This week’s crazy building is the Statoil Building which is in Fornebu, Norway. This building was created for the Statoil Company which is an energy producer.
The Statoil building which appears to be falling down, is actually very energy efficient and uses only a fraction of the energy such a building normally would. Another wonderful aspect of this unusual structure is that inside, there are very few walls, this allows the space to be easily customized from very small (3 meters by 3 meters) to very large, depending on the needs of the occupants.
The design was designed to allow the most people excellent views of the river and surrounding landscape and also give them the best light.
One big challenge with the construction was the glass ceilings. This was a difficult engineering feat due to the weight from snow in the winter.
The Statoil Building is a modern solution to the problem of creating a structure which can house a large number of people in a work environment while integrating into the landscape which it does while being energy efficient as well.
This week’s crazy building is the Rusty Building in Leeds, England.
Known officially as Broadcasting Tower, this structure is most notable for one particular feature: Its facade is covered in COR-TEN weathering steel.
When exposed to the elements over a few years, this special type of steel eventually forms a deep red, rust-like appearance.
For this strange tower, the effect is a strange contrast between modern architecture and a facade that seems to be in a state of decay.
Inside, however, the Rusty Building is anything but dilapidated. As part of Leeds Beckett University, it comfortably contains 241 student residences and 110,000 square feet of classroom and office space.
Despite the appearance of age, this innovative building will be housing students for a long time to come.
This week’s crazy building is the Tianzi Hotel in Hebei, China.
In the small, obscure town of Langfang lies what is surely among the strangest hotels on earth.
At first glance, it looks like a giant statue. In fact, it’s the colorful facade of what the Guiness Book of Records calls the world’s largest “image building.”
Tianzi Hotel’s facade depicts Fu, Lu and Shou, three classical Chinese deities who are the personifications of good fortune, prosperity and longevity. They are often depicted on temples and shrines and even in Chinese homes, as they denote the three aspects of a good life.
These larger-than-life, 10-story depictions are sure to attract visitors. After all, it’s probably a positive sign when your good luck symbols are large enough to live in!
Buying a San Diego home? Search all homes for sale
In case you haven’t heard yet, I’m writing a book. It’s called The 22 Secrets to Selling Your Home for the Most Money, in the Shortest Time, with the Least Hassle.
The book is all written, but we’re going through some final editing and graphic design changes right now. It should be ready to go sometime in the next month or two.
If you are thinking of selling your home, let me know. When the book comes out, I’d be happy to send you a complimentary copy. As always, give me a call or send me an email with any questions you have. I’d be happy to answer them.
Buying a San Diego home? Search all homes for sale
How hard (or easy) is it to get a home loan? Before I answer that, it’s important that you remember that we’re at the midpoint of 2016.
Lenders operate like the market is one big pendulum that swings one way or the other. You may recall that the crash of 2007-08 was very much driven because the pendulum had swung very far a certain way. It had swung so far we started to joke that if you could fog a mirror, you could get a home loan. Then, after the crash, the pendulum swung too far the other way and made it very hard to get a home loan.
Since then, the pendulum has been swinging towards the middle to the point that getting a home loan is now much easier. Understand, though, that lenders still want to document a lot of things, but they aren’t nearly as strict as they were. You can actually start getting low down payments again. If you are thinking about buying or selling and were concerned about the difficulty of getting a mortgage, you can rest assured that it’s not that hard anymore. On top of that, interest rates are very low right now.
If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home, please call or email me. Thank you very much!
This week’s crazy building is the Shelbyville Goat Tower in Shelbyville, Illinois.
Any guesses why it’s called the Goat Tower? Hint: It’s a tower, for goats.
…Okay, I guess I gave that one away.
Anyway, this bizarre 31-foot brick building is actually one of five goat towers in the world.
Goats evidently love to climb the cantilevered spiral staircase, which consists of 276 concrete steps. There are small “cubbyholes” at regular intervals for the goats to rest inside. The steep roof is designed to keep birds from roosting there.
Owner David Johnson says his 34 goats never fall off due to their climbing prowess… but in winter, he personally melts the ice off the staircase with a blowtorch. Now that’s dedication!
This week’s crazy building is the Football Shoe in Amstelveen, Netherlands.
The official name of this building is the ING House, after the banking firm it used to house. But locals have taken to calling it the Football (i.e. soccer) Shoe due to its unusual shape.
The entire structure is indeed shaped like a shoe! It’s supported largely by giant V-shaped beams, with a massive cantilever at the “toe” of the building.
The other local nickname for the building is “The Dustbuster”… but it looks just as crazy no matter what you call it!
This week’s crazy building is the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision in Hilversum, Netherlands.
This building is extraordinary both inside and out.
It’s a cultural archive and museum that houses nearly three-quarters of the Netherlands’ audiovisual records. that includes 750,000 hours of movies, radio, TV and music, some of it dating back to the 1800s.
The outer facade is made up of colored relief glass depicting some of the most iconic scenes from Dutch television.
The interior may be even more impressive: The cavernous space is filled with light, bridged walkways and flecks of color from the facade lit from the sun. A massive tiled section of the building looms over the atrium, and looking down visitors can glimpse the archive below through dozens of square openings.
It’s a bizarre and beautiful building—one of many in the Netherlands. Any budding architecture buff should pay the country a visit!
This week’s crazy buildings are the Moai Pension buildings near Seoul, South Korea.
The designers at Studio Koossino say these strange buildings were inspired by the iconic stone Moai statues on Easter Island. In reality, they look more like giant fragments of bright yellow shrapnel.
These vacation homes were built to house tourists who’ve traveled to visit the nearby botanic garden. The six residences have a concrete base that widens as it goes up.
The angular homes have a balcony on the opposite side, some of which overlook a relaxing lap pool. The interiors are hyper-minimalist, and are almost completely white to emphasize the natural lighting.
They either look like housing units in a utopian society… or a dystopia, depending on whether they strike your fancy!
This week’s crazy buildings are the Rundeskogen Towers in Sandnes, Norway.
“Rundeskogen” literally means “round woods” in Norwegian. The project consists of three towers containing a total of 114 apartments.
The project’s most distinctive design feature is the cantilever: The buildings are lifted off the ground to create a vaguely mushroom-like shape. Several different window styles and a triangle-tiled facade combine to create an eclectic and stylish look.
The architects designed Rundeskogen to take advantage of the surrounding environment. They have beautiful views of nearby fjords, and there is plenty of greenery at ground level. (Is it ‘whitery’ in winter?) The unique cantilever also creates covered spaces directly underneath, which contain playgrounds and workout facilities. The towers have solar panels and geothermal heat pumps, making them environmentally friendly in even more ways.
It’s another one of those designs that just seems to work on every level. Now, why can’t we get more clever and innovative buildings around these parts?