Today’s News - Wednesday, March 13, 2019

●  Misra parses a new UNESCO/World Bank report that shows "investing in cultural cohesion and preservation can help rebuild cities devastated by war or natural disasters," and includes "a roadmap for integrating culture into people-centric and place-centric policies."

●  Bower & Price introduce us to their AIR Network initiative that is using "community-centered approaches to tackle air pollution" in a Nairobi slum - "with the community deeply involved, we became a collective, learning. Using creativity is key."

●  Phineas Harper explains why "the arms race for cultural dominion has reached new levels of absurdity" and "hubristic energy": "How have our urban priorities become so warped that fire stations, court houses, hospitals, women's refuges, and community centers close down every week, while classical conductors can demand new orchestral venues (DS+R's London Centre for Music) - cash plowed into architectural vanity projects end up depleting the wider cultural life of their boroughs."

●  Davidson, on a brighter note, cheers the Museum of the International Baroque in Puebla, Mexico, for choosing Toyo Ito, who has designed "an effortlessly expressive vessel. This is a museum of excess - distilled into a quietly flamboyant design."

●  Busta brings us "an inside look at green design" in Singapore: "A major area of emphasis is the greening of its new and existing building stock. A walk through Singapore's downtown business district offers striking evidence of this initiative" (with many of her own fab photos).

●  Sitz parses Weiss/Manfredi's recently unveiled plan for the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi: The "scheme for a cohesive new campus uses forms, materials, and landscape to link existing historic structures" (including the restoration of Edward Durell Stone's 1958 Chancery Building) "to contemporary ones."

●  NYC is trying to figure out what to do with "a crumbling span" of the cantilevered (and infamous) Brooklyn-Queens Expressway: "Transform or tear down? No matter what method is used - one thing is certain: There are no painless solutions."

●  Studio Gang's flatiron-shaped hotel on Boston's Kenmore Square "is intelligent and ambitious," and "includes a $15 million investment in public space" that "could become a vibrant example of how the city can maximize the built environment to accommodate growing populations, transportation, and human health."

●  Block, meanwhile, talks to Jeanne Gang about change not "happening fast enough for women in architecture - more needs to be done to root out sexism in architecture, and pay equality is the obvious place to start - 'it's a math problem'" (some curious comments: "Wage fake news" - huh?!!?).

●  Toronto-based Bortolotto offers advice for women in architecture: "I have had my fair share of gender-based discrimination. Here are some tips for getting recognized- ensuring our voices are heard on every platform is the spark that starts the flame."

●  King reports on a (surprise to us!) merger: Pfau Long, "one of San Francisco's most influential smaller architecture firms," is merging with Perkins+Will - "a situation faced by other design firms" as they - and their founders - age.

●  Paletta introduces us to Aluminum City Terrace, "the only multi-tenant housing taken on by Gropius and Breuer in the U.S.," just outside of Pittsburgh that "manages to be equally unique and ordinary," and "remains highly popular to this day - whose abidingly low costs might prove an inspiration to housing reformers today."

●  Speaking of Gropius, Alioto's Q&A with the artist behind the 2017 film "Gropius Memory Palace" and "the still-operating Fagus shoe factory in Germany that revolutionized industrial architecture" (screening in April as part of "The Bauhaus and Harvard" show).

●  Clarke cheers "An Engineer Imagines": A fascinating study of Irish pioneer Peter Rice offers a faultless account of 'the James Joyce of structural engineering'" - while it might be "a little short of mathematical detail - it sends one out eager to learn more."

●  One we couldn't resist (and can't wait to see!): The Edge, atop KPF's 30 Hudson Yards in NYC, will be "tallest outdoor observation deck in Western Hemisphere and the fifth highest in the world" (glass floor included - gulp!).

●  ICYMI: ANN feature: Winner and Finalists Announced in the "rise in the city" Design Competition for Affordable Housing in Lesotho, Africa.


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