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Team Austria Wins Solar Decathlon 2013 - Irvine, California

The 2013 Solar Decathlon winner is the LISI house by Team Australia. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon
With a total score of 951.922, the LISI house designed and built by Team Austria, has won the 2013 Solar Decathlon.
The prototype house is a timber-frame structure designed for transportability. Two patios extend the 639-square-foot (59-square-meter) home's living area. The larger of the two also incorporates an herb garden irrigated by a rainwater reservoir.
Floor plan drawing. Image: Team Austria
LISI's passive solar design incorporates a system of automated awnings and shades to maintain thermal comfort within the living space. A photovoltaic array supplies power to offset energy use.
Active systems include a two-unit air-water heat pump system that provides domestic hot water and heating and cooling with a multifunction air and water subfloor delivery system. Waste heat is also recovered from the home's shower and HVAC system.
Main interior living space. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon
The  U.S. Department of Energy sponsors the biannual competition, which this year was held in Irvine, California, after more than a decade of competitions held at the National Mall in Washington, D.C.  

Entry ramp and cloth shades. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon

Exterior overview of LISI house. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon

Main patio with shades deployed. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon

Interior living space. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon

Bedroom. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon

Bathroom. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon

Patio. Photo: Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon
Section drawing. Image: Team Austria

Section drawing. Image: Team Ausria

Stirling Prize Shortlist 2013

A new residence built in the remains of Astley Castle is one of the shortlisted projects. Photo: Brian Wood
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced the project shortlist for the 2013 Stirling Prize. Named for British architect James Stirling, this year's prize will be awarded to one of the following six designs:

Photo: Daniel Hopkinson
Park Hill Phase 1, in Sheffield, England
by Hawkins\Brown with Studio Egret West

"Reinvention of the loved and loathed Grade II* listed 1960s housing estate. The structure of the building remained in place whilst key features were changed – interior layout, windows, security and much more.  It stands as a beacon for imaginative regeneration, quality mass housing and the bold reuse of a listed building."

Zaha Hadid in New York

Early design rendering of 520 West 28th Street, in New York City. Image: Zaha Hadid Architects

London, England-based Zaha Hadid Architects has been commissioned to design a boutique condominium adjacent to the High Line at 520 West 28th Street in Chelsea just south of Hudson Yards. The 11-story residential development, owned by Related Companies, will be Hadid's first project in New York City.

The firm released an initial rendering of the project design, which shows an L-shaped and heavily glazed building sporting a subdued version of Hadid's fluid style, seeming to express a vertical stacking of large, split-level units.

And while views of the High Line are emphasized through the building's orientation and overall massing, the viewer is left with the sense that Hadid's building has little interest in engaging in a spatial dialog with the elevated park as other new structures, such as The Standard hotel and HL23 have.

Quoted in a firm press release, Pritzker Prize laureate Zaha Hadid explained the design thinking:

KPF in Madison, New Jersey

The Realogy Headquarters building, designed by KPF, is organized around a glazed, multistory atrium. Photo: Michael Moran

The new Madison, New Jersey headquarters for Realogy Holdings Corportaion, a real estate franchising company, is a warmly toned, welcoming building whose glass-dominated wings enclose a courtyard. Kohn Pedersen Fox designed the extensive reskinning of the suburban building, which was a Verizon call center in its past life with a minimally glazed, introverted facade.

Image: Bing Maps
Image: Google Maps

KPF's design strategy was to cut the central third out of the existing, essentially rectangular 225-square-foot (21,000-square-meter) original building, extending the two remaining pieces into long parallel wings running east-west. The resulting building has an increased area of 285,000 square feet (26,000 square meters).

KPF reskinned and renovated an outdated Verizon call center to create a new Class-A headquarters for Realogy, in Madison, New Jersey. Photo: Michael Moran

Scottish Design Awards

Schmidt Hammer Lassen designed a new library building for the University of Aberdeen campus in Aberdeen, Scotland. Photo: Adam Moerk

The Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS has announced 12 winners of its RIAS Awards for 2013. In addition to winners in its main awards section, as it continues to evolve the program, RIAS also announced three new sponsored topical subcategories for use of timber, for sustainability, and for resource efficiency.

The RIAS Awards 2013 winners are:

Photo:  Paul Zanre Photography
The Beacon Arts Centre, Greenock, Scotland
LDN Architects
Client: Greenock Arts Guild
"This building seems wholly appropriate for its superb waterside setting. It is elegantly contemporary in its materials and form, both open and welcoming.

Moshe Safdie in Los Angeles, California

The fourth phase of the Skirball Cultural Center, under construction in Los Angeles, California will open in October 2013. Image: Courtesy Skirball Cultural Center

Construction continues on the fourth and final phase of the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, California, set to open in October 2013. The thirty-year project has been masterplanned and designed by Moshe Safdie.

This phase of the development will feature two adjoining buildings – Herscher Hall and Guerin Pavilion – on the north side of the campus. These facilities will provide additional space for the Skirball's programming, including the addition of 40,000 square feet of classrooms, conference spaces, gardens, and a grand hall accommodating up to 1,200 guests. The 9,000-square-foot (840-square-meter) grand hall is daylit by nearly 100 custom skylights in a roof supported by Oregon Douglas Fir beams.

Interior rendering of the great hall and its window wall. Image: Courtesy Skirball Cultural Center

A large window-wall frames a view of the cascading terraced courtyard garden, which contains 30 Japanese maple trees. And the entrance plaza to the new building is accented with coral trees, enamel art panels, and a fountain.

The campus building palette comprises pink Tadoussac stone, recessed glazing, stainless steel roofs, vaulted ceilings, and discreet planted areas.

RIBA Awards 2013

The Chapel of Saint Albert the Great, in Edinburgh, Scotland was designed by Simpson and Brown. Photo: Chris Humphreys

From a beautifully-crafted chapel in the back garden of an Edinburgh townhouse to the yellow-roofed Ferrari Museum in Italy, and from a new 'green' flagship store in Cheshire, to a new visitors center at the Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland, a total of 52 projects throughout the United Kingdom and European Union are winners of the 2013 RIBA National Awards.

Shiro Studio inherited the design of the yellow-roofed Ferrari Museum, in Modena, Italy following the death of Jan Kaplick√Ĺ. Photo: Studio Cento29

According to RIBA (the Royal Institute of British Architects), one third of this year's UK winners are education buildings. And fewer medium-scale projects won this year, although large- and small-scale projects are well represented. Many of the winners are publicly, charity, or foundation funded, with only one commercial office building in the mix.

A major renovation of the Park Hill estate housing complex was designed by Hawkins Brown & Studio Egret West. Photo: Daniel Hopkins

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