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Today’s News - Wednesday, May 2, 2018

●  Donovan, author of "Designing the Compassionate City: Creating Places Where People Thrive," considers how design decisions "play an important role in framing the range of experiences that people enjoy, endure or miss out on - compassionate design emphasizes little design over big design."

●  Farrelly bemoans that much of Australia's heritage "is disappearing in front of our eyes. Yes, we're the tomorrow people, but we'll be better tomorrow people if we're also, deeply, hereditary folk - developers and especially our governments need to grasp this, immediately, while there's still something left to save."

●  O'Sullivan parses efforts in Venice to control the flood of tourists: "gates" requiring a local transit pass "is taking crowd management to the extreme - getting the wrong sort of international attention at a time when it is struggling to maintain its viability as a real city, rather than a floating museum."

●  Endreny parses his research into how much money trees save in megacities using i-Tree Tools software: "Trees' benefits come out to a median value of $967,000 per square kilometer of tree cover."

●  Menking explores what's going on at Eliasson and Behmann's new art and architecture office, Studio Other Spaces: "This is perhaps a vehicle to combine his dramatic public art with a pragmatic social program. This desire by designers and artists to also be architects has a long lineage - we may start to see more of these professional distinctions erode."

●  Wainwright minces no words re: OMA's mixed-use Blox project in Copenhagen: it's "a provocative attempt to condense the thrilling energy of a city into a single structure - but the result is a gloomy glass monolith," and "the least Danish venue imaginable for the Danish Architecture Centre" ("It is an intentional critique of Danish urbanism. The city has become too calm and beautified," sayeth van Loon).

●  On a brighter (flightier) note: Cornwall, U.K.'s "abandoned and bat-infested" 1779 Bodmin Jail to be transformed into a hotel and tourist attraction by Twelve Architects (bats will be re-housed in a "bat bungalow"; no word of what will become of reported ghosts).

●  There are variations of RAMSA's 15 Central Park West popping up all over Manhattan - all designed by RAMSA: "Developers hope each will have the specific appeal - and graciousness - that became 15 CPW's hallmark."

●  Betsky visits Casa Barragán in Mexico City: "I can think of no single architect working today who is capable of such architecture. Does that mean it cannot be done? I certainly hope not."

●  Moore talks to Farrell and McNamara (one "a rock person," the other "a bog person"): "all hail the new queens" of the Venice Biennale: Their appointment "as curators is striking - but no one who knows their work should be surprised"; they explain their Biennale theme "Freespace" - and he highlights three of Grafton's best.

●  Chayka profiles BIG's Bjarke Ingels, the "brand builder": "Equal parts charismatic, obnoxious, and obsequious - his signature blend of aggressive salesmanship and techno-utopianism is set to define the built environment that the rest of us will have to inhabit over the coming decades."

●  Klimoski's great Q&A with Eyal Weizman of Turner Prize nominee Forensic Architecture: "Work such as ours has a very important political meaning now, considering the populist-right movement that is rising. The idea of calling everything fake news is slowing down the potential for evidence-based work."

●  Denny talks to architects who, "armed with data, are seeing the workplace like never before" - but "finding the best ways to support workers remains a moving target" (and "not all are crunching numbers in search of an answer").

●  Engelen parses her systematic review "Is activity-based working impacting health, work performance and perceptions?" that finds "there is consensus that ABW is good for interaction, work performance and control, but unfavorable for concentration and privacy. The good, the bad, the undecided, and recommendations."

●  Consigli explains how the construction industry can resolve its ever-worsening labor shortage: "The industry must draw its next generation of workers, female and male, from the ranks of tech and STEM students. Here are some ways."

Winners all:

●  An impressive list of winners in the Architectural League's 2018 Architectural League Prize for Young Architects + Designers + dates for lectures & exhibition: "Objective" theme challenged entrants to consider: "How do we define or understand architecture in a post-truth world?" (great presentation).

●  Iowa Women in Architecture and the Rockville, Maryland-based ACE Mentor Program are the winners of the AIA 2018 Diversity Recognition Program.


  


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