WAN launches three new Metroblogs

Tuesday 03 Jan 2012

Beijing, Sydney and Mumbai are focus of three city-based Metroblogs on WAN

Over the years, World Architecture News has brought its readers breaking news and innovative projects from around the globe in a variety of ways, from editorial features to podcasts, film productions to comment pieces. Before Christmas we launched the first of a new series of Metroblogs, headed by our highly respected US Correspondent, Sharon McHugh in New York, and today we are announcing the appointment of three additional passionate bloggers who will report on upcoming projects, under the radar business information and event news with local insights from their city-based locations through our Blog series.

Sheldon Bai will send news from Beijing, drawing on his considerable experience and connections in the local industry. Having worked for over fifteen years in the field of architectural design for firms such as GBBN Architects and Lian-an Architectural Company, Sheldon has amassed a keen eye for exquisite design and a deep-rooted interest in issues of sustainability - elements that will be further explored in his upcoming blog posts.

In his first entry for the Beijing Metroblog Sheldon unveils his own stunning photographs of the BIAD UFo-designed Phoenix International Media Center and offers a detailed commentary on progress at the construction site. He begins: “Recently, a giant steel and glass doughnut emerged in the north-east part of Beijing; it is the Phoenix International Media Center; a multipurpose project designed by Beijing-based practice BIAD UFo. The owner, Phoenix Satellite TV, is one of the biggest media companies in China. This ongoing project is due to complete in 2012… The undulating and fluid exterior is generated with a double layer of swirling steel structural system, which supports the glass curtain wall bringing ambient light into the interior as well as maintaining a visual connection with the adjacent Chaoyang Park.….more

In Sydney will be Eleonora Usseglio Prinsi, an enthusiastic architecture graduate from the Polytechnic University of Turin who will be updating her followers with design news from the cosmopolitan Australian city. Throughout her education Eleonora has travelled extensively, studying in Madrid for a year and spending three months in Chile for her honours thesis. During her time in Spain, she worked with the Madrid office of Misc Arquitectos on a range of projects.

Eleonora’s initial post for the Sydney Metroblog details the recent opening of Sneakerology, an award-winning shop fit-out that plays with light and form in innovative fashion. The front face of the retail outlet is comprised of a series of small boxes, each offset by half a unit on each level, creating an eye-catching façade that begs interest from passers-by. Architects Yoshishito Kashiwagi and Olivia Shih won an Interior Design Excellence Award in November 2011 for their inspired design.

Our Sydney-based blogger furthers: “In a shopping centre, such as the Sydney CBD’s Westfield, which contains almost any store and any brand that you could ever imagine, it is difficult to create something new that will stand out. Facet Studio rose to the challenge this past June when they designed Sneakerology and its brother Streetology. The striking impact of the project’s design is that it looks like an urban museum, where the only star is the Sneakers. The shop is a multibrand store where the focus on the product is carried to excess. Rather than mimicking the design of typical stores where products are tightly packed into a small area, Facet Studio chose a look of simplicity invoking the feeling of standing in a museum….more

Reporting from Mumbai will be EDAC and USGBC LEED Green Associate Pallavi Shrivastava, whose examinations into human ecology and sustainability in the built environment will play a central role in her Metroblog. Pallavi is already a dedicated blogger, uploading independent site ‘Design Prose’ with personal anecdotes and analyses of the urban realm on a regular basis.

Our Correspondent’s first article for the Mumbai Metroblog concerns the astonishing design of The Capital by James Law Architects, detailing the continuing construction progress as this arresting design rises from the ground. In this futuristic concept, a spherical volume housing LED panels is suspended in the heart of an otherwise conventional structure.

Pallavi explains: “It’s a James Law. James Law of Cybertecture. Architecture and construction industry in Mumbai is currently abuzz with the development of this newest addition. It is none other than the iconic architectural addition aptly called ‘The Capital’. It is centrally located in the Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC), a rapidly growing business district in Mumbai. This futuristic commercial building aims to house some of the most prestigious and prominent international corporations and banks. The building integrates two key components: revolutionary design and sustainability. The front facade of the building encloses an inset egg-shaped feature which will house LED panels which will not only play as a dynamic information display but also act as a functional shading device for the building’s front yard….more

Find links to all WAN’s new Metroblogs - and our Arts and Media Correspondent Amy Knight’s Culture Blog - on the left hand side of the homepage and in each issue of News Review.

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Urban design

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