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Washington University In St. Louis: The Latest Architecture and News

US Architecture School Bans Styrene as Model Making Material

By next Fall, the architecture students of Washington University in St. Louis will no longer be allowed to use Styrene on their projects. The university's newspaper, Student Life reports that the commonly used white plastic material was deemed in 2014 by the National Research Council's National Toxicology Program as "reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen." Thus the Sam Fox School of Design is taking its own measures to protect their student's health. A number of other schools and cities have already banned Styrene since the NRC's ruling.

Understanding St Louis: The Activism of Bob Hansman

For the past few weeks, events in Ferguson, Missouri have prompted many debates over what can or should be done to ease tensions in this suburb of St Louis. But Bob Hansman, a professor at the Washington University in St Louis, is taking a different approach: understanding it first. This interview with Hansman, originally published on the Washington University in St Louis Newsroom, unearths a few of the issues that have made some areas of St Louis so severely dispossessed.

It’s 10am, and Bob Hansman is on a bus addressing students, brandishing a St. Louis guidebook like a prosecutor at trial.

“Today isn’t this,” he growls. “Get ready.”

Discover more about the work of Hansman after the break.

A Wonderful World from Washington University in St. Louis

Prototype:  Conflict Resolver on the Green Line, Beirut, by Andrew Buck
Prototype: Conflict Resolver on the Green Line, Beirut, by Andrew Buck

In the Spring 2010 academic semester, Wiel Arets and Robert McCarter co-taught “A Wonderful World,” an advanced architectural design studio at Washington University in St. Louis. The students were asked to consider the following:

To understand the world we are living in at this moment, we have to redefine the “Map of the World,” a mental construct which at least since 1492 has undergone many reinterpretations. We could read the world anno 2020 as a collective living space for all of us, in which all the continents are in reach within 288 minutes, and the maximum travel distance at each continent will be 72 minutes, the time in which every city on each continent will be able to be reached. During the studio research, the world will be our territory, the continents are our daily living space, and the metropolitan three-dimensional city our home, surrounded by an untouched green/blue environment. The basic question we should put forward is: How will the city develop within our extremely exciting, complex, but “shrinking” world?

Washington University in St. Louis shared with us work from the studio. Follow the break for a description and drawings.

Students Featured: Andrew Buck, Shaun Dodson, Stephen Kim, Meredith Klein, Wai Yu Man, James Morgan, Aaron Plewke Images: Courtesy of Washington University in St. Louis

We also suggest you look at how students responded to the same questions proposed by Wiel Arets at the Berlage Institute Postgraduate Research Laboratory “A Wonderful World” class.