SDA Designs Temporary Volvo Pavilion

Volvo pavilionLos Angeles firm Synthesis Design + Architecture won an international competition to design a temporary pavilion to showcase and charge Volvo’s new plug-in electric hybrid, the V60.

The “Switch to Pure Volvo” competition was organized by international architecture magazine THE PLAN. It called on architects to create an innovative and original design for a temporary pavilion to showcase the car at fairs and open-air presentations throughout Italy.

SDA’s structure uses a continuous organic form made of HDPE mesh fabric with integrated photovoltaic cells over carbon fiber rods. The mesh fabric was digitally designed and allows the rods to bend. The structure can be completely collapsed into a tent bag and carried in the back of a car, making it highly portable and easy to erect and take down. It does not require a large group of people for construction. The design resembles one continuous surface, not a series of components.

SDA emphasized dynamic form, interactivity, visual impact, functionality, and efficiency in its unique design. SDA saw the competition as a way to address sustainability, identity, culture, materiality, permanence, and personal mobility. The architects wanted the temporary structure to carry the same principles of energy efficiency as the V60. It allows for the charging of vehicles, with a charging cable that is concealed in and peels away from the tubing.

The temporary structure is cost-effective due to its use of light-weight high-tech materials and photovoltaic power. SDA’s architects wanted to push the envelope when it came to materials and geometry.

Los Angeles-based engineering firm Buro Happold is performing structural engineering work related to the V60 pavilion project.

Appareil Proposes Temporary Structure for Mons 2015, Capital of Culture

5178a2e8b3fc4b36690000e8_naves-temporary-pavilion-proposal-appareil_naves02-528x360Spanish architecture firm Appareil has proposed Naves, a temporary pavilion for the city of Mons, Belgium, Capital of Culture in 2015.

According to its designers, Naves explores the relationship of gothic architecture to lightness and transparency. The proposed gothic arch will be made of glass fiber tubes using tension to create a maximum sense of lightness.

Gothic structures historically sought to reduce a building to its core essence and create a sense of lightness by incorporating natural light into the design and creating pillars, arches, and vaults that were as light as possible. Gothic churches used linear elements based on the ogive, or curved arch, and maximized permeability while minimizing weight.

Naves will consist primarily of reusable materials, including a wooden deck and partitions and a temporary skin made of ETFE, a fluorine-based plastic that is strong and resists corrosion over a wide range of temperatures. The structure will be centered around a central circulation axis that will provide access to cultural spaces, similar to the nave of a gothic church. Naves will consist of differentiated sections with varying rod density, which will gradually vary the interior volume of the structure and serve as a transition between the building and the surrounding park. The design is based on an analysis of the Sainte Wandru Cathedral, which is visible from the site.

The Capital of Culture is a movement that studies technology, art, architecture, economic and social change, culture, and the environment throughout Europe. It hosts exhibitions, theater, music, and events with literary and technological themes highlighting European culture. Its partners, such as museums and music and drama institutions, collaborate on a series of original projects. The 2015 event is designed to develop the city of Mons and give its people, companies, and artists the opportunity to advance by combining art, economics, the city, and its people and heritage.

Appareil is an architecture firm founded by Edouard Cabay in Barcelona in 2011. It uses process-based design methodology that combines traditional methods with digital design and manufacturing.