Thursday, May 29, 2014

The LEGO House

The LEGO House set (4000010) landed at my desk a few weeks ago, and obviously I didn't loose time to build it, as I had my LUG biggest annual event running beginning of this month. It was a great opportunity to show our visitors a brickform preview of the new Mecca for all LEGO fans.

This has a special meaning as I was among the 10 AFOLs across Europe invited for a secret workshop in Billund. So secret that even us didn't know beforehand what was going to happen there!
Well, we were brought to get an insight on some details and preliminary ideas of the project, and to share an AFOL perspective of what we would like the future LEGO House to be (not even the name was definitely chosen at the time).
Of course we are not allowed to share any further details about what was shown an discussed in the workshop, but all that matters you already know.

As you might have heard  TLG decided to build a LEGO Brand House in Billund [1]. A brand symbol and museum or rather the future experience center of LEGO where children and parents from across the world will have fun and informative insight into LEGO play, values and history. A brand house, like other prominent brands did in different parts of the globe, is what the family toy company owner decided to do as a give back to his town to develop and grow - Billund Capital of Children is the dream and vision being chased with this project.

The LEGO House will raise in the center of Billund where the former town hall and other buildings lived before. The demolition works have already finished and the new building is expected to open in 2016.
In the meantime LEGO released this small set, an exclusive for the shops in Billund to sell, as form of gratitude to the local commerce, for the nuisance they will feel during the works.

It took me just a few seconds to think about, which excuse I would use to write about this set here at TBs , since it is not LEGO Technic related, and guess what I came with?
Yes, this is the place where you might want to go someday and visit the vault where you'll see all the relics ever released by LEGO. Including of course the old LEGO Technic and Expert Builder sets you have dreamed with and which probably you will never be able to find anywhere else.Get a glimpse from the concepts below...

... which of course may differ a lot from the actual vault in the future LEGO House we will get and certainly also very different from the current LEGO vault which opens only for certain elected ones [2, 3].

You will need to wait for the opening in 2016 to see what we will actually get.

Below the architectural and interiors concept video produced by BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group) for The LEGO Group, which won the LEGO House project. There you should get a glimpse about what this holy place may turn to be.
Bjarke Ingels is a Danish architect who heads the architectural practice BIG, which he founded in 2006 and is currently established in Copenhagen and New York. Ingels is known for his innovative and ambitious designs and projects and has won numerous architectural competitions and awards. I'm privileged to have attended one of his conferences in Denmark some years ago and to engage in dialog with him and my AFOL fellows about the LEGO House project.

As for the set itself there is a bit more to say than most of any other set this size. This is a 250 part set plus a few spares as usual. Although it comes in a box identical to those from the Architecture theme sets known by everyone, it is not branded as such. It is more like the special sets given by LEGO to employes, devoted to the Moulding, Factory and Production series, which makes sense as this will also be a LEGO building. Even the odd or long reference from this set fits with those. Although this one features a "Special Edition" tag.

Opening the box is rather the same experience as opening one of the Architecture sets. A few polybags with parts and an high quality booklet with the building instructions and some introductory notes about the building itself.
You will notice there is included one exclusive minifig with the building's name in its torso. Another detail that distinguishes this from any Architecture set if still any doubt remained.

As one could expect from this type of set it builds in a relative easy and small number of building steps
No special techniques neither specialized parts present here, but a very pleasant result in the end.
You may feel it a bit weird the presence of a minifig side by side with a model in such a different scale, but I guess this was done to add some level of exclusivity to this set, given the fact it will officially sell only in Billund shops.

It costs 149 Danish Kroner (about 20€ / US$27), but collectors as of today may still find starting at 38€ from BrickLink sellers.

The iconic 2x4 "brick" in the top of the house constitutes the keystone of the building, with which the architects smartly avoided the easy temptations of any further collages between the building forms and the regular brick shapes. It will also be the highest point in Billund where you can enjoy the view!
With such well known pattern on its top, the LEGO House will probably become one of the easiest landmarks to recognize if observed from space. Like the Giza Pyramids or the headquarters from the Bavarian automaker BMW in Munich (Germany), to name a few.

Eager for the opening!

1 comment:

Dave said...

There is a Parts List for this set on Rebrickable ( ), and lots of them for sale on eBay ( ).

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