Tom AlphinTom Alphin
Tom is the Editor-in-Chief at Brick Architect. He founded the website in 2015 just before releasing his bestselling book The LEGO Architect, which teaches 7 styles of architecture using LEGO bricks. In addition to reviewing new LEGO Architecture sets, he likes to write articles exploring technical aspects of the LEGO hobby including LEGO storage, and the LEGO color palette.

Tom has written 90 stories for Brick Architect.

ᴘʀᴇᴠɪᴇᴡ: #21045 Trafalgar Square

A photo of the upcoming set was released on Facebook in conjunction with a signing event on April 27.

Now that we have an official photo of the latest addition to the LEGO Architecture series, we can explore what the set has to offer. This is the first of two sets slated for a summer release. (Learn about the upcoming #21046 Empire State Building in our earlier article.)

#21045 Trafalgar Square

#21045 Trafalgar Square

Initial Impressions:

My immediate reaction was not entirely positive. I’m worried that the landscaping, fountains, and Nelsons Column distract from the front facade of the National Gallery. I also noticed strong similarities to the recently discontinued #21029 Buckingham Palace set which also places the building behind a fountain, fence and landscaping.

On closer look, there are some clever building techniques being employed which I look forward to building first hand. I have never seen the half-plate staircase technique used in an official set (it typically uses 1×2 or 1×4 panels in a SNOT configuration.) It looks like 1×2 Technic bricks are used for the front steps, allowing 3L Bar to be used for the columns.

The main building is constructed using the same SNOT techniques used for the Buckingham Palace set. I can’t quite tell what part is being used to achieve a ½ plate lip between the first and second story of the building, but look forward to finding out. I’m curious to see how they approached the sloping driveway which integrates nicely with the rest of the set.

If you are in London on April 27th, you can buy it early, and get it signed by designer Rok Žgalin Kobe. (We interviewed him last summer.)

LEGO Architecture pioneer Arthur Gugick’s legacy

Arthur Gugick was killed in a car accident on March 30. He was an early pioneer of intricate fan-made LEGO Architecture creations.

I first learned about his work when I discovered his beautiful re-creation of St Basil’s Cathedral while researching my book. He also built models of Mont-Saint-Michel, the Taj Mahal, and other landmarks.

Arthur Gugick (1960-2019), with his model of St Basil's Cathedral.

Arthur Gugick (1960-2019), with his model of St Basil’s Cathedral.

In addition to LEGO Architecture creations, Arthur made numerous LEGO mosaics, often using printed tiles instead of the more common colored plates or tiles.

The following links highlight his life and legacy:

Summer 2019 LEGO Architecture sets

The summer lineup will include two additions to LEGO Architecture Landmark series.

April 11, 2019: A photo of the upcoming #21045 Trafalgar Square set has been released. Be sure to check it out!

LEGO typically announces their Summer 2019 lineup at the Toy Fair event in Nuremberg, Germany. In last week’s event, they announced two additions to the LEGO Architecture series.

New Sets:

  • #21045 Trafalgar Square, €79.99
  • #21046 Empire State Building, €99.99
Both the 2009 and 2016 versions of the Empire State Building are around 15 cm (6") tall.

Both the 2009 and 2016 versions of the Empire State Building are around 15 cm (6″) tall.

This marks the third time that the Empire State Building will be featured in the Architecture series, having already appeared in #21002 Empire State Building, and as one of the buildings in #21028 New York City. The new version is described as between 30 and 40cm (over 1 foot) tall, which is significantly larger than either of the earlier versions.

Secure access to Brick Architect website.

Brick Architect added a security certificate to make browsing the website more secure.

Lock icon.

Visitors are automatically redirected to the secure version of this website located at https://brickarchitect.com (The “s” stands for secure.)

Benefits of secure websites:

  • Ensures the content you read and text you enter on the site remains private.
  • Instills confidence that you are accessing the genuine Brick Architect site.
  • Signals to new users that Brick Architect is a top quality website that is willing to invest in the latest technologies.
You should see a small “lock” icon to the left of the address bar indicating that the page is secure. If you find a page which shows an “!” icon instead, please let me know by emailing tom@tomalphin.com