Today’s News - Wednesday, August 12, 2020

●  Betsky delves into "how a photograph from the protests in Detroit can serve as a guidebook for the profession": The Renaissance Center "is now an emblem of how increasingly useless buildings as objects have become. We need to design the commons, not the castle - if architects understand that they must work with and for the people who were pictured, then they will have a good sense of the task at hand."

●  Part 1 of Susannah Black's great Q&A with architect, urbanist, author, and educator John Massengale re: "urbanism after the pandemic": "We don't need to go back to normal - we can use this time to make places that are better than normal" (he takes on Robert Moses, Modernism, and more).

●  Overstreet dispels the doom-and-gloom sayers re: city folk decamping to the 'burbs: The data "predicts a different and more vibrant future for our cities. City dwellers aren't looking for homes in the suburbs, but other similar cities - a place not so different from where they were already living."

●  Law professor Jonathan Zasloff explains why Trump scrapping the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule isn't a bad thing: "I have spent my career advocating for fair housing. It's good to see Obama's rule go - it didn't include the policy tools necessary to achieve fair housing."

●  Biron talks to an impressive array of urban planners and designers re: how the policing debate is bringing about an "urban design rethink. City planning can tear communities apart or bring them together. Design and planning should be receiving more attention in conversations about community rebuilding" ("We took down all of our 'no' signs").

●  NYC-based architect Michael Caton explains why "architecture needs a culture shift" - and the two components design firms grappling "with the pervasiveness of institutional racism" must take into account: "The path to combat organizational biases runs through organizational cultures of candor and trust - held accountable by data."

●  Rachel Shabi explores how Britain's "city parks and green spaces have 'become living rooms' during the pandemic [people cleaning up litter!] - the worry is that they will become ever-more commercialized, rendering them less inclusive or accessible precisely at the time we value them most."

●  Kamin cheers Dirk Denison's "vibrant remake" of Mies's "workhorse tower Kacek Hall into a dorm at Chicago's IIT, reminding us that often "the workhorses are worth saving, too" ("even the so-called Mies police are unlikely to object to the result").

●  Hickman reports that Gensler is taking on EE&K's 2001 Hollywood & Highland complex in L.A., renamed Ovation Hollywood, as "part of a major $100 million design overhaul" to give it "a new, less retail-centric purpose" to appeal to both locals and tourists.

●  Buday offers an interesting(?) take on "why learning to tell tall tales might help the profession - disinformation works and works well - opportunities await" architects who get it (he's "not sanctioning moral abandonment or ethics code violations" - but a bit of "fiction for the betterment of humankind" is o.k.).

●  Hopkirk x 2: She reports that AHMM's Simon Allford won the RIBA presidential election - "but turnout was just 13%."

●  She talks to British architects who "lament 'lowest turnout in 30 years'" and the "calls for review as 'pitiful' 13.2% bother to vote for RIBA president." + RIBA's Alan Jones responds.

●  ASLA announces Torey Carter-Conneen, who has spent "a lifetime of committed advocacy for a more just society," as its new Chief Executive Officer (great pick!).

●  Exhibit Columbus announces its 2020-2021 curatorial theme, "New Middles: From Main Street to Megalopolis, What is the Future of The Middle City?" - and the 5 (very cool!) recipients of the Miller Prize who hail from Minneapolis, Miami and Madrid, Chicago, Brooklyn, and London.

●  Wachs reports on the 30 recipients of new National Organization of Minority Architects fellowships that support BIPOC architecture students who will now take on "paid internships at firms across the country, virtually" ("take note: Most are looking for full-time work when they graduate").

●  The German Design Council bestows the ICONIC AWARDS 2020 on Kengo Kuma and Associates as Architects of the Year, and Alberto Caiola Studio as Interior Designers of the Year + link to "a comprehensive summary of all winners."

●  Eyefuls of Dominique Perrault Architecture's winning entry in the Hangang District Urban Design International Master Competition, along with eyefuls of 2nd place winners and other invited entrants.


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