The Open Streets movement is a wildly popular tool in the Tactical Urbanist‘s arsenal. The concept is simple: shut down city streets to automobile traffic for a day so pedestrians and cyclists can fully utilize our most plentiful public spaces. Cities from New York to Los Angeles now celebrate their open spaces with programs that are about to kick off for the summer season. Here’s a roundup of some of the top programs around the country.
Love design? Love Los Angeles? Then put on your walking/biking/gallery-prowling shoes and get ready for the 2014 Los Angeles Design Festival. The festival, which opened last Friday, is a two-week tribute to the best of LA architecture and design. Its program is packed with tours, mixers, exhibitions, and other special events. Read More
Weâ€™ve known for some time now that ex MOCA director Richard Koshalek has returned to Los Angeles from D.C., where he recently stepped down as director of the Hirshhorn Museum. Now we know one of his exploits: We hear that he is consulting Frank Gehry on the organization of his vast archives. Maybe this means there will someday be a Gehry museum? Certainly the architect is not getting any younger, so we may hear more soon.
In a recent interview, Diller Scofidio + Renfro Senior Associate Kevin Rice told AN that the “veil” at Los Angeles’ Broad Museumâ€”a facade made of hundreds of molded Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete (GFRC) panels, hadÂ been delayed by over a year. “Some of the things took longer to make than they thought, but there arenâ€™t really problems with it,” RiceÂ said.
But now it looks like the issues with the museum’s facade are more severe than initially thought.
As the United States’ prototypical car-oriented freeway town, Los Angeles continues to edge its way toward becoming aÂ pedestrian-friendly metropolis. The city’sÂ Great Streets Initiative, a program intended to redesign public space to be more pedestrian- and cyclist-friend, officially moved forward this weekÂ as Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the first 15 streets that will be targeted for improvement throughout the city.
The Los Angeles Philharmonic has a thing for star architects. As part of a trilogy of Mozart operas directed by Gustavo Dudamel (himself a global celebrity), in 2012 Â Frank Gehry designed the set for Don Giovanni, inÂ 2013Â Jean Nouvel designed oneÂ for The Marriage of Figaro, andÂ this monthÂ Zaha Hadid Architects hasÂ designedÂ the backdrop forÂ CosÃ¬ fan tutee, the trilogy’s finale.
According to the Los Angeles Conservancy, yet another John Lautner building is in imminent danger. This time it’s the architect’sÂ Crippled Children’s Society Rehabilitation Center, now known as the AbilityFirst Paul Weston Work Center, in Woodland Hills. Current owner AbilityFirst and Oakmont Senior Living, the potential buyer, submitted for a demolition and new construction permitÂ in February, hoping to build a new Eldercare facility on the site, and the project was presented at a city Zoning Administration public hearing this week.
Neil Denari‘sÂ firm NMDAÂ was recently awarded the commission for the WildwoodÂ School, a 65,000 square foot building for 500 students on Olympic Boulevard in West Los Angeles. Other firms consideredÂ for the commission included Koning Eizenberg and Gensler. Since the selection was based onÂ a team, not a scheme, “We are starting from scratch basically,” Denari said, adding that the “politics, culture, and academic agendas of the school are directly in line with our ideas as architects.” Stay tunedÂ toÂ see how that translates into a design.Â Meanwhile Denari is waiting for approval on another ground up structureÂ in the area: 9000 Wilshire, a curvaceous, highly three dimensional speculative office building in Beverly Hills.
Everything Loose Will Land
4 West Burton Place, Chicago
ThroughÂ July 26
Everything Loose Will Land explores the intersection of art and architecture in Los Angeles during the 1970s. The showâ€™s title refers to a Frank Lloyd Wright quote that if you â€œtip the world over on its side and everything loose will land in Los Angeles.â€ This freeness alludes to the fact that this dislodging did not lead to chaos but rather a multidisciplinary artistic community that redefined LA.
Having observed the absence of architecture and design materials from the American art collection scene, curator and scholar Christopher W. Mount decided to fill the gap himself. His eponymous Los Angeles gallery, housed in the Pacific Design Center, opens to the public on Friday, May 23 with A Modern Master: Photographs by Balthazar Korab. A second gallery, open by appointment, will be located on the Upper West Side in New York. â€œI really thought that this was the time,â€ said Mount. â€œI thought, â€˜Here is a subject matter that major museums collect, and there hasnâ€™t been somebody who opened a gallery.â€™â€ Read More