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Today’s News - Tuesday, May 24, 2011

•   Let's get the bad news over with first: Last week it was AIA's billing index looking glum; this week it's RIBA's Future Trends survey that shows "positive growth seen since December appeared to be 'running out of steam'."

•   Lewis on why we insist on living in known natural disaster areas, and the motivations that "explain our persistent defiance of Mother Nature. Hope fueled by optimism tops the list."

•   Fracking for gas in Pennsylvania is turning a quiet tourist destination into an industrial town: the "drilling boom is affecting the landscape and the people who call it home" (should we be surprised?).

•   High-rise apartment blocks could be heading for leafy Auckland suburbs, but meeting "the demand for housing and the call to restrain urban sprawl to achieve a compact city would call for a substantial shift in the mindset of the coming generation of citizens."

•   Litt x 2: he sees promise in the Center for Neighborhood Technology study that urges Cleveland to rebuild around its transit lines and port.

•   He sees less promise in change of plans for new casino that would sacrifice a landmark building (for parking, no less), and see another overhead walkway: "Instead of a royal flush, it feels like a royal switcheroo."

•   Pringle takes us on "a whistle-stop tour" of construction trends around the world: "Moscow's in a hell of a hurry, New York is a devil for speed" (and could teach London a thing or two).

•   Kuma wows the crowd re: his V&A Museum at Dundee: "the simple act of making the effort to come to Dundee...was proof the project mattered as much to the architect as it did to the city" (cool video flyover/flythrough of waterfront projects, too).

•   An eyeful of a very cool pavilion for London's Chelsea Flower Show that uses "bio-mimicry engineering to evoke the cell structures of plants."

•   Bey continues his "Harry Weese kick" with a walk-about of his 1969 Time-Life Building that "at first glance...seems less Weese and more Mies. Then a closer look reveals his unique touch...there is an elegance to be found" (great pix).

•   Singapore's Minister of National Development sees "immense opportunities for Singapore architecture" and spells out "three key strategies to develop the industry: nurturing local talent, innovation in architectural design and branding Singapore architecture."

•   "Jugaad Urbanism" show at NYC's Center for Architecture may have closed, but PBS offers a great video tour.

•   Bike sharing comes to Tel Aviv: now "urbanites with the tiniest of apartments can bike around without the storage hassle."

•   Cornell AAP students are "outraged" over dismissal of staffer! Dragon Day in jeopardy! (Comment section a most interesting read!).

•   Who'da thunk: Glancey on the poetry of pylons, "the armored knights of the National Grid" + Could pylons ever be pretty? We might just find out...

•   Call for entries: Pylon Design Competition (international): "Proposals should be both grounded in reality and be beautiful" (what a concept!).

•   Deadline extended: Call for entries: Design for the Real World Redux.

•   We couldn't resist: Rival cities battle for leaning tower title: Italy's world famous tower isn't even close.


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