Cities

New Wadsworth Worthwhile

If a museum expansion were measured by its Bilbao effect alone, UN Studio’s design for the expansion of the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford, Conn., would register only a small blip on the iconographic radar screen. It doesn’t rise up from…

The Not-So-Loyal Opposition

Saturday’s [July 20, 2002] event at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York City was almost a case study in what the Lower Manhattan Development Corp., Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and developer Larry Silverstein face…

Who’s Listening to Whom

I arrived at the “Listening to the City” event at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York City on Saturday [July 20, 2002], armed with my notebook and my cynicism. I was anxious to see the reaction of the…

Double Dutch Summer

If you’re in search of a primer on the recent history of typography and magazine layouts, get yourself to the American Institute of Graphic Arts. Through August 23, the AIGA hosts “Roadshow: Dutch Graphic Design 1990-2000,” just one in a…

Renzo’s Charm Offensive

Renzo Piano was in San Francisco to unveil the schematic design for his newest project—and he poured on the charm as only the Italian architect can.

Tschumi Steps Down

On June 30, 2002 Bernard Tschumi, dean of Columbia’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation announced he will step down from his position next year. “Fifteen years is an architectural generation,” said Tschumi in a press release put out…

Lab Specimens

When the World Trade Center came down, architects were suddenly thrown into the public spotlight to offer insight, and many of their imaginations ran wild. In contrast, the Canadian Centre for Architecture’s “Laboratories,” on display until mid-September, tries to achieve…

Illuminating San Francisco

Metropolis was in San Francisco for Lightfair International 2002, the annual architectural and commercial lighting trade show, June 2-5 at the Moscone Convention Center. The conference is sponsored by the International Association of Lighting Designers and the Illuminating Engineering Society…

Tracks are Tracks?

At a recent event sponsored by the American Institute of Architect’s New York chapter, Robert Davidson, chief architect for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, uttered what I sincerely hope is not a prophetic line. “Tracks are…

The Forgotten Resident of Lower Manhattan

Residents from Chinatown and the Lower East Side held a rally on June 5th in Foley Square, protesting the city and federal government’s response to 9-11. They carried placards reading, “Rebuild NYC, Rebuild Our Lives” and “Health Care NOT Toxic…

Antique Modern

Modernist architecture enthusiasts are still reeling from the recent destruction of Richard Neutra’s Maslon House in Rancho Mirage, California. The demolition captures the central paradox of preserving modernist homes: even when designed by greats like William Lescaze, Albert Frey, or…

Taming the NYPL’s Lions

According to librarian Rodney Phillips, the most frequently asked question at the New York Public Library is, “Where are the books?” Patrons already intimidated by the Beaux Arts building and its stone lions can’t always figure out how to use…

MVRDV Wins NAi Prize

Dutch architects MVRDV won the 2002 NAi Prize for their Hageneiland housing project, the Netherlands Architecture Institute announced this month. The prize salutes the best buildings by Dutch architects who are younger than 40. While architects elsewhere often wait years…

Designing Blast Protection

A test explosion shockwave, expanding, then engulfing and destroying two structures, was shown on a video clip at a recent meeting of the Greater New York Construction User Council, a group of building owners and users of construction services focused…

Of Waves and Wood

Rem Koolhaas’s “Wave” floor at the new Prada store in New York’s Soho may have caused a giddy ripple in design circles, but according to environmentalists it’s a wave of destruction. The building’s ground floor—which undulates to create a combo…

Seven to Save

The Preservation League of New York State announced its third annual Seven to Save list for 2002 at a recent Municipal Art Society (MAS) press conference. Two New York City sites are on it: Eero Saarinen’s TWA terminal at JFK…

Moss Wins Queens Museum of Art Competition

Eric Owen Moss Architects of Culver City, CA, won the Queens Museum of Art (QMA), Queens, NY, design competition. The jury winnowed the 198 entrants down to five finalists in early September. Located in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, site of…

Looking Up at 55 Water Street

New York City is filled with privately owned public parks and plazas provided by real estate developers in exchange for permission to build taller skyscrapers. More a business tactic than a public service, these exchanges are often grudging concessions, the…

Food Sculpture in Boston

CANSTRUCTION is a national community service project sponsored by the Society of Design Administration. Designers create sculptures using non-perishable foods-principally cans-and the food is donated to local charities. In Boston, 19 sculptures have been on display since October 28 at…

Peddling a Fiction

How should New Yorkers greet the news that the United States Olympic Committee last week selected our city as the American candidate to host the 2012 summer games? With a great deal of skepticism, a sigh of relief upon realizing…