Today’s News - Wednesday, February 1, 2012
• Kamin gives us a sneak-peek at 5 shortlisted plans (by stellar teams) for Chicago's Navy Pier that "offer elements that are spectacular - and budget-busting"; eventually, "pier officials will have to separate architectural fantasy from financial reality."
• Rudman calls for the "scaremongers" to lighten up on their "hysteria" about Auckland's growth study plan (see ANN, 01.30.12).
• NZIA Gold Medalist Beaven says plan to change Blenheim's town center "risks losing its charms purely because some urban designers didn't like the aesthetic."
• Towering plans over Sydney's Wynyard Station may not get a green light "because it provides too little public benefit."
• Hume minces no words about what he thinks of Toronto's Trump Tower: "While it's clear no expense has been spared," it's still "a sow's ear and a silk purse wrapped in one."
• Pearman has a fascinating discussion with Adjaye on Africa's problems and promise - no matter what, it's "brimming with unexpected opportunities."
• RIBAJ lines up critics, practitioners, and academics from around the world to pick their favorites (a bit of a "herding-cats exercise" according to Pearman, but well worth it).
• A look at collaborations between architects and botanists who "are finding pragmatic ways to blur the line between manmade construction and nature" (a.k.a. biomimetic architecture and biomimicry).
• Wise offers the rather bizarre tale of the Palais Stoclet in Brussels: "It still glitters as a European Taj Mahal," but "faces an uncertain future."
• Chaban goes to a preview of Gehry's new theater in Manhattan with the architect and Mayor Bloomberg - who'd like to see 10 more buildings by the starchitect in the next two years, but NYC "has actually faired quite well in the Frank Gehry department."
• Hanscom has lively Q&A with Rocky Anderson, "one of the country's greenest mayors" who has high hopes of moving into the White House: "What possessed you to run for president?"
• A New York-based Filipino-American architect has big things going on in Cebu.
• Call for entries: The EBie Awards to recognize environmental performance improvements in existing buildings in the U.S. + 2012 IESNYC Lumen Awards; and IES Illumination Awards (international).
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5 fresh visions for Navy Pier: From pools to amphitheaters, proposals from competing teams offer elements that are spectacular — and budget-busting: ...many of the designers are throwing both caution and cost to the wind...At some point, pier officials will have to separate architectural fantasy from financial reality... By Blair Kamin -- AECOM/BIG/Bjarke Ingels Group; Davis Brody Bond/Aedas/Martha Schwartz Partners; !melk/HOK/UrbanLab; James Corner Field Operations; Xavier Vendrell Studio/Grimshaw Architects [images]- Chicago Tribune
Urban growth scaremongers ignore lessons from the past: All the fuss is over...proposed Auckland spatial plan to design a compact city...Despite the hysteria, the official line of the Property Council is to support a compact city... By Brian Rudman- New Zealand Herald
Don't change town too much: Blenheim risks losing its charms by changing the town centre, award-winning architect Peter Beaven says...changes being considered as part of the CBD Streetscape Design...He questioned the need to change the lights, rubbish bins and seats purely because some urban designers didn't like the aesthetic, at a cost of several million dollars.- Marlborough Express (New Zealand)
Major tower plans considered over Sydney's Wynyard Station: ...$1.3 billion mixed-use City One Wynyard...a 29-storey tower above the station which includes a new shopping centre and office building...has been reported that The City of Sydney opposes the proposal, because it provides too little public benefit... -- Hassell [images]- Architecture & Design (Australia)
One Trump short of a deck: Never have so few spent so much on so little. Toronto’s Trump Tower...an architectural disappointment of sky-high proportions...60-storey building manages the rare feat of being proletarian and precious in equal measure. While it’s clear no expense has been spared, one can help but wonder: For what? ...a sow’s ear and a silk purse wrapped in one. By Christopher Hume -- Zeidler Partnership- Toronto Star
A good man in Africa: Nowhere in our shrinking world has retained its sense of mystery like Africa, and for once it is one of its own sons that is famously exploring its potential. David Adjaye, already an international best-seller, sees it brimming with unexpected opportunities. By Hugh Pearman- RIBA Journal (UK)
World Class: With the world coming to Britain later this year, RIBAJ kicks off 2012 by looking at the best of architecture around the world through a galaxy of recommended stars -- Jurgen Mayer H; BIG/Bjarke Ingles Group; Nonda Katsalidas/Fender Katsalidas; SOM; Diener & Diener; Li Xiaodong Atelier/Hedao Architecture Design; Alejandro Echeverri Restrepo; Violence Protection through Urban Upgrade (VPUU); John Ronan Architects; Geza Architects; Mathew and Ghosh Architects; etc.- RIBA Journal (UK)
The buildings are alive: in biology, designers and architects seek answers: ...architects, scientists and designers are digging ever deeper into the natural world...to seek answers to vexing design questions by mimicking biological systems...“biomimetic” architecture has forged increasingly unlikely alliances...to make structures that work with nature, not against it. -- Foster + Partners; Alexis Karolides/Rocky Mountain Institute/RMI; Mick Pearce; Biomimicry 3.8; Renzo Piano; James Corner Field Operation; Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Piet Oudolf; Neil Spiller- SmartPlanet
An Enchanted House Becomes a Family's Curse: Designed by Josef Hoffman and decorated by...Viennese artists including Gustav Klimt, the Palais Stoclet in Brussels is considered the best surviving realization of a Gesamtkunstwerk, or "total work of art."...It still glitters as a European Taj Mahal...faces an uncertain future as it marks its centennial. By Michael Z. Wise [image]- Wall Street Journal
Term Limits: Mayor Bloomberg Wants 10 New Gehry Buildings in Two Years: New York has actually faired quite well in the Frank Gehry department. The Signature Theater - now known as the Pershing Square Signature Theater...is his third building here. By Matt Chaban [slide show]- New York Observer
Rocky’s road: One of the country’s greenest mayors guns for the White House: When we last spoke with Rocky Anderson, he was kicking some serious butt for the planet from his position as the supergreen mayor of Salt Lake City, Utah...Q. What possessed you to run for president? By Greg Hanscom- Grist Magazine
Filipino-American architect designing 2,000-seat Cebu Church [Shrine of Mary] – something that’s never been seen: ...also into urban planning and gentrification. The company will have a project with the Cebu City government to improve the streetscape of historic Osmeña Avenue. -- CAZA/Carlos Arnaiz Architects [images]- Philippine Daily Inquirer
Call for entries: The EBie Awards will recognize significant and measurable environmental performance improvements in existing buildings; open to commercial or residential projects in the continental United States; deadline: March 31- Urban Green Council / US Green Building Council New York Chapter
Call for entries: 2012 IESNYC Lumen Awards; and IES Illumination Awards (international) to recognize excellence, professionalism, ingenuity and originality in lighting design; deadline: February 13- Illuminating Engineering Society (IES)
Book Review: How to be a Useful Architectural Critic: Alexandra Lange's Perspicacious Primer Points the Way: "Writing about Architecture: Mastering the Language of Buildings and Cities" - use it often and you'll never think of the word "critic" pejoratively again. By Norman Weinstein- ArchNewsNow.com
Winning Design: Michael Maltzan Architecture/Tom Leader Studio: "The Lens," St. Petersburg Pier, Florida
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