Friday, December 11, 2015

This Week In Innovation: 12/07/15 - 12/11/15


We talk a lot about design in the product space but there’s also a lot being done in the internal company space with office design. Arguably one of the most interesting articles this week, Fast Company wrote apiece on a jazzy new tech office design in Montreal. Essentially, a software company by the name of “Lightspeed” is turning an abandoned train station in Montreal into a revamped office building. “Constructed in 1898, the train station was done up like a French chateau. But time wasn't kind to the building and over the decades, it fell into disrepair (thanks, Great Depression). Today it's the site of a $250-million mixed-use redevelopment project that seeks to revive the abandoned structure.” According to the article, the redesign of this location retained “vestiges of the past” while also incorporating rigorous renovations including scraping off layers of tar that coated the bricks. The images of past and present are incredibly stark in contrast and really showcase the unique design of this new office. Check out the article here


When the Highline in NYC became a major attraction, everyone talked about how innovative it was and how unique this was for New York City. Well, that same innovative spirit is now being harnessed to design a “Lowline” in NYC. You heard correctly. According to a Fast Company article, the same concept used for the Highline will be applied for an underground attraction that turns an old trolley stop into an underground wonderland. In order to set up a tester, there will be a pre-opening called the “Lowline Lab” to provide a simple taste of what the Lowline could look and feel like. “The Lab, which is about 5% of the size of actual space, features hundreds of plants and the same innovative system that will be used to bring natural light underground from the street above. That includes three solar collectors on ground level, each programmed by computer to track the Sun's rays. The light is collected into tubes, fed underground, and then dispersed by an elegant roofing panel designed by the Raad Studio, Arup, an engineering firm, and Lorne Whitehead, a physics professor at the University of British Columbia.” According to the article however, the catch with this plan is a lack of funding and permission from the space’s owners. Thinking positively one of the lead architects believes that, if all goes well, this project could be finalized in 2020. I don’t know about you, but as a NYC resident I would love to see this innovative project come to fruition!


After the horrific shootings in San Bernardino California this last week, there was massive news coverage on the issue of gun violence in America. However, many don’t know that the backlash on gun violence does not stem from mass killings like the one in San Bernardino. According to a Fast Company article, the outrage is over the daily shootings that are unlikely to make news. “While the massacres at Charleston, Chattanooga, and San Bernardino grab most of the headlines, the real outrage of gun violence in America isn't the mass killings. It's the daily shootings that may or may not make the local news. Columbine-type events accounted for just 2% of the 33,000 gun-related deaths in 2013.” In collaboration with Slate, “The Trace” (a new site about gun violence in America) mapped out these less-covered events and the results are shocking. This purpose of this map is to show individuals how many incidents involving guns happen around them. I think this was a pretty cool and innovative and interactive way to reach the public on a personal level. Check out the map here and see how close you may have been to numerous incidents.


Nichole Dicharry, is a Digital Marketing Assistant at IIR USA, Marketing and Finance Divisions, who works on various aspects of the industry including social media, marketing analysis and media. She can be reached at Ndicharry@iirusa.com 

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