The new boom in architecture work has been a godsend for once-struggling firms nationwide. But there’s a downside. Offices consistently tell us that a hangover of the brutal recession is that they’re hesitant to hire large quantities of new workers, which means more work for not enough people. This, of course, means exhaustion and stress. And so we’ll dub the new economy the Nervous Breakdown Boom until we can think of something better.
We’ve been collecting dribs and drabs about the next phase of development along the already booming Los Angeles River, and the next is that the LA River Revitalization Corporation—the non-profit created to oversee development around the changing waterway—is hoping to put together a dream team of architects and planners to do something ambitious. The group won’t comment on the specifics (though their last board meeting did discuss “projects, infrastructure, and investment, according to the agenda), but we’re very curious to learn more about this.
The last time Robert Durst—the accused killer and heir to one of New York City’s most influential real estate dynasties—was behind bars in the Southwest, he was on trial for the murder of his neighbor, Morris Black, in Galveston, Texas. That time he was caught after swiping a sandwich and some Band-Aids from a Pennsylvania supermarket while wearing cross-dressing attire. Now, he is donning an orange jumpsuit once again.
Grand Prairie, Texas, has been spared what could have been the nation’s first indoor ski resort and Hard Rock Hotel. The project’s developer, The Grand Alps Group, pulled the $215 million proposal after a meeting with Grand Prairie’s mayor and city manager. They were not happy about losing the big fish. “We were a little surprised,” City Manager Tom Hart told the Dallas Morning News. “We thought we had a pretty good meeting.”
Eavesdrop is scratching its head. First, in January, Gensler released new renderings for the Hotel Alessandra in downtown Houston. Where before the firm had proposed a sleek modern glass tower for the site with strong, swooping vertical lines that accentuated the building’s height, the new iteration shows a collection of rectilinear facade treatments of varying levels of transparency arranged to express a podium, tower, and crown with cornice. Jonathan Brinsden, CEO of the project’s developer, Midway, described the new look as a “modern interpretation of European style.”