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Today’s News - Tuesday, January 31, 2012

•   Jacobs finds herself on the outskirts of Austin in the world of a mixed-use "lifestyle center" that, like others, is a "genuine urban place...a conscious remix of the 20th-century mall and the postwar subdivision, for a generation that wants absolutely nothing to do with either."

•   In Houston, a "cathedral of light and sound" and a place of "sublime beauty" is discovered underground - which could be the city's next great public space (this is very cool - with pix to prove it).

•   Badger looks into environmental graphic design and the "complex art of urban wayfinding" that "fits a unique niche somewhere in between building and landscape architecture, between the small scale (street signs) and really large systems (whole cities)."

•   Kamin cheers "a promising new plan" for Grant Park's Daley Bicentennial Plaza now that the Chicago Children's Museum has given up trying to build its ill-conceived underground "bunker" and stay at Navy Pier.

•   Pedersen sits down with Darden, executive director of Brad Pitt's Make it Right Foundation, re: "the background of this seminal project, its unforeseen challenges, and its potential for global impact."

•   Higgins has a most informative (and oft amusing) conversation with Rogers, Stirk, and Harbour re: £140m penthouses, Prince Charles's strange ideas about architecture, and more.

•   KPMB tapped to create new HQ for the Glove and Mail in Toronto (no pix yet).

•   AIA ABI shows non-residential construction seems to be bouncing in the right direction: "Pretty solid readings in November and December suggest some modest improvement" may be afoot.

•   Three we couldn't resist - and so worth checking out: an eyeful of NASA's "groovy" 1970s concepts for space-based neighborhoods (could these have inspired Gingrich?) + FLW's Heller House, an "astonishing 6,100 sq. ft. of outrageous opulence," can now be yours for a mere $2.5 million (lots of fabulous photos) + an amazing slide show of "the Russian Banksy" creating some really eye-catching works around Moscow (locations are intriguing).


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