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Today’s News - Tuesday, August 11, 2015

•   ArcSpace brings us eyefuls of 7 factories that "disrupt the expected typology through playful and unexpected materials or challenge conventional forms."

•   Keller pens a most thoughtful piece about Soleri's Arcosanti and dreams of arcologies and mega-cities - but "it's not clear that humanity is ready for the perfect architectural utopias - the fundamental problem with planned communities" is that "they often forget about the people who inhabit them."

•   Hawthorne gets the scoop straight from the horse's mouth re: Gehry's L.A. River plan: "He thinks it could be turned into an entirely different kind of machine," though the "news that the mayor is handing off planning to Gehry's office is already upsetting longtime river advocates. Their skepticism is understandable."

•   Walker x 2 re: Gehry's L.A. River plan: Why he is a "wrong," "strange," and "scary" choice for the project, especially when there's a master plan already in place: "In a city that is already stereotyped for choosing celebrity over substance, this is hyping fame over function. It's a decision that will come to haunt us."

•   She has second thoughts after considering Hawthorne's analysis: "The tech he brings to the table and the team he'll bring together is sure to be top-rate. This might make Gehry less of a LA River master planner and more of an LA River mascot."

•   Bernstein talks to Friedberg re: plans for a new World War I Memorial in Pershing Park: "The honorable thing would have been to come to me first"; the competition organizers consider it "a 35-year-old failed park," but if they "are advised to pay deference to the existing park, then we will."

•   The Australian Institute of Architects' Kirk makes a case for why the proposed (gigantic) Brisbane casino should not be built in the historic government precinct: the project "should be a catalyst for regenerating an eroded city location and to heal an urban scar."

•   Flanagan reports on the (yet again) revised Mecanoo/Martinez + Johnson plans for Mies's Martin Luther King Library in DC: "fixing the building's flaws within historic preservation rules has been the toughest challenge," and "the driver behind the biggest design changes."

•   Twentieth Century Society's Brittain-Catlin continues to advocate for Robin Hood Gardens: "the physical state and the controversial aesthetics are not really at the heart of the question of whether RHG should be protected."

•   King gives cautious thumbs-up to the massive 5M development in San Francisco's SoMa: "There's a lot to like in the conceptual plans. There's also no denying the awkwardness - the end result needs to feel like a dynamic outgrowth of its surroundings - rather than a real estate deal writ large."

•   Bozikovic spends some quality time with Dykers and concludes that "Snøhetta is rewriting the rules of global architecture and landscape. Their work has no set style and no manifesto. It is visually bold, but shaped by observation and empathy."

•   Google grows bigger in Boulder with a new 4-acre campus, but as the tech community cheers, others worry it will "exacerbate rather than mitigate our affordable housing and transportation problems."

•   Eyefuls of New Zealand's shiny, new "kinetic" museum dedicated to sculptor Len Lye (lots of shiny!).

•   The Minneapolis Sculpture Garden begins a two-year renovation that will "dramatically transform the garden and the neighboring Walker Art Center" (Gehry's two-story-high "Standing Glass Fish" is heading to his Weisman Art Museum on a long-term loan - still unclear if it will ever return).

•   Zeiger's Q&A with Sinclair re: his new, for-profit "social impact practice," the Department of Small Works: "Why is it that people who are developing, leading, and implementing projects are expected to work for nothing?"

•   AIA launches "Know Your Worth" campaign against unpaid internships.

•   Call for entries: U.S. Department of Energy RFI for high-performance energy efficiency measures in commercial buildings + Research: Art Works: NEA grants to investigate the value and/or impact of the arts.


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