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Today’s News - Friday, September 6, 2013

•   Taylor offers a number of reasons to head to the Monterey Design Conference (aside from getting to hang out in the Julia Morgan-designed Asilomar Conference Grounds and stroll the Pacific beach).

•   Viñoly speaks out about who's to blame for the Walkie Talkie "death ray": too many consultants: "Architects aren't architects anymore. It's the fault of the architectural discipline [in the U.K.] which has cast itself into a completely secondary thing" (catty comments abound).

•   Saffron reports on the rejection of a second 9/11 memorial proposal for Philly: "the Philadelphia Art Commission hated its design - a cartoonish, half-scale Liberty Bell strung between nine-foot replicas of the Twin Towers" (the "designer" and mayor are none too pleased).

•   Similar to New Orleans and Chicago, "repatriates and newcomers" are revitalizing Detroit because they "find charm where others lament what used to be there" (a Korean parable included).

•   Architects rally around Rudolph's Orange County Government Center: "How lucky you are to have this masterpiece," says Giovannini.

•   Holt has a fascinating Q&A with philosopher Benjamin re: the conflict between preservation and sustainability: "Sustainability should no longer be limited to concerns that are strictly environmental. There needs to be an understanding of 'cultural sustainability.'"

•   Jacobs has a "revelatory" journey on New Jersey's Passaic River, discovering that Newark is (finally) "reconnecting with its long-abused waterfront" - the city "could stop being a 'non-place' and start becoming a destination."

•   Bernstein finds much the same happening on NYC's Queens waterfront that "has shed its identity crisis" with the opening of Hunter's Point South Waterfront Park.

•   King cheers the opening of San Francisco's new Bay Bridge eastern span that only took about 20 years; called "elegant" and "dynamic" by some, is it "a 'cubic zirconia' rather than a jewel - it's time for the Bay Area to make its judgment."

•   Call for entries: RFQ for a new Vancouver Art Gallery + 61st Annual P/A Awards + 2014 NAHBGreen Awards: Greening the American Dream.

•   Weekend diversions:

•   Horton hails "A New Sculpturalism" as "the most ecstatic tribal dance around the bonfire of contemporary Los Angeles architecture to have been staged in recent memory" (whatever it's actually called).

•   Lubell, meanwhile, says the "mutated show reveals some incredibly beautiful work" while the L.A. architecture community's "biggest fear is being labeled," but it's time to get over it or "they will be labeled the worst thing of all: nothing."

•   Two good reasons to be in San Francisco (three counting the new bridge): the 10th annual Architecture and the City festival includes "Unbuilt San Francisco" shows in five venues, where "a plot to seed Treasure Island with water-bladdered 'jellyfish houses' is one of the least bizarre proposals" (great pix!).

•   Also in SF: Jarmain's stunning photos in "American Beauty: The Opulent Pre-Depression Architecture of Detroit" could "stand as a goodbye to a glory forever passed or an inspiration for what the city could be again" (amazing pix!).

•   Baird gives lots of thumbs-ups to Filler's "Makers of Modern Architecture (Volume II)": he "can now lay claim to the mantle of the late Ada Louise Huxtable."

•   A must-read excerpt from May Joseph's "Fluid New York" that "puts our ecologically vulnerable city's relationship to water into historic context - and how other places are dealing with the same problems."

•   Goodyear has a good word for Campo's "The Accidental Playground": a "deeply thoughtful, intensely observed, and challenging book...posing questions that are applicable to cities everywhere."

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