Foundation Gives 2011 Douglas Haskell Award to Student Journals

From the architecture student journals Contexture and Root.


The Center for Architecture Foundation is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2011 Douglas Haskell Award for Student Journals. This year the Scholarship Committee awarded Contexture, of Louisiana State University (LSU), a student-run architecture journal, which aims to promote an appreciation for architecture among the LSU community. Contributors of Contexture include students enrolled in LSU’s BArch and MArch programs, as well as alumni, LSU faculty, and local professionals. Previously, Contexture applied for the Douglas Haskell award for Student Journals in 2009 and received Honorable Mention. Read the winning issue of the Haskell Award Contexture: freshly cut.

The Scholarship Committee also awarded Colorado University at Denver’s landscape architecture journal Root with Honorable Mention. Root, which is entirely run by both current and former students of University of Colorado at Denver’s Department of Landscape Architecture, began to create an open dialogue between landscape architecture students and the professional community. Read Honorable Mention recipient Root: Resourceful Obstacles or learn more about Root at

The Douglas Haskell Award for Student Journals was founded to encourage student journalism on architecture, planning, and related subjects, and to foster regard for intelligent criticism among future professionals. The award is named for architectural journalist and editor Douglas Haskell, who is best known for being the editor of Architectural Forum from 1949-1964.

The next Center for Architecture scholarship deadline is for The Stewardson Keefe LeBrun Travel Grant on 11.01.11, which was established to further the personal and professional development of an architect in early or mid-career through travel. For application details as well as information regarding other awards that the Center for Architecture offers, visit the Center for Architecture Foundation’s website:

Designers Dream About Houses for a Not-So-New Role Model

Although you can’t take the AIA Barbie Dream House Design Competition seriously, I appreciate the overarching goal of the “I can be…” Barbie doll series — to encourage young girls to follow their career dreams. Whether it’s a veterinarian, computer engineer, preschool teacher, or now architect, Mattel seems to be answering to the generation of feminist mothers (including my own) who refused to buy the ill-proportioned dolls for fear that their daughters would have poor self-esteem.

With the ideas competition to redesign Barbie’s Malibu Dream House, the very daughters (and sons) of those feminists who have grown up to become career women (and men) in the design field jumped at the chance to relive their childhoods and imagine what it would be like to have Barbie as a client. After receiving nearly 30 submissions, jurors have selected their top five. Now, the public has until 08.02.11 to vote on a winner.

As I looked at the final designs, I enjoyed imagining Barbie trying to live a more sustainable life. The entries bring to light some of the complexities of dealing with a client such as Barbie, who aspires to lead a greener life, yet has three cars, a pet giraffe, and, of course, an enormous designer clothing collection. One team ignored the program choosing to give Barbie a scooter for transportation. None of the designs incorporate an elevator, despite the program requirement, opting instead to focus the budget on strategies like solar panels and green roofs. A couple of the entries make it a point that Architect Barbie is the actual designer of the house. And not only is she an AIA member, but she is also a LEED AP (what a role model!).

My favorite design selected color palettes based on artwork by famous women. The living room takes cue from Lee Krasner and Helen Frankethaler. A recycled glass counter mimics a Louise Bourgeois in the kitchen. Glass tiles in the bathroom were inspired by Georgia O’Keefe. In the bedroom, the rug and chair selection was inspired by none other than Totally Hair Barbie.

I look forward to seeing the results of the competition. Hopefully Mattel will take to heart some of the sustainability goals that were required of the entries.

The NYC Brownfield Partnership announced the winners of the third annual Big Apple Brownfield Awards, including Atlantic Terrace, Green Building Award, and La Terraza, Affordable Housing Award, both by Magnusson Architecture & Planning; New Fulton Fish Market, Sustainable Remediation Award; Harlem River Yards, Economic Development Award; and Pratt Institute’s Myrtle Hall by WASA/Studio A, Collaboration Award…

The League of Historic American Theatres presented its 2011 Outstanding Individual Contribution Award to Jeff Greene, President of EverGreene Architectural Arts…

The Switzer Group has named Louis Villafane as its Managing Principal… John Sadlon has been appointed Managing Principal of Mancini Duffy’s NY Office… MKDA has promoted Edin Rudic to the newly created position of creative director…

Dagmar Richter has been named chair of Pratt Institute’s Undergraduate Architecture Department… Wendy Moonan will serve as Senior Contributing Editor and Alexa Stevenson as Consulting Senior Editor of VandM’s on-line magazine DESIGNinTELL…

2011 OCULUS 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 want to hear from you! Projects/topics may be anywhere, but architects must be New York-based. Please submit story ideas by the deadlines indicated below to Kristen Richards.

2011 Themes:
Spring (President’s Theme): Design for a Change: Buildings, People, Energy

Summer: AIANY Design Awards 2011

Fall: Interior Activity

Winter: Up, Down, and Sideways: Density and Transportation
Density enabled by transportation: mass transit, cycling; Moynihan Station; Regional connections; Housing Authority: former purposeful disconnect, now reintegrating back into neighborhoods; How a century of New York skyscrapers has/is/will affect the architecture, planning, and culture of the city and the world.
Submit story ideas by 08.19.11

For further information, contact OCULUS Editor: Kristen Richards.

07.31.11 [Deadline Extended] Call for Submissions: By the City / For the City

08.01.11 Call for Entries: AIA Barbie Dream House Design Competition

08.05.11 Call for Entries: New York New Work 2011 Subway Exhibition

08.05.11 Call for Case Studies: SUSTAINABILITY BY DESIGN- Meeting the 2030 Challenge!

08.06.11 Call for Photographs: AIA West Jersey’s 6th Annual Photography Competition

08.12.11 Call for Entries: [Hong Kong] Alternative Car Park Tower

08.26.11 Call for Entries: 2012 AIA Honor Awards

08.31.11 Call for Entries: Architect Magazine 2011 Annual Design Review

09.06.11 Call for Entries: 25th Annual Mockett Design Competition

09.16.11 Call for Entries: Venier Design Awards — “The Art of Enjoyable Living”

10.01.11 Call for Entries: Sustainable & Modular School for Burmese Migrant and Refugee Children Open International Design Competition

06.06-08.11: The Atelier Projet Urbain/Urban Design Workshop “New York, Stratégies et Régulation Métropolitaine/The New York Metropolis: Strategies and Urban Regulation” was a two-day event featuring programs and projects in NYC. Five panels discussed the experience and vision of public officials, designers, private operators, and civic leaders.

(L-R): Jean-Louis Cohen, Sheldon H. Solow, Professor in the History of Architecture at New York University; Amanda M. Burden, FAICP, Hon. AIANY, Chair of the NYC Planning Commission and Director of the Department of City Planning; Adrian Benepe, Commissioner New York City Department of Parks & Recreation; and Ariella Masboungi, General Advisor for Sustainable Development Ministry of Ecology for France speak at the Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture of The Cooper Union.

Barbara Chénot Camus

AIANY Executive Director Rick Bell, FAIA, led a tour of Lower Manhattan, while Masboungi and Michael Arad, AIA, look at the 9/11 National Memorial construction site from the 10th floor of 7 WTC.

Tom McWilliam

Masboungi with Craig Copeland of Pelli Clarke Pelli at the green roof of the Visionaire.

Barbara Chénot Camus

Attendees enjoyed a dinner boat cruise around Manhattan.

Barbara Chénot Camus

An event was held in the honor of Mark di Suvero (pictured with Rick Bell, FAIA) celebrating the installation of several of his large-scale sculptures on Governors Island, sponsored by Storm King Art Center and on view through 09.25.11.

Susannah C. Drake, ASLA, AIA

06.12.11: The Philip Johnson Glass House fêted its fifth anniversary in culinary style at Dine with Design.

Ricardo Scofidio and Elizabeth Diller of Diller, Scofidio + Renfro, pictured in front of Philip Johnson’s Library/Study at the Philip Johnson Glass House site.

Tom McWilliam

07.06.11: In celebration of the 200th anniversary of the Manhattan Grid, “Mapping the Cityscape,” an exhibition at the Center for Architecture, focuses on the ways in which mapping influences our perception of the environment. It is on view through 9.27.11.

Maps on display from 1609-2011 depict ecological, historic, transportation, planning, cultural, and civic data.

Kathy Kia

Curators/Exhibition Designers Seetha Raghupathy and Abby Suckle, FAIA.

Kathy Kia

07.14.11: Opening of “New Practices São Paulo,” the most recent juried portfolio competition and exhibition of the biennial tradition hosted by the AIANY New Practices Committee. It will be on view at the Center for Architecture through 09.10.11.

Rick Bell, FAIA; Denise Hochbaum; Margaret Castillo, AIA, LEED AP; Jose Armenio de Brito Cruz at the NPSP opening reception.

Courtesy the Center for Architecture


07.07.11 Editor’s Note: With this issue, we are introducing a new sub-section to the “In the News” section. Check out “THIS JUST IN…” to read about announcements of new projects in NYC and by NYC-based firms. If you would like us to publish your firm’s new projects, please e-mail me the information at Any project in NYC or designed by NYC-based firms is welcome.

Also, now that it is summer, the NYC Architectural Boat Tours have resumed! Click here for more information and to sign up for the next tour.

– Jessica Sheridan, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP

Note: The digital edition of OCULUS magazine is online now! Click here to read.

Be sure to follow Tweets from e-Oculus and the Center for Architecture.

And check out the latest Podcasts produced by AIANY.

Aging Professionals Avoid "It Won't Happen to Us" Syndrome

Event: Aging-In-Place…(Aren’t We All?)
Location: Center for Architecture, 06.28.11
Speakers: Eric Cohen, AIA, NCIDQ — Senior Associate Principal, Ethelind Coblin Architect & Faculty, New York School of Interior Design; Rosemary Bakker, MA, ASID — Research Associate in Gerontologic Design in Medicine, Weill Medical College of Cornell University
Moderator: Ellen Fisher, PhD, ASID — Interim Dean, New York School of Interior Design
Introduction: Elizabeth Murray — Interior Designer & Aging-in-Place Consultant
Organizer: AIANY Design for Aging Committee

Our aging population is increasing and will continue to become a higher proportion of our total population as more Baby Boomers reach senior status in the next two decades. It is said that every eight seconds an American turns 65. Thus, we need to plan to accommodate a large number of people with a range of limited physical capabilities so they can continue to lead productive, independent lives. Panelists emphasized that we must become more realistic, overcome the “it won’t happen to us” syndrome, and engage in planning for our own futures, as well as those of our clients.

Designing to make our environments more age-friendly is beneficial not only for seniors, but for people of all ages, including mothers with young children and individuals with a variety of physical disabilities. There are numerous ongoing efforts in the U.S. and in other countries to increase awareness of the needs of seniors, many of which are focused on incorporating amenities into living arrangements that allow seniors to remain in their own homes or neighborhoods, rather than relocating them to assisted living facilities or nursing homes. This makes economic sense for our society and fulfills the preferences of most seniors to stay in their familiar communities.

The aim is a combination of independence and interdependence, and is especially workable in an urban environment where many services are available in reasonable proximity to homes. Eric Cohen, AIA, NCIDQ, senior associate principal at Ethelind Coblin Architect, and Rosemary Bakker, MA, ASID, research associate in gerontologic design in medicine at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University, presented several examples:

· Family-type Small Homes, permitted by recent legislation in NY State, where up to four unrelated individuals can live together, each in his/her own bedroom, with shared common spaces. A live-in caregiver, who may be of a similar age as the residents, provides necessary assistance. This mode of living promotes friendship among strangers, and eliminates feelings of isolation that often affect seniors.

· The “Greenhouse” Model, , a larger group home to accommodate about 10 residents plus staff.

· A 21st century version of the Granny Flat,, designed specifically for seniors, in close proximity to living quarters of others who can provide assistance when needed. Permission to allow this may require changes in local zoning regulations.

· Co-Housing, where a group of friends or strangers with a shared mission, often including several generations, design a living community consisting of private and shared spaces for themselves. Each individual performs services that result in the operation of a co-operative community. This approach can be applied to the renovation of an existing urban building or to totally new construction.

Existing apartments and houses can be made more convenient for everyone through the use of a number of strategies: color and appropriately-sized fonts and icons to highlight the controls of household appliances; textures to appeal to the sense of touch (certain textiles can incorporate bio-monitors to track residents’ vital signs and send data to their physicians); lighting from multiple sources to avoid glare, prevent falls, and emphasize grab bars and kitchen and bathroom facilities; daylighting and light-transmitting surfaces to foster a sense of orientation; patterns that are not confusing, especially on floors/carpets; magnetic cooking systems that heat only the food in the pan, not the pan itself or the stove; non-slippery surfaces in bathrooms and kitchens; roll-in showers without curbs; and lever faucets.

AARP and other organizations are currently conducting research to determine the effectiveness of some of these innovative solutions being developed and applied. A “Compendium of Community Aging Initiatives” was published in March 2010 by the Center for the Advanced Study of Aging Services at the School of Social Welfare, University of California at Berkeley.

In this issue:
· Chelsea Tenement Transforms into a Modern School
· Vivid Colors Brighten Children’s Hospital Experience
· Dinner, a Movie, and an Apartment in Williamsburg
· Surfing Museum Evokes the Sky & Sea

Chelsea Tenement Transforms into a Modern School

Corlears School.


The renovation and expansion of the 22,000-square-foot Corlears School, a Pre-K through Fifth Grade independent school located in Chelsea, has been completed by FXFOWLE. Initially built in 1905 as a tenement, the building was converted into a school in the 1970s and has since undergone several piecemeal renovations. After acquiring an adjacent property the interiors and structural systems of the existing building were brought up to current fire, life safety, and accessibility codes, and re-configured to blend with the new. Additional classrooms were added, with open areas, or “piazzas,” connecting classrooms on each floor to encourage student interaction. Existing foundation and bearing walls were structurally reinforced to support an additional floor for a gymnasium and a green roof in the future.

Vivid Colors Brighten Children’s Hospital Experience

Alexandra and Steven Cohen Children’s Emergency Department.

©Paúl Rivera/archphoto

The new $50 million Alexandra and Steven Cohen Children’s Emergency Department at the New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, designed by Aedas in collaboration with Swarthmore-based associate architect Poltronieri Tang, recently opened. Located in Washington Heights, the 25,000-square-foot facility — one of only three Level I Pediatric Trauma Centers in NY State — is equipped to care for 60,000 children annually. The department has 26 private treatment rooms, two trauma rooms, four triage rooms, an asthma treatment area, onsite radiology, a laboratory, and pharmacy. A mechanical system affords department-wide isolation and purge capabilities in the event of an airborne catastrophic or infectious event. Instead of a large public waiting room, the facility has a group of smaller seating nooks located close to treatment rooms with family reading areas, a multimedia interactive wall, and game tables. Treatment rooms have floor-to-ceiling illustrations from familiar children’s literature, and the entryway features colorful murals by Sol LeWitt.

Dinner, a Movie, and an Apartment in Williamsburg

Nitehawk Cinema.

Courtesy of Nitehawk Cinema (exterior); photo by Pedro Feria Pino (interior)

Nitehawk Cinema recently opened in a renovated two-story, mid-century brick warehouse in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The complex, designed by Caliper Studio, features three theaters all with tableside food service, a café/bar at street level, and an L-shaped, three-story addition containing nine rental apartments. All of the apartments have access to outdoor space. The units on the top floor have private roof decks while the lower level apartments have access to a raised courtyard on the roof of the cinema. The 23,000-square-foot building features a custom zinc panel façade on the three upper stories with 2,000 cast glass disks backlit by LEDs arrayed in an irregular pattern. The project involved extensive coordination to thread the new structure, elevators, scissor stair, and mechanical systems through the existing two-story building.

Surfing Museum Evokes the Sky & Sea

Cité de l’Océan et du Surf.

©Iwan Baan

The Cité de l’Océan et du Surf, designed by Steven Holl Architects in collaboration with artist and designer Solange Fabião, recently opened in Biarritz, France (one of the world’s premiere surfing destinations). The more than 40,000-square-foot project incorporates textured white concrete made with local aggregates. Exhibition spaces, a plaza, and gardens that fuse landscape and architecture connect the museum to the ocean horizon. The building’s form derives from the spatial concept “under the sky/under the sea.” A concave “under the sky” shape creates a central gathering plaza, while the convex structural ceiling forms the “under the sea” exhibition spaces that explore the leisure and scientific aspects of both surf and sea. The public plaza features two “glass boulders” that contain a restaurant and the surfer’s kiosk; the plaza paving is a variation of Portuguese cobblestone that allows grass and natural vegetation to permeate and grow.


New York University has selected EYP Architecture & Engineering and Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates to design a new home for NYU’s College of Nursing, provide expanded facilities for the College of Dentistry and space for a multi-school bioengineering program.

Steven Holl Architects, in collaboration with VA-based BCWH Architects, has been selected to design the new Institute for Contemporary Art at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond.

CetraRuddy has been selected to design the interiors for Tommy Lasagna, a new Italian Restaurant in Gramercy Park.

The NYC School Construction Authority has selected Dattner Architects to design a new P.S./I.S. school within Extell’s Riverside Center Development.

The Westmoreland Museum of American Art in Greensburg, PA, has selected Ennead Architects to design its expansion and renovation.

Perkins Eastman has been selected to design a mixed-use building that will include the DREAM Charter School, affordable housing, and space for Harlem RBI, an organization that provides academic, sports, and enrichment programs, located on the site of the Washington Houses in East Harlem.

In this issue:
· Passing: George M. White, FAIA
· AIA Announces Database of Stalled Construction Projects
· Call for Projects, Tours: Ninth Annual OHNY Weekend
· e-Calendar

Passing: George M. White, FAIA
George M. White, FAIA, former Architect of the Capitol, passed away on 06.23.11. AIA President Clark Manus, FAIA, issued an announcement stating: “As the Architect of the Capitol for nearly a quarter-century, George White demonstrated the value of an architect’s thinking and judgment in everything he did. His accomplishments are far too many to list here, but include the restoration of the West Front of the Capitol, the restoration of the Old Senate Chamber and the development of the Capitol Master plan.”

AIA Announces Database of Stalled Construction Projects
The AIA announced a collaboration with the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) to build a database of stalled construction projects throughout the U.S. during the first annual CGI America conference in Chicago. The database will identify projects worthy of investor financing, based on selected criteria, allowing projects to move forward despite the lack of lending from banks. When the database is compiled in the coming months, it will be a quick reference for investors, encouraging economic activity and job growth. For more information on the relationship between the architecture and construction industries, and economic activity, see the AIA White Paper “Architecture Billings as a Leading Indicator of Construction: Analysis of the Relationship Between a Billings Index and Construction Spending.”

Call for Projects, Tours: Ninth Annual OHNY Weekend
Openhousenewyork (OHNY) is holding its Ninth Annual OHNY Weekend, 10.15-16.11. Architects, designers, and engineers are encouraged to submit projects for participation in this public-access event. If you would like to open your office or project to the public, contact Jessica Mak

eCalendar includes an interactive listing of architectural events around NYC. Click the link to go to to eCalendar on the Web.