In this issue:
· Residence Hovers Along High Line
· The Team Grows in Brooklyn Arts Tower
· First Indoor Public Pool Makes a Splash in Queens
· Towers Live on the Edge — of the L Train
· Norfolk Street Turns On to Art
· A Fishy Ferry Experience from Staten Island
· Artist’s Work Cantilevers Over Denver
· Natural Elements Inspire New Residences in Anguilla

Residence Hovers Along High Line


Artist’s rendering of HL23.

Neil M. Denari Architects

LA-based Neil M. Denari Architects will make its mark in NYC on a 40-foot-wide site along the High Line. Construction has begun on HL23, a 14-story concrete-and-steel-framed building with diagonal perimeter bracing that will increase in size as it cantilevers over the raised railbed. HL23 is to have façade window panels that are over 11-feet-high by six-feet-wide. The building will include 11 residences, nine full-floor homes, a duplex penthouse with terraces, and a two-floor maisonette with a private garden at the building’s base. NY-based The Spector Group is the consulting architect for construction administration, and NY-based Thomas Juul-Hansen is designing the interiors. HL23 will be a subject in the upcoming exhibition Fast Forward: Neil Denari Builds On The Highline, opening in June 2008 at the Museum of the City of New York.

The Team Grows in Brooklyn Arts Tower

Brooklyn Arts Tower

The Brooklyn Arts Tower.


Arup will lead the programming and planning process for the fit-out of the Ashland Center at the Brooklyn Arts Tower in the BAM Cultural District. With Snøhetta as the interior architect, Arup will provide theater consulting and acoustic design services for the new center that will contain a main flexible performance space with facilities for dance and movement, large studios for rehearsals, workshops, and production development. The center is part of a commercial development designed by Studio MDA in collaboration with Behnisch Architects, providing street-level retail space with a high-rise residential tower.

First Indoor Public Pool Makes a Splash in Queens

FMCP Aquatic Center

FMCP Aquatic Center.

Daniel Avila / NYC Parks & Recreation

An Olympic-size swimming pool housed in the new Flushing Meadows Corona Park Natatorium and Ice Rink building is to be the first indoor public pool built by the city in 40 years. And when the NHL-regulation ice rink opens later this year, the public will enjoy what will reportedly be the largest recreation complex ever built in a city park. Designed by Handel Architects in association with Hom & Goldman Architects, the pool features 10 lanes. Movable bulkheads can configure the pool into three 25-meter swimming areas, allowing for different programming to take place at one time. One-third of the pool has a movable floor that can adjust the depth from just a few inches to over seven feet deep. A mezzanine bleacher section seats some 414 spectators, with additional seating on an adjacent outdoor terrace.

Inspired by 1939 and 1964 World’s Fair pavilions, the project was designed as part of the City’s 2012 Olympic bid, and features a three-story atrium lobby that separates the pool and ice arena under a cable-supported canopy roof.

Towers Live on the Edge — of the L Train

The Edge

The Edge.

The Stephen B. Jacobs Group

Phase One of The Edge, a new residential development on a 7.5-acre site in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, is underway. Designed by The Stephen B. Jacobs Group with interiors by Andi Pepper Interior Design, construction on the first two condo towers — one 30 stories with 370 residences and the other 15 stories with 205 units — is expected to be ready for occupancy by summer, 2009. A third tower is also planned to include more than 60,000 square feet of retail space, below grade parking for 700 cars, and approximately 1.75 acres of open space for a waterfront public park with a water taxi landing. Also proposed for the neighborhood is 54 acres of parkland, complete with an aquatic center, esplanade, and piers.

Norfolk Street Turns On to Art

Switch Building

The Switch Building.


In addition to four full-floor apartments, and a duplex penthouse, the 14,000-square-foot Switch Building, designed by nARCHITECTS, contains a 2,000-square-foot nonprofit art gallery, appropriately titled the Switch Gallery. The art space expands its boundaries via a black hot-rolled steel and glass storefront that opens to the sidewalk. At the rear of the gallery, visitors descend into a double-height volume illuminated by a large skylight. The gallery’s plan maximizes wall space in a fluid spatial continuity while working around the obstacles of the residential core and lobby with which it shares its footprint. The “switching” concept can be seen in the bay windows that angle from the front façade, switching to maximize light and views.

A Fishy Ferry Experience from Staten Island

St. George Ferry Terminal

New fish tanks at the St. George Ferry Terminal.

Skanska USA

Commuters at the St. George Ferry Terminal on Staten Island may now pass waiting time viewing saltwater fish from the Indo-Pacific and Caribbean regions inhabiting two tanks built by Skanska USA. Each eight-foot-tall tank weighs 10 tons when filled with water. Three-inch thick acrylic walls contain 200 fish and 2,200 gallons of water. A back-up system for the tanks is situated downstairs in the life support room, which houses filters, heaters, sterilizers, control systems and 14 pumps to keep the fish healthy.

Natural Elements Inspire New Residences in Anguilla


Kamique in Anguilla.

Lee H. Skolnick Architecture + Design Partnership

The first of four residential projects on the Caribbean island of Anguilla, designed by Lee H. Skolnick Architecture + Design Partnership, is complete. Kamique, a luxury rental property, has villas ranging from four to six bedrooms focusing on experiencing water, sand, sky, and wind. The three projects still in the works include villas and condos, or a combination of the two. The design for Shoal Bay was inspired by cultures of the indigenous Arawak Indians and African traditions blended with natural elements; Willow Run is said to re-interpret a traditional open-air Caribbean structure composed of two adjoining parcels each with a residential building with three connected pavilions.

In this issue:
· Domino Sugar Factory: Back to Scratch
· Buildings Department Cracks Down on Elevator Violations
· AIANY Policy Update: Congestion Pricing
· IALD Position Statement: Banning the Incandescent Bulb
· Overseas Building Operations to Benefit from Local Architect
· Passing: Margaret J. DeLaCour

Domino Sugar Factory: Back to Scratch
The Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) reviewed the design for the redevelopment of the Domino Sugar Factory on the Williamsburg, Brooklyn, waterfront, and sent architects Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners back to the drawing board. The design consists of a 5-story, rectangular glass addition, which the LPC felt was not appropriate for the factory, citing that it was “too tall.” Many of the commissioners felt that it needed to be more industrial and “visionary.”

Buildings Department Cracks Down on Elevator Violations
Beginning 03.05.08, 10 residential buildings with chronically defective elevators were publicly listed on the Department of Building’s website as part of a shame campaign to force building owners to return their elevators to service. The 10 worst offenders will be pursued under the department’s Elevator Enforcement Program, an aggressive enforcement agenda to ensure safe and reliable elevator service. The program also includes legislation with significant daily penalties for elevator violations. New Yorkers are encouraged to call 311 to report non-compliant conditions or 911 to report emergencies at construction sites.

AIANY Policy Update: Congestion Pricing

With the resignation of Governor Spitzer and political change in the air, there is a need to make AIANY’s voice heard in Albany on policies that matter to architects, including congestion pricing. The AIANY Transportation and Infrastructure Committee has worked hard to investigate all of Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC transportation initiatives, and now offers a report that addresses the effects of congestion pricing on planning and design issues in the city. The Chapter has adopted their expert opinion as official policy.

If you feel strongly about the need for a congestion mitigation strategy in NYC, do act, as your voice as a design professional and AIA member can make a difference.

To read the Committee’s report and congestion pricing position statements, click the link or e-mail Laura Manville, AIA NY Policy Coordinator.

To e-mail Christine Quinn, Speaker of the NY City Council, click here.
To e-mail Sheldon Silver, Speaker of the NY State Assembly, click here.
To e-mail new Governor David Paterson, click here.
To e-mail State Senator Malcolm Smith, click here.

Sample text:
As a practicing architect (/urban planner/designer) and member of the American Institute of Architects, New York Chapter, I want to express my strong support for congestion pricing. Our Chapter has stated that “The elegance of the concept of congestion pricing is that it simultaneously discourages inefficient use of the road and bridge network, encourages more efficient modes of transportation, reduces energy use and air pollution from vehicular use, and provides a reliable mechanism to fund improvements to the mass transit system…. this concept is the key to providing a comprehensive transportation strategy, which addresses current limitations as well as growth for the City.”

Please support this sound example of forward thinking transportation planning that will simultaneously sustain our city’s growth and the quality of urban spaces for its residents.

IALD Position Statement: Banning the Incandescent Bulb
Enlightened folks from Australia to California and across Europe want to ban the incandescent lamp. The recently enacted U.S. energy legislation will phase out certain types of incandescent bulbs. While the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD) strongly supports the technologies and appropriate regulation to minimize the energy use of lighting systems, the organization believes that “incandescent bans” must be carefully conceived or they won’t work. There are several points connected to the phasing out of incandescent lamps that should be addressed. Click here to read the full position statement.

Overseas Building Operations to Benefit from Local Architect
Barbara Nadel, FAIA, was recently named the AIA Representative to the U.S. Department of State’s Overseas Building Operations Industry Advisory Panel. The Advisory Panel provides the Director of the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations with the latest methods, concepts, best practices and ideas to ensure that safe, secure, and functional facilities are provided for U.S. diplomatic missions worldwide. Nadel is principal of Barbara Nadel Architect in NYC, and is the author of Building Security: Handbook for Architectural Planning and Design, for which she received the 2005 Institute Honors for Collaborative Achievement. She was 2001 AIA National Vice President and served twice as AIA New York Regional Director. She is currently the Editor-in-Chief of Soloso, AIA’s eKnowledge website.

Passing: Margaret J. DeLaCour
Margaret J. DeLaCour, 63, of Brooklyn Heights and Glen Cove, NY, passed away on 02.18.08. In her long career, she served in a number of senior level positions in NYC government, at the Department of Environmental Protection, the NYC Water Board, and the Brooklyn Borough President’s Office. Additionally, she served on a number of nonprofit boards, including The Junior League of Brooklyn, Colony South Brooklyn, Grace Church School, and the Planting Field Arboretum of Oyster Bay. She and her husband, architect Wids DeLaCour, AIA, also supported numerous organizations dedicated to providing educational and outdoor opportunities for NYC children. The family prefers in lieu of flowers that contributions be made to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, 1000 Washington Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11225, or to the Planting Field Arboretum, Planting Field Foundation, PO Box 660, Oyster Bay, NY 11771.

Pop-Ups to Pop Up Around World

Pop-Up LA

The Pop-Up Storefront in Los Angeles.

Courtesy Storefront for Art and Architecture

The Storefront for Art and Architecture is moving beyond the confines of New York. “Pop-Ups” will avoid the conventional gallery format by temporarily taking over unoccupied spaces in unexpected neighborhoods around the world to exhibit and discuss pressing topics in art and architecture, and to create a global network of dialogue centered on Storefront New York.

On April 11, the first Pop-Up Storefront will open in a partially unused Los Angeles print works shop on Sunset Boulevard, with the exhibition CCCP (Cosmis Communist Constructions Photographed), which was exhibited last April in Storefront New York. Then, Pop-Ups plan to make appearances in Milan during the 2008 Salone del Mobile furniture fair, April 16-21, and England for the London Festival of Architecture, June 20-July 20.

2008 AIA Housing Award winners included NY-based firms in the category of One/Two Family Custom Housing: Voorsanger Architects (Wildcat Ridge Residence); and Leroy Street Studio Architecture (Modern Barn); and in the category of Multifamily Housing: Cook+Fox Architects (Front Street, Block 97); and BKSK Architects (25 Bond Street)…

BusinessWeek and Architectural Record announced “Good Design is Good Business” China Award Winners, including NY-based firms in the categories of Best Public Projects: Suzhou Museum in Suzhou by I.M. Pei Architect with Pei Partnership Architects and Suzhou Institute of Architectural Design; and Best Planning Project: Beijing Finance Street in Beijing by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

Amanda Burden, Hon. AIANY, will receive Special Recognition for Public Service at the New York Building Congress 87th Anniversary Leadership Awards Luncheon …

STUDIOS architecture announced several promotions in its NY office: Brian Tolman, AIA, Principal; Greg Keffer, Principal; David Burns, AIA, Associate Principal; and Mark Palermo, Chief Operating Officer… George Drallios, AIA, has joined The Athena Group as Vice President of Design… HLB’s NY Office announced its newest Principal, Hayden N. McKay, AIA, FIALD, FIES, LEED AP, and has promoted Lee E. Brandt, LC, LEED AP, to Associate Principal…

RMJM Hillier announces four additions to the firm’s NY Office: Chris Jones, RIBA, the managing principal of the Urban Studio; Roger Klein, AIA, design principal; Winslow Kosior, AIA, a curtain wall technology expert; and John Plappert, AIA, ACHA, a healthcare designer; and Mark Lippi, AIA, was promoted to Principal…

Perkins Eastman has created a Wholly Foreign Owned Enterprise (WFOE) in Shanghai to better serve clients in Eastern Asia… Jonathan S. Drescher, AIA, was appointed as Director of Major Projects for The Durst Organization… Michael Giaramita has joined the NYC office of Stantec…

Russell Fortmeyer leaves Architectural Record and GreenSource for sustainable design consulting with Arup’s Sydney, Australia office… Edward A. Feiner, FAIA, has left Skidmore, Owings & Merrill to become senior vice president and chief architect for the Las Vegas Sands Corporation…

OCULUS 2008 Editorial Calendar
If you are an architect by training or see yourself as an astute observer of New York’s architectural and planning scene, note that OCULUS editors are looking for writers for the Fall and Winter issues. The themes:

Fall OCULUS: Practice. Focus of this year’s Practice issue is on the architectural office — the culture and decision-making structure of NY-based practices, how the office’s design reflects the culture, along with the views key players in the firm.

Winter OCULUS: Competing for Space. Explore the growing competition between expansionist institutions on limited sites and the interests of adjacent communities, many in residential areas with moderate-income families.

If you’re interested, please contact OCULUS editor-in-chief Kristen Richards. with a brief outline and full contact information.

Spring 2008: closed
Summer 2008: closed
06.01.08 Fall 2008: Practice
08.01.08 Winter 2008-09: Competing for Space

03.31.08 Call for Nominations: Sustainable Cities Award
Financial Times and the Urban Land Institute (FT ULI) will acknowledge exceptional examples of sustainable land use models that exhibit significant new ideas and perspectives for future practice. Nominations should demonstrate financial viability and be replicable with a capacity to inspire others. The Awards will recognize real estate programs in corporate strategic programs, public agency initiatives, non-governmental organization programs, and private development company initiatives. Up to seven winners will be the closing highlight of the first-ever Sustainable Cities conference in London on 06.16.08.

04.04.08 Call for Entries: SMPS National Marketing Communications Awards
The Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) awards program recognizes excellence in marketing communications by professional services firms in the design and building industry. The competition, composed of 18 marketing communications categories, and is open to both SMPS members and nonmembers. Award winners will be announced and honored at a multimedia, black-tie Awards Gala in August, during Build Business: Innovate to Elevate, the 2008 SMPS/PSMA National Conference in Denver, CO.

04.04.08 Call for Entries: Metropolis Smart Environments Awards
The International Interior Design Association (IIDA) and Metropolis magazine request entries for awards to recognize interiors that integrate excellence in design, human well-being, and sustainability. Interior projects completed after 01.01.05 are eligible. Winners will be announced at the NeoCon World’s Trade Fair 2008 in Chicago and will be considered for publication in Metropolis.

04.07.08 Call for Entries: Bombay Sapphire Designer Glass Competition
The Bombay Sapphire Foundation invites emerging US designers to design a martini cocktail glass inspired by Bombay Sapphire Gin. The first prize is $3,000 in gift certificates. The competition is running in other countries as well, and each national winner will be invited to the London Design Festival in September 2008 to compete in the global final. The overall winner will receive £10,000 in prize money.

04.16.08 Call for Entries: 2008 AIA/UK Chapter Excellence in Design Awards Programme
This awards program honors excellence in design by architects anywhere in the world for projects in the UK as well as UK-based architects for projects anywhere in the world.

04.20.08 Call for Ideas: White House Redux
What if the White House were to be designed today? On occasion of the election of the 44th President of the U.S., the Storefront for Art and Architecture, in association with Control Group, challenges designers to design a new residence for the “world’s most powerful individual.” The best ideas, designs, descriptions, images, and videos will be featured in a month-long exhibition at Storefront in July 2008. Three winners will be flown to NYC to collect their prizes at the opening party.

04.25.08 Call for Applications: 2008 Frederick P. Rose Architectural Fellowship
The Fellowship creates partnerships between emerging architects and community-based organizations to direct the skills and passions of the architects in the service of low and moderate-income communities. It is designed to promote the value of quality design and green building in affordable housing, and encourages architects to become lifelong leaders in public service and community development. Applications are now available for four new Rose Fellowship opportunities in diverse communities from San Francisco to East Biloxi, Mississippi, and Downtown Minneapolis to rural Minnesota.

04.28.08 Call for Expressions of Interest: Living Steel Extreme Housing Competition
The third international architecture competition presents architects with the task of creating energy efficient, single-family, detached housing that minimizes climate change emissions and can withstand temperature extremes, yet is affordable to build and buy. Entrants must be teams of two architects. Total prizes and honoraria are €100,000, with the winning design awarded €50,000. The winning architects will also construct their design in Cherepovets, Russian Federation.

Center for Architecture Gallery Hours
Monday-Friday: 9:00am-8:00pm, Saturday: 11:00am-5:00pm, Sunday: CLOSED

Join an Architalker for a Hosted Tour of Center for Architecture

Join us for free Architalker-hosted tours of the Center for Architecture exhibitions Fridays at 4:00pm. To join one of these tours, meet in the Public Resource Area on the ground floor of the Center for Architecture.


Building China

February 26 — May 31, 2008

Building China

Five Projects, Five Stories

Galleries: Judith and Walter Hunt Gallery, Mezzanine Gallery

The People’s Republic of China is undergoing a phenomenal transformation. Since 1978, with the adoption of an open-door policy, the country has developed a thriving market economy, out of which existing and new cities are experiencing rapid and aggressive growth. A new generation of architects is active in the vanguard of this construction, developing their own architectural identity.

Building China: Five Projects, Five Stories features five unique architectural case studies that were conceived, designed, and recently completed by Chinese architects. Located throughout China, many of these buildings, being exhibited in the U.S. for the first time, offer the public insight into China’s ever changing landscape. Through the stories of these five projects, themes emerge: Production of Contemporary Culture, Reinventing Urban Fabric, Making the Private Public, Reinterpreting Traditional Design Philosophy, and Hybrid Development Models. These case studies of contemporary architecture introduce critical voices from the People’s Republic of China, challenging the West’s stereotypical interpretation of China as a homogeneous society.

Organized by: The AIA New York Chapter and the Center for Architecture Foundation in collaboration with People’s Architecture and the AIA New York Chapter International Committee

Curator: Wei Wei Shannon, People’s Architecture

Co-Curator: Shi Jian

Exhibition Design: Popular Architecture

Graphic Design: Omnivore

Photography: Iwan Baan

Patron: Digital Plus

Beyer Blinder Belle: Architects & Planners


Jerome and Kenneth Lipper Foundation

Friend: Häfele, Calvin Tsao

Related Events

Thursday, March 20, 6:00 — 8:00pm

New York/China Dialogues

Friday, May 9, 2008, 6:30 — 8:30

Asian CineVision presents Films from Contemporary China

Friday, May 30, 2008, 6:30 &#8212 8:30pm

Film from the Da Zha Lan project, Sponsored by
the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU and NYU’s China House

To register or for more information:
CES credits available

February 15 — April 12, 2008

Danish/Chinese Collaboration on Sustainable Urban Development in China

Galleries: Kohn Pedersen Fox Gallery, HLW Gallery

The exhibition confronts the environmental challenges related to rapid and extensive urbanization in China and illustrates the value of international and interdisciplinary collaboration. CO- EVOLUTION displays four visionary projects – the results of collaborations between Danish architects and professors and students from leading Chinese universities.

This exhibition at the Center for Architecture is financed by the Danish Ministry of Culture

Related Programs organized by the AIA New York Chapter, the Center for Architecture Foundation, the Danish Architecture Centre, People’s Architecture, and the AIA New York Chapter International Committee

Curator: Henrik Valeur and UiD

Sponsored by:

Engineering Consultancy Services:

Related Events

Thursday, March 20, 6:00 — 8:00pm

New York/China Dialogues

Friday, May 9, 2008, 6:30 — 8:30

Asian CineVision presents Films from Contemporary China

Friday, May 30, 2008, 6:30 &#8212 8:30pm

Film from the Da Zha Lan project, Sponsored by
the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU and NYU’s China House

To register or for more information:
CES credits available

One Bryant Park

January 28 — May 3, 2008

Project Showcase: The Bank of America Tower at One Bryant Park

Galleries: Margaret Helfand Gallery, Gerald D Hines Gallery, Public Resource Center

Under the growing pressure of the climate crisis, how we design, as well as what we design has become a critical issue. The new office tower at Bryant Park, designed by Cook+Fox Architects and developed by the Durst Organization and Bank of America, is an example of how the design of tall buildings can be fundamentally rethought, serving the client and the planet with equal efficiency and respect. This exhibition explores One Bryant Park as a living ecosystem composed of the elements Light, Air, Water, Fire and Earth. These primary forces, when thoughtfully addressed as integrated and sustainable systems, contribute to a substantial reduction in the environmental impact of tall buildings, as well as to worker health and productivity. Anticipating a LEED platinum rating (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), the highest level of sustainable design recognized by the USGBC (U.S. Green Building Council), the crystalline faceted 54-story tower is at once both an iconic corporate presence and an emblem for the green design movement. Project Showcase: The Bank of America Tower at One Bryant Park asks design professionals to look more deeply at how architecture can engage natural systems and infrastructure, how sustainable measures can be more user-friendly, and how we can raise awareness for the urgent need of comprehensive green building solutions.

Exhibition and related programs organized by the AIA New York Chapter and the Center for Architecture Foundation in collaboration with the Illuminating Engineering Society of New York (IESNY)

Curator: Margaret Maile Petty

Exhibition Design: Morris | Sato Studio

Graphic Design: WSDIA | WeShouldDoItAll

Lead Sponsor: A. Esteban & Company

Sponsors: Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design, Illuminating Engineering Society of New York (IESNY), Severud Associates, Tishman Construction Corporation


Supporter: Jones Lang LaSalle

Exhibition Announcements

Off the Wall

Off the Wall.

Courtesy Jewish Museum of New York

Through 03.27.08
Off the Wall: Artists at Work

A two-week open studio project featuring 11 artists working and performing in the galleries, the new generation of Jewish social networks is on view. Artists create a work-in-progress and exhibit other work in various media including fashion, music, performance art, video, and new technologies. Events include concerts, salons, a runway show, and a Purim party. Exhibition design is by Studio ST Architects and Z-A.

The Jewish Museum of New York
1109 5th Avenue

Tropon est L’Aliment le Plus Concentre

Tropon est L’Aliment le Plus Concentre, lithograph on wove paper.

Henry van de Velde (Belgian, 1863-1957), Germany, 1898. Photo provided by Christie’s, courtesy Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum

Through 03.27.08
Rococo: The Continuing Curve

This is the first museum survey of Rococo and its ongoing resurgence. Lalique jewelry, glass, and rare design drawings will illustrate the evolution of the Rococo style as it entered the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It will trace the movement’s birth, rebirth, and transformation across centuries and continents. Lalique’s objects will illustrate the chronological modifications to the Rococo style that occurred when elements were incorporated into the Art Nouveau style popular during the late 1800s and the Art Deco style of the 1920s.

Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum
2 East 91st Street

In Their Own Words

Francesco Salviati, Head and Shoulders of a Bearded Man (1540s), black chalk.

Courtesy Friedman Benda Gallery

Through 03.31.08
In Their Own Words

This exhibition features photography, sculpture, furniture, and architecture captioned by the artists’ own words. Each work has been selected for the way it questions accepted notions of politics, mass culture, or production. By exhibiting art and what is traditionally thought of as “design” together, the exhibition aims to dissolve the division between the fields and provoke the debate on the cultural significance and authority currently assigned to each.

Friedman Benda Gallery
515 West 26th Street

Demisch Danant
524 West 22nd Street

Parrish Art Museum

Exterior Rendering of The Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, NY. View from Montauk Highway.

© Herzog & de Meuron, 2007, courtesy The Architectural League of New York

Through 05.02.08
Studio as Muse: Herzog & de Meuron’s Design for the New Parrish Art Museum

Curated and installed by Pritzker Prize-winning Herzog & de Meuron, the exhibition displays 130 study models, material samples, and short videos detailing the firm’s design process for the new Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, NY. It is part of an ongoing series of exhibitions that investigate the design process of a single significant building. In revealing the different steps that architects take to arrive at a completed design, the exhibitions demystify for the public the way buildings are designed while serving as important learning tools for design professionals and students.

The Architectural League of New York
457 Madison Avenue

Flower House

Model of “Flower House,” Suiza, Switzerland.

Courtesy SANAA

03.28.08 through 06.15.08
SANAA: Works 1998 – 2008

Commissions and projects from the last decade by Kazuyo Sejima + Ryue Nishizawa / SANAA, designers of the new home of the New Museum of Contemporary Art, will be on display. Works include the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, and the Glass Pavilion at the Toledo Museum of Art. The exhibition will also provide an opportunity to understand the New Museum in the context of the firm’s work. The installation takes the form of an environment, rather than a traditional exhibition, exploiting and further exploring SANAA’s vision of the museum lobby as, in their words, “a kind of constantly animated public-private living room where visitors can look, eat, read, shop, discover, and reflect among new art and new ideas.”

The New Museum of Contemporary Art
235 Bowery

Habitable Sculpture

Habitable Sculpture, 2000, by Philip Johnson.

Courtesy of Antonio Nino Vendome, and the Kreeger Museum

Through 07.31.08
Phillip Johnson: Architecture as Art

This exhibition showcases the relationship between art and architecture as seen by Philip Johnson (1906-2005) in his late works (notably, Johnson designed The Kreeger Museum). From structured, twisting forms to softer, curving expressions produced in chain-link, fiberglass, or concrete, Johnson’s work of the 1990s and 2000s was often not only sculptured architecture, but can be considered sculpture itself. Curated by Hilary Lewis, a longtime interpreter of Johnson’s life and work, and designed by Wendy Evans Joseph Architecture, the exhibition will present visitors with the final chapter of Johnson’s long career.

Kreeger Museum
2401 Foxhall Road, NW in Washington, D.C.



The New York Philharmonic isn’t the only cultural institution making global impressions these days. AIANY is opening the Berlin-New York Dialogue exhibition this week at the German Architecture Center (DAZ). Also, China is in NYC, at the Center for Architecture, with the Building China: Five Projects, Five Stories and Co-Evolution: Danish/Chinese Collaboration on Sustainable Urban Development exhibitions.

– Jessica Sheridan, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP

Design Awards Return to Intimacy and Craft

Event: AIA New York Chapter 2008 Design Awards Symposium
Location: Center for Architecture, 02.25.08
Speakers: Architecture Jury: David Adjaye, RIBA — Adjaye/Associates (London); Will Bruder, AIA — President, Will Bruder + Partners (Phoenix); Ada Karmi-Melamede, AIA, IIA — Principal, Ada Karmi-Melamede Architects (Tel Aviv); Interior Architecture Jury: Pamela Babey — Co-founder, BAMO (San Francisco); Donna V. Robertson, FAIA — Dean, College of Architecture, Illinois Institute of Technology (Chicago); L. Paul Zajfen, AIA, RIBA — Principal, CO Architects (Los Angeles); Projects Jury: Terry Dwan — Designer, Riva 1920 (Milan); Karen McEvoy, MRIAI, NCARB — Director, Bucholz McEvoy Architects (Dublin); Luigi Prestinenza Puglisi — Architecture Critic, Instituto Nazionale d’Architecttura (Rome)
Moderator: Hillary Ballon — Associate Vice Chancellor for New York University Abu Dhabi
Organizers: AIANY Design Awards Committee
Sponsors: Benefactors: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; Syska Hennessy Group; Patrons: HDR|Daniel Frankfurt; HOK; Langan Engineering & Environmental Services; Richter + Ratner; Lead Sponsors: Arup; Gensler; KI; Lutron Electronics; Mancini Duffy; RMJM Hillier; Thornton-Tomasetti; Sponsors: Armstrong World Industries; Atkinson Koven Feinberg Engineers; Cosentini Associates; FXFOWLE Architects; JCJ Architecture; MechoShade Systems; New York University; Pei Cobb Freed & Partners; Peter Marino Architect; Ricci Greene Associates; Swanke Hayden Connell Architects; Toshiko Mori Architect; Turner Construction Company; Weidlinger Associates

Design Awards

Courtesy AIANY

If the 2008 AIANY Design Awards are a measure of what is currently pushing the envelope of design, then it is material, craft, and context that define the cutting-edge. The “Academy Awards of Architecture,” as referred to by 2008 AIANY President, Jim McCullar, FAIA, in his introduction, jurors worked by consensus, sifting through entries in the categories of Architecture, Interior Architecture, and Projects to select new ideas that challenge the status quo. Although the distinguished and international jurors were different in each category, it was the three themes that permeated all of the projects that led to the winning designs.

With only one Honor Award in architecture, the jury was strict about choosing a project that signaled a direction outside of the norm. It was the use of technology in a restrained, edited manner that swayed the judges to select The addition to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, MO, designed by Steven Holl Architects. Ordinary building materials, such as translucent glass, were incorporated in a unique way that the judges felt had not been seen before. The building has a clear, orchestrated sequence of spaces; the landscape is seamless with the building; and the human scale and touch are evident throughout.

Projects that reclaimed existing spaces with sensitivity to history, context, and the relation to the street and architecture garnered awards from the Interior Architecture jurors. They selected projects for Honor Awards that were mostly small-scale and incorporated a variety of materials. Banchet Flowers in NYC, designed by De-Spec Inc./Vista Engineering, for example, preserved the historic fabric of the existing Meatpacking District warehouse, but opened the façade to pedestrians. Architecture Research Office received praise for its insightful yet witty take on program, specifically in planning how students study in lounge areas, in The Susan P. and Richard A. Friedman Study Center in Providence, RI. The attention to detail and respect for Louis Kahn won honor for the Yale University Art Gallery Media Lounge, designed by Joel Sanders Architect.

Ecology, novelty, and layered complexity drove the Projects jury to select six Honor Award-winning submissions. They were looking for projects that transcended new technology, projects that did not just use technology to create spectacle. They were drawn to projects in urban conditions, challenging how parks can be used in existing conditions. Whether the project is small (BEATFUSE! by OBRA Architects or Waterfront Tower by Cook + Fox Architects) or large in scale (Toshiko Mori Architect’s Syracuse Center of Excellence in Environmental and Energy Systems or Governors Island Redevelopment by West 8/Rogers Marvel Architects/Diller Scofidio + Renfro/Quennell Rothschild & Partners/SMWM), or whether the project is sited in a challenging environment (Leeser Architecture’s World Mammoth and Permafrost Museum) or leisurely (ELV Winery by David Yum Architects), it communicates the in-depth research and methodology necessary to make the project successful.

While all the winning projects deserve their honors, jurors had some reservations about the entries as a whole. Although they sought sustainable projects, they were surprised at how few had applied for LEED certification. Interior Architecture juror L. Paul Zajfen, AIA, RIBA, felt that there is still a long way to go before the quality of green design is worth a design award. Just because a project is green, he argued, does not mean it is good enough to win an award. Architecture juror Ada Karmi-Melamede, AIA, IIA, was disappointed that out of the near 5,000 AIANY members, only approximately 400 submissions were received. “We lack a serious dialogue about our profession,” she said. Without conversation, the bar will never get raised. Too many firms play it safe, agreed fellow Architecture juror Will Bruder, AIA. In post 9/11 society, he continued, architects seem to be afraid to create something that has never been seen before.

For a full list of honor and merit awards, go to the Names in the News section.

War-Torn Rwanda Emerges as Model for Urban Planning

Event: Reimagining Risk: Rwanda
Location: The Urban Center, 02.28.08
Speakers: Alfred Ndabarasa — Second Counselor, Republic of Rwanda’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations; Carl Worthington, AIA, ASLA — Director of Planning and Urban Design, OZ Architecture (Colorado); Cathy Leslie, P.E. — Civil Engineer, Tetra Tech & Executive Director, Engineers Without Borders-USA
Moderator: Andrew Blum — Journalist, Contributing Editor, Metropolis & Wired
Organizers: The Architectural League of New York

Kigali Master Plan

Existing conditions in the Gitega community (left), and neighborhood opportunities possible with improved infrastructure and surgical master planning (right).

OZ Architecture

Emerging from its four-year war in 1994, Rwanda was saddled with the social memory of brutal genocide and devastation of the country’s already limited infrastructure and economy. Despite this, a decade of quick recovery saw reconciliation, increase of GDP to prewar levels, rapid population growth, and a return to democratic political structures.

The new government moved to tackle problems created by the rapid urbanization of the capital, Kigali, which had expanded from a population of 6,000 in 1962 to almost 1,000,000 today. The plan, called Vision 2020, forecasts a strong Rwanda with solid institutions, tough on corruption, democratically decentralized, focused on developing human capacity, and equitable to men and women of all ethnic groups. The plan proposes that Rwanda become the transit hub of Africa, thanks to its central location.

OZ Architecture was selected to provide what would amount to a country-wide urban plan, encompassing urban planning in the Kigali city center, land management planning in the northern and southern wildlife preserves, transportation and energy management, and ecological mapping of watersheds and natural/agricultural uses. The team needed to provide not just design expertise, but also to create public-policy solutions to the myriad of problems common to many developing nations.

Watersheds will play an important part in new urban forms. The plan for Kigali and other proposed satellite centers calls for efficient use of land that doesn’t interfere with runoff and handles drinking water and effluent through natural processes. Part of the proposal addresses the shortage of energy and water through the recycling of waste in biogas generators. The proposals for city living are an evolution of existing town development patterns rather than a redesign imposing foreign cultural values.

The OZ team’s work has reached from the very large scale, such as the newly planned Bugesera International Airport, to the exceedingly mundane, such as the design of a new type of brick that can be produced locally and frees individuals from the need to procure expensive factory-produced building materials for their homes. The integration of these scales will provide an efficient resolution to the problems facing the country, as the multiplicity of individuals working at the small scale will have a collective positive effect on the ecology of the country and the quality of life of its citizens, while macro projects will link the new structures with regional neighbors and the international community.