BIG special

THE BIG TEAM - Jakob Lange

Bjarke Ingels credits BIG’s enormous success to the creative team he has built around him, and the studio now has partners spread across the world. Each brings something markedly different to the table, as Kim Megson and Magali Robathan find out


Read on turning pages | Download PDF | sign up to CLAD

“I’ve always been a bit of an inventor type,” says Jakob Lange, head of BIG Ideas, BIG’s technology-driven special projects unit.

Lange founded BIG Ideas in 2014, when BIG’s plan to blow smoke rings from the Amager Resource Center hit a brick wall.

“At a partner meeting in Texas, we decided I’d get $15,000 to figure out how to solve the problem,” says Lange. “Within that budget I found the right people and built a prototype that blew steam rings instead of smoke. The moment when we generated the first steam ring was insane. I was screaming out loud – it was impossible to hold back. This was something that had never been done before.”

BIG Ideas’ highest profile project is its work with Virgin Hyperloop One, the LA company racing to build the world’s first high-speed transportation system.

“Our initial role was to be the architect and the designers of the stations and user experience,” he says. “This has developed and we’re now close advisors to Virgin Hyperloop One. We know everything there is to know about the Hyperloop system.”

For Lange, a technology-obsessed, future-orientated inventor, Hyperloop is something of a dream project.

“We’re moving into the realm of shaping the future with Virgin Hyperloop One,” says Lange “Because Hyperloop hasn’t been realised yet, everything we do now will determine what mobility will look like in the future.”

Lange has worked with Ingels since 2003. Right now he’s racking up frequent flier miles for travelling to the Middle East in connection with BIG Ideas’ latest challenge: Mars Science City.

Bjarke Ingels on Jakob Lange
“Jakob has a tinkerer’s attitude: if he doesn’t know how to do something, he’ll look it up and learn it. He has the patience to drill into very specific things and make them work”

Virgin Hyperloop One

United Arab Emirates
COMPLETION DATE: 2021

BIG have teamed up with Virgin Hyperloop One, the LA company racing to be the first to realise Elon Musk’s high speed, pressurised tube transport system.
Last November, BIG and Hyperloop One unveiled joint designs for the transport system in Dubai, as Hyperloop One announced that it had signed a deal with the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority to develop a passenger and cargo network in the United Arab Emirates.

The main objective of BIG’s concept is to eliminate waiting from the passenger experience. Passengers enter portals (stations) where a simple numbering system allows them to quickly identify their departure gate. Passengers will travel in pods that have room for six people and that move on regular roads and can pick up passengers at any point.

The pods are contained within a transporter, a pressure vessel attached to a chassis for levitation and propulsion that can accelerate the transporter to 1,100km/h. Passengers board the next available pod, which moves onto a transporter to their final destination. Different interior environments and seating arrangements offer passengers a travel experience tailored to their needs.

Bjarke Ingels on Jakob Lange
“Jakob has a tinkerer’s attitude: if he doesn’t know how to do something, he’ll look it up and learn it. He has the patience to drill into very specific things and make them work”

Passengers could travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi in 12 minutes
Passengers could travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi in 12 minutes
Passengers could travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi in 12 minutes
Passengers could travel from Dubai to Abu Dhabi in 12 minutes
company profile
Company profile: FaulknerBrowns Architects
The design service we offer extends from initial feasibility studies through all the design stages to completion of the building on site, leading the design team and co-ordinating and managing the client and contractor teams.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
Beat Schenk: The BIG partner on Bjarke Ingels, OMA and VIA 57 West
Beat Schenk
"Bjarke was this young kid, quite brash and totally insane, but with really good energy, directing the team about what to do next."

On meeting Bjarke Ingels at OMA and VIA 57 West

Ingenhoven designed a new five-storey, oval building for the Lanserhof Lans site
Christoph Ingenhoven has championed sustainable architecture for more than 30 years. He is Super Jury member at this year’s World Architecture Festival
"At Lanserhof, you spend your money and it’s difficult and exhausting, but you feel as though you’re doing something very good for yourself and maybe also for others "

How Ingenhoven’s experience as a guest informed the design of the Lanserhof medical spas

The museum consists of four galleries, built into the surrounding sand dunes
Finn Norkjaer
"The Tirpitz Museum is very special. We have created a very clean and simple building, and we’ve been very honest with the materials."

On the Tirpitz Museum and his love of music

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
features
The Enea Tree Museum near Lake Zurich features 50 trees complemented by varied sculptures
ENZO ENEA
"Sociology and functionality are the two most important aspects when we design – how an individual lives and interacts"

On saving trees, working with Zaha Hadid and changing the face of Miami

features
"Architecture is finally sloughing off its obsession with eternity"

Celebrating ephemeral architecture

The 85m-high sloped roof at the Amager Resource Center doubles as a ski slope
Brian Yang
"You can be an intern on your first day and be expected to contribute to the design conversation. That’s something driven strongly by Bjarke."

How the idea of putting a ski slope on a factory roof was born

Ingo Schweder, CEO, Goco Hospitality
"If you look at the amount of money we spend on healthcare in the US, and the amount of disease, we have you’ll understand why a lot of folks are starting to look for alternatives - Steve Nygren, Founder, Serenbe"

The US wellness communities providing a new model for living

cladkit product news
AB Concept partners with House of Tai Ping for luxurious rug collection
The collection was inspired by the idea of looking down at the world from a great height
Lauren Heath-Jones
Design house AB Concept has partnered with bespoke rug specialist Tai Ping to create Nephele, an exclusive line of handcrafted ...
Ma Yansong debuts out of this world furniture collection
Ma Yansong was inspired by science fiction and the possibility of life on Mars
Lauren Heath-Jones
Curation-led design gallery Gallery ALL debuted the MAD Martian Collection at Design Miami. Designed by Ma Yansong, founder and principal ...
Brdr. Krüger to exhibit at IMM Cologne
The Theodor chair was named after studio co-founder Theodor Krüger
Lauren Heath-Jones
Danish furniture company Brdr. Krüger will showcase a range of new and existing pieces at international interiors show, IMM Cologne. ...
cladkit product news
Matteo Thun Atelier create hospitality collection inspired by Mediterranean atmosphere
The collection is designed to integrate with numerous architecture and interior projects across the hospitality sector
Kim Megson
The studio of Italian architect and designer Matteo Thun have produced a new range of wooden furniture designed for everything ...
RIBA North announces winter lineup
RIBA North opens its new season with the Cerámica exhibition
Lauren Heath-Jones
The RIBA North architectural centre in Liverpool, UK, has announced its lineup of events and exhibitions for the winter season. ...
FAÇADE2017 winners
Ramboll was awarded for the Blavatnik Building, Switchouse Extension of the Tate Moder
Lauren Heath-Jones
A trio of British leisure facilities have been honoured in the Façade2017 awards. Established in 2013 by the Society of ...
cladkit product news
HawkinsBrown complete timber pool facility for 'swimming among the trees'
The space has been designed as 'a welcoming retreat that engages with the mature woodland setting through the use of natural materials and colour schemes'
Kim Megson
Architects HawkinsBrown have completed an elegant timber pool hidden among the trees for a school in the English county of ...
Rockin' around the Christmas tree: Lasvit partners with the Upper House hotel and Yabu Pushelberg for bespoke Christmas project
The tree is designed to greet guests with a design and light experience as they enter the hotel
Lauren Heath-Jones
Lasvit has partnered with design firm Yabu Pushelberg to create a bespoke Christmas tree for The Upper House, a boutique ...