目前日期文章:200712 (2)

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With his design for the Tower Verre, Jean Nouvel proposes to take the strict respect of the zoning envelope to the point where its shape becomes the tower itself. Governed by its legal envelope and the steel framing needed to withstand the wind loads, this structure is as unique and singular as the parcel it stands on. From close up, its receding stealth geometry makes it surprisingly discrete and unobtrusive for its height. Seen from Central Park, the bridges and most locations on the river banks, its triangular silhouette stands out and is very recognizable in the Manhattan skyline, inscribing the MoMA unmistakably as one of New York’s most famous and successful cultural institutions. The façades of the tower are a structural glazing in standard glass dimensions and the bracing structure follows the simplest and most economical geometry. Living inside this building feels like inhabiting a power fully present and reassuring structure, similar to that of a large tree. The tower draws its shape from the desire for more daylight in the streets and the same daylight feeds its solar panels with energy. Its character is the structural expression of the wind bracing and the same wind moves its Aeolian turbines. The solar panels and wind turbines fill the narrow triangular top section, putting its unusually thin silhouette to a reasonable use. This tower is a monument to the rules of shadow and light, and to the forces of the wind.





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Ratoath College is the first significant public institution in the community and accommodates 850 second level pupils. The site is in a landscape of partially completed housing estates and has two points of access. The articulation of the form defines entrances, social areas, external spaces and responds to the presence of two clusters of mature trees on site – one cluster now contained within the south facing garden and the second fixing the south west corner of the building. The articulation is in both plan and section and produces a silhouette, that establishes an appropriate scale contrasting with the neighbouring landscape of two-storey houses. Indentations or cut-outs into the brick form are in exposed charcoal blockwork. Windows are timber. Although non-orthogonal in form, the building provides the standard Department of Education and Science room layouts and uses the circulation and socials space to resolve geometries. The central entrance leads into the GP area – the heart of the school and the focus of the circulation systems on both floors. The GP area is a south facing volume looking into the enclosed garden. There are significant volumes within the building where the overall form reads – the volumes are critical as counterpoints to the horizontal organisation and provide vertical and diagonal visual connections. Materials are used as found – exposed blockwork reinforced concrete piers and sofffits, rendered planes of colour, exposed steel balustrades and benches, precast concrete external seats, exposed pipework etc.. The brickwork is recessed in areas to give depth and filter light (to the PE hall and staircases). Internally colour is used deliberately – against a general background of stained blockwork colour is used for accent, contrast, orientation, and identification. Critical locations for colours are the liners to the glazed screens between classroom and corridor and the coloured rooflights. The building has been constructed within the normal Department of Education and Science costs limits for second level buildings. Floor area is 8,020 sqm, design commenced 2004, construction November 2005 and Practical Completion August 2007.





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