I’m extremely concerned that if you leave Gaza in the state it’s currently in, you’ll have another eruption, and violence, and then we’re back in a further catastrophe, so we’ve got to stop that,-Tony Blair — +972
Even a hawk like Tony is worried."The scope of destruction in Gaza remains enormous. According to the UN, over 96,000 homes were either damaged or destroyed by Israeli air strikes. The donor states that have pledged to transfer money have yet to do so, re-building is going nowhere, many are...
The UNESCO Office in Afghanistan announced today the grand prize winner and four runner-up teams in the Bamiyan Cultural Centre Design Competition. Launched last November, the single-stage competition invited architects worldwide to propose designs for a cultural center in the Bamiyan Valley of...
The Vatican said Friday it had finished renovations on public restrooms just off St. Peter's Square that will include three showers and a free barber shop for the city's neediest. Each "homeless pilgrim," as the Vatican called the clients, will receive a kit including a towel, change of underwear, soap, deodorant, toothpaste, razor and shaving cream. The showers will be open every day but Wednesday, when the piazza is full for the pope's general audience. Haircuts will be available Mondays. — Star Tribune
The sleek, clean facilities – with grey walls, white washbasins and a "hi-tech looking" barber's chair – opened two days ago. According to Pope Francis' chief alms-giver, Monsignor Konrad Krajewski, the initiative is intended to help the homeless secure jobs and residences, something that is...
To stay in Chelsea and retain his lease, Mr. Kaplan [of Casey Kaplan Gallery] said, would have required paying twice the rent and taking on a much higher share of his building’s escalating tax rate. Instead, he elected to move to a new space in the Flower District, on 27th Street between Sixth and Seventh avenues. It will have double the square footage, he said, for half the cost [...] The Flower District doesn’t draw the same kinds of numbers but is already on the art-world radar. — wsj.com
New Orleans is a city perfectly designed to warp time. [...]
In New Orleans, the city itself has responded to an unusual ecology, geography and relationship with randomness. What’s come out on the other side is something more akin to cobbling than calculation. And it has the effect of accordioning the way a given minute feels here. — Re:form
Increasingly, in the US at least, central cities are all becoming more or less the same...Meanwhile, the suburbs are becoming more diverse. Not just in terms of ethnicity as growing numbers of blacks, Asians, and Hispanics pour into the suburbs from central cities and abroad. But also in terms of winners and losers — csen
Last year following visits to Chattanooga, Knoxville, Lexington, Cincinnati, Columbus, csen proposed four basic city/neighborhood archetypes for thinking about a non-dystopic 2030. He also wrote about Central City Homogenization and Suburban Diversification and argued for why The Sun Belt...
Mueller is the product of the "new-urbanism" concept: the idea that a built environment can create meaningful community. Planners minimize the supremacy of the automobile and shape the environment around pedestrians. [...]
One of the criticisms of new urbanism is that its communities look too much like a movie set — too quaint, too utopic. Yet Mueller feels real, with its ample greenways, eclectic yard art and Craftsman-style homes built with lots of native limestone. — npr.org
It’s easy enough to blame economic forces for the postwar destruction of slave markets, but not for the persistent concealment of their history. One hundred and fifty years after the Civil War, the South has no shortage of memorials to the Lost Cause, while memorials to the slave trade remain few and far between. [...]
After the Civil War, Johnson says, “the price of moving forward for the white United States was the forgetting of slavery.” — citylab.com
Julia Ingalls argued for The Genius of David Byrne who she likens to "the deadpan docent of the infrastructural realm". vado retro dropped by and chimed in "most of these lyrics were written before i ever attended architecture school and that was a very long time ago. i read a similar essay...
Sen. Carol Liu on Wednesday announced a bill, SB 192, that will require bicycle riders to wear helmets or face a $25 fine.
“Any responsible bicycle rider should wear a helmet,” Liu said ... “This law will help protect more people and make sure all riders benefit from the head protection that a helmet provides.” — sacbee.com
California law currently requires anyone under 18 to wear a helmet when riding a bike, nonmotorized scooter, skateboard, or wearing in-line or roller skates. Liu's SB 192 bill would extend this provision to everyone, not just minors, and also require cyclists to wear reflective clothing at night...
Princeton University’s campus is, in Rick Joy’s words, “a beautiful sculpture garden of famous architects’ buildings.” Now Joy, the Tucson-based architect, has added his own sculpture to that garden, in the form of a train station made of blackened stainless steel and precast concrete. — Architectural Record
The neoclassical monument designed by Henry Bacon has become an iconic piece of architecture, but had one of the designs from the other competing architect been selected, the familiar Lincoln Memorial would have looked jarringly different—perhaps in the form of a ziggurat, Mayan temple or Egyptian pyramid. — history.com
Towns and cities across France will soon be able to boost their culture offerings by hosting pop-up branches of the Centre Pompidou. The Paris museum is expanding its empire, and aims to establish domestic temporary outposts. “We will soon launch an open call for candidates [to select a French city],” says a spokesman for the Centre Pompidou. These pop-ups will remain open for four years. — theartnewspaper.com
Russia’s northern cities are a triumph of will; grand settlements in the middle of snow and darkness where people are dwarfed by the outsized factories they’ve built and helpless next to the industrial waste those factories create. Photographer Alexander Gronsky’s images of Norilsk seem both close to reality and something out of a dream. [...] But at the same time it is a place of heart-wrenching almost Arcadian beauty. A place of pale skies and metallic rivers. — calvertjournal.com
For 70 years, Mr. Wu has ridden out the country’s political storms, including one that killed his mentor, to establish himself as the most influential architect, urban planner and éminence grise of China’s cities. But looking out the window of his apartment in this city’s northern suburbs, he can only shake his head at the dim building emerging from the haze.
“Our environment is unfit for daily life, and the responsibility is very heavy on our shoulders,” he said. — nytimes.com
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