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Today’s News - Friday, June 12, 2009

•   Trying to figure out why New Urbanism has become "the object of hostility and condescension."

•   A proposed New Urbanist waterfront community in the Bay Area is a prime example.

•   A surprise score in the Chelsea Barracks battle, it's now Charles - 1, Rogers - 0 (even though Westminster Council approved it yesterday; adding salt to the wound: Prince's Foundation will be involved in the redesign).

•   Mo' bad news: Jahn no longer designing Salvation Army's Kroc Center in Chicago: his design is being "swapped" for a more economical one (just whose we don't know yet).

•   On a happier note, Wilkinson lends his expert eye to pick "The World's Coolest Buildings."

•   Let's hope their architects won't have to join the Rubble Club any time soon.

•   A floating McMansion bringing American suburbia to the Venice Biennale - oops - maybe sank! (definitely catch the video!)

•   Weekend diversions: A Vienna zoo presents "Trouble in Paradise" - putting animals side-by-side with symbols of humanity's trashing of the environment (great slide show, too).

•   Architecture Foundation Australia brings Murcutt show to Sydney.

•   "Mix: Nine San Diego Architects" does just what the architects wanted it to do: make us think.

•   Heathcote and Bizley have two (sort of) different takes on "Super Contemporary" at London's Design Museum: "There is much nonsense here, but also glimpses of real intelligence" vs. "Don't the designers feel faintly embarrassed to be showing their work in this way?"

•   In NYC, MoMA x 2: "What Was Good Design?" speaks "even more resonantly to our shopped-out, overequipped times"; and "In Situ" may signal a greater appreciation for landscape architecture - and for sustainability in the new century.

•   "Reef" at Storefront "occupies a grey area between sculpture and structure."

•   Webb is wowed by Neutra show in L.A.: "an inspired selection...handsomely installed and thoughtfully explained."

•   Chicago Architecture Foundation's displays the city in miniature (it's still pretty big).

•   On screen: "A Girl is a Fellow Here" shows that Frank Lloyd Wright, "whose personal relationships with women were famously rather scandalous, was a progressive employer"; and in "Synecdoche, New York, a man builds a second Manhattan in a warehouse; it's "an unflinching and often bleak look at mortality, made palatable - indeed, unforgettable - by once-in-a-lifetime imagery" (it's a Charlie Kaufman flick - would you expect anything different?).

•   Page turners: re-issue of Malcolm Wells' "The Earth-Sheltered House" is a manifesto for underground building that "feels very personal, very intimate"; "Second Holcim Awards - Sustainable Construction" offers inspiring examples.


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