Moshe Safdie is an architect who really examines how a building can shape an area. Not only how the space may look but its functionality, impact on the environment, and impact on the surrounding community. He seeks to engage and enrich the communities making unique and inviting spaces to fit the needs of each project. (Safdie Architects)
One of Safdie's most well known buildings is Habitat 67 (or Habitat). The concept of Habitat began in Safdie's master's thesis. He submitted the idea to the 1967 World Exhibition and, when it was accepted, established his own firm to help see its completion. (Safdie Architects) A series of carefully planned and stacked concrete blocks, Habitat seeks to create a space where every resident of the apartments would have access to natural lighting and a private garden area. It was the building that launched Safdie into a very successful career at a fairly young age (being 29 when it was built). The use of natural light and intimate spaces inside larger vessels have carried throughout all his work regardless of exterior design. (TED)
Due to his Jewish heritage and early success, he established a second office in Jerusalem in order to help restore the city. (Sheets) In 1976, one of the projects he received was an extension of Yad Vashem Holocaust museum to be dedicated to the one and a half million children that died during the Holocaust. He felt there were already so many museums dedicated to information about the Holocaust that he wanted to take a different approach to this one. Instead of old clothing and drawings of the survivors, he proposed they tunnel into the hill to a cave below and using images such as photographs and a single candle to convey the heaviness of the loss of the children. The committee turned down his proposal, saying nobody would understand and it sat for some time before a man from LA, who had lost his two year old child in Auschwitz, financed the build and it became reality. Yad Vashem Children's Memorial was initially built in 1987. The original building is tunneled through the hillside as he envisioned. The room with the photographs became the Hall of Names. A big circular shaped ceiling holds hundreds of pictures of the children who had died. The next room an eternal flame burns. There is a voice that plays that gives the names, places of birth, and ages at death of each of the children that died. The voice does not repeat for six months. After going through this room, a hallway takes you back out into the sunlight out the side of the hill overlooking the mountains of Judea. (Safdie Architects) Eventually the museum was expanded and reworked and Safdie was hired for part of this as well. (Arc Space)
Marina Bay Sands is a 845,000 square meter area and a $5.7 billion build cost project that was constructed in Singapore. It consists of a hotel, casino, shops and restaurants, a convention center, the Museum of ArtScience, and topped 55 stories up with a 9,941 square meter "SkyPark"....