The field of architecture started with a very simple idea; let's put a roof over our head. It was the idea of shelter. Controlling our environment. Putting something between us and the elements. Quite simply, to keep the rain out.Read More
The role of the architect in modern culture is murky, at best. The profession is often misunderstood, undervalued, or deemed a luxury for the wealthy. Why is this? Where did the profession go wrong? Can it be redeemed?Read More
The New York Times has a new article titled California Drought Tests History of Growth. It includes several striking photos of the built environment in the very unbuildable environment of the California desert. As I looked at these photos, all I could think was, "How does this make any sense!? How are educated, adult human beings making the decisions to build like this!?"Read More
Apple is known for putting the importance they place on design. They are typically at the forefront of design; marrying minimalist aesthetics with simple function. But, what of the magic mouse? It is certainly minimalist...but is it functional?Read More
ARE BIKE LANES REALLY MAKING OUR STREETS BETTER?
Not all streets are created equal. Streets serve various purposes. They come in various shapes and sizes. Some are loved. Some are hated.
The Via dei Calzaiuoli is a street in Florence that connects the Piazza del Duomo to the Piazza della Signoria. It is one of the nicest, calmest, most enjoyable streets you could ever hope to walk along. Its simple brilliance is often overlooked, as eyes are drawn to Brunelleschi’s great dome at one end or the Uffizi Gallery at the other. The street’s role as a supporting cast member was set early on, when in the 1300’s the grade was lowered to make the height of the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral seem even more otherworldly. But the Via has played a vital role in Florentine life for centuries. The sculptor Donatello had a workshop on the Calzaiuoli. Da Vinci, Galileo, and Machiavelli spent afternoons striding along this treasured corridor of art, history, and architecture. The Calzaiuoli is more than just a nice street that connects monuments; it is, in fact, a model for modern architects and planners.Read More