Today’s News - Tuesday, August 15, 2017

●  Marshall ponders the "collapse of London's Garden Bridge dream," and considers how best to "emulate Manhattan's High Line": "Done wrong, High Lines could become the latest in a long list of urban design failures."

●  Meanwhile, London's mayor is "very angry" that "more than £46 million of public money has effectively been squandered" on the now-never-to-be-built Garden Bridge across the Thames (Boris Johnson is none too pleased).

●  The Garden Bridge Trust's Davies thinks the "mayor has let many people down" over the "ambitious, beautiful, free to use" bridge, "yet I still hope that one day the Garden Bridge will happen."

●  Five years after the Christchurch quake, the architects and planners of the city's rebuild blueprint "stand by their plan," even though only three of the numerous anchor projects are completed (perhaps "the blueprint team could have asked for more time") + Anchor projects progress report.

●  Florida's building codes, "once hailed as the gold standard other states should emulate, are under assault" by the state Building Commission "dominated by home builders and contractors," and a new law that "untethers Florida's code from ICC standards" (Hurricane season? Climate change? Aw pshaw).

●  A look at who could be blamed when building materials fail: just about anyone associated with a project - "for the architect, it's all about documentation" (especially when it comes to value engineering).

●  Kotkin & Cox "expose America's great mass transit hoax": it's time to "jettison the quasi-religious affection for rail transit" and "wasting billions of dollars to serve an urban theology popular among planners, speculators and engineering firms."

●  Meanwhile, we'll find out later today what's in Trump's infrastructure executive order - "details of just how that plan would be executed have been slow in coming."

●  Kimmelman is quite taken by DS+R/Rockwell's Shed at NYC's Hudson Yards: "this faintly quaint, eloquently designed contraption" is "more aesthetic and functional than the clunky, pointless climbing gym" by Heatherwick, "the gifted but unreliable British showman."

●  EC3's (very cool) collection of lightweight Quonset huts dubbed True North Detroit is a "live-work prefab development for the city's growing creative class" (with more planned).

●  It looks like Gehry's $1-billion Grand Avenue project in Los Angeles, in the works for over a decade, might see shovels hit the dirt next year.

●  Some Apple employees "are reportedly unhappy with workspaces" in the new Foster-designed $5 billion campus - they "want the cubicles and old offices they left behind."

●  Loew parses Columbus, Indiana, "the Midwest town that designs above its weight," and new initiatives that "may cultivate its reputation for years to come."

●  A rather brutal day for Brutalism: Vartanian is aghast at a recent photo of the "hideous blue building" now attached to Rudolph's Orange County Government Center: it "looks like a tacky condo - or maybe a tiny IKEA store" - it is "a special type of building that makes you want to scream."

●  Not all are pleased with Parry's plans to replace an "outstanding" Brutalist parking garage in London: it "has a distinctive geometric motif, placing it at the 'lighter' end of the Brutalist spectrum" (but doesn't "compare well with 'more striking buildings in the Pop Art movement'" - oh really?).

●  It will cost about half-a-mil to turn San Francisco's Vaillancourt Fountain (the "fountain everyone hates") back on: "Apparently, restoring the gratuitous geyser to working order is not so simple as turning a tap."

●  Desmarais makes the case for why the "cockeyed concrete tangle" that is the Vaillancourt Fountain ("Temko insisted must have been 'deposited by a concrete dog with square intestines'") "deserves respect - and water."

●  A round-up of 41 buildings that might just be "the world's ugliest. Fans of Brutalism, be warned: you might disagree with some of our choices."

●  On a much brighter note: Canadian Architect's second annual round-up of Canada's top emerging talent (great presentations).

●  Artsy talks to Kalman and Al-Sabouni about the future of Aleppo, and "Future Aleppo," a Syrian boy's hand-built a model of what his hometown might look like after the civil war - there's only a few more days to see it in Los Angeles.

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