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Today’s News - Monday, January 5, 2015

EDITOR'S NOTE: We're b-a-a-c-k! And with lots of catching up to do. The old year ended and the new year begins with regrets and resolutions, diatribes and dissertations. Plus ça change plus c'est la meme. Happy New Year!

•   Russell takes issue with starchitects becoming "whipping boys and girls in anger about concentrated global wealth" being blamed "for sins shared by society. When we are ready to transform communities and lives, architects are ready to do that with boldness, innovation and sensitivity."

•   Betsky begs to differ with Bingler and Pedersen's "How to Rebuild Architecture" in the NYT "that is so pointless and riddled with clichés as to beggar comprehension."

•   Brussat, on the other hand, cheers Bingler and Pedersen on: they "do not seem to realize it, and would probably not admit it, but their essay" was more than "just a critique of modern architecture or a call for traditional architecture."

•   Lest we forget Prince Charles's latest architectural/urban manifesto, Murphy says the "new set of rules for architectural practice might be his silliest intervention yet," and offers up "10 much better ones."

•   Hopkirk talks to architects who "grudgingly accept Prince Charles's urban design manifesto": "He's got 10 good ingredients but it depends what you cook with them."

•   Gorlin minces no words about what he thinks of the Chartres Cathedral makeover: "This is cultural vandalism of the lowest order. The present work is arrogant and brutal, not done with the humility and sensitivity that this greatest of sacred spaces demands" (with his own pix to prove it).

•   Dunlop calls for "an international competition to find an innovative modern architect" to build a new library at the Glasgow School of Art - not a Mackintosh replica.

•   Wainwright offers a thoughtful (and often amusing) list of New Year's resolutions for architects: "ditch the Lego, outlaw the 'facadectomy' [and "poor doors"]. Defend the meaning of public space. More gardens and bridges ... but not a garden bridge."

•   Glancey offers a glimpse of architectural highlights to keep an eye on in 2015.

•   Bevan cheers London museums and cultural buildings getting makeovers in this era of "development on a scale not seen for more than a generation - but for all the many billions being spent almost nothing is being spent on arts premises."

•   Hawthorne ponders trends in 2014, when "architecture spent the year puzzling over its own self-sufficiency, finding various ways to wonder if it is capable, for the first time in a long while, of standing on its own two feet - maybe we'll start seeing answers to that question" this year.

•   Betsky proffers 2014's "10 lamentable moments and 10 reasons for hope in architecture."

•   Capps lists the "11 worst buildings of 2014": the "dubious designs and blustering egos should be read as a plea for 2015: Leave Frank Gehry alone. It's time for a new punching bag."

•   Moore minces no words about what he thinks of Viñoly's Walkie Talkie: it's "bloated, inelegant, thuggish" and "has no meaningful or enjoyable relationship to anything else, either at street level or on the skyline" (ouch!).

•   Kamin has high hopes for Gang's 88-story Wanda Vista Tower in Chicago's "high-rise building boom that's mostly been a snooze. No bland glass box here" (even though the design "needs work").

•   Kimmelman has high hopes for MASS Design Group's two new "simple, even handsome" clinics in Haiti that "could be models for other struggling countries that lack resources for high-end Western-style hospitals."

•   Fitch and Kloberdanz explain the comeback of the suburbs: "the rebound undercuts the notion that affluent buyers have seen the LED light and given up on their McMansion dreams," but they're "evolving and becoming more, well, urban-like."

•   Hopes are high for the 11th Street Bridge Park across DC's Anacostia River, but "if we end up building a bridge park and people who were part of the process can no longer afford to live here, we have failed."

•   Call for entries (deadline looms!): DWR Champagne Chair Contest (one of our faves!).



  

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