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Today’s News - Tuesday, September 6, 2011

•   ArcSpace brings us an eyeful of Henning Larsen and Olafur Eliasson's Harpa in Reykjavik (beautiful pix!).

•   As the 10th anniversary of 9/11 approaches, there's sure to be miles of retrospection, introspection, and observation. To begin:

•   Russell reviews the 9/11 Memorial and finds the "veils of water...shower the names of the dead with grace."

•   An in-depth, thoughtful look at the evolution of the 9/11 Memorial and how its architect, Michael Arad, "evolved from a hot-headed novice to a more temperate veteran."

•   Schumacher offers a visual preview of what's going on at Ground Zero (with some fearless views!).

•   Randy Kennedy's poetic prose and Damon Winter's stunning photos are an ode to the "ironworkers of the sky...who are stacking the top floors of One World Trade Center."

•   Hawthorne and Bentley Mays consider skyscrapers, post 9/11: they may be "vertical hubris" but "remain powerful symbols"; now, if only developers were "willing to invest more energetically in design excellence, North American cities could have tall buildings as exciting and innovative as anything rising into the Asian and Middle Eastern skies" (it's a shame 1WTC is "just the dull-as-dishwater result of the long rebuilding squabble").

•   Two guides to 9/11 tributes going on around NYC this week (some interesting surprises).

•   A number of Spanish cities are pinning their hopes on big arts complexes, but the "notion that a flagship building can yield economic redemption almost overnight doesn't always manifest in success."

•   An architect explains why regional urban strategies are "desperately needed" in developing "ecological urbanisms": Suburban cities and towns "need to be seen as a large part of the solution, not the whipping boy of the density ubanistas."

•   Research studies find "the much-decried homogenization of America is, in part, a product of our residential mobility"; we're willing to relocate, but "once there we crave the familiarity of our favorite fast-food joints."

•   The U.K.'s draft National Planning Policy Framework has heritage watchdogs up in arms in "an escalating war of words" (insults, "rock-throwing," and "semi-hysterical" included).

•   Glancey's review of the week include Dutch architects' plans for a man-made mountain, solar towers in the Californian desert, and anyone on the Windermere steamboat museum shortlist "would make a good winner."

•   Some cheer - and some jeer - new RIBA chief's plans for "a funky institute" (and all that jazz) to bring young architects on board.

•   McGuirk cheers Korea's design biennial, complete with architectural follies that cynics might see as "a pinch of architectural stardust sprinkled on the property market. But they also demonstrate a city's willingness to invest in moments of urban whimsy and character." + While the "architects' hope is that the city will absorb their follies as landmarks...critics have pointed out that folly is not a word that can be translated into Korean": "The Korean Language Society is looking into it."

•   Rawsthorn cheers winners of the INDEX: Design for a Better Life Award, which is itself "a model for good design."

•   Call for entries/RFQ/RFP: Design Team for the Pierscape at Navy Pier, Chicago.


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