Built in the 50’s, this geodesic dome in the heart of Oklahoma City is always catching eyes from the highway. Every time I’ve driven past this landmark, I have always found myself mesmerized by the geometric pattern on the dome and by the glare the golden dome makes in the sunlight. When this building was originally built, it was the fifth largest geodesic dome of its type and it was the first one to be used commercially as a bank. After years of passing it by, one day I convinced my mother to stop in so we could look around and I was immediately taken aback by the intricate pattern continued on the interior ceiling. It was also pretty striking to me that because of the roof design the interior was very open and didn’t require any supports or pillars.
When I lived in Salt Lake City over the summer, I often drove past looking in awe of the looming presence this Mormon Temple has on the landscape around it. Salt Lake itself is set in a mountain basin surrounded on all sides by +13,000ft tall mountains providing a striking contrast to the narrow spires of the massive building. When I was in Temple square and on the grounds of the Temple itself, there was definitely a presence of opulence as well as secrecy. An aspect about the temple that is always left wanting after completing the tour is a view of the interior, as you must be an active member of the church of Latter Day Saints to be granted access to the inside of the temple. All in all, I feel that the sheer scale of this temple is very impressive for the time period it was built in, completed in 1893, and a testament to the 40 years it took to build this masterpiece.
This building is a Zen Buddhist temple in Kyoto that I visited over the summer of 2010. The physical setting as well as the visual appeal of the building itself made viewing the Golden Pavilion absolutely breathtaking. Out of all of the places
I’ve travelled too, Japan in the spring time has been the most visually striking due to the cherry blossoms and other colorful flowers which enhanced the overall architectural appeal. The temple itself is striking due to its sweeping roof and gold plated siding. As I sat across the water staring at this beautiful pavilion I could not help but wonder the level of craftsmanship and the number of hours necessary to create such an imposing structure almost 700 years ago. Overall, the setting of the pavilion paired with the body of water before it truly makes for a peaceful feeling both aesthetically and in the air around the temple.
Located on the base of the Santa Monica Mountains in Los Angeles, California, the Skirball Cultural Center was completed in 2013. The building sits on 15 acres and is 170,000 square feet consisting of a 350 seat auditorium, 400 car underground parking lot (right now is undergoing construction and when finished will hold 500 cars), a Jewish-American experience museum, a multipurpose auditorium (Ahmanson Hall), galleries for interchanging exhibits, and a conference and educational center. It was built in 4 phases, phase 1 completed in 1994, phase 2 in 2000, phase 3 in 2003, and phase 4 in 2013 and now under construction once more.
This doesn’t look a museum or that it would look like it has a 400+ car garage underground. This looks like a house. I have always wanted to go to California and this may be on my future list to visit if I ever get to go. Moshe Safdie really knows how to bring the calming tranquil element to his work. I very much enjoyed looking at his architecture.
The Federal Court House located in Springfield, Massachusetts, was designed to wrap around the 200-500 year old “heritage trees.” The modern building was finished in 2008, creating a touch of modern to a old element of architecture. The building still has the modern day security features but they are just concealed all while leaving open space to represent the civic building meaning of justice. This project is 162,000 square feet and cost $57 million.
This building looks almost incomplete, like they ran out of money and changed designs. Again I would like o visit this place because it is so cool and different. Moshe Safdie is very creative and I would love to visit every building he has designed. I don’t think I could think of something I don’t like about any of his buildings I have seen.
The Khalsa Heritage Center, built in 2011 is located in the town Anandpur Sahib, in the Punjab region of India. This structure was made with local stone and stainless steel. It was built on 75 acres with 2 complexes separated by a ravine, and connected by a bridge. The ravine has a series of dams that create a water garden. Full of galleries, this memorial was constructed for and celebrates 500 years of Sikh history. The grouping of 5 galleries symbolized the 5 virues of the Sikh faith.
Moshe Safdie designs a lot of galleries or museum. He doesn’t design the basic building. He finds a creative way to make the building part of the gallery. I enjoy looking at his work because it is so different compared to the buildings I’ve seen in my lifetime. I think that this building brings a a sense of tranquility to the whole aspect of the place.
The Salt Lake City Public Library was completed in 2003. Safdie wanted to adapt to new technology. The open space allows for modern adaption to take place. It is a 5 story triangle building with a rectangle administration space, and crescent shaped outer wall. The building has a 300 person auditorium, public plaza, and a staircase that leads people to the rooftop garden. There are reading rooms all along the 4 stories of the outer crescent wall, overlooking the amphitheater. The 5 story rectangular part of the building faces the South with a view of the mountains.
This building design looks dangerous. I would be kind of scared that I would fall off the side. It is a really neat design, but what are the safety procedures to make sure people don’t fall off? Moshe Safdie designs buildings that make people want to come and visit. It is very modern and inviting.
This is the Marina Bay Sands resort located in Singapore. Moshe Safdie said “his inspiration came from desks of cards.” Completed in 2011, it has 2,560 hotel rooms, a casino, convention center, theater, Museum of ArtScience, shopping, and dining options. With three 55 story towers, it is a whopping 1.3 million square feet. It has a 2.5 acre Skypark with up to 16 species of trees.
This reminds me of a a super expensive place to stay. The reason I say this is because of the material and the shear size of the towers. The building Moshe Safdie designs are of an expensive taste. It is a modern design that is appealing to the eye and makes people want to go there and stay and spend money, or at least that’s me.
This is Habitat 67, named this for being opened in 1967. It is located in Montreal, Canada. It is a 12 story housing complex, made of prefabricated modules, meaning each pod is built somewhere else, brought to a specific location, and placed on each other. There are 354 modules that are assembled to make 158 residences. Each has it’s own rooftop garden. Has spectacular views of the city and river.
I enjoyed reading about this building. It is very different than anything I’ve ever seen. It’s unique and I would love to live in one of these housing complexes. I’m sure I couldn’t afford it but it would be nice. I would want to stay on the 12th floor just to be able to take in the views.
Another building that has greatly influenced my life is Ida Lewis Yacht Club in Newport, Rhode Island. At this club I spent many summers sailing in clinics regattas and coaching. It is where I developed my skills as a sailor and eventually taught other young sailors how to compete at the national level. This club is located on an island just offshore that is accessed by a long board walk. Built in 1853 this structure’s original function was a light house. In 1924, the name of the building was changed from the Lime Rock and named after the Lime Rock’s most famous lighthouse keeper, Ida Lewis. Today Ida Lewis Yacht Club is one of the most popular east coast yacht clubs.