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Stories

Contemporary Congregation Sp

Lucia R, Architect • Mar 7

When designing public spaces such as retail buildings or transportation hubs, circulation is no longer the only priority; while circulation efficiency is still a critical design element, there's another component just as relevant in contemporary times which is the need for integrated congregation spaces for commuters or shoppers on the move. Shopp... Read More

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Retail Spaces: Urban Design

Karissa A, Architect • Feb 25

The successful urban image of the city is the result of the deliberate accumulation of independent elements intertwining with each other. While architecture talks micro-scale, urban design integrates the macro-scale connectivity of buildings, roads and public realm. Moreover, commercial urban design strategies help in the cultural growth of the ne... Read More

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Breathing Architecture: Gree

Karissa A, Architect • Feb 15

With infinite benefits such as improved air quality, aesthetic improvement, reduction of urban heat island effect and energy efficiency, building structures are now covered with greenery. From the freestanding trellis system of green facades to the in-built wall modules of the living wall system, architectural facades are now brimming with life li... Read More

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Architectural Applications o

Lucia R, Architect • Jan 20

When one thinks of fiberglass in architecture, the first thing that comes to mind is insulation; but fiberglass has many other architectural uses, some unknown to most architects. Whether it's used on the structure or as a complimentary embellishment, this material can be surprising. Furthermore, this material has a wide list of positive properties... Read More

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Ignite the Flame: Wood Burni

Karissa A, Architect • Jan 17

Over the last few decades, wood burning systems morphed from a simple heating method to a redefined technological innovation centering on a focal point of reducing emission and increasing heating efficiency. When choosing a wood burning appliance, factors such as placement, sizing, installation, make-up air and maintenance are carefully taken into... Read More

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Glass & Steel Ensemble: Stru

Karissa A, Architect • Jan 16

Due to the recent innovation of the facade technology, structural glazing systems have reached new heights with its glass and steel ensemble. One cannot undermine the beauty of the exposed minimal structural system as it exhibits refined craftsmanship with its high quality materials and finishes. Structurally, the tension-based support system rend... Read More

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How to Design Contemporary S

Lucia R, Architect • Jan 2

Building in indigenous zones can be very sensitive. Sometimes in trying to honor an ancient culture, you end up mangling their heritage, and making a wrong decision that could enrage a whole community; and by ignoring them completely, can lead to a big disservice to the whole culture. Making sure you're melding both their culture and your interpre... Read More

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Linking Architecture & Techn

Karissa A, Architect • Jan 2

Interactive systems were all the hype during this festive season. Some of the recent emerging technologies yield a functional crossover with architecture. Mostly responsive systems, technology has provided an innovative outlet for the transformation of architecture concepts. Responsive elements of architecture such as lighting, color, lines and se... Read More

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Cut the Grain: Wood Veneer T

Karissa A, Architect • Jan 2

Wood veneer is a beauty in itself with its exceptionality in texture, color, figure and grain. Determined by the cutting method of the log relative to its growth rings as well as the selection of the veneer species, most architectural components are aesthetically enhanced through the natural characteristics of the wood veneers. Flat Cut (Plain Sli... Read More

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Reaching for the Sky: From T

Lucia R, Architect • Dec 22

Through the ages, humans have been trying to reach the very heavens through architecture. But why do we aim to touch the sky? There have been, and are, many reasons human beings erect high buildings; those reasons go from the utilitarian to the esoteric, and understanding them can give us a better perspective of the architectural structures that h... Read More

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Desert Dwellings: How to Des

Lucia R, Architect • Dec 15

A desert environment is hostile by nature; building in the desert means having to prepare your design to withstand extreme sunlight and heat, and relentless cold temperatures- all in one day. Nature inspired solutions Even if it seems impossible to live in such an environment, it's perfectly possible to adapt; when it comes to finding inspiratio... Read More

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How to Construct Timber Roof

Veronica R • Dec 14

The roof is probably one of the most, if not the most important part of a building as it protects everything inside a building - including its occupants. The roof truss is a strong, triangulated framework usually made from timber and provides support for a roof. Trusses, which may be custom built, are usually named according to their shape such as... Read More

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Public Realm: Urban Park Str

Karissa A, Architect • Dec 6

The modern urban park is not only considered a focal point of a neighborhood, but also a node for social interaction of the public realm - the residents and visitors of the community. Such design strategies would include principles of open spaces and recreation, children's play areas, plazas and street connectivity, pedestrian pathways, bicycle ne... Read More

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Inox: Stainless Steel Finish

Karissa A, Architect • Dec 6

Providing a range of architectural benefits, this low-maintenance and corrosion-resistant building material produces a multitude of applications from the small kitchen to towering skyscrapers. A powerhouse material on its own with the inert ability to be transformed into different finishes, stainless steel should be included on every architect's g... Read More

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Saving the Night from Light

Veronica R • Dec 1

You've heard of air, noise and water pollution numerous times but light pollution is less known. This type of pollution which is defined as poorly installed light using inefficient lighting or excessive lighting, not only masks views of the night sky but also causes many environmental problems and skyglow which is the brightness of the night sky u... Read More

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Soil as a Structural Materia

Lucia R, Architect • Dec 1

Earth construction is one of the oldest building methods around. Now that architects around the world are more concerned than ever with climate change and green alternatives, choosing this eco-friendly and cheap source is looking very appealing- but still very unknown which is why not everyone thinks of it as a solution. Among other benefits, eart... Read More

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How to Design a Trendy Conte

Lucia R, Architect • Nov 23

For a while now, wineries have been becoming more than storage units and factories: they embody the spirit of the wine they produce, they display the concept the winery is trying to sell. Wine is more than just a beverage, it's an experience, which is why many wineries are now open to the public for tours and tastings. Keeping that in mind, what n... Read More

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Sound Travels: Acoustic Trea

Karissa A, Architect • Nov 23

Acoustical comfort in the office not only pertains to the specific materials used to mitigate the physical sound but also the ability of a workspace to conduct concentrative, interactive and confidential work. Such cases would be to find the equilibrium with finding solitude to support the knowledge complexity of the work involved and the planned... Read More

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Conventional and Innovative:

Karissa A, Architect • Nov 22

From structural to aesthetics, the various functions and practical applications of wood in architectural buildings such as churches, government, residential and commercial structures will always be underrated. Starting from the traditional, conventional wood frame construction include techniques such as platform frame, balloon frame, plank and bea... Read More

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Concrete Blocks: Waffle Slab

Karissa A, Architect • Nov 16

In reference to the conventional construction method of two-way flat slab, such need for longer spans and heavier loads necessitate the increased slab thickness for the deflection limit. The increased slab thickness then turns the dead load into the main design load, wherein structural solution would be required to the rhythmic arrangement of void... Read More

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How Architecture and Enginee

Lucia R, Architect • Nov 14

Architecture can't exist without engineering, as much as some would like to think otherwise- thanks to engineering, our buildings stand strong and many seemly impossible things become possible. But, can architects do an engineer's job? Can engineers do an architect's job? In theory, both are possible- take Santiago Calatrava, as an example: he's a... Read More

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Visual Merchandising 101: De

Karissa A, Architect • Nov 3

Visual Merchandising is the art and science of subtle selling technique incorporated with architectural and design methods in the retail industry. A silent salesperson in itself, the aesthetics of pop-up retail spaces or leasable stalls speaks to the users from the exterior signage to the traffic layout and immersive experience inside. Functional... Read More

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Go Green: Sustainable Tropic

Karissa A, Architect • Nov 3

From the integration of passive design measures and energy efficiency, use of alternative water sources, selection of construction materials for healthy indoor environment, consideration of lower embodied energy materials, and finally, to the restoration of ecological habitat, sustainable tropical building design mitigates the environmental impact... Read More

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Considerations for Building

Lucia R, Architect • Oct 31

One of the hardest climates to build for is a cold one; the wrong design could leave you with a cold home, dripping walls, peeling paint, colds and other mishaps. Architecture can be used as a tool to make homes better equipped to bear it. Below are some ways architectural design can be used to accommodate cold climates. Insulation: Insulation is... Read More

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Marble: A Classic Beauty's I

Karissa A, Architect • Oct 25

Exquisite and an elegant material per se, the veined and fine-textured compressive marble ranges in application from residential to commercial, from interior to exterior, and from slabs to veneer tiles. Marble blocks or panels are usually cut, handled, packaged, shipped and installed carefully without breakage and chipped edges. Three main kinds o... Read More

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Architecture Engineering:

Karissa A, Architect • Oct 21

An emerging construction design trend deviating from the conventional methods, space frame technology marries the three pillars of architecture - utilitas (function), firmitas (structural) and venustas (aesthetics). Known for its lightweight structure, the spatial unit of a tetrahedron forms geometric pattern interlocked with rigid joints. Being v... Read More

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Finding and Designing the Ri

Lucia R, Architect • Oct 19

When it comes to ventilating an apartment, especially if it's small, you hit a couple of bumps. Houses are easier to ventilate, because they have more design options available; houses can make use of their roofs to ventilate using pressure differences and solar chimneys, for instance, whereas apartments have no roofs to make use of (unless they're... Read More

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Floating Structures: Design

Lucia R, Architect • Oct 12

Floating houses could be an answer to big-city population problems: cities like London, Tokyo and Shanghai, with plenty of water around and little room to spare, could benefit from this method of building. It could also provide a solution for cities prone to inundations and tsunamis on their coasts - building homes that could withstand sudden floo... Read More

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Utilizing Responsive Smart M

Karissa A, Architect • Oct 6

With all the hype regarding the use of automation in 21st century homes and the looming concerns regarding the global environment, understanding the smart materials from a product context entails us to move from micro to macro perspective. What can smart materials actually do in order for a designer to yield optimal results for a sustainable archi... Read More

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Different Ways to Make Pixel

Lucia R, Architect • Sep 28

Pixelated surfaces can add a lot of character to a project, giving it movement and visual depth. Any surface can be pixelated, as long as its structural stability isn't compromised. There are different ways to designing a pixelated surface, that vary from strictly superficial to structural. Tessellation Tessellation implicates covering a surface... Read More

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How to Design a Perfect Cont

Lucia R, Architect • Sep 26

A large number of people spend a tremendous amount of time inside an office, and the design and layout can affect not only their mental health but their physical health too. Long gone are the days of grey cubicle offices, as more and more companies over the world are rethinking office designs to make their employees happier and healthier, improvin... Read More

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Creating the Ideal Indoor Ga

Veronica R • Sep 19

An indoor garden may include something as simple as plants on a shelf to an entire living wall, such as the three-story indoor vertical garden of an office building in Elche, Spain, or the living wall in Edmonton International Airport in Alberta, Canada. Whether in a residential or commercial space, plants in an indoor garden such as bamboo, Chine... Read More

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How to Project and Build a H

Lucia R, Architect • Sep 13

Treehouses usually remind us of two things: childhood getaways and whimsical fantasy creatures living in the forest. Nowadays, building on trees is not relegated to fantasy or child's-play; the appeal of having a vast view and an less invasive, immersive natural experience have turned treehouses into a desirable design option. There are vacation t... Read More

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The Fifth Wall

Tim E • Aug 30

No longer the fifth wall.. Yesterday, ceilings inspired human kind and architects. Ceilings would be an architect's gateway to the heavens. Of course, back then, they had the space. Nevertheless, the perfect example is Jeronimos Monastery in Spain. Their ribbed vaulted ceiling is reaching for the heavens. How could someone not look up and be in aw... Read More

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Creating the Look and Feel o

Veronica R • Aug 30

The ceiling is the part of a room that is sometimes overlooked. However, there are many different ways that you can create visual interest in a room just by adding a design to the ceiling alone. Updating the look of a room by transforming a plain ceiling is fairly simple as this can be done to an existing space or during construction. A ceiling's... Read More

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How to address designing, re

Lucia R, Architect • Aug 26

Sometimes we have to build very close, next to or in a delicate surrounding; it could be an historical site or ruin, a protected building or even a natural setting that could easily be ruined by the wrong design proposal. We have to ask ourselves, what's the best way to approach that situation? How can we build and be respectful to our surrounding... Read More

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Achieving Organic Shaped Str

Lucia R, Architect • Aug 23

Organic structures, shape-wise, are the opposite of orthogonal ones: they often don't follow straight lines and shapes, which makes them a little more difficult to achieve using traditional methods of construction and retail materials. That being said, organic structures are not entirely different to orthogonal ones when it comes to assembling the... Read More

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Designing with Colored Concr

Veronica R • Aug 22

From translucent to opaque, the color choices for concrete are endless, thereby allowing you to achieve different looks with colored concrete. Colored concrete can be made to look like different materials such as brick, slate or even tile and colors can range from earth tones to vibrant hues. Colored concrete with finishing techniques like stampin... Read More

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Placing your stamp on concre

Veronica R • Aug 22

Stamped Concrete Concrete stamps, which are made of polyurethane or metal, have inlaid designs that are available in various decorative patterns and textures. The stamps may also be made to look like other building materials such as stone, wood or brick, or have a pattern such as leaves or an abstract design. Stamped concrete is achieved by imprin... Read More

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How to solve common concrete

Veronica R • Aug 16

Concrete is a versatile and durable artificial stone which is made by mixing aggregate and water. It can be cast to form almost any shape and is used not just to build structures, but for driveways, built-in furniture, roads, sidewalks, dams and bridges. Concrete is economical, can withstand high temperatures and is wind, water and fire resistant... Read More

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