Today’s News - Tuesday, May 2, 2017

●   We lose Acconci, an "audacious artist" turned "experimental architect - he committed to making public spaces that were both utilitarian and playful."

●   McKeough revisits Acconci with a fascinating 2007 profile "about his unexpected foray into architecture."

●   A bridge too far: Wainwright parses the demise of London's Garden Bridge, "fiercely opposed by supporters of gardens and bridges alike, of which this vanity project was clearly never either."

●   Heatherwick weighs in on the "endless political wrangling": "It is always easier to stop an unusual new idea than to make it happen. I firmly believe [the Garden Bridge] will happen one day" (comments mince no words, too).

●   Lumley goes on the attack: "I hope we're not turning into the sort of country that instantly says no before it considers saying yes. The silent majority still loves the bridge, but of course they were not asked what they think."

●   Lane calls for Garden Bridge funding to go to new pedestrian crossings that are actually needed: "There has been plenty of proposals - all are far cheaper than the Garden Bridge."

●   Elledge ponders: "Where did it all go wrong? It should have been great. So how did something so lovely end up so loathed?"

●   O'Sullivan says: "Good riddance to London's age of fanciful, functionless infrastructure. It won't be missed" - along with his a litany of other "major hare-brained schemes that actually made it through."

●   On a much (much!) brighter note (we hope!): the new federal spending bill would spare - and even slightly increase - funding for PBS, NEA, and NEH.

●   Kunzig considers "the world's most improbable green city": Dubai "had one of the largest ecological footprints of any city in the world. By 2050 it wants to have the smallest" - and many "believe the city might actually pull that off" ("when camels fly," perhaps?).

●   Hosey, on the other hand, hails Washington, DC, as the "quiet capital of sustainable design," with codes and laws "considered a national model" (who knew?!!?).

●   Boston planners and green space advocates hope "to fulfill Olmsted's vision" of the city's "green necklace" by transforming a homely, traffic-clogged road into a greenway - the city "has tentatively embraced the idea" (but no funding - yet).

●   Kimmelman takes issue with the NY State governor's plan to fix Penn Station: "In effect, Cuomo wants to slap a two-car garage onto a dilapidated split-level and declare the property good as new" (oh joy).

●   Dunlap, meanwhile, gives thumbs-up to 3 new "ethereal" and "diaphanous cable-stayed bridges" in New York that "are already transforming the skyline."

●   Hawthorne tells the tale of Paul R. Williams and his connection to the "bleak" 25th anniversary of the L.A. riots: a Williams-designed bank building "went up in flames," along with "a large chunk of his archive. Race can never be detached from any discussion of his relative prominence in Los Angeles or in the profession."

●   Anderton takes us on a tour of Mayne's replacement for Ray Bradbury's house that he promised "would honor Bradbury. Did they deliver?" (the neighbors think so).

●   As Cuba "embraces global tourism" with lots of international hoteliers renovating historic buildings, "what will happen to those less prominent and more sensitive relics?"

●   Gopnik tells us how wonderful it was to grow up Safdie's Habitat, which, "for sheer sensory excitement, could not and cannot be matched" - but so many other Brutalist gems have been demolished.

●   A good reason to head to NYC at the end of the week: the National Planning Conference: NPC17 has the big three: Location. Learning. Connections.

●   Call for entries (reminder: deadline looms!): WAF Awards + INSIDE World Festival of Interiors Awards 2017.

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