Minneapolis takes a cue from the Netherlands with city’s first woonerf shared street

A woonerf street in Jimbocho, Tokyo. (Rob Ketcherside via Flickr)

A woonerf street in Jimbocho, Tokyo. (Rob Ketcherside via Flickr)

A residential development in downtown Minneapolis is set to give the city its first woonerf, a road type developed in the Netherlands that integrates vehicle traffic and parking with pedestrians, bicyclists and public amenities. Read More

How New York City plans to make affordable housing taller and more architecturally interesting

(Flickr / Anthony Quintano)

(Flickr / Anthony Quintano)

Last year, at an event inside David Adjaye’s Sugar Hill affordable housing development in Manhattan, AN asked New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio how architecture and design factored into his overall housing plan. The mayor—who doesn’t elevate public design the way Michael Bloomberg did—said he wants to see new affordable housing buildings that are both “beautiful” and “contextually appropriate.” But, he added, design is about more than aesthetics, it is a tool to be wielded to create dynamic, mixed-use properties. “I think the design question really is about, to me, the functionality—meaning, what we can achieve in a site,” said the mayor.

Continue reading after the jump.

Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards honor affordable housing, preservation

The Chicago Community Trust honored successful efforts by community members to name the city's historic Pullman neighborhood a national monument.

The Chicago Community Trust honored successful efforts by community members to name the city’s historic Pullman neighborhood a national monument.

Preservation projects took home top honors during the architectural portion of this year’s Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards (CNDA), exemplifying humanistic design in the too-often overlooked arenas of affordable housing and community development.

Continue reading after the jump.

Watchdog InsideAirbnb challenges claims made by the popular apartment-sharing site

Development, East
Tuesday, February 17, 2015
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Airbnb listings in New York City. (Courtesy Inside Airbnb)

Airbnb listings in New York City. (Courtesy Inside Airbnb)

Airbnb, the hugely popular apartment rental site, has managed to amass a broad coalition of detractors in New York including developers, the State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, the New York City Council, and affordable housing advocates. The main line of attack being levied against Airbnb is that it is making New York City’s affordability crisis even worse.

Continue reading after the jump.

De Blasio administration unveils East New York rezoning to promote affordable housing

Development, East, News, Urbanism
Wednesday, February 4, 2015
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A portion of East New York to be rezoned. (Courtesy Bing)

A portion of East New York to be rezoned. (Courtesy Bing)

The de Blasio Administration has unveiled new details for one of the most significant pieces of its ambitious affordable housing plan: the rezoning of Brooklyn’s East New York neighborhood.

Read More

Could New York learn from these temporary affordable prefab homes in the Netherlands?

Courtesy Heijmans ONE

(Courtesy Heijmans ONE)

Affordable housing has been a critical part of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s agenda since taking office, promising to create or preserve 200,000 affordable units over the next decade. At a press conference last week, the mayor announced that his administration has made headway toward achieving this ambitious goal, financing over 17,300 affordable homes in the last year (whether his predecessor, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, should have received some credit for this accomplishment has spurred debate).

Continue reading after the jump.

Eavesdrop> Study shows Angelenos hard up for rent

Eavesdroplet, West
Monday, January 12, 2015
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The Los Angeles skyline. (Mulling it Over / Flickr)

The Los Angeles skyline. (Mulling it Over / Flickr)

Forget about San Francisco being the hardest place to rent in California. According to a story in the New York Times (citing zillow.com), Angelenos spend 47 percent of their income on the median rent. That’s the highest in the country, and significantly higher than San Francisco, which ranks sixth on the list at 40.7 percent. And the problem appears ready to get worse as new supply struggles to keep up with demand in the overcrowded city. Maybe we’ll all have to move to Bakersfield.

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

National
Monday, December 22, 2014
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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.

COOKFOX’s second Pacific Park tower in Brooklyn breaks ground near the Barclays Center

Architecture, Development, East
Monday, December 15, 2014
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535 Carlton. (Courtesy COOKFOX)

535 Carlton. (Courtesy COOKFOX)

This morning, Greenland Forest City Partners broke ground on 535 Carlton Avenue—the second tower to rise at Pacific Park in Brooklyn, the development formerly known as Atlantic Yards. The COOKFOX-designed masonry tower will rise 18 stories and include nearly 300 affordable units: 50 percent middle-income, 20 percent moderate, and 30 percent low-income.

Read More

SLO Architecture helps preserve New York City’s disappearing graffiti walls

Architecture, Art, East, Preservation
Monday, December 8, 2014
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The new canopy. (Courtesy SLO Architecture)

The new canopy. (Courtesy SLO Architecture)

Demolition of the graffiti mecca known as “5Pointz” in Long Island City, Queens has become a flashpoint in New York City development. The iconic arts institution was literally whitewashed by the developer last spring and has since been turned to rubble to make way for two rental towers. As the controversial project continues in Queens, the destruction of another world-renowned graffiti forum, just a few miles away in the South Bronx, has gone largely unnoticed.

Read More

Tonight> AIANY presents A Changing Landscape: Public Space and the New Administration

Architecture, East
Monday, November 3, 2014
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(Courtesy AECOM)

(Courtesy AECOM)

What is New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio‘s position on design and public space? Does he care about design or think it is simply a prerogative of the city’s middle class populations? It is one the conundrums of the current administration that it wants to create 200,000 units of affordable housing but does not seem to care about the architecture of the buildings or or how they might affect their surrounding neighborhoods. There is much that is laudable in the mayor’s push for new affordable housing, but will all this new construction be a step back from the progressive attitude of the Bloomberg administration concerning the physical and spatial aspects of the city?

These issues—and others of great concern to the city’s design community—will be the topic of discussion tonight at the AIANY’s Center for Architecture on LaGuardia Place in a panel discussion called “A Changing Landscape: Public Space and the New Administration.”

Read More

“Breaking New Ground” Competition Tackles Affordable Housing in the Coachella Valley

Architecture, West
Monday, September 22, 2014
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Resort communities and and shanty towns exist side by side in California's Coachella Valley. (Orin Zebest / Flickr)

Resort communities and and shanty towns exist side by side in California’s Coachella Valley. (Orin Zebest / Flickr)

Architectural competitions with substantial cash prizes tend to focus on monuments, museums, and other high-brow concerns. Such is not the case for Breaking New Ground: Designing Affordable Housing for the Coachella Valley Workforce. Sponsored by The California Endowment, a Los Angeles–based private health organization, Breaking New Ground targets the gap between the people who come to the Eastern Coachella Valley to play and those who keep its $4 billion agriculture and tourism industries running.

Continue reading after the jump.

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