Today’s News - Tuesday, January 9, 2018

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●  We lose ZGF's Bob Frasca, who "played an important role in the evolution of Portland as one of America's most livable cities," and "integrated nature, healing gardens, and art into his health-care buildings long before research proved their importance."

●  Goldberger pens an oh-so eloquent tribute to John Portman: "his buildings, for all their failings, are enjoying a new popularity - there is something exotic about them now, a vision of the future that is simultaneously audacious and quaint."

●  AIA 2018 President Elefante offers three "compelling reasons to believe that 2018 can be a threshold moment for architecture," and "a year of possibility."

●  While Weiss cheers a boom in urban development and a "spectacular array" of "sleek" and "posh" projects finishing up in 2018, his focus is on three projects that address income inequality in Brooklyn, Chicago, and Los Angeles.

●  Hume is less optimistic, saying Toronto's "homeless shelter crisis reveals an unabashed attempt to legitimize inequality" (too bad the homeless don't have cars).

●  Gehl's Risom & Madriz report on their adventures in Buenos Aires: they were asked "to help redesign the city's most iconic informal settlement and learned to appreciate what residents had already built. These urban spaces need public support that doesn't over-regulate the organic life that has bloomed in its absence."

●  Lamster weighs in on Snøhetta's "draconian" proposal for Johnson's AT&T Building: Its "Postmodern monumentality would be replaced by the kind of transparency made fashionable by Apple stores everywhere - moving forward should not entail erasing the past, however complex and contradictory that might be."

●  Kamin x 2: He ponders his newspaper's upcoming exit from its iconic Tribune Tower, and "the illusion of architectural permanence. The challenge for new owners is one of creative recycling: Change the use but maintain the character."

●  He reports on a 1958 Frank Lloyd Wright-designed building in Whitefish, Montana, that faces the wrecking ball "unless a preservation-minded buyer is found by Wednesday" (that's tomorrow! It's only $1.7 million; sadly, we didn't win the lottery).

●  Sweet reports on "a significant victory for neighborhood and park advocacy groups": Chicago's "controversial" Obama Center takes one of a few "festering issues off the table" - a contested garage will be built underground in Jackson Park (yay!).

●  A look at Gehry's redesigned hotel tower for Santa Monica's Ocean Avenue, lopped from 22 to 12 stories (looks a bit stumpy now?).

●  Waite reports that what would have been Ole Scheeren's first U.K. project, a new home for the British Film Institute on London's South Bank, has been scrapped.

●  Renzo Piano tapped to design a new mega-gallery in NYC for David Zwirner: "I have to remind him we don't need coat checks, we don't need ticket booths" (and Selldorf is still a friend).

●  Google, BIG, Clive Wilkinson Architects, and OLIN have million-square-foot plans for Sunnyvale, California, to house up to 4,500 employees.

●  Moore, with minor caveats, has high praise for Waugh Thistleton's Bushey Jewish Cemetery in north-west London: "It is elemental and familiar but also has a quality of otherness - a dignified, not-mundane, not-oppressive setting" + "Inspirations for modern cemeteries from around the world."

●  Bernstein talks to Galilee re: the recent Met Museum marathon, "In Our Time: A Year of Architecture in a Day" (even with only 10 minutes to present, the stars did shine).

●  Bierut & Helfand talk to PAU's Chakrabarti: "He sees architecture as a form of writing in the world. And in order to write you have to read. And so we take a lot of time reading the places in which we're designing."

●  Gasp! For the first time in almost 50 years, the AIA is not honoring a project with a Twenty-Five Year Award: "the jury did not find a submission that it felt achieved 25 years of exceptional aesthetic and cultural relevance" (must've been one tough jury - hard to believe there wasn't one building?!!?).

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