News
12.30.2011
2011 in Review> Midwest Editors' Picks
A chronology of top stories from the pages of The Architect's Newspaper.
New development on Cincinnati's waterfront.
Courtesy Castelli Management

In spite of a sluggish economy, in 2011 the Midwest continued to be a place for leading-edge urban and architectural ideas. Highlights from AN’s coverage include right-sizing a shrinking Detroit, a concrete icon in peril, Chicago’s bike and pedestrian program, permeable streets in Kansas City, and grand new waterfronts in Minneapolis and Cincinnati. Also, a Chicago great gets star treatment at the Art Institute and a mid century residential masterpiece opens to the public. We also look at the people and politics behind two of architecture’s top prizes, both based in Chicago.

COURTESY LANDMARKS ILLINOIS
 
 

03.03.2011

PRENTICE TOWER IN CRITICAL CONDITION

Design community rallies round Goldberg's threatened Chicago icon: Apart from stints at Harvard, the Bauhaus, and a few years in the office of Mies van der Rohe, Bertrand Goldberg was a Chicagoan all the way. Whether or not the city will return the architect’s dedication remains to be seen.

Bruce Damonte
 
 

03.30.2011

RIVERFRONT REBOOT

Bi-coastal team to redesign stretch of the Minneapolis riverfront: With active and abandoned industrial sites, rail lines, a commercial port, and a highway, the Minneapolis riverfront is physically and psychologically separated from the lives of most residents. That is changing thanks to a recent competition conducted by the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board and other partners. On February 10, they named Berkeley, California-based landscape architects Tom Leader Studio and Boston-based Kennedy & Violich Architects (TLS/KVA) as the team charged with masterplanning and redesigning 5.5 miles of the Mississippi riverfront.

Montage by The Architect's Newspaper
 
 

04.19.2011

FEATURE> EYES ON THE PRIZE

Chicago is home to two of the profession's leading architecture awards, the Pritzker, often called the Nobel of architecture, and the Driehaus, a $200,000 award that promotes classical architecture and urbanism. Alan G. Brake listens in on the deliberations: The stated purpose of the Pritzker Architecture Prize is “to honor a living architect whose built work demonstrates a combination of those qualities of talent, vision, and commitment, which has produced consistent and significant contributions to humanity and the built environment through the art of architecture.” Widely held to be the world’s most prestigious architecture award, the Pritzker now shares a hometown with another significant award, the Richard H. Driehaus Award, which advocates for a very different approach to architecture and comes with a purse twice the size.

COURTESY IMA
 
 

05.25.2011

FEATURE> MID-CENTURY TIME CAPSULE

The Miller House in Columbus, Indiana is famed as the collaborative achievement of three great design talents of the 20th century. Open to the public for the first time, Alan G. Brake steps inside to see how it has endured: An invitation to the Miller House in Columbus, Indiana was something that architects coveted. Now the public can see what all the fuss was about. Following the death of Mrs. J. Irwin Miller in 2008, the Miller family donated the time capsule of a house, along with a partial endowment, to the Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA), giving public access to this master work of modernist residential architecture designed by Eero Saarinen, with gardens by Dan Kiley, and interior design by Alexander Girard.

KANSAS CITY, MO OVERFLOW CONTROL PLAN
 
 

06.03.2011

OVERFLOWING WITH IDEAS

Kansas City neighborhood debuts green streets stormwater management pilot: The beginning of June marked the official launch of the Middle Blue River Green Solution Pilot Project. The $9.2 million project covering approximately 100 acres of southeast Kansas City, Missouri's Marlborough neighborhood is the first phase of the City's $2.5 billion, 25-year storm-water management implementation plan.

DAVID SCHALLIOL
 
 

06.09.2011

CHICAGO'S EMERALD BRACELET

Rahm Emanuel makes Bloomingdale Trail a first-term priority: Among the many promises coming from the new Emanuel administration is one to the make elevated Bloomingdale Trail a reality. The mayor has promised full support for Chicago’s Bike Plan and that includes completing the 2.65-mile trail by the end of the first term. The bike transportation—as well as pedestrian—aspect of the trail may help it qualify for monies with the reauthorization of the 2005 Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient, Transportation Equity Act (SAFETEA), the federal transportation bill.

COURTESY VOICE OF DETROIT
 
 

08.09.2011

SIZING UP A SMALLER DETROIT

Mayor Bing announces progress on plan to shrink city: Following several months of negative press and setbacks for the Detroit Works Project—Mayor Dave Bing’s urban design initiative to reshape the city—Bing held a press conference on July 27 to announce a series of short-term interventions. The city will launch initiatives in three demonstration areas—neighborhoods ranging from 1,400 to 3,000 acres—and will release a new analysis on the progress in six months.

COURTESY CASTELLI MANAGEMENT
 
 

09.22.2011

DOWN BY THE RIVERSIDE

New Cincinnati neighborhood addresses old planning woes: A neighborhood is born in Cincinnati. After a decade of debate, financing, design, and construction, phase one of The Banks—arguably one of the country’s most ambitious urban design projects—is nearly complete. When finished, the 18-acre mixed-use development will add nearly three million square feet of building to long vacant land between Cincinnati’s Central Business District and the Ohio River.

ANDREW BOSSI / FLICKR
 
 

10.18.2011

BIKER TOWN

Chicago to roll out 3,000 cycles to share by 2012: Chicago’s transit system has long helped commuters navigate the city, but a new bike-share program announced by the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) will help fill in short-distance gaps between trains and buses. Bike sharing allows riders to check out a bike at one location and deposit it at another and is seen as a supplement to existing transportation networks. The proposed system calls for an initial run of 3,000 bikes to be distributed over 300 stations increasing to 5,000 bikes and 500 stations over the following two years. Stations will be located around existing transit stops and in densely populated areas of the city.

COURTESY AIC
 
 

11.16.2011

REVIEW> GOLDBERG GOLDMINE

Bertrand Goldberg: Architecture of Invention at the Art Institute of Chicago through January 15: Bertrand Goldberg: Architecture of Invention is the first retrospective of the Chicago architect’s work, and it is the Art Institute's bid to add Goldberg to the architectural pantheon. Primarily, though, it offers an opportunity to portray Goldberg as more than a one trick pony. Like many creative people, Goldberg is inextricably connected to his most famous work, Chicago’s Marina City, which has proven a mixed blessing to his legacy. It’s noted for the idiosyncratic imagery of its cylindrical towers, but the organizers of this show might argue that this may be its least emblematic aspect. Marina City, and its designer’s work, are on the surface all about circular forms and structural concrete, but it and he are so much more.

 

The Editors