Today’s News - Wednesday, December 19, 2018

EDITOR'S NOTE: Today and tomorrow will be the last newsletters of the year, hence you'll notice they're a bit longer than usual (so much news - so little time and space!).

●  Wainwright picks his Top 10 architecture of 2018: "A building made of boulders, Battersea's blazing miracle, the rugged return of Mackintosh - and recognition at last for a Vegas visionary" (with links to his and Moore's reviews).

●  AN picks "the top architecture scandals and controversies of 2018. Take a look back at the wildest stories of the year, and relive some of the outrage as the New Year rolls in."

●  Huber parses "the myth of age in architectural practice" - saying "one's best work emerges only late in life now feels nefarious - it starves younger generations. What we need is other ways of coexisting that are mutually supportive. And some retirements would help too" ("fragile egos" included).

●  Hagberg Fisher (speaking of age) tries to find architects who will talk about succession: "I get a very gentle no thanks, 'given the sensitive nature of the subject'" - only Libeskind and Berke "agreed to speak on the record - both are starting to put succession plans in place."

●  Hong & Franklin lay out why "New York's proposal for Amazon HQ2 is much worse than we thought" with some astoundingly troubling promises, a Non-Disclosure Agreement, and a stipulation that the city would notify the company "of all public records requests to 'give Amazon prior written notice sufficient to allow Amazon to seek a protective order or other remedy'" (yikes!).

●  Apple, on the other hand, is going to build a $1 billion campus in Austin, Texas, and will forgo "the billions in subsidies that Amazon accepted, and will only take about $25 million from the state."

●  Kamin cheers Evanston City Council reversing itself, voting to save (rather than demolish) the Harley Clarke Mansion and Jens Jensen-designed landscape: "Historic preservation victories are rarely any sweeter - or more democratic, small 'd' - than this one. The 91-year-old mansion now has a future, albeit an uncertain one. The same goes for its gardens."

●  TCLF hails the saving of the Harley Clarke House and Garden, a city-owned landmark: "The city council's unanimous (9-0) decision came in the wake of an outpouring of public support for the historic property" (gorgeous photos!).

●  On a more ominous note, TCLF warns that a planned revamp of Milwaukee's Marcus Center for the Performing Arts threatens "a masterfully designed campus whose building by Harry Weese, and landscape by Dan Kiley, exist in harmonious equilibrium."

●  WORKac's Amale Andraos is tapped to design the BeMA: Beirut Museum of Art in Lebanon: "The project was approached in a sort of personal way" - she left Beirut at the age of 3 (lots of fab images of what looks like a stunning building!).

●  Diamond Schmitt and KWC transform Ottawa's 1912 Union Station into the interim Senate of Canada, restored and modernized into "a state-of-the art, accessible and green building. More than 90% of construction waste has been diverted from landfill" (great shots by Bozikovic - we took a hard-hat tour ages ago, and it already looked amazing!).

●  K. Jacobs walked to LaGuardia Airport with photographer Stanley Greenberg "simply to see if it could be done. Google Maps informed me it was impossible. I'm beginning to think that walking is an act of civil disobedience, a last hurrah for the autonomous pedestrian" (Fentress, Speck, and others weigh in).

●  Gamolina's Q&A with architecture critic Lange re: "building the foundation to develop her voice": "To be a critic, you do have to have this grounding in history and in knowledge of the city so that you feel like you can say that other people are wrong [laughs]."

●  Salingaros tackles complexity. "Human beings 'feed' on visual complexity. But some types of complexity are useless, or can be harmful for us. Building the wrong type of complexity results in dysfunctional buildings and urban regions that waste enormous energy resources to maintain."

●  Two we couldn't resist: Miranda introduces us to the anonymous artist who is "surreptitiously" installing wood benches at neglected bus stops on L.A.'s Eastside - "'grim' would be a generous description," and highlights L.A.'s "more byzantine corners of transit bureaucracy" (one of our fave stories of the year!).

●  Stinson brings us eyefuls of a new development in Moscow that includes Hokusai's famous wave print stretching across six buildings, and three other building facades sport colorful cityscapes of New York, Barcelona, and Monaco - "we have to give them points for creativity" (really wild).

●  ICYMI: Weinstein at his eloquent best with his pick of the 10 Best Architecture and Design Books of 2018, which he describes as "invaluable and impeccably designed"; "quirkily inclusive"; "charmingly loopy"; "enthralling"; "produced with panache" (and then some!).

Of sustainability, climate change, and eco-cities (and cars):

●  The AIA COTE Top Ten Toolkit offers "curated, concise, and effective strategies for achieving sustainable designs, and provides criteria for evaluating a project after it is built."

●  Meanwhile, the AIA "has called on members of the profession to sign an open letter" to Trump that "outlines the organization's 'outright opposition' to his policies on climate change."

●  Hubbard offers "five steps to becoming a more responsible architect in the age of climate change - we must first acknowledge the effect our work has on the environment, and then focus on what steps can we take to mitigate those impacts."

●  Lindeman looks at Norway's "new era of climate-conscious architecture," and "a consortium in Oslo made up of architects, engineers, environmentalists, and designers creating energy-positive buildings."

●  Jaguar is working with British architects "to imagine eco cities - many ideas are set in the far future, yet mostly feel ultimately achievable."

Winners all:

●  Harvard announces six 2019 Richard Rogers Fellows who hail from New York City; Ithaca, NY; Novara, Italy; Rochester, NY; and Berlin.

●  CTBUH announces the 2019 Award of Excellence winners (one looks like a 1 WTC mini-me).

●  Curbed takes a very different approach to this year's Groundbreakers award by asking "previous jurors and Groundbreakers winners to talk about mentorship and collaboration, in an effort to further dispel the myth of the virtuosic architect working alone."

●  A shortlist of 15 entries from 9 countries now vying for the Dezeen x MINI Living Future Urban Home competition.


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