Text description provided by the architects. MacEwan University’s new urban center for arts and culture, Allard Hall, creates an elegant entrance landmark to its City Centre Campus in Edmonton, AB. The building’s focal point is its central multi-story, double atria crossed by dramatic angled pedestrian bridges linking each of its five-floor from the ground up to the top floor where natural light pours in via clerestoreys.
A balcony at each stairway creates a ‘nest’ at circulation intersections, offering a zone (perch) for pause and informal learning in contrast to the building’s social and collaborative learning hubs. The building’s design emphasizes Allard Hall’s identity as a hub for converging ideas and social interaction by showcasing a vibrant spectrum of student, staff, and visitor activities.
Offering a perfect combination of cutting-edge academic and cultural functions, Allard Hall’s array of performance and educational spaces includes; studios, classrooms, educational and office spaces; a 450-seat proscenium theatre, a 200-seat recital hall, a 100-seat black-box theatre; galleries, and a range of high-tech computer labs, visual arts, digital and sound studios.
The building’s captivating exterior presents a modern, sleek curtain wall façade featuring wavy forms to subtly reference a stage curtain, an apt metaphor for the dynamics and function of the building. Latest energy modeling techniques optimized the composition of the façade and the energy efficiency of mechanical systems which is crucial for Edmonton’s cold winters and will aid its LEED Silver target.
Allard Hall is a complex place of interaction and collaboration that encourages exploration, creativity, and learning. With its galleries and multiple theatres, it also functions as a premier public performance and event venue in the heart of Edmonton’s downtown.
That’s the goal, at least. Mecanoo has released designs for a large-scale development in Utrecht inspired by “blue zone” regions – areas where residents tend live atypically long and healthy lives. Currently there are only five recognized blue zones worldwide: Sardinia, Nicoya, Loma Linda, Okinawa, and Ikaria.
Investigation into these zones revealed nine shared characteristics which Mecanoo have essentialized to four urban design concepts that define the Blue District development: community, mobility, healthy diet, and meaningfulness & relaxation.
The masterplan transforms a former marshalling yard of the Dutch Railways into a new residential neighborhood. The design includes plans for 2,600 homes, a park, school, supermarket and other mixed-use facilities.
The “blue zone” concepts are concentrated in the transformation of the existing CAB building, located at the northwestern edge of the development and directly south of the Utrecht-Zuilen station. Within the building, a large food hall will form an interior street offering healthy eating options and connecting residents to the Cartesiuspark at the center.
A nine-storey apartment complex will be added to the top of the building, making it one of the largest buildings in the area and emphasizing it as a landmark. Undulating balconies set the new addition apart from the existing rectilinear structure and creates a distinct architectural language for the neighborhood.
Cycling and pedestrian access are central to the 13 hectare masterplan, with all urban amenities located within close range to residential areas. The neighborhood will encourage sustainability, both in terms of green technology and in shared resources.
The Cartesiusdriehoek Blue District will offer a variety of housing typologies, with nearly a quarter of all housing intended for rental social housing. Construction is expected to start in 2020.
OMA has released updated images of their Feyenoord City masterplan after reaching initial city approval in 2016. Developed for the Feyenoord football club in Rotterdam, the project comprises a mixed-use district and a new 63,000 seat stadium along the River Maas.
The plan is intended to kickstart future business development in the area, connecting the stadium to the surrounding area along a wide pedestrian avenue known as “The Strip.” Images show that this concourse connects to a wide plaza surrounding the stadium, from which visitors will be able to look over the river towards the center of the city.
“On the concourse you will have a view over the Maas and the skyline of Rotterdam,” explained David Gianotten, partner in charge of the project, to Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad. “From this point you can directly reach the entrance to the three rings of the stadium and get a glimpse of the field. The stadium is robustly modeled and exudes the architectural character of Rotterdam.”
The masterplan will add approximately 180,000 square meters (1,938,000 square feet) of housing, 64,000 square meters (689,000 square feet) of retail/commercial, and 83,000 square meters (893,000 square feet) of public program to the area. Included in this is the conversion of the existing stadium, known as De Kuip, into apartments, an athletic center, and public square.
Notable in the design of the new stadium is a dense steel roof structure, which extends over the entirety of the stands to protect fans against the unpredictable Dutch weather.
The stadium and masterplan are expected to reach completion in 2023.
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Every four years, millions of soccer fans tune in to watch the best national teams battle it out at the World Cup—all for a chance to call themselves the best soccer team in the world. The FIFA World Cup, much like the Olympic games, encourages a great deal of development in the host country, with the addition of stadiums, infrastructure, and other programs needed to support the mass of fans who will head to cheer on their country. This year, Russia will be hosting the event and will be spending an estimated 10 billion dollars in both building new arenas, and refurbishing their existing facilities. The 2018 tournament will host 65 matches across 11 cities in 12 of the most modern stadiums in the world. We’ve compiled a list that show these impressive stadiums and arenas, and offer a glimpse as to how they will be used long after the winner of the 2018 World Cup is crowned.
Check out the twelve stadiums that will host matches in the 2018 World Cup below.
Luzhniki Stadium / Moscow
Luzhniki Stadium was constructed in only 450 days between 1955-1956, a reflection of the Soviet Union‘s strong ambitions after they returned from their first Olympics with 71 medals. With a capacity of just over 81,000, the stadium has hosted the 1980 Olympics, the 1999 UEFA Cup Final, and the Champions League final, among other international events. To prepare for the 2018 World Cup, the stands have been divided into two tiers and the athletic tracks have been removed. This arena is the site of the final World Cup match.
Spartak Stadium / Moscow
Located on the site of a former airfield, Spartak Stadium is the first permanent home field of 22-time Soviet/Russian champions Spartak Moscow. The exterior of the stadium features a series of connected diamonds that can be changed to reflect the colors of the teams playing that day.
Construction for the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium began in 2015, and draws on themes of wind and water in its circular form. It boasts an undulating and semi-transparent facade which lights up at night. FC Olimpiyets Nizhny Novgorod is the club team who will inherit the stadium after the conclusion of the World Cup.
Mordovia Arena / Saransk
Mordovia Arena is set to be one of the most colorful arenas in the 2018 World Cup with its orange, red, and white exterior. Although construction began in 2010, numerous delays, mainly due to a lack of funding, meant that the stadium was not finished until late 2017. With an initial capacity of 45,000 for the World Cup, the upper tier will be removed and transformed into a walkable concourse once it becomes the home stadium of FC Mordovia Saransk of the Russian Premier League.
Kazan Arena / Kazan
Located 510 miles from Moscow, the Kazan Arena was completed in the summer of 2013 to serve as the host venue for the Summer Universidade, an international multi-sport event for university athletes. This arena also hosted a portion of the competitions at the 2015 World Aquatics Championships, for which the field was replaced by two large swimming pools. If this stadium looks familiar, it’s because it was spearheaded by Populous, who also designed the new Wembley and Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium.
Holding just under 45,000 fans, the Samara Arena’s space-like design is influenced by the region’s renowned aerospace sector. Once the World Cup is over, it will be renamed the “Cosmos Arena” and become the new home field of local Krylia Sovetov.
Russia‘s fourth-largest city, Ekaterinburg is on the geographical border of Europe and Asia, at the foot of the Ural Mountains. Nominated as a World Cup host city, Ekaterinburg was faced with the dilemma of having to produce a venue that houses a minimum of 35,000 fans, as per FIFA rules. To meet this requirement, temporary additional seating was designed to stretch beyond the outside of the stadium, behind both goals.
Saint Petersburg Stadium / Saint Petersburg
Known typically as the Krestovsky Stadium or Zenit Arena, this venue will be dubbed the Saint Petersburg Stadium when it hosts the World Cup matches. Construction began in 2007, but due to a number of delays including a total redesign to comply with FIFA requirements and investors pulling from the project, the stadium was completed in 2017, just in time for the Confederations Cup. Equipped with a sliding field and retractable roof, the stadium is one of the most technologically advanced in the world. After the World Cup, the stadium will be home to Zenit St. Petersburg, and will also host several matches in Euro 2020.
Loosely based on Herzog and de Meuron‘s Allianz Arena, the newly built Kaliningrad Stadium has overcome a number of obstacles in order to be completed in time for the World Cup. It was initially designed to hold 45,000 seats and feature a retractable roof, but the modest, roofless, 35,000 seat venue will now host four first-group matches in the 2018 World Cup.
Another stadium built just for the World Cup, this arena features a lattice exterior and a cabled roof, making it one of the most architecturally distinct venues. After the World Cup, Volgograd Arena will be reduced to a 35,000 seat capacity and become the new home of Rotor Volgograd.
Rostov Arena / Rostov-on-Don
The Rostov Arena is situated on the southern bank of the River Don, and is planned to be the first development of a new city center that will be constructed over the coming years. Groundbreaking for this World Cup stadium began in 2013, during which in-tact shells from World War II were found on the site. After the World Cup, FC Rostov, the 2014 Russian Cup winners, will call this arena their new home field.
Fisht Stadium / Sochi
Located on the Black Sea, Sochi is the longest city in Europe, with an urban area stretching around 140 kilometers from end to end. The stadium was built as the main venue for the 2014 Winter Olympics, which explains why the stadium’s form resembles snowy, sloping mountain peaks. The open ends of the stadium, which once allowed for views of the Krasnaya Polyana mountains and the Black sea, have been filled with temporary seating to accommodate the World Cup crowds.
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As the 2018 World Cup approaches, we architects can already look ahead to the next tournament. The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar offers the most exciting opportunity in stadium design for decades, with the competition relying on an almost entirely new footballing infrastructure. Several world-renowned designers have submitted proposals, and the following set of newly released time-lapse videos show the progression of each stadium, as we approach four years to the competition’s start. Emphasising the structural shells, the videos highlight a sometimes overlooked facet of stadium design. To materialize the effortless magic of the initial renders – like those produced by Foster + Partners and Zaha Hadid Architects – phenomenal levels of engineering and problem solving are required, and in the early stages of construction, this becomes the visual focal point. Read on to see the beauty of these structural marvels, but be warned – you may develop World Cup fever.