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Today’s News - Monday, February 1, 2010

•   ArcSpace brings us Allied Works Architecture in Calgary, and OMA in Hong Kong.

•   How architecture has played a vital role in the redevelopment of (once very violent) Medellín, Colombia, "driven by the concept of 'the most beautiful for the most humble'" (what a concept!).

•   Kamin cheers (with caveats) Obama's high-speed rail plan: "It could be transformative, but stations (and architecture) matter as much as speed."

•   A possible 2020 Budapest Olympics on the horizon (it would do wonders for the city).

•   Architects come up with prefab and modular flat-pack housing for Haiti (now all they need are sponsors).

•   New LEED long-term reporting requirements: will building owners want to play ball.

•   Rawsthorn mediates a debate at Davos re: sustainable design with three designers committed to sustainability, but with very different perspectives.

•   Renovation plans - including a much-discussed vertical green wall - for Portland's 1975 federal building of "concrete, glass and minimal inspiration" are still being refined (and raising some eyebrows).

•   An impressive team works on overcoming the "ugly factor" of building-integrated solar panels because for architects and developers, "looks matter."

•   An interesting discussion re: urban agriculture - "There are no downsides, except, possibly, rats. But if you plan won't get rodents."

•   Essen's Folkwang Art Museum expansion by Chipperfield is Germany's latest architectural landmark (wonder-of-wonders for a starchitect's project, it also finished on time and on budget - wow).

•   Q&A with Chipperfield re: Folkwang: "I don't want people to come here and say 'oh, wow' about the architecture...I want them to walk straight to the works, and then afterwards, say, 'oh, the architecture was nice, too.'"

•   Saffron on a lost opportunity at a much-needed shopping center in North Philly: it "is hardly the worst-designed...It just happens to be the worst-designed one in the best location."

•   London-based muf to curate British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale.

•   Lord Foster pens an essay re: his Yale School of Management and how his time at Yale inspired the design.

•   One way Edmonton, Canada, could stem "a brain drain of creative types" could be "inspiring urban design, spurred by an architecture school ("Our tolerance for crap is now zero," sayeth the mayor).

•   U.K. puts nuclear bunkers on list of protected national monuments (a housing development soon to follow).

•   Webb weaves a lively tale of Contract's Designers of the Year 2010, Graft: "a productive bundle of contradictions" + eyefuls of the Interiors Awards 2010 winners.

•   Is outer space the next architectural frontier? Foster + Partners' Jennings says yes; Edward Cullinan' Nicholson says "we should master building on earth rather than screwing up space."


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