London Mayor Sadiq Kahn scraps Garden Bridge
The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has finally pulled the plug on the controversial plan for a garden bridge across the Thames, announcing that he would not provide the vital financial guarantees needed for construction to begin.
In a letter to the Garden Bridge Trust, the charity leading the much-delayed project, Khan said he was taking the decision because of a continuing shortfall in fundraising for the scheme, and a lack of the necessary land use agreements despite three years of talks.
— The Guardian
New USC Dean Milton Curry shifts pedagogical focus toward theory
When you think about diversity and globalization and urbanization, you can’t do it without a theoretical underpinning. You just can’t. And I think that what we’re seeing in the discipline at large is the limit conditions of thinking a-theoretically about urbanism, about inequality, about what we should do about environmental challenges and sustainability. We’ve got to address it through a theoretical lens. - Milton Curry
— The Los Angeles Times
In this interview conducted by Christopher Hawthorne as part of his pithy Building Type column, the soon-to-be-Dean of USC's School of Architecture Milton Curry talks about reintroducing a theoretical emphasis to the school's programs. Curry, who in his time at University of Michigan experienced... View full entry
Rejecting modernist master planning notions, MAD's Milan master plan repurposes dilapidated rail yards by symbiosis
Repurposing and renovation have gained greater appeal in the years since the overwhelming success of The High Line, extending to a variety of applications and structures. At the recent Milan Design Week, MAD took this to a new level by showcasing their proposal for a new masterplan of Milan, which... View full entry
Will luxury apartment owners shut down the Tate's viewing platform?
Good walls make good neighbours – but not, it seems, when they are made entirely of glass. Five residents of the multi-million-pound Neo Bankside towers, which loom behind Tate Modern like a crystalline bar chart of inflated land values, have filed a legal claim against the museum to have part of its viewing platform shut down. They claim that its 10th-floor public terrace has put their homes into a state of “near constant surveillance”.
— The Guardian
In an apparent case of art interfering with life, the owners of the apartments next to the Tate Modern's viewing platform are trying to legally erect some kind of visual barrier between them and the visitors of the museum (although the exotic technology of curtains has apparently not yet made it... View full entry
First look at Domino Sugar Factory’s 11-acre park and waterfront esplanade
James Corner Field Operations will preserve 21 Raw Sugar Warehouse columns, nearly 600 feet of crane tracks, and 30 industrial artifacts, including 36-foot-tall syrup tanks that were used in the refining process, mooring bollards, and bucket elevators–not dissimilar from their efforts at the High Line.
Two Trees Management has revealed new details and renderings of the 11-acre park that will anchor their Williamsburg mega-development at the Domino Sugar Factory site. Domino Park, which will open in the summer of 2018, will have a new waterfront esplanade, six acres of parkland, and a wealth of... View full entry
David Adjaye named one of Time's "100 Most Influential People"
Every architect has to contend with gravity—but when David designed the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the challenges of that elemental force went far beyond the ordinary. How can a design acknowledge, and embody, the weight of this monumental history and yet transcend it right before your eyes?
It feels like this is going to be yet another great year for David Adjaye. The architect, who back in January became Sir David Adjaye after receiving the Knights Bachelor award from the Queen of England, is the only architect on this year's "100 Most Influential People" list (a distinction... View full entry
An exquisite drone tour over Apple's new campus reveals the pond, furniture, + a new theater
Like a miniature perfectionist city, the new Apple campus in Cupertino is made up of several different buildings: there's the familiar Norman Foster-designed "spaceship," as well as a massive parking garage that features gleaming solar panels atop the roof.This drone video reveals that very little... View full entry
Indian bar legally evades closure by adding 250-meter long maze entrance
Since April 1 a large number of the bars, pubs and liquor shops across India has gone out of business, thanks to a Supreme Court order that the outlets should be at least 500m away from state and national highways...The Aishwarya Bar in North Paravoor, a Kochi suburb has built a 250m-long maze-like walkway to the entrance, theoretically making it more than 500m away from the highway.
— India Times
In a move that has even delighted the bureaucrats who initially drafted the rule that no bar could be within 500 meters of a highway, an Indian bar has managed to stay in business by virtue of building a 250 meter long maze that, like the snaking lines at an amusement park, greatly expands the... View full entry
Remembering the Holocaust via Anish Kapoor and Zaha Hadid Architects' Memorial
In a week in which the White House Press Secretary stated that Hitler never gassed his own people, it's worth taking a moment to remember the Holocaust. In the U.K., the United Kingdom Holocaust Memorial Foundation and the British Government have enlisted some of the top design firms in the... View full entry
Swimming with Skyscrapers: Watch video from a glass-bottomed sky pool
What's more relaxing than a glass-bottomed sky pool 42 stories above Houston? Well, pretty much every other thing in the known universe, which makes the existence of this Jackson + Ryan Architects-designed pool not only an eye-catching publicity stunt for the residential tower's developer, but a... View full entry
Transborder wins competition for Holocaust-Center in Oslo
In tough competition with leading Norwegian offices (Snøhetta, Jensen & Skodvin, Jarmund Vigsnæs and Carl Viggo Hølmebakk) the young practice Transborder Studio wins the invited competition for an extension of the Center for Studies of Holocaust and Religious Minorities. The center is... View full entry
Border Wall submissions are in, including proposals with solar panels, tourist destinations, nuclear waste storage, art, and a shared "co-nation"
The government won't identify companies until contracts are awarded around June 1 — and even then, only the winners — but some bidders released plans on their own
— Yahoo News / AP
Although many political agendas have trickled into the realm of design, the border wall continues to be a hot topic for architects. Since the inception of this project, social media has highlighted the "We Won't Build Your Wall" campaign, which has been prevalent at a number of architectural... View full entry
Architect David Lake pens compelling letter to Congressman decrying proposed cuts to EPA's "Energy Star"
As we discussed at the Witte, the EPA’s “Energy Star,” indoor air quality, and materials safety programs directly support the design and construction industry each and every day.
The proposed EPA budget eliminates funding for these programs and will severely impact the ability of engineers and architects to meet client demands, fulfill our contractual obligations, and carry out the duties of our licensure to protect the public.
— Letter from David Lake via The Rivard Report
In response to a letter in which Texan Republican Congressman Lamar Smith told David Lake that he gets all of his news from a "biased liberal media," Lake not only kindly (and eloquently) rebutted this inaccuracy, but also encouraged the Congressman not to defund the EPA if he still wants to live... View full entry
New pyramid, older than Giza, discovered 20 miles south of Cairo
Archeaologists have discovered what appears to be the first attempt at a smooth-sided pyramid in Egypt. The pyramid is estimated to be 3,700 years old (about 200 years older than Giza), and although no elaborately-outfitted burial chambers have been found yet, the team is still excavating in an... View full entry
Trump family's NYC properties are embarrassing energy hogs
Wasteful, inefficient, and pointlessly expensive to operate: most of Donald Trump's namesake properties, as well as his son-in-law Jared Kushner's new "666" edifice, are oozing energy by virtue of their poor design and indifference toward conservation. A report by the IBTimes noted that:As of... View full entry