Categories
Architecture

105 Montague Street Local Law 97 Report

I live in a 120-year-old, 8-floor, 25-unit, brick-and-wood-framed apartment building in Brooklyn Heights. The first thing that crossed my mind circa 2018 was that the building will be hit by the new Local Law 97 passed in by City Council in 2015 as part of the ambitious Climate Mobilization Act. Beyond the intent of the […]

Categories
Fiction

A Morning with Galen

This is a work of fiction. We sit across from each other. It’s an obtuse but intimate angle, bisecting the corner of the table so that my knees touch her dangling toes, and our faces are both within grabbing radius of the other’s arms. I realize the position is reserved only for these situations, third […]

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Architecture Books

101 Things I Didn’t Learn In Architecture School

The longer I practice architecture, the more I learn about what I do not know. Particularly stinging are the “unknown unknowns” as a U.S. Secretary of Defense might call them. For architects, “known unknowns” might include specialized knowledge within categories that we were introduced to in school but never had time to dig into. For […]

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Architecture Data Analysis Urbanism

Disaster Preparedness (excerpt)

Below is an excerpt from the introductory section of a white paper I am developing. Human society in the 21st century will be impacted by global forces such as pandemics, climate change-driven weather events, and geopolitical conflict. As witnessed during the COVID-19 pandemic, governments could improve their “disaster preparedness” particularly by assessing and utilizing existing […]

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Uncategorized

Are Movies Getting Longer?

Do you ever find yourself sitting through yet another big-studio blockbuster, wondering when it’s going to end? I have been feeling this feeling a lot lately. Is the 2+ hour running time a standard since movies immemorial, or have they been slowly getting longer? Naturally, I had to do some data analysis to find out. […]

Categories
Urbanism

Urban-Rural Legends

I. The Myth It goes back before COVID forced city dwellers to seek greener pastures. It goes back before white flight. It goes back to the founding of the United States, and the ideological struggle at its heart. It even goes as far back as the evolution of man, from hunter to farmer. It’s a […]

Categories
Architecture Urbanism

Pieces of Lexington

Architecture is a slow profession. Fundamentally, since shelter for human life is best built to last, even the simplest single-family dwelling is complex enough to require the coordinated effort of multiple people, resources from far and wide, and months of planning and building. Any attempt to hasten this inevitably compromises some step in the process: […]

Categories
Non-fiction

Aspiration Man X

If you haven’t ever had a video game phase, you may find the first half of this essay weedy. If you have had a video game phase but did not come of age in the 1990s, you may find the second half of this essay obvious. If you had a video game phase when you […]

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 […]

Categories
Fiction

Nuclear Lake

It’s a miracle of psycho-evolution and a sobering truth of human squeamishness that everyone– from hobos to kings, from soldiers to bakers– has their safe mental crevice to crawl into when they defecate. Some remember their parents’ kitchen, some summon the the picture of a deer drinking from a brook, others hum the Bottleneck Blues… Me, […]