Today’s News - Wednesday, February 19, 2014
• ANN Feature: Q&A with Valerio and Mattheis re: Valerio Dewalt Train's University of Chicago Laboratory Schools: "We wanted to dive deeply into the culture of the school, so one of the first things we did was to participate in its daily life."
• Kennicott's take on the winning MLK Memorial Library makeover team: the "decision is a bold one," but the "choice of a Dutch firm suggests there may be complicated and painful process ahead" (Rybczynski tweets: "DC library opts for flash and picks Dutch firm Mecanoo. Silly name, silly design. Poor old Mies.").
• Conti, meanwhile, brings us a little-known Mies in Pittsburgh that "shows virtue of simplicity" with "all the rigorous discipline and detail of any of his more famous works."
• Davies reports on a recent report that shows Melbourne has grown faster and "performed better on a number of key metrics" than Sydney - why?
• Ticher has an answer: perhaps Sydney should ditch its famous harbor and landmarks and concentrate on the rest of the city - "cities without such obvious attractions make greater efforts to get the best out of what they do have. Try asking someone from Melbourne."
• King looks at four new office towers still not much more than holes in the ground that hope to appeal to both traditional corporations and "companies whose workers aren't likely to wear a tie unless they're being ironic."
• O'Toole gives two thumbs-up to Hall McKnight's PSNI Memorial Garden in Belfast: "these urbane architects" have created a "soothing place of small mercies, doing just as little as possible but not less than was needed."
• Brussat takes on Saffron aiming her blazing "bazooka" (again) at Stern's American Revolution museum in Philly: though she "makes some good points, most of them should encourage Stern to ramp up what she dislikes rather than to remove or tone down what she dislikes."
• Syracuse, NY, is yet another poster child for the future of urban freeways: the "Berlin Wall" dividing the city's neighborhoods will most likely be torn down, but some "surprising allies" don't think it's such a good idea (surprising, indeed!).
• A serious look is afoot re: whether the weather indicates it's time to build a Thames Barrier v. 2.0: "Some are saying that this wonderful piece of engineering, Brunellian in imagination and scale, needs to be replaced - and fast."
• Chaban reports on a new non-profit seeking profits from First World developers to build prefabricated shelters in Third World cities.
• A "very eclectic" shortlist of 20 in the running to design the Arvo Pärt cultural center in Estonia.
• A most eclectic list of winners of the 2014 P/A Awards: "Jurors focused on innovation, but not for its own sake" (great presentation).
• Call for entries: 2014 Marble Architectural Awards - North America.
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ANN Feature: Informed by Learning: Interview with Joe Valerio and Randy Mattheis about education for the future at the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools: "We wanted to dive deeply into the culture of the school...so one of the first things we did was to participate in its daily life." -- Valerio Dewalt Train Associates- ArchNewsNow
Mecanoo, Martinez + Johnson to renovate MLK Library: The choice of a Dutch firm suggests there may be complicated and painful process ahead...decision is a bold one...it’s hard to be sure of the greater danger: That too much of Mies will be lost, or too many of the interesting aspects of the design team’s proposal will be watered down. By Philip Kennicott -- Mies van der Rohe (1972); Patkau Architects/Ayers Saint Gross; Studios Architecture/The Freelon Group- Washington Post
Mies' famed style shows virtue of simplicity: ...often overlooked is that we have an exceptionally fine building designed by Mies van der Rohe in Pittsburgh — the Richard King Mellon Hall of Science at Duquesne University...has all the rigorous discipline and detail of any of Mies' more famous works. By John Conti [images]- Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Why has Melbourne grown faster than Sydney? A recent paper by Professor Glen Searle (UQ) and Professor Kevin O’Connor (UM) says Melbourne has performed better on a number of key metrics...authors speculate that Sydney’s complex planning rules, “relatively worse transport system”, and poorer investment attraction programs might also have contributed to its lesser performance over the period. By Alan Davies- Crikey (Australia)
Sydney: why this city would be better off without its world famous harbour: ...would Australia's largest metropolis actually benefit from ditching its famous landmarks and concentrating on the rest of it? It seems illogical but it's hard to avoid the sense that cities without such obvious attractions make greater efforts to get the best out of what they do have...good planning, innovation, attractive public spaces...decent transport matter...Try asking someone from Melbourne. By Mike Ticher [images, links]- Guardian (UK)
How the center of S.F.'s skyline will shift: Four office towers are in various stages of construction here, all conceived to appeal to traditional corporations while also hoping to catch the eye of companies whose workers aren't likely to wear a tie unless they're being ironic. By John King- San Francisco Chronicle
PSNI Memorial Garden by Hall McKnight Architects: A memorial garden in Belfast pays a finely judged tribute to the sacrifices of the Police Service of Northern Ireland: ...it should not be surprising that these urbane architects...should be so attuned to the value of shared civic space...this soothing place of small mercies, doing just as little as possible but not less than was needed. By Shane O’Toole [images]- BD/Building Design (UK)
Ramp it up, Bob! Ramp it up! Robert A.M. Stern, the only classicist among American starchitects, designed a new building for the Museum of the American Revolution in Philadelphia...Inga Saffron...came out guns blazing against the design two years ago and now has picked up her bazooka again...[she] still makes some good points, though most of them should encourage Stern to ramp up what she dislikes rather than to remove or tone down what she dislikes. By David Brussat- Architecture Here and There
The Future of Urban Freeways Is Playing Out Right Now in Syracuse: As I-81 nears the end of its functional life, a city struggles to decide the best way forward: ...a "Berlin Wall" dividing the city's neighborhoods...One way or another, the viaduct is coming down...Not everyone...supports tearing down...Save 81 has attracted some surprising allies... By Amy Crawford- The Atlantic Cities
The Thames Barrier has saved London – but is it time for TB2? ...being closed with increasing frequency to protect central London and at-risk areas upriver...Some are saying that this wonderful piece of engineering, Brunellian in imagination and scale, needs to be replaced – and fast.- Telegraph (UK)
Buy a house here, build a house in the Third World: New nonprofit called World Housing negotiates with developers who then set aside $3,000 from home sales to build prefabricated shacks...The buy-one/build-one “social justice” model...has the potential to make a permanent impact in the lives of the less-fortunate. By Matt Chaban [images]- NY Daily News
Zaha Hadid and AZPML line up for Estonian archive: ...among the semi-finalists in an international design competition for a cultural building in Estonia...Arvo Pärt Centre...20 finalists “form a very eclectic group” -- Allied Works Architecture; Alver Arhitektid; Arhitektiburoo Emil Urbel; Coop Himmelb(l)au; Henning Larsen Architects; OFIS arhitekti; Rick Joy Architects; etc.- BD/Building Design (UK)
2014 P/A Awards: The 61st Annual Progressive Architecture Awards: Jurors focused on innovation, but not for its own sake. -- Steven Holl Architects; RUR Architecture; Allied Works Architecture; Rojkind Arquitectos; John Wardle Architects/NADAAA in collaboration; Saucier + Perrotte Architectes/Hughes Condon Marler Architects; Diller Scofidio + Renfro/Gensler; University of Arkansas Community Design Center; Xefirotarch/Hernan Diaz Alonso; Eric Owen Moss Architects- Architect Magazine
Call for entries: 2014 Marble Architectural Awards - North America (projects must be in U.S., Canada, Mexico); deadline: February 28- Internazionale Marmi e Macchine Carrara (IMM Carrara) / Italian Institute for Foreign Trade
-- 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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