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    ArchitectureWeek Notes No. 552
    Dear ArchitectureWeek Readers,

    ArchitectureWeek No. 552 is now available on the Web, with these new design and building features, and more. This Notes edition is sponsored by Wiley:


    A Global History of Architecture on iPad

    The bestselling "A Global History of Architecture," Second Edition, by Francis D.K. Ching is now an exciting new interactive Inkling iPad edition.

    Learn more


    Originally built starting in 1868, opened in glory then slowly faded into disrepair and near-demolition, the grand hotel at St. Pancras Station in London is now restored and reopened as the St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel. Photo: Hufton + Crow

    St. Pancras Resurrection
    by Jo Baker

    Sir Gilbert Scott's confection of a masterpiece, which has not made its way lightly through the years, rises none the less regally from the front of London's historic St. Pancras railway station.

    When built in the late 1800s as the Midland Grand Hotel, the building was a hallmark of high Victorian sumptuousness, designed to prove that the gothic style could suit commercial architecture. Yet as a large hotel with just a handful bathrooms on the cusp of the en-suite revolution, it was doomed to fall quickly out of fashion.

    The hotel closed in the 1930s, revived only to serve as offices for British Rail. In the 1960s, fans of the hotel and train station, which was by then also underused, fought hard to keep the complex from being demolished, and also succeeded in hoisting its National Heritage listing from Grade III to a better-protected Grade I. But after being abandoned by British Rail in 1985, the hotel, then known as the St. Pancras Chambers, fell into disrepair.

    The two buildings' fates changed a decade later with the selection of St. Pancras as the terminus for Eurostar, the new high-speed passenger rail service to France.

    The Manhattan Loft Corporation of London was part of the winning consortium for the hotel's revival as a railway hotel, and later took over the role of developer of the entire project, with Marriott as operator and the British firm RHWL Architects leading the design. And after the obligatory green light was given by English Heritage - the government-sponsored body that manages England's historic built environment - the St. Pancras Chambers was given a new lease on life.

    The objective of the whole project team was to resuscitate the gothic beauty of the seven-story building while producing a profitable, functional hotel in line with modern design and technology standards. Success has followed in most of these respects.

    The 245-room St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel London was thrown open in May 2011 to high acclaim, having cost the Manhattan Loft Corporation over £200 million - more than £50 million over budget. The refurbishment saga had taken eight years, pitted the demands of English Heritage against those of UK legislation on health and safety and the hospitality market, and involved dozens of different contractors and specialists.

    Strategic Restructuring

    Much of the reconfiguration needed to make the hotel work, both functionally and financially, skirted the building's historical core.

    The architects and developer worked with conservation architect Richard Griffiths Architects, under the strict eye of English Heritage, to build a new 120,000-square-foot (11,000-square-meter) wing of modern, executive-style box rooms adjacent to the train shed (which underwent its own separate restoration and expansion).   >>>


    The Richard-Berg House in Madison, Wisconsin, is a Platinum-certified LEED for Homes project that was designed by Richard Wittschiebe Hand using BIM modeling software. Photo: Courtesy Carol Richard/ Richard Wittschiebe Hand

    Sustainable by BIM: Two Case Studies
    by Carol Richard and James Anwyl

    This pair of case studies explores the use of building information modeling (BIM) in small-scale sustainable design projects. — Editor

    Ross Street House
    by Carol Richard

    Location: Madison, Wisconsin
    Design firm: Richard Wittschiebe Hand
    Client: Carol Richard and Fred Berg

    The goal of the owners was to design and build a modern, affordable, and sustainable single-family home that would last the couple throughout their retirement years. The owners, an architect and her husband, an engineer, took an integrated design approach to the project. This allowed them to work on the project together, which was another key project goal.

    The Ross Street House achieved LEED for Homes Platinum-level certification — the first project to do so in the state of Wisconsin.

    The 50-foot- (15-meter-) wide, 130-foot- (40-meter-) deep city lot faces due south and falls off gradually to the rear. It is located on the near-west side of Madison in a modest neighborhood. The undeveloped, infill site was chosen because of its proximity to essential services, parks, and bike paths, and because it is only one mile (1.6 kilometers) from the University of Wisconsin.

    The concept of the design is that of a carefully controlled light box, and BIM (ArchiCAD) was extensively used in developing the home from its inception.

    Several sun studies informed the development of the brise-soleil on the southern elevation of the home, and guided the form of the building. The louvers are designed to allow the sun to penetrate deep into the house between October and February, while shading the windows from May to August.   >>>


    Prepping Your BIM Model for Construction Scheduling and Logistics - Screencast

    Watch this free screencast hosted by Autodesk® Technical Marketing Manager Anthony Governanti, and see how to modify your BIM model in Revit® format and modify it for the construction process. You'll learn how to:
    • Schedule with the Navisworks timeliner
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    • Maximize amounts of BIM data from the models received from the design team


    Chinese architect Wang Shu, recipient of the 2012 Pritzker Architecture Prize. Photo: Zhu Chenzhou

    Wang Shu Gallery
    by ArchitectureWeek

    The Pritzker Architecture Prize has usually been given to an internationally well-known architect. In contrast, with the announcement of the 2012 Pritzker Prize award to Wang Shu last week, many architectural observers confronted a Pritzker-winning oeuvre being seen for almost the first time.

    With significantly less critical review of Wang Shu's creations having occurred previous to his Pritzker Prize than usual, at least in English - and standing among the ranks of newcomers to Wang Shu - the editors of ArchitectureWeek will not move quickly in expressing interpretation and evaluation of his body of work.

    Not only is there the challenge of accurate interpretation through translation of technical and architectural theory terminology, and in robust fact-checking back to sources in China, but in addition Wang Shu has built in an impressively wide variety of building types and styles. A fair and lasting assessment of such a range of designs as we see from his office is not likely to be reached overnight.

    At the same time - overnight as it were - Wang Shu is now in fact an important international architect.

    This gallery is offered, therefore, so that Wang Shu's work may speak for itself - as all architecture ultimately must.

    We hope you can join us in taking a long and thoughtful look.   >>>

    It's fast, easy, private, and secure.

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    Vectorworks Architect 2012
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    A significant Apple iPad announcement is expected on March 7, 2012

    3dboxx 3970 Xtreme - Cadalyst, 2012.0301

    Role of BIM in Infrastructure Seismic Retrofits - Structure, 2012.0301

    A Review of the Lytro Camera - New York Times, 2012.0229

    Sustainable by BIM: Two Case Studies - ArchitectureWeek, 2012.0229

    Trimble's Ruggedized Juno Takes GIS on a Field Trip - Cadalyst, 2012.0229

    New Product


    Product News - Green Roof for Steep Slopes

    American Hydrotech, Inc. offers the Garden Roof® Assembly for extensive and intensive green roofs. An extensive green roof can be installed on flat or steeply sloped roofs, with pitches up to 12:12 (45 degrees), using special engineering to accommodate shear forces and ensure soil retention. Pitches greater than 3:12 require the GardNet® soil confinement system (pictured), made of polyethylene strips connected by offset ultrasonic-welded seams. Its ability to conform to irregular surfaces also makes it well-suited for undulating and complex roofs.

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    Contents, RSS, and Surface of the Week

    Six-panel mahogany door with raised panels; side lights (DW-016)


    Architecture Quiz this week's question...

    Although "caryatid" sounds like a species of shellfish, it is a special form of column used to support the corners of some ancient buildings, such as the Erechtheum. How would you describe these columns? By the way, where is the Erechtheum?

    Architecture Answer for last week's quiz question...

    In the metric system, the values of live and dead loads on floors, and wind loads on walls, are expressed in what units?



    Classic Home 040 — Cary House, by Joseph Esherick

    " a fairly simple box, elaborated by the eyelashes and eyebrows of overhangs which soften the transition from the simple box to the bright light of the outside. There, I think, for the first time in several centuries, the windows came clearly to be seen not just as walls of glass as in earlier houses, nor as holes in solid walls, as in still earlier ones, but rather variously as chances to pick up light along a wall or floor or to look at a view through an opening shaded by trellises, each window responding to the special aspects of what lay beyond or the quality of entering light."


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        A Housing Vision, by Pierre d'Avoine

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