Structure As Architecture: A Source Book for Architects and Structural Engineers, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover

Structure As Architecture

A Source Book for Architects and Structural Engineers, 2nd Edition

By Andrew Charleson


238 pages | 470 Color Illus.

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Structure as Architecture presents a comprehensive analysis of the indispensable role of structure in architecture. An exploration, as well as a celebration, of structure, the book draws on a series of design studies and case study examples to illustrate how structure can be employed to realize a wide range of concepts in contemporary architecture. By examining design principles that relate to both architecture and structural engineering, Andrew Charleson provides new insights into the relationship between both the technical and aesthetic aspects of architecture.

Now in its second edition, the text has been extensively revised and updated throughout. Features include:

  • A brand new chapter on hidden structure, adding to the material on exposed structures
  • Two new chapters on using structure to realise common architectural concepts through a combination of precedents and creative design
  • Over 50 new case studies from across the globe
  • Easy-to-understand diagrams and a highly visual design to aid understanding and accessibility

More than two hundred case studies of contemporary buildings from countries such as the UK, the US, France, Germany, Spain, Hong Kong, Australia and Japan illustrate how a thorough integration of structure adds layers of richness and enhances the realisation of architectural design concepts.


Structure As Architecture cuts to the heart of the architectural and engineering relationship. This book explores how form and function blend, where structural and architectural concepts interweave and support each other for a technically and aesthetically enhanced work. Andrew Charleson demonstrates his holistic approach to architecture and engineering through stunning case studies where designers seamlessly and elegantly blend structural engineering with the architect’s design intent. As a structural engineer and architect, I truly believe this book is a must-read.’ - Holger S. Schulze Ehring, Structural Designer, New York City

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements Preface 1. Introduction 2. Two building studies 3. Relationships between architectural and structural form 4. Building exterior 5. Building function 6. Interior structure 7. Structural detailing 8. Structure and light 9. Representation and symbolism 10. Hidden structures 11. Expressing architectural concepts 12. Fascilitating architectural concepts 13. Conclusions Index and bibliography of buildings Index

About the Author

Andrew Charleson has visited, photographed and analysed almost all of the case-study buildings. He is an Associate Professor at the School of Architecture, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. Bringing over forty years structural engineering experience to the topic, he has also authored the book Seismic Design for Architects: Outwitting the Quake and published many papers, not only related to the subject of this book, but also to his other areas of research interest, earthquake engineering and earthquake architecture.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
ARCHITECTURE / Design, Drafting, Drawing & Presentation
ARCHITECTURE / Methods & Materials
ARCHITECTURE / Study & Teaching