The public lend a hand at the launch of the London Festival of Architecture

The public lend a hand at the launch of the London Festival of Architecture

Foster + Partners successfully built a conical structure, interwoven with fabric panels hand-printed by the public to kick off the Kensington and Chelsea hub of the London Festival of Architecture on 21 June. A focal point of the Exhibition Road Festival, the tensile structure was hauled into place with a tug-of-war rope by the public at 2pm. More than 4,000 visitors walked through the ten metre-high structure in the afternoon and enjoyed its sound installation by Bill Fontana. Overall turnout on the day was high – more than 30,000 visitors were reported at the event.

SOURCE: Foster + Partners.

Something from Nothing – Sasaki Feaure in The Boston Globe

Why would a company want employees diving into its trash bins? Because at Sasaki Associates, one of the country’s hottest landscape and urban-design firms that’s shaping the Olympic village in Beijing, life is all about salvaging good from bad.

FOREST PARK IS A LARGE GREEN space on the northern fringes of the Beijing Olympic site, home to this summer’s Games. It may also become the defining project for this 55-year-old team of urban and strategic planners, building and landscape architects, engineers, and graphic designers that specializes in turning bad land into something special. It was back on a Sunday in July 2002 when a young landscape architect fluent in Chinese ran into the office of Sasaki Associates president Dennis Pieprz, screaming, “We won, we won.”

Read more @ the SOURCE: The Boston Globe – Something from Nothing 

Is it time for ‘Toronto, the Green?’ – TheStar.com

Politicians, business leaders and advocacy groups across the GTA will launch a plan tomorrow to make this the greenest urban region in the world.

“It’s amazing. Everyone believes this is an idea whose time has come,” says Eva Ligeti, who heads the non-profit Clean Air Partnership.

“Greening Greater Toronto” will aim to co-ordinate work for cleaner air and water, better transit and land use, and other environmental improvements, Ligeti says.

In part, it is to build on the environmental work going on in the city. It will emulate the Toronto Atmospheric Fund – which parlayed $23 million from the city into a revolving fund that bankrolls climate change projects – if, that is, the new scheme gets $100 million from the province or elsewhere.

SOURCE: TheStar.com | Environment | Is it time for ‘Toronto, the Green?’.

An art center worth the climb – The Boston Globe

The Clark is one of the country’s best small art museums, and in Stone Hill Center, which opens today, it has added a wonderful piece of architecture.

The architect is Japan’s Tadao Ando, the 1995 winner of the Pritzker Prize, architecture’s equivalent of the Nobel. Stone Hill houses a mix of uses. The biggest chunk, which isn’t open to the public, is a conservation lab for the restoration of artworks. The lab occupies the lower of the building’s two levels, where it isn’t disturbed by unwanted direct sunlight.

Collaborating with Ando from the start was the Boston firm of Reed Hilderbrand, landscape architects. Their work is an essential foil for the architecture. Besides planning the paths and roads, they terraced a slope above Stone Hill into a green parking lot and planted some 300 new trees. Especially successful is the meadow below Stone Hill Center, where the grass is left wild and unmowed. It waves in the wind like an ocean, and the building’s triangular terrace pushes into it like the prow of a ship.

Read more @ the SOURCE: The Boston Globe An art center worth the climb 

Guest column: Don’t expect simple solutions to complexities of flooding – DesMoinesRegister.com | The Des Moines Register

DOUGLAS M. JOHNSTON is chair of the Department of Community and Regional Planning and of the Department of Landscape Architecture at ISU wrote a great article about the Iowa floods*

During and after any catastrophe, many will review the events and ask: Why did it happen and what can be done to prevent it? The ongoing flooding in Iowa is no exception.

…….we often fail to remember is that water flows downhill. It comes from somewhere, and it goes somewhere. Anything we do that affects the flow of water will have an impact further downstream. Prairie and forest are good at capturing rainfall. Tile-drained farm fields, roofs, roads, and parking lots are less so. With fewer wetlands, prairies and forest to slow runoff or prevent it, the same rain event will send more water downstream faster.

Read more @ the SOURCE: DesMoinesRegister.com – Guest column: Don’t expect simple solutions to complexities of flooding – The Des Moines Register.

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