Posts tagged with "D.C.":

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Zaha Hadid Architects designs pop-up pavilion for Il Makiage

Makeup brand Il Makiage has opened up a new Soho pavilion designed by Zaha Hadid Architects to coincide with the launch of their new 800-product collection. The pavilion’s angular tunnel of ribbons with alternating gloss and matte finishes mimics the makeup’s packaging in exploded form. Each of the ribbons is slightly different and lighting is installed in them and around the mirrors, helping shoppers accurately choose the right color and tone. Kar-Hwa Ho, head of interiors at Zaha Hadid Architects, said that they “wanted to create an environment defined by the woman celebrated by Il Makiage,” adding that the pavilion is intended to be a “personal space that’s all about her.” The mobile pavilion will be open in Soho for six months and a second New York City pavilion will be opening in Flatiron this summer. Zaha Hadid Architects is also developing the permanent Il Makiage New York boutique, as well as locations in D.C. and Miami.
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After years of delay and $200 million, Washington D.C.’s 2.2-mile-long streetcar route opened to the public this weekend

After years of delay, Washington, D.C.'s $200 million dollar streetcar opened to the public this Saturday. Initially, the D.C. Streetcar was intended to be a modern-day streetcar network that would make other cities' streetcars bow down. The first segment was supposed to open ten years ago, and the planned route was to run 20 to 40 miles. Today, though, the streetcar scales a modest 2.2 miles, with a route that begins from behind Union Station and runs along H and Benning streets to end at the RFK Stadium parking lot. As expected by the public and feared by public officials, opening day was full of excitements and fraught with delays. Some riders were incredulous: https://twitter.com/ShortFormErnie/status/704311908585881601 Others, including Mayor Muriel Bowser, right, selfied on a packed ride... https://twitter.com/MurielBowser/status/703615386445443072 ...while The Washingtonian captured a video that reminds viewers that this streetcar has average speeds of 12 to 15 miles per hour. https://twitter.com/washingtonian/status/703604307615158272 Despite a fare of $0 for the first six months, the streetcar has limitations. Trains run every quarter hour, only run until 2 a.m., and not at all on Sundays due to limited capacity. (DDOT officials, The Washington Post reports, left three cars outside, unprotected from the weather, for a few years, damaging one so badly that it was not put into service.) For those with more burning questions about the streetcar, the paper produced a handy streetcar FAQ for the grand opening.
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Behold the “candy desk,” a secret stash of treats in the U.S. Senate

For those in attendance, the State of the Union can be exhausting. Standing up, sitting down, standing up and clapping politely for hours saps the energy of even the most ardent politicians. If viewers at home see senators sneaking out of the House during tonight's speech, don't worry: those elected officials are probably headed for the Senate's "Candy Desk." The history of the desk is short and sweet: In 1965, Senator George Murphy (R-CA) began stocking Desk 80 with candy for his fellow legislators. According to Architect of the Capitol, "In every Congress since that time, a candy desk [sic] has been located in the back row on the Republican side of the aisle and adjacent to the chamber's most heavily used entrance." The Candy Desk raises some vital questions: are there treats in the replica desk in the Kennedy Institute's replica Senate Chamber? Are they edible? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1Xery2gOVc During the 114th Congress, Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) is assigned to Desk 80. In a January 2015 press release (and the video above) Sen. Toomey mused on the responsibilities of the Candy Desk steward:
"The Candy Desk duty is Mounds of responsibility. I campaigned for this assignment on the platform of life, liberty, and the pursuit of Peeps and hope Pennsylvania's treats will sweeten the bitter partisan atmosphere. I plan to stock the Candy Desk with Pennsylvania's finest chocolate and deliciousness to ensure a surplus of sweets. We are home to the best confectioners in the world. Hershey's, of course, is headquartered in Central Pennsylvania. Mars makes Three Musketeers in Elizabethtown. Just Born creates Peeps in Bethlehem. And we are proud of our smaller candy makers too including Asher's in Kulpsville, Wilbur Chocolate in Lititz, Josh Early Chocolates in the Lehigh Valley, and many, many more."
AN reached out to the senator's Washington, D.C. office to find out what candy Sen. Toomy prefers. Bill Jaffee, Toomey's press assistant, stated that the desk is currently stocked with "Kit Kats, Hershey’s almond bars, Peanut Chews, Pennsylvania Dutch chocolate caramels, Milky Way, and Mike n' Ike." In a great show of bipartisan goodwill, Democrats may partake in the snacks, too.
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Product> Sustainable and Green Products from Greenbuild 2015

The 14th annual Greenbuild International Conference and Expo took place November 18–20 in Washington, D.C. This year’s expo featured the latest and greatest products and materials in sustainable design. Check out these cutting-edge green building products from the show. SageGlass Electrochromic Glass SageGlass Control interior sunlight and glare without affecting scenic views with SageGlass Electrochromic Glass. Equipped with electronic tinting and clearing capabilities, this dynamic glass is suitable for windows, skylights, and curtain walls. The glass also helps reduce energy consumption and building cooling loads. Deep Dive Kirei Kirei teamed up with Maine Heritage Timber to create Deep Dive, a collection of reclaimed timber that can be used for wallcoverings, ceilings, and millwork. Deep Dive is available in two specifications: Heritage Plank and Shadow Wood. The ½-inch-thick Heritage Plank comes in three widths, lengths that range from 1 to 4 inches, and both prefinished and unfinished options. Featuring a mix of thicknesses, Shadow Wood is available in three widths and lengths. TGI-Spacer M Technoform This durable and lightweight window spacer works hard to reduce unwanted drafts and condensation on the interior surface of window glass. TGI–Spacer M comes in a wide variety of size configurations and six neutral colorways—Black, Light Grey, Dark Grey, White, Champagne, and Bronze. Custom sizes and colors are also available. Topspin Draper Inc. Topspin is a retractable interior and exterior shading system comprised of a series of fabric panels and spring rollers. This system can be installed on horizontal, vertical, and sloped glazing, and it’s capable of withstanding wind speeds up to 38 mph. Topspin is available in widths up to 10 feet and lengths up to 40 feet. SkyScape Pregrown Modular System Firestone This 15-inch-by-20-inch vegetative roof system features a foundation comprised of 100 percent recycled high-density polypropylene and a durable honeycomb structure that allows plants to share moisture and nutrients. Each module weighs 50 lbs., features an interlock below grade on all four sides to withstand high winds, and manages stormwater through unitized moisture retention reservoirs. Autodesk Insight 360 Autodesk With the Autodesk Insight 360 software program, architects can easily access building energy and environmental performance data, such as whole building energy, heating, cooling, daylighting, and solar radiation simulations. The interactive software allows architects to create 3-D models with Revit and FormIt 360 Pro, giving them an inside look at real-time performance outcomes.
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Last year a labyrinth, now a giant ball pit: National Building Museum hosts indoor beach in its Great Hall

The magnificent, four-story Great Hall of the National Building Museum is now a site for executing cannonballs, rolling on the floor laughing, and other acts of gleeful revelry. A giant ball pit filled with recyclable translucent plastic orbs cuts between the colossal Corinthian columns, bounded by an enclosure made from scaffolding, wooden panels, and perforated mesh all painted stark white. A mirrored wall at one end creates the illusion of an unending abyss of translucent orbs. Bordering the enclosure is a 50-foot “shoreline,” filled with umbrellas and monochromatic beach chairs for lounging in the sunshine that filters through the window-laden ceiling four stories above. Adults can recline on “dry” land with a book, play paddleball, or have a drink at the snack bar. The installation, titled The BEACH was dreamed up by Brooklyn-based design firm Snarkitecture, which bills it as “an exciting opportunity to create an architectural installation that reimagines the qualities and possibilities of material, encourages exploration and interaction with one’s surroundings, and offers an unexpected and memorable landscape for visitors to relax and socialize within.” The fun-fest is part of the National Building Museum’s ‘Summer Block Party’ series, which last year hosted Big Maze by the Bjarke Ingels Group. Visitors wandered through an 18 foot-high maple plywood structure inspired by ancient labyrinths, garden and hedge mazes of 17th and 18th-century Europe and modern American corn mazes.
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House Bill Seeks To Boot Gehry From Eisenhower Memorial Project, AIA Says Not Cool

A new bill before the U.S. House of Representatives is seeking to build consensus to junk Frank Gehry's design for the Eisenhower Memorial on the National Mall. The bill, known as the Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial Completion Act, was proposed by Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah). It cites concerns over the controversial nature of the design and its escalating costs (currently estimated at well over $100 million) and seeks to "facilitate the completion of an appropriate national memorial to Dwight D. Eisenhower." Opposition to Gehry's proposal has been brewing for some time. The antagonists include members of Eisenhower's family and the National Civic Art Society, which published a 153-page report that called Gehry's scheme a "travesty" and a "Happy McMonument." The AIA feels differently. The association released a statement opposing Rep. Bishop's bill. The statement does not express an opinion about the value of Gehry's design, but rather disapproves of the "arbitrary nature" of this exercise of "governmental authority." Lodge your feelings about the bill and/or Gehry's design in the comments section of this post.
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Discover the Landscape Architecture of Washington D.C.

Washington, D.C., is often admired for its monuments. Now there is another part of our nation's capital that its 19 million annual visitors can tour and enjoy. The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) has recently announced the launch of an online mobile-friendly guide meant to give not only tourist, but also locals a new perspective on the historic, modern, and contemporary landscapes in Washington, D.C. and Arlington, VA. Created by the ASLA in partnership with 20 nationally recognized landscape architects, The Landscape Architect's guide to Washington, D.C., elucidates each site with the knowledge and perspective of a professional. Each designer was asked to present their site in a manner that would allow visitors to gain an understanding of how the location's design influences them and their sentiments about the area. This free online guide covers more than 75 landscapes organized into 16 distinct tours, highlighting how the city's lively public realm has evolved and developed over the years. Demonstrating the importance of landscape architecture in urban design, the website shows the greater role that this field plays in designing the interstitial spaces between a city's buildings and its public realm. Each tour includes printable walking or biking maps. The guide is free so as to be accessible to all and is noted as the first of many guides to come. To view the guide visit www.asla.org/guide
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Mayne Street

Granted he's won the Pritzker Prize and had a string of recent successes, but all the same we were more than surprised to get a forwarded White House press release from Morphosis today touting the appointment of Thom Mayne, one of the industry's gruffer individuals, to the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities. He is the only practicing architect on the list. Created in 1982, the committee, according to its website, brings, well, the arts and humanities into the White House. Headed by the First Lady, activities under the previous administration included an "unprecedented" cultural exchange with China, a "bi-national cultural communique" with Mexico, and the creation of the Coming Up Taller awards to honor school-age artists. Of the 24 other committee members, there is one other architect, Christine Forester, though she has left the field for marketing and branding in the 1980s according to the release. Noted green guy and urban thinker Ed Norten is also a committee member, as are other notables Teresa Heinz Kerry, Yo-Yo Ma, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kerry Washington, Forest Whitaker, and Anna Wintour. And despite our initial suspicions, a search of public records show no political contributions on behalf of Mayne.
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Sidwell It Is

As if we haven't written enough about Barack Obama or schools of late (what can we say, we're in the tank with the rest of the press), we still can't help but weigh in on the Obamas' decision to send their daughters to the Sidwell Friends School. Sure, there's been tons said already about the school's Quaker values and its symbolic standing in D.C., even the hypocrisy of the choice. But what really matters--and hopefully speaks volumes for the coming administration--is the school itself. No, not the teachers. We're talking about the building, and the middle school in particular, which happens to be the first LEED Platinum grade school in the country. Here's what I wrote about the school in a Studio Visit last year with the firm behind the project, KieranTimberlake Associates (KTA):
The Sidwell Friends School has always fostered environmental stewardship, as befits the Quaker values on which the institution was founded. When it came time to renovate the dilapidated red brick middle school, administrators realized they had an opportunity to turn the entire school into a green classroom. "Everywhere the building functions environmentally, they wanted it to be an opportunity for learning," KTA senior associate Richard Maimon said. Among the features KTA included are a green roof that functions as a garden and lab; a graywater system that not only feeds a lush wetland but includes a diagram--which hangs near the wetland for all to see--explaining the system; and wooden louvres reclaimed from old wine barrels, which, like most of the material, are locally sourced. "It may be the only LEED Platinum school in the country, but the real point is to teach," Maimon said.
Steve Kieran happened to be visiting the school on Monday, just days after the announcement was made, and said that everyone was thrilled by the news, including himself. "Sure, I'm proud," he said in a phone interview from the firm's offices in Philadelphia. "In this regard, it's probably the totality of the whole picture that's involved [that drove the Obamas' decision]. Certainly part of that picture is the whole greening of the campus and having the first LEED Platinum school." "It's a wonderful thing for us and the school, it's a wonderful thing for green design," he added. "Given Obama's stated agenda, it would be stunning if it weren't part of the decision to attend." While only Malia, 11, will start off at the school straight away as she enters fifth grade, her younger sister, Sasha, 7, has four years at the lower school to contend with first. We bet it's worth the wait.