Guy Horton behind the scenes at the 2015 AIA Los Angeles Design Awards

Architecture, Awards, West
Tuesday, November 10, 2015
Gold Medal recipient Steven Ehrlich speaks to the crowd about the power of collaboration, which he first learned in Africa. (David Lena Photography)

Gold Medal recipient Steven Ehrlich speaks to the crowd about the power of collaboration, which he first learned in Africa.
(David Lena Photography)

Going to the AIA/LA Design Awards is a totally different experience when you’ve been on the jury, as I was this year. For one, you get to see the entire spectrum of the awards program, the behind-the-scenes production and the staging of what seemed like a thousand projects flashing before you in a darkened room. Not only do you have the heavy responsibility of judging all of these, but also you then have to champion and defend the ones that really speak to you. There was a lot of debate and discussion—and even some yelling and throwing of chairs involved. And probably way too much caffeine.

Continue reading after the jump.

Monterey Becomes Eclectic: Lessons from the Monterey Design Conference

Architecture, Design, West
Tuesday, October 20, 2015
Architects gather for the 2015 Monterey Design Conference held at Julia Morgan's Asilomar. (Courtesy @rjcarch/ Instagram)

Architects gather for the 2015 Monterey Design Conference held at Julia Morgan’s Asilomar. (Courtesy @rjcarch/ Instagram)

A weekend at the 2015 Monterey Design Conference (MDC) held at Asilomar leads to a wealth and variety of insights about architecture and design. Including a lesson in “uglyful,” says Guy Horton.

Read about the conference after the jump.

San Francisco to launch Market Street Prototype Festival in April

Mineral Benches (Mary Anne Kluth)

Mineral Benches (Mary Anne Kluth)

In 2018, San Francisco plans to give Market Street a serious facelift. But first the city wanted a way to gather community input and include citizens in the design process. This was the beginning of the Market Street Prototyping Festival, which in April will unveil the work of 50 design teams up and down Market’s sidewalks. The 50 teams were selected from more than 200 submissions by a jury made up of experts from local design firms, community organizations, technology companies, and government. Read More

Anaheim’s ARTIC high speed rail station packs a serious technical punch

Newsletter, Technology, West
Monday, February 2, 2015

Fluid Dynamics analysis to test radiant heating and cooling inside ARTIC (HOK/ Buro Happold)

HOK’s ARTIC, Anaheim’s high speed rail train station which AN featured today, is as much a story about technology and engineering as it is about high design. Slated to achieve a LEED Platinum rating, ARTIC is the product of an integrated, multidisciplinary BIM design process where key decisions about technology and engineering were brought into the design process from the beginning to achieve a high-tech, high-performance, and high-efficiency building.

Continue reading after the jump.

Re-Defining Home: New competition wants designers to rethink home in an age of unaffordability

Monday, December 22, 2014
Ennead Architects' Schermerhorn House in Boerum Hill connects good affordable architecture and community amenities. (Ennead Architects)

Ennead Architects’ Schermerhorn House in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn merges well-designed supportive housing with community amenities. (David Sundberg/Esto )

Home Matters, a national movement dedicated to raising awareness about the need for affordable housing, has launched a competition called “Re-defining Home: A Design Challenge.” As the name suggests, the competition (partnered with AIA chapters around the country, and funded in part by the  Wells Fargo Housing Foundation) seeks to re-define the home of the future, with a focus on solutions for affordability and a new conception of home,  beyond “four walls.”

COntinue reading after the jump.

Honors> AIA / LA hands out its annual roster of awards

Architecture, Awards, West
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Million Dollar, home to this year's AIA/LA Awards

Downtown LA’s Million Dollar Theater, home to this year’s AIA/LA Awards (Sam Lubell/ AN)

I love going to Downtown Los Angeles. It’s changed. A lot. And what a fantastic way to celebrate the AIA/LA Design Awards: down on Broadway, choreographed by the Awards Committee to triangulate the historic Million Dollar Theater, the iconic Bradbury Building, and the revamped Grand Central Market for the closing party. In fact, it was so well-choreographed that it was difficult to pull people from the Bradbury (all those fantastic wood, iron, and marble details were lit up in the vertigo-inducing atrium like some movie set) to the actual theater and get them in their seats for the awards presentation. That was the vibe. It was a good time, spilling and tripping out into the street from one venue to the next.

COntinue reading after the jump.

Jerde brainstorms ways to improve shaky safety record of Malibu’s Pacific Coast Highway

City Terrain, Transportation, Urbanism, West
Thursday, November 6, 2014
Jerde's PCH diagrams (Jerde)

Jerde’s PCH diagrams (Jerde)

When Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti came into office in 2013, his first Executive Directive was to establish the Great Streets Initiative, intended to make many of the city’s streets more neighborhood friendly, bike friendly, pedestrian friendly—friendly all around. If it were up to film producer Michel Shane, Pacific Coast Highway (PCH), specifically the 27 miles that run through Malibu, a stretch known as the Malibu Corridor, would be at the top of Garcetti’s list. In 2010, Shane’s thirteen-year-old daughter, Emily Rose Shane, was struck and killed by an out-of-control driver as she was walking along the side of the highway. In fact, this section of PCH is one of the most dangerous highways in the country, where hundreds of accidents, many of them fatal, occur annually.

Continue reading after the jump.

Hadrian Predock selected to lead USC undergraduate architecture program

Dean's List, News, Shft+Alt+Del, West
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Hadrian Predock (USC)

Hadrian Predock (USC)

USC School of Architecture has announced that Hadrian Predock will serve as its next director of undergraduate programs. Starting this fall he will take over the position from Alice Kimm, who served for four years. “I’m thrilled,” said Predock. “This is an exciting time as architecture continues to pull out of the recession, and I’m looking forward to helping position the school in larger conversations about where the profession is going.”

Continue reading after the jump.

OMA Moving Ahead on Major Mixed-Use Project in Santa Monica After All


The Plaza at Santa Monica (OMA)

After being sent back to the drawing board last fall, OMA’s mixed use Plaza at Santa Monica appears to be moving ahead once again. Located on a prime piece of Santa Monica–owned real estate on Arizona Avenue between 4th and 5th streets, the development—part of a glut of new mixed-use projects in the city—will be OMA’s first ever large scale project in Southern California. They are partnering with local firm Van Tilberg, Banvard & Soderbergh (VTBS).

Continue reading after the jump.

Los Angeles Earthquake Report: Be Afraid

Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Hospital in Sylmar destroyed by the San Fernando Earthquake.  (US Geological Survey)

Hospital in Sylmar destroyed by the San Fernando Earthquake. (US Geological Survey)

If you live or work in one of LA’s many older concrete buildings and happened to read the  Los Angeles Times recent story, “Concrete Risks,” your building, as swanky and detailed as it may be, may never be experienced in quite the same light. The report sounds the alarm on over 1,000 concrete buildings in the city and throughout the region that “may be at risk of collapsing in a major earthquake.”

Continue reading after the jump.

OMA’s Santa Monica Scheme Sent Back To The Drawing Board; BIG Back In The Running

Newsletter, West
Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Rendering of The Plaza at Santa Monica (OMA/ Metropolitan Pacific Capital)

Rendering of The Plaza at Santa Monica (OMA/ Metropolitan Pacific Capital)

Back in July it looked like Rem Koolhaas was about to land his first large-scale commission in Los Angeles with The Plaza at Santa Monica, a mega-mixed-use complex that would have graced a city-owned parcel at Fourth and Arizona streets. City officials seemed genuinely wowed by OMA’s theatrically-terraced design and a city selection committee recommended to Santa Monica City Council that they enter formal contract negotiations with the project’s developer, Metropolitan Pacific Capital.

But last week, the city council issued a resounding, “Not so fast,” voting almost unanimously against the recommendation, citing concerns over a lack of affordable housing.

Read More

Elon Musk’s Hyperloop Proposal Pushes California To Look Toward Future of Transportation

Friday, August 16, 2013
Sketches of Hyperloop Alpha's mobile pods (Tesla Motors)

Sketches of Hyperloop Alpha’s transit capsules (Tesla Motors)

When Elon Musk makes plans he makes no little ones. And he feels California shouldn’t either. This is the rationale behind Hyperloop Alpha, a supersonic, solar-powered, air-cushioned transit system (and future “Never Built”?) he views as the bolder alternative to conventional high-speed rail. It’s not a train, exactly. It’s more a hybrid between high-speed rail and the Concord.

Continue reading after the jump.

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