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Images Released of Beyer Blinder Belle-Designed U.S. Diplomacy Center

The Washington Post has published renderings of the new U.S. Diplomacy Center currently under construction at the State Department in Washington DC. "A shimmering pavilion," as architecture critic Philip Kennicott describes, the new center will serve as a welcoming public entrance to the Department of State's headquarters and be the nation's first museum and education center devoted entirely to the "history, practice and challenges of US Diplomacy. 

Designed by architect Hany Hassan of Beyer Blinder Belle, the glass pavilion will house a museum and an underground cafe, bookstore and event space, providing a new destination just two blocks from the National Mall. 

Grimshaw to Masterplan Washington DC's Union Station

Grimshaw Architects has been asked to collaborate with New York-based Beyer Blinder Belle on a $10 billion masterplan that will modernize Washington DC's 1913 Beaux Arts Union Station. Along with the potential to triple passenger capacity, the plan aims to make the station more accessible and efficient, while integrate a new three-million-square-foot, mixed-use development by Amtrak and Akridge over its rail tracks. 

"Washington DC deserves a station that serves the region on a practical level whilst celebrating the gateway to the nation’s capital," said Grimshaw partner Vincent Chang.

Bloomberg to Announce Mega-Redevelopment of NYC's Lower East Side

After decades of contention between residents and politicians, the Bloomberg administration will announce on Wednesday plans of constructing a six-acre complex by SHoP and Beyer Blinder Belle Architects over a ten year period. Nine vacant lots in New York City's Lower East Side will be erected into a mega-development of retail, office, entertainment, cultural and housing units. The complex will be located in rapidly gentrifying neighborhood, once home to working-class Italians, Jews, Puerto Ricans and Ukrainians, and has struggled to preserve affordable housing against an encroaching luxury market. In response, developers have collaborated with local community groups agreeing that half of the projected 1,000 apartments will be for low-, moderate-, and middle-income families. 

However, is this enough to sustain a balance of varying incomes? 

Cooper-Hewitt selects DS+R to help with Expansion

Back Garden © Rob Corder
Back Garden © Rob Corder

New York City-based Diller Scofidio + Renfro has been chosen to design the gallery and visitor experience at the historic Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum – the only museum in the United States that is exclusively devoted to historic and contemporary design. The New York City landmark is currently under undergoing an extensive, $64 million transformation that will expand gallery space by sixty-percent. The new environment will be laced with interactive elements in which Local Projects will help integrate into the gallery space as they have been selected as participatory media designer. The contemporary vision of the re:design aims to become a modern exemplar for museum design, while still preserving the historic Carnegie mansion. The renovation is led by Gluckman Mayner Architects and Beyer Blinder Belle. It will achieve LEED certification and is scheduled to be complete by 2014. “It is because of their keen abilities to translate ideas and concepts into boundary-stretching design that Cooper-Hewitt selected DS+R and Local Projects as the ideal partners to help re-envision the design of its gallery, visitor and participatory digital experiences,” explained Bill Moggridge, director of the museum.