I would like to argue that a more potent threat to the ongoing political viability of historic preservation is the perception that the preservation industry has become a conservative, indeed revanchist force; that it is elitist and sometimes even racist in its abetment of gentrification.
How did this happen?
Historic preservation in New York, according to the favored creation myth, was born in the postwar era as a progressive grassroots movement... — Places Journal
It’s 2040, and Los Angeles has just begun to recover from a devastating epidemic that wiped out much of its population. Former residents slowly trickle back, alongside new immigrants drawn to the city’s surplus housing stock. But at a lab in Westwood, epidemiologists fear the disease is...
On 22 October, [United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing Leilani] Farha challenged the General Assembly to promote urban development through the lens of human rights.
“Human rights can be transformational,” she said. “A human rights framework can provide the coherence and consistency sorely needed to achieve sustainable, inclusive cities for all.” [...]
“Human rights have been largely absent from discussions of urban development,” Farha cautioned. — citiscope.org
A "special rapporteur" is "an independent expert appointed by the Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a country situation or a specific human rights theme." In a recent report to the U.N.'s Human Rights Council, which you can read in its entirety here, rapporteur Leilani Farha...
The Gulf in the Middle East, the heartland of the global oil industry, will suffer heatwaves beyond the limit of human survival if climate change is unchecked, according to a new scientific study.
The extreme heatwaves will affect Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Doha and coastal cities in Iran as well as posing a deadly threat to millions of Hajj pilgrims in Saudi Arabia, when the religious festival falls in the summer. — The Guardian
"The study shows the extreme heatwaves, more intense than anything ever experienced on Earth, would kick in after 2070 and that the hottest days of today would by then be a near-daily occurrence."Related:Luxury Anthropocene: Dubai gets its first private floating islandsIt's only August but humans...
The plateauing and decline in U.S. vehicle miles traveled per capita that occurred between [2005-2014] was described by some hopeful commentators as a dramatic shift that was indicative of the preferences of a new workforce...Marginal changes in the way a new generation behaves...cannot overcome the realities of a country where more than three-fourths of jobs are located more than three miles from downtowns and where only one-fourth of homes are in places that their residents refer to as urban. — The Transport Public
More about car transit on Archinect:Welcome to Evanston, Illinois: the carless suburbiaDawn of the self-driving car: testing out Tesla's autopilot functionFrom California to Texas, car culture is losing its monopolyCan a loss of driver autonomy save lives?Designers imagine a world of self-driving...
What if a suburban downtown became a place where pedestrians ruled and cars were actively discouraged? As it turns out, what looks like normal urban gentrification actually marks the success of one of the most revolutionary suburbs in America. And its approach to development is fast becoming a model across the region—a model even embraced by [Evanston's] urban neighbor to the south, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. — politico.com
good architecture can survive budgetary rigors — at Hunters Point South, for instance, where a pair of hulking towers designed by SHoP and Ismael Levya Architects expresses de Blasio’s urgency even though it’s a holdover from the era of the allegedly Nero-like Michael Bloomberg. [...]
SHoP’s new towers are not world-beating architecture, but they’re more than good enough to plug into an evolving network of ferries, parks, schools, shops, all of which foster more investment. — nymag.com
More on affordable housing in New York:New York's "poor doors" are no moreNYC's public-housing woesThe Chinese government is building affordable housing in BrooklynArchitecture vs. Housing: The Case of Sugar Hill
The British Council announced today the winning proposal for the British Pavilion at the 15th Venice Biennial of Architecture: Home Economics, a project authored by the architecture writers Shumi Bose and Jack Self alongside the architect and planner Finn Williams.According to the curatorial...
CicLAvia [is] a series of one-day events organized by a local nonprofit in which neighborhood streets are closed to motor vehicles so that people can walk and cycle freely...
Now, a study by the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health has found that the event significantly reduces air pollution along the CicLAvia route and even on other streets in the communities where the event is held. — UCLA
[Cards Against Urbanity] works like this: One person plays a card that poses a question or fill-in-the-blank, like “The Mayor got in trouble for crowdsourcing ________”. Each other player plays a card that they think represents the “best” answer, like “The poor door,” “NIMBYs,” or “A stress ball shaped like Richard Florida.”
The first player chooses their favorite answer, many laughs are had, and at some point, if at least one player is sober enough to keep score, one is crowned the winner. — nextcity.org
Using cruise control, you can set the [Tesla] to a particular speed and it will accelerate and turn within a lane in a straight line. It will dodge cars attempting to swerve into your lane, objects that it can see, pedestrians or fellow drivers simply trying to swerve into you because you’re an obnoxious prick with a Tesla blasting Party Rock Anthem.
It can’t, however, direct you along every street... — The Guardian
Sustainable, fast, and cheap housing: just what you need when you're escaping oppressive regimes, natural disasters, and other refugee-creating events. Christoph Chorherr, Vienna's Green Party planning spokesperson, has blogged that the mobile Passive House dormitories designed by Günter Lang...
The $1.1 billion Essex Crossing project will be a 1.65 million-square-foot, mixed-use mega-development anchored by 1,000 residential units and a mix of cultural, community, and retail facilities. Though the city will lose the 75-year-old Essex Street Market, the new market will be transformed into one of the five biggest markets in the country. — 6sqft.com
Chicago is the alley capital of the country, with more than 1,900 miles of them within its borders. [...]
Instead of eliminating them, Chicago is reimagining its alleys. In 2006, Chicago became one of the first cities in the country to conduct a “green alley” program, resurfacing alleys to prevent runoff and decrease solar heat absorption. In the last several years, the Chicago Loop Association has been experimenting with alleys as social spaces, using them to host pop-up art events. — wbez.org
In order to avoid participation in architecture and urban design becoming merely a politically required token of democratic involvement - a kind of fake participation that does not actually engage the participants in any meaningful way - architects, planners, and designers need to commit themselves and relinquish control, as Jeremy Till claims in an interview with us entitled "Distributing Power".
(Bernd Upmeyer, Editor-in-Chief, October 2015) — http://www.monu-magazine.com/news.htm
In order to avoid participation in architecture and urban design becoming merely a politically required token of democratic involvement - a kind of fake participation that does not actually engage the participants in any meaningful way - architects, planners, and designers need to commit...
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