MTN – Getting started

My first contribution to the Big Builders project was a model of 79&PARK in Stockholm. For my second model, I have chosen one of the most iconic designs by Bjarke Ingels: The Mountain – a residential structure in Copenhagen completed in 2007.

In the description of the building, BIG states:

How do you combine the splendours of the suburban backyard with the social intensity of urban density? The Mountain Dwellings are the 2nd generation of the VM Houses – same client, same size and same street. The program, however, is 2/3 parking and 1/3 living. What if the parking area became the base upon which to place terraced housing – like a concrete hillside covered by a thin layer of housing, cascading from the 11th floor to the street edge? Rather than doing two separate buildings next to each other – a parking and a housing block – we decided to merge the two functions into a symbiotic relationship.

Project description on BIG’s website

Project description on Arch Daily

With a parking garage, terraced housing on top, a picture of Mount Everest on the facade, multiple colors on the various levels, lots of greenery and all apartments turned 45 degrees compared to the outer walls, this structure is a great challenge to build in microscale using LEGO bricks!

Initial design

Having received all background material from BIG (floor plans, pictures etc.), my first step was to experiment with some of the basic elements of the model: The height of each floor, size of each apartment, available window elements and colors. The real building is constructed on a grid of columns separated by 10 meters and deciding on the model grid size would define the scale of the entire building. Using an 8×8 plate for each of the 10×10 m grids results in a distance between each floor of almost exactly 7 plates, corresponding to a plate for the floor and a 1x2x2 Window Frame for all the windows. The scale becomes 1:156 and also fits perfectly with the trophy figures as seen on the prototype below where two apartments have been stacked on top of each other at an offset.

In the previous model of 79&Park, the distance between the levels was only 5 plates (1:225) so the MTN model will be substantially larger. The ground plan is 80 x 96 studs (including surrounding pedestrian areas) and the model will be built and transported in one piece.

As for the color selection, the only real decision was the color of the wooden facade. Allthough Dark Tan would have matched the actual color better, Tan was selected because of the larger part selection, especially the 1x2x2 Window Frame. Dark tan is used for the terraces for contrast. In the picture above, I also tried regular Brown for the wooden panels, but that was simply too dark.

The rest of the design process was done with pencil, ruler and checkered paper and some help from a LEGO mosaic maker program for the facade picture of Mt. Everest (more on that in a future post).

Having received the bricks for the project (including a lot of bricks and plates with a 45 degree angle included), the construction has now begun, starting with the base and the parking garage. So far, it looks pretty grey.

The 10x10m grid can be seen on the drawings in the picture above and the picture below shows the real life parking garage.

79&PARK – The final model

The YouTube video below presents the final model, comparing the LEGO version to the visualizations of the actual building. I am very satisfied with the end result.

Below are images with various angles and light. I particularly like the last image imitating the sunset with large shadows.

The professional images were shot at the studios of Trendshots.dk, who specialize in product images for webshops. The pictures below show the process. Each of the final pictures is composed of three images with varying focus and has been cleared of any background noise and clutter.

As can be seen on the picture above, the model sits on top of a turn table which allowed us to take a 360 degree image of the model. Click the image below to see the model turn.

http://360.trendshots.dk/jonas/lego/1.aspx

The model is currently on display in the foyer of LEGO House in Billund alongside all the other buildings in the BIG Builders project. It can be seen in its own display case in the back of the picture.

8-TALLET

Pictures from the exhibition in LEGO House

I have built the 8-house. This is situated in Amager, Denmark, not so far from my home. I ikke to be able to visit the building in real life, when I build it in LEGO.
I had made some “trial and error” building of smaller sections of the building during autumn 2017, but the main work took place from February to April 2018. It was a challanging building to work with and It took some time to understand the building construction. But is has also been an educational process, and I am happy to have been a part of this project.
Trine

2WTC – 2 World Trade Center

Two World Trade Center is finished! 

The model stands roughly 65 cm tall and consists of approximately 8,600 pieces.  At 1:650 scale, it is consistent with all the models in my body of work.
As you can see, the façade of the model consists mostly of transparent elements.  Behind this outer layer, the inside is almost completely made up of medium blue bricks and plates, which give the model its beautiful bluish color, as if it’s reflecting the sky.
 
Each of the six rooftop terraces created by the stacking setbacks of the building are sprinkled with green elements to represent trees and grass.  This gives the model a very organic appearance and enhances the dynamic nature of the stacking effect.
 
Depending on where you view the model, you might be surprised that you’re still looking at the same building!
  
The seven stacked masses give the overall model a truly unique appearance, one that will certainly turn heads once the real building is completed in New York.
 
       
The model also features detailed landscaping at the street level
The greenery encircles the building and surrounds the open glazing of the lobby.
 
Also included in the model are the various satellite arrays within the parapet at rooftop level.  A couple of these satellites make use of minifigure hockey mask visors for the curved dishes!
 
A final view of the model shows how all seven sections stack seamlessly together along a single 2×2 spine.  This spine starts within the base of the model, and every section simply slides into place on top of one another, all the way to the top.
 
I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing this project come to life as much as I’ve enjoyed designing and building it!  I will be traveling to Billund to install the model in the LEGO House on Thursday, April 26 with the rest of the BIG Buildings Exhibition.  I look forward to having it on display as well as seeing all the other incredible models that will be a part of this exhibition!

79&PARK – Finishing Touches

My LEGO model of 79&PARK is now complete and ready to be displayed in LEGO House in Billund, Denmark in April. I need to find time to take some decent photos before showing the full model.

The finishing touches included the inner courtyard which is largely based on this one photo from the project material.

The courtyard is somewhat more colorful than the roof terraces so I added a few extra colors to represent flowers including lime green and dark yellow. The main path through the courtyard is kept in light gray to match with the sidewalk.

Finally, the streets and alleys surrounding the building were designed. The site is rectangular except for one side and has streets on two sides. The greenery is taken from the below reference picture.

The streets are built in four sections corresponding to the four sides. They slide under the building and attach to each other with Technic pins. They are not attached to the building, however, which allows some flexibility to position the  building in the exact 45 degree angle.

Building the angled street was the most challenging. I ended up with a technique using rotated 1×1 bricks with stud on one side, clips and bars to ensure the right angle and distance between the sidewalk and the street as seen below.

The final street, with some splashes of dark yellow flowers.

I did experiment using some of the other part options for greenery on the final model (see previous post on greenery) but I decided to keep my initial choice using only the olive green and brown flower stem parts for trees and green and light green flowers for leaves all over the model. This gives some, but not too much, variation.

Similarly, I experimented with other grille colors for the lamellas but kept the original brown choice as it looked best. Quite possibly because I had gotten used to that color during the building process.

Stay tuned for photos of the finished model!

HUA – Hualien Residences

A LEGO model of HUA will be build by ZiO Chao, Hsinwei Chi, and Kimura Hsieh.

In the description of the building, BIG states:

Hualien is a rapidly developing city located in the middle portion of Taiwan’s East coast. TLDC, a prominent land developer based in Taipei, has recently obtained license to turn what used to be an industrial and factory region into a world class beach resort. The site is located prominently along the coast and near the intersection of two river deltas. Taiwan’s spine of    ountains can be seen to the west while the coast is to the east; Hualien city is to the north.

For the masterplan, a language of green landscape stripes is used to create a mountain landscape of commercial and residential program that reflect their natural counterparts in the background. The stripes run east-west to frame the best views while also becoming an optimal shading system for Taiwan’s hot and humid tropical climate. High glare, low angle morning and evening sun is effortlessly blocked by the stripes while favorable north-south light is allowed into the units. Green roofs further mitigate heat gain and combined with the striping create a low energy masterplan.

Our layout is in modules, it can be separated to 14 sections and doze of baseplates. Our project model is close to be completed, but now we still have some detail to modify. Our model is about 145*145*40 (cm)