It’s perched atop the depressing, low-ceilinged maze known as Penn Station, daily hive for 600,000 scuttling commuters.
The Garden’s presence is one major impediment to the 25-year-old dream of turning the decrepit and overcrowded Penn station into a smoothly operating city gateway. — bloomberg.com
It’s a relief on the block, representing the diversity vital to healthy streets — not a perfect building, not even its architects’ best work. But its unembarrassed, luxuriant materiality, its small scale and vulnerability, all qualities that the Modern now seems to reject, belong no less than the glass tower to the messy story of Modernism and city life. — nytimes.com
AFTER impassioned protests from prominent architects, preservationists and design critics, the Museum of Modern Art said on Thursday that it would reconsider its decision to demolish its next-door neighbor, the former home of the American Folk Art Museum, to make room for an expansion. — nytimes.com
In a board meeting on Thursday morning, the directors were told that a board committee had selected the design firm Diller Scofidio & Renfro to handle the expansion and to help determine whether to keep any of the existing structure.
MoMA’s plan can hardly be a surprise, because its entire history since 1937 is based on demolishing potential landmarks. — nytimes.com
Three of the most important modernist houses in the Northeast, including the 1964 house Robert Venturi designed for his mother, have been (or will soon be) put up for sale by their long-time owners, two of them without covenants that would ensure their preservation. — archrecord.construction.com
Barry Bergdoll, chief curator of MoMA's architecture and design department, told AN that the decision was an administrative, rather than a curatorial one. He called the decision “painful” for architects and others who appreciate Williams and Tsein’s work, and acknowledged that museums have a responsibility to the art in their care—including architecture. — archpaper.com
The Russian avant-garde architect Konstantin Melnikov’s seminal cylindrical house in Moscow, which has inspired architects around the world for nearly a century, is gravely threatened by construction of a large multipurpose complex abutting its tiny backyard, Russian and international preservationists say. — artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com
MoMA officials said the building’s design did not fit their plans because the opaque facade is not in keeping with the glass aesthetic of the rest of the museum. — NYT
Robin Pogrebin reported that MoMA expects to have the building demolished by the end of this year. h/t Donna Sink over at TC, who commented "It's tragic. We need to start a thread on it and call for a boycott of the new project by all architects. If MOMA moves ahead with this I will never step...
The four firms — Santiago Calatrava, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, SHoP Architects and SOM — will have until May 29 to propose new designs that will be unveiled to the public that day at the TimesCenter on West 41st Street. “We’re really trying to unlock people’s imaginations about the very real potential of a new arena and of a new Penn Station,” said Vin Cipolla, the society’s president, in an interview. — artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com
Two preservationist groups have dropped a lawsuit challenging the City of Chicago’s decision to deny landmark status to the old Prentice Women’s Hospital.
Northwestern University plans to demolish the building in Chicago’s Streeterville neighborhood to make way for a new biomedical research facility. The decision to drop the lawsuit clears the way for Northwestern to carry through on it plans. — chicagotribune.com
The long, rancorous debate over the fate of the Orange County Government Center ended abruptly Wednesday, as a group of Republican lawmakers sided with Democrats to pass a proposal to renovate the 43-year-old complex. — recordonline.com
"The changes to the plans...were not enough to assuage the doubts the Commission had the first time around (although most of the commissioners did agree that significant improvements had been made). The alternations to the plans included stretching the double hung windows vertically in order to give the building less of a squat look, raising the base by six feet...and moving the tower forward slightly." — Curbed NY
Luxury fashion will meet Roman architecture as Italian fashion house Fendi has pledged €2.1 million to restore five of Rome’s beloved fountains, including the iconic Trevi Fountain.
Fendi, founded in Rome in the 1920s, is now part of French luxury giant LVMH. The fashion house opted to invest in restoring one of Rome’s architectural treasures due to a self-described “deep bond with the Eternal City.” — DesignBuild Source
For nearly 40 years, the F.B.I. has had its headquarters in a massive example of Brutalist architecture on Pennsylvania Avenue. But the federal government hopes to swap the building and its prime location for a sprawling new home in the suburbs, and there seem to be plenty of developers eager to help make that happen. — nytimes.com
The General Services Administration, the federal government’s landlord, held an “industry day” this month to lay out its wish list for new F.B.I. headquarters, drawing more than 450 interested developers, architects, brokers and consultants.
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