Today’s News - Tuesday, December 3, 2013
• The Rockefeller Foundation names the first 33 cities selected through the 100 Resilient Cities Centennial Challenge (the first step towards making Chief Resilience Officer a part of every city hall, we hope!).
• Cohen makes his pick of the 8 smartest cities in Latin America: most "have major problems" and "a bad track record in proper land use and urban planning," but all "are making strides towards becoming more efficient, cleaner, more innovative, and yes, smarter."
• Moore minces no words about the small handful of NIMBYs forcing the "the closure of one of London's most important and brightest community art spaces," creating a "cultural desert": "They are gutless, lacking the decency and courage required to raise the concerns directly" (a searing pox-upon-their-houses complete with scorpions and bunions included).
• The much-beleaguered Louisiana ArtWorks, one of New Orleans" "biggest white elephants," goes up for auction today: the "lavish arts- and crafts-making laboratory...was doomed by grandiosity" that "fizzled without ever being finished" (pix show an amazing space - will it be adapted or gutted, we wonder).
• Preservationists are up in arms about an "unchecked" renovation plan for Erickson's 1979 Bank of Canada building in Ottawa: the "magnificent public garden in the central courtyard would be one of the casualties of the redesign."
• Better news for the Preston bus station: a funding deal "expected to be rubber-stamped" this week would "100% guarantee" its future.
• A look at what the future of Detroit could/will look like: "some changes are a long way off, but others are already under way - enough that we can take a peek at 18 examples" (great projects; sadly, no architects named).
• Marshall tests his theory that "a city's skyline is a physical portrait of the distribution of wealth" and that cities that "lead the world in skyscraper construction" also have "the greatest distance between their rich and poor."
• Hume x 2: even though Toronto's towers are "taller and more ubiquitous that ever," it's not necessarily a bad thing: "Perhaps one of the issues that must be acknowledged and dealt with is architecture's failure to conceive towers that soar in our hearts and minds as they do on our skyline" + His list of "Canada's architectural beauty queens" that "stand out for very different reasons" (a few towers included).
• Hawthorne hails the "soaring elegance" of Maki's 4 World Trade Center: it is "a deft, thoughtful and well-made piece of architecture" - in a place like Lower Manhattan, "where getting even a bike rack approved can be a deeply fraught exercise - makes its crisply tailored appeal all the more surprising."
• Brussat bemoans Washington, DC's height limits have not necessarily protected its beauty from being "pock-marked by modern architecture - low, flat, dull. The damage to beauty was done half a century ago" - though parts "will continue to rise above the city's expanding flab and turpitude, at least for now."
• A project in L.A. "has become a symbol of whether developers can withstand the complications of working in earthquake-prone city": "It's really great that we are doing this without having to kill people first" (how reassuring...).
• H&deM's Binswanger on the Pérez Art Museum Miami: "though she would never take the credit for a building, those projects on which she is named as senior architect are noticeably light on their feet."
• Norquist is stepping down as CNU president; search committee is accepting applications + An in-depth Q&A with Norquist digs deep into the weeds of his tenures at CNU and as mayor of Milwaukee.
• BD surveys architects to find out which other architects they most admire: "The results may surprise you."
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33 Resilient Cities Announced by Rockefeller Foundation: ...the first group of cities selected through the 100 Resilient Cities Centennial Challenge...to hire and empower a Chief Resilience Officer...develop a resilience plan... By Judith Rodin [links]- Rockefeller Foundation
The 8 Smartest Cities In Latin America: Which cities in the region are leading the way toward becoming urban centers of innovation and using technology and civic policy to create better lives for their citizens? ...most of these cities have major problems...a bad track record in proper land use and urban planning...all...are making strides towards becoming more efficient, cleaner, more innovative, and yes, smarter. By Boyd Cohen- Fast Company
The Wapping Project: our obsession with house prices will turn our cities into cultural deserts: Complaining Nimbys have led to the closure of one of London's most important and brightest community art spaces...They are gutless, lacking the decency and courage required to raise the concerns directly...If they want perfect silence at 10pm, why live in a city? By Rowan Moore- Observer (UK)
Beleaguered Louisiana ArtWorks heads to the auction block on Dec. 3: ...one of the biggest white elephants New Orleans has ever seen...custom-designed as a lavish arts- and crafts-making laboratory...The real trouble was intrinsic; it was doomed by grandiosity...fizzled without ever being finished..."The trick is going to be, who can look at the building and find a new use for it?" [images]- The Times-Picayune (New Orleans)
Bank of Canada renewal plan stirs controversy: ...about to embark on an unchecked $610-million renovation...sparking urgent calls for the protection of what is considered one of the best buildings ever designed and built in 20th-century Canada...magnificent public garden in the central courtyard would be one of the casualties of the redesign... -- Arthur Erickson/Marani, Rounthwaite & Dick (1979); Fred Vermeulen/Perkins+Will; Phyllis Lambert/Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA); Cornelia Oberlander [images]- Ottawa Citizen (Canada)
Preston bus station poised for funding deal: Agreement would ‘100% guarantee’ bus station’s future...“The listing decision made it clear that the bus station is here to stay"...The deal is expected to be rubber-stamped on December 5. -- BDP (1969)- BD/Building Design (UK)
This Is What Detroit Could Look Like In 2033 ... And Beyond: ...change is brewing in the Motor City...Some of those changes are a long way off, but others are already under way - enough that we can take a peek at 18 examples of the Detroit of the future... [images]- Huffington Post
Do Skyscrapers Promote Inequality? It's not an accident that China and New York City, which have perhaps the greatest distance between their rich and poor, also lead the world in skyscraper construction...a city’s skyline is a physical portrait of the distribution of wealth and thus political power in a society...But these are just theories. Can they be supported by evidence? Jason Barr, an economist at Rutgers...has been collecting and analyzing data on the subject... By Alex Marshall- Governing Magazine
Toronto transformed into a city of towers: Things are looking up right here in Vertical City: ...they are taller and more ubiquitous that ever. This doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Perhaps one of the issues that must be acknowledged and dealt with is architecture’s failure to conceive towers that soar in our hearts and minds as they do on our skyline. By Christopher Hume [images]- Toronto Star
The most beautiful in the land: Canada’s architectural beauty queens stand out for very different reasons. By Christopher Hume -- Teeple Architects; Daoust Lestage; David Roberts Jr. (1890s); Peter Clewes/architectsAlliance; MAD Architects; Jones and Kirkland Architects; Bortolotto Architects; Norman Foster/Foster + Partners; BBB Architects; Saucier + Perrotte/Hughes Condon Marler Architects; MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects [slide show]- Toronto Star
4 World Trade Center as ground zero's reputation-builder: The soaring elegance of Fumihiko Maki's design at ground zero may help rehabilitate the strong-arm tactics of developer Larry Silverstein: ...72-story, $2-billion tower...is a deft, thoughtful and well-made piece of architecture, so quiet that it almost seems to recede from view...in a part of Lower Manhattan where getting even a bike rack approved can be a deeply fraught exercise — makes its crisply tailored appeal all the more surprising. By Christopher Hawthorne [images]- Los Angeles Times
Small future for tall buildings in D.C.: Height limits have not protected the beauty of Washington's famous classicism. It is pock-marked by modern architecture...low, flat, dull...A moderate rise in the height limit won't matter much...The damage to beauty was done half a century ago...will continue to get uglier at the street level. Yet the Washington Monument and the Capitol...will continue to rise above the city's expanding flab and turpitude, at least for now. By David Brussat [images]- Providence Journal (Rhode Island)
The Troubles of Building Where Faults Collide: A stalled project to build two skyscrapers [Millennium Hollywood] has become a symbol of whether developers can withstand the complications of working in earthquake-prone Los Angeles...“It’s really great that we are doing this without having to kill people first.”- New York Times
Christine Binswanger on Pérez Art Museum Miami: ...though she would never take the credit for a building...those projects on which she is named as senior architect are noticeably light on their feet...If the building avoids “white cube” clichés, that is in part thanks to Terence Riley, she says...Binswanger is one of only two female partners... -- Herzog & de Meuron- Financial Times (UK)
CNU President John Norquist to Step Down After a Decade: spearheaded campaigns for highway removal, better housing policy and walkable communities; search committee is accepting applications from interested and qualified individuals; deadline: January 10, 2014 [link to application]- Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU)
John Norquist: Ten years out of office, he wants you to know he doesn't worry (too much) about his legacy. But he doesn't want to talk about you-know-what. Here, the full, unedited conversation with the former mayor...any regrets? "I wish I would have fought harder for light rail than I did."- Milwaukee Magazine
The architects most admired by other architects: The results may surprise you. -- Foster + Partners; Herzog & de Meuron; BIG/Bjarke Ingels Group; Gensler; AHMM; SOM/Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; AECOM; KPF/Kohn Pedersen Fox; OMAp; Renzo Piano; Sanaa; Snohetta- BD/Building Design (UK)
-- Atelier Peter Zumthor: Shelters for Roman Archaeological Site, Chur, Switzerland (1986): It's astonishing to think it was designed and built almost 30 years ago.
-- Choreography of Thought: Dominique Perrault’s Sketches: "The silence, the mystery that surrounds a sketch constitutes a space in which thought is free."
-- Foreign Office Architects (FOA): Yokohama International Port Terminal (2002), Yokohama, Japan -- Farshid Moussavi; Alejandro Zaera-Polo
-- "The Monocle Guide to Better Living" helmed by founder Tyler Brûlé...It is big....global to the bone and filled with stuff of superb quality.
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