UAE-based X-Architects has won a competition to design a new masterplan for Makkah, Saudi Arabia - the holiest city in the world for Muslims. [...]
“We proposed a complex network of pedestrian routes on different levels to enhance the movement during the “Nafrah” [...]
“The surrounding roads have either been bridged or tunneled so as to strengthen the pedestrian tissue. This will solve the current situation of the constant crash between people and vehicles.” — constructionweekonline.com
All images via X-Architects' website. Learn more about the proposal here.In case you were looking for royal floors and helipads, you may get lucky over here: World's largest hotel under construction in Mecca — and it's worse than you thought.
At the end of May, Metro will debut its FORWARD plan: a fully reconfigured bus network that emphasizes more frequency, better night and weekend service, direct lines through high-ridership corridors, and grid-style access to many parts of the city. The top five routes will now all get 15-minute peak service... Rather than lobby for more taxpayer funding or jack up fares, Metro looked for more efficient ways to use its existing resources. — CityLab
Understanding the nuances of city stories, and tracing those tensions, requires immersion and patience. Whether we are writing about police work, protests, squatting, free parties, banking or parkour, the best socially engaged journalism – like the best university research – is rooted in participation, spiked with empathy, and resists being reduced to spectacle fodder.
As any war correspondent will tell you, immersion can also be dangerous... — the Guardian
Bradley Garrett recounts his own infiltration into urbex (urban exploration) communities, and provides a list of the "five most influential 'gonzo' ethnographies." If you aren't familiar with Garrett's work, be sure to check it out. In particular, Explore Everything: Place-Hacking the City is a...
A new law recently passed in France mandates that all new buildings that are built in commercial zones in France must be partially covered in either plants or solar panels.
Green roofs, as they are called, have an isolating effect which helps to reduce the amount of energy needed to heat a building during the winter or cool it in the summer. They are capable of retaining rainwater and reducing problems with runoff, and also offer birds a place to call home in the urban jungle. — CS Globe
The effort to save Norms comes at a time when historic preservationists say postwar buildings — especially on a smaller scale — face an increased threat from development pressure. — L.A. Times
Anyone who has ever grabbed a post-Largo meal or 2 a.m. existential coffee at Los Angeles restaurant Norms will be delighted to hear that The Los Angeles City Council has deemed the Googie-style building a cultural and historic landmark. Although this demarcation doesn't guarantee that it will...
[Barclay's] plan, to fabricate a “master-planned community” for nearly 100,000 people on what is today a field of sand dunes, is called Santolina. If fully populated, the development would be about the size of New Mexico’s current second-largest city, Las Cruces, and bigger than Santa Fe [...]
Columbia University’s Earth Institute points to 2050 as a time when the drought will begin to worsen dramatically, right around when Santolina planners predict the development could approach full capacity — theguardian.com
It's insane. Each city in the North is too small to fight against that. We can only drag some of that investment northwards if we work together — BBC News - Magazine
In England efforts have begun to corral the North's population of 15 million into a collective force that could begin to rival that of London and the South East. A minister for the Northern Powerhouse has been appointed and the initial/low hanging fruit would include, devolution of some fiscal...
Still, when Mayor Bill de Blasio today unveiled his plan for New York’s troubled housing authority, NYCHA, dismantling these aging towers was not a piece of it. The plan calls for charging more for parking, redeploying staff to other agencies to save costs and leasing land within the housing complexes to private developers to save money. [...]
So why does New York City still have so many high-rise housing projects? — theatlantic.com
The slum, of course, is the hottest button in urbanism. Beneath the cliché that half the world’s population lives in cities — and that urban populations will double by 2050 — is the fact that only bottom-up informal settlements, or slums, can absorb several billion new residents in the timeframe. [...]
URBZ is notable in that it offers a third way at looking at Dharavi — as both a failure and a better path to success than stillborn smart cities or other attempts at top-down instant urbanism. — nextcity.org
Recently, the Indian cabinet green-lit a £10 billion scheme that will be divided equally between building 100 smart cities, and rejuvenating another 500 cities and towns over the next five years. Yet many experts and planners fear that such “insta-cities”, if they are made, will prove dystopic and inequitable. Some even hint that smart cities may turn into social apartheid cities, governed by powerful corporate entities that could override local laws and governments to “keep out” the poor. — The Guardian
Amanda Burden often said that, thanks to Bloomberg, "we are building and rezoning today once again like Moses on an unprecedented scale, but with Jane Jacobs in mind." That's oxymoronic. You can't do both. As for who's winning the future of New York, it's clearly the followers of Moses. The preservationists are the underdogs here. — nymag.com
When you have every neighborhood looking the same, you know the city is at a danger point. And why should anybody want to live here, why should anybody want to visit here? A metropolis like New York or London or Shanghai is built on a strong sense of individual neighborhoods, and we are destroying that. — GUERNICA
The sociologist Sharon Zukin on the role of the artist in gentrification, challenges to affordable housing, and the commodification of New York City’s loft lifestyle."I blame it all on New York magazine. In the late ’70s, early ’80s, New York, like other US cities, was just coming out of...
Here is a constant refrain: Why is so much new building junk? [...]
The truth is that architects don’t have that much power. Architects don’t design most buildings; they are designed by developers or contractors working from cookie-cutter plans. Perhaps an architect signs off. [...] In any number of ways—our building codes, our housing policies, our preservation statutes—we systemically encourage bad building. — artsblog.dallasnews.com
Related:Rachel Slade dares to ask: "Why is Boston so ugly?"The new 5 over 1 Seattle, where "everything looks the same"Blair Kamin not impressed by Chicago's latest housing developmentsJeff Sheppard calls downtown Denver's new housing developments "meaningless, uninspiring"
Seventy years after the end of the war, Berlin is finally filling the last gaps left by Allied bombs, which destroyed more than two-thirds of the buildings in the city center. Architects say the construction boom offers Berlin a chance to make up for decades of bad planning and mediocre architecture. “This is a new time in Berlin,” says Libeskind [...]. “It’s one of the great cities of the world, and we expect it to compete. We don’t expect it to be some backwater.” — bloomberg.com
Previously:OMA wins Axel Springer Berlin HQ competitionBerlin's Alexanderplatz high-rise developments continue to take shapeLondon’s architecture lacks Berlin’s sense of culture, says ChipperfieldBerlin After the Wall: A Microcosm of the World’s Chaotic Change
It's been over 50 years, but for many, the destruction of Charles Follen McKim's original Pennsylvania Station still stings (hey, even Mad Men mourned its passing). But now, there is a hopeful (if improbable) plan from Richard W. Cameron—principal designer at Atelier & Co—to bring back the civic jewel of a long-gone New York.
According to Traditional Building's's Clem Labine, Cameron's plan has three main goals [...]." — ny.curbed.com
SUBMIT NEWS: submit in 60 seconds!