Page N1.1 . 18 February 2009                     
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                                                    . . . THIS WEEK


The Disability Empowerment Center of Arizona (DEC), designed by Baldinger Architectural Studio, was recently completed in Phoenix. Photo: Raul J. Garcia Extra Large Image

Seattle · 2009.0218
Seattle, Washington-based architecture firm Callison has promoted three senior staff members to principal: Matt Billerbeck; Michel Hebrant, AIA; and Zivko Penzar, AIA. Billerbeck has spent nearly 20 years planning and designing retail and mixed-use projects around the world. Hebrant focuses on the Middle East, working on many corporate campuses, mixed-use, high-tech, and office developments. Penzar has over 20 years of experience, and has led retail, mixed-use, and hospitality projects in China and elsewhere.

Boston · 2009.0217
Architecture and engineering firm CBI Consulting Inc. recently renovated 2,400 square feet (220 square meters) of its Boston, Massachusetts, headquarters to create eight additional work stations and a conference area. CBI staff members designed and managed the conversion project. The ground floor space, which now serves as the additional work area, was formerly used for storage. Light reflectors were used to direct additional light into the space.

New York · 2009.0211
New York City architecture and design firm Gerner Kronick + Valcarcel Architects, P.C. (GKV) has promoted Benita Welch, AIA, and Joseph Barbagallo, AIA, to principal. Welch has been with GKV since 1997, and Barbagallo since 1996.

Dubai · 2009.0211
Construction continues on Mirdif City Center in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The London, United Kingdom, office of RTKL designed the two-level, 230,000-square-meter (2.5 million-square-foot) retail space, which will host 430 retail outlets and eight anchor stores. LEED Gold certification is targeted. RTKL served as lead planner and design architect for the project, working with implementation architect Holfords of Dubai. Project opening is expected in late 2009.

Madrid · 2009.0210
Norman Foster and his London firm, Foster + Partners, have adapted a former printing house and garage in Madrid, Spain, for Art + Books. The interdisciplinary arts venue and headquarters for Ivorypress combines art galleries with a specialist bookshop.

The building's double frontage has been completely glazed, with direct access to the light-filled bookshop at ground level. The bookshop interior includes a warm natural Sevilla stone floor, wood shelving, and a slatted wood ceiling. A grand staircase provides a dramatic entrance to the main exhibition and event spaces below.

The large multipurpose space is designed for exhibitions, conferences, and events. Leading off the main space is a sequence of rooms for art display, presentation, or storage, designed to be highly flexible. The main exhibit space has an industrial aesthetic, with a hard-wearing resin floor punctuated by existing concrete columns, which were stripped to their original finish. Three existing light wells and a new skylight allow daylight to permeate the space.

Kansas City · 2009.0206
The D.A. Holmes II Senior Apartments in Kansas City, Missouri, are now complete. The Kansas City office of architecture and interior design firm Rosemann & Associates, P.C. designed the $4.9 million affordable senior housing project to complement its surroundings in the Santa Fe Place Historic District, using such elements as a cast-stone base and varied roof heights. The facility includes 42 residential units, plus common areas, office space, a craft room, fitness center, laundry facilities, media library, hair salon, and home theater.

Tianjin · 2009.0206
De Architekten Cie, based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, has revealed its winning design for the Qixing district Urban Planning Museum of Tianjin, China. The building will be composed of three distinct programs: urban planning museum and offices, New Year's painting gallery and studios, and a conference center, totaling 29,000 square meters (310,000 square feet) including parking. The relationship between voids and solids inspired strategies for accessibility, daylighting, and ventilation in the museum.

Partners in charge for de Architekten Cie are Branimir Medic and Pero Puljiz. The firm collaborated with the Amsterdam office of Arup on issues of sustainability and structure, and was assisted throughout the design process by their partners in Shanghai, UNIT Architects.

Nashville · 2009.0205
Nashville, Tennessee-based multidisciplinary firm Gresham, Smith and Partners has named Jane Ahrens, AIA, LEED AP, the firm's director of sustainability. In this newly created position, Ahrens will facilitate the development and oversee the implementation of firmwide sustainability initiatives. She has been with the firm for two years and previously served as a project architect in the aviation market sector.

Phoenix · 2009.0204
The Disability Empowerment Center of Arizona (DEC) (pictured above) was recently completed in Phoenix. The universally designed, accessible, transit-oriented, nonprofit disability services campus was designed by Baldinger Architectural Studio, Inc. of Tempe for client Arizona Bridge for Independent Living (ABIL). It also houses several other disability-focused organizations.

The DEC is an adaptive reuse of an existing 38,000-square-foot (3,500-square-meter) 1970s brick-and-stucco-clad office building, which was expanded to 64,000 square feet (5,900 square meters). The building is designed around a system of barrier-free interior and exterior circulation systems.Social interaction is facilitated between agencies through exterior gathering spaces, a cafe, common classrooms, training facilities, a 180-person conferencing center, and an 8,000-square-foot (740-square-meter) roof deck overlooking the surrounding buttes.

New floor-to-ceiling window walls flood the interiors with daylight.Solar shade screens on the east and west facades reduce solar gain and control glare.A central courtyard introduces natural light deep into the building. Utility consumption has been minimized through daylighting, low-flow plumbing fixtures, native landscaping, and a high-efficiency centralized mechanical plant. Low-VOC interior finishes were used.

The campus also includes a four-level ADA-accessible parking garage. Ground is scheduled to be broken for a 44,000-square-foot (4,100-square-meter) specialized sport and fitness center in March 2009.

Wake Forest · 2009.0202
Gail A. Lindsey, FAIA, LEED AP, of Wake Forest, North Carolina a visionary leader in sustainable design died on February 2, 2009, at age 54 of complications from liver cancer. Lindsey was founder and president of a green design firm, Design Harmony, and an internationally known consultant, charrette facilitator, and speaker who had given over 200 workshops and presentations.

Lindsey was closely involved with several green building rating systems from their earliest inceptions, including the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED rating system, the North Carolina Triangle J High Performance Guidelines, the U.S. Army's SPiRiT rating system, and the International Green Building Challenge Assessment Tool. She chaired the American Institute of Architects Committee on the Environment (AIA/COTE) during the launch of the Top Ten Green Projects award program, and had also chaired the North Carolina Green Building Council.

She held a bachelor of arts in architecture with honors from Georgia Institute of Technology, with additional courses from Duke University, and a masters of architecture from Columbia University.

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