In the mid-20th century, certain Latin American cities looked like the most modern on earth. Not only was their architecture imaginative, but so was the thinking behind it: ideas, amounting to faith, that design could positively shape civic life across lines of money and class; that art and architecture were inseparable; that while Europe and the United States were the cultural powers of the day, South America had a shot at tomorrow.
Then the momentum broke. — nytimes.com
"Star Wars" creator George Lucas on Monday will announce an architectural team for his controversial planned museum on Chicago's lakefront: an avant-garde Chinese designer whose credits include Toronto-area skyscrapers dubbed the "Marilyn Monroe Towers" and Chicago's Jeanne Gang, shaper of the undulating Aqua Tower here. — chicagotribune.com
IABR–2014–URBAN BY NATURE–, the sixth edition of the International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam (IABR), claims that we can only solve the world’s environmental problems if we solve the problems of the city.Looking through the lens of landscape architecture, IABR–2014– redefines...
A new pair of towers proposed for downtown San Francisco would include the city's second-tallest building - and perhaps its most startling public space, an open-air plaza set beneath the main tower's elevated first floor.
The project straddles the northwest corner of First and Mission streets, with a 605-foot tower on Mission and a broad 910-foot high-rise on First. By comparison, the Salesforce Tower under construction on the southeast corner will top off at 1,070 feet. — sfchronicle.com
China plans to extend by 2020 a railroad on the high trans-Himalayan plateau of Tibet to the borders of India, Bhutan and Nepal, according to a report in People’s Daily, the official mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party [...]
The planned lengthening was criticized by Tibet advocates who said it would bring too many ethnic Han migrants to Lhasa and other Tibetan areas. — NY Times
Medellín has gained much attention for its urban transformation — and the escalators, which won several international prizes for innovation, make up one of the most striking projects. [...]
But are the escalators making any real economic or social impact in the neighborhood? To find out, I spent three months in Medellín talking with people in Comuna 13 about what has and hasn’t changed here. — citiscope.org
The story of Boyle Heights reminds us that urban highway teardowns don't always end in victory. [...]
"What we don't know, however, is the story of the losers, the urban men and women who fought the freeway, unsuccessfully, on the conventional terms of political struggle, who weren't able to pack up and move on, and who channeled expressive cultural traditions to register their grievances against the presence of unwanted infrastructure." — citylab.com
New York City is moving forward with a proposal that calls for a new high-rise apartment complex to feature separate doors for wealthy tenants and those living in the building’s affordable housing unit.
While wealthy residents will be able to enter the building from its designated front entrance, affordable housing tenants will be required to go in through a back alley.
A mandatory affordable housing plan is not license to segregate lower-income tenants from those who are well-off. — RT
More than 3,000 homes are to be built at the eastern edge of Canary Wharf after Tower Hamlets council gave the green light for the project, the first extension to the financial district since the banking crisis struck in 2008. [...]
Its centrepiece, at 211m the tallest building, is a 57-storey cylindrical residential skyscraper facing the waters of South Dock, designed by Herzog & de Meuron [...] — theguardian.com
IABR–2014–URBAN BY NATURE–, the sixth edition of the International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam (IABR), recently wrapped up a packed roster of conferences, debates, lectures, excursions and other events spanning over several weeks.URBAN BY NATURE– focuses on the interdependence of...
Rather than laying out exactly what it wants to buy (say, bike lockers), Barcelona is laying out six problems it wants to fix (such as reducing bike theft). Responses could involve buying things, but they might also suggest new services, regulatory changes or any other means of accomplishing the goal. Anyone around the world with a creative idea, including startup companies or even individuals, has a shot at a contract and all the market legitimacy that comes with that. — citylab.com
[Helsinki] has announced plans to transform its existing public transport network into a comprehensive, point-to-point "mobility on demand" system by 2025 ... allowing people to purchase mobility in real time, straight from their smartphones. [...]
Subscribers would specify an origin and a destination, and ... the app would then function as both journey planner and universal payment platform, knitting everything from driverless cars and nimble little buses to shared bikes and ferries — theguardian.com
Where apps and mass transit collide, commuters struggle most with coordination. Now, with so many different forms of transit, both public and privately mediated, commuters (and cities) need navigation tools that compare all options for them. Making this as accessible as possible, as Helsinki is...
With all the time and energy cartographers spend preparing maps, it makes sense that they would want to protect their investment. One of the ways they do so — although they don’t always admit it — is by including “trap streets,” deliberate mistakes added to maps to catch unsuspecting copyright violators. These may include fake streets, as the name suggests, but the term is also applied to other erroneous cartographic data included to embarrass those who might steal it. — atlasobscura.com
[...] tech guru and multimillionaire Tim Draper has put forth a plan which will solve the ills of the state by – wait for it – splitting it into six smaller states! This “Six Californias” plan [...], as you might expect, divides the state into six smaller chunks, maintaining county lines. [...]
But there’s another reason to oppose the plan that few people are talking about: it would do damage to the state’s transportation systems, especially mass transit. — thisbigcity.net
Serious money is in play in the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ “Mayors’ Challenge” for cities competing to show they have come up with promising innovations to cope with 21st-century challenges.
“It was a big surprise to hear we’d share our ideas with competitors,” says Gomes. “But it works brilliantly. It’s exactly what you need—everyone sharing and trying to help each other. It’s crazy, but it works.” — urbanland.uli.org
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