Earlier today, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter cut the ribbon on Dilworth Parkâ€”aÂ new 120,000-square-foot public space next to City Hall. OLINÂ led the $55 million renovation of the site which now includes an expansive lawn, a cafÃ©, new trees and seating, and a nearly 12,000-square-foot fountain that converts into an ice skating rink in the winter.
Chicago’s collective IQ, no doubt already impressive, may rise a few points even higher thisÂ Thursday and Friday. The city is hosting a gathering of international thinkers and innovators who specialize in the tools that enable the creation of some of the world’s most high-tech and visually arresting buildingÂ skins. The conference,Â Collaboration: The Art and Science of Building Facades, is sponsored by The Architect’s Newspaper and Enclos.
On Thursday, the conference features a high-powered line-up of speakers on Thursday, including Fernando Romero of FREE as the keynote. Then on Friday, the conference turns practical with a series of hands-on workshops that will lead participants through the very latest tools, programs, and applications. For example, Florin Isvoranu of Austria-based firmÂ Evolute, which has collaborating with Zaha Hadid, Asymptote and others,Â will host a workshop on parametrically driven optimization of freeform facades, a topic that even has industry experts signing upÂ to learn something new.
From students to seasoned veterans, those currently attending include staffers from firms likeÂ Sapa, Thornton Tomasetti, Interface,Â Cannon Design,Â Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architcture,Â Perkins + Will,Â NBBJ,Â SOM, and KieranTimberlake, with roles ranging from engineer to BIM manager, market analyst to company president. PhD candidates, MArchs, and undergrads are flocking in from area universities and colleges includingÂ The School of the Art Institute,Â IIT, and Cranbrook Academy, as well as a hefty contingent of 12 students and three profs from the University ofÂ South Dakota State University‘s new Department of Architecture (DoArch).
Collaboration is the industry conference you can’t afford to miss. There’s still time to sign up! Registration details here.
Completed in 2001, the ViÃ±oly-designed Kimmel Center in Philadelphia seems too old for growing pains, but today it’s certainly going through something of an awkward phase. In late April, KieranTimberlake released plans to revamp the performing arts center and now some of the details are emerging. Â BLT Architects have shared a few rendering from their renovation of the rooftop garden into an event space.
London Calling. The State Department is pushing for design excellence standards and is using its new embassy in London as a prototype.Â TheÂ embassy, designed by Philly-based KieranTimberlake, is still in its early phases, but as the project evolves, so will the standards for future buildings commissioned by the Bureau of Overseas Buildings, reports Engineering News-Record. While haute design remains part of the goal, sustainability and efficiency will take the fore. (Via Arch Record.)
New York Answering. The call from London that many answered Friday morning came from Westminster Abbey. Of the more auspicious outcomes, theÂ so-called “Little Britain” section in the Village got it’s nickname sanctified by The Times. Off the beaten path, under a bridge really, Brownstoner reports that an early morning crowd beneath the Manhattan Bridge gathered for a live video feed.
U2 in Malibu. Well not the whole group, just The Edge. He got approval from the Santa Monica Mountain Conservancy to build five eco-friendly homes in the Hollywood Hills. The dirty little tid-bit revealed in the LA Times is that the conservancy group accepted about $1 million in payments and services provided by a consultant hired by Mr. Edge. (via Curbed LA)
Jane and Andy. Two names you might never consider putting together are Jane Jacons and Andy Warhol. But an essay by Timothy Mennel pairs to the “two libertarians” together in this week’s Design Observer. Besides both coming from Pennsylvania steel towns, Mennel shows how their respective notions of community shaped the city as we know it today: eyes on your street vs. eyes on your navel.
“Everybody’s doing it.”
That’s how Erica Stoller of Esto described the august architectural photo agency’s foray into web video. Now don’t fret. At the heart of these videos remains Esto’s unparalleled still camerawork, but given these changing times, experimentation is in order. And, as Stoller’s colleague Joel Sanders explained, the philosophy remains the same. Read More