Today’s News - Thursday, June 16, 2011
• Your must-read of the day: How an evolutionary biologist, "using the lens of evolution to understand life in a struggling city," ends up as a community organizer, "supporting and partially funding a slew of improvement schemes" (doggy parks included)
• London's Broadgate saga continues re: the "demolition of this overbearing bully of a building": White watches for two things: "How much fuss will the heritage lobby make? And how good will the new building be?" + While preservationists charge the powers-that-be of bowing to economic pressure, Shuttleworth cheers the decision not to list Broadgate as "great news for architecture, great news for London and good news for us" (what else would he say?).
• Brussat takes on Gehry's Eisenhower memorial that is "more about the architect than the general" ("To be kind, it is dull and clunky"): he cheers the winners in a counter-competition who offer lots of arches, columns, obelisks, colonnades (what else?).
• A terrific look at IBM on its 100th anniversary: "How Big Blue helped redefine corporate architecture" with a building boom that "cemented its role as design patron" (great slide show!).
• Baltimore County finds muddy puddles along the road to PUDs (planned unit development): does it allow developers leeway to bypass rules, or make "room for projects that suit a community even if zoning doesn't permit them"?
• Europe's biggest travel company is turning a Tuscan village "into what they hope will be a modern, multicultural vacation paradise for millionaires" (oh joy).
• TEN Arquitectos has a hot plan for Tabasco, Mexico (bikes and pedestrians welcome).
• Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands takes on the challenge to "turn a 'tortuous and incoherent layout' of seven original buildings" into a spectacular international HQ for Bonhams auction house in London.
• Pearson wends his way through Belzberg's Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust: "its refusal to preach and its dramatic procession of increasingly intense spaces engage visitors in an architectural and philosophical dialogue not easily forgotten or ignored" (great slide show).
• An intriguing trio vie to design a "world-class border art form on a grand scale" that "will signify Scotland's border with England" (alas, no pix).
• A look at Beirut's first green-roofed tower (and Foster + Partners' first project in Lebanon).
• A good day to be in London: the inaugural Open City London Documentary Film Festival launches + a good day to be in Prague: the Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space takes off.
• Winners all: an impressive list of 69 win Graham Foundation 2011 Grants to Individuals with projects that "expand and strengthen the scope of contemporary architectural discourse" (great presentations) + Topos Landscape Award 2011 to Antje Stokman for her "multi-disciplinary approaches" that prove "capable landscape architects - and above all female landscape architects - can play a leading role in this effort" + $300 House Open Design Challenge winners (an interesting mix).
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Evolution: Darwin's city: David Sloan Wilson is using the lens of evolution to understand life in the struggling city of Binghamton, New York. Next, he wants to improve it..."I really wanted to see a map of altruism"...he realized that his models and experiments offered clues about how to intervene, how to structure real-world groups to favour prosociality...has acquired the language of community organizing and joined, supported and partially funded a slew of improvement schemes...- Nature
Is Jeremy Hunt right about the Broadgate centre? While there are more important things to worry about than the demolition of this overbearing bully of a building, there is some merit to the view that the best architecture of all periods should be preserved...Two things to watch out for, then. How much fuss will the heritage lobby make?...And how good will the new building be...? By Michael White -- Peter Fogo (1985); Ken Shuttleworth/Make- Guardian (UK)
Campaigners accuse DCMS of bowing to economic pressure over Broadgate: But Ken Shuttleworth hails decision not to list Broadgate as "fantastic news"...it was "great news for architecture, great news for London and good news for us." -- Twentieth Century Society; Peter Foggo/Arup; Make- BD/Building Design (UK)
A proper memorial for Eisenhower: ...it was unsurprising that the system...chose a design more about the architect than the general. Frank Gehry's design is sedate for a Gehry...But it also lacks any hint that this is to be a memorial...An alternative was sought through a counter-competition...winning counterproposals speak far more eloquently than Gehry about the general's life and values. By David Brussat -- Daniel Cook; Sylvester Bartos/Whitley Esteban; Michael Franck/Rodney Mims Cook [images, links]- Providence Journal (Rhode Island)
IBM at 100: How Big Blue helped redefine corporate architecture: Led by Thomas Watson Jr....building boom cemented IBM's role as design patron...commissioned many of the period's greatest architects, graphic designers and artists...also took pains to hire local talent as it expanded overseas. -- Eliot Noyes; Eero Saarinen; Charles and Ray Eames; Paul Rand; Mies van der Rohe; Edward Durell Stone; Marcel Breuer/Thomas Gatje; Norman Foster/Foster+Partners; Ricardo Legorreta; Isamu Noguchi; Barton Myers; Mitchell/Giurgola; Peter Walker [slide show]- Network World
Alternative development technique brings controversy in Baltimore County: Developers avoid zoning restrictions, but some question fairness...[of] the "planned unit development," or PUD...Supporters say the flexible approach makes room for projects that suit a community even if zoning doesn't permit them. Critics say the approach gives developers leeway to bypass rules.- Baltimore Sun
It Takes a Village: TUI Builds Tuscan Playground for the Wealthy: Europe's biggest travel company is investing a quarter of a billion euros in a Tuscan village and a large piece of surrounding countryside, turning it into what they hope will be a modern, multicultural vacation paradise for millionaires. But where are the Italians? [images]- Der Spiegel (Germany)
Enrique Norten/TEN Arquitectos’ Hot Plan For Tabasco, Mexico: ...accommodating bikes is only a small part of what is intended to overhaul the city’s spine including an eye catching pedestrian bridge anchoring the project. [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands to create Bonhams' HQ: Brief involves turning seven buildings into one: The brief is to turn a “tortuous and incoherent layout” of seven original buildings into a new international headquarters with the most advanced sale rooms in the world. [images]- BD/Building Design (UK)
Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust: The architectural procession...confronts you with what Hannah Arendt called “the banality of evil,” a phrase that chills us still because it conflates the quotidian with the horrific...its refusal to preach and its dramatic procession of increasingly intense spaces engage visitors in an architectural and philosophical dialogue not easily forgotten or ignored. By Clifford A. Pearson -- Hagy Belzberg [slide show]- Architectural Record
Gretna Landmark potential designs unveiled: A trio of potential designs for “The Great Unknown”...provided £2 million can be raised, it will be in place for the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games...The contemporary landmark, now known as Border Crossing, will be a world-class border artform on a grand scale...will signify Scotland’s border with England... -- Charles Jencks; Andy Goldsworthy; Cecil Balmond/Balmond Studio; Ned Kahn; Chris Wilkinson/Wilkinson Eyre Architects- Dumfries and Galloway Standard (Scotland)
Beirut Is Getting Its First Green-Roofed Tower: The 3Beirut tower in Lebanon will be the first Foster + Partners development in that country. [images]- Green Prophet (Middle East)
Inaugural Open City London Documentary Film Festival: 140 films, 20 cyclists powering the open air cinema, 10 acclaimed jurors, 6 screens, 5 prizes, outside bar and café, live music, barbeque, farmers
market; June 16-19- Open City London
Unique theater art event returns: Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space will again invade the center of Prague as well as the city's outskirts June 16-26...each PQ also offers something extra - this year, "Intersection: Intimacy and Spectacle"...30 box-like stages have been built by Israeli architect Oren Sagiv...- The Prague Post
Graham Foundation announces the 2011 Grants to Individuals. Over $500,000 was awarded to 69 grantees..."projects both expand and strengthen the scope of contemporary architectural discourse by engaging a broad range of socio-political, technological, environmental, and aesthetic issues." [links to info, images]- Graham Foundation (Chicago)
Topos Landscape Award 2011 for landscape architect and professor Antje Stokman: ...for her commitment to multi-thematic work and her achievements in various planning groups...award emphasises that complex eco-systemic tasks today need to be resolved with multi-disciplinary approaches and that capable landscape architects – and above all female landscape architects – can play a leading role in this effort.- Topos – The International Review of Landscape Architecture and Urban Design
$300 House Open Design Challenge Winners: What began as a challenge in a blog post on the Harvard Business Review website has resulted in a collection of 300 design submissions from around the world. [links to images, info]- $300 House
You Survived: Introduction: Your Firm Survived the Recession - Now Foster a Thriving a Practice. By Michael S. Bernard, AIA, and Nancy Kleppel, Assoc. AIA- ArchNewsNow
Zaha Hadid Architects: Riverside Museum of Transport, Glasgow, Scotland, UK
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