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Today’s News - Wednesday, November 23, 2011

EDITOR'S NOTE: We'll be celebrating the Thanksgiving Day holiday for the rest of the week, and will return Monday, November 28...Happy Turkey Day!

•   A very interesting Q&A with a planning professor at the University of Cape Town re: the Association of African Planning Schools' efforts to reform planning education (including a course on "informality"): "The problem is at the interface between planning education and practice."

•   Berg offers a fascinating take on how the Occupy movement is reshaping how we think about public spaces: "the clash between the users and the stewards of public spaces has underscored a startling disconnect - public space doesn't always mean what we think it does."

•   Brake parses the debate swirling around the redesign of Minneapolis's Peavey Plaza: "Not everyone is pleased with the process or the plan."

•   Reports from last week's The Second Wave of Modernism II: Landscape Complexity and Transformation conference: "'we need to stop playing the game' that pits different design fields against each other" (for Renfro, it's all about glass - with a little grass thrown in).

•   Q&A with Mazria re: plans for his $100,000 Purpose Prize, being a green building pioneer, and how he's faring in his mission to make all buildings carbon-neutral.

•   More on Chicago selling advertising on its iconic bridges: it is "reviving a debate about how governments raise money in tough economic times": is it, as Kamin said, "a visual crime" or does it "beat going bust" (advertising pro's say ads could "backfire if public disgust sticks").

•   Nemens cheers Trahan's "visionary design" for the Louisiana State Museum Sports Hall of Fame.

•   SCAD's new museum is "an extraordinary project that harnesses history rather than mimics it."

•   Tate St. Ives names 6 finalists in a competition "re-run" to design an extension (the winner of the first round makes the cut - again).

•   London experiments with a calcium-based solution that glues pollution to the roads in trials that show a 14% drop in particulate pollution (not all are convinced).

•   A lively debate about the merits of Architect Barbie showed "opinions divided along generational lines."

•   Weekend diversions:

•   Amelar ambles through "Pacific Standard Time" exhibits and finds "a grand bazaar, as eclectic, wide-ranging, and uneven as the period of art it celebrates" (great slide show, too).

•   Perth is the new perch for "Now and When: Australian Urbanism," designed to "unshackle conventional thinking rather than be prescriptive maps for the future."

•   If you're heading to Art Basel Miami Beach and DesignMiami next week, Clemence turns his camera on some eye-popping "memorable aesthetic experiences" that can be had "just by paying close attention to the city's very public buildings."

•   Heathcote has (mostly) high praise for "The Lure of the City: From Slums to Suburbs" edited by Williams (one of our favorite curmedgeons) and Donald: it is "a provocative and very readable book on a subject more usually written about in the grim language of sociologists, technocrats and non-governmental organizations" (but he also disagrees "with huge chunks").

•   Zacks zones in on Tumbler's "Small, Gritty, and Green" and its "digestible revisionist histories of urban theory" that is mostly "free from professional architecture-and-planning jargon except for its heavy reliance on the unfortunate [New Urbanist] term 'transect.'"

•   Kamin cheers two new books about the past and future of the Chicago River that "spring from different sources."

•   Day deliriously delves into "The Encyclopedia of Australian Architecture": the "impressive tome is testament to...what constitutes Australian architecture as a particular part of global culture."

•   "New Japan Architecture" proves that "serious designers are in the ascendancy" (even if "today's well-placed building may be tomorrow's anomaly").

•   If you happen to be looking for an unusual holiday gift, "Rem Koolhaas: Conversations with Students" has been translated into Persian (there are only 1450 copies of this slim tome by Remment Lucas Koolhaas).


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