February 09 2012

Transformers in Disguise: Compact Home Design to Optimize Space Efficiency

February 9th, 2012Posted by 

Can you imagine a small apartment, let’s say about 344 square feet, transforming into 24 different rooms? It’s possible. Well, at least when architects and engineers choose to focus on such a concept anyway, but the fact is that it has been done. Space is becoming more of a commodity, particularly within the city, such […]

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February 07 2012

Artisan Carpentry: The Timber Framers Guild Eastern Conference 2012

February 7th, 2012Posted by 

This May 2012, craftsmen from across the United States and Canada will descend on Port Townsend, Washington to discuss a building tradition developed in the 12th century, timber frame construction. The first question the uninitiated may ask is, “What is timber framing?” This construction method uses heavy wood joined together in intricate joints to create […]

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January 26 2012

The Benefits of Website Maintenance for Your Environmental Design Business

January 26th, 2012Posted by 

Within the field of architecture, engineering, environmental non-profit, landscape architecture and urban planning, attending to your website’s upkeep will help your business grow and continue to thrive. Clientele will most likely conduct research about your company prior to contacting you, and in today’s age, companies are always developing and maintaining websites to attract new and […]

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January 17 2012

Wind Turbines: Could Design Make Them More Appealing?

January 17th, 2012Posted by 

With the United Kingdom committed to producing 20% of its electricity from renewable sources by the year 2020, there seems to be an acceptance within the general public that sustainability has become a key issue in everyday life. But with around 50% of planning applications for new wind farms rejected in 2010, is the country […]

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January 11 2012

Unique Engineering Business Cards that Wow

January 11th, 2012Posted by 

All businesses aim to make a lasting impression. Engineering firms are no exception, although a creative business card is rare in this field. This is a business card for the Canadian firm, Helix. As you can see, it seems very strange at first glance. For one, it is transparent blue. In addition, though, there seems […]

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January 04 2012

LEED Certification & Sustainability at the University of South Florida

January 4th, 2012Posted by 

The University of South Florida (USF) is a university system in the Tampa Bay area. The main campus, located in Tampa, ranks as the 9th largest university in the country. In 2005, a class from the MBA Sustainable Business track did a sustainability audit for a class project, which caught the attention of administrators. Since […]

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December 17 2011

Happy Holidays from Global Site Plans and The Grid: A Special Gift for You

December 17th, 2011Posted by 

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year from Global Site Plans and The Grid. We had an incredible 2011 and we are extremely happy that we are able to share our successes with you. Global Site Plans continues to bring clients superior services and we look forward to the challenges of another year, while serving the fields […]

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December 05 2011

Reconstruction of Montreal’s Turcot Interchange and its Impacts

December 5th, 2011Posted by 

The Turcot Interchange is a major highway junction in Montreal, connecting the north-south Autoroute 15 and the east-west Autoroute 20/720.  The elevated interchange accommodates about 280,000 vehicles a day.  It is located near several working-class neighbourhoods, and is next to a rail-yard as well as the Saint-Jacques Escarpment.  Hastily constructed in 1966-67 in time for […]

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November 29 2011

Iconoclastic Building Materials

November 29th, 2011Posted by 

Most readers at Global Site Plans are familiar with structures made of concrete, wood and steel. These are the common  construction materials for the vast majority of the buildings people inhabit and experience. However, have you ever seen a structure made out of paper? Or what about water? Many architects and engineers around the world […]

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November 15 2011

Tenement Fishing in Istanbul and New York City, Fact or Fiction?

November 15th, 2011Posted by 

Less about urban planning and more about the  forgotten interstitial margins created by architecture, this article links scattered reports about fishing in basements beneath New York City with the cisterns of Istanbul, the home of Global Site Plans’ principal, Renée van Staveren. Istanbul is home to several hundred ancient cisterns that, when built during the […]

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November 10 2011

IntelliStreets: Lighting the Way for Sustainable Cities

November 10th, 2011Posted by 

Fall 2011, independently organized TEDxDetroit assembled an impressive line-up of Michigan entrepreneurs to share their Big Ideas with Detroit’s active social network.  The focus of the day was sustainability: responsible business, exceptional education, strong communities, and innovative technologies.   So, what’s the Big Idea for cities? Intelligent Streets. The IntelliStreets name demonstrates the importance of branding […]

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October 20 2011

Urban Planning Conferences You Must Attend: January – June 2012

October 20th, 2011Posted by 

Many of the bloggers at Global Site Plans continue to learn about urban planning and urban design long after they finish formal schooling. One of the most interesting ways to go beyond standard classroom education is by attending any of the multitudes of conferences that are presented by colleges, research facilities, and companies each year. […]

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October 06 2011

Lingotto Fiat: Creative Reuse of Futurist Industrial Structures

October 6th, 2011Posted by 

While many influential architecture firms, like Bjarke Ingels Group, are attempting to bridge the gap between avant-garde and practical, nearly one hundred years ago, the retro-futuristic Lingotto Fiat Factory in Turin, Italy set the precedent with its combination of innovative form with sensible organization. The Lingotto Fiat Factory is regarded as the first built example of […]

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September 08 2011

The Metabolist Movement: Adaptable Super Structures

September 8th, 2011Posted by 

In the late 1950’s, influenced both by developments in contemporary architecture and the technological advances of the space race, a small group of Japanese designers began to produce works under the banner “The Metabolists.” In a post WWII Japan, where many of the cities and traditional structures had been reduced to rubble by bombs, these […]

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August 25 2011

Car Free Towns and Cities Around the World

August 25th, 2011Posted by 

In a previous blog, I wrote about the car-free suburb in Vauban, Germany. However, whether by intentional design or chance circumstances, quite a few other cities around the world continue to operate without automobile usage. Here is a selection of some of the more idiosyncratic car-free towns and cities around the world. Supai, Arizona is […]

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August 15 2011

How You Can Live Without Paying a Utility Bill

August 15th, 2011Posted by 

The average monthly residential utility bill in America is $104.52. Per year, this is $1,254.24 per residence. For the country (approx. 125 million), this adds up to $156,780,000,000. This is the amount that could be saved if the grid was totally sustainable. However, because of a spotty electrical grid, substantial energy losses through transmission, and […]

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August 12 2011

Expanding California’s State Water Project to the Nation: Avoiding Water Shortages Nationwide

August 12th, 2011Posted by 

Sidewalks exploding, train tracks buckling, foundations cracking – Is it the End? No, just a really bad drought in Texas. Drought: Standard for North America In Texas, we’ve been recording weather since 1895. If you’re looking at that history, you only have the Dust Bowl of the 30s, the decade-long dry spell of the 40s-50s, […]

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August 08 2011

Contributing Blogger Internship: Architecture, Engineering, Landscape Architecture, Urban Planning

August 8th, 2011Posted by 

Global Site Plans is offering a 1-year internship opportunity for contributing bloggers for topics related to architecture, engineering, landscape architecture, urban planning, urban design, sustainable design, and sustainability. If you are a student with a passion and talent for writing about any of the aforementioned topics, then Global Site Plans wants you as a contributing […]

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July 28 2011

Manifesto Architecture’s Wall Climbing Bicycle Rack: Seoul 2010 Cycle Design Competition

July 28th, 2011Posted by 

Manifesto Architecture’s entry to the Seoul 2010 Cycle Design Competition for a rotating vertical bicycle hanger has generated a lot of conversation about form vs. functionality. In many cities bicycles clog up all available sidewalk space and overrun traditional bicycle racks.  The Bike Hanger attempts to solve these problems with an innovative new approach. The […]

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July 14 2011

Charcoal Press Design in the Democratic Republic of Congo: Safety for Women and Environmental Conservation

July 14th, 2011Posted by 

Environmental concerns come secondary to human needs in war ravaged countries. However, in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo a new project is being developed that marries social action with environmental conservation to provide women with an alternative fuel source, in an area where war has made the simple act of cooking a meal a potentially […]

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