Today’s News - Tuesday, February 18, 2014
EDITOR'S NOTE: We don't toot our own horn too often, but we're feeling rather celebratory - today marks ANN's launch 12 years ago (and almost 3,000 daily newsletters later, we don't feel a day over 27...)!
• A Miesian win for Mecanoo and Martinez + Johnson for the makeover of DC's MLK Memorial Library with a proposal that promises to "keep Mies: Mies. Or even better: improve Mies in a contemporary Miesian way."
• A day of gentrification, gente-fication, gayborhoods, and more:
• Davidson answers critics to his earlier column, "Is Gentrification All Bad?"
• Gentrification has been "baked into the economic forces driving urban development since the 1950s" with "sexy ideas of urban development" - it's time to reexamine "neo-liberalism's central role."
• Latinos are bringing "gente-fication to neighborhoods that others have written off," echoing "a growing desire to live in walkable communities that can support many generations" - and developers are paying heed.
• Florida explains "why gayborhoods matter": according to some studies, there seems to be "a connection between gay neighborhoods and some of the markers of gentrification."
• Detroit is attracting a gentrifying group of city lovers other than young professionals: "empty-nesters are creeping in, and definitely not looking for a quiet retirement community."
• Joining Detroit's battle against blight, a young tech company uses "blexting" to map the city's properties and their status (and starting to do the same for other cities as well).
• India's ring roads, "which should have been the boundaries for growth, lie buried deep inside the bulging and bloating cities," suggesting "that we have played a huge farce in the name of urban planning" that "threatens to put India into a huge traffic gridlock."
• Canada's North, typically known for architecture of "squat, non-descript buildings built more for function than form," is beginning to take design seriously: "a lot of its towns are emerging out of settlement and into a phase of identity."
• Phase Two of Canada's first new school of architecture in 45 years is about to get underway.
• Moore gives (mostly) thumbs-up to O'Donnell + Tuomey's new LSE student center that is "living proof that it is possible to be world famous without conspicuous architecture": though it may feel a bit "overwrought" in places, "at least it is wrought, at a time when most buildings are just assembled."
• Foster Maggie's Centre in his home town of Manchester will be lightweight and glassy to "engage the outdoors."
• Eyefuls of five international examples of vertical gardens and green walls (we're not so sure about the one so totally covered in green stuff "that not an inch of the glass surface will be exposed to direct sunlight" - we feel a bout of seasonal affective disorder (SAD) coming on).
• Eyefuls of the AJ Small Projects 2014 shortlist (Part One): A barn, a bridge, a bunker, a cafe, a castle...
• Beha's Byard Memorial Lecture offers "insight into the tension, and potential, of a contemporary dialogue in historic settings, and what it means to be a welder."
• Betsky has high hopes for architecture books remaining in print, at least as a niche market.
• Call for entries: ULI Toronto Urban Ideas Competition to reconnect Toronto with its waterfront (international).
• O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay! It's snowing - again (we feel a bout of SAD coming on...).
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City Selects Team To Redesign Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library: The selected team promised to "keep Mies: Mies. Or even better: improve Mies in a contemporary Miesian way." Indeed, of the three proposed ideas, the Mecanoo, Martinez + Johnson design stayed closest to the existing feel of the building. -- Mies van der Rohe [images]- DCist (Washington, DC)
Is Gentrification All Bad? Justin Davidson Answers His Critics: “Gentrification can be either a toxin or a balm,” I wrote [in "Is Gentrification All Bad?"]...an imaginary dialogue with a skeptical reader.- New York Magazine
Why Gentrification Is So Hard to Stop: It's baked into the economic forces driving urban development since the 1950s...Consumer-driven solutions to stimulate city economies via shopping, tourism, and luxury condos offer up sexy ideas of urban development...this pattern of neo-liberal problem-solving reinforces gentrification. By not examining neo-liberalism’s central role [and] the so-called suburbanization and "Manhattanization" of cities, Americans will continue endorsing this economic order whether or not we are conscious of it. By James Frank Dy Zarsadiaz- The Atlantic Cities
In Taking Back Urban Areas, Latinos Are Causing A 'Gente-fication' Across The U.S.: It’s not just affordable housing that is pulling Latinos back to neighborhoods that others have written off...the trend echoes a growing desire...to live in walkable communities that can support many generations under one roof. And those preferences are inspiring developers to embrace new designs in heavily Latino neighborhoods to keep degree-holding professionals from fleeing to the suburbs.- Fox News Latino
Why Gayborhoods Matter: We're still limited in our ability to track the U.S. LGBT population, but there does appear to be a connection between gay neighborhoods and some of the markers of gentrification. By Richard Florida- The Atlantic Cities
Urban dwellers: Detroit attracting city lovers with adventurous spirit: They're coming from New York and from the suburbs to live in a great city at a transitional time in its history...While the growing young professional population has been well-documented, empty-nesters are creeping in, and definitely not looking for a quiet retirement community.- Model D (Detroit)
Loveland Technologies' passion: Battle blight: Map tech – aka 'blexting' – charts growth: Their signature website, Why Don't We Own This?, which maps property ownership and tax data...expanded into New Orleans and New York, with Chicago in development. And they've developed a technology that is the backbone of a $1.5 million city effort to fight blight.- Crain's Detroit Business
Going in circles around ring roads: Today the helpless Ring Roads, which should have been the boundaries for growth, lie buried deep inside the bulging and bloating cities...Hindsight suggests that we have played a huge farce in the name of urban planning...Unplanned urbanisation threatens to put India into a huge traffic gridlock. By M.A. Siraj- The Hindu (India)
New public buildings reflect spirit of the North: ...infrastructure projects...are challenging the traditional approach to commercial property architecture and development across northern communities..."a lot of its towns are emerging out of settlement and into a phase of identity..." -- Peter Sampson Architecture Studio; Office of McFarlane Biggar Architects + Designers; Calnitsky Associates Architects [slide show]- Globe and Mail (Canada)
Construction to begin on Laurentian School of Architecture's Phase Two: "...Laurentian Architecture project will see the completion of an important landmark in the city’s downtown core"...The first phase consisted of renovating the two heritage buildings...Laurentian University School of Architecture is the first new school of architecture to open in Canada in 45 years. -- LGA Architectural Partners [image]- Canadian Architect
LSE Saw Swee Hock student centre: ...a quietly impressive 'red brick Eiger' built to real old-school standards of design and construction...living proof that it is possible to be world famous without conspicuous architecture...There are times when [it] feels overwrought, with its many materials, details and facets. But at least it is wrought, at a time when most buildings are just assembled. By Rowan Moore -- O'Donnell + Tuomey Architects [slide show]- Observer (UK)
Norman Foster unveils Maggie's Centre for home town of Manchester: ...lightweight timber and glass pavilion intended to "engage the outdoors" by interacting with the surrounding garden. -- Foster + Partners [images]- Dezeen
Five examples of vertical gardens - including a preview of the world's tallest: As cities become denser and buildings shoot up, the number of gardens is also on the rise – literally...5 international examples of green walls. -- Patrick Blanc; Jean Nouvel; Milroy Perera Associates/Maga Engineering; Ingenhoven Architekten/Architectus; Fytogreen; WOHA Architects; Urbanarbolismo [images]
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)- Architecture & Design (Australia)
AJ Small Projects 2014 shortlist Part One: A barn, a bridge, a bunker, a cafe, a castle, a cinema, a shed, a window, a staircase, a toilet and a couple of home extensions of course. -- Gillespie Yunnie Architects; Gort Scott; Konishi Gaffney Architects; Duggan Morris Architects; Weston Surman & Deane Architecture; Rural Office for Architecture; Adam Khan Architects; DO-Architecture; Ashton Porter Architects; Levitate; Glas Architects; Webb Yates Engineers [links to images, info]- The Architects' Journal (UK)
Welder: The Paul S. Byard Memorial Lecture: Ann Beha presents her firm’s acclaimed work in historic settings...combining a preservation and design practice, offering insight into the tension, and potential, of a contemporary dialogue in historic settings, and what it means to be a welder. [video]- Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP)
There Is Still Hope for Architecture Books: The future of architecture histories, monographs, and biographies is taking shape off the page, meaning the books we know and love will change, too...Are books at all relevant for the way we show, think about, and discuss architecture? However hard it is for me to admit Sylvia Lavin has a point...What remains for book publishing is a niche market... By Aaron Betsky- Architect Magazine
Call for entries: ULI Toronto Urban Ideas Competition to reconnect the City of Toronto with its waterfront (international); registration deadline: February 21 (submissions due March 14)- Urban Land Institute – ULI Toronto
-- OMA/Rem Koolhaas: De Rotterdam, Rotterdam: ...creates a city-within-a-city...Unintentionally it also proves that what works in Manhattan may not automatically work in the Netherland’s second city. By Ulf Meyer
-- Zaha Hadid Architects: Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaijan: ...will play a leading role in re-sculpting the capital's image and in the wider process of carving out the nation's cultural future.
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