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Today’s News - Thursday, February 6, 2014

•   Now you can make up your own mind about the MoMA/AFAM debate - the video of last week's forum in its entirety is on online (and definitely worth watching!).

•   Pedersen was skeptical of Hawthorne's suggestion that DS+R should have resigned the MoMA commission, but now: "I'm beginning to think he was right. There will always be another job. But you have only one reputation."

•   Pogrebin gets a lot of landscape architects to weigh in on the possibility that MoMA might open the Sculpture Garden to the public - for free; the majority thinks it's a lousy idea: "How is this different than just a shopping mall with sculptures?"

•   Giovannini, meanwhile, cheers The Living as the MoMA P.S.1 pick for this year's Young Architects Program with its "Hy-Fi" tower of "very eco-smart bricks" that "will no doubt rise like a nerdy enigma wrapped in a conundrum wrapped in a computer program" (in a good way).

•   Calys cheers the Presidio Trust's decision to nix the Lucas proposal for Crissy Field that "didn't deserve to see the light of day," but bemoans that "the passionate and sincere efforts" by the two other teams "went for naught."

•   Hargreaves and Jones offer their own take on the Presidio's problem: "The essential question should not be which of the three building proposals should be added," but "should we add a building at all?"

•   Jacobs finds joy in SWA's "skill and imagination" in transforming Houston's "trash-lined eyesore" underneath ribbons of elevated expressways into the Buffalo Bayou Promenade; NYC's Under the Elevated shares a kindred spirit.

•   Hume is more than heartened by a report that proves "it would be better and cheaper to get rid of the Gardiner Expressway than to keep it - a large swath of Toronto could be brought in from the dark and civilized."

•   Two takes on taking down the skyways around Minneapolis's Nicollet Mall: Tear them down: "James Corner Field Operations has an impossible task - to save us from ourselves."

•   Without the skyways, it "would be cruel and unusual punishment" for those who work downtown "during those deep-freeze months."

•   The London mayor's "intervention in favor of skate park torpedoes" the Festival Wing redevelopment - and "took the Southbank Centre by surprise," leaving it scrambling to find "alternative funding."

•   Capps has an enlightening (and often amusing) breakfast with Gehl, who "delivered one of the best architecture burns I've ever heard" ("bird-sh*t architecture" included).

•   Hill gets Gehl's take on London's streets: he's "disappointed with the capital's progress with implementation his ideas for humanizing city streets...Can a fast-growing London be persuaded to love its people more?"

•   San Francisco hopes to "reinvent the housing project": Hope SF is rebuilding old housing projects and offering social services to the mostly low-income residents.

•   A great profile of Elemental's Aravena: "rather than talking about his prestigious commissions, he wants to talk about social housing" and the "discipline of scarcity" that "leads to a clarity of vision and quality of design."

•   After "two decades of bringing fun and creativity to building design," FAT's final act will be "a retrospective of the influence of modernism on housing for the elite Venice Biennale" (Griffiths minces no words re: affordable housing and quality - 'er, the lack thereof).

•   The UN taps Bloomberg as an envoy for cities and climate change "to raise political will and mobilize action among cities."

•   Call for entries: 2014 Design & Health International Academy Awards.

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