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Today’s News - Friday, November 18, 2011

•   It's a very urban day: Heathcote looks at how cities 'are machines for innovation, incubators of ideas born of necessity."

•   Schuetze x 2: a survey of "some cities that aim to be both smart and well managed, yet have an undeniably hip vibe" + an in-depth look at how Hamburg is reinventing itself by "reshaping how it sees the old and by audaciously building new development" (experimental design encouraged).

•   Lang and Nelson explain the new "Megapolitan America" with a call "to target many long-range planning and public policy efforts to where people live, not where they don't."

•   Findley and Ogbu offer an incredibly thoughtful, intense look at South Africa's attempt to redress the legacy of apartheid: townships "constitute a distinct urban typology that must be addressed by practitioners, policymakers and scholars" while residents "continue to confront the spatial legacy of the past."

•   A Colorado city creates a new chemistry for collaboration in planning that could become a model for other cash-strapped cities (and others are paying heed).

•   Margonelli presents some unconventional strategies regular folks are devising to meet their public transportation needs when "transit planners, focused on schedules and infrastructure investments, don't really get what moves people" (very useful links, too).

•   Hawthorne is only slightly heartened by an improved design for AEG's proposed NFL stadium in L.A., but it still "falls short": it "has somehow gotten lighter on its feet and more bloated at the same time" (and what's with the wings?).

•   Dvir cheers Technion's new graduate housing in Haifa, where bridges connecting the dorms create a "thrilling experience of walking among the treetops."

•   Rybczynski ruminates on last week's "Reconsidering Postmodernism" conference that "was sometimes disjointed and incoherent, since the participants could not agree on what postmodernism actually was - or is."

•   Hagberg has high hopes for the "future of female-driven firms" with Gang's MacArthur win, which changes the stakes for women in architecture.

•   Weekend diversions:

•   "Buffalo's Bethune: America's First Professional Woman Architect" (on view in Buffalo) celebrates the first woman in America to open her own architectural office (curated by one of the prime movers who brought about Architect Barbie).

•   "Gwathmey Siegel: Inspiration and Transformation" takes center stage at Yale.

•   Cary finds a few faults with "Design With the Other 90%: Cities" on view at the U.N., but he cheers it "brings design to the forefront in a place where global decisions are made."

•   Kennicott is haunted by the large-format photographs in "Candida Hofer: Interior Worlds" on view in Baltimore: "Their emptiness is ghostly and thrilling...But they are terrifying, too."

•   Cary is heartened by "Bridging the Gap: Public-Interest Architectural Internships" because it "shines a bright light on an exceedingly rare, but promising breed of architectural internships, focused on the public interest."

•   Adjaye's "African Metropolitan Architecture" is a "7-volume opus" offering "unsentimental snapshots rather than lavish architectural studies" of 52 capitals where he "worries that nationalist zeal coupled with unregulated development are destroying much of its European-influenced patrimony."

•   Hawthorne hails "Eden by Design: The 1930 Olmsted-Bartholomew Plan for the Los Angeles Region" rescued from "from the dustbin of Southern California history" - it's "both inspiring and - because it was never implemented in anything beyond piecemeal fashion - a little depressing."

•   Leon finds "Urbanized" to be "extraordinarily ambitious" and "essential viewing for the urban design community."

•   Two takes on "Eames: The Architect and the Painter": it is a "sprightly documentary" that is "blessed by a wealth of archival material" (it will air on PBS December 19!).


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