Whether or not the term has fallen out of favor, the fact remains: "starchitects" are spawning more high-design boathouses, contemporary pyramids, liquidy condo buildings, and winged transportation hubs than one can hardly keep up with. Below, a map of starchitect-designed projects that have risen (or are rising) in the last year, featuring old friends like Richard Meier and Robert A.M. Stern, as well as swoopitect Zaha Hadid and it-boy Bjarke Ingels. Got more to add? Leave 'em in the comments.Read More
39 Big-Name Projects Transforming Architecture in the USA
Shigeru Ban's Cast Iron House
Surfing on the wake of Tokyo-based architect Shigeru Ban's recent Pritzker win, the developers of NYC's Cast Iron House launched sales for his condo conversion plans, which were approved two years ago. Back then, Ban's rehashing of the 132-year-old cast iron building, which makes for 11 duplexes and two duplex penthouses, was described as "magical" and "breathtaking." And, well, it's gotta be considering the least expensive unit, a three-bedroom, is asking $4.975M.
Zaha Hadid's NYC Condos
Dubbed by Curbed NY as "the most exciting" upcoming project on New York's High Line, Zaha Hadid's imminent condo complex (which looks a bit like rain drops running across the windshield) is her first New York project. NY Mag once described the 11-story structure—slated to house 37 "expansive" residences—as "the delightful Earth home for the weary intergalactic superrich."
Zaha Hadid's COLLINS PARK GARAGE
Down in Miami Beach, Dame Hadid also won a contest to design what surely will be the country's swankiest parking garage. Curbed Miami has renderings aplenty.
Zaha Hadid's One Thousand Museum
Miami will also soon boast Hadid's first skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere, which is expected to break ground this month. It's been described as "a space alien's butt plug," so there's a lot to look forward to.
Bjarke Ingels' W57
Bjarke Ingels' pyramid on New York's 57th Street is finally taking shape, over a year after getting approval. When complete in 2015, the 709-unit rental building will peak at 450 feet.
Bjarke Ingels' Grove at Grand Bay
And, of course, there's Ingels twisty towers for Miami, which has captivated building folk for years with its pair of twisty towers. Grove at Grand Bay broke ground almost exactly a year ago.
Christian de Portzamparc's Fortress of Glassitude
Sobrequet'd as the "Fortress of Glassitude," Christian de Portzamparc's 400 Park Avenue South has been in the works since the early 2000s, though previews were only announced in April. According to Curbed NY, "The 40-story tower looks like a collection of crystals jutting from the ground, which is an appropriately luxurious image since the 363 units will be ultra fancy." It's supposed to be move-in ready by 2015.
CHRISTIAN DE PORTZAMPARC's One57
Curbed NY has spent the year fastidiously following the blockbuster sales, controversies, and strange bylaws of One57. Yes, that's the building where the crane collapsed during Hurricane Sandy—but what's a good starchitecture project without a little calamity?
Jean Nouvel's Tower Verre
For years, Jean Nouvel's planned Tower Verre has lingered in the "unbuilt" and, seemingly, the "never-ever-to-be-built" phases. That is until the project bagged $1B (with a B) in financing last fall. The money comes from a few sources in Asia—the Kwee family, billionaires in Singapore, are investing $300 million in the building, and a group of Asian banks plans to lend another $860 million. Included? 145 luxury condos and three floors of new gallery space for the city's Museum of Modern Art.
Rem Koolhaas' Park Grove
Rem Koolhaas has a smörgåsbord of architectural delights rising in Miami right now, one of which is a three-structure cluster of 20-story buildings. Known as Park Grove, the design has changed quite a lot from Koolhaas' winning competition entry, a forest of skinny towers, though the most current renderings still reveal an ambitious array of curvy white superstructures.
Rem Koolhaas' Plaza at Santa Monica
After causing many in the L.A. development scene to clutch their pearls with its outright refusal of Koolhaas' plans, the city of Santa Monica has since allowed for new alternative designs for "one of its most coveted development sites." New renderings "are set to be released any day now," Curbed LA writes.
Rem Koolhaas' Transbay Block 8
San Francisco developers have tapped Koolhaas to design a 550-foot residential tower on a 42,625-square-foot plot at the city's Transbay Block 8. Included, according to Curbed SF: 740 housing units, about 27 percent of which must be affordable to households making 60 percent of area median income.
Richard Meier's Miami Beach Convention Center
In Miami, Richard Meier is expanding the historic Russell Pancoast-designed Surf Club. Slated: condos with his signature colorless, minimalist slant.
Richard Rogers' 3 World Trade Center
About a year ago the Richard Rogers-designed World Trade Center Tower secured $1.3B in financing by pinning down ad company and media firm GroupM as office tenants. This means the only World Trade Center tower not picking up speed is Norman Foster's tower, which is too bad because it's unambiguously the purdiest.
Herzog and De Meuron's 56 Leonard
Construction for Herzog & de Mueron's crazy, half-played-Jenga tower in NYC's Tribeca neighborhood is now well underway.
Herzog and De Mueron's Perez Art Museum
Perez Art Museum Miami, a hulking project by museum masters Herzog & de Meuron, opened in late 2013 to nigh-universal praise. As Curbed Miami wrote, "this is either because of the excellence of the building's design, the curatorial mastery of the museum's staff, or the intoxicating effects of cruise ship fumes." Want to see more? Curbed Miami has 40 dazzling photos.
Herzog and De Mueron's Jade Signature
When renderings for Herzog and de Mueron's Jade Signature tower for Miami were unleashed, Curbed Miami wrote: "Okay, from some angles the building does appear to be something built in Bal Harbour in the 80s, but Herzog & de Meuron buildings never look their best in renderings." Diplomatic indeed.
Robert A.M. Stern's Central Park Tower
After what Curbed NY describes as a developer "catfight," it seems like Robert A.M. Stern's limestone-clad tower at the southern edge of Central Park is officially a go. It will stand 920 feet high with floor-to-ceiling windows, coffered ceilings, ornate fireplaces, and herringbone floors.
Steven Holl's Columbia Sport Center
When Steven Holl's $30M sports complex for Columbia University opened last year, architects waxed poetic about Campbell Sports Center, which, according to Bloomberg's critic James Russell, "flamboyantly bumps and grinds, showing off its shiny metal stairs that ascend like lightning bolts." New York Times architecture critic Michael Kimmelman called it "a tough, sophisticated and imaginative work of architecture for a devilish site."
Bjarke Ingels' 950 Market
Ingels' west coast megaproject will encompass, according to Curbed SF, a 250-room hotel, 316 residences, a 75,000-square-foot arts complex, and 15,000 square feet of retail.
Frank Gehry's Facebook HQ
It takes a lot of clout and a lot of balls to ask flourish-happy starchitect and controversy-magnet Frank Gehry to design an "anonymous building" that "blends into the neighborhood." Apparently Facebook has enough of both. The company asked Gehry to draw up low-key plans for the company's 433,555-square-foot Facebook West complex in Menlo Park, Calif. Perhaps more surprising? Gehry delivered with aplomb. His renderings for Facebook's up-and-coming facility (above) show a low-slung complex seated under grassy spreads of rooftop park. Wired wrote "there's no question the building will blend in well with its surroundings," and notices how the new design is congruent with Facebook's "hacker ethos, which emphasizes functionality over form."
Frank Gehry's Eisenhower Memorial
So it seems that the now totally drawn out boondoggle that is Gehry's Eisenhower Memorial won't actually happen, but between its "Disneyfied diorama" and "Iron Curtain to Ike," Gehry's "temple to nothingness" has been inexpicably slaughtered and reslaughtered so much in the last year, it seemed a crime to leave it out.
Frank Gehry's Grand Avenue Projet
In January, developers got approval from the Powers That Be in Los Angeles to move forward with Gehry's designs for a multi-use project on downtown's Grand Avenue. It's a step in the right direction, but an actual, real-life building is still super far off. Construction will hopefully begin in early 2015, with the building hopefully up and running by 2018.
Renzo Piano's Academy Museum of Motion Pictures
At the end of this year, work will begin converting the Los Angeles County Museum of Art's May Company building into the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, a space agey project by architects Renzo Piano and Zoltan Pali. Plans for the 1939 building? A giant glass sphere connected by a "five-story glass 'spine'" with "people-moving system of stairs and elevators," as the Academy describes it. Curbed LA breaks down the plans floor-by-floor, this way.
Renzo Piano's Harvard Art Museum
Piano recently completed his Hahvahd (Harvard.) project: the combining of the university's three art museums (one of which is in a protected 1920s Georgian revival building) into one reorganized and upgraded facility.
Renzo Piano's Kimbell Art Museum Expansion
When the Kimbell commissioned Piano to create an expansion for the Fort Worth art museum, they made it clear that they didn't want a knockoff of the main building, but a continuation of the same ambient light conditions, which are considered "the gold standard" for the museum. How did the Italian architect deliver? Piano's pavilion at the Kimbell Art Museum uses motorized louvers to dial in the right amount of natural light for each exhibit. Well-played.
Santiago Calatrava's Transportation Hub
The 9/11 National Memorial Museum may have just opened, the area's soaring, eagle-like transportation hub, designed by Santiago Calatrava, won't open until 2015—150-foot high glass and steel "wings" and all.
Santiago Calatrava's Church of St. Nicholas
Late last year, rumors that Santiago Calatrava was tapped to rebuild NYC's Church of St. Nicholas—which was destroyed in 9/11—were all but confirmed when eight renderings appeared on Calatrava's website. As Curbed NY writes, "Calatrava has taken his inspiration from some of the great churches of Istanbul, including the Hagia Sophia and the Church of the Holy Savior in Chora, with 40 ribs in the dome and stone bands on the church's corners."
Santiago Calatrava's Innovation, Science and Technology Building
This month construction will wrap on Calatrava's Innovation, Science and Technology Building at the Florida Polytechnic University, the newest member of the Florida State University System. Inside the 160,000-square-foot building: classrooms, auditoriums, research and teaching labs, and offices for faculty and academic administrators.
Jeanne Gang's Clark Park Boathouse
Construction on Chicago's new boathouses, by certified genius Jeanne Gang recently wrapped. To glean inspiration for her design, which was commissioned by Chicago's mayor Rahm Emanuel, Gang studied prints of a photographer of the 1800s. Eadweard Muybridge shot stop-motion images that demonstrate in rigid form the movements of rowers. As New Yorker writes: "Her design re-creates the rhythm with structure: the roof undulates like an oar's rise and fall. Because the peaks repeat, so do the clerestory windows."
Jeanne Gang's University 'House Hubs'
About a year ago we got a first look at Gang's new dorms—err "house hubs." Curbed Chicago has the renderings.
Jeanne Gang's Solar Carve
Last month, word got out that Gang's edgy office tower on NYC's High Line will actually, you know, exist. Solar Carve initially, according to Curbed NY, "ran into some roadblocks: namely, community opposition." Anyway, it seems the project is now in the clear, though apparently Gang won't even be finalizing the designs until 2015.
Frank Lloyd Wright's Unrealized Usonian House
In 1939 American architecture overlord Frank Lloyd Wright drafted plans for a single-story house that, like others of his middle class-friendly Usonian House series, boasted a flat roof, small kitchen, overlarge living area, and airy, if anachronistically plain-jane, aesthetic. The house turned out to be one of hundreds of Wright designs never to be realized ... until this year. Florida Southern College built the house, with grand plans to turn it into a gallery and visitors center filled with exhibitions of Wright's work. It's all made of 2,000 concrete blocks and 6,000 colored glass blocks. More photos, this way.
David Adjaye's Museum of African American History and Culture
Slated for a 2015 opening, David Adjaye's Museum of African American History and Culture will sit on DC's National Mall.
Norman Foster's Chelsea Condos
Norman Foster's controversial plans for New York's Public Library may have curled up and died, but his condo development in NYC's West Chelsea is still alive and well. In fact, a few months ago, the developers unleashed interior renderings. The architects describe it as "a very elegant, well-proportioned, quiet building—a very urbane building—it's a building that will mature and it will become a classic over time." Pricing is said to start at $5.75M. The penthouses? Upwards of $35M.
Norman Foster's 50 UN Plaza
Sales officially launched at Foster's 50 UN Plaza in October, confirming the development's, ahem, $100M penthouse.
Faena District by Norman Foster and Rem Koolhaas
Miami Beach's Faena District (currently under construction) includes Norman Foster's Faena House tower, which has just topped off, and Rem Koolhaas' Faena Bazaar and Arts Center.
Norman Foster's Apple HQ
No contemporary starchitecture map would be complete without Norman Foster's mind-boggling Apple Campus 2, a donut-shaped mothership that now $2B—that's billion—over budget and a year delayed. Of course, those could simply be natural hiccups in the process to create a 2.8M-square-foot ring that will "visually banish" cars and make room for some one thousand bicycles.