Sunday, December 09, 2007

Zambian Architecture

The Zambian Architecture website writes about traditonal design types as well construction methods in Vernaluar Zambian Architecture.The use of sutainable building materials in vernaular Zambian Architecture is very prominent and I beleive could influence some of the western building concept being adopted in the continent.

The Victoria Falls Safari Lodge is a very good example of a build that had adopted vernacular architecture and adapted it in a mordern building as mentioned in the Zambian Architecture website.

Photos courtesy of the Zambian Architecture website and Victoria Fall Safari Lodge

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Henry Liu's Green Fly-Ash Bricks

The National Science Foundation website says "...Researchers have found that bricks made from fly ash--fine ash particles captured as waste by coal-fired power plants--may be even safer than predicted. Instead of leaching minute amounts of mercury as some researchers had predicted,the bricks apparently do the reverse, pulling minute amounts of the toxic metal out of ambient air.

Each year, roughly 25 million tons of fly ash from coal-fired power plants are recycled, generally as additives in building materials such as concrete, but 45 million tons go to waste. Fly ash bricks both find a use for some of that waste and counter the environmental impact from the manufacture of standard bricks.

"Manufacturing clay brick requires kilns fired to high temperatures," said Henry Liu, a longtime National Science Foundation(NSF) awardee and the president of Freight Pipeline Company (FPC), which developed the bricks. "That wastes energy, pollutes air and generates greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming. In contrast, fly ash bricks are manufactured at room temperature. They conserve energy, cost less to manufacture,and don't contribute to air pollution or global warming."

Once colored and shaped, the FPC bricks are similar to their clay counterparts, both in appearance and in meeting or exceeding construction-material standards.

Supported by NSF's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, Liu has been working since 2004 to develop the bricks. The first phase of support enabled him to make fly ash bricks more durable by engineering them to resist freezing and thawing
due to weather. Liu is now working from a second-phase SBIR award to test the brick material's safety and prepare it for market.

"Green manufacturing is a focus for the nation," said Tom Allnutt of NSF's SBIR program, who oversaw Liu's award. "Liu's innovative use of fly ash to manufacture high quality building materials will potentially decrease some of the negative environmental impact of coal-fired power generation while meeting increasing demands for greener building materials."

While researchers need to study the bricks further to determine how the mercury adsorption occurs and how tightly the metal is trapped, the new findings suggest the bricks will not have a negative impact on indoor air quality.

On average, air contains low amounts of mercury that can range from less than 1 nanogram per cubic meter (ng/m3) to tens of ng/m3--a small fraction of the Environmental Protection Agency limit for continuous exposure.

Inside a confined experimental chamber, the bricks did not raise the mercury levels in the surrounding air (originally more than one nanogram), and instead appeared to lower the concentration down to roughly half a nanogram.

Engineers from FPC of Columbia, Mo., developed the bricks with NSF support and reported their findings on mercury leaching at the May 7-10, 2007, World of Coal Ash Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Henry Liu has received a number of NSF awards since 1980 and founded FPC after retiring as professor of civil engineering and director of Capsule Pipeline Research Center, a state/industry university cooperative research center established by NSF at
University of Missouri-Columbia in 1991 to research and develop capsule pipeline technology..."

Photos courtesy of National Science Foundation

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Highly Efficient Green Buildings

Quirks and Quarks says "...Most people agree that a major problem facing our planet today is the rising level of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere. So environmentalism has now become mainstream, with recycling, fuel efficiency, and reduced use of plastic all part of our daily lives. But one area that still needs dramatic improvement is the construction and design of the buildings we live and work in. It's estimated that forty percent of our greenhouse gas emissions in North America come from our homes and offices. So researchers and builders are looking for ways to 'green up' our homes.

In existing buildings, this isn't easy. Dr. Danny Harvey, a geography professor at the University of Toronto, lives in a typical Toronto home. And he's doing all he can to lower his home's impact. He's installed triple-glazed windows, a high-efficiency furnace, and a light coloured roof in order to improve his home's efficiency. He's sealed all the small cracks he can find, and installed extra insulation to prevent heat leaking. All together, he's reduced his impact by about 25

But the really large changes are going to come with new home construction. While many homes outside urban areas are getting larger and larger, Andy Thomson, a Toronto architect with Sustainable Design, is moving in the opposite direction. He's designing homes that are less than 300 square feet in size. Based on trailer homes, he's using the latest in materials and design to create family dwellings that produce their own electricity, and are so efficient, they can be completely heated and cooled using barbeque tanks of propane.

But not everyone's going to be willing to move into such a small domicile. Instead, it may take development of new materials to improve home construction. One of these is a wood product developed by Michael Sykes, the creator of the Enertia home.

He's discovered that the resin in pine wood crystallizes at room temperature, and is exploiting this in the creation of homes that don't require a furnace to heat. Instead, the wooden walls absorb heat from the sun during the day, and release it at night.A big change that needs to happen if we're going to create green communities, is to change the actual design of our living environments. Both the homes themselves, and the makeup of the communities we live in. Amanda Mitchell, from the University of British Columbia, is part of a team that works with developers to come up with environmentally friendly community designs..."

Photo courtesy of Quirks and Quarks

Friday, November 09, 2007


The ApproVideo website is "... a new Video wiki/blog site developed by the Engineering for Developing Communities Program (EDC) at the University of Colorado and PlanetMind.

This site provides a collection of already published short videos illustrating a wide range of sustainable and appropriate solutions for developing (and developed) communities worldwide. You will find innovative ideas, tools, cutting edge programs,case studies, and initiatives in the areas of education, health, energy, water, sanitation, etc..."

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Afritects of South Africa

Afritects was established in 1998 and has quickly established itself as one of the notable practices in Johannesburg – South Africa.

The firm has already left a trail of uniquely designed buildings in it wake ranging from commercial and hospitality to institutional typologies.

Afritects operates out of it own studio at 236 Afritects Place in Ferndale, Randburg.

Photos courtesy of Afritects

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Modern Green Architecture in Accra

In article by Shelley D. Hutchins featured in Architect Magazine "...California-based Stephen H. Kanner, FAIA, has expanded his practice to another West coast—the one in Africa. Accra, the capital of Ghana, has captured both his attention and his creative passion. “Ghana is on the coast and faces the same direction—southwest—as Los Angeles,” he says, so its conditions are not entirely alien to him. But Kanner's chief lure was best friend and longtime collaborator Joe Addo, who moved back to his birthplace four years ago.

On his first visit there, Kanner was so impressed by Addo's efforts to revitalize his hometown, he offered the full support of his firm and his own financial investment. “Joe is really involved in political issues that will better the quality of life through roads, water systems, and schools,” Kanner explains. Together they've formed a development group called Concept Ghana, with a focus on improving low-income housing, aiding in neighborhood and city planning, and designing upscale housing to help lure wealthy Ghanaians back home.

The Augustino Neto Condominiums, slated for completion in 2008, are among the for-profit projects. The 1,500-square-foot units will sell for about U.S. $300,000. All 25 condos have two bedrooms, two and a half baths, and two balconies opposite each other for unimpeded cross-ventilation. The ¾-acre site is on the airport road, which also houses the city's embassy row. “The town grew around the airport, and the wealthiest district happens to be right below the flight path,” Kanner says. But the building's debut of Concept Ghana's soon-to-be-patented material, PozzoGhana, will help insulate against jet-engine noise. The green building product, which combines local sedimentous soils, waste palm kernels, and Portland cement, will form the exposed structure of the condo building.

The condos will showcase other sustainable materials easy to come by in Ghana: bamboo for the poolside cabana and balcony railing; adobe plasters for the walls; and recycled oil drums as large-format shingle siding. Responsibly harvested native woods in wide planks will lend clean, contemporary lines to wall panels. “The building's frame is our concrete product,” Kanner says, “then we mixed in ancient local building materials in a modern way.”..."

Photos courtesy of Architect Magazine

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Beckmann-N’Thépé Architects

Françoise N’Thépé and Aldric Beckmann, founders of Paris-based firm Beckmann-N’Thépé
Sam Lubell's article in Archrecod says"...It’s always difficult to be a young architect.."

"...the challenges are especially acute in France, due to a strongly established hierarchy and a conservative outlook on experimentation, especially toward those without much experience. “People don’t want their money to be spent by ‘amateurs,’ ” says N’Thépé. The situation is even more difficult for her, since she is a woman and a minority (she was born in Cameroon). “Yes, I sometimes feel myself as an exception,” she says..."

"...N’Thépé studied at the Ecole Spéciale d’Architecture in Paris (she originally wanted to be an interior designer, but amazingly she signed up at the wrong school!), where she studied with French architects Odile Decq, Paul Virilio, and Frédéric Borel. She worked for French/German firm LIN. Beckmann, born in Paris, studied at the Ecole d’Architecture Paris la Seine, and worked for architects François Seigneur,Will Alsop, and Jean Nouvel. The two met at Seigneur’s office, where N’Thépé was freelancing.

Their first big break came when they won the Nouveaux Albums des Jeunes Architectes Award, a major prize organized by the French Ministry of Culture, in 2001. The requests and contacts that came after this allowed them to formally start their new firm the following year.

The firm has a strong interest in research and investigating new materials and new processes, combined with sensitive, intuitive design. Their buildings are unique, sculptural (N’Thépé says the firm has a “plastician” way of drawing projects), and even sexy, but they all feel strongly rooted in their locations. “Our first approach to architecture has always been about how cities function,” says N’Thépé. “We’re very aware of how our ‘sculptures’ emerge, about the context and the stories we want to create.”

With its Versailles project, completed in 2005, the firm made small changes throughout the Classical-style school, like spiral-shaped neon lighting, new skylights, and bright new colors. It also fit a bold translucent Teflon membrane on top of the building’s courtyard, and created a futuristic new classroom with a translucent drop ceiling that projects fluorescent lighting patterns and colors. Their public housing project, finished this year in a tight development zone called Paris Rive Gauche, maximizes natural light through a large “fault” cut into its center.

The Vincennes zoo project will use artificial materials like steel, Teflon, glass, and plaster to create naturally inspired forms, such as massive rocks and a bubbly, translucent greenhouse dome. The firm, which has also stayed busy participating in exhibitions in Paris, Bordeaux, and Brazil, is now looking to branch out in both architecture and urbanism, “especially abroad,” says N’Thépé. So, if all goes according to plan, there will be a whole new set of hierarchies and expectations to defy..."

Photos are courtesy of Beckmann-N’Thépé website

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Uche Isichei Architects

According to their website "...Uche Isichei Architects are a small design oriented architectural practice offering creative solutions to our clients. We are committed to creating fantastic living and working spaces that enhance the lives of our clients. Our projects are designed responsibly using ecologicaly sustainable materials and “green” design strategies like passive solar heating. We design a wide range of projects and are happy to talk to you to find out what we can add to your project...".

Photos courtesy of Uche Isichei Architects.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Stefan+Antoni+Olmesdahl+Truen Architects

Stefan+Antoni+Olmesdahl+Truen are a team of architects whose style consists of a fusion of vernacular and contemporary design with a tint of minimalist architecture.

HABITAT Magazine says "..The Architectural and design team responsible for this exemplary residence were appointed by their client to create a double dwelling development in Greenpoint..."

Photos courtesy of Stefan+Antoni+Olmesdahl+Truen website.

Constructing the future

According to Monocle magazine "...The Gantenbein Winery, in Fläsch, Switzerland has been the prototype for an entirely new approach to bricklaying: using modified industrial robots. Traditionally, the promise of industrial robots has been that they would replace the human workforce.

But these projects, led by the Architecture and Digital Fabrication laboratory at ETH Zürich, demonstrate a different result: architects are free to create designs and patterns of a precision that simply could not be achieved by hand.

Monocle spoke to Professors Fabio Gramazio and Matthias Kohler, who have been collaborating on the project with partners Keller AG and Bearth & Deplazes, about what it means for both building and buildings, and the industry's initial reaction to a prospective army of robot builders..."

Photo courtesy of City of Sound

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Design Africa

Their Website says "...Ultimately, Design Africa is a portal, your portal, to designers with uncommon vision, to potential partners, to beautiful products and striking design statements, and to statements of another kind:

Stories of the designers, artisans and communities involved in the creation process, stories of the materials used and the meaning behind the items produced, and of course, stories of dreams turning into business plans and reaching around the world from the original design source, Africa.

Design Africa’s mission is twofold: to help today’s distinctive African design emerge, and to accelerate the economic development of the communities and countries involved through the positive impact of exports. That started with our presence at SIDIM 2006. Building on its success, we are pleased to present 19 companies from five countries that span the continent..."

Image Courtesy of Design Africa

Monday, July 16, 2007

Traditional African Buildings are Energy Efficient

Anyone that has been in a Traditional African buildings would notice that they are always cooler inside even when it is very hot outside.

Well it seems that a study by the British Architectural firm - Robert Adam Architects has shown that Traditionally constructed homes are generally more energy efficient than those with lots of glass.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Eco Skyscrapers

We can build skyscrapers that not only have low- carbon footprints but also are sustainable. The Skyscraper Museum and The New York Academy of sciences have come together to highlight the emergence of state-of-the-art sustainable skyscraper design.

"...Skyscrapers enable urban density and can produce energy efficiency and healthier environments.Featuring leading architects and engineers who have pioneered a range of strategies, from high-performance structures to low tech, bio-climatic towers, MIXED GREEENS examines new directions in the future of tall buildings around the world..."

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Zero-Carbon, Zero-Waste Abu Dhabi's New Green City of Masdar

Vikki Miller of Building writes about the "Walled City of Masdar" in Abu Dhabi which will be one the world's first zero-carbon and zero-waste cites in the world after Dongtan and Huangbaiyu in China.
"...The Masdar development in Abu Dhabi is a 6 km sq, car-free “walled-city” scheme. The development is being driven by Abu Dhabi’s Future Energy Company and will include a new HQ for the company as well as a new university.

Norman Foster said: “The environmental ambitions of the Masdar Initiative – zero carbon and waste free – are a world first. They have provided us with a challenging design brief that promises to question conventional urban wisdom at a fundamental level. Masdar promises to set new benchmarks for the sustainable city of the future.”

Above is the worlds Solar land area.

Unveiled today at the Cityscape conference in Abu Dhabi, Foster + Partners said Masdar would be a dense, walled development constructed in two stages. The first phase would see the construction of a large photovoltaic power plant, which would later become the site for the second phase.

The surrounding land will contain wind, photovoltaic farms, research fields and plantations, so that the city will be entirely self-sustaining, the architect said.The development is set to open in late 2009..."

Photos courtesy of Building and Wikipedia

Sunday, May 06, 2007


According to their website "...ah'bé integrates planning and design, approaching projects with a contextual perspective, and investigates site, program, and project intent with rigor, intuition, and rationality. We address every project holistically, regardless of size, utilizing the diverse resources of our staff, emphasizing the fundamental significance of the design of a place and the relationship of the place to its larger environment. We see landscape as a continuum of relationships, one that is dynamic and sensitive, and that reflects the interconnectedness of human and natural systems..."

Photos courtesy of ah'bé

Friday, April 20, 2007

Solar Facelift

Metaefficient writes about "...The facade of this Manchester skyscraper (owned by CIS, an insurance company) was original covered with
small mosaic tiles, but after only six months, they began to detach and fall. A solution was needed, and a company called solarcentury came up with a clever idea replacing the failing tiles with solar cells.

Not only do the solar cells provide a weatherproof barrier, they also generate about 390kW of power for the building. In total, 7,244 Sharp 80W modules are used to cover the entire service tower (but apparently only 4898 of these modules are "live" the others are "dummy modules" — strange). The building also has 24 wind turbines on the roof, which provide 10% of the total power used by the building..."

Photos courtesy of Metaefficient

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Gapp Architects

The recently opened Tinapa business resort was designed by this interesting Architectural firm based in South Africa.

According to their website"...GAPP Architects and Urban Designers has evolved to become one of South Africa´s foremost professional firms, with an award-winning portfolio of work in high profile and prestigious projects such as: The Apartheid Museum, The ArabellaSheraton Grand Hotel, The Western Cape Hotel and Spa, The Park Hyatt, Maropeng at The Cradle of Humankind, Freedom Park, The V&A Waterfront and Nelson Mandela Square to name just a few.

GAPP´s philosophy which encompasses a culture of mutual respect and open communication is apparent when visiting any of the offices in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban and the network of satellite offices in Port Elizabeth, Nairobi, Dar-es-Salaam, Calabar and Mauritius.

The GAPP team is defined by some of the most respected accomplished individuals across a complementary range of skills in the fields of Architecture, Urban Design, Urban Development Strategies, Services Design, Information Technology and Town Planning, together sharing space and ideas in a stimulating and well-organised work environment.

These aspects combine to provide a sound basis for GAPP to maintain the highest professional standards from design excellence to client collaboration and in so doing, to create a built environment which stands as a legacy now and will for generations hereafter..."

Photos Courtesy of and Hps, Tinapa

birsel + seck company

The birsel + seck Company was started by Ayse Birsel and Bibi Seck who are both product designers. "...Their award-winning designs span the office, home, bath, retail and automotive sectors..." which include the well know brands like Herman Miller, Hewlett Packard, Target, and Renault.

Their website says "...Bibi Seck was born in Paris and spent his formative years in London, Paris and Dakar. He received his Master’s degree in industrial design in 1990 from ESDI, Paris. Before moving to New York in 2003, Seck was lead designer at Renault for 12 years and has extensive experience in materials and manufacturing, and guiding large design teams through complex problems.

Seck led the interior design teams for several production vehicles, including the Scenic I, Twingo II, Trafic, and Scenic II. Scenic I (1996) and Trafic (2002) won Car of the Year awards from the European trade press. While at Renault, Seck designed the F1 Micrograph watch for Tag Heuer, winning the prestigious 2002 Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève.

Seck has taught at Strate Collége School of Design and Management in Paris, at Université Technologique de Compiegne, and most recently at Pratt Institute...."

"...Ayse Birsel grew up in Izmir, Turkey. In 1989 she received a Fulbright Scholarship to complete her Master’s Degree at Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY.

Her 1993 design of the Zoë Washlet spearheaded Japanese manufacturer TOTO’s entry into the US market and has unofficially been coined the world’s most comfortable toilet seat. In 1996 she founded Olive 1:1. Birsel received a gold Industrial Design Excellence IDSA award for the Resolve system, her reinterpretation of the office cubicle for Herman Miller. In 2002, her collaboration with Bibi Seck on the design of a concept automobile interior for Renault led to the creation of their studio Birsel + Seck.

Recipient of the 2001 Young Designer Award from the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Birsel was a finalist at the Cooper Hewitt National Design Awards in 2002. She was named a Fellow at the International Design Conference at Aspen, and has taught at Pratt Institute. Her work is in the permanent
collections of Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum and the Museum of Modern Art..."

Photos courtesy of Birsel + Seck

Sunday, April 08, 2007

MTS Property

Timbuktuchronicles writes about the MTS property "..An integrated Real Estate company that offers:

-Property Development & Sales.
-Estates Management.
-Rental Services.
-Maintenance Services.

in Nigeria's growing real estate industry.

The Becon

I attended the lecture by Marks Barfield Architects, The Quietrevolution, and Price & Myers at the building centre about the Beacon which is part of the Sustainable London, Power in the City lecture.

It was an impressive presentation and the duo Julia Barfield, joint Managing Director of Marks Barfield Architects, and Robert Webb, CEO of Quietrevolution were bombarded with a lot of interesting questions by the full house audience, which I think were answered satisfactorily.

The quietrevolution website says "...The Beacon is a 40 metre high Y-shaped structure, and is designed to be ‘planted’ along major roads and public spaces, reaching up to the stronger breezes above London’s buildings. Each Beacon supports five vertical 'triple-helix’ wind turbines called quietrevolution, each five metres high and three metres diameter designed to achieve ultra-quiet operation and more efficient utilisation of urban winds.

‘Most wind turbines are being planned in remote locations without any existing infrastructure. This isn’t efficient as 30 percent to 50 percent of energy gets lost
through transmission. We believe cities like London should take much greater responsibility for their own energy generation. London has a unique opportunity to make a difference in time for the Olympics’ said David Marks and Julia Barfield, co-designers of the Beacon.

Their partner in the project, Robert Webb, CEO of XCO2 and co-designer of The Beacon adds; ‘Within fifty years we will be living in a world which is 90 percent powered by renewable energy", with no sacrifice to quality of life. The Beacon is a showcase and a celebration of this revolution and is designed to bring the debate on wind generation directly into the cities..."

Link to Sustainable London PDF presentation.

Photo courtesy of Quietrevolution

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Prism Designs

Prism Designs Africa is an indigenous architectural design firm that specialises mainly in residential, institutional and commercial building in Kenya and Southern Sudan.

According to their website " a team of Registered Architects who hold Bachelor of Architecture Degrees from University of Nairobi and have been working together on construction projects in Africa for many years.

Our scope of work ranges from large commercial projects to intimate and personalised designs for private residences and no project is too large or too small to handle.

It is our firm belief that the success of a building, whether aesthetically, functionally or financially, is established through the design process.

It is in this process of lateral thinking that the talents, skills and energy of the practice is concentrated..."

Using state of the art computer aided design systems, we are committed to creating and identifying viable projects involving its project management, architecture, interior design, civil engineering, projects funding and procurement skills. Our services include:

● Development Consultancy
● Architectural and Quantity Surveying
● Civil and Structural Engineering
● Project Management
● Facilities Management
● Project Finance Structuring
● Interior Design & Space Planning

Photo courtesy of Prism Designs Africa

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Woodless Construction

Voiceofthedesert website features an article by Keith Smith that has shows the intricate construction steps of a Woodless mud building in Gorom-Gorom in Burkina Faso with the help of a photo blog.

It writes that "...Woodless construction is an approach to building in the sahel that uses traditional building techniques to build houses entirely out of mud, including the roof. Such houses save on scarce wood, encourage local industry by using local skills and materials, and provide good internal comfort, staying warm in cold season, and cool in hot season..."

Photo courtesy of Keith Smith's photo blog on Flickr

Singapore's floating towers

Worldarchitecturenews writes about a new design of a residential tower proposed for development in Singapore.According to the World Architecture news website "...the Far East Organization, Singapore’s largest private development company, has commissioned the Office for Metropolitan Architecture for OMA’s first architectural project in Singapore – a 36-storey residential high-rise.

The 153 meter tall tower will be located at the intersection of Scotts Road and Cairnhill Road, in close proximity to Orchard Road, Singapore’s famous shopping and lifestyle street. With 20,000m² of built floor area, the building will provide 68 high-end apartment units with panoramic views.

The design strategically maneuvers within the highly regulated building environment to maximize the full potential of the site: Four individual apartment towers are vertically offset from one another and suspended from a central core.

The skyline of floating towers directly relates to the surrounding building volumes and explores the most attractive views towards the city center and an extensive green zone to the north. The lifted apartment towers reduce the building’s footprint to a minimum; the liberated ground level provides communal leisure activities embedded in the tropical landscape..."

Photo courtesy of Worldarchitecturenews.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Shelter by Nature

The blog Liberia Stories reports about a sustainable building being built by Obadiah Gondolo out of stick and mud. The articale says "...He will make the walls out of mud, and the roof out of palm thatch. The whole process will take three weeks, and will cost him nothing since the kind landowner has let him have the small space in her yard for free.

Obadiah learned how to make a shelter out of nature's gifts when he enrolled in a free vocational training program offered by Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) in 2005. "JRS really did well for us," he says, referring to himself and the 30 others who were in his class. "It's the first institution that really taught me something useful."

Obadiah and his family (wife and two children) look forward to moving into their new place, which, though small, will also include a little shop. They are among the last Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) still living in a nearby IDP camp in Salala, Bong County. Obadiah is from the Salayea District of Lofa County, but has chosen not to return until he graduates from high school. Because of the long civil war, however, he is still an 8th grade student at St. John Elementary and Jr. High School. "Before I go back to Lofa I will also learn to be an automechanic," he adds..."

Photo courtesy of Liberia Stories

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Open Architecture Network

Open Architecture Network is an organisation started by Cameron Sinclair with the aim " generate design opportunities that will improve living standards for all" by providing an open-source platform through which ANYone can view, post, share, and adapt sustainable, humanitarian-based, scalable solutions.

The idea that designs and all associated documents can and should be shared within the decidedly proprietary architectural industry is truly innovative, and could very well aid in the reshaping of the entire architectural profession into a more socially-focused and responsible vocation.." according to theInhabitat blog

Most of the buildings are designed to be sustainable and affordable from the the construction to occupancy stage and are designed by the architects, designers, builders etc that are indegeious to where the building is proposed to be built.

Below is Cameron Sinclair's presentation at the TED conference

Photos are courtesy of Open Architecture Network

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Telios Development Limited

Their company is one of the top Property Development firms, that Design & Build commercial as well as private projects in Nigeria. Their attention to detail and high quality finishes coupled with an excellent team of Managers and designers has won them a lot of clientele in Abuja, Port Harcourt and Lagos.

According to their website "...The Telios Development Limited the foremost property development company in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, is a full-service real estate investment and development company that offers a comprehensive selection of real estate development and investment solutions which will facilitate, cultivate, and enhance your ideas and dreams.

With operations throughout Nigeria, we service a wide range of individual and corporate clients, satisfying them with the consistent delivery of timely, cost effective, and quality projects.

Our success has been demonstrated not only by outstanding projects we have completed, but also by a high percentage of clients that continually return to us for their construction and property..."

The company was pioneered by a group of talented professionals namely Uchenna Ekwueme (President and CEO), Gbenga Obaro, Osondu Anya,Sam Udensi, Debo Talabi, Wale Shoneye, Michael Adesanmi all of which are directors.

Photos courtesy of Telios Development

Friday, March 02, 2007

Massimiliano Fuksas Architects wins design competition of The African Inistitue of Science and Technology ,Abuja

The RIBA website writes about how "...Massimiliano Fuksas Architects has won the international design competition to design the first campus for The African Institute of Science and Techology (AIST) to be situated in Abuja, Nigeria. The budget for the campus is envisaged to be in the order of USD360 million, although design and construction will be phased over a number of years.

will ultimately comprise several science and technology higher education campuses and smaller affiliated centres of excellence located throughout Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The AIST concept has been developed, nurtured and promoted by the Nelson Mandela Institution for Knowledge Building and the Advancement of Science and Technology in Sub-Saharan Africa (NMI). NMI and AIST is supported by the World Bank, African Development Bank, International Finance Corporation, and other world class financial and academic institutions.

Massimiliano Fuksas Architects beat off strong competition from a prestigious field of international practices. The other five teams to participate in the design phase of the project and present their schemes to the assessment panel were Allies and Morrison Architects(UK); Office for Metropolitan Architecture (Netherlands); Rafael Vinoly Architects PC (USA); Saucier + Perrotte Architects (Canada); and SeARCH b.v.

(Netherlands). The panel was impressed by the high level of architectural design shown in all submitted work and the imaginative variation of attitudes underlying masterplanning concepts..."

Pictures Courtesy of RIBA organisation