Silver Lake′s Grassy Nirvana Finally Opens

West
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
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After years of waiting, as of this past weekend Silver Lake residents can finally enjoy the “Meadow,” a 6-acre swath of grassy land adjacent to the Silver Lake Reservoir and west of Silver Lake Boulevard that’s been fought over and delayed for several years. It was determined that the Meadow could  be opened to the public because the Reservoir itself will soon be replaced as a drinking water source by underground storage tanks north of Griffith Park (plus restless neighbors fearing outsider encroachment and the destruction of local habitats finally relented). We finally had a spare second to check it out today, and were very impressed.

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Quick Clicks> Heckling Hadid, HL23 Highlight, Gimme Shelter, and the Ennis House Blues

Daily Clicks
Monday, April 4, 2011
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Zaha Hadid's proposed civic center in Elk Grove, California

Zaha Hadid's proposed civic center in Elk Grove, California

Heckling Hadid. The New York Times reports that the city council in Elk Grove, California is reconsidering its Bilbao moment. Once upon a time before the recession, the community hoped a community center designed by Zaha Hadid would bring acclaim to the suburban city. Now as plans are being reconsidered, the council only sees a “squid” or an “animal from another planet.”

LA on HL. Usually found prowling around the west coast, Christopher Hawthorne, architecture critic for the LA Times, has found his way to New York and takes a look at HL23, that condo tower perched above Manhattaned beloved High Line by LA architect Neil Denari.

Gimme (Smartly Planned) Shelter. It turns out that when Rolling Stones keyboardist Chuck Leavell isn’t rocking out, he’s pondering smart growth. Smart Planet relays a recent event at the National Press Club where Leavell and co-author J. Marshall Craig talk transportation, sustainability, and community growth.

Ennis House Blues. Curbed reports that Frank Lloyd Wright’s 1924 Ennis House in LA just can’t seem to find a buyer since it was put on the market in 2009. Originally listed at $15 million, the price has steadily dropped to its current $5.9 mil.

 

Bestor Unleashes Disco Silencio at SCI-Arc

Dean's List, Newsletter, West
Monday, April 4, 2011
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Architectural exhibition openings are hardly known for their cool vibe, but that’s apparently because they’re not usually put on by LA-based Barbara Bestor Architecture. On April 1 SCI-Arc opened Bestor’s Disco Silencio to a crowd very eager to party. The installation at the SCI-Arc gallery is a demi-dodecahedron formed in plywood meant to be a silent retreat for frazzled SCI-Arc architecture students (at least when the DJ isn’t spinning and disco lights are whirling).

Continue reading after the jump.

Filed Under: ,

Event> What Comes After Postmodern Architecture?

East
Monday, April 4, 2011
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Rafael Viñoly (Photo by Adam Friedberg)

Rafael Viñoly (Photo by Adam Friedberg)

  • What Comes After Postmodern Architecture?
    A Conversation with Rafael Viñoly
  • Museum of the City of New York
  • 1220 Fifth Avenue at 103rd Street
  • New York
  • Tuesday, April 5 at 6:30pm

Join Julie Iovine, executive editor at The Architect’s Newspaper, tomorrow (Tuesday) evening for a compelling discussion with architect Rafael Viñoly at the Museum of the City of New York at 6:30pm. The topic for the night, “What Comes After Postmodern Architecture?”, will tackle the state of New York City architecture.

The recent building boom in New York City has radically altered the look and feel of the city and added considerably to the list of starchitects currently reshaping New York’s iconic skyline. It has also helped redefine boundaries of the eclectic pluralism of postmodern architecture. How do we label the current architectural style of the last decade? Is there a post-postmodern?

Reservations required. Call 917-492-3395 or purchase tickets online through MCNY. Tickets: $12 for non-members, $8 for seniors & students, $6 for museum members.

Zumthor′s Secret Garden: First Look at 2011 Serpentine Pavilion

International, Newsletter
Monday, April 4, 2011
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Peter & Piet: Landscape architect Piet Oudolf will collaborate with Peter Zumthor on the 2011 Serpentine Pavilion (Courtesy Serpentine Gallery).

Today the Serpentine Gallery released the first renderings of Swiss architect Peter Zumthor‘s plans for its annual 2011 pavilion. Zumthor has recruited Piet Oudolf, the Dutch landscape designer who helped transform the High Line in New York, to work with him on the concept of a “hortus conclusus” (in case you skipped Latin class, that’s a secret garden within a garden).

Continue reading after the jump.

Is Wright Wrong on Chandigarh?

International
Friday, April 1, 2011
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Armchair from Chandigarh (Courtesy Wright Auction House)

Pierre Jeanneret armchair from Chandigarh (Courtesy Wright Auction House).

On March 31, the Wright auction house gingerly dipped into controversy with its sale of 23 lots of office furniture from Chandigarh even as the Indian government launched a belated international campaign to recover the pieces designed by Pierre Jeanneret for the masterwork by cousin Corbusier.

Continue reading after the jump.

Quick Clicks> Questionable Headline Edition

Daily Clicks
Friday, April 1, 2011
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With the proposed new canal on Prospect Park West, inner Brooklyn will have a waterfront of its own.

With the proposed new canal on Prospect Park West, inner Brooklyn will have a waterfront of its own.

NYCDOT Announces New, Forward-Thinking Plan for Prospect Park West (PPS)

A Visionary Plan to Eliminate Traffic Congestion in NYC (PPS)

NYC DOT: Pedestrian-on-Pedestrian Crashes Alarmingly Frequent (Transpo Nation)

PR Consultant Re-Brands Shrinking City as ‘Taking a People Diet’ (Planetizen)

New Ben & Jerry’s Flavor Released: Janette Sadik-Pecan (Planetizen)

Landscape Urbanists and New Urbanists to Settle Debate After Class, Behind the Gym (Planetizen)

9 Months After 9-Day Traffic Jam, A Baby Boom in Beijing (Planetizen)

Chuck Schumer: America Needs More Streets Like Prospect Park West (StreetsBlog)

City of St. Louis to Replace Municipal Courts with New 14th Street Garage (Vanishing STL)

Obama Convinces Brazil to Give Chicago the 2016 Olympics (Sloopin)

Children’s Museum out, Walmart in at Grant Park (Yo Chicago)

Google Purchases Dubai’s World of Islands for Google Shaped Floating Cities (Inhabitat)

My Toddler Will Become America’s Next Great Architect (McSweeney’s)

Celebrities Who Look Like Houses (Curbed)

Filed Under: 

Persistence of Plastics at Columbia′s GSAPP

Dean's List, East
Friday, April 1, 2011
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Monsanto's House of the Future for Disneyland. Courtesy Yesterdayland.

The first panel of this week’s conference at Columbia’s GSAPP, “Permanent Change: Plastics in Architecture and Engineering,” got down to business a few minutes late on Thursday morning. After a brief welcome, Dean Mark Wigley ceded the floor to Michael Bell, the first speaker in the line-up for “The Emergence of Polymers: Natural Material–Industrial Material.” But the pace picked up as Bell and subsequent presenters took listeners on an intense romp through the role of plastics in architectural history, providing background for the nine panels to follow through Friday evening.

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Doban Architecture′s Academic Center: Think Fabricate

Fabrikator
Friday, April 1, 2011
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Brought to you with support from:
Fabrikator
Fabrikator Brought to you by: 

Prefabricated faculty offices offer space for one-on-one tutoring (Kevin Chu Photography)

A custom-built environment allows faculty and students to work collaboratively at a new academic center in the Bronx.

Doban Architecture has a longstanding history with Monroe College. In 2009, the Brooklyn-based firm founded by Susan Doban completed a modular pod design for the Bronx school’s loft-style dormitories at 565 Main Street, a building for which they had also worked on an award-winning facade restoration. Last fall, the firm completed a renovation of the school’s 2,360-square-foot academic center with a scheme that allows students and faculty to interact in a collaborative environment. Neither of these projects would have been possible without Think Fabricate, the firm’s sister company. Co-founded by Doban and Jason Gorsline in November 2009, the design studio handles design projects across a range of disciplines—furniture, product, graphic, and industrial—in addition to operating its own fabrication shop in a shared East Williamsburg workspace.

Read more after the jump.

Stanford Hospital Plans to Be Surprisingly Hospitable

West
Friday, April 1, 2011
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The new hospital will be the tall man on the Stanford campus. Courtesy Rafael Viñoly Architects.

The new hospital will be the tall man on the Stanford campus. Courtesy Rafael Viñoly Architects.

One of the biggest projects on the San Francisco Peninsula is the upcoming $720 million Stanford Hospital.  It will replace — though not displace — the hospital’s current home, a three-story affair designed by Edward Durell Stone in 1959, which has a concrete brise-soleil and is very much a building of its time. The new structure, which Rafael Viñoly Architects is in charge of, looks more like a hotel than a hospital, and the design is an indication of what state-of-the-art healthcare facilities are emphasizing these days. Designed to maximize natural lighting in what is often a rather closed, oppressive environment, the Viñoly hospital features a checkerboard layout, in which buildings are interspersed with squares of open space.

Read more after the jump.

Quick Clicks> Clouds, Danger, DC, Rigor

Daily Clicks
Thursday, March 31, 2011
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Video screen capture of Qatar World Cup stadium's shading "cloud," via CNN.

BYO Cloud. Not since the Romans stretched the vela around the Coliseum has there been such a radical solution for stadium shading. Qatar plans to create man-made clouds (“a lightweight carbon structure carrying a giant envelope of material containing helium gas”) to float over the stadium where the World Cup will be held in the summer of 2022. More details in The Daily Mail.

Fatal attraction? Why do we live in dangerous places? Scientific American investigates their allure and the ecological consequences–good and bad–for both plant and animal life.

ESI 2 DC. The Washington Post reports that President Obama has tapped New York’s own Edwin Schlossberg, founder of the interactive design firm ESI, to serve on a federal panel that helps oversee the architecture and design of the nation’s capital. (Schlossberg is the more designer-y half of Caroline Kennedy and also one of the founders of the not-for-profit desigNYC.)

More rigor, less speed. At Slate, Witold Rybczynski makes the case for slow architecture: “No wonder that Renaissance architectural treatises often seem cerebral; architects spent a lot of time thinking before they started drawing.”

watch Qatar cloud video after the jump

LA Conservancy Votes To Preserve Community Redevelopment Agencies

West
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
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The renovation of the Hollywood Palladium was made possible by a CRA/LA grant. ©Coe Architects

As California’s redevelopment agencies face possible extinction, one notable group has thrown its hat into the ring. The LA Conservancy has announced that it will give its annual President’s Award to the Community Redevelopment Agency of Los Angeles (CRA/LA) for “Its commitment to reusing historic structures—and promoting historic preservation” in its redevelopment plans. “We thought it was a timely way to recognize what they’ve been doing and their role in trying to foster strategic investments across the city,” said Adrian Scott Fine, the Conservancy’s Director of Advocacy, who pointed to the agency’s help with, financing, surveys, and in some cases purchase of historic buildings to  attract investment in historic conservation.

Read more after the jump.

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