Gallery: Is Rafael Viñoly’s $44.3 Million Firstsite Arts Center Green?

 
A flurry of criticism flooded the blogosphere after the opening of Rafael Viñoly Architect's Firstsite Arts Center in Colchester last month. Critics complained that the project was late and that it cost $15.8 million more than it should have. Some called the 41,000 square foot mixed-use development a golden banana, other's called it a golden blunder. But hardly anybody took the time to find out what efforts had been made to reduce the project's environmental impact. So we contacted the designers directly to clear up the matter, and this is what we learned.

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  1. Hamiltonandy October 17, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    Contrary to the article lighting is used even during good daylight. The original concealed lighting has been mostly replaced by spotlamps. The fluorescent light fittings in some rooms are very intrusive. Who would put a three pin socket on the ceiling!
    .
    This carbuncle is, despite assertions by Colchester Council, structurally deficient. The building desiogn was too complex to computer model properly. So to stop the roof sagging near the entrance lots of reinforcement was needed.
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    The allegedly corrosion proof ali/copper roof is somewhat vulnerable to the weather and any iron fillings corrode it. The iron originally came from the roof installers using steel tools.
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    The majority of locals opposed it even before it was built. Now it has cost £28million to build of public money, plus a £1.2million annual public subsidy, very few look forward to seeing this mostrosity defacing our historic town.

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