Today’s News - Tuesday, April 17, 2012
• ArcSpace brings us an eyeful of Safdie's new museum in Punjab, India.
• Kimmelman visits Piano's new convent and visitors' center hugging the hill beneath Corbu's Notre Dame du Haut and likes what he sees: they "aim to blend in, not compete," which "would have been a fool's game and an affront...Humility is a virtue. That's the obvious lesson."
• Meanwhile, Piano's Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas is threatened to be fried, blinded, and over-shadowed by the new, mirrored Museum Tower.
• Farrelly bemoans the loss of public spaces that "used to be, genuinely, a culture's living rooms" - now being "destroyed by modernism's storm troopers."
• McKee reflects on the likelihood that Friedberg's 1973 Peavey Plaza in Minneapolis (which "suffers from a chronic lack of love") will be replaced; it's "harsh news, but it is unsurprising."
• Davidson, on a brighter note, reflects on a new Times Square: the "beauty" of Snøhetta's "quiet, even minimal design lies in dark, heavy sobriety and a desire to be a lasting pedestal to the frenzied dazzle above."
• Chin and Herzan cheer the Taxi of Tomorrow, "but New York needs more design thinking": the project "demonstrates the power of design in our city to drive change."
• Lackmeyer lightens up at the prospect of downtown Oklahoma City plans to open up transit options: "A small revolution is about to take place" with an experiment that "might just change the rules for decades to follow."
• Big plans to transform an abandoned amusement park in East Berlin into a public art space (dinosaurs included, we hope! Check out the pix).
• Q&A with Balmori re: "the false dichotomy between architecture and landscape" and how it began.
• In Australia, the new state government architect "isn't afraid to call it as he sees it": Sydney "desperately needs more construction," and if that means building Barangaroo, so be it; "not everyone is so sure."
• Design Council Cabe is not convinced by the public space proposed for Ikea's Strand East housing development, though it did praise "the massing of the predominantly low-rise scheme."
• Wayne State University has big plans for a biotech hub in Detroit - good news for WSU and the city.
• On a much smaller scale, the Heidelberg Project is giving an impoverished Detroit neighborhood "a sense of ownership and pride...offering postindustrial 'shrinking cities' a model for the future" (stuffed toys and polka dots included - great pix!).
• Brew ponders current energy codes that could make new buildings not code-compliant in the near future; he does have high hopes for the Passive House approach to energy efficiency.
• Quirk's query: "Is Zaha's latest prize really an advancement for women," and will AJ's soon-to-be announced Woman Architect of the Year and Emerging Woman Architect of the Year "really revolutionizing the profession for women?"
• A petition drive is launched to save a Neutra icon in Pakistan from demolition, though "chances for preservation seem slim and its destruction imminent."
• We couldn't resist: Carlson on a Cooper Union student who launched "his own protest, in a way that only a clever designer could" (and some took the bait - 'er - got punked).
• Call for entries/applications: 72 Hour Urban Action Stuttgart 2012 Real-Time Architecture Competition.
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Moshe Safdie & Associates: Khalsa Heritage Memorial Complex, Anadpur Sahib, Punjab, India
Quietly Adding to a Modernist Masterpiece: Renzo Piano’s new convent and visitors’ center at Notre Dame du Haut, Le Corbusier’s famed chapel...aim to blend in, not compete...would have been a fool’s game and an affront...Humility is a virtue. That’s the obvious lesson... By Michael Kimmelman -- Atelier Corajoud- New York Times
Dallas's Mirrored Museum Tower Threatens to Flood the Nasher Sculpture Center With Texas-Sized Sun Ray: ...set to be among the tallest and most impressive skyscrapers in the city...It will also be among the shiniest — a quality that is raising the hackles of its neighbor...will either blind visitors to the nearby sculpture park or, alternatively, envelop the institution in its imposing shadow due to its sheer hugeness. -- Renzo Piano; Scott Johnson/Johnson Fain- Artinfo
A view with a room: In private homes and public spaces, people need discrete places where they can think, imagine or just 'hang'...almost all rooms you enter...are without exception depressing...Why do we tolerate it? ...But more emphatically destroyed by modernism's stormtroopers...are the rooms of our public selves: the rooms of the city...we are still suffering Le Corbusier's toxic influence...Public spaces used to be, genuinely, a culture's living rooms... By Elizabeth Farrelly- Sydney Morning Herald
Preservation, Plus and Minus: M. Paul Friedberg's Peavey Plaza suffers from a chronic lack of love, not least from the city, which wants to replace it...has a cast of partisans who are fighting to save the original design...It’s a decent argument...It looks as if a permit to demolish the plaza will be approved imminently. This is harsh news, but it is unsurprising... By Bradford McKee -- Tom Oslund/oslund.and.assoc.; Charles Birnbaum/The Cultural Landscape Foundation- LAND Online / American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Countdown to a New Times Square: Could it become a place where New Yorkers actually want to hang out? ...a quiet, even minimal design that doesn’t try vainly to compete with the glowing canyons. Its beauty lies in dark, heavy sobriety and a desire to be a lasting pedestal to the frenzied dazzle above. By Justin Davidson -- Craig Dykers/Snøhetta; Janette Sadik-Khan [image]- New York Magazine
Cabbing Fever: The Taxi of Tomorrow Is Great, But New York Needs More Design Thinking: The daunting halo of complexity (“it will never happen”) of the project demonstrates the power of design in our city to drive change. By Susan Chin/Design Trust for Public Space and Paul Herzan/Cooper-Hewitt- New York Observer
OKC Central: Transit alternatives begin to emerge downtown in Oklahoma City: Plans for electric car charging stations, a streetcar system and bicycle accommodations begin to open up transit options...A small revolution is about to take place, however, in the heart of the city and this downtown experiment might just change the rules for decades to follow. By Steve Lackmeyer- The Oklahoman
Kulturpark: An Abandoned Amusement Park Becomes a Public Art Space: Hidden in a lush forest along the Spree River in East Berlin...filled with wild grass, sun-faded dinosaur models, roller coasters frozen in time, a pirate ship, a Ferris Wheel, and a train that still runs after years of disuse...curatorial team hopes to use the ruins to shed light on Berlin’s cultural history and imagine the city’s future. [slide show, links]- GOOD Magazine
Interview with Diana Balmori: In "Groundwork," your new book with architect Joel Sanders, you argue that designers must “pursue a new approach that overcomes the false dichotomy between architecture and landscape.” How did this false dichotomy begin? [images]- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
Architect harbours grand vision for rejuvenation of city: ...new state government architect, Peter Poulet, is an advocate for change and isn't afraid to call it as he sees it...The proposed [Barangaroo] redevelopment of Darling Harbour...he thinks will provide a ''symbolic gesture'' that signals...Sydney is competing with other capitals...Not everyone is so sure. -- Richard Rogers; Philip Cox (1988); Christoph Ingenhoven; Sam Marshall; Richard Johnson- Sydney Morning Herald
Arc-ML's Ikea housing scheme fails to convince Design Council Cabe: expressed concerns about the amount of public space proposed as part of Ikea’s 1,200 home Strand East development on the fringes of the Olympic Park in east London...praised the massing of the predominantly low-rise scheme...- BD/Building Design (UK)
WSU to build $93M biotech hub: Dalgleish Cadillac site to house hundreds of researchers: ...will be the focal point of the largest construction project in the history of Wayne State University...biomed center is a major achievement for the Woodward corridor. -- Albert Kahn (1927); Harley Ellis Devereaux- Crain's Detroit Business
Can Stuffed Animals and Polka Dots Save a Detroit Neighborhood? ...there are reasons for optimism...The Heidelberg Project...gave the impoverished community a sense of ownership and pride...offering postindustrial “shrinking cities” a model for the future. -- Tyree Guyton [images]- The Atlantic Cities
Nice House, But Is It Legal? If you designed or built a home that met energy code just a few years ago, that same home will probably not be legal to build just a few years from now...Superefficient Housing Initiative set out to prove that housing can be...60% more efficient than the 2006 IECC, for about the same cost as just meeting the code...The Passivhaus (Passive House) approach is what I consider the world’s most aggressive energy efficiency standard. By James Brew, AIA- Rocky Mountain Institute
Is Zaha’s Latest Prize Really an Advancement for Women? Drew represents an architect who sees architecture as an instrument of good; Hadid represents the epitome of an architect who practices architecture as High Art...The Jane Drew Prize Winner has been selected, but the AJ will also announce the Woman Architect of the Year and Emerging Woman Architect of the Year...Are they really revolutionizing the profession for women? By Vanessa Quirk- ArchDaily
Save Richard Neutra’s Pakistani Icon from Destruction: ...designed his embassy in the then-Pakistani capital of Karachi as “stripped for action”...chances for preservation seem slim and its destruction imminent. A charge to reverse the buildings’ fortunes is underway, led by the architect’s son Dion Neutra and the Neutra Institute for Survival Through Design. [images]- Architizer
In Satire, Cooper Union Leases Its Starchitecture to Cover Its Deficit: Amid a debate...whether to start charging tuition for the first time in some 110 years — a student has put up his own protest, in a way that only a clever designer could...Cooper would lease...41 Cooper Square — the signature building designed by the starchitect Thom Mayne — to the Polytechnic Institute of New York University for $20 million in annual revenue...Except that there was no such deal... By Scott Carlson- The Chronicle of Higher Education
Call for entries: 72 Hour Urban Action Stuttgart 2012 Real-Time Architecture Competition, July 11-14: 10 Teams | 10 Sites | 10 Missions | 3 Days and Nights to Design and Build around Stuttgart 21, the largest urban redevelopment in Europe; apply to take part in the action; cash prize; application deadline: May 26- 72 Hour Urban Action International
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