Today’s News - Tuesday, May 1, 2012
• Calys gives two thumbs-up to "Social Media in Action" - an invaluable handbook for A/E professionals "who realize that social media is not a passing phenomenon and can play a part in their business."
• Doig x deux (and not a little dispiriting): do we really want to live in a "sentient city" where "top-down urbanism" (and high-tech sponsors) treats "the residents as a problem to be solved rather than as part of the solution"?
• He ponders the consequences of technology "helping cities control everything from traffic to disease. But who should control the technology? The smart-city movement is at a crossroads."
• Lepeska, on the other hand, is intrigued by the rise of the "temporary city" and the pop-up phenomenon popping up everywhere.
• Down Under, Barns calls for Tasmania to end the "hollow" rhetoric about the state "nurturing the creative industries" and begin including architecture and design, "two of the most economically and socially valuable contributors...not luxuries but necessities in a society that wants to prosper."
• Q&A with Koolhaas re: how the economic and cultural changes of the 21st century are transforming world cities as well as the practice of architecture.
• A recent forum looked at establishing "vibrancy and dynamism indicators" as "ways to quantify those unique, often qualitative 'know it when you see it,' characteristics that shape successful neighborhoods."
• White serves up Round 2 of a "Vegas-style prize fight between Glitter Gulch and Cowtown" (a.k.a. Las Vegas vs. Calgary).
• Quirk moves a bit further afield with a fascinating two-parter re: bursting the myths about Suburbia: if the suburbs are "ripe to be re-imagined, are we up to the challenge?"
• EDITOR'S NOTE: the comment sections in most of the articles above are just about as compelling (informative, challenging, scary, sad...) as the articles themselves.
• ASLA's new animation illustrates how to accommodate a growing numbers of urban farmers to transform unproductive spaces into low-cost sources of nutrition.
• Carlson and Goodyear both cheer Nordahl's "Making Transit Fun!": Can transit incorporate playground equipment? "You bet." + It's "a reminder that transit has only lost when it aims low. We should always be looking for joy, even on the bus."
• Walker travels L.A.'s new Expo Line to Santa Monica: "The stations are elegant yet unassuming" - too bad the train car design "put us at the back of the pack."
• The downside to the Expo Line: there's rising anxiety about what will become of Santa Monica's 18-year-old Bergamot Station Arts Center when the trains start to arrive.
• Hadid's next stop: Nuremberg, with a new exhibition center for the NürnbergMesse (green cred included).
• Rosenbaum updates us on the "Goshen commotion" that continues to swirl around the fate of Rudolph's Orange County Government Center.
• "Family Of Schools" exhibition at The Lighthouse in Glasgow "highlights some of the core design qualities we aspire to in all Scottish schools captured in drawings by Alan Dunlop."
• Another reason to hop the Expo Line to Santa Monica next week: 9th Annual AltBuild / 2012 Alternative Building Materials & Design Expo (if you don't feel like taking the train, there's free bike valet parking!).
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Book Review: "Social Media in Action: Comprehensive Guide for Architecture, Engineering, Planning, and Environmental Consulting Firms" by Amanda Walter & Holly Berkley: This practical handbook is invaluable for practitioners who realize that social media is not a passing phenomenon and can play a part in their business. By George Calys- ArchNewsNow
Science fiction no more: The perfect city is under construction: Do we really want to live in them? PlanIT Valley, currently being built from scratch in northern Portugal...will be a sentient city...a classic example of top-down urbanism, treating the residents as a problem to be solved rather than as part of the solution...The city with 100 million sensors will cost $19 billion. Citizens engaged voluntarily? Free of charge. By Will Doig -- Steve Lewis/Living PlanIT; Mark Shepard; Carlo Ratti/MIT SENSEable City Lab; Greg Lindsay [links]- Salon
Your next mayor: A computer: Technology is helping cities control everything from traffic to disease. But who should control the technology? The Paris wristband project shows how...urbanites conceive of solutions to their cities’ problems through creative uses of technology. It’s urban resourcefulness at its finest. But it may not last. The smart-city movement is at a crossroads. By Will Doig- Salon
The Rise of the Temporary City: While artists, activists and event organizers have embraced the pop-up phenomenon, urban visionaries have remained overwhelmingly concerned with permanence. That may be changing, according to "The Temporary City" by urban planner Peter Bishop and environmental scientist Lesley Williams... By David Lepeska [images, links]- The Atlantic Cities
Grand designs inspire: There is a good deal of rhetoric...about this state nurturing the creative industries. But when it comes to architecture and design, two of the most economically and socially valuable contributors to Tasmania...the rhetoric is ringing a little hollow. Unless we recognise that [they] are not luxuries but necessities in a society that wants to prosper then that rhetoric will remain. By Greg Barns -- Design Institute of Australia; FJMT; TMAG; Lyons Architects; Liminal Studio; Terroir- The Mercury (Tasmania, Australia)
Q&A: Rem Koolhaas on the Invention and Reinvention of the City: ...discusses how the economic and cultural changes...are transforming world cities as well as the practice of architecture..."The energy that inspires reinvention either comes from pressure — when negative forces lead to a breakthrough...or cities get their energy from striving." -- Office for Metropolitan Architecture/OMA- Next American City
Arts Forum Recap: Measuring Vibrancy in Placemaking: "Measuring Vibrancy: The Impacts of Arts and Culture Investments in Placemaking": ...proposed vibrancy and dynamism indicators—ways to quantify those unique, often qualitative “know it when you see it,” characteristics that shape successful neighborhoods. [video link]- Municipal Art Society of New York
Time to take a Strip off Vegas planners: Round 2 of a Vegas-style prize fight between Glitter Gulch and Cowtown...lessons learned from Las Vegas are: -- Things such ass casinos...are not catalysts for other developments around them. Mega complexes - be they casinos, offices, hotels, convention centers, retail or performing arts complexes - are never pedestrian-friendly.... By Richard White- Calgary Herald (Canada)
Saving Suburbia Part I & 2: Bursting the Bubble: If architects are to “save” the suburbs, and redesign them based on their multiple realities, they’ll have to start by separating themselves from the myth...we must enlist them in re-thinking suburbia for its forgotten citizens, its poor and “disencarchised"... + Getting the Soccer Moms On Your Side. By Vanessa Quirk [images, links]- ArchDaily
The Edible City: ...a new animation from ASLA’s “Designing Our Future: Sustainable Landscapes” online exhibition that shows how to turn a conventional community into an edible city....changing regulations to accommodate the growing numbers of urban farmers...many types of private and public spaces...can now be legally transformed from unproductive spaces into low-cost sources of nutrition.- The Dirt/American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA)
We dare you to have fun on the train: We ride the bus or train because it’s the right thing to do, not because we enjoy it. It doesn’t have to be that way, argues urban planner Darrin Nordahl [in] "Making Transit Fun!"...Can transit incorporate art? Yes! How about playground equipment? You bet. By Scott Carlson- Grist Magazine
How to Make Transit (and Biking and Walking) Sexy: Urban designer and writer Darrin Nordahl thinks it's time for advocates of alternative transportation to stop trying to appeal to reason and go for the gut instead..."Making Transit Fun!"...a reminder that transit has only lost when it aims low. We should always be looking for joy, even on the bus. By Sarah Goodyear [links]- The Atlantic Cities
LA's Transit Dreams Coming True? On the tracks of Los Angeles' new Expo Line: ...on its way to becoming a world-class transit city again...The stations are elegant yet unassuming...train cars also put us at the back of the pack. By Alissa Walker -- Parsons; Gruen Associates; Miyamoto International [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
Galleries’ survival threatened by railway expansion plans: Uncertainty surrounds future of Santa Monica arts centre: Bergamot Station Arts Center...An 18-year-old art space is being threatened with destruction and gallery owners worry they could be pushed out by rising rents when the new new Exposition Light Rail (Expo) stop opens in 2015.- The Art Newspaper (UK)
Zaha Hadid picked for German exhibition centre: ...revealed plans for a 8,000 m² exhibition centre for the Nuremberg trade fair and conference district (NürnbergMesse) [images]- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Goshen Commotion: Vote Expected Thursday on Endangered Paul Rudolph Orange County Government Center: The cause of the preservationists got a boost from...the Times Herald-Record, which published an editorial urging the legislators to take the pro-Rudolph arguments more seriously. By Lee Rosenbaum -- designLAB architects [links]- ArtsJournal
"Family Of Schools" exhibition at The Lighthouse, Glasgow, highlights some of the core design qualities we aspire to in all Scottish schools captured in drawings by Alan Dunlop.- Architecture and Design Scotland (A+DS)
9th Annual AltBuild / 2012 Alternative Building Materials & Design Expo, May 11-12, Santa Monica, CA: over 40 industry speakers - with special focus on water efficiency, saving through green building (developing, brokering and getting rebates), energy savings, and then looking to the future (free bike valet parking!)- City of Santa Monica (California)
-- Exhibition: "Massimo Scolari: The Representation of Architecture, 1967-2012"; Architecture Gallery, Yale School of Architecture, New Haven, Connecticut
-- Zellnerplus: Matthew Marks Gallery, Los Angeles, California
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