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Las Vegas: The Latest Architecture and News

ARIA Resort and Casino / Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects

16:00 - 12 February, 2019
ARIA Resort and Casino / Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects, © Jeff Goldberg
© Jeff Goldberg

© Jeff Goldberg © Jeff Goldberg © Jeff Goldberg © Jeff Goldberg + 14

Love in Las Vegas: 99% Invisible Illuminates Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown’s Postmodern Romance

08:00 - 24 May, 2018
Love in Las Vegas: 99% Invisible Illuminates Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown’s Postmodern Romance, © <a href='https://www.publicdomainpictures.net/en/view-image.php?image=223416&picture=las-vegas-at-night'>Public Domain user Jean Beaufort</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/'>CC0 Public Domain</a>
© Public Domain user Jean Beaufort licensed under CC0 Public Domain

Which building is better, the duck or the ornamented shed? More importantly, what kind of architecture does the average American prefer? In their landmark 1972 publication Learning From Las Vegas, Denise Scott Brown and Robert Venturi probed these questions by turning their back on paternalistic modernism in favor of the glowing, overtly kitsch, and symbolic Mecca of the Las Vegas strip. From a chance encounter during a meeting in the Library of Fine Arts at the University of Pennsylvania and shared trips to the strip to critically shaping a new generation of architects, discover the hidden details of the romance and city that defined postmodernism in this latest episode from 99% Invisible.

Madison Square Garden Unveils Images of Spherical Events Venue in London

12:00 - 29 March, 2018
Madison Square Garden Unveils Images of Spherical Events Venue in London, Courtesy of The Madison Square Garden Company
Courtesy of The Madison Square Garden Company

The Madison Square Garden Company has unveiled images of its proposed MSG Sphere in London, a next-generation venue seeking to “redefine live entertainment” through an array of technology geared towards transformative, immersive connections between artists and audiences.

To accompany the London scheme, an MSG Sphere will also be located in Las Vegas. Both are to be designed by Populous, a global firm responsible for a large number of stadia and arenas across the globe.

Courtesy of The Madison Square Garden Company Courtesy of The Madison Square Garden Company Courtesy of The Madison Square Garden Company Courtesy of The Madison Square Garden Company + 8

Madison Square Garden Unveils Plans for Spherical Event Venues in London and Las Vegas

16:20 - 14 February, 2018
Madison Square Garden Unveils Plans for Spherical Event Venues in London and Las Vegas, © Madison Square Garden Company
© Madison Square Garden Company

The Madison Square Garden Company, the eponymous group behind New York City’s iconic concert and events venue, has revealed plans to building two new arenas on opposite sides of the world that will both be shaped like giant spheres.

To be branded as MSG Spheres, the venues will be located in Las Vegas and in London, and will be designed by Populous, the Kansas City-based firm responsible for a large number of stadia and arenas across the globe.

© Madison Square Garden Company © Madison Square Garden Company © Madison Square Garden Company © Madison Square Garden Company + 5

"See You in Court!": 9 of Architecture’s Nastiest Lawsuits

09:30 - 8 May, 2017
© <a href=‘https://www.flickr.com/photos/diversey/16868722144/'>Flickr user diversey</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en'>CC BY-2.0</a>
© Flickr user diversey licensed under CC BY-2.0

What did Pritzker Prize winner Frank Gehry get when he designed the Stata Center, an exuberantly whimsical academic complex for MIT? A very large check, plus a major lawsuit, alleging negligence and breach of contract due to rampant leaks, mold, cracks, drainage problems and sliding ice. Sometimes the most inspired designs can go awry. And when they do, some clients lawyer up. Here are 9 fascinating examples.

Full-Sized Hyperloop One Test Track Nears Completion

14:05 - 9 March, 2017
Full-Sized Hyperloop One Test Track Nears Completion, © Hyperloop One
© Hyperloop One

Hyperloop One has revealed images of its full-scale test track, called the DevLoop, for the first time as it prepares for its first public trial later this year. The 500-meter-long (1,640 feet) DevLoop is located in the flat terrain of the Nevada desert, just 30 minutes from Las Vegas. In its final form, the track will extend two miles between launching and receiving points.

© Hyperloop One © Hyperloop One Hyperloop One's concept for a transportation system in the UAE. Image © Hyperloop One Hyperloop One's concept for a transportation system in the UAE. Image © Hyperloop One + 11

Google Timelapse Shows the Rapid Expansion of the World’s Cities over 32 Years

12:00 - 2 December, 2016

Google Earth has released an update to its Timelapse feature, giving viewers a better look at the rapid expansion of the world’s urban areas between 1984 and 2016.

Originally released in 2013 in partnership with TIME and NASA, the update adds in four more years of data, as well as petabytes of imagery data from two new satellites, Landsat 8 and Sentinel-2, to provide clearer views of new developments and the recent effects of climate change on our natural environments.

The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada Mobility Training Center / Gensler

12:00 - 27 August, 2016
The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada Mobility Training Center / Gensler, Courtesy of Gensler
Courtesy of Gensler

Courtesy of Gensler Courtesy of Gensler Courtesy of Gensler Courtesy of Gensler + 14

Light Matters: A Flash Back to the Glittering Age of Las Vegas at the Neon Museum

09:30 - 23 June, 2015
Light Matters: A Flash Back to the Glittering Age of Las Vegas at the Neon Museum, Fremont Street at night in Downtown Las Vegas in 1952. Image © Edward N. Edstrom (Public Domain via Wikimedia)
Fremont Street at night in Downtown Las Vegas in 1952. Image © Edward N. Edstrom (Public Domain via Wikimedia)

Thanks to the increasing availability of giant LED screens, the Golden Age of Neon has quietly faded in Las Vegas. For decades casinos defined their visual identity with colorful neon signs and competed for the most innovative signage. But with casinos closing, being refurbished and the arrival of new lighting technology a lot of neon signs were replaced, and for many years the Young Electric Sign Company kept the old neon signs in their "boneyard" for storage and recycling. Fortunately historic preservation groups rescued these signs. With support of the arts council The Neon Museum was born to save neon treasures and to educate the public.

Read on to explore Las Vegas' luminous landmarks and The Neon Museum.

Neon Museum featuring more than 150 unrestored signs, Las Vegas. Image © Neon Museum, www.neonmuseum.org Front exterior of the Mint Hotel, Las Vegas / Nevada, circa 1957. Image © University of Nevada, Las Vegas University Libraries. Young Electric Sign Company (YESCO) Collection. Colour-changing neon sign on the façade of the Stardust Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, 1969. Image © University of Nevada, Las Vegas University Libraries. Young Electric Sign Company (YESCO) Collection. La Concha Motel lobby building, designed in 1961, was rescued from demolition and moved to its current location in 2007 to serve as the Neon Museum’s visitors’ center. Architect: Paul Williams. Las Vegas. Image © Neon Museum, www.neonmuseum.org + 7

Las Vegas vs The Landscape: Photographer Michael Light Exposes the Terraforming of the American Dream

09:30 - 16 March, 2015
“Barcelona” Homes and the Edge of Lake Mead Recreation Area, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011. Image © Michael Light, Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain
“Barcelona” Homes and the Edge of Lake Mead Recreation Area, Lake Las Vegas, Henderson, NV; 2011. Image © Michael Light, Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain

“Nestled into the desert landscape that defines Nevada’s visage,
Ascaya feels as if it were shaped by the elements.
[...]
Where stone rises up to meet the sky, there is a place called Ascaya.”
- The Ascaya promotional website

Not quite, according to Michael Light’s soon-to-be released book, Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain. Covering the advance of suburban Nevada into the desert, this two-part book looks at Lake Las Vegas, a then-abandoned victim of the 2008 real estate crash which has since emerged from the other side of bankruptcy, and nearby Ascaya, a high end housing estate that is still in the process of being carved into Black Mountain. Light’s photography doesn’t so much question the developers’ summary as it does, say, blast it, scar it, terrace it and then build a large housing development on the remains. Featuring beautifully composed aerial shots of the construction sites and golf courses covering the desert, the book is a clear condemnation of the destructive and unsustainable development in Nevada. Much more than that, though, Light is highlighting a wider philosophy behind developments like Ascaya and Lake Las Vegas that fundamentally fail to connect American society with the American landscape in a non-destructive way.

Sun City” Hiking Trail Looking Southeast, Unbuilt “Ascaya” Lots and Black Mountain Beyond, Henderson, NV; 2010. Image © Michael Light, Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain Unbuilt “Ascaya” Lots and Cul De Sac Looking West, Henderson, NV; 2011. Image © Michael Light, Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain Gated “Monaco” Lake Las Vegas Homes, Bankrupt Ponte Vecchio Beyond, Henderson, NV; 2010. Image © Michael Light, Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain “Roma Hills” Homes And Foreclosed “Obsidian Mountain” Development, “Ascaya” Lots Beyond, Looking South, Henderson, NV; 2012. Image © Michael Light, Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain + 13

Vincent Laforet's "Sin City" Shows Vegas from 10,800 Feet

01:00 - 10 February, 2015
Vincent Laforet's "Sin City" Shows Vegas from 10,800 Feet, © Vincent Laforet
© Vincent Laforet

Vincent Laforet is at it again, this time photographing Nevada’s Sin City from an elevation of 10,800 feet (8,799 feet above the city). Part two of Laforet’s dizzying series of city aerials, the Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer was drawn to desert city of Las Vegas because of its “island” effect.

“Just like the island of Manhattan that started this series, Vegas is an "Island of Light" in the middle of nothingness… A sea of black with an amazing source of light emanating from Vegas and its infamous strip… You can almost see the electricity running through it.”

A collection of "Sin City" images, after the break. 

M-Rad Proposes Live-Work Towers to Revitalize Downtown Las Vegas

00:00 - 24 December, 2014
M-Rad Proposes Live-Work Towers to Revitalize Downtown Las Vegas, © M-Rad
© M-Rad

The idea of mixed-use residential buildings is rapidly gaining popularity in urban America. The concept of being able to work within walking distance of where you live is both convenient and economical. Matthew Rosenberg, design director of M-Rad Studio, recognizes this, and has proposed a dramatic live/work design for the Downtown Project of Las Vegas, Nevada. Titled Inter-Act Residence, the building (or, potentially, series of buildings) would incorporate modular offices and apartments, strategically arranged for interaction between residents.

Foster + Partners’ Unfinished Vegas Tower Approved for Demolition

00:00 - 9 May, 2014
 Foster + Partners’ Unfinished Vegas Tower Approved for Demolition , Harmon Hotel via <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/'>Wikimedia</a> Commons
Harmon Hotel via Wikimedia Commons

A court approved ruling has sealed the fate of Foster + Partners’ half-built Harmon Hotel in Las Vegas. Unfinished due to structural defects, the 27-story glass tower was once envisioned to be the staple of the $8.5 billion CityCenter entertainment complex. However, since problems arose in 2008, the stunted hotel and casino has instead served as a glorified billboard.

Though it has yet to be determined who will be blamed for the faulty construction, owner MGM Resorts International has been granted permission to dismantle the blue glass building floor-by-floor at a cost of $11.5 million. 

Tresarca / assemblageSTUDIO

00:00 - 26 February, 2014
Tresarca / assemblageSTUDIO, © Bill Timmerman
© Bill Timmerman

© Zack Hussain © Zack Hussain © Bill Timmerman © Bill Timmerman + 35

  • Architects

  • Location

    Las Vegas, United States
  • Category

  • Design Team

    Eric Strain, Drew Gregory, Clemente Cicoria, CJ Hoogland, Tony Diaz, Leon Cifala, Renee Smith, Rachel Tarr
  • Area

    8000.0 ft2
  • Project Year

    2011
  • Photographs

Solar Decathlon 2013: Team Las Vegas Places Second, Wins “Market Appeal”

01:00 - 15 October, 2013
© Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon
© Jason Flakes/U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon

Text description provided by the architects. Placing second overall, just a few points behind the winning 2013 Solar Decathlon team, students from the University of Nevada Las Vegas (Team Las Vegas) have won the “Market Appeal” contest at the Department of Energy’s (DOE) sixth solar-home competition. Known as “DesertSol”, the project was lauded for its “livability, marketability and constructability” as well as its “appeal within the housing market of the target client chosen by team.” It is designed to be a self-reliant, energy-efficient second home for upper-middle income Americans who pursue active lifestyles in the sparsely populated Mojave Desert. Read on for the team’s project description.

Google Timelapse Reveals Effects of Rapid Urbanization

00:00 - 18 August, 2013
Google Timelapse Reveals Effects of Rapid Urbanization, This satellite image of Bolivia shows dramatic deforestation in the Amazon Basin. Courtesy of Google.
This satellite image of Bolivia shows dramatic deforestation in the Amazon Basin. Courtesy of Google.

NASA, in cooperation with TIME and Google, has unveiled startling timelapse images of Earth from orbit collected by NASA's Landsat program since 1984. This program, created not for spycraft but for monitoring the way in which humans are rapidly altering the surface of the planet, consists of eight satellites that have collected millions of pictures in the course of two generations. When sifted through, cleaned up and stitched together, these pictures come together to create a high-definition slideshow that reveals some of the drastic changes our planet is undergoing - most notably through widespread urbanization.

J2 Residence / assemblageSTUDIO

01:00 - 17 June, 2013
© Bill Timmerman
© Bill Timmerman

© Bill Timmerman © Bill Timmerman © Bill Timmerman © Bill Timmerman + 27

Zappos to Build Intentionally Inconvenient Office in Las Vegas

01:00 - 28 March, 2013
Zappos to Build Intentionally Inconvenient Office in Las Vegas, Zappos is moving into Las Vegas' old City Hall building, that circular white building on the right. Image © Aimee Groth, Business Insider
Zappos is moving into Las Vegas' old City Hall building, that circular white building on the right. Image © Aimee Groth, Business Insider

Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh has recently invested $350 million dollars of his own money into downtown Las Vegas, where the new Zappos' headquarters will soon call its home. Working in the vein of companies like Google and Apple, Hsieh and the head developer of the new campus, Zach Ware, have worked together on making a workspace environment in which creativity - and, consequently, inconvenience - is built into the design itself:

"'Our goal is not to create an office space that you take photos of and you say 'Wow, that's beautiful,'' says Ware. 'We're incredibly function-oriented.' Zappos' core focus is on company culture and the relationships between employees. To enhance that, as odd as it sounds, parts of the office are deliberately inconvenient."

Read Max Nisen's article on Zappos' "inconvenient," new headquarters after the break...