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Today’s News - Monday, January 3, 2011

EDITOR'S NOTE: Happy New Year! We're glad to be back after a week away - with a lot of catching up to do (though we were getting used to life without that pesky alarm clock!).

•   ArcSpace brings us an eyeful of Maltzan's New Carver Apartments for the formerly homeless of Los Angeles that "explores how architecture can create new possibilities for its highly vulnerable, dramatically under-served residents."

•   Russell minces no words about America dithering while the rest of the world gets on board with major rail projects: the U.S. "certainly isn't developing the design, construction and management capacity to build on a large scale to global standards."

•   Hawthorne sees bigger problems than just the architecture for proposed L.A. stadium plans: it's developers who are shaping the city "one mega-project at a time. Is this any way to build a city?"

•   Las Vegas architects and planners see the recession as an opportunity to reshape and improve the valley "to make it more functional, visually interesting, environmentally responsible and hospitable to community."

•   Lewis offers up New Year's resolutions for "those who shape D.C.": "Throw away overly generalized plans and undertake fine-grain urban design, street by street and block by block."

•   Kennicott's fine-grain take is that places like the Kennedy Center should study closely Lincoln Center's redesign: it "isn't just about remaking 1960s monumentalism for a new era; it offers a compelling alternative to cities that place fear above dynamism."

•   For a New Yorker, Lincoln Center's re-do has given the "citadel of culture" a "friendlier face," making it a much more neighborly neighbor.

•   Ouroussoff x 2 from the Middle East: he's not so crazy about Mecca's mega-plans for a "gargantuan and gaudy" makeover ("appalling" is another way to put it); while Aleppo, Syria is undergoing "one of the most far-thinking preservation projects in the Middle East, one that places as much importance on people as it does on the buildings they live in" (great slide shows for both).

•   Moore bemoans Make's proposed Swiss bank HQ in London for being "an aloof fortress that ignores its responsibilities to the wider community...Bankers, it says, are people apart from the rest of us."

•   Murphy is ready to do battle over Network Rail's plans to overhaul Edinburgh's two main railway stations, and offers up his own designs for the project.

•   Davidson cheers on Stern's suggestion (that "casually shook out of his cuff-linked sleeve") of what to do with "Breuer's elegant bunker" once the Whitney moves downtown: make it an architecture museum.

•   Preservationists rally (again) to protest demolition of all but six houses in the U.K.'s largest post-war prefab housing estate to make way for modern housing.

•   Reviews of 2010 continue: Iovine cheers "a weird reversal of fortune" when civic projects "never had it so good."

•   It was a "year of contentious architecture...plagued with debate."

•   Litt says that while there wasn't a lot of new architecture in Northeast Ohio last year, there's a lot of exciting things in store because of steps taken in 2010.

•   The best and worst of Ottawa: McDonalds and scaffolding get thumbs-up (go figure), while "cluttered streetscapes resemble web pages."

•   What's in store for architects in the near future, or "will we ever get out of this hole?"

•   Birnbaum hopes for a future where pundits give landscape architecture and public spaces as much critical ink in mainstream press as architecture.


Figment Project - The Living Pavilion

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