[Picture of Norman Foster]I am going to argue here that Sir Norman Foster is the number one architect in the world today, with an unprecedented track record of instantly recognisable buildings that enrich and excite and basically go against the grain of the present architectural and planning trends.

It all started when, in the mid-1980s, Norman Foster became famous. Read the rest of this entry »

The Most Important Building In Scotland


[Picture of Clyde Auditorium]Architects tend to favour form over function because they know function changes over time. They know that a building’s occupants and owners will change, and over the years, the building will be inevitably adapted, decorated, used and even abused.

That a radical design will affect the locale, and influence (or at least inform) other architectural designs elsewhere, is quite a responsibility when you think about it — it is not just about the owners or users of the building, but the fact that it is seen by so many people in all weathers and in every season and that it takes on certain mythical traits. This sort of thing starts with the tradesmen who take ownership and possession of the building (“That’s one of my jobs”), and goes on through to the future historian who declares it’s significance. Read the rest of this entry »

The Millau


[Picture of Millau Viaduct]In the south of France, there is a deep 2 km wide valley in the Massif Central Mountain Range at Aveyron divided by the River Tarn. The French government decided an alternative to the nearly saturated Rhône Valley route was needed — as well as a solution to the notorious N9 Millau bottleneck — and so they approved the idea proposed by the owners ‘Compagnie Eiffage du Millau Viaduct’ (CEVM) and the client ‘SETEC’ to cross the Tarn gorges by a viaduct/ road bridge, saving 30 minutes under normal conditions and up to almost 4 hours on some weekends in the summer. Read the rest of this entry »