TABLE OF CONTENTS
At the Center for Architecture
Job Opportunity: AIANY Development Associate for Corporate Relations
Editor's Note: So many events, so little time. New York is bursting with architecture activity! With plans for the Javits Center expansion to be released today, and with the weekend's unfortunate fire at the Prada store (engulfing the whole building interior), there's no indication action will cease. In addition to our usual smorgasbord, this e-Oculus introduces new eOn The Scene and Of Interest sections. Covering all of the exciting parties and social events is our new Events Correspondent, Darris James. As always, please write email@example.com with any response, frustration, excitement, or general feelings you want to share.
REPORTS FROM THE FIELD
Residents Must Return to New Orleans
"I believe we can solve any problem," asserted Patricia Gay, Executive Director of the Preservation Resource Center of New Orleans, at a January 11 lecture at the Museum of the City of New York. "If we lose the houses, it's our fault." Gay outlined work currently underway in the ravaged city during her lecture, "Restoring New Orleans." Her approach to the daunting and emotionally charged subject was largely humanitarian and less informative as far as the mechanics of recovery and historical background were concerned.
The lecture was introduced by a cursory glance at New Orlean's tumultuous history: fires and epidemics of the 19th century to the quick recovery from the Civil War. The ultimate message is that New Orleans is resilient. "It is the people who are going to save the city, as they have done in the past."
Gay's focus was on saving the vernacular neighborhoods of the 20th century, including Creole cottages and shotgun houses, which are in danger because they are largely undervalued due to size and lack of recognizable aesthetic impact. Neighborhoods like Holy Cross, Gentilly, and Edgewood Park—all largely comprised of these houses—are now facing either demolition or restoration.
The frenetic demand to get residents back and settled while maintaining the historical architecture needs to happen immediately. Showing a picture of two awkward college-aged kids grinning with shovels held high, Gay delivered a cutting blow to organizations trying to help: "Habitat [for Humanity] is building new houses where no one lives. It's great that they want to participate… but what we really need is simply to get people back into their houses." Perhaps now is not the time to form think-tanks.
Jaffer Kolb is a freelance writer and an assistant editor at The Architect's Newspaper.
New York City Works
Jacket Design: Steven Puetzer/Iconica
United by a common enthusiasm for infrastructure in the city, a crowd of architects, critics, and punters gathered at the Center for Architecture on January 9. While author Kate Ascher, Executive Vice-President of the Economic Development Corporation, kept referring to herself as "really geeky" for being so inspired by things like the trajectory of a carrot as it travels across the country and where New York City garbage goes, the company hardly complained. Chair of the New York City Planning Commission and Director of the Department of City Planning, Amanda Burden, Hon. AIANY, introduced Ascher's book, The Works: Anatomy of a City, as "my favorite book that I have read in decades."
Ascher discussed the very thorough process of sewage treatment. Garbage used to be dumped just 12 miles offshore and, for a brief period, sent to Siena Blanco, Texas to be spread on the ground (locals were well-compensated). She then segued to explain the origin of the city's clean water (a 24 million gallon reservoir in Murray Hill is one of the sources), and how thoroughly maintained it is (500 samples a month taken from 800 sampling stations).
Other fun facts: of the 3,200 street-crossing buttons, only a quarter actually work; the silver nitrogen tanks seen on the streets are to cool the overheating telephone wires; and our trash goes to Virginia and Pennsylvania. Between 1897 and 1953, pneumatic tubes transported mail from Herald Square to Grand Central in four minutes. The first subway was constructed for cargo only and illegally carried about 400,000 people. When subway cars die, they are delivered to the waters off of Delaware where an underwater reef complex grows. The city's power runs off a grid that is adjusted every six seconds in accord with the current state of supply and demand. All of the large freight ships that come into the harbor have to be piloted by the Sandy Hook pilots, who have monopoly on the industry.
Eva Hagburg is a New York-based writer.
How Does Your Building Grow?
Composition by Mark Helder
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is slowly infiltrating the U.S. construction industry and the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED rating system. LCA is a methodology for assessing the environmental performance of a product over its full life cycle, from making, transporting, using, and maintaining, to disposing. On the basis of these assessments quantified by environmental impact, early design decisions can be made to determine which configurations or assemblies in a building have the least environmental impact during the life span of a building.
High Performance Green Building Salon kicked off its first lecture of the year January 12 with speaker Wayne Trusty, President of the Athena Sustainable Materials Institute and Athena Institute International. Similar to a system launched in the UK, Trusty proposed an LCA rating to be ultimately integrated into the LEED rating system. Where the European system has been enforced through government initiatives, an election process would be established in America.
With the event running short on time, the ever-important economic implications were only touched upon. One way for an architect to convince a client to choose a greener alternative, is to keep separate but equal LCA and Life Cycle Costing, placing a dollar amount on the life cycle of a building.
To learn more about the Athena Institute, the software package enabling architects to assess and compare different building assemblies, click the link. Life Cycle Analysis: Applications and Implications for the Design of Green Buildings was organized by AIANY, AIANY Committee on the Environment, EBA/ NYS, and the US Green Building Council's New York Chapter. The event was sponsored by Benjamin Moore & Co., C/S Group, Forbo, Lutron Electronics, NYSERDA, The New York Real Estate Journal, Tate Access Floors, and Zumtobel Staff Lighting.
Mark Helder, Assoc. AIA, is principal of Helder Design, a studio specializing in green design, and an active member of the Emerging NY Architects committee.
It's Not Easy Teaching Green
By way of introducing herself to the audience gathered at the CUNY Graduate Center for the "Talking Green: Green Education" panel discussion, Jean Gardner asked audience members to introduce themselves to someone they did not know and describe to that person what they did with their hands that day.
Gardner, who teaches Architectural History at Parsons The New School for Design, believes that teaching students to design in harmony with nature should begin with such exercises. She painted a picture of inevitable human extinction from a planet in which citizens cannot determine the flow of rain from their roofs, and do little with their hands to connect them with the natural environment. Of course, teaching urban students how to understand the shape of natural topography and teaching how to reverse the course of global warming are two very different lessons.
Joining Gardner on the panel were Kathleen Bakewell, landscape architect and Adjunct Assistant Professor at Columbia University's Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, and Joel Towers, director of Studies in Sustainable Design & Urban Ecology at Parsons.
I Am What I Shoot: ESTO Photographers Talk With Architects
Whose eye counts?
(l-r): Guido Hartray, Rogers Marvel Architects; David Sundberg, photographer; Ronnette Riley, FAIA; Peter Aaron, photographer
(l-r): Erica Stoller, Director, Esto; Albert Vecerka, photographer; Clair Weisz, AIA, weisz + yoes studio
Years ago, architectural photographers shot in black and white only, the format that Architectural Record required. Architects requested that photographers shoot a project without distractions (read: people). But now, with the proliferation of media, architectural photographs have become more important than the buildings. While a building is fixed, countless more people can see the photographs on exhibit, in magazines, newspapers and on the internet. In addition, architects are finding that great photographs generate the best computer renderings.
Architects agree it is crucial to document their work—but when is the best time to photograph a project? As part of the current show sponsored by Dawson Publications and Ibex Construction, ESTO NOW: Photographers Eye New York, three of the featured architect/architectural photographer teams—Ronnette Riley, FAIA and Peter Aaron (Apple Store, Soho), Claire Weisz, AIA, of weisz + yoes studio and Albert Vecerka (Bronx Charter School for the Arts), and Guido Hartray of Rogers Marvel Architects and David Sundberg (Higgins Hall Center Section, Pratt Institute), spoke about their professional collaborations and photographic obstacles on January 19 at the Center for Architecture.
Albert Vecerka had to find a window of opportunity where he would not intrude on the Bronx Charter School. When he was able to set up, he shot eight photos in an hour and a half. He also risked attracting the police when he shot the school from the expressway near the school. David Sundberg shot Higgins Hall when it was completed and bustling with student activity. According to him, "If you're not pissing someone off—you're not doing your job." Peter Aaron likened his role to a psychiatrist for architects. The architect, lost in punch list details, can lose sight of the overall concept for a project; the architectural photographer brings it back into perspective for him or her.
Will New Urb Translate in NJ?
The meeting of the Congress for the New Urbanism's budding New York/New Jersey branch on January 19 brought good news for eyesore-riddled Bergen County. An abandoned 66-acre brownfield in Wood-Ridge, NJ, formerly the Curtiss-Wright aircraft components plant, will become Wesmont Station, a mixed-use community featuring residences, offices, retail, athletic fields, a middle school, a senior center, and a public plaza.
Wesmont represents a collaboration between one national firm, Miami's Duany Plater-Zyberk, and one local firm, DMR Architects of Hasbrouck Heights, NJ. Site developer Ralph Zucker and DMR's Ralph Rosenberg, AIA, presented their ideas at the CNU session. Planning-board approval came in December 2005; environmental remediation is under way, with completion projected in 2012.
The site design (DPZ's second New Jersey project) features pedestrian walks, bike paths, and playing fields while excluding chain and big-box stores as well as de-emphasizing vehicular use. Critically, Zucker's team convinced New Jersey Transit to add a train stop to the Bergen Line, bringing transit-oriented development (TOD) to Wood-Ridge.
North Jersey sprawl presents unique challenges for New Urbanism, and Wesmont raises the question of just how urban, or how new, the DPZ version of New Urbanism might be. The project's renderings, iconography, and marketing campaign have a distinctly suburban tone. The projected prices (in the mid-six figures for private homes) and references to high-income area residents in Wesmont's promotional materials also don't carry implications of demographic diversity being an exceptionally strong priority for the project.
The Sydney Opera House during construction
Copyright Arup. Photographer Peter Ross.
The Sydney Opera House after construction
Copyright Arup. Photographer Peter Ross.
From the general sketches of Jorn Utzon, Hon. FAIA, to his insistence on an ideal marriage between architecture and construction, Arup developed the technology needed to realize the Sydney Opera House despite a constant state of uncertainty throughout.
Cliff McMillan, a principal at Arup's New York office, discussed Arup's role in constructing the Sydney Opera House on January 17 at the Center for Architecture, an event organized by Arup (the sponsor of the event), the AIANY Cultural Facilities Committee, and SEAoNY. Innovation and flexibility were key to the design process. Construction of the podium had to be built to accommodate roof loads before the roof structure was invented. Compression loads are transferred to the ground through sin-curved columns—a triumph of ingenious cast-in-place concrete work. The roof took four years to develop through an elaborate process of scaled modeling and trial-and-error. Ultimately, Arup developed the pre-cast, post-tensioned concrete system needed to construct the spherical shell roof.
The production of one million tiles and calculations for the first 3-D space frame necessitated the use of advanced computer programs. Because the Sydney Opera House was completed in 1973, computers were far from advanced. Arup developed its own software specifically to tackle these construction challenges.
The Sydney Opera House is not just a performing arts center; it is the icon representing Sydney, Australia. It is a feat of concrete work resulting from years of research and experimentation. It is the building that defined Arup's practice.
The New Model Firm
The lecture topic billed as "On Generative Form-Finding and Parametric Rationalization for Constructability" wasn't exactly one to tempt the customers to the Center for Architecture January 10. Believe it or not, they came in droves, most of them in their 20s and 30s, to listen to Gehry Technologies research and consulting director Cristiano Ceccato paint a picture of an entirely new kind of office—one made possible by breakthroughs in using computers to generate parametric models that deliver buildable designs bothered by far fewer disputes, delays, and cost overruns than in today's fragmented delivery process.
Ceccato painted a world of practice where the gap between form, concepts, and buildable solutions disappear as the design and construction team views a single integrated 3-D model of the project, using parametric tools (that is, tools where each design component comes with its own parameters of size, function, adjacency, and even cost), custom programming, design collaboration across all segments of the delivery team, digital project management, and computer-aided fabrication of key or tricky components. Contract documents will be replaced by a digital project 3-D master model.
In due course, in Ceccato's view, we'll see a totally new kind of office, peopled by professionals hired less for their ability to do discrete jobs such as drafting, spec writing, cost estimating, and code compliance, than for their ability to manipulate the digital model in a way that translates form into actual building. Stay tuned.
The lecture was organized by the Chapter's Technology Committee, headed by Paul Seletsky, Assoc. AIA, director of digital design in SOM's New York office (firstname.lastname@example.org). Also visit gehrytechnologies.com.
The Village Is an Island
Cover of "Punk," April 1976 by John Holmstrom
Courtesy Parsons The New School of Design. Lent by Carol McCranie and Xavier Magri.
Given that curator Christopher Mount was sixteen in 1979, "Anarchy to Affluence: Design in New York 1974–1984," an exhibit at Parsons The New School for Design, focuses on the burgeoning late-70s scene. Jamie Reid's Sex Pistols graphics, Stephen Sprouse's iconic printed clothes and sketches, collaged fliers, and 45s for the Ramones, Buzzcocks, and Patti Smith fully represent the messy, amateur, and exhilarating ephemera of the time. However, Massimo Vignelli's 1972 New York City anachronistic subway map illuminates the fact the show just begins to touch on the city's design output in the 70s. Domestic interiors and industrial detailing in Joan Kron and Suzanne Slesin's High Tech (1978) are touted as one of the only lasting achievements in design.
Corporate America loves few things more than youth rebellion, so unsurprisingly many of the exhibited images of anarchy are now firmly embedded within the establishment. Who else can take youthful passions so seriously? The show's attempt to substantively engage the world beyond 14th Street is almost as unconvincing as the belief that most people marry their prom date.
Pollyanna Rhee is a member of Architecture for Humanity New York. She also used to check mail for n+1 magazine, a skill arguably more relevant to her bachelor's degree in politics than whitewashing plywood.
This Is Not Your Father's Hospital…
Advancements in technology have drastically changed the world of high performance textiles since the early 1990s. Materials, cleaning agents, and testing equipment exist today enabling the development of new hybrid textiles that both feel natural and are as durable and easy to clean as vinyl.
Marty Gurian, the Director of Engineering Resources and Technical Education at Designtex, presented different types of fibers and finishes on January 18 at an event organized by Designtex and the AIA Interiors Committee. Demonstrations, samples, and a "high performance solutions calculator" demystified choosing correct textiles for a project, whether located in a severe environment, infection control area, or heavily trafficked arena. New materials, weaves, back-coatings, sustainability features, and digital printing capabilities make possible a wide variety of textures, colors, and patterns.
For more specific information, the Designtex website has a wealth of information detailing each type of textile and finish available for every high performance need.
Note: The debate surrounding Ground Zero continues. To read Michael Sorkin's Plan for Ground Zero and James Rossant's, FAIA, response, click on the links. Please email your own response to email@example.com and contribute to the ongoing dialogue!
The best scheme of the bunch was by Peterson/Littenberg Architecture and Urban Design. A more neo-modernist approach to the structures could have produced an enduring/ vital urban environment. Freedom Tower? A shallow parti!
On a temporary basis, everyone, even those of us who bridled at the un-architectural and un-developer friendly suggestion, should have listened to Rudy Giuliani not long after September 11: "Make it a park." Looking back, a temporary infill, respecting the footprints in some way, but making the at-grade site accessible, having a literal closure, may have helped in calming the churn of responses there has been. A park, even a temporary park, could have been and maybe could still be a successful simple gesture.
A coalition of Mr. Sorkin and Mr. Rossant and Mr. Giuliani isn't necessary. We have come to trust that the moguls, civic, private, celebrity champions of our success know best. Towers can wait until the economy drives the need, and maybe drives it elsewhere.
It is past time for a small—even if temporary—plan.
—Kevin O'Connor, AIA
Maybe I should have known better, but going to see Santiago Calatrava speak proved to be a frustrating experience. The Alliance for Downtown New York is presenting a lecture series called Downtown Third Thursdays 2006. "A lecture series featuring prominent architects, authors, and historians exploring themes and issues of particular relevance to Lower Manhattan," according to the postcard, I went to the lecture expecting Calatrava to discuss his downtown New York projects. What I experienced was a canned lecture and movie that surveyed his recent work around the world: buildings in their natural landscapes, buildings in motion, bridges that redefine an urban terrain, and bridges as city icons while interspersing images of nature, life drawings, and sculptures. I quickly grew disappointed when he finally got to the NYC projects and skimmed over them so quickly they were absorbed by all of the others.
The lecture took place on the 60th floor of One Chase Manhattan Plaza—a space with a spectacular 360-degree view of Manhattan. Situated between South Street and Ground Zero, it was a perfect location to view both of Calatrava's sites. Without even a question and answer session after the lecture, everyone was left viewing the sites from above with all of the same questions with which they arrived. I believe Calatrava is a great architect, but I wanted more than what I could obtain from leafing through a coffee table book.
Please respond at firstname.lastname@example.org.
eON THE SCENE
Style flaunted at the Fashion of Architecture Exhibit: "Sexy Grunge," "Mixed Design," "English English-Teacher Chic," "Inspired by Catherine Deneuve in Repulsion"
Darris W. James
Architect Winka Dubbeldam and Curator Bradley Quinn
Darris W. James
(l-r): Pamela Pulchalski, Deputy Director for Programs and Development, Andy Frankl, President, IBEX Construction, Margaret Helfand, FAIA, Rick Bell, FAIA, Susan Chin, FAIA
Architects to the Catwalk Please!
January 11 was a night to dress in fashionable attire if ever there was one at the Center for Architecture. With designers from both the architecture and fashion world in attendance, the Fashion of Architecture: CONSTRUCTING the Architecture of Fashion exhibit opened with style, structure, and a lot of cable!
The exhibit itself is a mix of 2-D and 3-D work from various artists, fashion designers, and architects. Threaded cables span and weave through the galleries with supporting images and garments on display. Drawings, photographs, and text are printed on fabric draped over the cables as if the work were being worn. Threads that tie the various disciplines together were spotlighted at the Curator Talk before the opening—a panel discussion among curator Bradley Quinn, exhibition designer Margaret Helfand, FAIA, architect Winka Dubbeldam, and fashion designer Pia Myrvold.
At the opening party packs of colorful young fashionistas seemed to outnumber architects donning the usual blacks and grays. When asked, the majority of partygoers had never been to an exhibit at the Center for Architecture; now they are anticipating future opportunities to "see" and "be seen" at the Center.
IN THE NEWS
Tempo Quickens for Lincoln Center Redevelopment
New Bronx Library Center Takes the LEED
Preserving 9/11 Memories
NEH Grant Awarded for Herbert F. Johnson Art Museum Expansion
A Tower Grows in the Far West Village
AROUND THE AIA + THE CENTER FOR ARCHITECTURE
Capturing the 2006 AIA Honor Awards
Among the winners recognized with Honor Awards for Architecture were: Richard Meier & Partners Architects for the Frieder Burda Collection Museum in Baden-Baden, Germany; Gluckman Mayner Architects for the Museo Picasso Malaga in Spain; and Polshek Partnership for the William J. Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock, AR.
Getting (and Staying) Licensed in New York
Although the basic principles for becoming a registered architect have not changed, there has been enough refinement to the process to warrant a serious review by those who became licensed several generations ago. Both young interns and "old timers" who have been confused by an array of conflicting requirements on state and national levels flocked to the discussion led by Robert Lopez, AIA, on January 11 at the Center for Architecture. Lopez is the new Executive Secretary for Architecture at the New York State Education Department's Office of the Professions.
NCARB's Intern Development Program (IDP) does not always satisfy New York State requirements, Lopez cautioned. Differences include the number of units required in each category and the qualifications of mentors and supervisors. A newly adopted provision, the "five-year rolling clock," went into effect in January limiting the period of time a candidate has to take all sections of the exam. Another provision under consideration would permit recent graduates to take the exam before completing experience requirements, though licensure would not occur before all requirements were met.
Differences between New York State and the AIA's continuing education requirements have confused architects and local chapters since New York adopted its requirements in January 2000. Because the differences lie in the eligibility of course type, New York State has issued a more specific list of unacceptable topics. Also, the AIA New York Chapter has agreed to clearly identify which programs at the Center for Architecture meet New York State and/ or AIA requirements. For further information on New York State's Continuing Education requirements please visit www.op.nysed.gov/archce.htm or contact Marcus Bleyer at the AIA New York Chapter, email@example.com.
For more information, visit the New York State Office of the Professions website. The discussion with Robert Lopez was sponsored by the AIANY Roundtable Committee.
Local AIA Chapters Spur Fieldston Historic Designation
After two years of acrimonious debate at community meetings in the Bronx and in the local Riverdale press, on Tuesday, January 10, the Landmarks Preservation Commission voted to make Fieldston the 84th historic district in New York City. Anticipating the unanimous vote in favor of designation, Landmarks Chair Robert Tierney opened the public meeting by saying, "Fieldston is one of the best-preserved early 20th century suburban neighborhoods," and that the action subsequently taken by the Commission would be "a cause for celebration, protecting the future of one of New York City's jewels and assuring that future changes will be appropriate."
The character of the Fieldston neighborhood was shaped by esteemed architect Dwight James Baum, who employed what was described at the Commission meeting as "a wonderful variety of architectural styles." Some community residents present felt that designation was not necessary, since the neighborhood is built-out and has internal design regulations. Others, including architects and preservationists such as former Landmarks Chair Jennifer Raab, herself a Fieldston resident, have stated that the long-term risks of demolition and inappropriate alteration require formal protection.
In a statement supporting designation drafted by Martin Zelnik, AIA, and issued by the AIA Bronx Chapter, it was noted that Fieldston "is one of the most unique, significant, and well-designed residential developments of its kind." The Manhattan-based AIA New York Chapter endorses the AIA Bronx call for historic district designation and was present to voice support at the January 10th meeting. Zelnik and Robert Esnard, AIA, representing AIA Bronx, also noted that a personal attack—in a letter to the Riverdale Review—on the architect Dwight James Baum, "requires a citywide response from all architects." The action by the Landmarks Preservation Commission was an overwhelming and emphatic affirmation of these sentiments.
Bridging the Divide Between NY and UK
US and UK Join Forces (l-r): Machlouzarides; Mark Strauss, FAIA; Rocco Leonardis, RIBA; Cleri Machlouzarides, RIBA; Derek Bradford, RIBA; Jack Pringle, RIBA; Tim Clark, RIBA; Susan Chin, FAIA; Paul Monaghan, RIBA; Jonathan Wimpenny, RIBA; Jayne Beilby; Simon Allford, RIBA; Rick Bell, FAIA; James Karl Fischer, AIA, RIBA.
The AIA and RIBA, two world leading professional bodies, have a duty to define global benchmarks and maintain the highest standards of professional excellence. A special roundtable discussion January 12 at the Center for Architecture, followed by an evening of lectures at the Hafele Showroom, emphasized the importance of bilateral engagement.
The roundtable, led by Mark Strauss, AICP, FAIA, and Jack Pringle, RIBA President, celebrated many areas of common engagement between the two professional bodies, particularly in the field of public projects and participation. The exchange about complimentary commitment towards urban regeneration, public health, air quality, and continuing education reinforced the value of this year's AIANY theme, Architecture as Public Policy.
The evening program addressed how cultural, international, and historic stereotypes can be broken down through effective global collaboration. Tim Macfarlane, engineer and partner at Dewhurst Macfarlane and Partners, criticized certain countries' preoccupations with cost (US), time (UK), and quality (Japan). Through his firm's work, Macfarlane revealed how bridging the divide is possible.
To Preserve or Not to Preserve: Kids Respond to Two Columbus Circle
Kyle Lomman of Allied Works Architecture presents plans for Two Columbus Circle in FamilyDay@theCenter.
Using pictures of the original 1964 Edward Durell Stone building and various collage materials, kids created their own vision for Two Columbus Circle at FamilyDay@theCenter, presented by the Center for Architecture Foundation on January 14. A tour of the current exhibit at the Center, "Two Columbus Circle (plus): Museum of Arts & Design and Allied Works Architecture," was led by Aliza Boyer, Senior Manager for School, Youth, and Family Programs at the Museum of Arts & Design, and Kyle Lommen of Allied Works Architecture.
For their redesign challenge, children were asked to think about both the history of the building and the current design proposal. Consistent with the debate surrounding Two Columbus Circle, most of the kids found a way to include key elements of the Stone building, including "lollipop" columns and arched openings, and incorporate the Allied Works design.
Center for Architecture Hosts Tribute to Norman Kurtz
Friends and family, colleagues and peers from the architecture, engineering and construction industries paid tribute on January 18 to Norman D. Kurtz, PE, co-founder of Flack + Kurtz, who passed away suddenly last May.
The Norman D. Kurtz '58 Fund for Innovation in Engineering at the Princeton University School of Engineering and Applied Science was announced, ensuring that Kurtz's message will last granting scholarships for students to gain real-world exposure to engineering outside of the traditional classroom setting. Also announced at the tribute was The Norman D. Kurtz Lecture Series, an annual collaboration between the Center for Architecture and Princeton University.
The Tribute was held at the Center for Architecture and was organized by A. Eugene Kohn, FAIA, Mrs. Honey Kurtz, and the firm Flack + Kurtz. Speakers, including A. Eugene Kohn, Honey Kurtz, Peter Flack, Michael Celia, and David Cooper, remembered Kurtz fondly, calling him loving, brilliant, talented, dedicated, and a true mentor.
The Kindness of Strangers
Plans for the rebuilding of New Orleans and the Gulf region have benefited from the contributions of ideas and funds from many in New York. The AIA New York Chapter and the Center for Architecture Foundation set aside a part of the funds received from Heritage Ball; generous contributions were received or earmarked by many individuals and firms, notably Mancini-Duffy, Tishman Construction, and Deutsche Bank. In the last few weeks, these funds have been disbursed to organizations involved in rebuilding efforts as follows:
Keep tuned to e-Oculus for ongoing reports on the impact of the funds.
The Architect's Newspaper published a Favorite Sources issue on January 6. Quotations from architects across the nation spotlight their most reliable consultants and contractors that help strengthen their projects.
…thought you might be interested…
If you have come across a great article, website, blog, news item, please send it in to e-Oculus and share your findings!
NAMES IN THE NEWS
Zyscovick, the Miami-based, architecture and urban planning firm, has opened a Manhattan office. David Erik Chase, AIA, is the new Managing Principal…
Jazz at Lincoln Center's Frederick P. Rose Hall, designed by Rafael Viñoly Architects, has received a merit award from the United States Institute for Theatre Technology, Inc. (USITT)… Interior designer Betty Sherrill will be honored with Parsons The New School for Design's second Centurion Award for Design Excellence. The award coincides with the centennial of the school's interior design program… Douglas Durst and Gail Mellow will be honored at the New York Industrial Retention Network's (NYIRN) annual networking and fundraising breakfast in May 2006…
David Scott has been named to chair the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, an international body and leading independent authority on planning, design, construction, and operation of tall buildings and urban areas… Rebecca Robertson is leaving her position as Executive Director of the Lincoln Center Development Project (LCDP) to become President and CEO of the Seventh Regiment Armory Conservancy… Shawn Marren, AIA, has been named Senior Associate at daSilva Architects…
"A contemporary observatory for new dialogues among humans and non-humans." The competition award is $30,000 and is open to all eligible recent graduates of professionally accredited degree programs in architecture and landscape architecture worldwide.
The Boston Society of Architects (BSA) is encouraging individuals and teams in the design and construction industries to submit applications for original research projects as part of their 2006 Research Grants in Architecture program. BSA is offering up to $75,000 in research grants, expanding the audience to include designers nationwide.
Abstract Deadline: Call for Papers CSAAR Conference
The Center for the Study of Architecture in the Arab Region (CSAAR) announces a call for papers for its first international conference to be held in Rabat, Morocco in November 2006. Papers dealing with all areas related to design education, and particularly work addressing paradigm shifts in design education, are welcomed.
Nomination: 2006 Building Brooklyn Award
The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce is accepting nominations for the 2006 Building Brooklyn Awards, an annual event recognizing recently completed construction projects that have had a positive impact on the borough's economy and quality of life. Nominations will be accepted in fifteen categories, including "green" design, a new addition this year.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency National Center for Environmental Research announces its 3rd Annual P3 competition—highlighting people, prosperity, and the planet—the three pillars of sustainability. Grants will be given to teams of college students to research, develop, and design solutions to promote sustainability, in a multi-step competition.
Registration: AIA/LA Design Awards Program
The AIA Los Angeles Chapter encourages architects with projects in the Los Angeles area to enter the 2006 AIA/LA Design Awards, Decade Awards and NEXT LA Awards.
Registration: NYSCA Architecture, Planning and Design Grant
The New York State Council on the Arts announces the availability of project grants for professionals in the design, planning and historic preservation fields through its Independent Projects Category. Grants of up to $10,000 will be available for professionals to realize specific projects that advance the field and contribute to the public's understanding of the designed environment. Only New York State residents are eligible to apply. Applicants must submit projects through a sponsoring nonprofit organization.
Nominations: 2006 National Preservation Awards
The National Trust for Historic Preservation is now accepting nominations for their 2006 National Preservation Awards. Individuals who have been involved in an outstanding preservation project completed in the past three years, or those who know of a corporation, nonprofit organization, public agency, or individual who has helped save a part of America 's local or national heritage are encouraged to submit a nomination.
Nominations: SMPS-NY Marketing Awards
The Society for Marketing Professional Services, New York Area Chapter (SMPS-NY) announces a call for nominations for their 10th Annual Marketing awards. Three awards will be given to honor marketers and their mentors in the New York area A/E/C industry. Nominees must be a member of SMPS; any SMPS member can nominate their mentor for the Marketing Mentor or Marketing Champion awards.
The City of Somerville, Massachusetts and the Boston Society of Architects invite designers to envision the future of a pivotal post-industrial area in Somerville, known as the BrickBottom District. Innovative urban visions for the area, along with more specific design interventions, will play a vital role in overcoming the complex hurdles to development in this area.
Registration: GreenStop© Design Competition
The California Department of Transportation (CALTRANS) and The Great Valley Center, with the support of the American Institute of Architects, California Council, and private organizations, are partnering in an open one-stage international competition to select a design and design team, for a self-sustainable, "off the grid" green roadside rest stop, known as a GreenStopİ. While this competition is site specific, the goal of this competition is to serve as a pilot project that will create a new model that could be replicated elsewhere in the state. Awards include a $10,000 grand prize.
Nomination: SMPS Marketing Communications Awards
SMPS is accepting entries for its 2006 Marketing Communications Awards (MCA) competition. The MCA recognize excellence in marketing communications by professional services firms in the design and building industry.
Submission: BusinessWeek/Architectural Record Award
The editors of Architectural Record and BusinessWeek announce the 9th annual BusinessWeek/Architectural Record awards program. The program's emphasis is on exceptionally designed work that makes a contribution to the business aspirations of a given company or institution. Recipients will be featured in the November 2006 issues of Architectural Record and BusinessWeek magazines.
Submission: Benjamin Moore HUE Awards
Benjamin Moore & Co. announces a call for entries for their second annual HUE Awards, honoring architects and interior designers for exemplary use of color in both residential and contract projects. Honorees receive $5,000 and an original sculpture.
Oculus 2006 Editorial Calendar
AIANY Design Awards
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Elsewhere: Exhibit Announcements
The Ernst Benkert Travel Desk
An installation of work from the artist Ernst Benkert. An afternoon of travel-related performances are planned for January 28, to accompany this exhibit.
Elsewhere: Ongoing and Upcoming
From 01.25.06 through 04.06
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It's Not Easy Teaching Green, continued
Bakewell discussed the importance of grounding sustainable design in sound ecological principles, despite an often more architecturally boring result. For example, resources used to build a green roof, one of the more popular yet expensive solutions, would better serve the environment if they were spent preserving a natural ecosystem threatened by suburban sprawl.
Bakewell finds a change evolving in mainstream culture. Major corporations are drafting environmental policies. Developers are inquiring about green practices. College students have grown up in an environmentally conscious culture unimaginable a generation ago.
Towers offered a different perspective. He argued that, while students should be aware of the current technical advances in sustainable design, it is more important to instill an ability to approach problems as an "informed public." Future environmental challenges are unpredictable, and today's technical solutions will likely not solve tomorrow's problems.
All three panelists agreed that interdisciplinary teaching is essential to the success of sustainable design. Towers decried the prevalence of hero-worship in architecture schools. Gardner made a frame shape with her hands, indicating confines within which designers think. But Bakewell was optimistic saying that her students care about a sustainable future.
Paul M. Davis is a project designer at Belmont Freeman Architects.
Will New Urb Translate in NJ?, continued
Granted, there'll also be rentals: Zucker recounted how Duany steered him toward adapting some bulky structures as lofts to attract some younger, perhaps artier residents. Whether a truly urban way of life could arise at Wesmont—not only mixed-use zoning, but mixed-income people—is an open question. A car-free person could theoretically live in Wesmont, but one wonders whether a critical mass of the car-free actually will.
Zucker and Rosenberg guardedly presented another idea that, if approved, might be among Wesmont's most forward-thinking aspects. The empty Curtiss-Wright plant will essentially be submerged, not demolished, with its interior columns helping support the plaza above. The planners contemplate using this space for subterranean parking. Planning may not quite be able to kill the car, but burying it alive has a certain appeal.
Is Wesmont "Traditional Neighborhood Development" (TND)? Neoclassicism? Transit-oriented development (or only transit-proximate)? Brownfield reclamation? Adaptive reuse? Arguably it qualifies as all of the above, and the New Urb designation provides a handy catch-all for the whole cluster of concepts. But they do not automatically imply each other nor address similar concerns. A development like Wesmont problematizes the idea that New Urbanism—at least the CNU's charter-defined brand—is ultimately about combating sprawl. Maybe it's just about prettying sprawl up a bit.
Zucker's enthusiasm for New Urbanism is infectious, and his new community will bring some badly needed qualities to Bergen County. The jury is still out on whether the CNU sees only a Rockwellish America—charming, but essentially nostalgic—or whether its principles can lead to environments that look ahead at the vital opportunities real cities provide.
Bill Millard is a freelance writer and editor whose work has appeared in Oculus, Icon, Content, and other publications.
Architects to the Catwalk Please!, continued
Music filled the air courtesy of the Venezuelan DJ Picon as drinks flowed courtesy of Bacardi Big Apple. Vases of granny-smith apples adorned the tables. Frenetic imagery designed by Winka Dubbeldam of Archi-Tectonics flashed above the main lecture hall evoking the feeling of a trendy European disco.
Perhaps the only thing missing from the event was summed up during the Curator Talk when Dubbeldam suggested that attendees should strip and try on all the gowns! And who would not look fabulous in Yoshiki Hishinuma's Tape Dress?!
The Fashion of Architecture: CONSTRUCTING the Architecture of Fashion is on view at the Center January 11—March 11, 2006. Accompanying the exhibit are a series of programs. Please see AIANY's exhibition listings for more information about the Material ConneXion Review and Family Day @the Center: From Dresses to Tents. Also, a conversation with Margaret Helfand was included in the last issue of e-Oculus. The exhibition is underwritten by IBEX Construction. The lead sponsor is Herman Miller, and additional sponsorship is provided by Interface Flooring Systems. In-kind contribution for the exhibition installation is provided by Jakob Inox Line.
Bridging the Divide Between NY and UK, continued
Amplifying the need for collaboration, Lucy Bullivant introduced her book, British Built: UK Architecture's Rising Generation. Simon Allford, RIBA, and Paul Monaghan, RIBA, of AHMM, referenced their work included in Bullivant's book, and discussed how their partnership and academic principles are being transformed into meaningful public works.
AIA NY Chapter Welcomes Jack Pringle, RIBA President was sponsored by RIBA-USA NY Chapter and the AIA New York International Committee. British Built: Bridging the Divide & British Built: UK Architects' Rising Generation was sponsored by Hafele, RIBA-USA NY Chapter, and the AIA International Committee.