Unused rooftop space transformed into stunning sustainable farm

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The Thammasat University Rooftop Farm measures roughly 236,800 sq ft (22,000 sq m), making it the largest organic rooftop farm in Asia

The Thammasat University Rooftop Farm (or TURF), by Landprocess, puts an abandoned rooftop area belonging to Thammasat University’s Rangsit Campus to fine use as an organic farm. The project incorporates solar power and rainwater collection, and is used to teach sustainable farming techniques.

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World’s tallest prefab skyscrapers will rise in Singapore — but they’re being built in Malaysia

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A pair of skyscrapers are set to become the tallest prefabricated buildings in the world.

And while the two 192-meter-tall (630 feet) towers will rise in densely populated Singapore, large parts of the structures are being built over the border in Malaysia.

The residential project, named Avenue South Residences, will see 988 apartments formed from almost 3,000 vertically stacked “modules.” The firm behind the project, ADDP Architects, says the building method, known as Prefabricated Prefinished Volumetric Construction (PPVC), is less labor-intensive and can help reduce waste and noise pollution.

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Goodbye to open office spaces? How experts are rethinking the workplace.

 

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The coronavirus pandemic is exacerbating workers’ worries about returning to jobs in these often debated floor plans.

DISTRACTING, INTRUSIVE, AND now a potential health hazard. The list of grievances against crowded open office floor plans is mounting, and as state officials mull how to safely reopen offices shuttered by the coronavirus, some people are wondering whether the design is on its way out the door.

“Before [the coronavirus outbreak], I requested to move to a corner desk to kind of get away from the coworkers who were more social and talkative,” says Ayla Larick, an employee at a Texas insurance broker. Larick is set to return to her office on May 1, as Texas reopens non-essential businesses, though her asthma puts her at heightened risk for COVID-19 complications, and she’s requested an extension to work remotely.

“I am a little nervous about returning, only because I’m less than six feet away from three other people the entire time I’m working on my computer,” she says.

Most companies are only just beginning to think about how they might change their corporate workspaces, with some experts saying the open floor plan could be redone with better consideration for personal space and stricter cleaning schedules. Others, however, say the pandemic is the final straw for the open office.

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10 ways COVID-19 could change office design

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COVID-19 has upended working life, changing how and where people do their jobs.

 Millions of people in China have returned to work, and other countries are considering easing lockdowns in phases.

Organizations should plan how to adapt offices to comply with social distancing rules.

Real estate company Cushman & Wakefield has designed an office where workers can keep six feet apart.

But with governments and companies around the world looking to ease lockdowns, minimizing virus transmission at work is now at the top of many organizations’ agendas.

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The visual trends that will define 2020

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The creative industries help to define the look of an era. As much as architecture and literature have an enormous impact, the style and flavour of a decade is primarily decided by the creatives. While that’s a privilege, it is also a responsibility that means creatives must be the ones to constantly push themselves to try new things. After all, nothing’s worse than stagnation.

That’s especially true in the media and marketing world. Too often brands find themselves playing catch-up with the trends being created for younger audiences, instead of working with them collaboratively. That risks alienating savvy millennial and Generation Z consumers, who recognise when they’re being sold to.

In order for marketers and creatives to stay abreast of visual trends,The Drum, in conversation with Adobe Stock and Dentsu in their latest webinar, will draw from Adobe’s 2020 Creative Trends report and explore some of the most important visual trends and sub trends for the year.

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These luxury prefabs are going fully off-grid

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Dvele homes will now come with a new thermal enevelop, solar power, and a backup battery system

High-end prefab home builder Dvele just got a little more high-tech—and eco-conscious. The San Diego-based company, which is known for its luxury prefab designs, announced this week that it would start exclusively building fully self-powered homes going forward.

Since its founding in 2017, Dvele has branded itself as a sustainable option in the prefab space, but its new initiative takes it a step further with homes that run entirely on solar power and stored energy. Dvele’s models are similar to other eco-minded prefab homes in that a major focus is to limit the amount of wasted energy produced in the first place.

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From privacy booths to smart parking garages: These photos show what offices of the future will look like

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Technology has dramatically changed where, when and how people work. Another contributing factor that isn’t as sexy but is arguably just as influential for the working world: the rising price of commercial real estate.

As the cost of traditional 10- to 15-year office leases has ticked up nationwide, corporate tenants who want to be able to scale quickly are turning to shorter and less costly 1- to 5-year leases where they can add (or reduce) square footage at a much faster pace. As a result, flexible and co-working spaces are now the fastest-growing type of office space in commercial real estate. They currently comprise less than 5% of the market and are expected to make up 30% by 2030, according to real-estate company JLL.

CNBC Make It spoke with experts in the office design space for what workers can expect in 2020 and beyond.

NOTE: For more information about Colony Workspace at the DaVinci Institute in Westminster, Colorado, please go to ColonyWorkspace.com.

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Construction completed on largest 3D-printed building in the world

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Largest 3D-printed municipality building in Dubai

At 31 feet tall and 6,900 square feet, a new building in Dubai is the largest 3D-printed building in the world — and the first two-story structure of its kind.

The most impressive part of the project? U.S. company Apis Cor built the structure using only three workers and one printer.

Proving that the printer could handle a harsh environment, Apis Cor did the printing outdoors where there was no temperature or humidity control.

However, there was a logistical issue the printer did have to tackle: The square foot area of the building was larger than the printing area of the stationary machine. To solve this technological obstacle, a crane moved the 3D printer around the site.

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‘Part-science lab, part-playground’: how kids made museums take fun seriously

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From London to California, architects are helping museums provide interactive learning experiences that can’t be found on screen

State of play: TapeScape, an interactive art installation built in collaboration with artist Eric Lennartson at Brooklyn Children’s Museum.

Last year, the Hoxton-based architecture practice AOC set up the Open Studio at the V&A Museum of Childhood in nearby Bethnal Green, east London. The 147-year-old institution was set to be renovated and initial consultation of local schoolchildren had found that they wanted the space turned into the “most joyful museum in the world”. AOC set up the Open Studio to find out how this could be done. It was a test-lab of forums and workshops for children and families, a space where visitors were encouraged to hold objects from the V&A’s collection and answer questions such as: “What is a museum?”

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Scientists bring concrete to life & it might be the future of construction

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Today in weird news we didn’t expect to read: Researchers in Colorado have produced Franken-concrete. It’s alive, and it may be the future of green buildings.

 Concrete is, quite literally, all around us. It, or versions of it, has been used since 1300 B.C., meaning even a trip to Roman ruins is surrounded by concrete. In the last century, the technology of concrete hasn’t changed, but this new breakthrough has changed that.

The second most consumed material on earth, the production and use of concrete is responsible for 6% of global CO2 emissions—no small thing. Using bacteria, sand, and a hydrogel, the researchers found a way to produce a material that mimics the strength of concrete-based mortar.

How does it work? The power of the bacteria helps to “biomineralize the scaffold, so it actually is really green. It looks like a Frankenstein-type material,” said study senior author Wil Srubar, Ph.D. “That’s exactly what we’re trying to create–something that stays alive.”

And if you thought the idea of living concrete was weird enough, hold on tight: It’s about to get weirder. The material can reproduce, with a little help. If researchers split a brick of the material in half, the bacteria grows the pieces into two complete bricks. They found that this works to end up with eight bricks from the original one in three “generations.”

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5 bold urban design projects that made cities more fun, clean, and accessible in 2019

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Cities can get rid of cars—and build urban ski slopes.

You may think the only changes to cities have been negative ones, and yes, urban areas have certainly seen increased traffic and heightened housing problems, but plenty of places have also debuted new features that aim to make a positive impact. Whether adapting to climate change, trying to be more inclusive to underserved populations, or updating their infrastructure with new technology, cities around the world are serving as laboratories to test bold ideas.

Here’s a look at some of the most fun and interesting urban innovations of 2019, proving that some cities are already in the future and are using their corners of the world to make our planet a little bit better.

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Porous polymer coatings dynamically control light and heat

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The porous polymer coatings, which switch from white to transparent when wetted, can be put into plastic enclosures to make panels that control light and temperatures of buildings. Credit: Jyotirmoy Mandal/Columbia Engineering

Buildings devote more than 30% of their energy use to heating, cooling, and lighting systems. Passive designs such as cool roof paints have gone a long way toward reducing this usage, and its impact on the environment and climate, but they have one key limitation—they are usually static, and thus not responsive to daily or seasonal changes.

Columbia Engineering researchers have developed porous polymer coatings (PPCs) that enable inexpensive and scalable ways to control light and heat in buildings. They took advantage of the optical switchability of PPCs in the solar wavelengths to regulate solar heating and daylighting, and extended the concept to thermal infrared wavelengths to modulate heat radiated by objects. Their work is published on October 21, 2019 by Joule.

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