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Today’s News - Tuesday, March 16, 2010

•   We lose Modernist master Der Scutt, architect of 5th Avenue's Trump Tower and much more.

•   An Australian government report says its cities better begin dealing with rising sea levels and a growing, aging population: "If we don't get this right ... all hell breaks loose, or our cities break down."

•   The ShakeOut Scenario calculates the potential financial damage of an earthquake in Southern California (and real estate investors are paying heed).

•   Parman takes issue with tower plans adjacent to San Francisco's Transamerica Pyramid: he says it's "a case study in what not to do" and that "it's time to get nuanced about density."

•   Lewis says it's time to get serious about public funding for affordable housing: "Density bonuses and the private sector alone can never get the job done."

•   A Connecticut town puts a moratorium on affordable housing while it tries to get its act together: "We're amateurs, so what we needed was some breathing room. This is kind of like calling a truce while we figure out which direction we're going in" (the judge didn't buy it).

•   Historic preservation advocates "have shifted into survival mode" with news that it's losing its federal funding - a measly $30 million/year that the National Trust for Historic Preservation has made go a long, long way + a call to take action.

•   Glancey praises plans to raise the Euston Arch and "get railway architecture back on track": it "might just be one of the finest adventures in urban planning, design, engineering and conservation" that Britain has seen since the arch was demolished nearly 50 years ago.

•   A Deep Throat has leaked six of the eight "heavy hitters" on shortlist for SFMOMA expansion (we were unable to confirm, but it's an impressive list).

•   Chipperfield wins theater re-design in Perm, Russia.

•   Merrick meanders the transformed Jewish Museum in London: the "design supports a mingling of the serious and the playfully humane" (with only one misstep).

•   Heathcote has an amusing lunch with Herzog: neither he nor de Meuron had a burning desire to be an architect: "Architecture just sounded as if it was a lot of things we liked. It was a totally naive decision."

•   Gehry's Signature Theater on West 42nd Street may not be the $700 million showstopper he'd planned for Ground Zero, but at $60 million, it's more affordable, with intimate, casual spaces and craftsmanlike elements: "In a way, it's back to my architectural roots of materials."

•   Krueck muses on the restoration of Mies on Chicago's Lake Shore Drive (great images).

•   Litt offers a peek at plans for Cleveland's Perk Park that are (finally) getting under way: it isn't a question of will it be better, "but how much better."

•   A panel of experts discusses true green vs. greenwashing when it comes to building products.

•   RPI/SOM's CASE wants to turn office windows into multifaceted solar power generators (a great idea, but not all are convinced).

•   A good reason to head to Richmond, Va., at the end of the week: Design Forum IX: An Architecture of Necessity with Adjaye, Eizenberg, Freear, and Cruz.

•   The Guggenheim auction: "like eBay, for wealthy architecture nerds" - though some bargains may be had (Thursday is the last day to bid).


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