A previous client messaged me about a housing project that he had come across on the internet called the Ordos 100. A project with ambitious aims that had failed to get built – and no one seemed to know what had become of it. Not knowing anything about the project, I set about finding out what happened to Ordos 100 – albeit from behind my desk.
Building one’s own home is a dream that most of us have. The ability to have our home designed and built from the ground up around our vision, needs and aspirations is alluring. However, living in a city like London where land values are high due to high demand, how do people find land to build on in London for their self-build homes? Read more
This month, I made a very conscious effort to fill my diary with architecturally related events. It was sparked by last month’s Open House London where I had the chance to visit three residential projects in the borough of Southwark. The three projects were the new housing development on Royal Road by Panter Hudspith Architects, The Courtyard House on Asylum Road by Mos Architects and 15 and a half Consort Road, which has gained notoriety through its appearance on Grand Designs.
I was lucky enough to visit Marseille during the last week, which gave me the opportunity to take a second tour around one of the iconic buildings of the twentieth century, La Cité Radieuse (the radiant city). During my first visit in 2008, I had stayed in the hotel located within the building, which had been sensitively renovated and included pieces of furniture designed by the architect, Le Corbusier.
Completed in 1952, La Cité Radieuse was the first of Le Corbusier’s Unité d’Habitation (collective housing). It soon became an emblem for post war brutalist housing blocks around the world. The many ingenious concepts woven into the design of the building resulted in bland brutalist architecture when applied elsewhere indiscriminately of place, culture and climate. Standing at the base of La Cité Radieuse confronted by its scale, materiality, diversification within an overall unity, one recognises that this a building which is anything but bland.