Southbank Scheme Likely to Be Abandoned

© Miller Hare

The Southbank Centre has announced that it is delaying its planning application once again. The decision has been prompted by comments from London Mayor Boris Johnson, who last month opined that the skate park should remain in its current location. An official statement from the said: “it is far from clear how the scheme might now proceed without exposing to unacceptable levels of financial risk but it has committed to a final three-month search.”

However, despite the three-month extension, Chairman Rick Haythornthwaite has all but admitted defeat, saying “we are under no illusions [...] we don’t yet see how we will make it work.”

Read on for more about the decision

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Sir Terry Farrell on UK Architecture & the “Urbi-Cultural Revolution”

Beijing South Station / . Image © Fu Xing

In this intriguing and often insightful two-part interview with Section D, Monocle‘s weekly design radio show, Sir Terry Farrell discusses at length the findings of his review into UK architecture as well as his views on the current state of architecture in the UK and the world. Looking to the future of the profession, Farrell says he sees architects as one of the key contributors to the world’s social future: ”We live in what we’ve built, we’re an urban-building creature… I call it the urbi-cultural revolution.”

Read more about the interview, and listen to both parts of the interview, after the break

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A McDonald’s Controversy Raises Debate on Designing for the Elderly

© Flickr CC User symmetry_mind

In an article for the New York Times, Michael Kimmelman gets to the bottom of an unusual local dispute: a McDonald’s in Queens, New York is kicking out groups of elderly Koreans who are out-staying their 20-minute welcome (and who have no access to community spaces nearby). The story raises an important question: how can we design our with elder populations in mind (a generation on track to out-number all others in the next few years)? You can read this poignant tale in full here.

The Living Wins P.S.1 with Compostable Brick Tower

Courtesy of The Living

The Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 has selected ”Hy-Fi,” a “circular tower of organic and reflective bricks” designed by The Living (David Benjamin), as the winner of the 15th annual Young Architects Program () in New York. An exemplar of the cradle-to-cradle philosophy, the temporary installation will be built entirely from organic material via a new method of bio-design.

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Grimshaw Selected to Redevelop Ireland’s Most Prestigious Racecourse

©

The Irish Turf Club has selected Grimshaw, alongside collaborators Newenham Mulligan & Associates (NMA), amongst 100 other leading practices to envision a concept design for the modernization of ’s most prestigious thoroughbred race course.

Embedded within County Kildare’s open plains, the historic Curragh Racecourse is need of a masterplan that preserves the site, upgrades facilities and respects the surrounding landscape. Grimshaw’s winning proposal promises to satisfy these requests, in addition to constructing a new grandstand that retains the “intimate and distinctive character” of the existing grounds.

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Four Practices Re-Envision Parking in Long Island Downtowns

Parks and Rides. Image © and the Long Island Index

Long Island’s downtowns have more than 4,000 acres of surface area dedicated to lots. That’s roughly 6.5 square miles of prime real estate, a phenomenon quite common in most American cities. When necessary, these lots are often exchanged for a standard “set of concrete shelves” that share little to no connection with their surroundings. This leads to the question, why must parking garages be so monofunctional and, well, ugly?

To help solve this nationwide issue, the Long Island Index challenged four leading architectural firms to envision a more innovative way to free up surface lot space in four Long Island communities.

See what they came up with, after the break…

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Six Firms Named 2014′s “New Practices New York”

Haffenden House / PARA-Project

The American Institute of America’s Chapter (AIANY) has selected six young, and “pioneering” firms as the winners of the 2014 New Practices New York portfolio competition. The award is designed “to recognize and promote” emerging practices that are less than a decade old and based within the five boroughs of New York City. As a result, each winner will be in an exhibition at the Center for Architecture from October 1, through January 15, 2015.

Without further ado, the 2014 New Practices New York winners are:

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Designing Security into Schools: A Special Report

A rendering of the New Utøya Project a redesign of Utøya Island in Norway – the location of a 2011 massacre. Image Courtesy of Fantastic Norway

When it comes to designing schools, security is always a big issue. This fact was thrown into sharp focus in December of 2012 after the Sandy Hook Tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut. Last year, we featured an article discussing how design can deal with tragedy – both in order to prevent it and how to deal with the aftermath. Now, a report by Building Design and Construction investigates the measures that could prevent dangerous incidents. While they admit “it’s impossible to stop an armed madman who is hell-bent on killing”, the report has a number of simple and sensible recommendations which aid in preventing and responding to a threat. You can read the report here.

Neri Oxman Wins 2014 Vilcek Prize in Design

Rapid Craft, designed by .

As an immigrant “who has made lasting contributions to American society through extraordinary achievements in biomedical research and the arts and humanities,” Israeli-born designer and architect Neri Oxman has been selected as the 2014 Vilcek Prize in Design’s recipient.

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Adobe Photoshop Becomes a Tool for 3D Printing

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has unveiled a major update to CC (Creative Cloud) with the hope that a “radically simplified 3D printing process” will make their software the “go-to tool for anyone who wants to print a 3D model.” Their new software allows for designers to create a model from scratch or refine an existing design leading to perfect print ready 3D models. Since one of the most common problems with 3D printing is the human errors in virtual modeling, includes automatic mesh repair and will insert a support structure if necessary to ensure that the model will print reliably and without faults.

You can find out more about Adobe Photoshop and 3D Printing here. This update to Photoshop is already available for those who are subscribed to Adobe’s Creative Cloud.

Frank Gehry Chosen to Design Berlin’s Tallest Tower

© , Courtesy of Hines

Gehry Partners has been selected over David Chipperfield, Adjaye Associates and seven other practices in an invited competition for a 300-unit residential tower in Berlin. The winning proposal, deemed “the most compelling” by jury for its rotating stacks of sculptural, stone-clad cubes that rise up to 150 meters, is expected to be Berlin’s tallest skyscraper and ’s tallest residential tower.

“Gehry’s design is strong in visual expression and introduces an unusually eccentric, new pattern for this location. Nevertheless, the façade radiates agreeable tranquility. In addition, the design blends well with the neighborhood and conveys all aspects of metropolitan living,” commented Regula Lüscher, Senate Building Director.

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The New York City Cantilever: If You Can’t Go Up, Go Out

35XV Residences. Image Courtesy of FXFOWLE

City’s notoriously space-hungry market is converting the cantilever – perhaps made most famous in Frank Lloyd Wright’s floating Fallingwater residence of 1935 – from a mere move of architectural acrobatics to a profit-generating design feature. Driven by a “more is more” mantra, developers and architects are using cantilevers to extend the reach of a building, creating unique vistas and extended floor space in a market in which both are priced at sky-high premiums.

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Happy Birthday Alvar Aalto

© Nico Saieh

Alvar Aalto, born February 3,1898, would have turned 116 years old today. Known for his humanistic approach to modernism, Aalto was concerned about creating a total work of art. He did not simply design buildings but also paid close attention to their interior features, including furniture, lamps, and glassware design.

His architectural style began with Nordic Classicism and moved to International Style Modernism, and eventually evolved into a more synthetic and personal Modernism. He was one of the first and most influential architects of the Scandinavian modern movement. Aalto remains one of the greatest names in modern architecture.

To celebrate Aalto’s birth, we invite you to look back at his impressive collection of works:

Refugee Housing Unit Selected as Finalist for World Design Impact Prize

RHU via World Design Impact

An IKEA prototype for a modular “Refugee Housing Unit” has been selected as one of three finalists for the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design’s (Icsid) World Design Impact Prize 2014. The pilot project was lauded for providing a “temporary shelter in which facilitates ‘a feeling of normality’ for families living in refugee camps.” The project will be measured against a “BioLite HomeStove” and “ABC Syringe” before an overall prize winner is announced. You can learn more about the unit here and preview the competing innovations here.

In “Her,” A Hopeful Vision for LA’s Future

LA’s Future Subway System, as depicted in Spike Jonze’s “Her”. Image © Geoff McFetridge and Untitled Rick Howard Company LLC, via The Atlantic

In his review of Spike Jonze’s movie “Her”, LA Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne explains a rather comforting aspect of the movie: instead of the dystopia that usually characterizes films set in the future, “Her” is set in a future version of LA which is more dense, has better public transport (with a subway map with a story all of its own) and has managed to overcome its dependence on the car. No wonder this film has touched a chord with architects and urban designers. Read the full review here.

Call for Proposals: MANIFEST, Issue No. 2, “Kingdoms of God”

MANIFEST, an annual independent print journal on American architecture and urbanism, is requesting text, project, and photographic proposals for its second issue entitled, “Kingdoms of God.” Edited by Anthony Acciavatti, Justin Fowler, and Dan Handel, and supported in part by the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, was founded to initiate a critical conversation about the state of American architecture, its , and its hinterland.

Issue 2 of MANIFEST takes up the issue of architecture and religion in the Americas. How does one mark the other? What are the spatial results of the impulse toward congregation and the individual desire to find a direct link to something beyond one’s self? How do religious institutions impact the politics of the built environment? How does architecture give face or meaning to religion? How does religion, however we might understand it, shape the formation of American landscapes and push back against regimes of national sovereignty, neoliberal economics, and cultural secularism? What is its architecture?

Submission requirements after the break.

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Bricks Grown From Bacteria

Courtesy of bioMason

A unique start-up company have developed a method of growing bricks from nothing more than bacteria and naturally abundant materials. Having recently won first place in the Cradle to Cradle Product Innovation ChallengebioMason has developed a method of growing materials by employing microorganisms. Arguing that the four traditional building materials – concrete, glass, steel and wood – both contain a significant level of embodied energy and heavily rely on limited natural resources, their answer is in high strength natural biological cements (such as coral) that can be used “without negative impacts to the surrounding environment.”

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Crone Partners Rethink the Community Center in Rhodes

Overview. Image Courtesy of Crone Partners

Australian practice Crone Partners has recently won a competition to design a new community precinct in , New South Wales. Starting with the intention to rethink the traditional community building and civic space typology, Crone Partner’s winning design features clusters of spaces with programs subdividing by size and demands. In moving away from traditional public buildings, which are ”characterised by [their] scale, elaborate and sometimes extravagant aesthetic”, their proposal was no longer “constrained by a singular form”.

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