2006-02-03 陶弘興訪波士頓 at MIT's  Stata (computer science) Center in Cambridge,  designed by architect Frank Gehry (comp. spring of 2004).

MIT sues Gehry, citing leaks in $300m complex
Blames famed architect for flaws at Stata Center
November 6, 2007

美國名校麻省理工學院把著名建築設計師弗蘭克格裏告上法庭,指控後者為學院設計的斯塔塔中心存在嚴重設計缺陷,致使建築出現局部裂縫併發霉。

格裏是世界著名建築設計師,主要作品包括西班牙古根海姆博物館和洛杉磯沃爾特迪斯尼音樂廳。他為麻省理工學院設計的斯塔塔中心以角度奇特的外部結構聞名於世。

美聯社6日報道,麻省理工學院在10月31日遞交給波士頓薩福克高等法院的起訴書中說,斯塔塔中心2004年春季建成後不久,室外階梯教室就因排水問題出現裂縫,由於採用材質不當,現在斯塔塔中心外墻上已經發黴,影響了外觀。更加嚴重的問題是,一旦出現下雪天氣,積雪和結冰會在窗口和屋頂上堆積起來,堵塞逃生的通道。麻省理工學院表示,該中心設計上存在"永久缺陷"。

起訴書說:"格裏提供了有缺陷的建築設計圖,未能履行責任。"麻省理工學院在起訴書中點明承建這一建築的是美國斯堪斯卡建築公司。這一公司副執行總裁、美國區總經理保羅休因斯說,開工前,斯堪斯卡公司曾警告格裏,階梯教室設計存在缺陷,但格裏不以為然。"這不是建造問題,從來都不是。"休因斯說。

斯塔塔中心是一座綜合教學樓,建築面積4萬平方米。樓內設有圖書館、教室、辦公室和會議室等。學院為此向"格裏夥伴"公司支付了1500萬美元設計費,整個工程耗資3億美元。目前,格裏和他的合夥人沒有對外發表任何評論。由於案子尚未結束,麻省理工學院的發言人也表示不願過多開口。

在這幢建築交付使用後,哈佛大學城市規劃和設計教授傑羅德凱頓曾說:"這是麻省理工學院用他們特殊的語言宣告,他們將向世界敞開思想。"

鏈結:外形像個"大玩具盒"

斯塔塔中心坐落在麻省理工學院東北角,造型新穎奇特,2004年竣工後,成為麻省的新的地理坐標。它由兩座C形塔型主建築組成,中間由幾座略低的樓層連接,整座建築空間開闊,但卻完全擺脫傳統的建築模式。格裏解釋說:"它就像一個頑皮的孩子正拿著一把斧頭向你的模特砍來。"

該中心外表像迪斯尼樂園,色彩鮮艷,造型可愛。建築物裏有鋁制的圓餅,不銹鋼和橘黃色磚石砌成的小塔,還有許多大小不一的筒形、方形和圓錐形積木玩具模型。理工學院時任負責人查理斯維斯特說:"那是一個大玩具盒,就等著人們去玩了。"

格裏設計這座建築的主導思想是"使發明成為一種快樂。"但有人評價這幢建築看上去"像一群喝醉了的機器人在尋歡作樂"。

人物: 前衛大膽的設計師拿過建築界頂級大獎

1989年,60歲的弗蘭克格裏曾榮獲國際建築界的頂級大獎普利茨克建築獎。格裏的建築向來以前衛、大膽著稱,其反叛性的設計風格不僅顛覆了幾乎全部經典建築美學原則,也橫掃現代建築的清規戒律。

深受洛杉磯城市文化特質及當地激進藝術家的影響,格裏在設計中往往採取拼貼、混雜、並置、錯位、模糊邊界等各種手段,挑戰人們既定的建築價值觀和被束縛的想像力。其作品在建築界不斷引發軒然大波,愛之者譽之為天才,恨之者毀之為垃圾,格裏則依然我行我素.

雖然格里有"建築界畢加索"的美譽,但他的設計作品經常引起爭議和批評,此前也曾引起糾紛。1986年,他為加州大學工程學系興建一座新大樓,因為出現嚴重漏水,要整座拆卸。而他為俄亥俄州卡斯‧西方儲備大學管理學院設計新校舍,竟然超支一倍。

MIT sues Gehry, citing leaks in $300m complex
Blames famed architect for flaws at Stata Center

By Shelley Murphy
Boston Globe Staff / November 6, 2007

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has filed a negligence suit against world-renowned architect Frank Gehry, charging that flaws in his design of the $300 million Stata Center in Cambridge, one of the most celebrated works of architecture unveiled in years, caused leaks to spring, masonry to crack, mold to grow, and drainage to back up.

more stories like thisThe suit says that MIT paid Los Angeles-based Gehry Partners $15 million to design the Stata Center, which was hailed by critics as innovative and eye-catching with its unconventional walls and radical angles. But soon after its completion in spring 2004, the center's outdoor amphitheater began to crack due to drainage problems, the suit says. Snow and ice cascaded dangerously from window boxes and other projecting roof areas, blocking emergency exits and damaging other parts of the building, according to the suit. Mold grew on the center's brick exterior, the suit says, and there were persistent leaks throughout the building.

The suit says it cost MIT more than $1.5 million to hire another company to rebuild the amphitheater, with new bricks, seats, and a new drainage system.

The institute alleges that both Gehry Partners and the construction company, New Jersey-based Beacon Skanska Construction Company, now known as Skanska USA Building Inc., violated their contracts with MIT and are responsible for construction and design failures on the project. The 400,000-square-foot Ray and Maria Stata Center, on Vassar Street, also houses labs, offices, classrooms, and meeting rooms, and features a "street" that winds through the ground floor.

"Gehry breached its duties by providing deficient design services and drawings," says the suit, which was filed in Suffolk Superior Court in Boston on Oct. 31 and seeks unspecified damages for costs and expenses incurred by MIT.

Gehry Partners did not respond to repeated calls and e-mail yesterday from the Globe. A spokesman for MIT declined to comment because of the pending lawsuit.

An executive at Skanska's Boston office yesterday blamed Gehry for problems with the project and said Gehry ignored warnings from Skanska and a consulting company prior to construction that there were flaws in his design of the amphitheater.

"This is not a construction issue, never has been," said Paul Hewins, executive vice president and area general manager of Skanska USA. He said Gehry rejected Skanska's formal request to create a design that included soft joints and a drainage system in the amphitheater, and "we were told to proceed with the original design."

After the amphitheater began cracking and flooding, Skanska spent "a few hundred thousand dollars" trying to resolve the problems, but, he said, "it was difficult to make the original design work."

He said Skanska, which built Gillette Stadium, the State Street Financial Center, and Terminal A at Logan International Airport, tried to work with MIT, and attended mediation with the university, but was unable to resolve all issues.

Hewins said two consulting firms hired by MIT agreed with Skanska's assessment that Gehry's initial design was flawed and that the amphitheater had to be completely rebuilt.

more stories like this"We worked hard to work with MIT to bring this to resolution . . . but it was a design issue," Hewins said.

"It really is a disaster," said former Boston University president John Silber, who sharply criticizes the Stata Center's design in a new book, "Architecture of the Absurd: How 'Genius' Disfigured a Practical Art."

After learning of the lawsuit yesterday, Silber said Gehry "thinks of himself as an artist, as a sculptor. But the trouble is you don't live in a sculpture and users have to live in this building."

Gehry, one of the world's most famous architects, designed the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, one of the most acclaimed architectural structures of the 1990s; the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles; and the recently completed IAC/InterActive Corp headquarters in New York.

Gehry is not the first famous architect to be sued over the design of a local landmark. I.M. Pei and Partners, the architects who designed the 60-story John Hancock Tower, were sued, along with a handful of contractors and engineers, after panes of glass began popping out of the Back Bay building and crashing onto the street below during its construction in the 1970s. It drew worldwide publicity as "The Plywood skyscraper" when its glass was temporarily replaced with wood. The case was settled out of court.

Robert Campbell, an architect who is a critic for the Globe, said it is inevitable that there will be problems in any unconventional building like the Stata Center, which has roofs colliding at different, odd angles.

"It looks like something out of a Disney cartoon," Campbell said. "It's really quite pleasurable and people like it, but it does involve some risks in that it's impossible to keep it from leaking."

In its suit, MIT said it wanted to create a complex of buildings on the nearly 3-acre site along Vassar Street designed to "catalyze interactions and innovations among MIT's faculty and students in computing, information science, artificial intelligence, and linguistics and philosophy."

The result, Campbell said, helped to break up the monotony of a street of concrete buildings.

"Because he's so daring, you figure you've got to be daring, too, if you're a client," Campbell said. "You know if you hire Frank Gehry there are going to be new kinds of problems." But he said clients accept the risks because "they'll get a building like no other building."

Copyright 2007 Globe Newspaper Company.