Storytelling through Architecture

By Marina Correa Photography: Philippe Ruault; courtesy the architects

The Giraffe Childcare Centre designed by Hondelatte Laporte Architects introduces a dollop of fantasy into the routine lives of suburban Parisian townsfolk-

Niched between a towering structure, next to a neighbourhood built in the 70s and a newly constructed area, it was imperative that the healthcare centre did not -get lost’ within the urban landscape – hence the building is composed of three tiers and each is identified by a unique concrete animal sculpture.

The facades of the building are made out of white corrugated iron that provides a minimal background to the animal sculptures.

Interestingly, each of the south-facing playgrounds is in continuity with the interior spaces; while the urban landscape is animated using a child’s imagination. The wild animal sculptures appropriate a space: a giraffe appears to be peacefully eating the leaves of the trees from the neighbouring park; a polar bear tries to clamber up the steps, while a family of ladybirds climbs the faade in an attempt to reach the interior patio.

Architecture turns into storytelling. The building changes its identity and becomes a landscape in its own right; a metaphor for the urban jungle. The animals and the trees link the building to nature and motion.

Besides infusing a playful and poetic element, this building has also been awarded a green, zero energy efficiency label, making it not just aesthetically appeasing but also one that respects its environment.

Becoming a prominent landmark for the nursery, the affable animal forms transport us to a make-believe world. When pondered upon, definitely a project that goes way beyond the surface to attribute human characteristics and ethos to the emotional, functional routine of a child daycare centre.

to view images click on globalhop.indiaartndesign.com

Common Commercial Real Estate Contract Contingencies

Just like residential real estate contracts, Dallas commercial real estate contracts have their share of contingencies. In short, contingencies are found in most real estate contracts and are essentially escape clauses for both the buyer and the seller.

Each party wants to make sure they are protected in the real estate contract, so real estate contingencies are a common occurrence. They often make the contract much easier to handle for both the buyer and the seller, as it provides them with an opportunity to back out of the contract for a number of reasons.

Although both residential and Dallas commercial real estate contracts both have contingencies, the contingencies themselves are quite a bit different. The following list details some of the common contingencies found in Dallas commercial real estate contracts:

When purchasing a parcel of land for Dallas commercial real estate, the contract may be subject to the approval of the buyers attorney. Because Dallas commercial real estate contracts may be decidedly more in depth than residential real estate contracts, waiting on the approval of your attorney when buying Dallas commercial real estate is quite common. It is also common to have a contingency that is based on a business professionals partner or investor, as it is important to get approval from everyone involved before the contract is finalized.

Many commercial real estate contracts include contingencies that are based on financing approval for the buyer. For tracts of land, this contingency may include approval of a legal survey, if one has not already been done. In addition, a buyer will likely want to include in the purchase agreement some language about obtaining necessary permits and zoning for the commercial property.

When speaking of commercial tracts of land, there may be a contingency with verbiage regarding liens on the property. In particular, the purchase of the land will be contingent on no environmental cleanup liens.

It is common to have a contingency based on: the buyer achieving a loan of at least 75 percent of the purchase price of the Dallas commercial real estate property; the buyer being satisfied with the inspectors report; and the buyer being satisfied that the property can be remodeled or renovated to his or her satisfaction. In other words, the buyer will likely include a series of contingencies based on the use of the commercial property and how it can and cannot be used.

The use of a realtor qualified in commercial real estate is crucial, as he or she will be able to guide you when making a commercial real estate transaction. Real estate companies, like VIP Realty, have a plethora of highly qualified and experienced realtors who have extensive experience in dealing with commercial real estate contracts. It is important to never enter into any type of real estate purchase agreement, whether residential or commercial, without advice from a trusted realtor and real estate attorney, as they will be able to best protect your interest in the real estate transaction.

Choosing a General Contractor for Tenant Improvements

Tenant improvements provide an opportunity to enhance your facility, increase its value and make better use of space. Whether you’re in need of an addition, build-out, renovation or other type of tenant improvement, a qualified general contractor should be the first call you make.

Selecting a State certified general contractor can be a project in itself; however, what you should be looking for is simple. You need a general contractor that offers one point of contact, the ability to complete projects on time, a competitive bid, and the references that prove they can satisfy their customers with a quality project that was finished on time and on budget.

Professional Attitude
A reputable company will rise to the surface in your search for a general contractor. A company with professional attitude and pride in doing a job the right way will shine through in their previous tenant improvement projects. This is why references are important when working with a general contractor. Selecting a company with years of proven experience providing exceptional commercial contracting services throughout the state is ideal. They should be able to provide a host of other satisfied customers that you can contact to learn more about their worth ethic and quality of workmanship.

Unique Solutions
Working with your architect or working directly upon your direction, your general contractor should be able to offer his own insight into the project. Often another set of eyes on a tenant improvement project only improves the outcome when that advice comes from years of experience renovating, performing build-outs and additions. Seasoned general contractors have pretty much seen it all – why not take a few moments to listen to their ideas too?

On Target Estimates
Nothing sets a tenant improvement project back like an unplanned expense. Be sure your general contractor has extensive knowledge of each subcontractor field so that he can provide the most accurate estimates. Being excessively over budget or missing important deadlines is not something with which you want to contend.

The Proven Leader
Implementing tenant improvements, a general contracting company offers a wide range of services from renovations, repairs, build-outs and new construction.
Additionally, be sure that their project management skills are superior. With an experienced work force of carpenters and laborers, they should be able meet any schedule requirement, contract challenge, and everything will be as promised, down to the last detail.

Your contractor should guarantee that their projects will be completed on time, for a competitive price and that their customers will be satisfied with a high-quality, finished construction project.

Reading Serviced Apartments For Business Travellers-00-4173

A spotlight was shone on Reading last month when Laura Marling, who went to school there, won a Brit award for best female solo artist. Shes not the only creative success the town has spawned: Reading and surrounding areas have been home to Kate Winslet, Charlie Brooker, Ricky Gervais and Kenneth Branagh. Further back, former residents include literary luminaries Alexander Pope and Jane Austen.

Reading has attracted illustrious residents throughout its long history because of the high standard of living it provides, as well as its location. For the same reasons, the town is one of the UKs most popular destinations for business travellers. Because it lacks a developed tourist industry, there is a dearth of hotel accommodation in the area and the serviced apartments Reading has to offer are becoming an extremely popular alternative choice.

Why is Reading so popular among business visitors? Firstly, although the contemporary architecture in the town centre makes Reading seem a thoroughly modern town, its been an important business centre for centuries. Originally the site of an important market, it became a centre of the brewing industry in the 18th century. Now, Reading is home to offices of an incredible number of high tech companies, from Fujitsu, Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft to Virgin Media, Bang & Olufsen and Cisco. There are also a number of accounting firms with offices in the town. Because of its relatively small size, the serviced apartments Reading has to offer are within easy walking distance of all of the towns main business areas.

Readings excellent transport links are also a key part of its popularity. From the central railway station, residents or visitors can travel to London in 30 minutes, as well as numerous other cities across the country. Theres also a railway link bus service to Heathrow Airport, which takes around half an hour. The town has an extensive public transport system, and all of the serviced apartments Reading has to offer are near transport links of some kind.

The town also has excellent shopping facilities: in particular, the striking Oracle shopping centre, which crosses the River Kennet, attracts visitors from across Berkshire. There are also regular farmers markets in the area. Because Reading serviced apartments provide guests with cooking facilities, they can make use of these extensive shopping facilities and then have plenty of space to use the goods when they get back.

Guests staying in one of the serviced apartments Reading has to offer can drive into the countryside in minutes to visit traditional pubs or local villages. Quiet spots in the town centre, meanwhile, include Forbury Gardens and Reading Abbey. Of course, the towns history as a brewing centre means there are a number of popular pubs in the area, and the Reading CAMRA Beer and Cider Festival, which takes place every April, provides a different way for business visitors to unwind.

Housetech Developments Why The Brazilian Real Estate Market Is A Solid Investment

The Brazilian Real Estate Market, both residential and commercial, has attracted phenomenal attention over recent years and Brazil property is currently considered one of the strongest markets in the world. The Brazilian middle-class has experienced vast changes in terms of lifestyle and Brazil property prices continue to soar at a staggering rate.

The growth has been so extreme that Brazil property prices, particularly in major cities such as Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, can rival prices in more glamorous locations such as New York and Paris in terms of affordability and the availability of rental properties.

To put things in perspective for investors looking to capitalise on Brazil investment opportunities, the price of a basic apartment with little or no view costs as much in Brazils elite neighbourhoods as it does in prime locations across New York, Paris and London.

Whats drawing investors from around the world to invest in Brazil property in the current climate is the rental returns. As investors buy up property in Brazil they are able to rent out accommodation to a market of 7 million people who are currently searching for a home in Brazil. Investors are also able to target the tourism market, offering holidaymakers a place to stay during busy holiday periods.

Outside of the residential market, Brazil investment opportunities expand into the commercial real estate sector, with investors identifying commercial property in urban centres, such as Sao Paolo, as goldmines for profitability in terms of rental returns.

Housetech Developments CEO, Waseem Saddique, comments: The Brazilian Real Estate Market as a whole continues to boom and the majority of property experts acknowledge that Brazil property represents a solid investment for investors around the globe.

However, a number of sceptics have questioned the sustainability of such growth, suggesting that the Brazilian Real Estate Market has entered into a bubble with potential disaster on the horizon.

Yet, the Brazil property market continues to defy the sceptics and the majority of property experts say that suggestions that the Brazilian Real Estate Market has entered a bubble, are unfounded, circumstantial at best and borne out of scaremongering tactics targeted at overseas investors as home-grown Brazilian property investors look to oust the competition in order to land the best properties.

What is clear is that the competition to get involved in the Brazilian Real Estate Market is fierce and that only looks more likely to increase over the coming years as investors look to profit from upcoming events that include the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Olympics. With that in mind the market in its present state can be defined as truly solid.

Hiring A Plumbing Contractor Few Things To Keep An Eye Out For

A DIY Approach For Plumbing Work – Is It Right?

Plumbing is one task where none of the homeowners should ever take a DIY approach as it’s a specialized job and so can only be performed by skilled and experienced professionals. When it comes to dealing with your plumbing task, you cannot really afford to hire the wrong professional. One small mistake and your boiling system will stop working.

Important Aspects To Consider When Looking For A Plumber

There are three most essential aspects to consider when you are looking for a professional for your plumbing project. The three essential aspects are: Reputation of the plumber, work-experience and customer service. One of the best ways to find a reliable plumbing contractor is always by word of mouth recommendations.

If your neighbors had a good experienced with the plumber, you can also them to give the contact details of the plumber. When checking the reviews and recommendations, here are some of the following things to consider:-

Licensed & Insured

This is an important criterion which may vary from state to state, but you should always make sure that the professional you have chosen has the license of the particular state to do the task. If you fail to hire a licensed professional, you won’t be able to get the desired results. Always ask your plumber to show you the license proof before you hire them for the task. In case, they fail to show you the proof, move on.

Client-Testimonials

A reputed, established and experienced plumbing contractor has positive customer reviews published on the website or you may also check the forums to learn about their services. It’s advisable to get the contact details of the given references and check whether they are genuine or given by some of your plumber’s friend.

Experience

It really doesn’t matter how many boiling systems your plumbing contractor has repaired if you need them for bathroom installation. Most of the experienced plumbers can offer you with all the different services. If you have met a unique plumbing issue, it’s a good idea to look for a professional who have tackled it before.

Exceptional Customer Service

Remember, it’s not only the professional who should offer you with excellent service but it’s the entire company responsible to satisfied you by their services.

Conclusion

Choosing a reliable and trustworthy plumber takes time. Research all the different options before hiring the best professional. Having the right plumber to deal with the emergency is a must if you want to get peace of mind.

Fair Employment And Housing Act (feha) Claims Processes

FEHA claims and hearings usually deal with sexual harassment and other discrimination suits in California.

FEHA or the Fair Employment and Housing Act, is a statute of California which provides protection from employment discrimination based on race, color, national origin, religion, marital status, sex, age and medical condition.

It is a powerful statute that is often used in conjunction with existing federal discrimination laws.

Although it is mostly the same as its federal counterparts, it provides discrimination and harassment victims better avenues in pursuing their claim.

Aside from providing better avenues, it also provides stiffer penalties or punishments that are often not included in the federal discrimination laws.

Some of those are the imposition of attorney fee awards and reimbursement of case related costs.

The FEHA, together with California state laws, also allow the award of punitive damages if the victims are able to prove that corporate directors, officers or managers committed acts of discrimination and harassment, or if they have cultivated a culture where discrimination and harassment is allowed.

Filing a FEHA Claim

Whether youre are seeking to initiate an investigation or filing a lawsuit for harassment or discrimination, the process usually starts with the victim filing a complaint to the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing.

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing is the governing body that enforces the FEHA laws.

The statute of limitation for this type of claim is one year from the incident of harassment or discrimination.

The California Supreme Court though, gave consideration to employees who try to resolve the discrimination issue within the internal grievance and remedy system of the company before filing a FEHA complaint.

The decision was made to remove the confusion on whether the employee should consider resolving the issue internally or just skip it altogether and just file a FEHA complaint to avoid going past the statute of limitation.

Getting a Lawyer

Pursuing a FEHA claim can be very complicated. Choosing whether you would file with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing Act can be confusing.

Filing to either can be useful in investigating discrimination and harassment charges to alert the employer that they should review their policies and do something to curb the problem

If it is a case of wrongful termination though, it would be somewhat useless to report to either agency.

Neither agency has the power to reinstate you to your job or make the employers pay for their unlawful conduct.

Most employment law attorneys advise their clients to use the right to sue system, where you forego the investigation, and move on to filing a civil liability suit against the employer.

This would prove to be a faster route to getting a conclusion on your claim.