Plus Pool Needs Money For Mock-Up

Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Rendering of the Plus Pool on the East River. (Courtesy Plus Pool)

Rendering of the Plus Pool on the East River. (Courtesy Plus Pool)

For nearly a decade now, New Yorkers have been turning their focus on revitalizing the city’s waterfront, a trend that has only grown in the wake of Hurricane SandyWXY Architecture’s East River Blueway and Bloomberg’s Vision 2020 are two examples of initiatives that seek to build sustainable, accessible, and engaging shorelines for the city. But with summer approaching and the days heating up, what city dwellers may want most from their estuaries is a cool, clean dip. Brooklyn-based design firms Family Architects and PlayLab hope to make that dream possible, but they still need $250,000 to get started.

Continue reading after the jump.

Cooper-Hewitt Announces 14th Annual National Design Awards Winners

East, National, Newsletter
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Studio Gang Architects won in the architecture category. (Steve Hall / Courtesy Cooper-Hewitt)

Studio Gang Architects won in the architecture category. This is their design for a Lincoln Park Zoo pavilion in Chicago. (Steve Hall / Courtesy Cooper-Hewitt)

Acting director Caroline Baumann of The Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum has announced the winners of the 2013 National Design Awards. The 14th annual Awards program continues the practice of acknowledging excellence and innovation across an array of disciplines. This year’s winners will be recognized during a gala dinner on Thursday, October 17 at New York’s Pier 60 in conjunction with National Design Week, where they will be presented with trophies created by The Corning Museum of Glass.

View all the winners after the jump.

NYC Department of Design and Construction Announces New Roster for City Projects

East, Newsletter
Friday, May 3, 2013
New York City Department of Design and Construction Commissioned Steven Holl Architects to Design new Hunters Point Community Library in Queens

New York City Department of Design and Construction Commissioned Steven Holl Architects to design new Hunters Point Community Library in Queens for a prior Design + Construction Excellence Program

All too often public buildings can fall short on creativity, but with the launch of the Design + Construction Excellence Program in 2004, the Bloomberg administration has raised the ante and tapped a number of top architecture firms from around the world to work on a slew of new city projects. The New York City Department of Design and Construction (DDC) announced today that they have selected 26 emerging and leading architecture firms out of pool of 264 applicants to participate in the next wave of the program, including the likes of BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group,  nArchitects, and TEN Arquitectos. Read More

Orly Genger’s “Red, Yellow and Blue” Adds Bands of Color to Madison Square Park

City Terrain, East
Thursday, May 2, 2013
Installation view of Orly Genger’s Red, Yellow and Blue in Madison Square Park. (The Architect's Newspaper)

Installation view of Orly Genger’s Red, Yellow and Blue in Madison Square Park. (The Architect’s Newspaper)

Yesterday, brilliant sunshine, a gentle spring breeze, and 65 degree weather set the scene for the inauguration ceremony of Orly Genger’s remarkable new art installation, titled Red, Yellow and Blue, in Madison Square Park. As you navigate your way through the park you will find yourself surrounded by a fanciful scene, as vibrant undulating walls arch into blossoming trees, spill onto lush lawns, and unfurl all around you.

“Orly Genger has woven her magic throughout the park,” said Mayor Bloomberg, who spoke at the inauguration ceremony. The large-scale project was installed as the latest chapter of Mad. Sq. Art, a public contemporary arts program presented by Madison Square Park Conservancy that aims to revitalize the park as well as the surrounding community. “[Red Yellow and Blue] is both innovative and environmentally sustainable. It is projects like this that are a big part of what gives New York City our identity and attracts visitors to our city,” said Bloomberg.

Continue reading after the jump.

Rockwell Group Designs A Treehouse-esque Playground for Park in Brownsville

Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Rendering of Imagination Playground in Brownsville by the Rockwell Group (Courtesy of the Rockwell Group)

Rendering of Imagination Playground in Brownsville by the Rockwell Group (Courtesy of the Rockwell Group)

The Rockwell Group and NYC Parks unveiled their plans last week to turn a 1.5-acre section of Betsy Head Park in Brownsville into a lush and active playground. When designing Imagination Playground, the firm looked to treehouses for inspiration. The site will feature a winding ramp that snakes around London Plane trees and connects to slides and a series of jungle gyms that spill out into an open area with sand, water, benches, and plantings.

Read More

Apple Makes Adjustments To Silicon Valley Campus Proposal

Friday, April 26, 2013
Newly released pedestrian improvements planned for Apple's Silicon Valley headquarters. (Courtesy Apple)

Newly released pedestrian improvements planned for Apple’s Silicon Valley headquarters. (Courtesy Apple)

Apple’s spaceship-like campus plans, designed by Foster and Partners, have been criticized for—among other other things— a lack of pedestrian friendly design. It appears the company has listened. New documents presented to the city of Cupertino show extended bike paths, winding walkways and private roads both circling the grounds and running through the center of the campus.  The bike lanes would have buffer lanes to protect them from cars, pedestrian walkways would have increased lighting, a transit center would be the focal point for buses, and the plans also make room for public art projects.

Not all the changes are eco/pedestrian friendly. The new design calls for an increase in parking spaces from 10,500 to 10,980. Slated for completion in 2016, the campus has also been in the news for budget overruns and delays, with Bloomberg Businessweek reporting its cost ballooning from $3 billion to $5 billion. The first phase of the campus is scheduled to be complete by 2016.The original date was 2015.

More new renderings of Apple’s campus after the jump.

Hudson Yards at the Center for Architecture – “Design in the Heart of New York.”

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A two-month exhibition will reveal never before seen architecture and design elements of the historic 26-acre Hudson Yards development. The public will be able to engage directly with the visionaries who are redefining New York’s skyline. An 8 week speaker series will feature the creative and celebrated architects behind the Hudson Yards master plan, and what Mayor Bloomberg calls New York City’s “Next Great Neighborhood.”

To commemorate the opening of the exhibit, Open House New York will host two guided tours of the exhibit by Hudson Yards planners and members of the architect design teams on Saturday, May 4th.

The first 5,000 visitors to the exhibit, and other Hudson Yards AIA events, will receive a Make City “Build our Own Hudson Yards” postcard set designed by world renowned paper engineer Keisuke Saka.

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NYFi Wins People Choice Award for Reinvent the Payphone Design Challenge

Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Sage and Coombe Architect's NYFi conceptual design.

Sage and Coombe Architect’s NYFi conceptual design.

The people have spoken (well, “clicked”) and the votes are in—NYFi wins the Popular Choice Award for Mayor Bloomberg’s “Reinvent the Payphone Design Challenge!” The winners of the Connectivity, Visual Design, Creativity, Functionality, and Community Impact categories were announced in early March but the Popular Choice winner was decided last week by public vote via the City of New York’s Facebook page.

Continue reading after the jump.

Fool Me Once: It’d Be A Shame to Miss This April Fools Roundup

Monday, April 1, 2013
Rendering of "Mount Stachemore" in Buffalo. (Courtesy The Good Neighborhood)

Rendering of “Mount Stachemore” in Buffalo. (Courtesy The Good Neighborhood)

Buffalo’s Hirsute Pursuit. An old 140-foot-tall concrete grain elevator in Buffalo is being converted into a rock-climbing facility, Silo City Rocks. That much is true, but today, a group of mustachioed city-boosters unveiled a giant mural project to celebrate “famous mustached Buffalonians Grover Cleveland, Lindy Ruff, Rick James and Mark Twain.” Dubbed “Mount Stachemore,” the mural will be part of a planned Mustache Hall of Fame and Museum. Head brewer for Flying Bison beer was on hand to announce a new product sharing the same name: “My mustache is made thick by the foam of Flying Bison beer; in turn, Mount Stachemore Ale has a thick-hearted body and smooth finish, and we look forward to serving it at Silo City for centuries to come.” The group said they hope the mural by artist Max Collins will be complete by August 17.

Calling Fred and Carrie. The city of Portland, OR is famous for its progressive stance on transportation. To stay ahead of the competition, Portland Transport reports the city has announced a new public transit program aimed at increasing the horse-power on city streets – literally. A new hay-ride system gliding along high-tech RUTS (rapid ungulate tracking system) and complete with alfalfa-filled bioswales at intersections could open in 2017.

Florida’s New Pad in Boca. The epic battle between urbanism foes Richard Florida and Joel Kotkin appears to have fizzed, according to Planetizen. Suburban sympathizer Kotkin has switched sides to embrace the creative class. “The old school is dead. This is the new American economy – spontaneously meeting people, sharing ideas, Tweeting stuff.” Urban advocate Florida had his own change of heart, trading his latte for a lawnmower in a surprising appeal for suburbia. “If that ain’t what people want, why would they keep building it?”

Minneapolis St. Sprawl. Seemingly following Florida to the ‘burbs, a new plan for the future of Minneapolis-Saint Paul ditches density in favor of suburban sprawl. “It is time to reflect and realize that we need to shift our walking-oriented ways and rely more on the magnificent creation that is the car.”

Your Kiss Is On My List. Smoking, soft drinks, and now kissing? According to the Project for Public Spaces, New York’s Mayor Michael “Ban-it-all” Bloomberg is reportedly set to usher in a new PDA ban for New York City parks as studies suggest intimacy is on the rise.

I Haz High Line. While you can’t love your fellow human being in public for much longer, Friends of the High Line have been showing their affection for cats. The group hosted its first annual cat festival on the renamed “High FeLine,” which took a turn for the worse when the animals ingested too much catmint: “In what appeared to be a drug-induced mania, the cats jumped wildly up and down the Seating Steps, sending visitors’ macchiatos and kombucha teas flying.”

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Edward Durell Stone-Designed School Could Make Way For Luxury Tower

Friday, March 29, 2013
Edward Durell Stone's PS 199. (Courtesy Google Maps)

Edward Durell Stone’s PS 199. (Courtesy Google Maps)

New York City’s financially-strapped Department of Education is seeking to cash in on a 99,000 square foot lot on 70th Street just west of Broadway, but a local elementary school and the legacy of one of America’s first Modernists stand in the way. If the Department gets its way, the three-story P.S. 199, designed in 1963 by Edward Durell Stone, will be sold to developers and replaced by a 340-foot-tall luxury residential tower in the already crowded Upper West Side neighborhood.

Continue reading after the jump.

A Spruced Up Central Park Precinct Opens to Public

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Exterior of Central Park Precinct (Courtesy of New York City Department of Design + Construction)

Exterior of Central Park Precinct (Courtesy of New York City Department of Design + Construction)

Mayor Bloomberg and the NYPD gathered yesterday to unveil the newly renovated Central Park Precinct, the oldest stationhouse in the city. According to DNAinfo, the $61 million project included repairs to the crumbling building and a new canopy and glass atrium over the lobby, with the help of Karlsberger Architects.

More photos after the jump.

Groundbreaking> Snøhetta’s Star Turn on Broadway

Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Rendering of a redesigned Times Square. (Courtesy MIR)

Rendering of a redesigned Times Square. (Courtesy MIR)

Today, New York City broke ground on the new paving/plaza/seating design for Times Square, created by Snøhetta. Dark pavers inset with reflective stainless steel discs will provide a muted backdrop for the area’s frenzy of light and crowds. Monumental benches, with concealed electrical infrastructure for events, will provide a variety of seating, lounging, and viewing options. Moreover, the project signals the Bloomberg administration‘s desire to make its pedestrian plazas permanent.

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