"Wow, Why Didn’t I Think of That?"

While KWA stays deep in the trenches of building state-of-the-art multifamily housing projects, our employees still find time to stop and smell a rose … or maybe some sawdust … and appreciate some pretty genius craftsmanship.

It’s time for the second installment of KWA’s “Wow, Why Didn’t I Think of That?”
lista selection of unique buildings, chosen by KWA employees, that meet the following criteria:

1. Innovative;

2. Inspirational

3. Makes you say, “Wow, why didn’t I think of that?”

KWA is tipping our hardhats to the following five buildings:

Royal Ontario Museum

Have you noticed an added shimmer emitting from the city of Ontario? It’s most likely the city’s Royal Ontario Museum that received a crystalized facelift back in 2007 with the addition of the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal building. The museum opened in 1912 and is among the world’s leading museums of natural history and world cultures. Located at one of Canada’s most important urban intersections, the unique triangular addition was constructed with 25 percent glass and 75 percent aluminum. It houses seven galleries overlooking Bloor Street West, as well as a graceful new main entrance and two soaring interior spaces – Hyacinth Gloria Chen Crystal Court and the Spirit House.

Blur Building

A Walk in The Clouds became more than just a movie title for millions of Swedes back in 2002, as they got the chance to stroll through an enormous man-made cloud known as the Blur Building. Designed by architects Elizabeth Diller and Ricardo Scofidio, the Blur Building was constructed for the 2002 Swiss Expo in Yverdon-les-Bains, Switzerland. Rising from Lake Neuchatel, the Blur Building was created from rectilinear struts and diagonal rods that were outfitted with more than 30,000 fog nozzles. Theses fog nozzles produced a fine mist, pulled from the lake, and created a man-made cloud that engulfed the building’s framework. As visitors began a walk in the cloud, they wore “braincoats” that stored personal data and changed colors to reveal their compatibility with other guests. The Blur Building was a temporary venue for the expo and no longer exists.

Source: Designboom.com

Housing Building in Carabanchel

It’s color by number housing! KWA likes the unique color palate of a social housing complex designed by architects Amann-Canovas-Maruri. KWA also tips its hat to the clever incorporation of open pass-throughs that provide natural light throughout the complex. Located in Carabanchel, Madrid, the charming development was constructed from metallic-colored car, creating an exterior that serves as a ventilated façade.

The interior was made with integrated furniture and versatile space with openings available in the wall.

Source: Archdaily.com

Institute for Advanced Architecture

Talk about finding inspiration! Students at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia in Barcelona, Spain, can find design inspiration literally at the doorsteps of their new Endesa Pavilion – a Spanish education and research center. Also dubbed the Solar House 2.0, this pavilion was designed around the sun’s seasonal path. Its unique angles, windows and solar panels were positioned perfectly to allow year-round illumination, as well as eliminate direct sunlight in summer months and invite it in for the winter months.

Source: Core77.com

Amazing Townhouses

With such an industry push for eco-friendly materials, appliances and finish-outs, KWA is always interested in how designers are finding ways to bring the outdoors indoor. We think the architects at 24H Architecture hit the nail on the head with two custom “canyon” inspired townhomes in Leiden, South Holland, The Netherlands. From the cabin-like exterior to the continual flow of the stairs, hardwoods, construction materials and décor, the architects really encapsulated a “canyon-away-from-the-canyon.” Due to an open floor plan design, the home’s privacy doors (i.e., closing off the bathrooms) are cleverly hidden within the curvatures of the supporting structures.

Source: Homedsgn.com