Today’s News - Wednesday, December 21, 2011
• Pondering public spaces in the age of Occupy Wall Street: AIANY lines up an all-star panel to try to answer the question: "what makes up truly public space?" (you can watch the whole thing).
• Balsley, the landscape architect "behind more POPS than anyone," has some ideas: "Whatever the repercussions of OWS, no one should be led to believe that uninviting design is an appropriate response" for Privately Owned Public Spaces.
• Arieff offers a most interesting riff on rethinking "temporary" architecture (comment section worth a gander, too).
• Campbell-Dollaghan parses the Koolhaas Q&A with Der Spiegel: "If you only read the highlights, you probably missed the point."
• Rem might not have been kind in his comments about HafenCity, and despite financial setbacks (including the probable scrapping of an OMA project), the $10 billion, starchitect-studded adventure in urban redevelopment "is moving along" (great slide show).
• Rybczynski wanders Bing Thom's Surrey Central City outside of Vancouver that combines a shopping mall, office tower, and university, planned like a traditional downtown: "The longer I walked around...the more convinced I became of the profound correctness of this innovative solution."
• Bayley at his best sizes up the 25-year-old Lloyd's Building being landmarked: "Proof that 'modern' has become an historical style label...From bold astonishment to the safety of the archives in a quarter of a century! This is an irony to savor."
• Meanwhile, Grimshaw's plans for London Bridge Station redevelopment gets the green light (though not all are pleased with what the wrecking ball will claim).
• Eisenhower's granddaughters are not so happy with Gehry's memorial design: "They're not against Gehry. They're not against modern design. They just don't like this one."
• Benfield cheers a county initiative to make suburban streets more user- (i.e. people-) friendly that "brings together three relatively new and successful lines of sustainability thinking and planning" (including green infrastructure and "complete streets").
• Suzuki hails Canada's grand plan to establish its first urban national park; it's "an exciting NIMBY project" in the Greater Toronto Area that "will be unlike any other."
• Bey makes his pick of the some of the best (Jahn's "magical, mechanical" library) and worst (the "awful fiberglass Marilyn Monroe in granny panties") of the year in Chicago architecture.
• Great presentations of Architect Mag's 2011 Annual Design Review winners.
• Three we couldn't resist: Part 1 of three "architectural fairy tales" + LaBarre's take on London's new Routemaster by "Brit-boy wonder" Heatherwick (fab photos by Iwan Baan, too!) + An astounding slide show of street artist Relero's 3D illusions on pavements (not to be missed!).
• Call for entries: RFP to save Johansen's iconic 1970 Stage Center in downtown Oklahoma City now in danger of being lost + OPPTA Competition: Emergency Interventions.
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AIANY Ponders Public Spaces in the Age of Occupy Wall Street: The OWS protests have raised a major question for architects, legal eagles, and other concerned folks: what makes up truly public space...Freedom of Assembly: Public Space Today panel tried to address just this question. -- Michael Kimmelman; Alexander Cooper/Cooper, Robertson & Partners; Michael Sorkin; Lance Jay Brown; Rick Bell; Elizabeth J. Kennedy/Elizabeth Kennedy Landscape Architect; etc. [link to video of discussion]- Curbed New York
What to Do With Zuccotti Park? The Designer Behind More POPS Than Anyone Has Some Ideas: Whatever the repercussions of Occupy Wall Street, no one should be led to believe that uninviting design is an appropriate response...neither the quantity nor the quality of Privately Owned Public Spaces should be spared going forward. By Thomas Balsley- New York Observer
It’s Time to Rethink ‘Temporary’: Architecture has always been synonymous with permanence, but should it be? The architecture that’s been making news is fast and fleeting: pop-up shops, food carts...there is undeniable opportunity in the temporary: it is an apt response to a civilization in flux...“temporary” is so retro that it’s become radical. By Allison Arieff -- Robert Kronenburg; Mike Lydon/The Street Plans Collaborative; Build a Better Block; Proxy; Envelope Architecture and Design; Mimi Zeiger [images, links]- New York Times
Koolhaas's Defense of Generic Architecture: If you only read the highlights of his...interview in Der Spiegel, you probably missed the point...he believes the generic city is also the freest...Generic plug-in waterfronts...are the product of a simple equation between developers and city governments...architecture is "icing on the cake," a broken, out-dated profession, validated at random...according to the whims of an ever-evolving bureaucracy. By Kelsey Campbell-Dollaghan- The Atlantic Cities
A Stunning Revival for Hamburg’s Old Port: A 388-acre industrial zone is being transformed into HafenCity, a vibrant mixed-use district...Despite some financial setbacks, the $10 billion urban redevelopment project is moving along. -- Herzog & de Meuron; Behnisch Architects; Richard Meier & Partners; Kees Christiaanse/KCAP/ASTOC; Henning Larsen; Spengler & Wiescholek; Rem Koolhaas/Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) [slide show]- Architectural Record
The University in the Shopping Mall: A Vancouver suburb’s experiment: Surrey Central City [is] hardly a run-of-the-mill mall...The key to the design of the project was placing the 5,000-student, four-story university facilities on top...planned like a traditional downtown...why should students be isolated from everyday life? Or vice versa? The longer I walked around...the more convinced I became of the profound correctness of this innovative solution. By Witold Rybczynski -- Bing Thom Architects [slide show essay]- Slate
Is modern architecture now old hat? The Lloyd’s Building...designed by Richard Rogers, has achieved heritage status with its Grade I listing...Proof that “modern” has, indeed, become an historical style label is with us now...There are several layers of meaning here...has become an unignorable, although perhaps not yet much-loved, London landmark...From bold astonishment to the safety of the archives in a quarter of a century! This is an irony to savour... By Stephen Bayley- Telegraph (UK)
London Bridge Station redevelopment gets green light: Plans...including demolition of the South Eastern Railway offices in Tooley Street and permanent closure of Stainer Street and part of Weston Street - have been approved by Southwark's planning committee...fits into the £6 billion Thameslink Programme... -- Grimshaw [images]- London SE1
Eisenhower’s granddaughters critical of Frank Gehry’s memorial design: Modernism vs. traditionalism. In Washington, this spells controversy. The project has become a battle of wills...Susan Eisenhower and her family...would prefer a simpler, more traditional design...They’re not against Gehry. They’re not against modern design. They just don’t like this one. [slide show]- Washington Post
Fixing suburbs with green streets that accommodate everyone: There’s a lot to like about Montgomery County’s initiative, including that it brings together three relatively new and successful...lines of sustainability thinking and planning: redesigning suburbs; green infrastructure; and “complete streets”...It reminds us that the greatest potential for sustainable communities lies with the integration of ideas and purposes. By Kaid Benfield -- SvR Design Company; Galina Tachieva/Sprawl Repair Manual; Ellen Dunham-Jones/June Williamson/Retrofitting Suburbia [images, links]- Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)
National Parks Go Urban: ...an exciting NIMBY project. It will put nature in millions of backyards by establishing Canada's first urban National Park in the country's largest urban area. Nestled in the east end of the Greater Toronto Area, Rouge National Park will be unlike any other. By David Suzuki- Huffington Post Canada
The best (and worst) in Chicago architecture 2011: ...the good begins with the UNO Soccer Academy...The magical, mechanical Mansueto Library...some of the worst...The demolition of the old Michael Reese Hospital...That awful fiberglass Marilyn Monroe in granny panties... By Lee Bey -- Juan Moreno; Ghafari Associates; Helmut Jahn [images, links]- WBEZ Chicago Public Radio
2011 Annual Design Review: With 20 projects across six categories, the winners reflect exceptional design in a variety of building typologies. -- Steven Holl Architects/Solange Fabião; Höweler + Yoon Architecture; Preston Scott Cohen; Marlon Blackwell Architect; Johnsen Schmaling Architects; Lord Aeck & Sargent/Office dA; de Leon & Primmer Architecture Workshop; etc. [images, info]- Architect Magazine
The House on Chicken Feet, Part 1: "Baba Yaga": ...three "architectural fairy tales," reimagined by New York firms...all of the tales explore, in words and images, the "promise of a magical home." By Kate Bernheimer & Andrew Bernheimer/Bernheimer Architecture; Leven Betts; Guy Nordenson and Associates- Places Journal
London's Futuristic New Double-Decker Bus Hits The Streets: The prototype, a fuel-efficient hybrid by the studio of Brit-boy wonder Thomas Heatherwick, is cleverly designed to speed up passenger boarding and represents the first time that the city has commissioned a new bus in more than 50 years. By Suzanne LaBarre -- Heatherwick Studio [images]- Fast Company
Street artist Eduardo Relero's 3D illusions on pavements [slide show]- Telegraph (UK)
Call for entries: Request for Proposals/RFP for iconic Stage Center in downtown Oklahoma City designed by John M. Johansen in 1970; won a National AIA Honor Award in 1972 but is now in danger of being lost; deadline: February 29, 2012- AIA Central Oklahoma Chapter (AIA COC)
Call for entries (international): OPPTA Competition: Emergency Interventions: 5 sites are areas of risk or emergency situations where intervention will be through immediate action; earlybird (discount) registration deadline: February 20; submission deadline: April 16, 2012- Pan-American Observatory of Landscape, Territory and Architecture
Best Architecture Books of 2011: 10 books sparking creative inspiration plus escapist fare for financially fickle times. By Norman Weinstein- ArchNewsNow
Competition winner: BIG/Bjarke Ingels Group: Koutalaki Ski Village, Levi, Finland
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