The Hilda L. Solis Care First Village (HSCFV), a large-scale interim housing project providing a wide range of amenities for both the unhoused and those in transition, recently opened in Downtown Los Angeles.
Following a lengthy search, the California city of Riverside and its Parks, Recreation, and Community Services Department have selected Studio-MLA as the lead designer of the River-Side Gateway Project Suite, a string of nine sites along a seven-mile stretch of the Santa Ana River. Funded by the California Coastal Conservancy, the search committee sought a design team that could best revitalize the open spaces and trails along the northern edge of Riverside, the largest city in the Inland Empire region of California with a population of over 300,000.
It’s a rather unfortunate platitude that good design and government programs don’t mix. More than unfortunate, it’s also untrue, as a new initiative from the City of Los Angeles demonstrates.
The newly launched Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) Standard Plan Program offers homeowners 20 eye-catching, pre-approved designs for the increasingly popular typology, which many see as a viable alternative to costlier mid-rise apartment buildings. Administered by the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety (LADBS) in United States and featuring designs from firms including SO – IL and LA-Más, the program is a bid to fast-track permits for these humble, backyard homes—better known as ADUs—as well as making them “more accessible, more affordable, and more beautiful,” said L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti in a press statement.
This article was originally published on The Architect's Newspaper as "Architects apply the latest in fabrication, design, and visualization to age-old timber."
Every so often, the field of architecture is presented with what is hailed as the next “miracle building material.” Concrete enabled the expansion of the Roman Empire, steel densified cities to previously unthinkable heights, and plastic reconstituted the architectural interior and the building economy along with it.
But it would be reasonable to question why and how, in the 21st century, timber was accorded a miracle status on the tail-end of a timeline several millennia-long. Though its rough-hewn surface and the puzzle-like assembly it engenders might seem antithetical to the current global demand for exponential building development, it is timber’s durability, renewability, and capacity for sequestering carbon—rather than release it—that inspires the building industry to heavily invest in its future.