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Today’s News - Friday, January 28, 2011

•   We're back from Contract magazine's 32nd Interiors Awards Breakfast, and offer a Q&A with the just-announced Designers of the Year Verda Alexander and Primo Orpilla of Studio O+A.

•   McGuigan finds Gehry's "futuristic" New World Symphony "is irresistible even to classical music novices" - it "isn't fussy... Come take a look, and listen, the building seems to say."

•   Kamin x 2: two federal buildings in Cleveland and Newark are getting "shrink-wrap" rehabs that "reveal the underlying green streak in Obama's federal building boomlet" (two of GSA's 240 renovation projects - "10 times the number of new projects").

•   Litt says the Cleveland plans "will be a skyline-sized loss and gain" and "shows the GSA is doing its best to achieve a harmonious hybrid."

•   Young residents-turned-activists in Beirut hope to save remaining architectural gems from developers who see more profits in building new and shiny rather than restoring the city's heritage.

•   Wigglesworth offers a way to save Robin Hood Gardens from the bulldozers.

•   Webb cheers L.A.'s Steven Ehrlich beats out the starchitects to win commission for UAE Parliament: "At a time when California offices are especially hard-hit, this victory of David over Goliath is a morale booster for every struggling firm."

•   Weekend diversions:

•   "Made Up: Design's Fictions" at Pasadena's Wind Tunnel Gallery "turns design on its head, imagining the unimaginable with "objects and processes that can't actually exist, or won't work, or confuse the whole notion of utility. And yes, that's the point."

•   Hawthorne lays the groundwork for his year-long Reading L.A. series and his reading list of "25 of the most significant books on Southern California architecture and urbanism."

•   Leadon lauds Brash's "Bloomberg's New York" that "smartly ties class politics to place-making...A city built only for the 'elites' means that if they go down, we all go down."

•   While Sudjic's "How Much Does Your Building Weigh, Mr Foster?" may seem like a "hero-worshipping's clear that there is a lot to hero-worship."

•   "The Power of Pro Bono" is proof positive that pro bono projects are no longer "the lesser-loved stepchildren of architectural practices."

•   A phenomenal slide show of photographer Cartagena's images of "the rapid suburbanization and disappearing natural landscapes of Monterrey, Mexico."

•   Call for entries: 8th International Emirates Glass LEAF Awards + Competition Competition 2011: 2nd Annual Prize for Unrewarded Designs.


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