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Today’s News - Wednesday, December 2, 2009

•   Lessons from Amsterdam to Abu Dhabi to improve our communities through innovative transportation planning + 9 great streets around the world and what they can teach us about how roads can become prime public spaces.

•   Washington "seems to have learned a lesson from New York" with the Urban Revitalization and Livable Communities Act that will fund parks to rebuild cities.

•   A Q&A with the four NYC commissioners who are making NYC a more livable city - and their unusual and "enlightened fellowship."

•   Helsinki wins title of World Design Capital 2012.

•   Hawthorne's take on the Swiss ban of minarets: now the focus of the "tense relationship" and debate between Islam and the West has shifted to architecture: "for supporters of the ban the towers carry heavy architectural and cultural weight."

•   Huxtable cheers 41 Cooper Square: "This is high architectural drama...It is not building as bling. It is how architecture turns program and purpose into art."

•   Bernstein cheers Miami's newest piece of art: H&deM's parking garage, though "for all its architectural bravado, the real artistry in the building may be the deal-making that made it happen."

•   Arch Record's Design Vanguard 2009: 10 "rising stars, provocateurs, and trailblazers" (and lots of pix to prove it).

•   Barker explains his "new mission is to rehabilitate the reputation of suburbia" and why it "needs a kiss of life, not a sneering curled lip" from the architects who are able to shape it.

•   Commercial innovations in sustainability are finding their way into homes and condos.

•   Rosenbaum offers a neat round-up (and lots of links) to all that's swirling around the demise of a Mies in Chicago and Zumthor's L.A. adventure.

•   A few pieces of luscious eye candy we couldn't resist: Ron Arad's Design Museum Holon in Israel; MIT's plan for "big bubbles in the sky" over London's 2012 Olympics (with Google behind it, it just might happen); and the amazing materials named Material ConneXion's inaugural MEDIUM award winners.

•   Call for papers for MillionTreesNYC's research symposium on the socio-ecology of urban landscapes, green infrastructure and public health.

•   One we really couldn't resist: for a token £1-a-piece, new life for U.K.'s iconic red phone boxes.


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