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Today’s News - Wednesday, June 3, 2015

EDITOR'S NOTE: Due to technical difficulties beyond our control, we were unable to post the newsletter yesterday (oh, those pesky technology gods!). Sorry 'bout that...

•   Vanderbilt dissects the psychology of skyscrapers: "There seems to be a lingering, Babel-inflected mixture of awe and unease with the idea of 'living the sky'" (totally fascinating read!).

•   Some cheer the approval of towering development plans for Australia's "largest urban renewal site" in Melbourne's Fishermans Bend.

•   Others consider the approval of Fishermans Bend to be "scandalous": "With no mandatory height limits or minimum dwelling sizes, developers will only be after the tallest and most upmarket apartment blocks."

•   Moore minces no words about what he thinks of the "lamentable, regressive" Tory housing policy: "There will be no social justice in the fact that it will give some people huge benefits and make life worse for others. It gets worse."

•   The first installments of a great series on Seattle: is it "a model for sustainable cities, or just a mess?"; it's "on the front lines" in the battle against climate change; and "the rent is too damn high."

•   Architecture now "wants to trick you into taking the stairs. Active design principles may be sneaky and compelling, but will they be effective?"

•   Kamin practically kvells over Chicago's "bold and potentially brilliant reinvention" of the 606 that, along with NYC's High Line, "symbolize the movement to soften hard-edged urban areas without turning them into watered-down versions of suburbia."

•   Keegan, on the other hand, wonders: "Is that all there is?" when it comes to the 606: it's a "simple, clear and modest design," but could have been "bolder" in spots (though he does like "the focus on the experience rather than stuff").

•   An extensive take on building Calatrava's Margaret McDermott Bridge in Dallas, where "two cranes perform a precise pas de deux" in a "heavy metal ballet."

•   A survey of British landscape professionals and landscape architects finds that "sustainability is a low priority for landscape clients."

•   Dunne brings us eyefuls of LinkedIn's new digs in the Empire State Building that is "a departure from the industry's tech-bro playground approach to real estate," but even without slides, the company "still went all out" with the design.

•   Wilson seems to be a bit cynical about Uber's planned San Francisco digs: it is "building a giant glass campus to prove it has nothing to hide. Ha! If architecture has ever manifested as a piece of much-needed PR, it's Uber's new campus."

•   The second largest waterfall in the U.S. that's been "haunted by empty industrial buildings" for years is about to get a Riverwalk by Mayer/Reed, Snøhetta, and DIALOG (looks cool!).

•   An impressive international shortlist vies to master plan a massive site near Hadid's MAXXI in Rome.

•   Mao mulls the VAI/GSD design competition survey results: yes, they can be flawed, but "adapting them as a public tool can play a part in making the changes in the urban environment that much more understandable."

•   The WMF taps co-founder and former president of Friends of the High Line Joshua David to be its next president.

•   Populous teams up with U.K.-based Jump Studios.

•   Architecture 00 and Studio Weave merge "to grow a super studio with even bigger ambitions."

•   Call for entries: National Museum of Memory, Colombia, international design competition.


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