SPF:a employs prefab construction to expand Rancho Cienega Sports Complex in Los Angeles

Aerial view of Rancho La Cienega project (SFP:a)

Aerial view of Rancho La Cienega project (SPF:a)

After winning a Los Angeles–sponsored competition last February to redevelop the Rancho Cienega Sports Complex (RCSC) in Baldwin Hills, SPF:a—along with landscape architect Hood Design Studio and engineer Buro Happold—is moving forward with design.

Continue reading after the jump.

Eavesdrop> Breaking the Bank: Price of Kengo Kuma’s Dundee V&A Museum soars sky high

(Courtesy Kengo Kuma)

(Courtesy Kengo Kuma)

Kengo Kuma’s Victoria & Albert Museum of Design in Dundee, Scotland, hasn’t even broken ground yet, but it has already racked up a pretty substantial bill. In fact, the museum project is expected to cost roughly $80 million, a whopping $35 million more than initially projected. Kuma won the commission back in 2012 and has supposedly already tweaked the design to cut down costs.

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On View> Moderno: Design for Living in Brazil, Mexico, and Venezuela, 1940-1978

Architecture, Design, East, On View
Thursday, January 29, 2015
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(Courtesy Americas Society)

(Courtesy Americas Society)

When Miguel Arroyo arrived in New York City in 1939 as the assistant of the Venezuelan painter Luis Alfredo López Méndez, he met the architect of the Venezuelan Pavilion at New York’s World’s Fair: a young Gordon Bunshaft at SOM. The two formed a lifelong friendship.

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Eavesdrop> California’s Olympic Letdown: Los Angeles & San Francisco lose out to Boston

Eavesdroplet, West
Thursday, January 29, 2015
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(Photo by Alik Griffin / Flickr; Montage by AN)

(Photo by Alik Griffin / Flickr; Montage by AN)

 

Alas, despite being hailed as the favorite to represent the United States in the race for the 2024 Olympics, Los Angeles has lost out to its much older competitor, Boston. LA had pitched what Mayor Eric Garcetti hailed as the “most affordable” proposal, using mostly existing facilities, including the LA Memorial Coliseum, the Staples Center, and even Frank Gehry‘s Disney Hall, Griffith Observatory, and the Queen Mary.

Maybe the USOC isn’t as into a bargain as we thought? Or maybe after giving LA two games they’re just not that into us anymore. San Francisco, by the way, lost out on its bid, which also banked on affordability. Damn, the Olympic Village could have been the only cheap place to live there outside of Oakland!

Is this enormous mile-long land-art project in the Nevada desert a national monument?

Satellite image of Michael Heizer's "City" (Google Maps)

Satellite image of Michael Heizer’s “City” (Google Maps)

According to a report in Las Vegas Weekly, the  Conservation Lands Foundation is pushing to make a project by land artist Michael Heizer, of “Levitated Mass” fame, a national monument. The newly threatened City installation is a still-incomplete collection of giant abstract structures stretching for more than a mile into the Nevada Desert.

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Damien Hirst paints with butterflies at Soho House Chicago

Art, Midwest, On View
Thursday, January 29, 2015
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Damien Hirst's piece for Soho House Chicago.

Damien Hirst’s piece for Soho House Chicago.

In August the London creative club Soho House set up shop in Chicago, carving out a chic space for itself amid the city’s hotel, dining and cocktail scenes by retrofitting an industrial building in the West Loop neighborhood. Read More

Calatrava on the state of NYC architecture & his own controversial World Trade projects

The World Trade Center site. (Courtesy Port Authority)

The World Trade Center site. (Courtesy Port Authority)

The Real Deal recently scored an interview with Santiago Calatrava, the so-called “symphonist of steel” behind the upcoming (and wildly over budget) World Trade Center Transit Hub, and the nearby Saint Nicholas Church. In the interview, Calatrava explained how New York City’s building code impacted the two projects’ designs, offers his thoughts on the World Trade Center master plan, and comments on the construction quality of the Transit Hub. Overall, the controversial architect lavishes praise on just about everyone—from Daniel Libeskind to Larry Silverstein to the Port Authority.

Plan for a parametric townhouse of undulating brick “flames” is rekindled in Tribeca

Model of 187 Franklin. (Courtesy SYSTEMarchitects)

Model of 187 Franklin. (Courtesy SYSTEMarchitects)

Getting the blessing of the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission can be a tricky thing. Typically, your best bet is to go contextual: stick with historic materials and keep the modern ornamentation to a minimum. That is clearly not the approach that SYSTEMarchitects‘ Jeremy Edmiston took for a parametrically designed Tribeca townhouse in search of facelift.

COntinue reading after the jump.

Frank Gehry Shuffle: University of St. Thomas to move Winton Guest House a second time

(University of St. Thomas)

Frank Gehry’s Winton House (University of St. Thomas)

An early Frank Gehry–designed house about an hour south of Minneapolis is on the move—again.

The Winton Guest House, which Gehry designed in the early 1980s for Penny and Mike Winton, sits on property in Owatonna, Minnesota recently sold by the building’s owner, the University of St. Thomas. They have until August 2016 to relocate the playful, postmodern cluster of forms.

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In first year of Vision Zero, NYPD steps up traffic enforcement

An NYPD officer telling a cab driver about New York City's new speed limit. (Courtesy NYC DOT)

An NYPD officer telling a cab driver about New York City’s new speed limit. (Courtesy NYC DOT)

Given the current state of relations between the NYPD and Mayor Bill de Blasio (spoiler: terrible, horrible, no good, very bad), the mayor has been quick to thank the police force for its strong support of Vision Zero—the mayor’s plan to entirely eliminate traffic fatalities in New York City. The effort is obviously an ambitious one, but a year after it went into effect, de Blasio is able to tout some big successes.

Continue reading after the jump.

Köhler Goes with the Flow in Hamburg

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Köhler Architekten designed and built a new row house in a protected area of Hamburg's Ottensen quarter. (Courtesy HI-MACS)

Köhler Architekten designed and built a new row house in a protected area of Hamburg’s Ottensen quarter. (Courtesy HI-MACS)

Composite facade brings new row house into harmony with its historic neighbors.

Florian Köhler, whose firm, Köhler Architekten, recently designed and built a new row house in Hamburg’s Ottensen quarter, observes a disheartening trend among his fellow architects. When designing for a site rich in historic context, they tend to shy away from all allusions to the past, opting instead for an antiseptic modernism. “Many architects only build cubic forms without reference to their environment, and cityscapes are becoming increasingly similar,” he said. “We deliberately wanted to go a different route.” Ice Loft, which is surrounded by protected properties dating to the mid-19th century, features a tripartite facade that translates familiar historic forms into smooth curves and planes. “Our unusual approach to the transformation of classical qualities into flowing forms seems to be a suitable alternative, at least at this point, in this urban district in Hamburg,” said Köhler.
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Hof’s Hut, another famed California mid-century diner, in trouble after back-to-back fires

Architecture, Preservation, West
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
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Hoff's Hutt in its prime (Marvin Rand)

Hoff’s Hutt in its prime (Marvin Rand)

While it appears that Los Angeles’ famed Norms restaurant is safe, at least for the moment, another local dining landmark is in trouble: Hof’s Hut, in Long Beach, which recently suffered “significant damage” due to multiple fires, according to the LA Times.

Continue reading after the jump.

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