27 Jul 2012

Live Project..

So, whilst most students finish up their degrees and go partyyyy... not me and paul! Well we did a little... but we were then offered the challenge of designing a small extension for an even smaller coach house in West Bridgeford, Nr Nottingham.

The coach house belongs to the guy that actually wrote our MSc and is located at the bottom of his garden. The building is not listed but is located within an area of which a covenant applies stating that the existing building may not be altered significantly unless to a high degree of architectural design.

So in the past two days we've sat down and produced a few documents that would allow him to take our proposal to the planning office to gauge a response. If they like it then we shall proceed with a full planning application.

The proposal is designed to meet Lifetime Home criteria. It has a large porch which allows occupants to park their car and proceed to the dwelling under cover. This also creates a small courtyard and decked area which will receive sun almost all day long as well as offering full privacy from the main house. This courtyard can be accessed via bi-fold doors from the new downstairs en-suite bedroom (which used to be the kitchen) and also the new extension which too uses large bi-fold doors. Being surrounded by trees the porch also gives some coverage from falling leaves, which when combined with timber decking can become very slippery.

To prevent the extension becoming too hot in the summer a series of visors have been put in place, crawler plants can be used to increase density in this area and provide shade over the glazing in the summer, in the winter this should also allow maximum light to enter the building. The visors also help prevent the building from appearing too heavy and bulky and visually provide a light connection between the new and old. 

Shown below are three alternatives in terms of exterior finish, it is proposed that the timber cladding be used for ease of build and due to its ability to weather and blend in to the surroundings.

Timber cladding
 White render
 Black brick

Inside the extension offers a separate WC and area to hang coats upon walking through the door, followed by a kitchen and dining area. The kitchen has been designed to offer lots of easily accessible storage at a good height. The island would house the dishwasher and sink so as to exploit views in to the courtyard. The flow through the extension in to the coach house is aided by the existing opening and links the kitchen, dining and lounge area in an open yet cosy way. From the lounge there is access to the downstairs bedroom and the stairs to one further bedroom and ensuite.


View from proposed entrance

View from existing stairs

The building was designed to sheet sizes to aid the timber frame construction, minimising waste and expense.

I welcome any comments... Thanks for looking.

Nottingham Trent University

Well, upon finishing my MSc in Architectural Technology and Design at NTU, and with a few questions in my head as to what to do next... The uni decide to make my decision just that little bit tougher!!

After receiving distinctions in the masters, which has been more of an MA than an MSc, myself and my colleague Paul Colfer were both put in an extraordinarily unique position.. the university offered us both places on the MArch programme!

With the MArch only recently being accredited the school are keen to begin building a reputation and felt that, having seen our desire and progression through this past year, we were two people that might be able to help! And on top of all this... We would be welcomed straight in to the second year of the programme.

I believe the offer is open for three years, although we are awaiting confirmation on that. I feel i need a year in practice before committing to another year at university on a course which will once again be extremely demanding if i hope to leave with the highest grade.

All in all, though lots of hard decisions lay ahead... id say its not the worst predicament to be in!

Thank you NTU for everything :)

22 Jul 2012

Resume update..

Ok.. so the MSc is all done! What a ten months it has been! ... but what do i find myself doing just one day after the final presentation... my CV! I cant help it, i cant not work!!

Only major updates, bar the design change, are the additions of Rhino to the software list and working with BArch Architecture at Trent in the employment section.

It is early days with Rhino, but i am teaching myself the fundamentals with the intention of using this as my sole 3D modelling software in the future.. Ill be on it all day every day this week...

As for the employment update, I was very pleased to have been asked by the head of undergraduate architecture at NTU to tutor on both the Design Comms module and the Arch Tech module.

18 Jul 2012

Free Range Show, London

I know this is my final project, and i should be posting it on the other blog but i thought id put it on both..

Last week we had a mad one down in London at the Free Range exhibition! Was really nice to hear so many positive comments about my work. Below is a photo of my and my stand followed by a selection of the images i used..

Me and my stand...

1. The spaces
 2. 3D detail
 3. 2D details
 4. East elevation
 5. Entrance from Bridlesmith Gate high street
 6. Gallery space
 7. View in to the courtyard

Thanks for looking, i shall get the rest of the work up on the other blog, which can be found using the tab at the top of this page :)

17 May 2012

Group Design Project module @ NTU

The 'Group Design Project' was a live project carried out once again in term two of my MSc at Nottingham Trent University. Although it was called a 'group' project only really the initial site surveys and feasibility studies were carried out as a group the rest was individual. The module was also a continuation of last terms 'Design Communication' module so along with using Autocad, Sketchup, Artlantis and photoshop (software we were already familiar with) we began tutorials in Vectorworks and Cinema 4D.

The project involved interviewing the manager of a council owned leisure centre that is adjoined to a school. Currently the two share an entrance and changing rooms raising all sorts of issues ... The gym was also very small and had high-end equipment squeezed in to what was a storage room wrapping around the front of the building. The proposal therefore was to include an extension to the current leisure centre offering a new private entrance and reception area, an increase of 300% to the gym and new private changing rooms.

Below are the 2 boards that i used to communicate my idea to the council, for these visuals i used a Sketchup model, rendered in Kerkythea and post-processed in Photoshop...

In addition to these and as mentioned above we also began using Vectorworks and eventually Cinema 4D. Vectorworks was used to create a BIM model, this model as well as containing enough detail for the thing to be built was also then exported in to Cinema 4D to be rendered up, more visuals to be created and a fly-through animation shot. Exciting stuff!! I cant say that i got on with Vectorworks too well and certainly wouldnt be my software of choice in the future, i believe that Autodesks Revit is a better programme and BIM ready. However Cinema 4D was awesome and i am considering using this for the production of my 3D visuals during my final major study project... anyway here are some renders i have produced...

Technology Futures module @ NTU

The module 'Techonlogy Futures' was designed to let our imaginations run wild! First we dreamt up a scenario set 100 years in to the future, this could be based on projected figures or purely fictional. Personally it was my most testing module so far on the MSc, I really struggled to think on such a wide level and then to bring it really narrow and specific in terms of technology and detailing....

Below are my final presentation boards, my project was based in Canary Wharf, London and was set in the year 2075.

The project design is based on a permanent Graphene exoskeleton structure that progressively makes its way around, over and in between the existing urban fabric. Deconditioned buildings provide basic infastructure as well as recreational areas for inhabitants. The spatial organisation of the design promotes social interaction between the residents and reinforces their feeling of safety and security.

Parasite container modules will provide compact dwelling units that can be installed on site according to changing demand, creating an evolving space that is adaptable to meet the ever changing needs of the city. The modules themselves are configurable in many different ways offereing a unique opportunity to balance your own internal and external space to meet your needs.

16 May 2012

That was one busy term!

Sooo... Apologies for not updating this in such a long time! I think it is safe to say i have been very well occupied with the second term of my MSc in Architectural Technology and design.

Thats said... I now have a whole bunch of work to post. I think it is safe to say that the standard has increased ten-fold since term one and is only continuing to improve as the course goes on, I am really enjoying it especially the visualisation side of things.

I shall start posting up some of my work starting with the subject 'applied research and design for the built environment'. This required us to identify an issue that the built environment is currently suffering from and to propose a solution. Below are the boards i produced for final review...

Global population is projected to grow by 46% by 2050. 70% of these people will be living in our worlds cities. An increasing population and lack of adequate infrastructure, affordable housing, and urban planning will require a new, innovative system that is dynamic, flexible and adapting to change. Since society is dynamic, the way in which we inhabit our cities needs to be dynamic too.

Buildings and transportation today create two-thirds of the carbon in our atmosphere. Where we place our buildings , the way we build them and the way in which we move between them is vital in making a difference for future generations.

Creating cities that are compact and highly liveable is the goal. Creating adaptability among the existing was mine.

Page one shows the design of a 'pod' like structure that offers an extension of space for existing buildings, page two and three then show two extremes of how the structure might be used.

Another part of the 'Applied research and design for the built environment' subject required us to join forces with M.Arch students to form small practices where we would explore two case studies, one historic and one contemporary. The case studies had be linked to and support the topic/issue explored in the first part (shown above).

As a historic case study i looked at the Eames Case Study House for its raw frame structure that was adaptable to suit the needs of the ocuppier. My contemporary case study was the CUB house which uses a stackable method of construction to add flexibility to the dwelling. My boards for final presentation looked like this...

In short... what we highlighted really was the smaller the componant the more adaptable, thus the more usable the final outcome can be. This was explored conceptually on the last two boards. The issure with the CUB house was that it has been produced for a commercial market - the more bedrooms, the more they can market the property for. This results in a dwelling that whether there is one bedroom or five, occupants have the same amount of living space. This didnt work and with more time we would have liked to have developed our conceptual ideas further.

29 Jan 2012

Mr Bjarke Ingels Does it Again!

This guy is a genius... Check out this video, it is 22 mins long so if you want to skip parts focus on 8:05, 10:20, 18:50.

I've no doubts that once you've started watching it you wont want to stop anyway! Enjoy...


18 Jan 2012

Term One @ NTU

So here is a couple of examples of my work guys and gals :)

Project One :

Lifetime Homes - a residential housing estate, comprising 6 houses to lifetime home specification.

These visualisations were support items to formal drawings produced on Autocad. Documents were produced for planning permission, building regs and tender... The pages shown above were actually made up using photoshop after just 6 days of playing around. I was pretty pleased with the outcome and have since produced more and hopefully a lot better mock ups..

Another part of this project was to produce a 3d visualisation of the way part of the building should be constructed. Our visualisation tutor picked a complex detail and asked us to demonstrate to the contractor how he should build it in the simplest way. I broke mine up in to the four diagrams shown below...

These were modelled using Google Sketchup, rendered using Artlantis Studio and adjusted on Photoshop.

In another subject titled 'Horizon Scanning' we were provided with a site in Winchester, which was currently the location of a family home. The dwelling was dilapidated and beyond repair. We were asked to investigate the site and its surroundings before preparing a proposal for a modest yet modern family home. The context of the site was challenging in terms of its physical properties, placed on a hillside in a conservation area and surrounding by tall trees of which 95% were protected.

Through exploring massing studies, spaces and volumes became apparent. these then had to be combined with the clients requirements of their family dwelling including a master bedroom, 3 childrens bedrooms, a guest bedroom, family bathroom, kitchen/living/dining space, outdoor connecting spaces and covered parking for two cars.

The materials and construction methods were in fact irrelevant for this task and in fact the project was based more on the interpretation of the site and in turn the form that developed from this. Creating a building that acted as an environmental filter, using good design to control internal spatial conditions such as daylight and passive ventilation without using bolt-on technologies.

Below is my final presentation board displaying plans, sections, an external visual and an internal visual. Shown also is the model I produced to support my design and show the dwelling in context to the site.

Please leave comments :) Id like to know what you think...

12 Jan 2012

Boxpark, Shoreditch

The United Kingdom’s cities are littered with derelict sites once of industrial activity. The re-use of these sites does not have to be permanent in order to have an impact on the environment and its surroundings. With the Olympic Games heading to East London in 2012, Roger Wade, of designer clothing brand ‘Boxfresh’ felt it was the perfect time to launch his latest idea, Boxpark, a ‘pop-up’ shopping mall located on a brownfield site in Shoreditch. The Bishopsgate Goods Yard site opened its doors in August 2011 as the world’s first shopping mall to be constructed entirely using recycled shipping containers. The idea makes use of a site at a time when all eyes will be on the East of London, not only promoting the area but also the creative re-use of shipping containers.

The mall is split in two halves, retail at ground level and a mixed-use area upstairs including cafes, restaurants, coffee shops, art galleries and exhibition space. No high-street brands can be found on site either, encouraging the rise of new independent designers to demonstrate their innovative abilities to a wider audience. Boxpark, described as ‘Shoreditch’s answer to a 2011 shopping mall’ has identity, uniqueness and something that distinguishes itself from any other mall, within which you could quite easily forget where you were sometimes as they all look the same!!

The development displays grand scale recycling on a level that has not been seen in the world today, It makes use of an empty site in an expanding city, enhances the local economy, uses a completely recycled structural element and further still creates a vibrant social core encouraging interaction and life, a fantastic example of what can be achieved through recycling.

Comments please :) particularly if you have been there.. what did you think? did it feel temporary?? Ill be checking it out for sure over the next few weeks during my Xmas break.