Today’s News - Tuesday, March 5, 2019

●  A sad way to start the day: tributes to Kevin Roche: Goldberger: His "inventive riffs on traditional architecture, with which he appeared to have something of a lover's quarrel, alternately embracing and spurning it, or twisting it to his own purposes."

●  Kamin pays his respects to Roche, who designed Chicago's Leo Burnett Building.

●  Bernstein: "Like his mentor Eero Saarinen, Roche could design buildings of startling originality. Some were lightning rods for criticism."

●  ANN reprise: Crosbie's lively/lovely 2017 Q&A with Roche re: "his early days with Eero Saarinen, re-thinking corporate architecture, and what he learned from some four-legged friends back in his native Ireland."

On much brighter notes:

●  Isozaki wins the 2019 Pritzker Prize: "It was in part his endless attempts to rebuild - to make something new from old forms, to experiment on the edge of what's possible - that earned him the honor."

●  The MacArthur Foundation is giving away another $100 million gift - and "spinning off a competition nonprofit, Lever for Change, to help other foundations give game-changing sums to promising solutions."

●  The AIA's "Guides for Equitable Practice," a "resource to architects and firms on equity, diversity and inclusion issues," is now publicly available online.

●  Kimmelman visits two public housing estates in London that offer lessons for other cities dealing with affordable housing issues: "It matters here that the council itself, not some private developer, is in charge - so far, that gamble is producing some of the most promising public housing I've seen in a while."

●  Arieff takes issue with builders who "want to sell us sprawling, unsustainable monstrosities" - the NAHB's annual trends report are "not necessarily the trends homeowners want (and certainly not what most people need). Our way of building homes and neighborhoods lost the plot a long time ago."

●  Moore parses the changes at "the world's most famous bell foundry" and environs that is "high on the list of case studies whereby places of industry become places of art become places of property development and hipsterdom."

●  Wainwright finds 6a's MK Gallery "utterly, thrillingly Milton Keynesian. Restored with relish, the unhappy 1990s gallery is now proudly of its place - an unapologetic hymn to the land of big boxes and concrete cows," and "a gloriously '70s vision that would have made the young Terence Conran proud."

●  A "vast" train shed in Tilburg, the Netherlands, is now a public library with "labs" for learning new skills, "young visitors can wander through giant storybooks," and much, much more (impressive design team led by Civic Architects!).

●  In Dubai, OMA and Inside Outside have designed "Ethar - Honoring Generosity," a "vast monument that consists of a field of 1,680 triangular-shaped recycled aluminum columns arrayed like a magnetic field, engraved with stories from Arabic scholars, scientists, and thinkers."

●  Adler considers whether architects can "make a difference in transforming our criminal justice system" + link to Klimoski's report re: Vera Institute for Justice and MASS Design Group working together "to envision what future prisons can look like."

●  Bettridge has a great (and often amusing) conversation with Diller and van Loon, "who had never met before": They "are colossally accomplished architects. They are also two delightful people to chat with" (and being in NYC made him feel "like being inside a gigantic cell phone").

●  Plan to spend some time with Guardian Cities' Concrete Week, which includes Wainwright: "After a generation in the doghouse, concrete is more fashionable than ever. So why don't we take better care of our brutalist architecture?"

Of plazas, parks, and playgrounds:

●  CMG's new plan for San Francisco's Civic Center "proposes 11 acres of multi-use, homeless-friendly green space," though "even with the worthy intentions - can accessibility to public space truly provoke change in a city rife with inequity?"

●  Researchers at Aarhus University in Denmark "found that growing up near vegetation is associated with an up to 55% lower risk of mental health disorders in adulthood. One large question remains: Why?"

●  Kirk parses UNICEF's new reports that "explore the ultimate design challenge: How to provide spaces to play and prosper for children living in urban poverty. One key: Local organizations and communities have the power to bring about positive change, often with very few resources."

●  The architect who "looked at an abandoned, littered parking lot under a highway" in Boston "and saw something beautiful - a useable community space that doubles as a natural filtration system for water that runs off the highway."

●  Osborne cheers Bentway Park in Toronto by Public Work: "The underbelly of the elevated Gardiner Expressway was a virtual dead zone" - now, "the 10-acre site links seven neighborhoods with pathways for pedestrians and cyclists."


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