Makoko Floating City, Lagos, Nigeria

Read more about the effort by 2 architects to improve living conditions, Lagos shows how a city can recover from a deep, deep pit:

In 1997 two architects set out to rethink Lagos, an African megacity that had been largely abandoned by the state. Amid the apparent chaos and crime, they discovered remarkable patterns of organisation. Two decades later, Rem Koolhaas and Kunlé Adeyemi discuss the past, present and future of the city – and reveal why their own project never saw the light of day

There work is a great example how appropriate technology and architecture can be used to provide for the needs to communities. Here is a longer video on Kunlé Adeyemi efforts:

Related: Influential Architects: Mies van der RoheUsing Algae Filled Window Panes to Provide Passive and Active SolarConcrete Houses 1919 and 2007Green Building with Tire Bales

China Opens the World’s Largest Building

New Century Global Centre is a multipurpose building in Chengdu, China. The building has 1,700,000 square meters of floor space, making it the world’s biggest building measured by floor space. It is half a million square feet larger than the former title holder, Dubai’s International Airport Terminal 3. It is 3 times the size of the Pentagon.

The Boeing Everett Factory in Everett, Washington has the largest volume, and the Aalsmeer Flower Auction Building in Aalsmeer, Netherlands, has the largest footprint.

Nearly 400,000 square meters of the building will be devoted to shopping. It will also house offices, conference rooms, a university complex, two commercial centers, hotels, an IMAX cinema, a “Mediterranean village”, a pirate ship, a skating rink and a 5,000 square meter artificial beach.

The building was designed by award-winning British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid.

The Intercontinental Hotel will feature 1,009 rooms that are spread over 6 x 8 story blocks around the edge of the complex.

While parts of the shopping area are open, the main opening is planned for 22 August 2013.

Related: Underground Hotel, Shimao WonderlandWonderful Low Impact Woodland House

Webcast on Oscar Niemeyer

Oscar Niemeyer (1907-2012) was best known for his design of civic buildings for Brasília, a planned city which became Brazil’s capital in 1960, as well as his collaboration with other architects on the United Nations Headquarters in New York City.

Niemeyer’s first major project was the design of a series of buildings for Pampulha, a planned suburb north of Belo Horizonte. His work, especially on the Church of Saint Francis of Assisi, received critical acclaim, and drew Niemeyer international attention. Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, Niemeyer became one of Brazil’s most prolific architects, designing a range of buildings both within the country and overseas.

He received the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 1988.

Related: Influential Architects: Mies van der RoheOscar Niemeyer official site

Underground Hotel – Shimao Wonderland

view of propose 'underground hotel' - build into a cliff

Shimao Wonderland Intercontinental by Atkins, Bristol, United Kingdom

This is a concept design for Shimao Wonderland Intercontinental in Songjiang, China by Atkins (Bristol, United Kingdom). The design was shortlisted at the World Architecture Festival 2009

The client’s brief called for a unique solution to a problem of siting the hotel in such a way that only 2 levels projected above the rock face of the 90m deep quarry. Particular request for underwater public areas and guestrooms was successfully accommodated in the design. The concept adopted the image of a green hill cascading down the rock face as a series of terraced landscaped hanging gardens. The central vertical circulation atrium connecting the quarry base with the ground level is in the form of a transparent glass ‘waterfall’

The winning architectural team includes Paul Rice, Hu Yali, Zhang Jian and Ding Fang from Atkins Shanghai led by Martin Jochman from Atkins in Bristol.

The building is under construction with an expected completion in 2013 or 2014.

Related: Headquarters of HuaiNan Animation Technology Industrial Park

Influential Architects: Mies van der Rohe

Mies van der Rohe was born in Germany and moved to the USA during his career as an Architect. He was known for stripping down design to the minimal structure needed.

Examples of his architecture include: Farnsworth House, Seagram Building, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library, and the Neue Nationalgalerie at the Kulturforum is a museum for modern art in Berlin.

In addition to buildings he designed furniture including, the Barcelona chair, the Brno chair, and the Tugendhat chair.

Related: Mies van der Rohe SocietyLow Impact Woodland HouseFundació Mies van der Rohe