ArchiWEB Explorer: Middle East

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Foster + Partners Design a "Glittering" Stadium for Qatar's 2022 World Cup

© Foster + Partners / Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy © Foster + Partners / Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy

The organizers behind the FIFA 2022 Qatar World Cup have released new images of the Foster + Partners-designed Lusail Stadium. Merging contemporary and historical influences, the “sleek, bold shape” of the arena is inspired by the bowls and vessels used in the Middle East across centuries.

Foster + Partners were chosen for the scheme’s design in 2015, ahead of David Chipperfield Architects, Mossessian & Partners and Mangera Yvars Architects. Located in Lusail City, 15 kilometers north of Doha, the 80,000-seat stadium will host the opening ceremony and final match of one of the world’s biggest sporting occasions.

Harvard Announces the 2019 Richard Rogers Fellows

Wimbledon House. Image © Iwan Baan Wimbledon House. Image © Iwan Baan

Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) has announced the six recipients of the 2019 cycle of the six recipients of their Richard Rogers Fellowship program. Inspired by Lord Richard Rogers’ “commitment to cross-disciplinary investigation and engagement,” the Fellowship established last year to support individuals “whose research will be enhanced by access to London’s extraordinary institutions, libraries, practices, professionals, and other unique resources.”

The 2019 winners were chosen from a pool of more than 140 applicants hailing from around the world. As in previous years, the fellowship allows the winners to spend a three-and-a-half month residency at the Rogers' Wimbledon House in London. The recipients also receive funding to cover their travel to London and $100,000 cash.

This year's selection committee included Alison Brooks, K. Michael Hays, Sharon Johnston, Hanif Kara, Mohsen Mostafavi, Patricia Roberts, Lord Richard Rogers, and Simon Smithson. 

This year's fellows and their bios below: 

2019 Richard Rogers Fellows

Spring 2019 Fellows

Refugee Baggage: Suitcase Dioramas Show Dark Scenes from Countries Fled

[ By WebUrbanist in Art & Sculpture & Craft. ]

The project of a Syrian-born artist and architect and an Iraqi-born author, this installation invites viewers to imagine what refugees leave behind when the pack up the few things they can carry and flee an oppressive regime or war-torn country.

The UNPACKED: Refugee Baggage installation by Mohamad and Ahmed Badr “sculpturally re-creates rooms, homes, buildings and landscapes that have suffered the ravages of war. Each is embedded with the voices and stories of real people — from Afghanistan, Congo, Syria, Iraq and Sudan — who have escaped those same rooms and buildings to build a new life in America.”

Leila Heller Gallery / L.S. Design

© 8th Street Studio © 8th Street Studio
  • Architects: L.S. Design
  • Location: Al-Serkal Avenue, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  • Lead Architects: Omar Abdelghafour
  • Other Participants: Omar Abdelghafour, Gerald Magpantay, Darin De-Grads
  • Area: 2500.0 m2
  • Project Year: 2016
  • Photographs: 8th Street Studio
© 8th Street Studio © 8th Street Studio

Text description provided by the architects. Showcasing some of the leading regional and international artists - many of whom will be presenting their work in the Middle East for the first time - Leila Heller Gallery is the largest privately held public art gallery in the Middle East. Located in one of Dubai’s most distinguished art hubs, Alserkal Avenue, the gallery consists of two warehouses merged with one another and transformed into a fully functioning gallery space.

German Embassy in Muscat / Hoehler + alSalmy

© Gijo Paul George © Gijo Paul George
  • Architects: Hoehler + alSalmy
  • Location: Embassy District, Muscat, Oman
  • Lead Architects: Muhammad Sultan Al Salmy, Daniel Schulze Wethmar
  • Area: 3959.0 m2
  • Project Year: 2017
  • Photographs: Gijo Paul George
© Gijo Paul George © Gijo Paul George

Text description provided by the architects. Located in the Diplomatic quarter of Muscat in the Sultanate of Oman, the new German Embassy premises is set to be a promising landmark and a one of a kind structure in the embassy district. The building ensemble includes the Chancellery building as well as the ambassador’s Residence, with external reception areas encompassing the traditional plantation of the Sultanate.

Cities Designed by Famous Architects

An aerial view of the planned Masdar City. An aerial view of the planned Masdar City.

While most architects are remembered for a monumental structure or commission, many of the most prolific names in the field at one point or another set their sights on designing the entirety of a city. Often venturing abroad to see their aesthetic vision come to life across unfamiliar territory (and often, an unsuspecting populace), city planning posed the perfect opportunity to realize one’s architectural doctrine across unimaginable scales. Below, brush up on some of the biggest ventures into urban planning. Whether these plans failed or came to fruition, they ultimately function as crucial insights into the consequences of an outsider defining sense of place and space for a foreign audience for generations.

Manila, Philippines

Daniel Burnham, 1905

China's Mega Industrial Regeneration Project has Lessons for the World

Courtesy of CCTN Design Courtesy of CCTN Design

Across the world, developed cities are rebelling against heavy industry. While some reasons vary depending on local circumstances, a common global drive towards clean energy, and the shifting of developed economies towards financial services, automation, and the gig economy, is leaving a common trace within urban centers. From Beijing to Detroit, vast wastelands of steel and concrete will stand as empty relics to the age of steel and coal.

The question of what to do with these wastelands, with defunct furnaces, railways, chimneys, and lakes, may be one of the major urban questions facing generations of architects to come. What can be done when the impracticality of industrial complexes, and the precious land they needlessly occupy, collides with the embodied energy, memories, and histories which few would wish to lose?

A big challenge for a little town – Regain the pride with Daisetsu – Forest Banquet Garden

Project Background
A big challenge for a little town – Regain the pride
Depopulation and deterioration
Ninety five percent of town of Kamikawa is covered with forest.
has been serious since the loss of their primary industry, forestry.
people in the town but it has decreased to less than 4,000. What supports their life is tourism to Daisetsu National Park and hot spring Soun-kyo Onsen. Unfortunately, it is not the reliable source of their income. There are only two million visitors a year, which is two third of their high peak in history.

Divided community and the town without pride
There were two kinds of physical and mental gaps in Kamikawa. One was residents versus tourists due to a lack of interactions. The other was the gap between the industries; agriculture, tourism and businesses. This was caused by a lack of interactions. Majority of the resident is elderlies and the town struggled with the labor shortage. The deteriorating in many ways; they had been a town with not pride.

Dubai 2020 Expo Pavilions and Architecture

UK Pavilion. Image Courtesy of Es Devlin UK Pavilion. Image Courtesy of Es Devlin

For the Dubai 2020 Expo, the United Arab Emirates and Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, selected the theme Connecting Minds, Creating the Future. Organized around ideas of Sustainability, Mobility and Opportunity, the next world Expo will be the first to be held in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia region. Organised every five years, the world expo lasts six months and is created as a global destination for millions of people to share ideas, showcase innovation, encourage collaboration and celebrate human ingenuity.

How Cities have Rebuilt from the Ashes

Image via PXHere Image via PXHere

Every city has a story. Throughout history, many natural and man-made changes have altered the way cities were originally laid out. For some, the urban form developed as a result of political disputes, religious separations, or class divides. For others, a more mixed approach has allowed for uniquely mixed cultural atmospheres. And while development of cities is typically slow, occasionally cities experience dramatic and immediate changes to the urban fabric - the results of natural disaster, military conflict, or industrial catastrophe.

What happens next - if anything - can reveal a great deal about not just the city itself, but the local culture. Do cities rebuild exactly as they were? Or do they use disaster as an opportunity to reinvent themselves? The following is a roundup of cities that have moved past catastrophe to be reborn from the ashes.