John King just keeps getting better and better. In his second Cityscapes volume, published by local treasure Heyday Books, he classifies fifty notable San Francisco buildings and spaces under the sobriquets of Towers, Connection, Clues and Waterfront. This builds on Volume 1’s Icons, Styles and Masters, Landscape, and Change (Cityscapes , San Francisco and Its Buildings, 2011). Another couple of volumes and we will have the complete ‘how to read a city.’Continue Reading Cityscapes 2: Reading the Architecture of San Francisco
Arts & Culture
Have you ever heard of Westlake Park? This was a park that was once referred to as “the most popular open-air resort in the city” (page 17 of Kevin Roderick’s book on Wilshire Boulevard). Opened in 1890, the park was loved by the people of Los Angeles and offered the perfect venue for leisurely strolls, boating in a lake, and popular Sunday concerts. The park was surrounded by luxury hotels and the area even became known as the Champs-Élysées of Los Angeles. You may be wondering, where is this great park and how come I have not been there yet? Continue Reading What about MacArthur Park?
The oldest river crossing in New York City is now the newest. The 1848 High Bridge that spans the Harlem River and links upper Manhattan to The Bronx has recently emerged from a multi-year, $61.8 million renovation. It re-opened to the public on June 9th. Whether the initial enthusiasm of using this restored public space can reenergize a neighborhood will take years to find out, however, for the moment this project is bringing tourists and residents to an area that was previously known only to locals and intrepid urban explorers. Will it spur new economic activity to an ungentrified area? Is that indeed what is wanted or needed? Questions to be answered later.Continue Reading The High Line? No, The High Bridge!
Are the San Diego National Football League (NFL) Chargers causing the San Diego State University Aztecs football team to lose games and fans? If so, which is worse for San Diego, losing its NFL franchise to another city, or sub-optimal performance and attendance at Aztecs football games?
While these question at first appear both absurd and provocative, there have been several studies that can answer these questions – at least to some degree. Moreover, the studies go further. Continue Reading Are the NFL Chargers causing the NCAA Aztecs to lose?
The City of San Diego at 1.3 million and counting according to 2014 data, and notably the 8th largest city in the country, is unique at best and honestly still a small town. Planners, politicians and policy makers to name just a few, are in constant pursuit of definition for this city and our region. Ironically, this pursuit has been going on for the past 100 years with the first Panama-California Exposition in 1915.Continue Reading What is San Diego’s identity?
- Of or relating to the habitat or environment.
- The doctrine, theory, or science of a subject.
- Branch of science concerned with the interrelationships of organisms and their environments, especially as manifested by the natural cycles and rhythms, community development and structure, interaction between different kinds of organisms, geographic distribution, and population alternatives.
- The totality or pattern of relations between organisms and their environments.
~ Webster’s New International Dictionary, 3rd ed., 1976
_____________________________________Continue Reading Reyner Banham, Mike Davis, and the Discourse on Los Angeles Ecology
When Art and Architecture meet.
As humans we are constantly overwhelmed and barraged by a multitude of advertisements in any graphic form. There is so much of it that when walking through a square (Times Square is probably the epitome) we are tempted to forget that the space is formed by architectures of any kind.Continue Reading An Architectural Play – Theatrical Architecture
Well, 2015 is almost gone (“The glass is half empty”) and my new year’s resolution was to, in some way, generate publicity about the 100 year birthday of the UC Berkeley Campanile. As an alumni of such a great school I have created the above symbolic comic strip titled “Identity.” I identify myself as an alumni but my identity goes far beyond just where I went to school. I also identify myself as a Nigerian–American designer who believes that “great design can save humanity.” That said, my design philosophy tends to incorporate three nouns that begin with the letter T: Tradition, Technique, and Technology; which, I feel, are also crucial aspects of defining identity in design.Continue Reading Identity (Comic Strip)
Over the weekend I was glad to do my monthly architecture tour through Los Angeles and Orange County. On my tour I was in search of grey flames, hot emerging materials and textures that exist within a grayscale spectrum but are much more vibrant than mundane. I analyzed and criticized aluminum, zinc, metal, grey paint, grey concrete, etc, and found these images (below) as a result, enjoy!Continue Reading Grey Flames: Aluminum Photo Blog
“ What do Shaq’s party shoes and the Dodger’s Stadium have in common?… they both have similar square feet.”
As a fan of square foot ‘dress’ shoes, I believe the historic link between shoe fashion and multifamily architecture to be quite interesting. On the accompanying image there is an implicit link between the hidden keystone and selling the image of ‘great arch support’ that transforms a solid column into a horizontal billboard.Continue Reading Of Cents and Ratios