Point of View - Point of View May 2012

 

Roundtable: Calatrava, Childs, and Libeskind on the World Trade Center

The trio discuss architecture's healing powers, the function of symbolism, and the spiritual need to rebuild.

1 World Trade Center rendering Courtesy SOM/dbox studio Heroic. Contemplative. Grieving. Victorious. The rebirth of the former World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan has engendered significant public reaction and reflection. With implications as complex as they are profound, it is not surprising that it has taken more than a decade to heal the urban scars of September 11, 2001….

The Educated Eye

On a grey Tuesday afternoon, as ICFF exhibitors and attendees prepared to depart the confines of the Jacob Javits Convention Center after the latest edition of the design fair, I went to Carroll Gardens in Brooklyn. There I sat down with Marianne and David Russell at the airy, light filled indoor patio of Le Petit Cafe to catch up with…

The Viability and Vision of Oyster-tecture

Oyster-tecture envisions a network of oyster reefs: a continental-scale storm water management system that would spur tourism, aid public health, and create a biologically-rich living laboratory.

Oyster-tecture envisions a network of oyster reefs: a continental-scale storm water management system that would spur tourism, aid public health, and create a biologically-rich living laboratory.

Q&A: Andrew Blum on the Internet’s Physical Spaces

Andrew Blum’s new book, "Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet" is an evocative trip to the heart of the Internet.

Metropolis contributing editor Andrew Blum’s first book, Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet appears today in bookstores (and presumably on iPads and Kindles as well). I had the pleasure of reading it in galleys a couple of months ago. It’s an evocative trip to the heart of the Internet, a look at both the physical connections behind…

For Four Years Now, Indiana University Has Held Energy Challenges

But has it brought them any closer to becoming a fully sustainable campus?

How do you convince 49,000 students, faculty, and staff at Indiana University (IU) to turn off lights and computers, to walk up stairs instead of taking the elevator, and to turn off the water a minute or two earlier in the shower? How do you convince an entire community to become more aware of their daily energy use and the…

Yale to Renovate Complex Containing Kahn’s University Art Gallery

The New-York based Ennead architects are tasked with providing additions to the complex, which contains Louis Kahn's 1953 architectural marvel.

The Yale University Art Gallery (YUAG) stands at the corner of York and Chapel Streets in New Haven, within the walls of Louis Kahn’s 1953 architectural marvel. For the past six years, only the Kahn building at the YUAG has been open to visitors. But this coming December the entire complex, renovated and expanded, will re-open, marking the completion of…

Q&A: Jerry Helling on the “Real” Issues Young Designers Face

For the better part of a decade, the Bernhardt Design creative director has been a tireless supporter of aspiring designers.

For the better part of a decade, Jerry Helling has been a tireless supporter of young designers. Some of those efforts, I suspect, were born of frustration. In his role as president and creative director at Bernhardt Design, he’s experienced first-hand the disconnect between the dreams and visions of novice designers and the sometimes brutal realities of the marketplace. Helling…

Want To Design Better Hospitals? Put Them in Walkable Communities

There is a wide disconnect between the Fit City movement and how hospitals and healthcare facilities are designed.

The 20th Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) concluded this spring with a rousing speech by Dr. Richard Jackson, a pediatrician and chair of Environmental Health Sciences at the UCLA School of Public Health. You may have seen him hosting the four-part documentary Designing Healthy Communities on PBS, which previewed the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) just released report Weight of…

What Is the Architect’s Role When It Comes to Energy Reform?

Architects need to reconsider the types of buildings they are designing as well as the materials used during the construction process.

Solar Retrofit (in product development phase), image via itac.utah.edu Last week we explored different energy efficient, cost-efficient, and resource-conscientious approaches to architecture and construction. This week, we continue the conversation with ITAC director, professor Ryan E. Smith. Let’s begin by examining the architect’s role in society. Too often they are seen as people who produce individual structures. And so architects…

Rejection is a Good Teacher

Robert Hammond is executive director and co-founder (with Joshua David) of Friends of the High Line. The non-profit group is responsible for the High Line park located on a once derelict, elevated rail line that was built in 1934 on New York City’s west side. Their phenomenal success in reviving this remnant from the past continues to inspire projects and…

We’re Still Waiting on a Solution to the Noise Problem of Open Offices

A new white paper from Allsteel investigates this and other workplace-specific challenges.

I admit it. I tend to overuse the phrase, “Just because we can, doesn’t mean we should.” So here I go again. I’d like to point out that we need to bring two issues together when it comes to getting things done:  We need to temper our ability to do our work digitally and in places that aren’t offices and…

If we love it, will it last? Lance Hosey’s Inspirational Book on Green Design

Lance Hosey’s new book, Shape of Green: Aesthetics, Ecology, and Design, asks how to make sustainability not just likeable but loveable.

If we love it, will it last? This is a question at the heart of architect Lance Hosey’s new book, Shape of Green: Aesthetics, Ecology, and Design (Island Press, 2012). Because the book is just out I want to offer you a quick peek, as Hosey starts talking about it; his first talk since the book launched this week was…

Can “Oyster-Tecture” Actually Save Our Cities?

Because bivalves are incredibly efficient water-filtrators, rehabilitating their populations could help protect coastal cities and communities.

Oyster-tecture is one of several emerging practices that are shifting the way we think about infrastructure. The old ideals behind public works projects were focused only on enhancing people’s lives. Oyster-tecture provides needed services to people while also fostering vibrant, healthy ecosystems. The result is a more affordable, resilient, longer-lasting underpinning that surpasses New Deal-style construction. The technique can be…

Applying the Occupy Model to Sustainability

A young architect has put forth a proposal for a Planetary Occupy Movement.

There’s something daunting about a speaking slot called “15 Minutes of Brilliance.” At the Living Future (un)conference, these speaking engagements took place before the keynotes each day, a nice way to give individual speakers a platform. But the “brilliance” and the (somewhat false) time limit give these sessions a sense that the person might spontaneously combust after she finishes. (Think…

In Illustrations, The Big Apple vs. the City of Lights

Vahram Muratyan creates delightful illustrations, depicting New York and Paris' most notable symbols side-by-side.

Sometimes they’re more alike than you think, Paris and New York. You just have to be looking, and it helps if you live in both cities, constantly, as does Vahram Muratyan. Growing up in Paris, Muratyan always dreamed of living in New York. These days his work keeps him straddling both the City of Lights and the Big Apple. In…

The New Barnes Foundation Building Is a “Rarefied Experience”

Like all great buildings, the Tod Williams and Billie Tsien–designed museum transports.

Photos courtesy Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects New York City’s Le Bernadin restaurant was the chic, Michelin-starred venue for a recent press luncheon held to announce the opening of the new Barnes Art Museum in Philadelphia. A narrow stairway off West 51st Street led up to a not very large room. Circular tables ringed with top-flight design journalists and editors were…

Nine Lives of Green

Recently at the Living Future event in Portland, Oregon, I had an opportunity to explore “lives of green” with eight other women working in the sustainable design space, as it is often called. We followed the Pecha Kucha format (my first time with the 20-seconds-for-each-of-20 slides). Barbra Batshalom, a Boston-based “recovering architect” talked about her path toward transforming organizations, to…

Q&A: Nina Rappaport

Vertical Urban Factory Exhibit, Photo by Christopher Hall After a six-month run in New York City, Vertical Urban Factory, curated by Nina Rappaport, opened on May 11th and runs through July 29th at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD). A longtime fan of the process of making things and the buildings that contain the manufacturing occupations, as well as…

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