Architecture critic pans Apple's 'spaceship' campus as 'troubling,' 'scary'

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  • Reply 121 of 193
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    Look at the size of this proposed building compared to the entirty of the other campus with it's four main structures. It might be large enough that you won't notice the curve.



    A mile in circumference... you're probably right.
  • Reply 122 of 193
    I don't know why people care what this person thinks. it's their job to find fault.
  • Reply 123 of 193
    prwprw Posts: 31member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by island hermit View Post


    There's something odd about placing the words parking and spaceship in the same sentence.



    Weel, they could add a bunch of electric recharging stations so some cars could "dock".
  • Reply 124 of 193
    irnchrizirnchriz Posts: 1,616member
    It's a shame, it's easy to be a critic, in fact any of us can be a critic but it takes genius to create. In today's society far too much glory is placed in the hands of a critic (look at the x factor) in reality it's a bunch of no talent burnt out jealous with their cynical views which at the end of the day account for sod all in the history books. Just sayin.....
  • Reply 125 of 193
    irnchrizirnchriz Posts: 1,616member
    Beercules was here..
  • Reply 126 of 193
    I M not that impressed with apple's new campus, but this guy's criticism is rubbish, it's only coincidental that we both don't like its, cause he -to me- doesn't like it for all the wrong reasons.
  • Reply 127 of 193
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post


    I think that you are a fanny. Nothing wrong with that statement. I don't know you or where you are coming from, your education level or background but my gut says your a fanny. ( by the way, that's the polite UK way of saying you are a cunt)



    yeah that was a dirt low blow to Steve, you are right, and the c word goes perfectly well to the op.
  • Reply 128 of 193
    A revolutionary design choice would be to ban all gas-powered cars and have the capacity to generate it's own electricity on-site. Run the whole building and charge plug-ins with solar, hydrogen, or something else new. Can you imagine a $0 cost facility and the competitive edge it would give Apple?
  • Reply 129 of 193
    I am also an architect, so you can call me names too, if you want.



    Goldberger's major critique of this design is scale. He is right. Imagine this:



    You walk up to this building - there is NO character or detail, just an infinite plane of reflecting glass 50' high, stretching to infinity to your left and right (although it does curve out of view in a quarter mile or so). That's it. That's all folks, there is nothing more to see.



    Is that great design? If you think so, please tell me why.
  • Reply 130 of 193
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    To be not "over-the-top,“ it would have to be smaller.



    And then it wouldn’t be enough space, so.... over-the-top it is!



    As for it being minimalist—people have different tastes. I like the idea. Detail/ornamentation/pinstripes/“character” are only one approach to design. The detail and interest here is more in the green space within/around it: more green space than that land currently has. The building itself gets its interest from simplicity not busy detail. That IS still character.



    Why is detail necessary for character? It’s necessary only if that’s your taste.
  • Reply 131 of 193
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    This comment from the New Yorker page where the original piece appears is worth quoting, from a reader named "HDBOY."



    I always hate to burst the bubble of any condescending New York critic, but a glass-encased circular building in an area with wide open spaces is no more an oddity than a tubular skyscraper in a big city landscape. Imagine how odd and constricting a skyscraper rising out of a Montana prairie might feel to a cowboy or a rectangular swimming pool to a dolphin. Art is contextual. Steve Jobs understands his own business. He knows that hardware and software engineers spend many hours each week, hundreds each month and thousands each year living inside a virtual world, staring at endless, mind-numbing code on computer screens, often in windowless environments that are locked away from prying eyes for security reasons. It could just be that Apple's circular "Mothership" design maximizes every employee's quick access and exposure to windows, sunlight and a regular glimpse of the real world. It could be that a long, circular daily walk will force dedicated, overzealous workers to get out from behind those computers and get a little exercise as they migrate to the lunchroom or meetings each day. It could be that the design accomplishes this for 11,000 workers simultaneously, with minimal use of elevators ? imagine that! Besides, it's only one building in a sea of millions of rectangular boxes across the planet. What's the big deal? In fact, if you've ever lived in Silicon Valley and seen it from the air, you'd know that it consists of thousands of mind-numbing, low-slung rectangular buildings that all look alike and are linked together by paved ribbons of crowded freeways. From above or on the ground, this land use bears more than a passing resemblance to the pattern of circuits and chips on a computer motherboard. It could be that someone finally asked "Why build just another another rectangular building," or even, "why build another skyscraper in the middle of earthquake country?" Apple's new "donut-shaped" headquarters building breaks these patterns in spectacular fashion and in this context, may come to be viewed as more genius from the guy who taught us all to "Think Different.". My point is that Steve Jobs has a habit of looking at design problems differently than most people and deliver successful solutions that are both highly functional and transcend what is expected. I think that given his design track record, he's earned the right to conceive and build a circular building if he feels that it will be best for his campus and the unique needs of his workers. At this point, I'm not willing to bet against his ideas. So, dear New Yorker readers, who are you going to trust? The New York critic? Or the master inventor?



    I'd add that those who think the design is "pedestrian" are right in one sense. It is meant to be strolled through or around or across. It is profoundly human-scaled from that point of view. And its design is clearly meant to evoke repose, not agitation. The Pentagon comparison is especially cynical from this point of view. What is more agonized than a five-sided, mark-of-Satan warren of rectilinear offices?



    Now for a more general critique of the critic: What has happened to grown men in America that they feel it is ok to use the word "scary" in serious writing?



    And he uses the word "sleek" three times, referring to Apple designs. This is evidence either of a lazy mind at the time of writing, or more likely of someone who only has the most superficial visual sense of Apple's stuff. You can call my iPad or iPhone "sensuous" or full of tactile eroticism, but don't you dare use that two-bit, tin-eared journalist's cant in a serious piece of art criticism.
  • Reply 132 of 193
    The critic likened the concept proposed by Apple to "a gigantic donut."



    Mmmm. Donuts!
  • Reply 133 of 193
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ConradJoe View Post


    It would be a lot more expensive for Apple to put it underground. And besides - its not like Apple owes a nice view to the people on the freeway. The tall parking lot will shield Apple's property from the noise and pollution.



    [aside - since when you are you Apple booster? ]



    But doesn't that just point out the ... cognitive dissonance, for want of a better phrase, of having this giant, much-ballyhooed green space all around the main building -- and then shove a giant parking structure on the edge? It's like saying, "look mom, I cleaned my room - just don't look under the bed or in the closet!"



    And Apple has more money than the federal government (literally); they could extend Caltrain to the campus and still have enough left for coffee. (I'm not saying they should; I'm just pointing out that "in for an inch, in for a mile", and money is the least of Apple's constraints right now.)
  • Reply 134 of 193
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JONOROM View Post


    I am also an architect, so you can call me names too, if you want.



    Goldberger's major critique of this design is scale. He is right. Imagine this:



    You walk up to this building - there is NO character or detail, just an infinite plane of reflecting glass 50' high, stretching to infinity to your left and right (although it does curve out of view in a quarter mile or so). That's it. That's all folks, there is nothing more to see.



    Is that great design? If you think so, please tell me why.



    Uh... it's not an infinite plane of glass 50 feet high... each floor has a band around it that appears to be a couple feet high used as an overhang of some sort [or, when standing next to the building it will appear to only be about 12 feet high]... plus the entrances, where you actually would walk up to the building, have vertical beams on either side... nowhere in the drawings did I see a 50 foot wall of glass other than what appears to be the dining area... but again, the vertical poles.
  • Reply 135 of 193
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by island hermit View Post


    Uh... it's not an infinite plane of glass 50 feet high... each floor has a band around it that appears to be a couple feet high used as an overhang of some sort... plus the entrances, where you actually would walk up to the building, have vertical beams on either side... nowhere in the drawings did I see a 50 foot wall of glass other than what appears to be the dining area... but again, the vertical poles.



    Thank you. And if the glass is in fact reflective, you will see nothing but nature and animals, er, people, in it. Imagine that. How inhuman.
  • Reply 136 of 193
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Great post (#132) Flaneur.
  • Reply 137 of 193
    Goldberger also criticized the old woman who lived in a shoe:



    "But buildings aren't shoes, any more than they are broth."
  • Reply 138 of 193
    4fx4fx Posts: 258member
    Suggesting the proposed new campus is "like a donut" is a fair assessment, just as you could say every skyscraper is "like a candy bar".



    The question is whats wrong with a donut?



    The HUGE benefit to this style of architecture is that it provides employees with a maximized number of window offices. A square layout (most skyscrapers) provide the least percentage of windowed offices. Research suggests employees are more productive and have a better outlook on their work environment when they aren't crammed into offices with no view.



    The downside is that this layout will make walking from one side of the building to the other quite a long walk, but its always possible that they could put some people mover things like some airports have to reduce the walking time.



    Honestly, this type of building is one that I think even the dissenters will admit is functionally superb, even if they aren't fond of the aesthetics. But as someone who enjoys architecture (even though Im not an architect, but have a friend that is) I really like the design.
  • Reply 139 of 193
    1. Agreed - no one gives a rats... about this guys opinion...



    But then again, nobody is paying you guys anything to design anything now are they? So +1 to the critic. -1 to you.





    2. This project is Steve Job's version of a Pyramid.



    Long after Apple is uncool and your kids are saying "Awww, you got me a stupid iPod" the building will still stand... until someone else with a lot of money... tears it down.
  • Reply 140 of 193
    This building resembles the IBM Watson Research building in Yorktown Heights, NY, except the "spaceship" is a complete circle rather than just an arc. That IBM building is wonderful to work in; very light and spacious and gracefully curved.



    I can't understand what this architectural critic is all worked up about. Does he want all buildings to have flat planes and sharp angles? Does he actually get paid for pontificating about his aversion to curved surfaces?
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