoustic Renewal in Brooklyn by Bureau V

Brooklyn-based architecture practice Bureau V unleashed a spectacular design for the Original Music Workshop, a new non-profit arts organization which will open in 2013 with a wide range of musical programming, from classical to jazz to experimental sound. Located in the heart of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, the performance center was designed in collaboration with engineering gurus Arup and features state of the art acoustical technologies. Like any good construction in Brooklyn these days, the building is a high-tech, state-of-the-art renovation of a disused industrial building on Wythe and North 6th streets, just one block from the East River. In this case, it's an acoustic performance center with a series of variable acoustic treatments that allow the space to be tuned to specific instrumentation using acoustically isolated box-in-box construction, which minimizes background noise to studio levels inside the graffitied, hollowed-out remains of a sawdust factory. The result is a sublime collision of new and old: technology and ruin, progress and history, refinement and grit. Bureau V principal Peter Zuspan explained that OMW came to them with a "two-fold request: the space needed to be both acoustically superior and a comfortable and visually compelling space, a departure from the standard black box theater.” The acoustically-driven, geometrically complex chamber hall  will accomodate 170 chairs, or approximately 350 people standing. “The space is small enough to truly listen, while large enough to foster a sense of community,” said Bureau V principal Alexander Pincus. Because of its acoustical performance features, the space can double as a recording studio for up to 70 performers. For construction photos, click here.