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Taking Architectural Visualisation To A New Level

Aug 1, 2008
Does it ever make you wonder what goes through designers and builders heads when you see some of the ultra modern buildings that we have today? Personally speaking, I think it's a good thing to see the results of architectural visualisation that lead us to some of the high tech buildings we have today.

If we have to have a landscape littered with practical buildings then why not make them beautiful, practical buildings? Designers and architects have been challenged greatly over the years, coming up with designers that not only function as we would expect them to but are also resistant to our modern day dilemmas of terrorism and earthquakes. Designers, architects, builders and material manufacturers also have an obligation to ensure that they are doing all they can to ensure they remain eco friendly.

The architectural visualisation of designers has taken all of this into account and more. The world's population is growing faster than ever, people are living longer and space is becoming more and more limited. For this reason, buildings are often designed to serve more than one purpose and, as such, it is important that each individual area is designed to meet these purposes.

Buildings are often designed and built to withstand terror attacks - not an easy feat to accomplish but a necessary evil of the times we are currently living in. This comes down to engineers who are constantly using new materials and methods that can provide this source of protection for the buildings inhabitants and incorporating them into the new designs.

These new materials offer a greater flexibility when it comes to what the designers can do with the look of a building. Materials for building exteriors have also changed over the years, allowing architectural visualisation to be realised in a completely new manner.

The use of glass has often been a favourite in new buildings to create a sense of space and freedom for the occupants as well as helping the building to blend with its surroundings. In the early days, this caused problems with internal heat but is now much more efficient at keeping occupants cooler and is even being used to build solar panels into buildings in order for the building to be more self sufficient and environmentally friendly.

One particular firm of architects in Norway are constantly striving to push the boundaries of design and bring new ideas and architectural visualisation to the masses. Their buildings challenge popular ideas of what a building should look like by utilising space in completely different ways, making them more efficient, more beautiful and much more unusual to look at than the conventional type of construction we are used to.

This company are responsible for the design of the King Abdulaziz Centre for Knowledge and Culture in Saudi Arabia. A whole new era of architectural visualisation has been set with this building. The use of new materials, including metals, for the exterior gives the whole building a look of fluidity and shine that reflects the new thinking that has gone into it.

To look at it from a distance, the building resembles a pile of pebbles precariously balanced as if by accident. Up close, the interior is a functioning building that houses an auditorium, library and exhibition hall suitable for banquets and conferences as well as many other features. This is one building that truly questions the 'normal' use of design and brings a whole new look to our landscape. Let's hope that this will herald a new era for designers of all sorts to bring about a better picture for us.
About the Author
Design expert Catherine Harvey looks at the way architectural visualisation is coming to fruition.
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