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News Roundup

Mar 18, 2013

Happy almost-Spring Monday! Here’s a roundup of some of the most interesting and most shared articles from the last couple weeks from VIA’s Twitter and elsewhere around the ‘net:

photo credit: ArchDaily courtesy of Central House of Architects, full article below

Can the Longest Remaining Stretch of the Berlin Wall Be Saved From the Threat of Condos? (The Atlantic Cities)
It’s all happening so fast that locals can hardly believe it. In a move first announced publicly only on Thursday afternoon, Berlin developers attempted this morning to tear up and remove one of the last still-standing pieces of the Berlin Wall. Part of an intact 1400-yard stretch flanking the eastern bank of Berlin’s River Spree, a 25-yard chunk has been abruptly slated for removal, despite being protected by national monument status.

New Skyscraper-Deconstruction Technique Harvests Energy from Demolition Process (Inhabitat)
Demolishing tall buildings is typically a loud and messy process that produces a lot of dust and not a lot of building materials that can be salvaged. But Japan’s Taisei Corporation is pioneering a new technique that preserves building materials and actually generates energy from the demolition process.

Nordic Wood Festival of Wooden Architecture (ArchDaily)
Between March 15th and March 27th 2013 the Central House of Architects will host the Nordic Wood festival of wooden architecture in Moscow where the most interesting examples of wooden architecture in Scandinavia, the Baltic states and Russia will be on display.

Japan Turned the One Surviving Tsunami Tree Into a Gigantic Sculpture (Gizmodo)
Two years ago, Japan was ravaged by a horrible tsunami. And right on the anniversary of the disaster, a new memorial went up to the people and things who lived through it: the “miracle tree” that survived the surge has now been converted in a sculpture.

The Floorplans Of Famous TV Shows (1 Design Per Day)
Spanish artist Inaki Aliste Lizarralde has recreated the floor plans of famous TV shows. Among the apartments featured in Lizarralde’s ongoing series are Joey and Monica’s apartment from ‘Friends,’ Penny and Sheldon’s apartment from ‘The Big Bang Theory,’ Carrie Bradshaw’s apartment from ‘Sex and the City’ and Frasier Crane’s apartment from ‘Frasier.’

Take a Secret Peek Inside the Spire of the Chrysler Building (The Atlantic Cities)
Despite our ability to look at entire cities from outer space, the built environment still has an air of mystery about it. In one hand, you spin around the globe, stopping periodically to zoom in on your browser to inspect a peculiar geographic feature or building form, while with the other you clutch your morning bagel — all the while gazing up at the tower just outside your window. Or that’s what my morning looked like today, anyway. What goes on up there, at the tops of skyscrapers? And why doesn’t the internet have an answer?

An Abandoned London Power Station Could Find New Life As a Stunning Roller Coaster (Gizmodo)
The Battersea Power Station is an iconic London building, but it’s been tragically unused since it was decommissioned in 1983. Now architectural firm Atelier Zündel Cristea wants to turn that around with a proposal to make the abandoned spot a roller coaster.

Old 8-storey tall grain silos re-adapted for ice climbing (TreeHugger)
A handful of unused grain silos in Iowa, United States have been converted into eight-storey tall ice climbing walls, prompted in part by the immediate region’s lack of vertical surfaces.

Urban Cycling Basics (Global Site Plans)
Becoming a new urban cyclist can be extremely intimidating. But armed with some basic knowledge, anyone can become a confident urban cyclist.

Big Wood: Building Sustainable High-Rises in Wood (eVolo)
“Big Wood” is a prototype on mass timber construction that offers the possibility to build more responsibly while actively sequestering pollutants from our cities. Sited in Chicago; “Big Wood” aims to write a new chapter in high-rise construction.