These are strange days in San Francisco, where the clamor to build needed housing — especially at affordable levels — is matched only by the self-righteous vigor with which actual proposals for that housing tend to be opposed...But if we want a well-planned city with distinctive new buildings for all its citizens, projects like this show that good design and good policy can go hand in hand. — San Francisco Chronicle
Developer Tishman Speyer's nearly one-year-old proposal for a 400-foot-tall residential tower, which Jeanne Gang designed, at 160 Folsom St. is suddenly facing opposition from local groups. With former mayor Art Agnos at the forefront of the opposition, the groups argue that the building promotes...
In Orange, Texas, the Texas Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans just built a large Confederate memorial park, complete with a classical-ish monument featuring 13 columns—one for each of the states in the short-lived, and utterly defeated, Confederate States of America. [...]
And this being Confederate sympathizers, they did not hesitate to build the memorial where the highway meets Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. — citylab.com
As controversy carries on over the notorious Garden Bridge by Heatherwick Studio proposed for London's South Bank, some opposers of the project are expressing their discontent with good ol' British satire in the soon-to-be-launched "Folly for London" competition. If you have a cheeky sense of humor, you'll have fun in this one. — bustler.net
Previously on ArchinectUPDATE, June 15, 2015: Will Jennings, artist and initiator of the "Folly for London" competition, sent us this statement to further explain the cause until the design ideas contest officially opens for entries.Details of the competition will be announced in due course and we...
It was a matter of hours from when the resignations of five Cooper Union trustees rolled in until their names were erased from the college’s website.
And it was a day later that the President Jamshed Bharucha announced he too would resign, more than a year before his employment contract expires.
Yet the upheaval that led to the acrimonious departures has been years in the making. — Inside Higher Ed
Events are unfolding very quickly in Cooper Union's leadership right now: Just hours after five members of the 23-member Board of Trustees resigned yesterday, Jamshed Bharucha, the school's embattled President, publicly announced his resignation in an email to the Cooper Union community.Following...
Last night five members of the Cooper Union’s board of trustees resigned: real estate mogul Mark Epstein (the board’s former chairman), Vassar College president Catharine Bond Hill, architects Daniel Libeskind and Francois de Menil (the board’s vice chairman), and investment banker Monica Vachher. Three of the departing trustees — Epstein, Libeskind, and Vachher — have written public resignation letters [...]. — hyperallergic.com
Following are the three resignation letters by Epstein, Vachher, and Libeskind — all widely claimed as strong tuition supporters and loyal to hotly contested Cooper Union president Jamshed Bharucha — in full length as published on the Committee to Save Cooper Union from the Committee to Save...
Can the field’s top minds change the way we think about a doomed housing project in Naples or the most abhorred skyscraper in Paris? Allow them to try. — The New York Times
Zaha Hadid, Norman Foster, Annabelle Selldorf, and (everyone's favorite) Daniel Libeskind are among the architects who sum up their thoughts on some of the most controversial buildings around the world. What's your take on these projects?More:Zaha Hadid, Piers Gough, other leading cultural figures...
The Frick Collection has yielded.
Facing a groundswell of opposition to a proposed renovation that would have eliminated a gated garden to make way for a six-story addition, the museum — long admired for its intimate scale — has decided to abandon those plans and start over from scratch. [...]
With the proposed renovation, designed by Davis Brody Bond, the Frick, on East 70th Street in Manhattan, had sought to increase its exhibition space [...]. — nytimes.com
While the museum describes the 42,000-square-foot addition as something that would “further fulfill Henry Clay Frick’s long-standing vision to offer public access to its works of art," others, including a group of 51 prominent artists and architects — Jeff Koons, Cindy Sherman [...] among them — think it would undermine exactly what they love about the place.
Under the banner of Unite to Save the Frick, this group sent a letter to the city, copied to the museum, expressing their displeasure. — vulture.com
Here's the letter that Unite to Save the Frick sent to NYC leaders today:May 6, 2015Dear Mayor de Blasio and Chair Srinivasan:The residential scale of the Frick Collection exerts a special power over those who walk its halls. To have visitors experience the feeling of living with art was the...
An independent investigation into the construction of New York University’s Abu Dhabi campus has found that despite the school’s best intentions and efforts, about one third of the workforce at the site — roughly 10,000 workers — was not covered by the school’s labor guidelines, and thus faced unfair and exploitative practices [that were reported in previous allegations]. — Hyperallergic
To add to that, construction of the NYUAD main campus is nearly complete and the workers have already moved on to other jobs.Related:Abu Dhabi: Saadiyat Guggenheim StallsHigh Culture and Hard LaborA Memorial for the Workers Dying While Constructing the Qatar World Cup Stadium
New plans for the Frank Lloyd Wright house in Arcadia has neighbors riled up.
Owners of the 1952 house want to turn it into more than just a home, but those living in the wealthy neighborhood aren't too happy about it.
[...] said the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed house is "an example of what I consider to be an architecture embodiment of Arizona exceptionalism."
However, this landmark home now finds itself in the middle of controversy. — azfamily.com
Release a rendering of a very tall, very shiny glass tower looming over an idyllic mountain village and the Internet goes bananas. That's what happened earlier this week when Morphosis Architects of Los Angeles released its design renderings for a new luxury hotel in Vals, a low-key spa town in the Swiss Alps. The design, conceived by Morphosis founder Thom Mayne, would check in at a whopping 1,250 feet, making it the tallest building in the European Union. — LA Times
A new design studio building for the School of Architecture (SoA) is expected to be completed by spring 2017. While some say the addition is long overdue, other architecture students are concerned with the building’s look. [...]
Underwood says he was also disappointed in the absence of input from students and faculty in the design process. — themiamihurricane.com
Long accustomed to basing its reputation on the grandeur of its old buildings, the city now finds it almost impossible to agree on how to build new ones.
In recent months, traditionalists have blocked efforts to introduce contemporary architecture in the historic core [...]. Modernists are rolling their eyes at new buildings that copy traditional styles, arguing that they pervert a record of architectural progress long documented in mortar and stone. — nytimes.com
“They don’t want a foreigner to build in Tokyo for a national stadium. On the other hand, they all have work abroad. Whether it’s Sejima, Toyo Ito, or Maki or Isozaki or Kengo Kuma.”
Last month Isozaki, 83, wrote an open letter to the Japan Sports Council, the government body in charge of plans for the 2020 Games, in which he attacked the “distorted” process that has led to “a dull, slow form”. — theguardian.com
A hundred and some years ago, an aesthetic force called the City Beautiful movement professed the theory that grand public buildings, lovely civic palaces, could inspire Americans to become good citizens. [...]
Since the 1960s, though, it seems as if great civic architecture has become an embarrassment. Politicians who love to cut ribbons find it hard to justify paying for beautiful on top of functional. The result is a style I call Sunbelt Stalinism [...]. — latimes.com
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