In a region at once feared and exoticized, we have been witnessing for more than a generation the devastation of old centers and the rise of new ones. Today there is no better context in which to investigate the complexities of global practice in architecture than that of the rapidly changing Arab city. — Places Journal
How does the deeply traditional meet the hypermodern in the older centers of Beirut, Damascus, and Cairo, and in the emerging new cities of Dubai, Doha, and Abu Dhabi? In Amale Andraos’ new article on Places, and in the new book, The Arab City: Architecture and Representation, she explores the...
Boring architecture may take an emotional toll on the people forced to live in and around it.
A growing body of research in cognitive science illuminates the physical and mental toll bland cityscapes exact on residents. Generally, these researchers argue that humans are healthier when they live among variety — a cacophony of bars, bodegas, and independent shops — or work in well-designed, unique spaces, rather than unattractive, generic ones. — nymag.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:Putting entire cities on the psychiatrist's couchGetting Neural: Van Alen hosts "How Does the Brain Respond to the City?"The Quest to Measure the Brain's Response to Urban Design
This is the urban park of today. Unlike the neatly drawn public spaces of an earlier age, these parks are reclaimed from the discarded parcels of our cities: Stranded patches of woods, abandoned military bases and airports, storm-water systems, rail lines and bridges, places where scraps of land are pieced together like quilts or strung together like beads.
The experimentation is global. — National Geographic
Related stories in the Archinect news:A critical look at Downtown L.A.'s ambitious plans for two new public parksWhat if: Perkins Eastman's "Green Line" proposal turns Broadway into a 40-block park in the heart of ManhattanAs Garden Bridge procurement process is headed for review, London group...
Squares have defined urban living since the dawn of democracy, from which they are inseparable. [...]
I don’t think it’s coincidental that early in 2011 the Egyptian revolution centered around Tahrir Square, or that the Occupy Movement later that same year, partly inspired by the Arab Spring, expressed itself by taking over squares like Taksim in Istanbul, the Plaça de Catalunya in Barcelona, and Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan. — nybooks.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:The Art of Architecture Criticism: Archinect Sessions One-to-One #7 with Michael Kimmelman, architecture critic for the New York TimesMichael Kimmelman in praise of NYC's new garage-and-salt-shed complex: "Best examples of new public architecture in the...
In 1997 two architects set out to rethink Lagos, an African megacity that had been largely abandoned by the state. Amid the apparent chaos and crime, they discovered remarkable patterns of organisation. Two decades later, Rem Koolhaas and Kunlé Adeyemi discuss the past, present and future of the city – and reveal why their own project never saw the light of day — theguardian.com
"...it was the ultimate dysfunctional city – but actually, in terms of all the initiatives and ingenuity, it mobilised an incredibly beautiful, almost utopian landscape of independence and agency." - Rem KoolhaasRelated stories in the Archinect news:Koolhaas guides viewers through bustling Lagos...
Felipe Russo, photographer who lives and works in São Paulo, Brazil dedicated a photoseries titled Centro, to this vibrant and complex city.
Felipe Russo focuses on nearly invisible objects spotted in urban space. He analyses coincidentally captured oddments to decode zeitgeist of a modern city. A plastic bag, brick, cardboard box or zoomed-in cobblestone hidden between business centers, skyscrapers and modern buildings became subjects of surreal compositions. — thisispaper.com
Photos from the series Centro by Felipe Russo.Related stories on Archinect:Articulating Space: The Architecture of the São Paulo BiennialThe Ruins of CongonhasRelocation or Adaptation: São Paulo Nears Collapse as Drought Continues
China has detailed its urban planning vision, which has been designed to make its sprawling cities more inclusive, safer and better places to live.
[...] policymakers pledged to transform urban development patterns and improve city management.
The last time China held such a high-level meeting was in 1978, when only 18 percent of the population lived in cities. By the end of 2011, in excess of 50 percent of the population called the city their home. — chinadaily.com.cn
Related news on Archinect:China considering drastic ban on coalDisastrous landslide burying dozens in Shenzhen likely caused by piled up soil from construction workBeijing's latest "airpocalypse" is bad enough for city to issue first ever red alertChina’s "most influential architect" is not...
Earlier this week, the online street art community was abuzz about an article by Rafael Schacter for The Conversation, From dissident to decorative: why street art sold out and gentrified our cities. [...]
Basically, Schacter argues that street art isn’t rebellious anymore. Rather, that it’s most notable form is as a tool used by corporations to spur gentrification. Agree or disagree, the article is a must-read. — Vandalog
Vandalog author RJ Rushmore reached out to some of the influential figures in street art and muralism to get their reactions to Schacter's claim that street art has sold out and become complicit in the corporate gentrification of our cities. He received responses from Buff Monster, Living Walls...
Cairo is an unruly urban sprawl that has spun out of control. Now, officials want to build a new capital in the desert -- a potent symbol of President Sisi's regime. But will it ever happen? [...]
The old Cairo is an ugly city, an affront to the senses. [...] a city of contradictions, created from the bottom up, even though that had never been the intention. It has been growing wildly since the 1960s -- from 3.5 million back then to 18 million now -- against the will of the country's rulers. — spiegel.de
Cities can’t win. When they do well, people resent them as citadels of inequality; when they do badly, they are cesspools of hopelessness. In the seventies and eighties, the seemingly permanent urban crisis became the verdict that American civilization had passed on itself. Forty years later, cities mostly thrive, crime has been in vertiginous decline, the young cluster together in old neighborhoods [...] —and so big cities turn into hateful centers of self-absorbed privilege. — newyorker.com
In any event, it's as you were for the "haves" at the top of list, with Melbourne taking the top spot for a fifth year running, with Vienna, Vancouver, Toronto and Adelaide/Calgary (tied at 5) completing the top five most livable cities in 2015.
[...] these cities have "relatively few challenges to living standards," and enjoy a good infrastructure, healthcare system and a low murder rate.
Unsurprisingly, Damascus remains the least livable city, with Syria embroiled in a bloody civil war. — cnn.com
Other articles related to liveability on Archinect:Think you live in a nice county? Find out where it stands on the nationwide Natural Amenities Index.Planning for Local and Liveable Neighbourhoods in MelbourneIs Jan Gehl winning his battle to make our cities liveable?Melbourne named world’s...
Using his authority under the Antiquities Act, the president created a protected area spanning roughly 704,000 acres in central Nevada’s Basin and Range, as well as smaller ones in California’s Berryessa Snow Mountain and Texas’ Waco Mammoth. [...]
Broadly supported by environmentalists, [Basin and Range] is also home to a major earthen sculpture, “City” which the artist Michael Heizer has worked to create over nearly half a century. — washingtonpost.com
All in all, these new monuments cover more land than the state of Rhode Island, adding significant mileage to Obama's public lands legacy. The Basin and Range (Nevada), Berryessa Snow Mountain (California) and Waco Mammoth (Texas) monuments cover lands that are either completely or mostly...
A new typology of XL-architecture is emerging in Istanbul, negating the urban context. These ‘Citadels-on-Steroids’ rapidly encroach on the city’s urban fabric. [...]
This might very well be the future of all cities. As city walls and state boundaries erode under late capitalism, the walls are only rebuilt at a smaller scale to maintain immunity from the chaos outside. — failedarchitecture.com
New York and London remain the world’s most global cities, as they are the only cities to rank in the top 10 of both the Global Cities Index and the Global Cities Outlook according to the A.T. Kearney Global Cities 2015 [...]. San Francisco leads the Global Cities Outlook due to its strength in innovation. Other cities ranking at the top of the Global Cities Outlook include London (#2), Boston (#3), New York (#4), and Zurich (#5). — atkearney.com
For lovers of city rankings:Melbourne named world’s most liveable city for fourth consecutive yearForbes Releases Baffling "Coolest Cities" ListFor skeptics: The Top 6 Reasons to Be Wary of City Rankings, Ranked
But supplementing that aesthetic of “the future” sketched in imaginary edifice, the full SF vision of the future city is a mosaic, constructed from fragments of the cities that we recognize, including symbols that are decidedly from the past. [...]
If SF functions by taking the world we know and altering it with a constructed future fantasy, the Statue of Liberty serves as the junction point, the axis where the speculative fantasy begins and ends. — motherboard.vice.com
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