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Innovation in architecture has long focused on efficiency, such as work on a headquarters project while at SOM. Here Catia (Digital Project), a tool traditionally used in the automotive industry was used by the design team to realize complex geometry and to test its environmental performance. AEKI and the eflippr platform is about disruptive innovation, challenging the traditional client, designer relationship only now possible through information technology and importantly necessary in blindingly fast economy.
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Work done with BMW Designworks USA while at Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture envisioning communication between motive and stationary power and information services.
Enabling freedom of mobility, play and most importantly individuality is at the very core of what makes a car, a car and cuts to the core of the dialogue captured here on AEKI.
Logo and Funding T-Shirt Design Competition!
Here’s your chance to get a cut of the action. In preparation of our Kickstarter launch we’d like to offer a t-shirt for our supporters. Not just any shirt, but a really killer looking shirt. The theme of the shirt is “home is where the phone is” but creative license is totally welcome. Winner takes home $500 if we get our funding and a chance for a larger contract to design the entire “brand” image.
Where you shop has as much to do with status as what you’re shopping for. Located in heart of Kuwait City, Al Hamra Tower designed by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill anchors a commercial complex including high-end shopping with theaters. Winner of a number of design awards the building is stunning and was a pleasure to be a part of, but what of the forecasted $327 billion of online, location indifferent, sales by 2016 in the United States alone?
The philosophy behind AEKI is architecture and energy with knowledge of the individual. The individual is fast, mobile and increasingly global. This demands a new kind of architecture from designers and retail innovations. AEKI is a discussion about that new kind of architecture, one bespoke to the individual whilst eflippr is a platform that begins to address this emergent form of retail.
The skyscraper index, a concept put forth by Andrew Lawrence in 1999 and supported by Mark Thornton 2005, is a theory that the completion date of skyscrapers foretell the coming of recessions. It’s a logical assertion considering the massive financing required to undertake these projects and their long completion cycles, thus coinciding nicely with boom/bust cycles. What is important is as much the publicized height, as it is the speed of the cycle. What was 60 long years shrank to 40, then 20 then less a decade to the point we’re at today, money and people so fast the industry simply cannot keep up.
We need a new kind of architecture. One that is tailored around the mobile individual, lifestyle design that can be taken anywhere in the world. AEKI presents a dialogue on this dramatic departure from traditional architecture, literally flipping the script on the current approach to building design and construction through the eflippr platform. Home is where the phone is.
Architecture is about making a statement. It is structural poetry that forms a dialogue with the surrounding environment sometimes in protest, other times in harmony. In 2006 with the design of the Pearl River Tower by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill we demonstrated how the latter could be expanded with the inclusion of wind turbines and a double skin facade. The result was an incredibly efficient building, an exemplar of future building energy performance and a showcase for China’s commitment to sustainability.
AEKI stands for architecture and energy with knowledge of the individual. It is elegance in action, a dialogue on lifestyle design built on strength and poetry, design as navigation through chaos made possible by that very chaos. It is simplicity that should be found anywhere but almost nowhere. In this spirit it is an embodiment of the philosophy that formed Pearl River Tower, personalized to the individual.
How AEKI will support the development, promote and filter bespoke, beautiful lifestyle solutions for the mobile individual is demonstrated visually on a future post.
In 2008 we proved that a large-scale mixed use commercial office building could generate more energy than it consumed. The seven-story, 134,662 square-meter Masdar Headquarters designed by Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture featured nearly 20,000 square meters (more than 4 football fields) of photovoltaics to offset an incredibly efficient building. But what about in dense urban areas where buildings are overshadowed by yet taller ones?
As an energy and carbon activity tracking and offsetting platform, eflippr goes well beyond associating energy credits to the building, linking directly to an individual urban creative’s profile. It’s simple, but for now, it’s secret.
The impetus for AEKI and the eflippr platform is speed, mobility and elegance. Last year I was fortunate enough to be involved in Project Haiti, a philanthropic effort to develop a LEED platinum adoption facility in a resilient country, still desperate for support. I learn something on every project, but this was different, a soul searching question of process not product was the result of this heavy tour.
Architecture is traditionally a game of space and material: location, square footage, height. The action is acquisition, fame as a designer, space as an investor, view as the tenant or in this case simply a place to call home for children in need. But acquisition is static, architecture is static, and with no time component the industry simply isn’t designed to respond with the immediacy necessary. The alternative, mass fabrication might fulfill a basic need but begs the question isn’t there another, better way?
There always is and in a world where mobility is the key to success, AEKI as a dialogue on lifestyle design built on strength and poetry moves towards its discovery. The astounding realization is that the speed necessary to respond to a humanitarian crisis is the very same speed necessary to keep up with a jetsetting hyper-global generation. The way to deliver that speed is to flip the script and connect designer and user directly.
I do hope you choose to follow us and our objective to support the development, promote and filter bespoke, beautiful lifestyle solutions. More will come as the eflippr engine is developed openly and transparently along side AEKI. These questions are bigger than us, your input is more than welcome, its necessary.
AEKI and the eflipper platform interface with comprehensive urban energy and sustainability action plans such as the Chicago decarbonization plan developed while at Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture.