Today’s News - Wednesday, March 3, 2010
• Architecture's successes and failures in Chile and Haiti are worth examining.
• Sanderson responds to Rose's commentary re: architects' role in disaster reconstruction: "often the last people needed" unless they "move beyond their traditional role of designers of buildings."
• Bloomberg/BusinessWeek special report re: the temperature of the global architecture industry in 2010: Russell ruminates on a number of topics, Saul Kaplan calls for cities to "become living innovation labs," and much more (plan to spend some time with this one - it's worth it).
• Luxor's revival of the Avenue of Sphinxes leads to claims of slum-clearing and fears of "Disneyfication."
• Rochon is positively rapturous about Vancouver's "ugly sister" Surrey putting "innovative design at the top of its renewal agenda."
• An eyeful of the winning entries in Surrey's TownShift: Suburb into City ideas competition.
• Cleveland offers a "new model of large-scale worker- and community-benefiting enterprises looking to revitalize the city: the same principles could easily be applied in other cities impacted by the nation's decaying economy.
• A once-thriving Pittsburgh neighborhood reawakens.
• A German commercial real estate investment company will give "green" overhauls to its entire $4 billion portfolio of buildings in the U.S.: "if you haven't taken environmental measures, you will have trouble."
• A call to measure the impact of green design on health in working environments.
• U.K.'s Landscape Institute issues report, "Making it Home: the power of landscape to create good housing," which argues against "an unacceptable emphasis on quantity, not quality."
• King continues his high hopes for repurposing defunct Bay Bridge span that "would signal our region's environmental priorities."
• Betsky weighs in on the new American embassy in London: "it will try to turn what is usually a bunker into a giant piece of cubic zirconium that will have a certain splendor...icily elegant in its isolation" (and a few choice words for the runners-ups).
• Heathcote visits Vitra campus: "a fascinating comment on how culture is blending into commerce," where H&deM's VitraHaus is "a tacit acknowledgement of the increasingly intimate connection between the two" (it's also "a spectacular piece of architecture").
• Stephens visits Berlin's Neues Museum, "where the contrast between the new (austere, sometimes too cold) and the old...at least allows you to know what came before and what did not."
• An impressive shortlist to create a new home for the Design Museum inside London's Commonwealth Institute.
• Lange minces no words about why she thinks Ouroussoff is not a good enough critic: "He is not making a case for keeping the breed" (scathingly blunt - ouch!).
• Scheeren sheds Koolhaas, adding to the list of OMA spin-offs - a "stunning roster of young talent" Rem has trained and nurtured.
• Call for entries: DBIA 2010 National Design-Build Awards Competition.
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Lessons From Chile: Better Building Codes Work, so Why Don't We Have Them? ...seismic construction codes saved lives in the latest quake, but what if the next Big One happens here? ...architecture's successes and failures in Chile, as in Haiti, are worth examining. [images, links]- Fast Company
Architects are often the last people needed in disaster reconstruction: Most of them focus on buildings rather than people, and will be of little use in Haiti or Chile...Beyond the groundbreaking work of Architecture For Humanity and of Article 25...architects need to move beyond their traditional role of designers of buildings... By David Sanderson/Centre for Development and Emergency Practice -- Make It Right- Guardian (UK)
Eye on Architecture: ...special report takes the temperature of the global architecture industry in 2010 by James S. Russell; Needed: Urban Innovation Hot Spots: Cities should become living innovation labs by Saul Kaplan; The renovation of the UN's Secretariat building in New York will restore an icon of a different era. A pity; Calatrava Talks Architecture; etc -- Skidmore Owings & Merrill (SOM); Foster + Partners; Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill; Jean Nouvel; SHoP/Ellerbe Becket; Calatrava; Moshe Safdie; Herzog & de Meuron; Renzo Piano; SANAA; OMA; Gehry; Pei Cobb Freed; Hadid; Stefan Behnisch; Cameron Sinclair/Architecture for Humanity [images]- Bloomberg/BusinessWeek
Families Uprooted as Sphinxes Revive: Hundreds of low-income families have lost their homes since Luxor city officials approved a controversial plan to excavate an ancient processional route and develop it as a key tourist attraction...‘Avenue of Sphinxes’...concern that the master plan will result in the ‘Disneyfication’ of the ancient Egyptian city.- IPS-Inter Press Service
Surrey, Vancouver's ‘ugly sister,' puts on a fresh face: Once known as ‘too poor, too young and too dumb,' Canada's fastest- growing suburb has put innovative design at the top of its renewal agenda. By Lisa Rochon -- Bing Thom; Allen Aubert; Trevor Boddy; Moriyama & Teshima; Kasian; Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg- Globe and Mail (Canada)
TownShift: Suburb into City: An Ideas Competition for Surrey's Town Centres Winning Entries -- Renante Solivar; Robert Denvir; Martin Liew; Peeroj Thakre; Alan James; etc. [link to images]- City of Surrey, BC, Canada
The Cleveland Model: Something important is happening in Cleveland: a new model of large-scale worker- and community-benefiting enterprises is beginning to build serious momentum in one of the cities most dramatically impacted by the nation's decaying economy...the same principles could easily be applied in cities like Detroit...- The Nation
Slumbering Pittsburgh Neighborhood Reawakens: Two big commercial developments help revitalize a once-thriving East Liberty neighborhood in the city’s East End...New design standards have restored the traditional urban street grid to attract shoppers...a converted Nabisco bakery, has landed Google as an anchor tenant.- New York Times
Seeing the Investor Value in Being Green: ...a German commercial real estate investment company has decided it will go “green” with energy-saving overhauls in nearly its entire $4 billion portfolio of buildings..."if you haven’t taken environmental measures, you will have trouble, whether it’s leasing your office building or what have you"- New York Times
Green Buildings Are Healthier: We need to measure the impact of the built environment on health so that the linkages between health care costs and working environments become clearer. -- Gregory Kats/Good Energies; Vivien Loftness/Carnegie Mellon University; Michelle Moore/President’s Council on Environmental Quality; Lisa Schmitz/Bank of America Sustainability Initiatives- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Landscape Institute report emphasises need for quality housing: "Making it Home: the power of landscape to create good housing" argues...there is an unacceptable emphasis on quantity, not quality...makes 10 demands, which include ‘developers incorporate landscape design and planning into initial site planning briefs’... [link to report]- Landscape Institute (UK)
Generate renewable energy on Bay Bridge span: Why splurge on a piece of bridge as found art? ...as a display platform for wind turbines and photovoltaic solar panels, we'd have a visually arresting demonstration that the search for clean energy continues to take new paths...would signal our region's environmental priorities. By John King -- Frederic Schwartz; Marc L'Italien- San Francisco Chronicle
Crystal Bunker: To the rest of the world, America is a fortress...The new American embassy in London...will not change that perception, though it will try to turn what is usually a bunker into a giant piece of cubic zirconium that will have a certain splendor...At least the London establishment will, if the cost cutters can be denied a few pounds of flesh, be icily elegant in its isolation. By Aaron Betsky -- KieranTimberlake; Morphosis; Richard Meier/Michael Paladino; Pei Cobb Freed [imges]- Architect Magazine
Life reflects architecture for Swiss furniture maker: Vitra has achieved something extraordinary...In a fascinating comment on how culture is blending into commerce, the architects have blurred the boundary between soft art and hard sell. VitraHaus is a tacit acknowledgement of the increasingly intimate connection between the two. But it is also a spectacular piece of architecture. By Edwin Heathcote -- Herzog & de Meuron; Hadid; Gehry; Grimshaw; Siza; Ando; Prouvé- Financial Times (UK)
David Chipperfield Architects with Julian Harrap brings Berlin’s Neues Museum to life: ...a stunningly haunting setting...the contrast between the new (austere, sometimes too cold) and the old (intellectual, romantic, richly layered with history) at least allows you to know what came before and what did not. By Suzanne Stephens [slide show]- Architectural Record
David Chipperfield on all-star Design Museum shortlist: ...an impressive seven-strong shortlist to create a new home for the Design Museum inside the Commonwealth Institute in west London -- Haworth Tompkins; Caruso St John Architects; Stanton Williams; John Pawson; Tony Fretton; Claus En Kaan Architecten; RMJM (1962); Deyan Sudjic; Koolhaas/OMA- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Why Nicolai Ouroussoff Is Not Good Enough: Should [he] turn out to be the last architecture critic, that makes it even more imperative to say...He is not making a case for keeping the breed...His approach - little history, less politics, occasional urbanism - shrinks the critic's role to commenting only on the appearance of the architecture. By Alexandra Lange -- Michael Sorkin; Paul Goldberger; etc.- Design Observer
Rem Koolhaas Loses His Star Designer: Ole Scheeren...says zaijian to Koolhaas, leaving the firm to start his own studio...The list of OMA spin-offs is as long as it's acronym-packed: Winy Maas's MVRDV, Farshid Moussavi and Alejandro Zaera's FOA...Dan Wood and Amale Andraos's WorkAC, Bjarke Ingels's BIG, Julien De Smedt's JDS...and Minsuk Cho's Mass Studies. -- Office for Metropolitan Architecture [images, links]- Fast Company
Call for entries: DBIA 2010 National Design-Build Awards Competition; deadline: May 17, 2010- Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA)
-- Competition winner: Steven Holl Architects: Shan-Shui Hangzhou, Hangzhou, China
-- Anmahian Winton Architects: Community Rowing Boathouse, Cambridge, Massachusetts
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