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Today’s News - Wednesday, April 7, 2010

•   St. Louis's The City + The Arch + The River competition down to five finalists - impressive teams (and great presentations).

•   Heathcote continues his thoughtful contemplation on the future of cities and metacities: can Copenhagen teach anything to Kolkata?

•   A fascinating profile of the Brookings Institution's Bruce Katz, the "oracle of urban policy" who has "taken urban issues out of the special interest zone and into the mainstream."

•   Q&A with Speck re: "The Smart Growth Manual": good designers "will find the prescriptions of the Manual liberating, not constricting. The goal is to create more places where good design can actually matter."

•   Q&A with Regional Plan Association's Wright and Lane: "the role of the planner and the designer is still significant - it has just changed somewhat."

•   Anderson asks: "Can we dare to hope for the renaissance of urban influence in American politics? Think of it as the chance of a lifetime to live under the stars, not under a dome."

•   Q&A with landscape architect Cochran re: why "urban planning needs to be more adaptable and less prescriptive physically, encouraging adaptation over time."

•   Hatherley explores the impact of architecture on Manchester's cultural scene and wonders how property development became the new punk rock.

•   Developers see a bright future in recycling/repurposing older, inexpensive buildings with classy makeovers (by classy architects, of course).

•   A developer makes an "artsy bet" on a scruffy Miami neighborhood with all the right elements to make it the next hip nabe.

•   Glancey x 2: Ban's Pompidou-Metz "is a very strange fish" and an "ambivalent building," but maybe that's the point (ahhh - that roof!).

•   He is "thrilled" by WAM's "madcap fairytale of a new hotel" in the Netherlands: it's "a stupefying, funny, delightful building" (we agree!).

•   The true inconveniences of designing Al Gore's NYC office: so much effort went into "making the place seem unimpeachably green that, weirdly, it's actually less green than it could be" (maybe, but it looks great!).

•   Wilkinson talks about why mobile offices work, why they fail, and how his project in Sydney has turned bank design "on its head."

•   Pogrebin ponders the "perfect storm" facing Save Ellis Island which may not be able to save itself: it needs $500,000 in the next few weeks if it is to survive (our fingers are crossed).

•   A good reason to head to San Francisco next week: 2010 International Low Impact Development Conference: "Redefining Water in the City."

•   Call for entries: 4th Annual AARP/NAHB Livable Communities Awards; and (how could we resist) the Cocktail Napkin Sketch Contest.


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