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Today’s News - Tuesday, June 7, 2011

•   Iovine on Ouroussoff "moving on" leaves us wondering if the NYT will replace him: "at least he was there writing about architecture for the general public, one of the last of a rare and rarer breed" (we wish him all good things).

•   Gwathmey Siegel adds a third name with a new majority share holder (we're just glad they're keeping Charlie's name).

•   Public spaces get public airings everywhere: High Line Part Deux opens today to cheers for being an "economic dynamo" for the city - its $115 million investment spawned $2 billion in private investment dubbed "Architects Row."

•   On the other side of Manhattan Island, South Street Seaport goes back to the drawing board ("after 40 years of missteps"): "Any effective design must carefully balance retail space with public space for the community."

•   Maya Lin redesigns Newport, RI's Queen Anne Square "to make the space more inviting to visitors after years of decline" and honor Doris Duke.

•   But some think the "funereal, 'meditative' design is antithetical to the joyful, energetic spirit of this area" - and why turn to "a big outsider's name" instead of Rhode Island's local talent?

•   Gruber has a gripe about Santa Monica Landmarks Commission wanting control over the design process of City Hall's front yard that "is inhospitable and boring" and "cries out for a re-design" (already in the works by Corner's team who assumed it had "a rather free hand").

•   Waggonner & Ball tapped for New Orleans water management project that intends to "follow the lead of the Dutch" to "become a more resilient ecological city."

•   Dvir digs deep into Oxman's attempts to "apply naturally occurring physical processes to the design of objects and buildings" (naïveté is a key ingredient).

•   Kamin on the iffy future of Gang's Ford Calumet Environmental Center: "If you're at optimist, it's on hiatus. If you're a pessimist, it's just been given the kiss of death."

•   Glancey finds "a seat near the deer" in the pop-up Garsington Opera house in the English countryside that "is one of the most thrilling venues in Britain" - "an astonishing creation" and "one of the most thrilling places in the country to hear live music."

•   Kucharek finds the opera company's "demountable home" the "product of a weird and wonderful collaboration."

•   Hawthorne gives a qualified thumbs-up to Ojai Music Festival's new pavilion: "Is challenging music somehow less threatening than challenging architecture?"

•   While the Museo Soumaya may be "a gorgeous object," it "rises pretentiously, with troubled construction techniques and flawed exhibition design" (great pix, though).

•   McGuigan makes the case for why we should all head to a remote farm in Nova Scotia next week for MacKay-Lyons' Ghost Lab 13, intended "to counter the numbing effects of globalization and a design culture that seems to favor theory over craft and spectacle over place" (with an impressive line-up, we're game!).

•   Ending on a glum - but not surprising - note: AIA survey finds 63% of architects report stalled projects caused primarily by lack of financing.


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