CivicArts - Eric R Kuhne & associates

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News


22/04/15
The Silver Rush Begins: Eric Kuhne interviewed as Silvertown gets green light VIEW

31/03/15
Big news for Bellingham: CivicArts concept masterplan helps seal deal VIEW

15/05/14
Island Gardens Miami gets the green light VIEW

16/03/14
Green Shoots for Garden City: George Osbourne gives backing to Ebsfleet VIEW

01/08/13
Great new ways: Eric Kuhne sheds light on Paxton's grand design VIEW

22/07/13
Building better by example: Headwaters Park encourages good design VIEW

23/05/13
Letter of the week: Eric Kuhne responds to AJ article on Titanic Quarter VIEW

10/05/13
Cracking ad campaign: Wallace and Gromit's Titanic adventure VIEW

02/05/13
Numbers that speak for themselves: Titanic Belfast's maiden statistics VIEW

11/10/12
An exchange of ideas: CivicArts plays host to the APECF delegation VIEW

19/09/12
Headwaters Park Development Symposium: Eric Kuhnes visionary mind to be 'tapped again' VIEW

10/08/12
Let there be Light: Work begins on CivicArts' Tower of Light at Mid Valley Gardens VIEW

03/08/12
Experience Eric: Watch Eric Kuhne's speech at the TILE Experience Economy Forum VIEW

01/05/12
A lot to talk about: Eric Kuhne interviewed in article on 'ReThinking a Lot' VIEW

18/04/12
Blueprint for Belfast icon: Read Blueprint's review of Titanic Belfast VIEW

12/04/12
Titanic plans to transform Belfast's cityscape VIEW

11/04/12
Will Belfast become "Titanic City"? VIEW

05/04/12
Inside Titanic Belfast VIEW

04/04/12
Belfast wagers on Titanic's unsinkable appeal VIEW

02/04/12
Titanic return for 105-year-old VIEW

01/04/12
Derelict Titanic shipyard revitalised for 100th anniversary VIEW

31/03/12
Titanic Belfast opens doors to public VIEW

30/03/12
Titanic Belfast exhibit opening where doomed ship built VIEW

19/03/12
Billboard Belfast: Titanic Belfast becomes platform for promoting Northern Ireland VIEW

11/03/12
Songs from the Shipyards: Titanic Belfast featured on 'Songs of Praise' VIEW

01/03/12
The Opening Draws Near: 30 days till Titanic Belfast launches VIEW

09/02/12
It's a sign! Steel TITANIC installed on Queen's Island VIEW

01/02/12
Two months to Launch: Titanic Belfast nears the end of the rainbow VIEW

20/12/11
Hear the Heartbeat: Titantic Belfast trailer now on YouTube VIEW

11/11/11
Like ships in the night: New nocturnal images of Titanic Belfast VIEW

09/08/11
Clad Tidings: Titanic Signature Project's plates in place VIEW

04/08/11
Signature Project to get the Full Picture: Dr Robert Ballard prepares to return to Titanic VIEW

28/06/11
The Book of the Mall: Two CivicArts projects published in ArtPower's 'More? Mall!' VIEW

03/06/11
Midway Gardens, Istanbul: A blueprint for successful symbiotic activity VIEW

31/05/11
Marking a moment in time: Belfast commemorates Titanic's launch VIEW

24/05/11
Powering through the pipeline: Titanic Signature Project progresses VIEW

06/04/11
Prime Example: Eric to speak at the e.g. 5 conference this Friday VIEW

25/03/11
Coming ashore in style: See CivicArts' scheme for a luxury liner terminal in Istanbul VIEW

23/03/11
Viva Las Vegas: CivicArts' horseshoe scheme deals a new hand to the city of dreams VIEW

22/03/11
Speaking in Stockholm: Eric Kuhne to present '5 CITIES FOR THE FUTURE' at Kopcentrumdagen VIEW

09/02/11
Re-imagining Retail: CivicArts transforms Chadstone into a town centre VIEW

04/02/11
Building Pictures: Donal Mc Cann begins his portrait of the Signature Project VIEW

14/12/10
Water under the bridge?: Read Bluewater press cuttings from the EKA archive VIEW

24/11/10
New face on the net: Al Wady Gardens gets its own Facebook page VIEW

23/11/10
Eric currently being interviewed by Ben Thompson, editor of MENA Infrastructure magazine VIEW

23/11/10
Saving the best till last: Eric closes the first day of The Big 5 VIEW

18/11/10
Book & Blog, Twitter & Tube: Follow our Multidisciplinary Practice through Multiple Media VIEW

16/11/10
New signature on Belfast's skyline: Titanic Signature Project takes shape VIEW

04/11/10
Letter on a Lecture: Paul Finch records his thoughts on Eric's Berlin presentation VIEW

29/10/10
City of Silk and Mohammed Bin Rashid Gardens win Arabian Property Awards VIEW

22/10/10
An Eye to the Future: Eric joins the judging panel at the World Retail Conference VIEW

21/10/10
Presenting the Future: Eric addresses the World Retail Conference in Berlin VIEW

14/10/10
A Riverfront Reborn: A vision for Griffintown's renaissance VIEW

12/10/10
Building Narratives in Boston: Eric explains architecture's story-telling qualities at the BBF VIEW

11/10/10
Hot Property: Eric explores 'The Prophesy of Leisure' at London's Property Investor Show VIEW

30/09/10
New Life along the Lachine: Two weeks till release of Griffintown, Montreal VIEW

23/09/10
A New Pearl in Paradise: Manama Lagoon adds layers of luxury to Bahrain VIEW

16/09/10
Arabian Accolades: CivicArts succeeds in winning two International Property Awards VIEW

15/09/10
Layers, Leaves and Light: New pictures of Mid Valley Gardens VIEW

10/09/10
Something in the Pipeline: Watch Al Wady Gardens on YouTube VIEW

09/09/10
Graceful living by the Gulf: Manama Lagoon to be released in two weeks VIEW

08/09/10
A Land of Luxury Along the Wadi: Al Wady Gardens released online VIEW

01/09/10
Palatial Patterns in the Sand: One week till Al Wady Gardens comes to the website VIEW

27/08/10
A New Reel on Riyadh: Film of Al Wady Gardens released VIEW

11/08/10
Tower in Waiting: New images of the proposed V Building VIEW

04/06/10
Storeys for stories: Titanic Signature Project takes shape VIEW

06/05/10
Lasting Legacy: FX magazine salutes Bluewater's enduring quality VIEW

11/03/10
CTBUH 2009 Chicago Conference video: "Starcatchers versus Skyscrapers" VIEW

22/02/10
CTBUH Summary: 'We are constructing today what had been dreams just a few years ago' VIEW

21/01/10
Leading the Pack: Burj Mubarak al Kabir tops Popular Mechanic's survey of future skyscrapers VIEW

04/12/09
Firm Foundations: 4,000 tons of concrete poured into the Titanic Signature Project VIEW

04/11/09
Executive Decision: Titanic Quarter receives a 10m endorsement from Belfast City Council VIEW

03/11/09
43.5 million pound grant from Government keeps Titanic Quarter steaming ahead VIEW

22/10/09
Eric to present the case for 'Starcatchers versus Skyscrapers' at Chicago conference VIEW

01/07/09
Good news will travel: Titanic Quarter graces easyJet Traveller magazine VIEW

01/05/09
Mohammed Bin Rashid Gardens and the debate on Dubai's sustainable future VIEW

31/03/09
Burj Mubarak Al Kabir features in Science Illustrated's lineup of tall buildings VIEW

25/03/09
Eric Kuhne lays out his vision for integrated architecture and civic arts in Landscape VIEW

22/03/09
Flagstone Properties presses ahead with the long-awaited Island Gardens, Miami VIEW

20/02/09
Passionate Visionary: Read the Eric Kuhne interview with Men's Passion magazine VIEW

13/02/09
Extreme Exposure: Burj Mubarak al Kabir graces the cover of Popular Science VIEW

26/01/09
Eric Kuhne attends the Nordic Urban Design Conference in Bergen, Norway as Keynote Speaker VIEW

20/01/09
The Tallest Towers in 2020: The Council on Tall Buildings measures up the Burj Mubarak al Kabir VIEW

07/01/09
Excited bloggers are already posting photos of the newly opened Mid Valley Gardens... VIEW

06/01/09
Island Gardens anticipates wildlife sanctuary for birds at Biscayne Bay and Watson Island VIEW

29/11/08
Belfast News Letter: Titanic building 'will be icon' VIEW

28/11/08
Belfast Telegraph City News : Titanic rises again in 100m plan VIEW

28/11/08
BBC News: Titanic project 'to benefit all' VIEW

27/11/08
BBC News: Executive launches Titanic funds VIEW

24/11/08
The Gulf Magazine, September 6-12, 2008: Mohammed Bin Rashid Gardens VIEW

24/11/08
Executive Magazine Special report Oct 08: Kuwait's City of Silk VIEW

18/11/08
Building, Oct 08: Eric Kuhne interview: Aladdin's cave VIEW

14/11/08
Island Gardens Groundbreaking Bash VIEW

17/10/08
Burj Mubarak Al Kabir Tower features in Hyundai Genesis advert VIEW

17/10/08
Kuwait to invest in mega projects - Kuwait Times VIEW

29/08/08
Middle East Architect June 08 - Telling Stories
Estates Gazette profiles Eric Kuhne

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Telling stories
by Lucy Taylor on Sunday, 01 June 2008

Eric Kuhne & Associates is designing and building projects around the world. Lucy Taylor sits down with the practice’s principal and namesake to talk about Silk, sway and storytelling.

What can you tell me about Kuwait’s City of Silk?

The original concept for City of Silk was that it would be one of seven city sites to accommodate the explosion of the expat population living in Kuwait, as well as a larger number of Kuwaitis returning after the invasion [by Iraq in 1991].

So they have an enviable need there, which is to provide major new communities on a scale which is pretty much unprecedented. I think Dubai gets a lot of the attention these days, but before the invasion, Kuwait was 20 years ahead of any other city in the Middle East.

The great news is that last November [2007], the parliament unanimously endorsed it and gave it planning approval, which allowed the executive branch of the Kuwaiti government to mobilize resources to start doing all the infrastructure planning as soon as possible.

Why ‘City of Silk’?

We worked with a group called Tamdeen Corporation and we said we’d like to work on a gateway city. Tamdeen’s chairman-Mohammed Al Marzouk-and our guys worked together to basically incubate this city.

I started drawing diagrams on a map, showing all these connections that Kuwait was going to be able to do, and you very quickly realise that Kuwait sits right in the middle of 30 Middle Eastern countries.

[Its connections] extend from Kazakhstan in the north to really the middle of Africa in the south, Morocco in the west and all the way over to China in the east. So the idea of recreating the silk routes for the twenty-first century is where the name of the city came from.

Can you give me an idea of the scale of the City of Silk?

There are four city centres in the City of Silk. The first one is called the City of Commerce, and it’s basically creating the equivalent of London’s Canary Wharf for Kuwait.

The second one is called the City of Leisure. It sits on the banks of the River Delta, 16 miles from Iraq, and it uses the river water to develop a whole load of resorts and sandy beaches on the river.

It also includes an athletics and entertainment centre, and connects to a separate district which is a media city centre. Kuwait produces most of the Arabic soap operas, so it builds on that industry.

The third is called Ecology City, and it is an amazing place because we took 60km2 out of the centre of the City of Silk and turned it into a wildlife refuge.

Ecology City also includes a desert reclamation centre, a wetlands ecology centre, and a fantastic collection of research universities that deal with botanical and zoological sciences.

Then the fourth centre is the Diplomatic Cultural Centre, and what it deals with is the higher education, there will be graduate education located there and there will also be a centre for archaeology.

There will be diplomatic missions, cultural centres, the major opera house and the performing arts centre.

Tell me about the centrepiece of the City of Silk, the Burj Mubarak al-Kabir.

The prime minister and the chairman of Tamdeen Corporation came to me and said ‘we want the tallest building in the world’, and I said, ‘No you don’t. What you want is a building that will be among the tallest’.

It’s going to be 1001m for the 1001 Arabian Nights. So again the architecture ties itself in to the folk literature of the entire civilization. I told them, ‘we don’t have to be the tallest, but we have to be one of the best’.

The towers are actually seven villages stacked on top of one another. Seven 30-storey buildings on top of each other and between each of these 30-storey buildings are four levels of gardens, recreation facilities, shops, healthcare facilities, education facilities, police, fire and maintenance facilities.

So they become the town squares and the high streets-they’re just vertically stacked as opposed to being horizontal.

How will you combat building sway at that height?

In terms of its design, it’s a three-bladed propeller. It works like a tripod, so no matter which way the wind is blowing, two of the three blades brace it.

You have to deal with not only the straight-on force of wind, but also the turbulent wind that curls around corners of the tower, just like turbulence is a problem on wings.

We talked about this with the engineers and we decided to install vertical wing aerilons, so as the turbulence increases they’re counter-balanced to adjust themselves to provide smooth flow of air around the tower, and that is a major innovation.

How important are ‘green’ solutions in architecture today?

You cannot build today without being conscientious about the environment. It’s essential. It’s just like remembering to close your car door when you’re backing out of a driveway. Why wouldn’t you make your building the most sustainable possible? Ecological sense is good business sense.

The sad part about this current obsession with green cities and sustainability is that it’s all focused on energy and material, and it’s not focused on the temperaments and quality of life of the citizens, which is often directly related.

How does architecture in Dubai differ from that in the West?

The family is the [main focus] in the Middle East; everything needs to be designed around the family. And it’s unusual because in America and the UK it’s not like that; it’s a different world.

Dubai in particular has, for years, been mostly focused on tourist resorts for businessmen and women, or expats, while the amenities for residents in Dubai are slim. The biggest thing we run into in every developing nation is that they’re not used to putting aside public space for civic pageantry.

As you’re seeing in Dubai, the buildings might have some curiosity as silhouettes on the skyline, but the space between the buildings is just terrifying. And the spaces between the buildings are as important, some times more important, than the buildings themselves.

How much do you try to infuse your projects with local flavour?

We are definitely against the minimalist aesthetic. We think that sterility is a tired and cheap way out. We believe you should tap into everything from arts and crafts, folk songs, ceremonial robes from festivals, architectural building types, ornamental patterns that are used in everything from fabrics to tiles.

Every culture, every civilization, has a fingerprint of those things that are unique to it and we know that if we can take things on, reinterpret them with contemporary building systems and contemporary materials, we can refresh the genius of that place in the world.

We should be aiming to teach the rest of the world about that genius, as opposed to importing in North American or European predictable solutions, which to me is nothing short of cultural imperialism.

How do you ‘refresh the genius of the past’?

The Middle East has an exceptionally complex set of ornaments, based on Arabian traditions, and they change drastically between countries. From Kazakhstan to Kuwait to Bahrain to Dubai, they have very different ideas.

We’re often brought in to introduce [indigenous] spirit in a very creative way. We try to give people something that they can identify with; something that touches their soul, but also teaches the visitors that come about the quality of that particular place.

Modernism is just starting to realise that it strips the story-telling quality of architecture, and in doing so creates cities that are boring and sterile and austere and antiseptic.

We need to restore the richness of cities and their capacity to tell great stories through the civic artworks.

The richness of telling great stories [with architecture] was going on for centuries up until about 150 years ago, and then it all stopped. Buildings became stripped of their content in terms of stories, and cities and architecture lost its capacity to tell great epic stories.

It was an era that was forsaken for a machine aesthetic that never worked and never will work.


29/08/08
Renowned architect slams snub to Arabic heritage VIEW

29/08/08
Arabian Business: City of Silk VIEW

23/07/08
The Guardian: Kuwait plans new 132bn metropolis VIEW

23/07/08
Outdoor Design magazine: Mohammed Bin Rashid Gardens VIEW

17/07/08
Journal Gazette: Headwaters Park - A towering idea VIEW

17/07/08
Guardian article: cost of driving impact on out-of-town shopping VIEW

25/06/08
Panoramas of Darling Park's Cockle Bay Wharf VIEW

25/06/08
A Renaissance for Skyscrapers - NYTimes.com VIEW

25/05/08
Hotelier magazine - Middle East. Buliding Dreams VIEW

20/05/08
The National, Peter C Baker meets Eric Kuhne, the architectural evangelist VIEW

14/04/08
Video of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Gardens launch VIEW

19/03/08
Kuwait details US$77 billion 'City of Silk' VIEW

06/03/08
Headwaters Park to announce possible new structures VIEW

06/03/08
A Towering Idea - Headwaters Park VIEW

04/03/08
City of Silk featured in Emirates' Portfolio Magazine VIEW

01/03/08
Architecture is the New Diplomacy VIEW

29/02/08
From Belfast to Kuwait comes the City of Silk VIEW

29/02/08
Camp David at Lake Borobay VIEW

22/02/08
World press reacts to City of Silk and 1001-Metre High Tower VIEW

14/01/08
Malaysian Business magazine on Mid Valley Gardens VIEW

13/12/07
Island Gardens web site launches with new images VIEW

04/12/07
Silk City sketches get final approval VIEW

26/11/07
Perspective magazine case studies Titanic Signature Project VIEW

25/11/07
Kuwait Burj-beater plans get green light VIEW

08/10/07
Birmingham press herald V Tower a landmark VIEW

03/10/07
Mid Valley Gardens opens in Kuala Lumpur VIEW

03/10/07
The Edge 24/09/07 Mid Valley Gardens: Breathing life into public spaces VIEW

28/09/07
Future of NI ports to be resolved in months VIEW

26/09/07
Mid-Valley Gardens scheme nears completion VIEW

15/08/07
Belfast’s Titanic Quarter on BBC ONE NI in Building Britain VIEW

15/08/07
Titanic Quarter hope big lottery deal floats: The Irish Times 16/07/07 VIEW

15/08/07
TQ magazine interviews Eric Kuhne about the Titanic Signature Project VIEW

09/07/07
Mid Valley Gardens progress: Office Towers take shape VIEW

25/06/07
Financial Times - Birmingham skyscraper plans rise again VIEW

19/06/07
The Birmingham Post - V Building plans submitted VIEW

17/06/07
AJ: Eric Kuhne reveals Titantic visitor centre in Belfast VIEW

06/06/07
DETI - Executive Backs Lottery Application For Titanic Project VIEW

24/04/07
Building For Life March 2007: The V Building VIEW

24/04/07
Lake Borovoye in The Independent MORE

16/04/07
V Building - Jersy Evening post article 27/03/07 VIEW

26/03/07
Birmingham looks up: The Times on the V Building VIEW

21/03/07
Civic Life Pageantry called for at Mixed-Use Conference 2006 VIEW

20/03/07
Building magazine: Kuhne's Arena Central tower unveiled at MIPIM MORE

20/03/07
New Statesman on Bluewater and the V&A's new architecture gallery VIEW

20/03/07
AJ: Kuhne unveils 50-storey tower for Birmingham VIEW

20/03/07
LunchoverIP: City of Silk at TED2007 MORE

20/03/07
V Tower in Sunday Times article on skyscraper spree VIEW

16/03/07
City of Silk (Madinat al Hareer) presentation receives standing ovation at TEDTalks 2007 VIEW

15/03/07
Birmingham Post reports on Brum’s V for victory VIEW

15/03/07
BBC news site reports on Arena Square’s V Tower VIEW

07/03/07
Estates Gazette profiles Eric Kuhne, March 2007 VIEW

05/03/07
D'Luxe magazine features Island Gardens, March 2006 VIEW

07/02/07
Photos from the Titanic Quarter launch event, 18th Jan 07 VIEW

06/02/07
Times article on Titanic Quarter, 2 Feb 2007 VIEW

27/11/06
The Mall of Kuwait is launched at Mapic VIEW

27/11/06
Mid Valley Gardens progress. Works through months October and November 2006 VIEW

16/08/06
Mid Valley Gardens progress VIEW

14/07/06
Telegraph article on development in Dubai, 6 May 2006 VIEW

10/07/06
Press announces Birmingam Tower VIEW

18/04/06
Madinat Al Hareer - Al Anbaa, Al Watan, Al Seyassah press clippings VIEW

18/04/06
Madinat Al Hareer - AJ, New Scientist, New York Times press clippings VIEW

31/03/06
Kuwait press announce plans for Madinat Al Hareer (City of Silk) VIEW

13/03/06
Titanic Quarter Belfast presentation fly-through video and masterplan VIEW

12/10/05
Titanic Quarter Belfast launched by Harcourt and Harbour Commission VIEW

12/10/05
Shangri-La announced at Island Gardens, Miami VIEW

29/09/05
Mid Valley Gardens flythrough, panorama and excavation works: August and September VIEW

09/09/05
Mid Valley Gardens progress. Excavation works through months July and August VIEW

16/08/05
Mall of Kuwait launched by the Tamdeen Shopping Centre Development Co, Kuwait VIEW

02/08/05
Photos of Darling Harbour packed with luxury yachts for the Sydney International Boat Show VIEW

01/08/05
The Sydney Morning Herald on a packed Sydney International Boat Show, Darling Harbour VIEW

28/06/05
Jersey's new Castle Quay waterfront announced at St Helier's Opera House VIEW

27/06/05
Mid Valley Gardens progress. Excavation works through months May and June VIEW

20/04/05
Mid Valley Gardens by IGB Corp. excavates 4-basements for major expansion VIEW

22/04/05
Updated photos of BurJuman in Dubai VIEW

07/01/05
Bur Juman In Vogue article VIEW

13/04/05
St Helier Waterfront Plans by Dandara revealed at Opera House VIEW

18/04/05
Intricate Leisure & Retail Destination planned for Kuwait City by Tamdeen VIEW

16/07/04
Latest construction photos of BurJuman Gardens in Dubai, set for late 2004 opening VIEW

02/09/04
Stage 2 of Mid Valley Gardens in Kuala Lumpur commences construction this September

02/09/04
Bluewater comes to the National Portrait Gallery in the exhibition - A Blueprint VIEW

27/09/04
Bluewater comes to the Victoria and Albert Museum's new Architectural Gallery VIEW

01/10/04
Updated photos of BurJuman in Dubai, Now Open VIEW

29/09/04
The identity of the puzzling New campaign is revealed today as the BurJuman shopping centre MORE

30/09/04
Advertising Campaign for the opening of Burjuman in Dubai VIEW

 
 

A(C) CivicArts LLP, 2011