Posts tagged with "Estonia":

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An Estonian office block receives a splash of color with an aluminum mesh facade

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Estonia-based architectural practice molumba has enlivened a suburban office block with a unique concrete and aluminum screen assembly. The project was commissioned by AS Elering—the nation’s largest transmission systems operator for electricity and natural gas—as a dramatic, three-fold expansion of the preexisting structure in Mustamäe, a southwestern neighborhood in the nation’s capital of Tallinn.
  • Facade Manufacturer Metal-Disain Oü (metal sheets), Talot AS (concrete panels), JU-Metall Oü
  • Architects molumba, Eeoo Stuudio Oü (interior)
  • Facade Installer Oma Ehitaja
  • Facade Consultants Novarc
  • Location Tallinn, Estonia
  • Date of Completion 2018
  • System Steel frame with prefabricated concrete panels and metal sheets
  • Products Metal-Disain Oü PW keevisrest
Over 140 turquoise mesh piers ring and visually buttress each elevation, a play on historical castellation and Gothic design found throughout Tallinn’s Old Town. The piers are built of full-length aluminum strips measuring 12 to 41 feet, which are in turn welded to a series of connecting bars. Each pier possesses its own steel support structure consisting of two internal, vertical columns fastened to the welded connecting bars. The design of the complex references the spindly and bundled power line, a ubiquitous feature across urban landscapes. AS Elering operates a multi-acre electrical substation next door. According to design lead Karli Luik, molumba envisioned the project as “the brain of the electricity and gas transmission network, monitoring and administrating their vitally important circulation.” As a vitally important aspect of Estonia’s energy infrastructure, the entire 40,000 square-foot complex is ringed by a perimeter wall fashioned of the same turquoise aluminum screen. For molumba, the bigger question was how to give the mesh triangles a truly functional quality outside of their aesthetic elements. The two planes of the piers form an acute isosceles triangle: the two congruent sides measure just under four feet while the base is approximately three feet. This shorter edge is placed atop the building’s 20 by 10 foot black precast concrete panels and wedged between window openings. With a 41-degree circumcenter angle, the piers function as effective passive sun shades for office functions within. Additionally, the mesh frame serves as an industrially-produced lattice screen for future vegetative growth to coil up the facade. The interior, designed by Stuudio Oü, features a design that similarly echoes the building's utilitarian function. Spiraling stairwells, built of concrete and steel, vertically course through the east and west elevations of the headquarters, while exposed pipes, cables, and pendant lamps made of recycled insulators line the ceiling and walls. A central vegetated courtyard and a two-story, wood-paneled stairwell, with steps of varying size, are the office block's principal communal areas. At the core of it all lies the "Brain," where the nation's energy transmission network is surveilled through a hippodrome of monitors.
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Tallinn Architecture Biennale re-imagines the capital of Estonia as a driverless city

As part of the city's unofficial bid to become the European Green Capital of 2018, Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, is re-imagining its layout in the Tallinn Architecture Biennale. https://vimeo.com/130414866 Home to nearly half a million people, the eastern European city asked architects and planners to imagine how the implementation of driverless cars could change public space among the cityscape as it strives to become a more people-friendly urban space. The focal point of the competition was the Viru intersection, located in the city center. According to Euronews, the intersection has been "remodeled, destroyed and rebuilt several times over the past century." A firm believer in sustainability, architect and urban planner Marten Kaevats spoke to Euronews about his thoughts on driverless cars and the city. “Self-driving cars means something like 10 times less cars in cities, which is quite radical, no congestion. When self-driving mobility comes, this means if there are 10 times less cars and cars use the same space a lot more efficiently than cars do now, what do we do with the (remaining) space? Because there will be too much of it. And now architects and landscape architects need to start being creative and have a new tool set.” Kaevats is the main curator of this third edition of the Tallinn Architecture Biennale. The winners of the competition were Enhanced Urban Movement, formed by Clement Lobbens and Frederique Barchelard. Otto Alver, the competition's curator said, “They are solving all of the problems we have concerning buildings around this area, dealing with cars, dealing with people on the square itself. They are actually bringing something new to Tallinn.” In its statement, Enhanced Urban Movement' said: "Our aim is not to reduce the number of cars or to predict the future of driverless cars but to promote a very strong public space compatible with several mobility systems. Relying on the existing values, the project is based on three strategic points: – To define a clear outline and a unique design solution for the ground that would absorb the present facilities, comply with a new landscape, and also reflect a symbolic value as a public space of identity; – To divide the square into clearly identified but strongly interrelated public space sequences emphasizing and articulating its present character and qualities; – To contour and define the new building spaces in relation to Viru Square. The new constructions outline the public space and readdress the existing buildings and spaces on the main square." The Tallinn Architecture Biennale runs until October 11.
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Pictorial> Twenty-one of the best pavilions from Milan Expo 2015

Milano Expo 2015 is rolling along, with 145 countries and a host of international organizations, civil society organizations, and corporations displaying their food-centric traditions and the latest sustainable agriculture and food production techniques. AN reported on the Expo when it opened:

a handful of designs...stand out as attempts to rethink the way we build and how it relates to modern agriculture and sustainable food production for the next century. Most of the pavilions use sustainable materials and construction methods that utilize national building techniques. Inside, exhibitions—often interactive—showcase biodiversity, culture, and food traditions of each nation.

Beyond the focus on food and agriculture, there is also a wealth of eye-catching architecture at the Milan Expo as well. Here is a collection of some of our favorite pavilions from this year's rendition. And be sure to check out our coverage of the Expo here.
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About that pipeline project…

Sarah Palin isn't the only one with pipelines on the brain: The Estonian installation in the Giardini recreates a section of Gazprom's proposed Nord Stream pipeline, that would run directly from Russia to Germany through the Baltic Sea. Naturally, some of the Baltic countries aren't wildly enthusiastic about this. Estonia doesn't have a pavilion of it's own, but that may be a good thing. The group placed a 63-meter-long yellow pipe running from the entry of the Russian pavilion: Goes straight past the Japan pavilion (hey, geographical accuracy isn't the point): And spits out—you guessed it—directly in front of the imposing German pavilion: Gas Pipe 3 Maybe it's a one-liner, but like every good joke, it is sharp and to the point.