Extremely useful! Maps show the best coffee shops by subway stops
Urban explorer Bradley Garrett documents his adventures dodging guards and documenting sites in a new book. These are some of his best photos.
Cyclists who use bikesharing programs are much less likely to wear helmets than people who ride their own bikes. A team of designers in London has come up with a solution: Temporary helmets you can throw away. But are they really safer?
The London Underground commemorated its 150th anniversary with a quintet of maps made of Lego. But the creative display was built for more than fun and games. It shows how the network—the world’s first underground passenger railway—has evolved in a century and a half.
[Images: Instagram Users Krey47]
Apparently, Google+ isn’t useless to brands.
Here’s the live video window Topshop and Google+ designed for London Fashion Week.
A new video about the history and present state of London’s famed amateur boxing club, The Fitzroy Lodge, shows the value of teaching discipline and control (and how to knock somebody out).
Will London become the first city with commuter swim lanes?
The search giant is known for its playful, unconventional workspaces—perhaps intended to offset its fairly Vader-esque public image, and certainly, to sweeten the deal for young, in-demand engineers who may be juggling other offers. In Pittsburgh, Googlers enjoy an industrial theme and slides. In Zurich, it’s birch trees and meeting cocoons. Meanwhile, in London, Google has two established offices—one is industrial chic, the other, a space-age white box. Now, a third office—a “Super HQ”—has opened on the eighth floor of Central Saint Giles, the Renzo Piano-designed tower in Covent Garden.
Plunge, a project from artist Michael Pinsky, features blue LED lights placed around prominent central London monuments, with each light marking the sea level 1,000 years from now (92 feet above sea level using a “business as usual” scenario). Remember: this kind of rapid sea-level rise could happen sooner. We just don’t know.
London’s Futuristic New Double-Decker Bus Hits The Streets
If you’ve taken the Tube, walked around central London, or sipped a pint in a British pub, you’ve seen the work of Design Research Unit, whose methods presaged the design mega-firms.
There’s an eternal tension between contemporary architecture and its (older) surroundings, with the former perpetually lambasted for neglecting to conform to the character of the latter. A clever new facade by the UK lighting designers Jason Bruges Studio would appear to sidestep the issue entirely: it throws the neighborhood straight onto the side of the building.
The facade enshrouds the new W Hotel in London’s bustling Leicester Square, and it’s designed to take images from the local environs and convert them into a dazzling abstract light show.
How it works: Eight cameras mounted on the hotel roof snap pictures of the adjacent buildings and skyline every minute, night and day. Custom software then stitches the photographs together into panoramic images that are then compressed into a 2-minute film. Finally, the film is recreated on the facade, which is made up of 600 lights diffused through fritted glass.
The coolest thing about the facade is that it’s like a perpetual diary of the area, recording the changing lights and colors and mood 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. No two days are precisely the same. Visit on a clear night in mid-June, and the lights will look fresh and summery; visit around Chinese New Year, and they’ll be awash in theatrical red. For a part of the city with lots of history and character to spare, it’s about as close as a chain hotel in a glassy modern building can get to visual harmony.
Extra bright in here. More photos (and video!) at the website.
Google’s new London office is, frankly, stunning. And they have a complimentary Asian-fusion restaurant to boot!