Last week I attended the seventh World Urban Forum in Medellín, Colombia, where more than 20,000 city leaders, urbanists, and planners from more than 160 countries met to discuss the future of cities across the globe. [...]
Unfortunately, a number of important countries, the U.S. and Canada among them, remain worryingly undecided about joining this widespread call for a city-specific SDG from countries as diverse as Germany, Colombia, and Ghana. — theatlanticcities.com
In so-called hot cities [...] battles are raging over height limits and urban density, all on the basis of two premises: 1) that building all these towers will increase the supply of housing and therefore reduce its costs; 2) that increasing density is the green, sustainable thing to do and that towers are the best way to do it.
I am not sure that either is true. — theguardian.com
I’d asked Stokes whether the technology challenges of designing a building to last 100+ years are more difficult today than they were in, say, 1900 — or if it’s as difficult, just different. He said the challenges might be more difficult today, but regardless, maybe technology is changing the solution: we shouldn’t try to design buildings today to last 100 years, but design them so they’ll last for, say, 20 years and then be replaced. — radar.oreilly.com
New bike lanes certainly make life better for cyclists, but how do they affect drivers? This question is hotly debated, especially when a new bike lane replaces a lane used by vehicular traffic. It seems that unless a ton of people start commuting by bicycle, giving away a lane would cause increased car traffic. But is this really the case? — fivethirtyeight.com
Today we call those changes “inequality,” and inequality is, obviously, the point of the McMansion. The suburban ideal of the 1950s, according to “The Organization Man,” was supposed to be “classlessness,” but the opposite ideal is the brick-to-the-head message of the dominant suburban form of today. — salon.com
The axe is set to fall on the American Folk Art Museum -- after months of controversy and protest, MoMA initiated its expansion and began preparing the FAM for demolition this past Monday. As per prior concessions by MoMA, the museum's distinctive façade will be preserved, but it's unlikely to...
Superstorm Sandy brought the Rockaways into the forefront of New Yorkers’ consciousness for a period of time, [...] subsequently as a key reference point in debates about rebuilding versus retreating from the flood zone. [...]
The last of these sites is Arverne East, 81 acres of City-owned land that have remained vacant since the neighborhood was razed in 1969. Below, Jonathan Tarleton and Gabriel Silberblatt consider Arverne East’s uncertain future. — urbanomnibus.net
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Contrary to the simplified linear causality of the environmentalism of the past, which posited that natural geography shapes urban patterns, it is now thought that contemporary urbanization shapes the surface of the earth. Nikos Katsikis explains this tremendous current shift in the meaning of physical geography for cities in his contribution "On the Geographical Organization of World Urbanization".
(Bernd Upmeyer, Editor-in-Chief, April 2014) — http://www.monu-magazine.com
Contrary to the simplified linear causality of the environmentalism of the past, which posited that natural geography shapes urban patterns, it is now thought that contemporary urbanization shapes the surface of the earth. Nikos Katsikis explains this tremendous current shift in the meaning of...
Mainstream sources such as CNN and The New York Times have sung the city’s praises as a stunning success story. However, now that the conference is over, there are signs that there’s trouble in Medellín’s urban planning paradise. — thisbigcity.net
And hierarchies don’t disappear when you place everyone at a communal table or “superdesk”; they persist in more subtle modes of workplace interaction.
I suspect that people thrown into open plans might even miss their cubicles. And there are features of cubicles—such as the need to partition wide spaces—that I suspect will continue to be useful and never go away; these needs precede the invention of the cubicle itself. — theatlantic.com
Cities like Yingkou in China’s northeast rust belt were among the earliest cities in the country to be overbuilt. [...] Yingkou, along with other cities, sold vast tracts of lands to developers to build apartments for the workers who – they hoped – would populate the new factories, malls and industrial parks to come. [...]
But investments have been slow to materialize, and newcomers are scarce in Yingkou, a city of 2.4 million with a population that hasn’t grown much in the past few years. — blogs.wsj.com
Neo-Classicism as a style made its real debut in the 1760s after several stillbirths...By the late 1770s, neo-Classicism had evolved into the graceful iteration we see in the Salon, and with its references to the classical world acquired a new and somewhat unanticipated meaning in the bargain: — NYT
David Netto examined what the restoration of a storied French neo-Classical salon reveals about polite society and high design. Spearheaded by curator Martin Chapman with help from Andrew Skurman Architects, the Louis XVI period room has been reinstalled.For more information visit The Legion...
Inquirer architecture critic Inga Saffron on Monday won the Pulitzer Prize for criticism.
In its citation, the Pulitzer Committee cited Saffron "for her criticism of architecture that blends expertise, civic passion and sheer readability into arguments that consistently stimulate and surprise." — philly.com
The video reveals Hong Kongers’ anxieties over political and social issues, such as their increasingly crowded and materialist city and the growing numbers of mainlanders since the city's transfer from the United Kingdom to China in 1997. It sends the opposite message of a very common view among mainlanders, that without China's economic support, Hong Kong would have been dead long ago. — globalvoicesonline.org
"Hong Kong Will Be Destroyed After 33 Years" is a nearly seven-and-a-half minute video by local film studio G.V.A Creative. Set in present-day Hong Kong, the city has become the target of an approaching meteor expected to hit in 2047 -- the year when the Special Administrative Region of China...
Let's agree that towers can be beautiful. Let's also agree that London needs new homes and plenty of them. It may well be that many of the 200-plus tall buildings now proposed can play a useful role if, as you say, they are "sensitively managed, well designed and in the right place".
London is not Amsterdam nor Vienna, cities whose inherited profile is retained at all costs. But neither, as you once put it, should it be Dubai-on-Thames. — theguardian.com
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