Today’s News - Wednesday, August 9, 2017

●  Katz & Nowak parse how U.S. cities "are terrible at managing their public assets," and a new book "promoting a third alternative - public ownership that relies on professional, private-sector management" (see Davidson's take on NYC's public-private partnership pilot program for public housing - click "Yesterday's News").

●  Swope reports on a gathering in NYC of 80 chief resilience officers - "they're part of a pop-up global community that views itself as a movement."

●  Scruggs' Q&A with TU Delft's Roberto Rocco re: a new initiative to figure out how to teach the New Urban Agenda - "new teaching points might be in order."

●  Hume considers "why Toronto remains an underachiever" - it "may be the most important city in Canada. But that hasn't stopped its tendency to self-destruct" (millennials to the rescue?).

●  DeWolf, meanwhile, cheers Montreal's transformation by architects "changing the face of the city with a series of truly creative projects - without the lavish budgets, starchitects, or international fanfare."

●  Not everyone is pleased with Disney's Val d'Europe, a "pseudo-Paris near Paris" complete with "a cluster of imitation belle époque housing blocks surrounding a giant shopping center": "a privatized space run by a multinational corporation" is "the death of the public city."

●  Despite warnings that it could lose its UNESCO World Heritage site status, Liverpool "green-lights more towers" (oh joy).

●  On a brighter note, Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens sports a new theatrical pavilion that is "more air than material - the architecture successfully cedes its identity to the surrounding elements."

●  SOM wins bid to master-plan Sri Lanka's 2.9 billion square-foot (yes, that's a "b") Port City Colombo that will "establish the city as a cultural center for commerce and tourism in South Asia."

●  We cheer the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission (finally) designating the Rose Main Reading Room and Bill Blass Catalog Room as interior landmarks (now, only 11 more rooms to go!).

●  Brussat was blown away by the Nave of Yale's Sterling Memorial Library when it was "covered with the grime and soot of the ages," and (finally) cheers Helpern's meticulous restoration and "cagey ability" for disguise.

●  A round-up of the 9 "most audacious museum designs," from 1892 to 2016, that were never built, but "let you delve into alternative histories."

●  Menking tries to pry info from the U.S. State Department re: why no curator has yet been named for the U.S. pavilion at the 2018 Venice Biennale pavilion: "it seems gears are in motion," but "the clock is ticking."

●  Yours for $15 million: a private island and two Frank Lloyd Wright-attributed houses, accessible only by boat or aircraft (helipad included - we'll take it!).

●  Sisson x 2 from the "The Modernist Next Door" series: Goff's "eccentric" and "otherworldly creations" (definitely click through to 1951 Life magazine feature!).

●  He profiles Arthur T. Brown, Tucson's "humble" desert modernist whose simple structures were "filled with pioneering - and sadly underappreciated - examples of environmentally aware architecture."

Two we couldn't resist:

●  The "new push to send astronauts to Mars" has given "new urgency" to the architectural challenge to keep "Martians and noon-dwellers sane - reminders of home will be necessary."

●  A look at the "darker side" of the total solar eclipse on August 21: "Visitors to some small cities are expected to equal half of entire state populations" (Massive traffic jams! "Prepare to use old-school means of communication!" We're doomed!).

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