Architects have long relied on engineers to help execute formally or functionally complex concepts. But, as Belzberg Architects founder Hagy Belzberg points out, "architects usually work out a schematic design" in response to a client's needs, "only later to invite the engineer to help substantiate their idea." Belzberg's own experience collaborating with facade engineers at Arup suggests a different approach—one in which the designers and consultants trade ideas and expertise from the very beginning. With Arup's Matt Williams, Belzberg will outline some of the benefits of a close association among AEC industry professionals through two cutting-edge case studies at next week's Facades+ LA conference. Belzberg and Williams' dialog workshop, "Process Shaping Design: Design, Digital Fabrication, and Delivery" is organized around two projects with distinct origins. The first is the Gores Group Headquarters (9800 Wilshire Boulevard) in Los Angeles. "The building will be a case study in how adaptive facades can help us reappropriate existing buildings so we don't have to knock them down," said Belzberg. Digital fabrication technology, he explained, allowed Belzberg Architects to craft a new envelope that is "highly sculptural and unique, but still performative." The second case study examines a series of commercial buildings in Mexico City. "It's the same digital fabrication on a new building," said Belzberg. In contrast to the more typical approach, Belzberg Architects brought Arup on board before touching pencil to paper (or hand to computer mouse). "What we're trying to promote is a case study in which we brought in the engineers on day one, so it becomes more performative, more efficient, and even more cost-effective," said Belzberg. Besides sharing some of their own work, Belzberg and Williams hope to use the workshop to dig into other examples—cases contributed by the participants themselves. "No one's going to have to do any homework, or any sketches," said Belzberg. "But we want people to come in with case studies of their own that we can work on: Not just questions and answers, but we're hoping that other architects will bring real-life scenarios so that we can brainstorm opportunities. It's not just about our work, but an opportunity to discuss audience case studies." To sign up for "Process Shaping Design" or another lab or dialog workshop, register today for Facades+ LA. Learn more and review the symposium agenda on the conference website.
Posts tagged with "Hagy Belzberg":
TORCH BEARERS On January 5, our New York colleagues attended a wake to mourn last month’s folding of I.D. magazine, the 55-year-old trusted chronicler of design where pioneer modernist Alvin Lustig was art director and a young John Gregory Dunne was an editor before turning to novels and screenplays. The bi-coastal bash was more of a gathering of the fellowship than a farewell, with Pentagram grandee Michael Bierut and former editors Chee Pearlman and Julie Lasky hosting. Fresh from Silicon Valley, newly appointed National Design Museum director Bill Moggridge, formerly of IDEO, was also there studying local rituals. YOU WISH Hagy Belzberg’s Skyline Residence sits on a gorgeous mountaintop ridge site. But much of its architectural innovation came cheap, with off-the-shelf parts and materials. Which made us sit up and take envious notice when we heard that the house sold for an over-the-rainbow $5.6 million, according to real-estate site Redfin. Maybe that means a new generation of buyers really value good design, or it could just be more proof of the old saw: location, location, location. However, Eavesdrop wants to believe it was the book-signing party for AN editor Sam Lubell’s new book Living West (own your own copy today!) that pushed the sale over the top. After all, Steven Ehrlich, Hadrian Predock, and Jennifer Siegal showed up. GREENER PASTURES Eco-prophet Paul Kephart of landscape design firm Rana Creek, which created the much-acclaimed green roof atop Renzo Piano’s California Academy of Sciences, has had a turbulent few years. First he left his wife for an employee, throwing the small company into chaos. Then we heard the plants on the roof were turning brown, and that Kephart himself had a brush with near death. Now, Eavesdrop is glad to report that things have stabilized with the arrival of a new Baby Kephart. Take heart: Dad is definitely not the first larger-than-life personage to also have a complicated personal life. AIN’T IT GRAND? We love when planners decide to let loose with gossip-worthy statements. Last month, Paul Novak, the land planning deputy for LA County Supervisor Mike Antonovich, spouted freely to the Los Angeles Business Journal about the city’s long-stalled Grand Avenue development: “The project should be abandoned.” And he elaborated: “We need to rethink what goes on that land and how the county and city can maximize their returns. But it’s not this deal. We should probably start from scratch and issue a new request for proposals.” Meanwhile, the Grand Avenue site looks exactly the same as it has since we started the California edition three years ago. And we thought we were the ones who played fast and loose with deadlines. Send gag orders and blank slates to Eavesdrop@archpaper.com