The French Quarter in New Orleans

April 30th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Living, Working, Building

Bourbon Street © flickr.com - Lars Plougmann/cc-by-sa-2.0

Bourbon Street © flickr.com – Lars Plougmann/cc-by-sa-2.0

The French Quarter, also known as the Vieux Carré or the Vieux Carre Historic District, is the oldest section of the city of New Orleans. After New Orleans (La Nouvelle-Orléans in French) was founded in 1718 by Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne de Bienville, it developed around the Vieux Carré (“Old Square” in English), a central square. The district is more commonly called the French Quarter today, or simply “the Quarter,” related to changes in the city with American immigration after the Louisiana Purchase. Most of the extant historical buildings were constructed in either the late 18th century, during the city’s period of Spanish rule, or during the first half of the 19th century, after U.S. annexation and statehood. The district as a whole has been designated as a National Historic Landmark, with numerous contributing buildings that are separately deemed significant (buildings and architecture of New Orleans). It is both a prime tourist destination and attractive for local resident (4,000 are living permanently in the quarter). Katrina flood damage was relatively light in the Quarter as compared with other areas of the city and the greater region.   read more…

Theme Week Amsterdam – The Rembrandt Square

April 23rd, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Living, Working, Building

© flickr.com - Minke Wagenaar/cc-by-sa-2.0

© flickr.com – Minke Wagenaar/cc-by-sa-2.0

Rembrandtplein (Rembrandt Square) is a major square in central Amsterdam, named after the famous painter Rembrandt van Rijn who owned a house nearby from 1639 to 1656, todays Rembrandt House Museum. By the early twentieth century, the square developed into a centre for nightlife drawing artists, young people and laborers. To serve these visitors, several hotels, cafés and entertainment venues opened in the adjoining streets. The area continues to be popular with residents and tourists. Thorbeckeplein, named after politician Johan Rudolf Thorbecke (1798–1872), is adjacent to the south, and leads to Herengracht. Tram lines 4, 9 and 14 operate on Regulierbreestraat and connect Rembrandtplein to the Stopera, northwest across the Blauwbrug (Blue Bridge) on the Amstel River, Dam Square to the northeast, and Amsterdam Centraal railway station.   read more…

Palm Islands in Dubai

January 6th, 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Dubai, General, Living, Working, Building

Palm Jumeirah, The Universe, The World and Palm Deira © Tobias Karlhuber

Palm Jumeirah, The Universe, The World and Palm Deira © Tobias Karlhuber

Palm Islands are three artificial islands, Palm Jumeirah, Deira Island and Palm Jebel Ali, on the coast of Dubai. As of November 2014, only Palm Jumeirah has been completed. This island takes the form of a palm tree, topped by a crescent. After completion, Palm Jebel Ali will take a similar shape; each island will be host to a large number of residential, leisure and entertainment centers and will add a total of 520 kilometers of non-public beaches to the city of Dubai. The creation of the Palm Islands began in June 2001. Land reclamation began shortly after the announcement. Palm Jumeirah was built entirely from sand and rocks (no concrete or steel was used to build the island). This was done in accordance with the order of the Prince of Dubai, who came up with the idea for the Palm Islands, as well as their design. The primary objective for the construction of the Palm Islands was to create a major tourist destination in Dubai to compensate for a decrease in revenue from oil as oil reserves in the Persian Gulf depleted. The Palm Jumeirah has a number of hotels, resorts, and hotel residences, among them Atlantis. Other artificial islands in Dubai are The World, Dubai Waterfront and Jumeirah Islands.   read more…

Business Bay in Dubai

April 8th, 2016 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Architecture, Dubai, General, Intelligent Buildings, Living, Working, Building

Downtown Burj Dubai and Business Bay, seen from Safa Park © Robert Luxemburg

Downtown Burj Dubai and Business Bay, seen from Safa Park © Robert Luxemburg

Business Bay is a central business district under construction in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. The project features numerous skyscrapers located in an area where Dubai Creek will be dredged and extended. Business Bay will have upwards of 240 buildings, comprising commercial and residential developments. The infrastructure of Business Bay has been completed in 2008, and the entire development is expected to be completed between 2012-2015. Business Bay is part of the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashed Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister, Minister of Defence, and Ruler of Dubai. Business Bay will be a new ‘city’ within the city of Dubai and is being built as a commercial, residential and business cluster along a new extension of Dubai Creek extending from Ras Al Khor to Sheikh Zayed Road. Covering an area of 64,000,000 square feet (5,900,000 m2), once completed it will comprise office and residential towers set in landscaped gardens with a network of roads, pathways and canals. It will become the region’s business capital as well as a freehold city. There will be over 230 towers in the Business Bay district.   read more…

Theme Week Abu Dhabi – Masdar City

March 23rd, 2016 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Architecture, Design & Products, Energy, Environment, Building Automation, Green Buildings, Green Technologies, Living, Working, Building, Materials, Sustainability, Universities, Colleges, Academies

© fosterandpartners.com

© fosterandpartners.com

Masdar City is a planned city project in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. Its core is being built by Masdar, a subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company, with the majority of seed capital provided by the Government of Abu Dhabi. Designed by the British architectural firm Foster and Partners, the city relies on solar energy and other renewable energy sources. Masdar City is being constructed 17 kilometres (11 mi) east-south-east of the city of Abu Dhabi, right beside Abu Dhabi International Airport. Masdar City will host the headquarters of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The city is designed to be a hub for cleantech companies. Its first tenant is the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, which has been operating in the city since it moved into its campus in September 2010.   read more…

King Abdullah Economic City in Saudi Arabia

September 23rd, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Green Buildings, Green Technologies, Intelligent Buildings, Living, Working, Building

Overview @ kaec.net

Overview @ kaec.net

King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) is a megaproject announced in 2005 by Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the then king of Saudi Arabia. With a total development area of 173 km² (66.8 sq mi), the city is located along the coast of the Red Sea, around 100 km north of Jeddah, the commercial hub of the kingdom, the city will also be approximately an hour and 20 minutes away from the holy Islamic city of Mecca and 3 hours from Medina by car and an hour away of all Middle Eastern capital cities by plane. The total cost of the city is $86 billion (around SR 207 billion), with the project being built by the Tadawul-listed company Emaar Properties, a Dubai-based public joint stock company and one of the world’s largest real estate companies, and SAGIA (Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority) which is the main facilitator of the project. The city is divided into six main components: Industrial Zone, Sea Port, Residential Areas, Sea Resort, Educational Zone, and a Central Business District (CBD) which includes the Financial Island.   read more…

Songdo International Business District in South Korea

September 2nd, 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Green Buildings, Green Technologies, Intelligent Buildings, Living, Working, Building

Songdo International City © Swlee8851/cc-by-sa-3.0

Songdo International City © Swlee8851/cc-by-sa-3.0

Songdo International Business District (Songdo IBD) is a new smart city or “ubiquitous city” built from scratch on 600 hectares (1,500 acres) of reclaimed land along Incheon‘s waterfront, 65 kilometres (40 mi) southwest of Seoul, South Korea and connected to Incheon International Airport by a 12.3-kilometre (7.6 mi) reinforced concrete highway bridge, called Incheon Bridge. Along with Yeongjongdo and Cheongna, it is part of the Incheon Free Economic Zone. The Songdo International Business District will feature the Northeast Asia Trade Tower and the Incheon Tower. Schools, hospitals, apartments, office buildings and cultural amenities are to be built in the district. Replicas of architectural hallmarks, including New York City’s Central Park and Venice’s waterways, will also be incorporated. This 10-year development project is estimated to cost in excess of $40 billion, making it one of the most expensive development projects ever undertaken.   read more…

Bauhaus Dessau

June 25th, 2014 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Intelligent Buildings, Living, Working, Building, Museums, Exhibitions, UNESCO World Heritage, Universities, Colleges, Academies

© Lelikron/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Lelikron/cc-by-sa-3.0

Staatliches Bauhaus, commonly known simply as Bauhaus, was an art school in Germany that combined crafts and the fine arts, and was famous for the approach to design that it publicized and taught. It operated from 1919 to 1933. At that time the German term Bauhaus – literally “house of construction” – was understood as meaning “School of Building”.   read more…

The European Garden Heritage Network

April 5th, 2014 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: European Union, General, Living, Working, Building, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

Dyck Castle © Klaus Littmann/cc-by-sa-3.0

Dyck Castle © Klaus Littmann/cc-by-sa-3.0

The European Garden Heritage Network is a nonprofit organization established in 2003 within the EU-Programme INTERREG IIIB NWE to foster transnational co-operation in regional development and cultural heritage. It brings together garden experts, government services, foundations, and tourism agencies to preserve, develop, and promote gardens of historic interest within northwestern Europe.   read more…

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