There’s a new tower in town, and for once it’s not made of steel and glass… After a month of construction, David Benjamin and his firm, The Living, have completed the world’s first large-scale structure made of mushroom bricks. Better known as ‘Hy-Fi‘, the tower is the winning design of this year’s MoMA Young Architects Program, and like the works that preceded it, it’s an idea that asks us to rethink what we know about materials, fabrication and architecture in an urban context.
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Every year MoMA PS1 holds a competition that gives emerging architects the opportunity to build a full-scale pavilion for their courtyard space in Long Island City, Queens. Past winners of the Young Architects Program (YAP) have gone on to do some great things, becoming hotly sought after for their skills and world-renowned for their incredible works (Do HWKN, SHoP and Work Architecture Company, ring a bell?). As no surprise, this year’s winner is no shrinking violet, and he together with his team are bringing something unprecedented to the PS1 courtyard space. Architect David Benjamin and his studio, The Living, have devised a plan to construct a spectacular “Hy-Fi” tower made from a self-assembling, mushroom-based material that can be completely composted once the summer is over.
This past weekend we got a sneak peek of the towers rising at the LIC site. Check out our photos of the mushroom wonder ahead.
Long Island City gets glassier by the day, and now Tishman Speyer is teaming up with Toronto’s H&R REIT to build a three-tower, 1.2 million-square-foot “landmark luxury residential rental development” with 1,600 residential units and 30,000 square feet of retail space.
The dynamic duo paid a total of $55.6 million for the piece of land acquired from a partnership. The pair announced that they would put $875 million into the development, and construction is slated to kick off in 2015, playing out in three phases. Phase I will see the construction of a 42-story building with 700 units, with occupancy for those apartments expected for 2017. The new development will be sited across from the Gotham Center, which is located at Queens Plaza and 28th and was also developed by Tishman.
An overturned ark has washed ashore Socrates Sculpture Park. But don’t worry, Long Island City isn’t the scene of a maritime accident — the upside-down barge is a brand new art installation designed by Philadelphia’s Austin + Mergold.
Dubbed the SuralArk, the hulking vessel — which spans 50-feet-wide and 18-feet-tall — is the 2014 winner of Folly, Socrates Sculpture Park’s annual design competition co-sponsored with the Architectural League of New York. Austin + Mergold beat out 169 other entries from established designers and studios across the country to nab the top honors, giving their ark a summer-long stint at the park.
It’s become all too common in New York City — artists move into a neighborhood, make it trendy and culturally vibrant, and then are forced out by rising rents. It happened in Greenwich Village, Soho, the East Village, DUMBO, and Williamsburg. Do not be disheartened, though, there are still plenty of artist enclaves with thriving creative communities. Ahead are our ten current frontrunners — some may surprise you!