Ground is Broken on Mexico City’s Tallest Residential Tower (Bora Residential Tower by Zaha Hadid Architects)

Construction has begun on a tower in Mexico City’s Santa Fe district, characterized by its tapered form, and the fact that it will be the city’s tallest residential building (50-storeys). Last week, our friends at Zaha Hadid Architects broke ground on the Bora Residential Tower, which, when completed, will be the city’s tallest residential building, standing more than 50 storeys. Commissioned in 2015 by Nemesis Capital, the Bora Residential Tower was one Zaha Hadid’s last projects before her death last year. The tower is actually comprised of six smaller towers, bundled around a core; and, at its base, it flares outward in a series of circuitous canopies, beneath which are amenities, restaurants, and retail volumes. The canopies are aesthetically pleasing and also provide the structure with lateral stability (a crucial feature in the event of an earthquake and a brilliant melding of form and function).

One Willoughby Square, FXFOWLE’s 500-foot office tower in Downtown Brooklyn

FXFOWLE have released renderings for their 495′ office tower at One Willoughby Square (Downtown Brooklyn). JEMB Realty, developers of the project have finalized a deal with the city for the 3,132 SqFt lots. Originally their plans were to construct a 65-storey/700′ condo (with the help of our friends at KPF), but in order to gain air rights from NYCEDC they had to settle for an office complex by our friends at FXFOWLE. Says Dan Kaplan, FXFOWLE partner, the tower will be rooted in what he thinks are the “most classical New York-type buildings.” However, notably, the building will not have a glass curtain facade, and office floor plans with be open with few columns and obstructions. The building will also house a 300-seat school, as well as several “super-floors” which will feature 18′ ceilings, terraces, and loggias.

OMA Redesigns Rijnstraat 8 (The Hague)

The Rijnstraat 8 is a transformed government office building in The Hague. Our friends at OMA‘s rejigging of the nearly 1M SqFt structure marks the first large-scale implementation of an initiative of the government of the Netherlands to consolidate and reduce the overall biofootprint of office space. Unsurprisingly, the Rijnstraat 8 is home to the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, among others. Led by OMA partner Ellen van Loon, the design is based around flexible and minimal spaces: a gigantic walkway spans the entire building connecting an array of offices with open plans. It also incorporates a variety of sustainability measures, including triple-glazing, solar panels, LED’s, and heat and cold storage; and, while 20% of the original structure was demolished, 100% was repurposed by OMA for the project.

DDG Partners’ elongated brickwork tower (UES)

Our friends at DDG Partners have undertaken a bold and daring architectural experiment in this grey brick residential tower, which plays intelligently with the typologies of the Art Deco architectural style, to be assembled in Carnegie Hill, Upper East Side, Manhattan. In addition to eye-catching vaulted balconies with brass frames, the building will be made of nearly 600,000 uniquely textured, elongated Kolumba bricks. The building will stand 50-storeys and contain 48 residences, of which a key feature will be vaulted ceilings rising as high as 14 feet. The interiors will also reflect the predominating pre-war aesthetic, and the bathrooms will abound in silver travertine.

IA Interior Architects’ Toronto Offices for Scotiabank

IA Interior Architects‘ Toronto office, in collaboration with our friends at their New York office, have completed the new Toronto offices of Scotiabank, a Canadian multinational bank and financial services firm. Offices for “The Digital Factory” as it is now known were designed by IA with a view towards fomenting productivity among staff, and enticing tech-savvy professionals to join their ranks. After observing that the staff generally gathered in an unofficially designated central area to collaborate and present work, IA installed a rotunda 32’ in diameter, to function as a planned gathering space. Also notable here is the use of color and lights: a wall of LED panels stream live company metrics including customer feedback; bright colors distinguish six neighborhoods to help make the immense interior easier to navigate: “art,” “storytelling,” “architecture,” “gaming,” “music,” and “film.”

Dattner Architects brings 274-unit affordable building to East New York

The 274-unit Chestnut Commons built-community/development will be one of the first affordable housing complexes to rise in East New York, Brooklyn, following its recent rezoning; the location is a large vacant lot bounded by Dinsmore Place, Chestnut Street, and Atlantic Avenue. Brought to you by our friends at Dattner Architects, the Commons will be built to passive house standards and unlike most affordable housing developments covered in articles flagged up in this briefing, it will actually serve low-income New Yorkers with 29% of units set aside for families making up to $26K/y. The building will comprise studio apartments, 1-, 2-, and 3-bedrooms, and will also have space for community organizations: a satellite campus for CUNY Kingsborough Community College, a new performing arts center by ARTS East New York, a food manufacturing incubator, and a social services center.

Morris Adjmi Architects’ condo tower replaces Nomad parish-house

Two years since the parish house of the Madison Avenue Baptist Church was razed to make way for a Morris Adjmi-designed condo tower, extensive renderings of which have been made available to the New York Times and now your eyes. 30E31 will be the tallest building designed by our friends at Morris Adjmi Architects in the City of New York. Adjimi drew inspiration from both modernist skyscrapers of the city and the Gothic architecture of nearby churches: a minimalist design at the base of the façade which gives way to a zigzagging design closer to the top, where a duplex penthouse boasts zigzagging windows. Finishes and amenities worth mentioning: white oak flooring, and Calacatta marble bathrooms; a private communal dining room, and a communal garden.

Snøhetta Reveals Plans for Underwater Restaurant

Our friends at Snøhetta’s “Under” will actually be more than just a restaurant: when not in use, it will host scientists from Norwegian research centers devoted to behaviorally training wild fish with sound signals in order to create and maintain optimal conditions on the seabed for these animals to thrive in close proximity to the restaurant. Which is useful because there they will be eaten: the restaurant will offer locally sourced seafood prepared under the direction of Danish chef Nicolai Ellitsgaard Pedersen. “Under” will even provide a habitat for shellfish: the structure itself will be a concrete shell, coarse enough on its exterior to encourage mussels to lodge themselves in its surface. The interiors will feature a palette of concrete and dark oak evocative of the structure’s surrounding natural environment. “Under” will feature three levels; its entrance is adjacent to a tidepool; it descends sixteen feet under the North Sea. And boasts a 36’x13’ acrylic window with views of the seabed as it changes with the seasons.