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

The planned “Essex Crossing” complex by SHoP and Beyer Blinder Belle. Image Courtesy of SHoP Architects

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 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 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? 

A Country of Cities: A Manifesto for an Urban America

Vishaan Chakrabarti. Image © Tina Gao, Columbia University GSAPP

Last monday, Columbia University’s Avery Hall was buzzing.

The Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP) hosted a highly attended event that welcomed respected academics and professionals from architecture and real estate to what the dean, Mark Wigley, warned might take the form a a celebrity roast. Vishaan Chakrabarti, a partner at SHoP Architects and director of the Center for Urban Real Estate at Columbia, was on deck to deliver an abridged, more “urban version” of a longer on his new book, A Country of Cities: A Manifesto for an Urban America. Proceeding the twenty minute lecture, an “A-list” panel of architects and historians -  that included Kenneth Frampton, Gwendolyn Wright, Bernard Tschumi, Laurie Hawkinson and Reinhold Martin – lined up to discuss Chakrabarti’s work.

Watch TEDCity2.0: Dream me. Build me. Make me real.

Live Stream

Calling all urban innovators, organizers, stewards and builders: Today, September 20th, from 9am to 5pm EST, curators Chris Anderson, John Cary and Courtney Martin will kick off TEDCity2.0: Dream me. Build me. Make me real. The day-long event, which will be live-streamed for free, will share stories of urban ingenuity and interdependence from across the globe, while featuring an unexpected mix of over 20 speakers, including walkability expert , world renowned architectural photographer Iwan Baan, and several 2012 City 2.0 Award winners. View the event program for more details.

Fumihiko Maki Unveils New United Nations Tower

Courtesy of DNAinfoNY

Almost sixty years after Wallace K. Harrison was invited to design the United Nations Secretariat Building in New York City, plans have been unveiled for another UN skyscraper designed by Fumihiko Maki which would “consolidate currently scattered operations into a single structure that would rise on the western portion of the Robert Moses Playground, on First Avenue between East 41st and 42nd streets.”

Kickstarter Campaign to Activate Vacant Storefronts in New York City

‘Play’. Image Courtesy of Architecture Commons

In an attempt to activate a vacant storefront in New York’s , the miLES Storefront Transformer – a 6ft cube designed to “program any storefront” – is a versatile, movable set of furnishing and amenities designed by Architecture Commons. Seven individual pop-up interventions, curated by a collection of creative minds, would inhabit empty shops between November 4th and December 22nd 2013 if their Kickstarter campaign is successful.

BIG Designs Pier 6 Viewing Platform for Brooklyn’s Waterfront

Courtesy of

Following the news that Studio V Architecture has been commissioned to convert the 19th century Empire Stores, next to Bridge, into 380,000 square-feet of office, restaurant and commercial space, Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has unveiled designs for “a flowering meadow with seasonal grasses, a sprawling field and a triangular wooden viewing platform” close by.

Time-Lapse: One World Trade Center

On the twelfth anniversary of September 11th, we would like to share with you this incredible time-lapse capturing the progress of the Center between October 2004 and September 2013. The 1,776 foot tall skyscraper, which is expected to be the tallest in Western Hemisphere, topped out earlier this year and is slated for completion in 2014.

The Penn Station Proposals: Vanity Projects?

Courtesy of SHoP Architects

In this article in the New York Observer, Stephen Jacob Smith discusses the future of Penn Station, now that Madison Square Garden’s permit has been extended by just 10 years. Smith thinks that the grand redesigns of the station itself are pure vanity – considering the poor organization of the current station and the competing interests of the stakeholders involved – and proposes that there are better improvements to be had in unseen infrastructure improvements rather than show-stopping architecture. Read the full article here.

Brooklyn to Transform Canal Into “Sponge Park”

©

One of the United States’ most polluted bodies of is about to receive a much needed make-over: In early 2014, construction will begin on a pollution-preventing greenscape that will run alongside Brooklyn’s Gowanus Canal. The proposal, dubbed Sponge Park, was envisioned more than five years ago by Susannah Drake of dlandstudio and has just now “soaked up” enough funds to move forward.

The Bloomberg Years: Reshaping New York

Courtesy of NYTimes

Since Mayor Bloomberg took office in 2001, the fabric of City has been in constant flux. In just 12 years, Bloomberg has lead an effort to rezone 37 percent of the city to create opportunities for high-density growth, as well as aided the construction 40,000 new buildings and 450 miles of bike lanes. Putting these efforts in perspective, the Times has released the interactive feature “Reshaping New York” that compares statistics with drastic ‘before and after’ comparisons. Check it out and read our report on Bloomberg’s lasting affect on the Empire State here.

MoMA Releases First Storybook: “Young Frank, Architect”

Cover of Young Frank, Architect, published by The Museum of Modern Art

Inspiring builders of all ages, has released their first storybook, following the adventures of a young, City architect and his architect grandfather: Young Frank and Old Frank. The creative pair – with matching bow ties, straw boater hats and, of course, Le Corbusier-inspired glasses – optimistically views the world as an endless supply of inspiration and possibilities. Everything, from macaroni to old boxes, inspires them to create – especially after discovering the works of Frank Gehry and Frank Lloyd Wright at The Museum of Modern Art. Young Frank, Architect was written by the renowned children’s author and illustrator Frank Viva. More information can be found here on MoMA.

STUDIOKCA’s ‘Head in the Clouds’ Pavilion Opens in NYC

© Lesley Chang

Back in February of this year, the non-profit arts organization FIGMENT asked “What would an art pavilion made out of recycled materials and based around the idea of ‘The City of Dreams’ look like to you?.” Brooklyn-based  beat out over 200 other submissions in the competition with their Head in the Clouds pavilion, now open to the public on Governors Island in NYC.

BIG, OMA Shortlisted by HUD to “Rebuild by Design” Post-Sandy

© Governor’s Office / Tim Larsen

U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced ten shortlisted teams to compete in the multi-stage regional design competition “Rebuild by Design.” Each team will aim to “promote innovation by developing regionally-scalable but locally-contextual solutions that increase resilience in the region, and to implement selected proposals with both public and private funding.”

The 10 multidisciplinary, shortlisted teams are:

Midtown Financial Company / a + i architecture

© Magda Biernat

Architects: a + i architecture
Location: , NY
Architecture Project Team: Dag Folger, Michael Lehner, Carrie Gibbs, Elizabeth Fennell, Phil Ward, Alan Calixto
Area: 110,000 sqm
Photographs: Magda Biernat

M&M House / Stan Allen Architect

© Pablo Gerson

Architects: Stan Allen Architect
Location: , United States
Project Team: Giancarlo Valle, Marc McQuade, Chris Oliver
Year: 2012
Photographs: Pablo Gerson, Courtesy of Stan Allen Architect

New York Announces Plans to Build Brooklyn Bridge Beach

via NYDaily News

NYDaily News reports that the Council has allocated $7 million to redevelop a 11,000 square foot swath of forgotten land into a beautiful, sandy beach beneath the Brooklyn Bridge. Originally conceived as part of New York’s “Blueway” plan, the waterfront project will grant access to terraced seating, wading pools and fishing areas, along with a kayak launch and concession stand via tree-lined walkways. See what else the “Blueway” entails, here on ArchDaily.

AD Classics: Modern Architecture International Exhibition / Philip Johnson and Henry-Russell Hitchcock

Model of Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye from Modern Architecture: International [MoMA Exh. #15, February 9-March 23, 1932
“Modern Architecture: International Exhibition” is the title of an exhibition that took place in 1932 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. Curated by Philip Johnson and Henry-Russell Hitchcock, the exhibition introduced an emerging architectural style characterized by simplified geometry and a lack of ornamentation; known as  the “,” it was described by Johnson as “probably the first fundamentally original and widely distributed style since the Gothic.” The exhibition, along with an accompanying catalogue, laid the principles for the canon of Modern architecture.

Bloomberg’s Legacy: The Construction Boom of NYC

Freedom Tower; Courtesy of Flickr User Arturo Yee; Licensed via Creative Commons

City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s twelve years in office will leave an undeniable impression on the physical landscape of the city for future generations.  The new and revised policies of this administration have encouraged unprecedented growth of City and its outer boroughs in the years following 9/11.  According to a new series called The Bloomberg Years by WNYC, and this article by Matthew Schuerman, Bloomberg’s three consecutive terms have made New York City taller, more attractive and, in turn, more expensive.