Point of View - Point of View October 2009

 

Letter from Baltimore: The Design Solution

In her monthly “Letter from Baltimore,” Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson writes about architecture, culture, and urbanism in a city more often associated with violent crime than with good design. Click here to read her previous posts. For more by Dickinson, visit her blog, Urban Palimpsest. As a part of the Baltimore Architecture Week held earlier this month, AIABaltimore invited me to…

Speed and Spectacle in the UAE

If oil money is the figurative blood of the UAE, dazzling architecture might be its skin. And if that metaphor seems a bit strained, it should make more sense once you’ve seen images of Asymptote’s new project in Abu Dhabi. The 500-room Yas Hotel, which sits alongside the city’s Formula 1 racing circuit, features 5,800 pivoting diamond-shaped glass panels–its epidermis,…

Graduate Programs in Sustainability Catching On

The City College of New York (CCNY) announced this afternoon that it will offer a new interdisciplinary master’s program called “Sustainability in the Urban Environment.” The 31-course program, which begins next spring, will incorporate architecture, engineering, and science into the curriculum, and will lead to a Master’s of Science in Sustainability. (Read more about it here.) Having noticed similar initiatives…

Fiberglass Fluidity

Sixty years in, Vladimir Kagan has found something new. Kagan, the furniture designer whose signature forms–organic and sinuous–made him an important figure in midcentury Modernism, this month unveils a new line of furniture built entirely in fiberglass. It’s the first time the designer’s worked in the medium, but, according to Kagan, the effort fits an aesthetic he’s played with throughout…

Architects Finally Get Their Own Social Networking Site

Architizer, a new professional and social networking site for the architecture world, launched today. The brainchild of a group of young architects, Web designers, and curators, the site lets users create personal and firm profiles, upload project photos, announce exhibitions and events, and browse jobs and competitions. It’s too early to tell how useful Architizer will actually be–that will depend…

Q&A: Mobility on Demand—and in the Near Future

A rendering of the CityCar on the streets of Manhattan. Image: William Lark, Jr., Smart Cities When I first saw computer renderings of the MIT Smart Cities research group’s CityCar a few years ago, I thought I was looking at a pie-in-the-sky vision of a distant (and idealized) future. This compact, stackable electric vehicle is supposed to dock at charging…

Building Bridges

Everyone knows that Amsterdam is a city of bridges, but lately some other Scandinavian Northern European cities have been getting in on the action too. Here are three noteworthy bridges recently built (or announced) in the region: . Butterfly Bridge, Copenhagen Dietmar Feichtinger Architectes The Paris- and Vienna-based firm recently won a competition to build two new bridges in the…

Solarama!

Photo: Stefano Paltera/courtesy the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon Keeping tabs on the Solar Decathlon is a bit like watching a slow-moving golf tournament. Over two weeks, 20 college and university teams from around the world compete to see who has created the best residential prototype for a solar-powered home. The houses—installed in a Solar Village on the National…

The Metropolis Minute: Productsphere

. . . . Each month, Productsphere brings design professionals a wealth of innovative and inventive new products, organized around a central theme of particular relevance to the industry. After the jump, Metropolis’s editorial director, Paul Makovsky, talks about his Productsphere column in the October issue of the magazine. Whether you’re speccing products for a new interior or just trying…

Accessibility Watch

. Following my recent post on the clash between historic preservation and universal design, we’ve decided to undertake a regular blog column on accessibility in buildings and cities. We hope to discuss examples from all over the world, but at first our focus will be where we are, New York City. I walk with a cane or, recently, with forearm…

Parking Outside the Box

The parking garage is the Rodney Dangerfield of building types, the troubled snag in the urban fabric, the Gordian Knot of design. But for all the ugly-red-haired-stepchild car parks of the world and the many generic, bunker-like auto warehouses, there are also stunning examples of man-and-machine triumph that incorporate both function and aesthetics. And they are about to be celebrated…

Comments

comments