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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What Designers Should Do Now: We spoke with more than a dozen design leaders. The consensus? Designing for social reform will be more important than ever under Trump: ...people began to turn grief into a powerful call-to-action. -- Michael Bierut/Pentagram; Jessica Helfand/Design Observer; Milton Glaser; Justin Garrett Moore/NYC Public Design Commission; Garrett Jacobs/Open Architecture Collaborative; Vishaan Chakrabarti/Practice for Architecture and Urbanism (PAU); Ed Mazria/Architecture 2030; Phil Freelon/Perkins+Will; Yves Béhar/Fuseproject; etc.- Fast Company / Co.Design
Matt Shaw: Feel Good Story: The National Museum of African American History and Culture proves that architecture is still relevant: ...truly delivers something that few pieces of architecture can...a vehicle for the triumph of African-American history on the national stage...transcends its value as a museum... -- J. Max Bond/Davis Brody Bond; Phil Freelon; David Adjaye; SmithGroupJJR [images]- The Architect's Newspaper
The U.S. Capitol Dome Restoration is Complete: After two years of meticulous repairs led by Architect of the Capitol Stephen T. Ayers, FAIA, along with architect-of-record Hoffman Architects, the historic landmark is now back to its former glory...Hoffman Architects has been working on the master plan since 1990. [images]- Architect Magazine
Bates Smart to design new Australian Embassy in Washington, DC: ...will replace the current building, designed by...Bates, Smart and McCutcheon in 1964...The existing embassy has reportedly been wrapped in scaffolding since 2014... “regarded as dilapidated and even approaching an occupational health and safety issue.” [images]- ArchitectureAU (Australia)
Reaching for sky in Providence: Proposed high-rises include 55-story tower: ...three high-end residential towers...far higher than anything else in the city and beyond what's currently allowed by city zoning regulations...."Hope Point Towers"...If they want it, Fane said he wants to build it. And if they don't...he'll go away. -- Sol Wassermuhl/IBI Group [images]- Providence Journal (Rhode Island)
David Brussat: Towering towers in La Prov? ...proposed to build three residential towers...rising 33, 43 and 55 stories up from the vacant Jewelry District land...Zoning allows seven stories...max 10 under some circumstances...Except for the goofy-looking picture-window pods...the architecture isn’t quite as abysmal as we have all come to expect...The big question is whether this ambitious proposal is for real or some sort of joke... -- Sol Wassermuhl/IBI Group- Architecture Here and There
Uncommon Ground: With housing affordability on the tips of our collective tongues, MEZZANINE talks to Jeremy McLeod about a revolutionary new architecturally-driven concept for apartment living...Nightingale Housing - a social enterprise rewriting the rulebooks on apartment design and living. -- Breathe Architecture; James Legge/Six Degrees; Andrew Maynard/Austin Maynard Architects; Clare Cousins Architects [images]- Australian Design Review
Rowan Moore: The Design Museum - a magnificent achievement: There’s the awkwardness of the adjoining luxury apartments, and a lot of oak, but the new Design Museum is the laudable result of a decade’s dogged effort...it may seem like a gratuitous act of party-pooping to suggest that they have got the appointment of the project’s designers the wrong way round...both seem to be playing out of position, trying to work with situations with which they don’t feel entirely comfortable. -- Deyan Sudjic; John Pawson; Rem Koolhaas/OMA [images]- Observer (UK)
Oliver Wainwright: Design Museum - temple to design gets the space it deserves at last: The museum can now show its permanent collection - but John Pawson’s blonde wood conversion of an imperial relic could have been so much more exciting: This icon of post-war optimism has been reborn... -- Deyan Sudjic; OMA; Allies and Morrison; Justin McGuirk [images]- Guardian (UK)
Oliver Wainwright: A gilded fantasyland? How Trump might furnish the White House: ...the White House preservation committee must be trembling with trepidation...A peek inside their...home at the top of Trump Tower suggests the dial will be turned back a few centuries - and that, along with ramping up coal extraction, they might have to reopen the gold mines...It makes Liberace look like a minimalist...Washington, DC beware. [images]- Guardian (UK)
With Trump Elected, Frank Gehry Wants to Move to France: French president Francois Hollande has given him his word that he could self-exile to France...Gehry has a long standing dispute with the president-elect, going back to 2010, when the Beekman Tower in Manhattan, designed by Gehry, surpassed the Trump Building located just next to it by a few centimeters...In a frightening campaign that saw one debate devolve into a discussion about the size of his manhood, it is safe to assume that those few centimeters hurt Trump.- artnet News
Josephine Minutillo: The Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art at UC Davis: A 2013 competition for the school’s first purpose-built art museum...called for a structure that would be a magnet on the sprawling campus...the university certainly got its money’s worth, and then some. -- Florian Idenburg/Jing Liu/SO-IL; Bohlin Cywinski Jackson [images]- Architectural Record
Tableau Software's new NorthEdge building has a modern vibe and industrial past: A transformation at the north end of Seattle's Lake Union is complete...Gas Works, which still has the remnants of the country's last coal gasification plant that operated until 1956, inspired the design...rustic and modern materials...harmonize with the old machinery -- Perkins+Will [images]- Puget Sound Business Journal (Seattle)
Rayna Razmilic: Temple of Light: The recently opened Bahá’í Temple for South America took 14 years to come to fruition - without those years of research and development, this ambitious project would never have seen the light...stands on the foothills overlooking Chile’s capital city, Santiago. -- Hariri Pontarini Architects; Juan Grimm (landscape architect) [images]- Metropolis Magazine
Designs released for Melbourne laneway transformation: Draft designs for four Melbourne CBD laneways that are to be transformed as part of the $1.3 million Green Your Laneway pilot program have been released. [images]- Australian Design Review
Kriston Capps: Soon Enough, Every Bridge Everywhere Will Have Fancy Lighting: “Emotive lighting” for infrastructure is the big new thing. Is there a way to embrace LED spectacles without being tacky about it? With New York and London on board, this trend isn’t going anywhere soon...upgrading systems to LEDs is inevitable. With that move comes the opportunity to throw in some low-cost civic razzle-dazzle... [images]- CityLab (formerly The Atlantic Cities)
Dalya Alberge: Save our brutalist masterpieces, says top heritage expert: Simon Thurley, former head of English Heritage, warns 20th-century buildings risk becoming ‘black hole’ in history: ...modernist legacy is being betrayed by a wrong-headed approach to 20th-century architecture...The problem is compounded by an unimaginative approach by conservationists.- Guardian (UK)
Call for entries: Call for Papers: 54th International Making Cities Livable Conference: "Public Places for Community, Democracy, Health & Equity"; Santa Fe, New Mexico, October 2-6, 2017; deadline: January 31, 2017- International Making Cities Livable (IMCL)
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