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Today’s News - Tuesday, January 26, 2016

•   ArcSpace brings us Kiser's take (and great pix!) of the Len Lye Centre in New Zealand: "its sculptural steel exterior and subtle kinetic interior light shifts embody and personify Lye and his body of work."

•   Kennicott ponders why we need to build another World War I memorial, and parses why none of the five finalists' designs "rises to a standard" that should be championed - the "same clichés keep recurring"; meanwhile, we'll know who the winner at 2pm today.

•   Capps parses how "Chicago leaders are horse-trading with the cultural resources of poorer neighborhoods" and "setting a dangerous precedent" in its plans for the Obama Library - excellent points made (but a regrettable "bound to fail" title).

•   Welton cheers the coming of Raleigh's 308-acre Dix Park, and hopes the city is up to the challenge of getting it right, which "means looking back to the recent past for lessons learned from the politics of design" (with tips from some notable landscape architects who might be in the running for the master plan).

•   A fascinating look at "why Copenhagen is building parks that can turn into ponds": they're "cheaper - and more fun" than a massive sewer expansion, with a "remarkable payback for society as a whole."

•   While proposed style guides to regulate Sydney's architecture may be well-meaning, they could "ultimately be abused. The issue falls down to the difference between the roles of a planner and a designer."

•   Kimmelman cheers two NYC projects that are "proof that affordable housing can still be done right. Neither project splurged on design, but in both cases, architecture mattered, to save energy, improve the neighborhood, spread dignity, add joy" (dignity and joy - a joy to hear!).

•   Budds looks at a "bold experiment" in New Orleans as a model of "design for the 50%" - i.e., homes the middle class can afford.

•   De la Mare explains "why schools and hospitals should be more like theme parks" ("delight," "surprise" - and dare we say joy - included).

•   A North Carolina startup "is using bacteria to grow bricks from scratch" (heat and clay not needed).

•   Widmer pens a most eloquent ode to Sert, "a Mediterranean humanist who lost his way in Boston's skyline."

•   Heritage conservation architect Flaman bemoans the fate of Wiens' Silton Chapel, a Modernist masterpiece: "For the lack of eight glulam beams, we may lose another critically important and poetic piece of Canadian architecture" (amazing pix!).

•   Zeiger cheers Hejduk's The House of the Suicide memorial (finally) finding a new life in Prague: "These projects have been looking for a home for 30 years."

•   Volner spends some serious time at Yale's "Place & Pedagogy" exhibition - and with soon-to-be former Dean Stern - to explore the school's legacy - and Stern's own: he "says he'll keeping pacing the winding hallways of Rudolph Hall as long as they'll let him."

•   Three finalists in the running to win the PXSTL design-build competition in St. Louis.

•   Call for entries: International competition to design a 3-hectare urban park in Prato (Tuscany), Italy + Mies van der Rohe Foundation's "Fear of Columns" international competition to design a temporary recreation of the columns and pedestals for Mies's 1929 Barcelona Pavilion + Association of Siamese Architects International Design Competition 2016: What is the new "Basic"?

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