Categories
Architecture urbanism

Making cities by people

Inspired by a prompt from the Jan Gehl Institute, Charlotte asked me about cities on one of our morning walks. This is what I had to say. CG: How do you make cities for people? IH: Well, first of all, I don’t think it’s enough to say ‘make cities for people.’ You have to make […]

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Architecture

Time Management

My mother forwarded me this Dezeen article from a week ago. It was oddly coincidental, because at an office happy hour just a week before we had talked about the tricky balance, which all architects strive to find, between being productive and being creative. In fact, it is famously sensitive and controversial, especially when discussed […]

Categories
Architecture urbanism

Living facades

I. Proximity On a hot Friday afternoon, I was walking downhill toward the Hudson River through the Upper West Side with Alba and Josep, my friends from Barcelona. I was describing the peculiar kind of density found there: the neighborhood is a great example of how even 100 years ago Americans were able to build […]

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Architecture

The Ghost of Ebenezer Howard

My gut feeling is that, like me, when you first learned about Ebenezer Howard and The Garden City, you fell in love. England at the turn of the 20th century was living a double life. For centuries it had been defined by the characteristic rolling green hills and the shepherds and farmers who populated it. […]

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Architecture Non-fiction

ProproiSTEPtion follow-up: Barba

I was overcome with the quiet pride of a writer finishing her first novel when I packaged my thoughts on propriosteption. And then, in the kickoff session to our Robotic City seminar at IAAC, the concept reappeared before me, and I felt like the same writer learning that her novel got greenlit for a movie […]

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Architecture

La Sagrada Grúa

Every time we pass Spain’s most famous building, we have something to say. “La Sagrada Familia. More like La Sacada Familia. La Chingada Familia. La Putada Familia.” “It looks like someone bought one of those nozzle attachments for cake icing and decided to just try all the settings.” “There was a time when you had […]

Categories
Architecture

Touching the ground – how?

For the past couple of years I’ve been proudly cultivating a theory of architecture and sustainability which I believed bridged all of the gaps between my various interests in the field and which could usher in a truly new way of seeing things to unite designers, engineers, and the inhabitant. In essence, it espouses physical […]

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Architecture

Placing

In my version of the Hippocratic Oath for architects (which I decided should be called the Vitruvian Oath), I noticed a challenge: if architects and doctors are equals, what is the former’s analog for “healing” and “sick?” What is the core action, the operative verb, without which architecture wouldn’t exist? Not an easy question to answer. […]

Categories
Architecture

The Hippocratic Oath, for Architects

Doctors and architects all too often lumped together as roommates in the penthouse of the apartment building of educated society. One particular quality they share is the obligation to serve the public, to improve the livelihoods of others. Doctors, for various reasons, are more front and center in the eyes of the very society they serve […]

Categories
Architecture

Fixing a hole

A model lives and dies just like the building it poses for. It’s preceded by dreams and drawings and logistics and a budget and a construction schedule…….. and of course a sharp drop in market value shortly after its completion. After that the name of the game is either find a can of spraypaint and a prominent […]