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Today’s News - Tuesday, December 9, 2014

EDITOR'S NOTE: Tomorrow is this week's "floating" no-newsletter day. We'll be back Thursday, December 11.

•   Holl beats out a roster of shortlisted starchitects to design new wing for Mumbai's oldest museum + Local press reports some are concerned about losing an adjacent playground, but are assured (sort of) that "the area will remain a public space."

•   Florida parses a recent study re: arts hubs and their roles in urban economic development: while they "are not a silver bullet for cities, their role is 'highly underestimated.'"

•   West digs deep into some of the (astounding) reasons why 1WTC isn't as green as it's supposed to be (Superstorm Sandy was only part of the problem).

•   Kim counsels 1WTC to "take heart" despite all the criticism, and offers a round-up of other iconic skyscrapers that "were initially criticized, only to later be widely admired, or at least accepted, as part of their cities' skylines."

•   It looks like Piano may be designing the "final piece of the Barangaroo puzzle" with three residential towers that "will no doubt rekindle the debate about the use of public space and whether the proposed height and scale is appropriate for Sydney."

•   Hadid minces no words about the cadre of Japanese architects criticizing her Tokyo stadium, saying it's "embarrassing" for the architects - and calls them "hypocrites."

•   Meanwhile, Walker and Clagett mince no words about what they think of Hadid's design for a London billboard: it's a "butt-ugly heap of twisting sheet metal"; "space junk"; and "its aesthetic traction is questionable. The design is a retread..." (ouch!).

•   On a more positive note, Moore picks "the five most inspiring buildings of 2014."

•   Architectural historian Brown pleads for an end to the architecture wars between traditionalists and modernists: "Unfortunately, differences in opinion can become toxic when the opponents meet," but there must be a way to make peace.

•   A proposal by Gwathmey Siegel Kaufman to save Rudolph's County Government Center could be a model for saving other endangered landmarks: "perhaps the solution lies with architects taking a financial stake - such as a $1 million deposit accompanying the firm's proposal, may prove more effective."

•   Capps can't believe Memphis "is only doubling down on the bad juju" that has followed the city's "infamous" Pyramid, and could put the city "on the hook for millions if the deal falls apart" (it wouldn't be the first time).

•   Lubell calls for L.A. to get serious about building more affordable housing that is "essential for a vibrant and diverse" city - and suggests ways it could be done.

•   Ferro looks into Maltzan's "quest to remake housing for the homeless": "You can't just give them an apartment and expect things to work out," says he.

•   Eyefuls of the design approaches and solutions proposed by the five teams participating in the Re-envisioning Branch Libraries initiative.

•   Heathcote pays eloquent tribute to Mackay: "His dedication to making urban settings better for everyday life became pivotal in the way cities are now planned."

•   Call for entries: Harvard GSD 2015 Wheelwright Prize Competition (registration doesn't open until January, but guidelines are posted - use the holiday break to get a jump on things!) + Expression of Interest/EOI: Nine Elms to Pimlico Bridge Competition for a pedestrian and cycle bridge across the Thames + Architecture Podium International Architecture Awards 2015.


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