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Today’s News - Wednesday, November 10, 2010

•   Chicago channels Burnham's big plans with GO TO 2040, which includes suggestions for "compact communities where owning a car is not a prerequisite" (and lots of public transportation).

•   Kamin cheers re-think of Chicago's Navy Pier, "but creative spark is missing"; the good news: officials may turn to the city's "mother lode of design talent" for solutions.

•   Thackara offers an in-depth analysis of high-speed transportation systems and concludes, "They are not the way of the future" (definitely worth checking out, all you public transit advocates).

•   Gendall looks into Sherman's take on how "car-obsessed Los Angeles" can work with high-speed public transit: New Urbanism may offer "quick-fix solutions" but it "seems a bit too paint-by-numbers for him."

•   Russell minces no words about what he sees in plans for a "behemoth"15 Penn Plaza: it "would deface New York City's skyline and cast a pall over surrounding streets already shortchanged on light and air...How did this thing get so huge?"

•   San Diego Convention Center picks its expansion design team that "wowed officials" with a 5-acre rooftop park and more (flythrough explains it all).

•   Meanwhile, the San Diego-Coronado Bay Bridge is set to get an eye-popping - and very green - lighting scheme.

•   Gehry's Ohr-O'Keefe Museum in Biloxi dances with the trees "breezily, playfully...there's probably no place in the world where his joyful shapes seem so ideally suited to their purpose" (great video tour with amusing voice-over Q&A) + Dobrzynski's take on the "museum for the area's self-styled mad potter" with "a mad architect in charge. Just kidding."

•   Bernstein looks into Scientology's really grand growth plan: 50 centers, 16 countries, around $500 million, and includes salvaging lots of historic buildings (not everyone is pleased, of course).

•   Cleveland's PlayhouseSquare is a real estate mogul in its own right, reviving the nabe and reaping the financial benefits "that might otherwise have landed in private developers' pockets."

•   And Boston's Modern Theatre comes back to life to play role in the reclamation of "a once-glorious cultural center that became a porn-soaked symbol of city decay."

•   Swank (and they mean swank!) meets history in "glitzy rehabs" of two of Moscow's Stalin-era skyscraper hotels: "We might have overdone it in a few places" (great slide show!).

•   Green and greener: NYC's Battery Park City Parks Conservancy maintenance facility glitters with LEED Platinum (no Quonset hut here!) + Lexington, Kentucky's Bottlestop bus shelter turns lemons into lemonade to shelter and enlighten transit riders.

•   A handy guide to the USGBC's draft of the next version of the LEED, now open for public comment: "what's (mostly) the same; what's different; what's new."

•   Two winners in competition to design water fountains for London's eight Royal Parks (let's see them in lots of parks!).

•   Moggridge receives the 2010 Prince Philip Designers Prize for lifetime achievement.

•   We couldn't resist: "suburban sprawl elevated to aerial art: Eye-catching and provocative" - truly amazing.


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