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Today’s News - Wednesday, February 15, 2017

•   Virginia Tech's recently-completed FutureHAUS and the facility it was built in go up in flames, but students and faculty are already working on their entry for the Solar Decathlon Dubai in 2018.

•   Small has a great Q&A with "Bulldozer: Demolition and Clearance of the Postwar Landscape" author Ammon "to unpack urban renewal and what it tells us about the idea of waste in cities."

•   Wainwright x 2 (two real ouchers!): Calatrava's £1bn Greenwich Peninsula project "reads as a series of tired tropes bodged together in one clichéd collage. But at least we'll be able to say we've got a Calatrava bridge" (ouch!)

•   He minces no words about what he thinks of public art being used as "a developer's decoy strategy" with "lumps of 'public art' that you might wish would be hauled off to the furnace and boiled back down to the gloop from whence they came" (double ouch!).

•   Gasp! A New York-based artist(?) argues against the NEA: "the basic problem with the government supporting the arts is that it stands in the way of free market competition" (shades of Schumacher?).

•   More on the plans to transform the Thames Estuary into arts hub that "would be one of the biggest redevelopment projects since disused docklands were turned into the Canary Wharf financial hub in the 1980s."

•   Two takes on Apple's "spaceship" HQ: Love says, "The project took a toll on contractors" (door handle approval process says it all).

•   Bogost explains why Apple's new HQ "shows how its beauty has always been skin deep - a monolith meant to be worshiped at sight and by touch. Just don't ask too many questions about how it works in practice."

•   Moore makes the case for why the University of Durham's student union building should be saved: it's "a Brutalist gem in need of renovation - its charms would be more obvious if it wasn't in its current shabby and neglected state."

•   Byrnes cheers Meier's 1995 The Hague City Hall being "Mondrian'd" to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the De Stijl movement.

•   Pedersen offers 10 seriously funny ground rules for design magazine editors: "1.Ugly buildings always photograph better at night - if a media kit's featured image is a nighttime shot, beware, they may be dressing up a turd."

•   Eyefuls of the 5 finalists vying for the 2017 EU Prize for Contemporary Architecture - Mies van der Rohe Award.

•   Eyefuls of the (fabulous!) winners of the Little Free Library Design Competition ("spoiler alert - we all win").

•   Your eye candy for the day: eyefuls of "100 stunning architectural gems" in L.A. (what? no Watts Towers???).

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