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It’s Time to Be Honest About the Impending Costs of Climate Change

This article was originally published on Common Edge.

The passage of the Biden Administration’s climate change package, the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act,” has predictably split along partisan lines, with Republicans characterizing the bill as an act of reckless government spending, certain to raise taxes and fuel further inflation. But does this act really represent reckless spending? The legislation authorizes $430 billion in spending, the bulk of which—more than $300 billion—is earmarked for tax credits; other spending, and initiatives aimed at stimulating the clean energy economy; and reducing carbon emissions. (The bill also allows Medicare to negotiate prices with drug companies for certain expensive drugs.) The bill is funded in part by a 15% minimum tax on large corporations and an excise tax on companies that repurchase shares of their own stock. Given the scope of the problem, and the escalating future costs of climate inaction, this legislation is an exceedingly modest, but very necessary, first step.

Mapping Improvisation: The Role of Call and Response in Urban Planning

Mapping Improvisation: The Role of Call and Response in Urban Planning - Featured Image
Congo Square, E.W. Kemble. Image

This article was originally published on Common Edge.

New Orleans was designed by its early settlers in 1721 as a Cartesian grid. You know it as the famous French Quarter or Vieux Carré. Such grids are named for the Cartesian coordinate system we learned to use in algebra or geometry class, perpendicular X and Y axes, used to measure units of distance on a plane. The invention of René Descartes (1596–1650), these grids reflect his rationalism, the view that reason, not embodied or empirical experience, is the only source and certain test of knowledge. William Penn used a similar grid in 1682 in selling Philadelphia as an urban paradise where industry would thrive in the newly settled wilderness. And just as the massive buildings of Italian Rationalist (i.e., Fascist) architecture express authoritarian control, so, too, Cartesian grids implicitly say: Someone is in charge here. We’ve got this. Trust us.

Trahan Architects Breaks Ground on New Chapel for Loyola University in New Orleans

Trahan Architects broke ground on the new Chapel of St. Ignatius and Gayle and Tom Benson Jesuit Center at the Loyola University in New Orleans. The new spiritual site and the community gathering space draw on elements of the Jesuit tradition, central to the University's heritage. Through the circular design, the light-filled interior space and the predominance of natural materials, Trahan Architects creates a space of universal spirituality at the heart of the campus.

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In Transit: Large-Scale Road Infrastructures Seen from Above

We live in a tangled web of flows – of capital, information, technology, images, structures, in constant momentum dominating all aspects of our lives. The large-scale road infrastructures shown here are products of this powerful desire for movement, which for many years was also synonymous with development, as portrayed by the famous Goethean character Faust in his endless quest for a (false) sense of progress.

From these tangles of concrete and steel, at multiple levels and in different directions, emerges a geometrically organized chaos that tears the urban fabrics in a relentless effort to prioritize the flows with the fewest obstacles and the highest capacity possible.

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“Make It Right” Goes Wrong in New Orleans

Some celebrate the failures of "Make It Right", Brad Pitt’s patronage in New Orleans. After Hurricane Katrina wrecked New Orleans in 2005, celebrated architects like Frank Gehry, David Adjaye and Thom Mayne created art for a foundation set up by Pitt. A local architect, John C. Williams was hired to turn designs from those starchitects into buildings with a directive to use the best sustainable materials available.

David Adjaye-Designed House Built by Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation to Be Torn Down

A small but nevertheless significant building designed by David Adjaye in the Lower Ninth Ward for Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation will be demolished because it has been deemed unsafe.

The city of New Orleans posted a “Notice of Emergency Demolition” on the vacant house at 1826 Reynes Street, saying that it is “in imminent danger of collapse and/or threat to life,” according to NOLA.com.

Jonathan Tate Talks Hurricanes, Homes, and Hotels

Architect Jonathan Tate was living and working in Memphis, Tennessee, when Hurricane Katrina ensnared New Orleans in 2005. Instinctively drawn to the Big Easy, he later moved there for the opportunity to observe the reconstruction effort and investigate architecture’s role in it.

The Schoolhouse / Rome Office

The Schoolhouse / Rome Office - Exterior Photography, Renovation, Facade, Door, ArchThe Schoolhouse / Rome Office - Interior Photography, Renovation, Kitchen, Chair, Countertop, TableThe Schoolhouse / Rome Office - Interior Photography, Renovation, Door, Handrail, StairsThe Schoolhouse / Rome Office - Interior Photography, Renovation, Kitchen, Handrail, Beam, Stairs, Table, Chair, LightingThe Schoolhouse / Rome Office - More Images+ 20

Moody Pavilions / Trahan Architects

Moody Pavilions / Trahan Architects - Exterior Photography, Pavilion, GardenMoody Pavilions / Trahan Architects - Exterior Photography, Pavilion, Garden, Fence, FacadeMoody Pavilions / Trahan Architects - Interior Photography, Pavilion, Facade, Table, ChairMoody Pavilions / Trahan Architects - Exterior Photography, Pavilion, Garden, FacadeMoody Pavilions / Trahan Architects - More Images+ 7

Bienville House / Nathan Fell Architecture

Bienville House / Nathan Fell Architecture - Housing, Door, Facade, Stairs
© Justin Cordova

Bienville House / Nathan Fell Architecture - Housing, Deck, Facade, Beam, Table, ChairBienville House / Nathan Fell Architecture - Housing, Patio, Facade, Table, ChairBienville House / Nathan Fell Architecture - Housing, Stairs, Door, HandrailBienville House / Nathan Fell Architecture - Housing, FacadeBienville House / Nathan Fell Architecture - More Images+ 16

New Orleans, United States

Bastion Community Housing / OJT

Bastion Community Housing / OJT - Housing, Garden, Facade, Stairs, DoorBastion Community Housing / OJT - Housing, Garden, FacadeBastion Community Housing / OJT - Housing, Door, FacadeBastion Community Housing / OJT - Housing, Garden, FacadeBastion Community Housing / OJT - More Images+ 22

New Orleans, United States

Starter Home* No. 4-15 Housing / OJT

Starter Home* No. 4-15 Housing / OJT - Adaptive Reuse, Door, FacadeStarter Home* No. 4-15 Housing / OJT - Adaptive Reuse, Courtyard, Facade, DoorStarter Home* No. 4-15 Housing / OJT - Adaptive Reuse, Facade, DoorStarter Home* No. 4-15 Housing / OJT - Adaptive Reuse, Courtyard, FacadeStarter Home* No. 4-15 Housing / OJT - More Images+ 27

Trahan Transforms Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre with Advanced Fabrication

New Orleans-based Trahan Architects have wrapped the interior of Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre in steam-bent oak. Working with FARO and fabricators CW Keller, the team was inspired by the style of furniture and design artist Matthias Pliessnig. Led by founder Victor F. “Trey” Trahan and partner Leigh Breslau, the renovation has created a signature piece of cultural architecture for Atlanta.

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When the Best Laid Plans Go Awry: What Went Wrong with New Orleans' Make It Right Homes?

This article was originally published on CommonEdge as "Rob Walker on the Mistakes of Brad Pitt's Make it Right."

I will start with a confession: I was part of the fawning media swarm that lauded and applauded the accomplishments of Make It Right, Brad Pitt’s bold attempt to rebuild a portion of the Lower Ninth Ward in New Orleans. The project was, it seemed once, one of the few post-Katrina success stories coming out of that flood-ravaged community.

The Shop at CAC / Eskew+Dumez+Ripple

The Shop at CAC / Eskew+Dumez+Ripple - Sustainability, Beam, Table, Chair, Bench
© Neil Alexander

The Shop at CAC / Eskew+Dumez+Ripple - Sustainability, Facade, CityscapeThe Shop at CAC / Eskew+Dumez+Ripple - Sustainability, Door, Beam, FacadeThe Shop at CAC / Eskew+Dumez+Ripple - Sustainability, Beam, ColumnThe Shop at CAC / Eskew+Dumez+Ripple - Sustainability, Beam, LightingThe Shop at CAC / Eskew+Dumez+Ripple - More Images+ 48

  • Architects: Eskew+Dumez+Ripple
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area :  40000 ft²
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year :  2018
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers :  Andreu World, Cosentino, Designtex, Sto, BTicino, +84
  • Professionals : Palmisano Group

The Top 10 Inspirational Design Cities of 2018, As Revealed by Metropolis Magazine

In Metropolis Magazine's latest - and last - installment in their annual design cities review, the focus is not on output or culture but on cities themselves as the point of inspiration. For the designers surveyed, these were the cities that made their hearts beat a little faster; the ones that remained in their minds and wormed their way into their work.