Day of reckoning comes for Washington Square Park

GREENWICH VILLAGE. Robert Moses had to quit trying to remake Washington Square Park after decades of protest. Yet the Bloomberg administration is now closing in on Moses’ goal by keeping its redesign under wraps for nearly three years. The last of several lawsuits aimed at stopping the plan is expected to be decided today.

Assemblywoman Deborah Glick wrote Mayor Michael Bloomberg last month asking him to reconsider the plan in light of a process that “consistently attempted to circumvent any type of exchange with the community.” Last May, Community Board 2 rescinded its approval, saying it hadn’t seen an “accurate” design. This claim was backed up by a state appeals court, which acknowledged “essential aspects” were not disclosed but let the city proceed. patrick arden / metro new york

Landscape architect to head Ann Arbor’s planning department

A 20-year landscape architect and veteran of two local private development services firms will take over a key role in Ann Arbor’s planning department starting on Dec. 3.Connie Pulcipher will become the city’s senior planner, filling a role that has been vacant since Coy Vaughn left for a job with Washtenaw County in the spring.

She will supervise five planners and a support staff, and her responsibilities will include site plans and planning reviews.  Ann Arbor Business Review

Planning Rwanda

Metropolis Magazine
‘Just before nine one morning in May, I arrived at the Alpha Palace Hotel, not far from the center of Kigali, the capital of Rwanda. A team of American architects waited nervously outside, dressed in blue suits and holding battered travel tubes of drawings. In them was the conceptual master plan for the future of Kigali: a sweeping vision to turn today’s red-dirt ad-hoc city into a verdant capital with tree-lined boulevards, mixed-use neighborhoods, a new university, parks, and a network of wetlands to mitigate storm-water runoff. OZ Architecture, from Denver, along with EDAW, a landscape-architecture and urban-planning firm, had been quietly working on the scheme for three years. This morning, 13 years after Rwanda’s genocide, they would present it to an audience of local planning officials, foreign consultants, and politicians. I had come to watch, to see what American-style urban planning looked like in Rwanda, and what it could possibly do to help transform a place of poverty and struggle into one of prosperity and peace.’ more at Metropolis Magazine

2014 Games offer a chance to rejuvenate Glasgow

Glasgow is to be the host city for the 2014 Commonwealth Games, signifying potential new opportunities for architects and regeneration in parts of the city.

RMJM in Glasgow has worked with Glasgow City Council on the masterplan for the Athletes’ Village, part of which will be converted into a mixture of private and social housing for the East End of the City once the games are over.

UK Design Director of RMJM, Paul Stallan, said: “I am absolutely delighted at the announcement, and to have been part of the Commonwealth bid for Glasgow, one of the most exciting, design led cities in the world. The Games will contribute to the city’s future architectural legacy by regenerating the East End and bringing lasting benefit to the City.” more at ArchitectureScotland

Design at heart of sustainable Wales

DEVELOPERS should push the boundaries of design to help Wales achieve its sustainable development goals, the new development director of the Design Commission for Wales has said.

Wendy Richards, an experienced urban designer and landscape architect, has been involved in delivering a diverse portfolio of high profile design projects, ranging from a major urban park development in Hong Kong’s New Territories to the Riverfront Theatre in Newport as part of a team at Austin-Smith: Lord.

She has spent the last three years working with Newport City Council and Newport Unlimited as their principal urban designer and has worked within the private and public sectors over a number of years, as well as being a voluntary member of the Design Commission’s own Design Review Panel. more at westernmail