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Today’s News - Wednesday, November 16, 2016

•   ArcSpace brings us Büro Ole Scheeren's "pixilated" MahaNakhon tower in Bangkok.

•   More than a dozen design leaders turn their "grief" over the election results "into a powerful call-to-action. Designing for social reform will be more important than ever under Trump."

•   Finally! Some bright notes from DC: Shaw savors the "feel good story" re: the National Museum of African American History and Culture that (with a few quibbles) "proves that architecture is still relevant."

•   The U.S. Capitol Dome restoration, completed under budget and on time, is ready for its close-up.

•   Bates Smart wins the competition to design the new Australian Embassy in Washington, DC - it will be light-filled and oh-so-green.

•   Three soaring towers proposed for Providence, RI, though not all are pleased; the developer says he's ready to build, but if the city doesn't want it, "he'll go away."

•   Brussat seems to be of two minds about the towers: "Except for the goofy-looking picture-window pods, the architecture isn't quite as abysmal as we have all come to expect" - or is "this ambitious proposal for real or some sort of joke?"

•   Breathe Architecture's McLeod talks about "a revolutionary new architecturally-driven concept" for affordable housing that is "a social enterprise rewriting the rulebooks."

•   Moore marvels at the "magnificent achievement" that is London's reborn Design Museum - though "it may seem like a gratuitous act of party-pooping to suggest that they have got the appointment of the project's designers [Pawson and OMA] the wrong way round."

•   Wainwright x 2: He also cheers the rebirth of the Design Museum, an "icon of post-war optimism" - though "Pawson's blonde wood conversion of an imperial relic could have been so much more exciting."

•   He ponders (most humorously!) what the Trump White House might look like, considering the "gilded fantasyland" that is their Trump Tower penthouse: "along with ramping up coal extraction, they might have to reopen the gold mines. It makes Liberace look like a minimalist."

•   In the meantime, it appears that the French president has offered Gehry asylum because of "a long standing dispute," when Gehry's Beekman Tower surpassed Trump's building next door "by a few centimeters" - considering the "discussion about the size of his manhood" during the campaign, "it is safe to assume that those few centimeters hurt Trump."

•   Moving on to more meaningful commentary, Minutillo cheers SO-IL and BCJ's Shrem Museum of Art at UC Davis: it "called for a structure that would be a magnet on the sprawling campus - the university certainly got its money's worth, and then some."

•   P+W's new HQ for Tableau Software, inspired by the country's last coal gasification plant at the north end of Seattle's Lake Union, "has a modern vibe and industrial past."

•   Razmilic raves about Hariri Pontarini's Bahá'í Temple for South America overlooking Santiago, Chile: it "took 14 years to come to fruition" (9 just to find the site) - but "without those years of research and development, this ambitious project would never have seen the light" (glorious light!).

•   Melbourne has big plans to transform its laneways with the Green Your Laneway pilot program.

•   Capps on a trend that "isn't going anywhere soon" - "emotive" LED lighting for infrastructure that offers "the opportunity to throw in some low-cost civic razzle-dazzle."

•   Alberge talks to former English Heritage head Thurley, who "warns 20th-century buildings risk becoming a 'black hole' in history" because of "a wrong-headed approach to 20th-century architecture - compounded by an unimaginative approach by conservationists."

•   Call for entries: Call for Papers: 54th International Making Cities Livable Conference: "Public Places for Community, Democracy, Health & Equity," in Santa Fe next October.



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