Seamless for Danish-Designed Houses, and Other News

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An ADU deigned by Norm Architects, Abodu, and Dwell Magazine

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Seamless for Danish-Designed Houses

Riding the recent wave of interest in ADUs (accessory dwelling units), Dwell magazine has teamed up with Norm Architects and California company Abodu to produce prefab one-bedroom houses. They’re built in a factory and craned into your backyard in a process the collaborators say takes as little as six months.

The aesthetic is California-meets-Copenhagen but veers away from played-out tropes, says Dwell Editor-in-Chief William Hanley. “I’m so tired of blandinavian boxes. What I’ve always liked about Norm Architects is that even though the Copenhagen firm has a very spare, minimal, quiet style, there’s also a sense of play and personality happening.”     

Outfitted with sustainably harvested cedar cladding, Bosch kitchen appliances, and a 12-foot bifold glass wall by NanaWall for open-air living, the one-bedroom structures are designed to be versatile—equally suitable as a guest bungalow or home office as a fitness studio. The $390K starting price covers everything including permitting and installing a foundation. In launch markets with restrictive building codes—Los Angeles, the Bay Area, and Seattle—the 540-square-foot Dwell House’s low-hassle installation, multi-use functionality, and sharp aesthetics make it adaptable to a spectrum of architectural styles, from mission revivals to modern new-builds. “We’ve always covered prefab construction and championed ADUs,” Hanley says. “In a way, we’re putting our money where our mouth is and helping make them a reality.” —Nate Storey

One Ladybird Lake and 901 South Congress in Austin. Image courtesy Related Companies

South Austin will receive two new office buildings developed by Related Companies.

“The ever-changing skyline of Texas’ eccentric state capital is getting another pair of new additions after Hudson Yards developer Related Companies announced plans this month for two new separate Austin office buildings designed by Gensler and KPF. Related says both projects will be located in South Austin and are slated to be completed in 2024 and 2025 respectively. The announcement comes on the heels of last week’s news that KPF has been selected as the designer of what will eventually surmount I.M. Pei’s J.P. Morgan Chase Tower in Houston for the title of the state’s tallest building.” [H/T Archinect]

After backlash, Pioneer Works backs out of supporting a new development in Queens.  

“In July, Hyperallergic reported that hundreds of concerned artists and community members voiced opposition to a new luxury development in the Queens neighborhood of Astoria. Innovation QNS, a $2 billion project aiming to erect eight new buildings on the five blocks around Kaufman Astoria Studios and the Museum of the Moving Image, received initial endorsements from both institutions as well as from the Brooklyn arts center Pioneer Works. In the months since, Pioneer Works quietly backed out of the project.” [H/T Hyperallergic]

Thanks to a new internal structure, the iPhone 14 is the most repairable model in years.

“The iPhone 14, which went on sale last week, is the most repairable iPhone since the iPhone 7, which came out in 2016, repair advocate and tools vendor iFixit said in a blog post. Apple has redesigned the internal structure in the iPhone 14 to allow users to remove and replace both the device’s back glass and its screen by removing only two screws, according to the teardown conducted by iFixit. The changes will make it easier for Apple store employees, independent repair shops and end users to replace the phone’s screen, back glass and battery, the most common fixes for most smartphones.” [H/T CNBC]

The Montreal Holocaust Museum designed by KPMB Architects and Daoust Lestage Lizotte Stecker Architecture

“Memory, education, and community” inspire the new Montreal Holocaust Museum.

“The Montreal Holocaust Museum has revealed the design of its new downtown museum with architecture by KPMB Architects and Daoust Lestage Lizotte Stecker Architecture. Selected following an international architectural competition, the winning proposal is ‘based on the pillars of memory, education, and community.’ The building will introduce to Montreal multiple exhibition spaces, classrooms, an auditorium, a memorial garden, and a dedicated survivor testimony room. With construction beginning in the fall of 2023, the museum is expected to open in 2025.” [H/T Designboom]

School districts across the U.S. are using solar energy to cope with budget shortfalls. 

“One school district was able to give pay raises to its teachers as big as 30 percent. Another bought new heating and ventilation systems, all the better to help students and educators breathe easier in these times. The improvements didn’t cost taxpayers a cent, and were paid for by an endlessly renewable source: the sun. As solar energy gains traction across the country, one beneficiary have been schools, particularly those in cash-strapped districts contending with dwindling tax bases. From New Jersey to California, nearly one in 10 K-12 public and private schools across the country were using solar energy by early 2022. That’s twice as many as existed in 2015. The savings in electric bills from schools with solar panels often topped millions in each district, and many have been able to adopt the technology without shouldering any costs up front.” [H/T The New York Times]

A Chinese textile maker’s acquisition spree of luxury brands is starting to unravel.

“Six years ago, a little-known textile maker called Shandong Ruyi Group embarked on a frantic acquisition spree with the goal of becoming China’s version of luxury powerhouse LVMH. Based in the hometown of Confucius, chairman Qiu Yafu spent more than $3 billion snapping up assets from the boulevards of Paris to the heart of London tailoring on Savile Row. He bought French fashion brands Sandro and Maje, as well as heritage UK trenchcoat maker Aquascutum and the maker of Lycra stretchy fabrics. Those big dreams have since unraveled, and Ruyi is at the center of a messy unwinding involving some of the world’s largest financial institutions.” [H/T Bloomberg]

Princess Diana pictured in Alper Yesiltas’s “As If Nothing Happened” project

Today’s attractive distractions:

This AI imagines how celebrities would look if they were still alive.

Brad Pitt debuts his first sculptures in a lakeside Finland museum.

Israeli archaeologists find opium residue in Bronze Age ceramics.

Have you noticed how restaurant menus suddenly seem so simple?

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