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Today’s News - Tuesday, August 18, 2015

EDITOR'S NOTE: We won't be posting the newsletter tomorrow because we'll be swimming with fishies - well, actually riding WXY's SeaGlass carousel (check out Dunlap's review and video below, and you'll understand why we decided to make it a no-newsletter day!). We'll be back Thursday...

•   Wainwright minces no words about what he thinks of the winning design for a youth center next to the now-listed Preston Bus Station: it's getting "a zombie makeover - a gigantic fridge-freezer. What an insult."

•   Keith offers a most thoughtful take on what it will take to make life livable in 2065: "The naïve belief in technological fixes to deep social and economic problems has left many lasting scars in the urban landscape...we need to lay solid foundations for the future by developing the deepest possible understanding of the present" so we'll have "the very best chance to thrive."

•   Budds delves deep into how much design plays a role in making innovation districts work: they can be a "potent driver for growth - but it's who moves in that will ultimately deem them successes."

•   As China exports "its own version of urbanization" across Africa, an architect and a journalist have been investigating "whether China's model of urbanism can work in Africa. Their conclusion? Doubtful" (with pix to prove it - ugh).

•   Iyer finds intriguing similarities between Las Vegas and the North Korean capital Pyongyang: "both really felt like hallucinations, designed to dazzle (or defeat) the innocent...both cities are products of a mid-20th-century spirit that saw what power and profit could be found in constructing mass fantasies ab nihilo" (a great read!).

•   Russell cheers the evolution of the National Mall that "promises to be subtle, yet extraordinary, and brings a human scale and an appealing American idealism to spaces where self-conscious and overbearing grandeur have held sway for too long."

•   The 40-year saga of what is bringing downtown Columbus, Ohio, "back from the undead": reclaiming its once-dammed river plays a huge part.

•   Dunlap has a whirlingly good time at the SeaGlass carousel about to open in Lower Manhattan: "Don't expect a carousel ride like any you remember"; children's "laughter echoed in the pavilion, sounding a bit like dolphins on the loose" (check out the video! We'll be doing the same tomorrow morning - hence, no newsletter).

•   Q&A with TCLF's Birnbaum re: the fate of Friedberg's Pershing Park in light of the World War I Memorial design competition, "and how the submissions threaten the integrity of the site."

•   Brussat can barely contain his joy at seeing the classic design for the University of Notre Dame's new School of Architecture (designed by a Brit) that "beautifully suggests its role in rolling back the continuing attack on the built environment. May the new campus be swiftly erected, occupied with brio, and boost the spirit of the classical revival!"

•   We love happy endings: how the Portland chapter of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority bought an abandoned, smelly, graffiti-smeared gas station and "turned into a shimmering eco-paradise" for the community.

•   Why prefab could be "the new frontier" - once it gets over its "enduring image problem," it "may provide an antidote to a skills shortage in the construction industry and alleviate a housing affordability crisis."

•   St. Hill has a great take on Perry/FAT's A House for Essex: it's "a suitably 'bonkers' addition to the north Essex landscape. As bonkers as the architecture is, the story behind it is even more bizarre, playful and just a little bit disturbing."

•   An investigation into the ballooning cost of Kuma's V&A Dundee finds it "could never be built to budget," and recommends that, "in future, decision making for major projects including the selection of designs should be supported by fully detailed cost estimates" (what a concept!).

•   Pearman explains why he's an architecture critic and not an architect, and "how the worlds of writing and architecture are so very close" (another great read).

•   The Chicago Architecture Biennial issues the complete (and impressive!) roster of more than 100 architects and artists from more than 30 countries participating in its inaugural year.

•   Call for entries: Participate in "Extraordinary Playscapes," a new national touring exhibition and education program.



  

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