ECHO writes!

Hello everybody. 

Today you can finally read our first article featured on InformantDaily.com!  ECHO is going to be a regular contributor for this new on-line magazine, with monthly articles about architecture and design. Our goal will be to make our profession (and passion) more accessible, shedding myths and rumors and finally showing everybody what we really dedicated our lives to!

Start following our articles, and keep doing it!

You will not regret it. 

 

Our first contribution:

http://informantdaily.com/steel-grass-high-line-impact-industrial-renewal/

 

GreenScraper featured in inhabitat.com!

inhabitat.com, a website that displays Architecture and Design projects pushing boundaries towards a smarter and more sustainable future has just published ECHO DA's finalist project for the Hotel Tower and Sky Garden Competition organized by SuperSkyscrapers.

You can see the entry here!

ECHO goes international!

colombia.jpeg

Ajay Chopra's article about his trip to Medellin, Colombia, has been published on El Colombiano, one of the country's major newspapers!

You can find the English version of the article below.

Also, you can look at Ajay's colombian photos here!

" The intention of my trip was to broaden my horizons as an architect and learn from the culture and architecture of Medellín, besides extending my contact network, with the intent to build something for this beautiful city in the future.

I travelled to Medellín with an open mind and no preconceived ideas regarding what to expect. And there were a lot of positive encounters during my visit.

No only there is love, culture and dynamism amongst the things Medellín offers, along with splendid food, with a big variety of flavours, and incredible fruits that I had never tried before, but also the push forward modern architecture was a delight to my eyes.

My first impression was about the way in which the city finds a way to grow between the mountains. The scale of the mountains is constantly reminded me how small one is in reference to the human scale when you are surrounded by the awe of the mountains, it is breathtaking.

As an architect I was amazed by how the contemporary architecture enriches the historic one and the existing culture that one is surrounded by.

When I visited “El Castillo” Museum I was enriched by the beauty of the man-made landscape that offers a picturesque view of the city. “El Castillo” is a luxury building, that reflects the needs of the time in which it was built. Even though I am a modernist architect, I feel enormous respect and appreciation for past architecture and seeing how “El Castillo” maintains its beauty and grace after the years was a great example of how to preserve the history of a city through its buildings.

I visited also the mall “El Tesoro”, and I found it quite unique. Despite its huge scale, it is full of panoramic views that points to the landscape and connect the visitor with the nature of the city while shopping.

Spending time in “Parque Explora” was amazing. Its modern and industrial language is something to learn from, especially through the exhibition.

My favourite

The Teleantioquia office building of “La Libertad” square can be considered as my favourite, because of its scale, the facade elements emphasize its verticality and the volume shifting.

The sculptural architecture of the Botanical Garden surprised me. It was nice to see how the architectural volumes twisted to create an orchid. The series of colonnade structures creates an architecture that provides a light filtered sculpture when seeing the beautiful green trees.

My trips in the “Metrocable” were beautiful and sad at the same time. It was astonishing to witness the incredible beauty of the city from a totally different point of view. Poverty was hard to look at; but in the end, this is the reality.

I was also able to see the new built facilities that represent Medellin’s progress, that was moving in a positive direction.

Upon arriving to the Library “Biblioteca de España”, it was wonderful to see that it was built for the people, for learning and education as I understood. After enjoying the outstanding views, the intention was to blend the building with the landscape and offer a monument to this region of Medellín.

Visiting the exhibition of Fernando Botero’s sculptures was delightful, vibrant and exciting. After seeing his work in the museum that was amazing it was a pleasure to see the Library named after him. The library’s façade had a series of perforations that constantly offer views to the outside space.

Most of the countries would dream about having buildings such as the library, vibrant and inspiring architecture, and a great place to learn. This visit to San Cristóbal was enriching.

The development of modern architecture along the city makes Medellín a must-see place. Everyone should come and experience the architecture, the beautiful and the surreal and beautiful Christmas light show (the time I visited)… and not to forget of course the food!... until next time! "


Kick4Life

Ajay Chopra with Tyson Beckford

Ajay Chopra with Tyson Beckford

On October 23rd, Ajay Chopra attended the kick4life fundraiser event, hosted by Tyson Beckford. This event helps the disadvantaged in Lesotho, Southern Africa. The event alone raised over $25,000 for providing health education and an HIV test for over 2000 orphans to provide ongoing medical treatment. This was a great event to raise awareness and help in saving life's for a good cause, we are proud to help show our support and helping others in need.

Check kick4life's official website and  facebook page for further  details.

We're open again...full speed!

Echo has suffered from Sandy as the rest of the city... but now we are back!

The office re-opened last Thursday (with some hiccups due to the public transportation service..), but now we are fully operational. 

Echo is back in business!

"Art came first. The museum is the chicken"

Last night, the AIANY Rosenblatt Lecture by Craig Dykers from Snohetta was as fun and inspiring as could be. Entitled "Being alone together: managing the Museum as Mausoleum syndrome", Dykers's talk approached what is behind the idea of a Museum, its relationship with Art, and what is its role within society and the landscape.

"Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Well, for me the answer is clear: the egg came first. It simpler. IN the same way, Art came first. The Museum is the chicken". With these simple statement, Dykers explained his view about the relationship between Art and its container, and how two complex elements like these can work together in a direct and clear way.

This idea is reflected in Snohetta's work. The projects discussed during the lecture (mostly museums) are a clear reflection - on paper or stone - of the concept that a museum should bend to the necessity of what will be displayed inside, without being only a mere container but adding value  to Art without competing with it.

A great learning opportunity, and also a very relax couple of hours listening to one of the most humble architects in the history of the planet.

African Metropolitan Architecture - book presentation by David Adjaye

Transient

Last night, Echo attended the presentation of the new book by British architect David Adjaye, African Metropolitan Architecture, at the AIA-NY Center for Architecture.

The book, born from Adjaye's passion and interest for his native land (he was born in Tanzania in 1966), is the result of over 10 years of trips and visits all over the continent. Guided by local taxi drivers (Adjaye met 54 of them during his travels), the author was able to observe a multitude of places through different eyes, with a deliberate matter of fact view. All the pictures and photos in the book are willingly "not-precious", but represent a compendium of all the elements that compose the biggest African cities.

The book is divided by macro-regions, and all the countries within each region share urban and architectural characteristics that relate to the geography and orography of the continent. Each of the major, metropolitan-like cities in every region is presented and analyzed in order to understand the factors that brought it to its present configuration, along with its potential for future growth and transformation.

A very interesting aspect that emerged from this presentation is how African cities are deeply related to their colonial past, but at the same time show a profound relation with their context and environment. A lot of these places still struggle with the compromise between a steady and fast growth, and the will to maintain local heritage and tradition. It will be very interesting to observe how these new "metropolis" will keep growing and developing, and if they'll follow the example of their Arab counterparts (mirroring European and American metropolitan areas) or if they will be able to make their past an essential part of their future.

Anti-bullying cause

Today, Ajay Chopra from Echo Design + Architecture, will be heading out as one of the sponsor's to an event that fights against bullying hoping to raise more awareness and reduce bullying.

EchoDA's Anonymous.d competition entry! Check us out

Last month, EchoDA's participated on one of the Anonymous.d monthly competitions, about a temporary exhibition structure outside a small art gallery in Cooper Square.

Our project was inspired by.... Bruce Lee!! And the movie "Enter the dragon".

Check out the project here!!!

We didn't win, but sure it was a lot of fun!

Checking-in with Ajay Chopra, the Architect Behind foursquare’s New Headquarters; How Napkin-Based Sketch Became High-Profile Design for NYC Technology Company

Here is a little blurb about the new foursquare space

Echo Design + Architecture founder discusses gold crown of design projects, the alluring business of 21st century architecture & the power of thinking inside the box

NEW YORK, Dec. 22, 2011 — Ajay Chopra, a Manhattan-based architect and founder of Echo Design+Architecture, also holds the title of Mayor — but you won’t find him at City Hall. Chopra holds the honorary title of Mayor of Architectural Design for social networking company foursquare. In October, the creators of the popular check-in platform appointed the architect to create a real-world work environment for its flagship offices. The company’s new headquarters will occupy office space at 568 Broadway.

Chopra’s focus for the past two months....

http://www.ereleases.com/pr/checkingin-ajay-chopra-architect-foursquares-headquarters-napkinbased-sketch-highprofile-design-nyc-technology-company-71536

See the napkin sketch!

Ajay

 

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs will be missed R.I.P a true visionary, he has bought quality and made products / designed that have always been at a high standard no one comes close

Voiture Minimum: Le Corbusier and the Automobile by Antonio Amado

One of my favourite all time architects - especially the Modulor thoughts!, not to be confused with Modular. The graphic image below shows a good analysis the kind of stuff Corbu. loves to do

This will be good book to get for those car lovers interested in the classics, an then an architect's, (CORB's!) take on it!

Here's the article:.... Voiture Minimum: Le Corbusier and the Automobile is something different. A few pages in, I realized that I’d been gulled. Corb is in there, but only as a walk-on. Built around a few scrappy sketches from the thirties, Antonio Amado manages to lasso an entire era in which the automobile, not architecture, represented the ultimate design challenge. Think about it. While we take the suburban zeitgeist of SUVs, ATVs, minivans and Rovers for granted, in the 1930s it looked as though it would be the automobile that would transform cities. It would be the automobile that led material culture away from wood and rabbit glue, and it is the automobile that refined and popularized the formal language that today’s Young Turks aspire to apply to their buildings. The tale of Le Corbusier trying to duke it out with the auto industry is a bit like a varsity wrestler trying to make it in the Ultimate Fight Cage. He simply lacked the chops.

But he loved cars! Gatsby had nothing on Le Corbusier,.....

...to Read on Enjoy...http://bit.ly/ojeBHk 


 



75th Anniversary Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater.

Fallingwater

Each year 160,000 visitors travel to Pennsylvania’s scenic Laurel Highlands to visit Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater and to pay homage to America’s most celebrated architect.

Thanks to an impeccable restoration completed in 2002 by the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy(which obtained Fallingwater from the owner Edgar Kaufmann Jr. in 1963), the house appears in near-perfect condition, and tours regale visitors with such entertaining details as which rooms Albert Einstein and artist Frida Khalo slept in during their visits to estate. As a testament to Fallingwater’s prominence in American history, U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar recently nominated the site for inclusion in UNESCO’s World Heritage List.

For the rest of the details please check out link http://bit.ly/r209Gs

Waterfront Promenade Opens In Lower Manhattan

There is some progress in Lower Manhattan to catch some summer sun

blog post photo

The esplanade features a dog park, greenery, and numerous seating options, including wood benches, chaise lounges, stadium-style steps, and elevated bar stools. “We didn’t just want to put in park benches,” said Landscape Architect Ken Smith, who is working with SHoP Architects on the East River Waterfront revitalization project. “We thought about how people sit around a room.”.. heres the rest of the link below http://bit.ly/otYs8E

 

A touch of Pink

The new MacarOn Cafe in midtown gets a new conceptual design for their new bakery / cafe store opening up in New York City. 

Our offices were involved in the conceptual design for this new French Cafe on Madison Avenue.The images below allowed the client to get an idea of the visual branding placement; logo for their new space, in addition a touch of pink that represented their image identity.