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Building Materials

What Exactly Do Architects Do?

January 30, 2015 by Taz Loomans

The Architectural Profession

Most people don’t really know what architects do on a day to day basis. Perhaps you have a vague notion that architects make napkin sketches sitting in sleek, low-lit bars playing jazz piano and a few months later fabulous buildings like the Guggenheim in Bilbao manifest from that sketch. This is not entirely true.[read more]

An Example of Low-Rise Intensification: Union Street EcoHeritage

January 30, 2015 by Brandon Donnelly

Urban Intensification

In a recent post about the three stages of intensification, I mentioned a project in Vancouver called Union Street EcoHeritage by SHAPE Architecture. I used it as an example for sensitive low-rise intensification. Since it’s a very cool project, I thought I would dedicate today’s post to explaining the project.[read more]

How Competitions Were Used to Speed Up Rebuilding After Hurricane Sandy

January 29, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Policy Goals and Seeking Innovation

 

In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, “HUD didn’t want to move at the speed of government” in its effort to create more resilient coastal designs in New York and New Jersey, so it started a special competition to speed things up.[read more]

Was Choosing Frank Gehry to Design Paris' Foundation Louis Vuitton in Bad Taste?

January 25, 2015 by Global Site Plans - The Grid

Frank Gehry and Building Design

 

A product of its times? A techno-monumentalist Blockbuster? The Vuitton Foundation, inaugurated in Paris at the end of October 2014, became the object of all the praise of the great national publications. Still, the foreign press has shown itself more nuanced and critical.[read more]

How Montreal Makes Winter Awesome

January 25, 2015 by Brandon Donnelly

Montreal and Winter Activities

It’s wintertime right now in Canada and that means there are a lot of people complaining about the cold and/or the fact that in our climate there are certain things that simply can’t (or shouldn’t) be done when it comes to city building. But I don’t buy that.[read more]

Designing with Nature: Insights for Drought Resilience and Carbon in Elqui Valley, Chile

January 25, 2015 by The Nature of Cities

Design and Natural Integration

Measures taken in cities to improve their adaptation to drought and for carbon sequestration are usually based on an efficient use of water and energy. But nature and rural areas near cities can provide key ideas to address these issues which are more in line with local needs and nature.[read more]

Before and After at 109 Hazelton Avenue

January 24, 2015 by Brandon Donnelly

Urban Renewal and Design

I recently connected with one of the principals of a Toronto-based construction management firm called Ripple Projects, which focuses primarily on contemporary custom homes. The founders spent many years prior to this doing similar projects at similar companies, such as Wilson Project Management.[read more]

Interview with Chris Reed on Stoss' Futuristic Landscapes

January 23, 2015 by The Dirt ASLA

Futuristic Landscape Architecture

Chris Reed, ASLA, is founding principal of Stoss, which won the National Design Award for landscape architecture in 2012. Reed is Associate Professor in practice of landscape architecture at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design. His most recent book is 'Projective Ecologies.'[read more]

Living Inside: MONU Magazine Tackles 'Interior Urbanism'

January 23, 2015 by This Big City

Interior Urbanism

In today’s world it seems we find ourselves no longer capable of separating the places of production from places of refuge. This is the great value of discussing the meaning of the “interior” in relation to forces that produce the city and the contemporary urban structures.[read more]

Paper From Plastic Bottles: An Environmental Win?

January 23, 2015 by Jeff McIntire-Strasburg

Plastic, Paper, Recycling, and the Future

Two entrepreneurs have figured out how to make mineral paper out of PET plastic bottles that’s four times cheaper than current methods.[read more]

Seattle's New, Doomed Freeway

January 19, 2015 by Jillian Glover

Seattle Infrastructure Construction

A few years years ago, I was applauding Seattle for its decision to tear down the Alaska Way Viaduct, an elevated freeway that runs along the city’s waterfront. Unfortunately, Seattle made this decision on the condition that a two-mile highway tunnel beneath downtown would be built to replace it.[read more]

How to Tell a Compelling (Tree) Story

January 18, 2015 by Leda Marritz

Making Trees Compelling

We spill a lot of ink on this blog on topics like policy, history, research, and opinion as they relate to green infrastructure. But where trees are concerned, sometimes it’s before and after photos that tell the most compelling story. Pictures document change in a completely different way than words ever can.[read more]