Concrete ahoy

To watch a video of the event, go to


ZZZ078_N376_medium.jpgIn June, Concrete Elegance explores the use of exposed in-situ concrete in two split-level residential projects by developer Roger Zogolovitch. Mole Architects’ The Houseboat in Poole (left) and Weston Street in London (right), designed by AHMM use a variety of techniques for creating surface texture, including exposed aggregate and timber boardmarking.

Concrete Elegance takes place on 26 June at the Building Centre in London.

To book a place, visit


Final Frame: Rai Amsterdam car park

Bethem Crouwel Architects has created a car park in Amsterdam that doubles as a flexible space for conventions and exhibitions.The 30m-high building at the RAI Amsterdam Exhibition and Convention Centre consists of a simple, rectangular building and two helix-shaped ramps that spiral upwards. These towers are built from precast concrete sections cantilevering off a central core. Lit with blue LEDs at night, they have already become a local landmark.

Photo: Jannes Linders

From the archive: Winter 1948


The early issues of CQ were focused on one thing above all else: power. By the end of 1948, the first four had reported on two modernised collieries, three hydro-electric dams and four power stations. Of these, Ham Halls B station in Birmingham was easily the most imposing. The hyperbolic cooling tower was probably the most iconic concrete form of the 20th century and the four here were at the time the largest in the world: each as tall as Giles Gilbert Scott’s mighty Liverpool Cathedral and with the capacity to cool 4 million gallons of water an hour.

The numbers involved in the construction of Hams Hall must have made astonishing reading in austerity-stricken post-war Britain. It was designed to produce 300,000 kilowatts of electrical power, for which it needed up to 8,000 tonnes of coal a day. CQ could not help but compare this with the “meagre allocation” of the rationed British family. It also marvelled at the cost, an estimated £10.5m. “Perhaps you find these figures too mighty for meaning? Then try it this way! A man earning £500 a year would have to have started working nearly 20,000 years before the beginning of the Christian era to earn that amount. Does that make it easier?”

In 2017, CQ is celebrating its 70th anniversary. Find out more, and access the full archive, at

Access the full CQ archive here