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July 18 2014

Architects & Communalism Can Solve San Francisco’s Housing Crisis

July 18th, 2014Posted by 

San Francisco is in a housing crisis!  The skyrocketing housing market is pushing out the people that make the city a diverse and vibrant place with housing rates rising three times faster than the national average. Within the last two years the rental market has increased by an average of 20%, resulting in one bedroom apartment priced […]

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July 04 2014

San Francisco’s High-Tech Urbanism

July 4th, 2014Posted by 

Everyday we see how technology is changing the way we live and work, but how is it affecting our built environment? San Francisco is one of the major test grounds for new ideas and technological innovation and it is here that our interaction with the physical world is also evolving. New ways to interact, communicate […]

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June 19 2014

Transitional Shelter Lessons from San Francisco’s 1906 Earthquake

June 19th, 2014Posted by 

What does a transitional shelter do? After a disaster happens, many people are left homeless and need immediate shelter. A transitional shelter is meant to help them transition from temporary relief housing to a more permanent dwelling. Now, what does a transitional shelters actually do? Usually, it sits in the same location and inadequate condition […]

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June 05 2014

Eco-Districts: How San Francisco Does The Sustainable City

June 5th, 2014Posted by 

Sustainability can be a difficult thing to measure and even more difficult to implement, especially at a city wide scale. Many cities are bringing it down a notch and addressing sustainability at a local scale. San Francisco is one of a few cities that is adopting the eco-districts approach to individually addressing a cities various sustainability […]

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May 29 2014

Must we Build More? The Town of Wengen, Switzerland says No

May 29th, 2014Posted by 

Is there a limit to the size of a city? In Wengen there is, and it has been reached. Due to the ban on secondary residences in Switzerland, construction has come to a halt in many tourist towns where second homes already occupy more than 20% of the housing stock. Is this an appropriate way […]

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May 15 2014

Static Exteriors & Historical Preservation in Wengen, Switzerland

May 15th, 2014Posted by 

Just like energy, space is not created. It is something that already exists but can be transformed. As architects, it is our job to create a sense of place from an existing environment. Nowhere is this more evident than in Wengen, Switzerland, where designers must work with the existing housing stock due to the building […]

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May 01 2014

Wengen, Switzerland Maintains its Architectural Traditions, But Why?

May 1st, 2014Posted by 

In Wengen, Switzerland, nearly all the buildings resemble traditional Swiss chalets. In one of the wealthiest and most advanced countries in the world, the rural architecture has been left in the middle ages. Housing design has not visibly progressed over the last hundred years. Traditional chalets are a common style among mountain villages, which could […]

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April 17 2014

Using What You’ve Got: Recycled Building Materials of Wengen, Switzerland

April 17th, 2014Posted by 

In a ski town like Wengen, Switzerland, where there are enough skis to build everyone a seat, you don’t see much sports equipment being recycled and repurposed for furniture and building features. We have all seen the adirondack chairs built from skis, but where does this material choice come from? Does recycling local materials stem […]

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April 03 2014

Holiday Home Ban Pushes Architects Out of Wengen, Switzerland

April 3rd, 2014Posted by 

What use is an architect in a no-build zone? In the town of Wengen, the oncoming ban of second home construction in Switzerland is threatening architects main livelihood. Much of the construction industry may have to move elsewhere unless the role of the architect can encompass a broader scope of work to sustain itself in […]

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March 20 2014

Winter Comfort: Designing an Outdoor Environment in Wengen, Switzerland

March 20th, 2014Posted by 

Indoor/outdoor spaces bring us closer to nature without forfeiting our comforts of home, but usually we see images of summer locations with moderate temperatures. Is this relaxing environment achievable in more extreme climates? Wengen, Switzerland is a good example of how indoor/outdoor environments can exist during winter. People here immerse themselves in the scenery by […]

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March 06 2014

Why Have a Car When You Have Snow? Getting Around in Wengen, Switzerland

March 6th, 2014Posted by 

For some people, imagining a life without cars is impossible or just unrealistic given their dependence and lack of other transit options; but alternative urban planning schemes for transportation can help places function better without the automobile. Some of the best examples can be found in small sized towns, but a city doesn’t have to […]

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