• design of the laboratory at the

    design of the laboratory at the

    Over 100 local primary school children have designed and built London’s first Mega Maker Lab in a former fire-engine-fixing hall. Sited in South London, the project is made to be a hub of activity instigated by the Institute of Imagination (iOi) and architectural educationalists, MATT+FIONA with designers Jestico + Whiles. The children came up with the idea that the design should encapsulates a journey to spark  Seven to eleven-year olds from Marlborough, Loughborough and Heathbrook primary schools came together to realize the Mega Maker Lab. Matthew Springett and Fiona MacDonald, Co-Founders of MATT+FIONA said, “This is our largest and most ambitious build yet. Like us, the Institute of Imagination believe that is a fundamental right for children to grow up with the opportunity to be creative and explore the world around them through design, making and first principles. It is wonderful to see how projects such as this bring communities together.”imagination in young makersAs the team explains, the children and makers set off on an excursion to find responses to a challenge they have been set, or one that they set themselves. There is an enclosed ‘Idea’ area for children to pool and share their ideas, away from the wider lab. Tool and making hubs enable the young designers to use real-life techniques to gain an understanding of robotics and inventive fabrication. There is also a test arena to see if inventions can move, float or fly, which opens onto a central social space where parents and families can participate and share their ideas. Gareth Binns, Chief Executive, Institute of Imagination said that, “The project aims to raise aspirations of the children involved and to give them the confidence to have their say on their built environment The Mega Maker Lab is made up of a landscape of ramps and platforms that suggest a route around the space, but allows children to make up their own pathways if they prefer. A series of elevated platforms provides seating as well as places to work at different heights. This undulating landscape also lends itself to become a test area where children can see how their creations respond to different scenarios. Aerial elements are suspended by a system of pulleys which allow the children to rise and fall for interaction with visitors, and to change the atmosphere of different parts of the Lab. The form and fabrication of these directly came from earlier design workshops with children

    design of the laboratory at the
    design of the laboratory at the
    design of the laboratory at the
    design of the laboratory at the
    design of the laboratory at the
  • Eat the frog

    Eat the frog

    Mark Twain said if you eat a live frog first thing in the morning, then nothing worse will happen to you all day. Tackle the thing you really don’t want to do first thing in the morning, when you’re fresh. Get it done, then you can move on to the tasks you actually enjoy

  • SOM Unveils Vision for First Human Settlement on the Moon

    SOM Unveils Vision for First Human Settlement on the Moon

    Skidmore Owings and Merrill have unveiled their vision for the “Moon Village”, the first permanent human settlement on the Lunar surface. Developed in collaboration with the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the multidisciplinary project will be masterplanned, designed, and engineered by SOM

    The Moon Village revolves around principles of resiliency and self-sufficiency. The masterplan envisions the settlement on the rim of the Shackleton Crater near the Moon’s South Pole, which benefits from near-constant daylight throughout the lunar year. Several critical infrastructural components and habitable structures would allow the Village to harness sunlight for energy, conduct experiments, and generate food from the Moon’s natural resources. Water from depressions in the South Pole would be extracted to create breathable air and rocket propellant for transportation. In addition, each cluster of modules would be connected to enable seamless mobility across the settlement

  • 100 Public Spaces: From a Tiny Square to an Urban Park

    100 Public Spaces: From a Tiny Square to an Urban Park

    The key to successfully designing or recovering public spaces is to achieve a series of ingredients that enhance their use as meeting places. Regardless of their scale, some important tips are: designing for people’s needs, the human scale, the mix of uses, multifunctionality and flexibility, comfort and safety, and a right integration to the urban fabric

    To give you some ideas on how to design urban furniture, bus stops, lookouts, bridges, playgrounds, squares, sports spaces, small parks and urban parks, check out these 100 notable public spaces

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