New Plans (and My Concerns) For the Smithsonian Castle

At the National Building Museum in D.C., there’s a very interesting exhibit by the Danish architects Bjarke Ingels (‘BIG’) who will be redesigning the Smithsonian Castle Garden, which displays, hanging from the second floor of the museum, many of their projects including the Smithsonian revamp. Below are some pictures of their design, but before that I have some concerns.

It’s a very interesting design, and it will look good. But the problem is, like much modern architecture it looks like it will have to be heavily maintained. There’s a lot of glass and plastic skylights. Unlike brick or sandstone, it won’t age well, requiring frequent repairs. If there is one constant in governmental budgeting, it is this: maintenance budgets are always the first to be cut when the inevitable cuts occur. I hope I’m wrong.

Anyway, pictures. The large view:

Castle plans

Note the swoops by the castle as well as the skylights surrounding the garden. Some of the illustrations:

Castle plans

Castle plans

Castle plans

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