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Message - Re: ArchWeek - Foster's New City Hall - for Per

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Posted by  Per Corell on March 07, 2003 at 04:21:51:

In Reply to:  Re: ArchWeek - Foster's New City Hall - for Per posted by Kevin Matthews on March 06, 2003 at 20:44:37:

Hi
The designs is very exiting ,still when you try understanding the volume as a whole , you se the floors and the tradisional horisontaly , vertical structures being the core of the structure.
I still se a multible structure where the surface point to a new trend ----- now please se that there is nothing wrong in trends, -- but I se Forsters building as one step in the right direction even the attitude of the structure can be discussed.
The framework parts is seperat structures pointed to the specific function of glass surfaces, but as you know , my point is that we often lock our emagination within specific functions , forgetting the importance of side-effects.
When you check the new Disney concert hall from a structural point of view, you will be left with a doubt about why they needed so heavy frames to hold thin surface panels ; you get the impression that the engineers been fignting a heavy-duty but acturly useless steel framework produced as rigid as possible and with as much trouble as possible, ------ only to form walls that do not need this sort of heavy framing. Then when you look for a reson to force a structure into being mainly the "surface" , you get the idear that this is only becaurse architecture havn't yet discovered the options with a direct link to production.
Fosters building do not carry these foults but is an exiting challance in terms of forming the inviroment, -- even doing this within a monolit structure seem an impossible task , my personal oppinion about Forsters new building softened as the structure is also an alternative to what we se in loads ; glass temples so square that you wonder where the human being shuld feel comfort ; here I love the detail and the obvious will to "play" with forms and I am quite sure, that the building will be much nicer than the ten glass temples being build in simular arears. This building will have a charecter nomatter glass and steel.
So when you se the Disney concert hall you will know that engineers soon need some hands-on experience from artists with a wider horison and vision about what building structures can be, ------ I guess I again stepped cross this fine line critisising a few architectural Icons being not what they promise, but with Fosters building the engineers solved the problem and the expression point in a direction, where you don't hide the "primitive" rigid 3 plane framework as it is to ugly to show, ------- but the structure you ask my oppinion about, is a "surface thing" , even the impression you get point to new trends ,it still do not offer the important side effects you will find with 3D-H .
Now Fosters building is obviously "formed" by the need of so many floors and with a 3D-H structure you would proberly place part floors as a 3D maze ,where each "floor" will be very different than all others ; you would proberly start with the outher limits and the structure formed by very different idears when you se the possibilities, but the interiour volumes as they are projected, is based on how you make floors and interiors in a tradisional structure and a wider use of 3D-H would proberly have produced a building with a very different interiour , as this is what the tool offer.
So simularity in expression don't mean that function follow form , Fosters building is an exiting project as it challance the square glass boxes, but in terms of new technology and the demands that soon will come about flexible construction tools , it only scratch the surface.
The Disney hall on the other hand, is vasted on the abilities of the engineers, that didn't se the challance replacing obviously stupid heavy-duty framework, as while this is how emty shells allway's was done , ----- fiddeling the obvious possibilities of develobing rigid way's to "se" a building structure as anything else than how this been made for the last 100 years ; before the computer offered better tools.
Maby you are right, it's not the architects but the engineers that is the trouble, --- Forsters building represent somthing genuine where I can point to countless structural issues, that make Disney concert hall, into a lookalike high-tech rumble that make no good to architecture, ----- just one huge battle against the materials to form an emty volume with a fancy look ; now this is not what true visions is about and then I said my oppinion about how to many architects se high-tech.

P.C.

P.s.
The Disney hall is made from steel beams that is bended to form the exiting forms, ---- with 3D-H you do not Bend anything, or fiddle a shape to fit a thin surface covering like you se in the link ; I do not critic the forms, but the fact that these rigid frameworks , based on standard steel beams, is a dead-end road.
From a 3D-Honeycomb point of view, it is silly to force and bend heavy steel beams when the same and even a better ,stronger result can be achived much more accurate, much easyer and cheaper by cutting plain sheet materials. into an assembly framework without trusses ,knees and bolts.

 
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