Top 4 Blog Posts for Architecture and Urbanism

HDR on art-filled spaces. P+W discusses disabilities and design. Summer reading with SPUR Rugged history from Preservation. Nature's mutualism.


 Art filled spaces. Michael McManus, communications specialist at HDR Architecture, writes about the new HDR expansion of MultiCare Health System’s Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital and Health Center in Tacoma, WA,

For the art program, designers from HDR and Bainbridge  worked with the client, an art committee, and an art broker to commission works of art by local Tacoma artists. “The artists were tasked with creating pieces that reflect Washington’s Puget Sound. The Puget Sound, which is an inlet of the Pacific Ocean, is home to a wealth of coastal life, from the giant pacific octopus to curious seals and an abundance of Orcas. Each piece that was placed in the hospital captures the innate wonder of marine life.” – Michael McManus

Via Blink Perspective


Disabilities and design. Bill Schmalz and Bruce Toman of Perkins + Will, examine accommodations for those with physical disabilities and how this affects design.

For those who aren’t disabled, the temporarily-able bodied, “we don’t know when accessible design will help us, but at some point in our lives, it probably will.

That’s the attitude we should take when we design. Rather than reluctantly complying with codes and standards, or charitably giving “those disabled people” a break, let’s take the selfish approach: we’re designing accessible spaces for ourselves” – Bill Schmalz and Bruce Toman

Via Ideas  + Perspective


Favorite urbanism reads. SPUR, an organization that’s dedicated to ideas and action for a better city, provides a summer reading list of its favorite books on urban planning and policy.

Jeff Speck’s Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America One Step at a Time, will be discussed during SPUR Reads, a book discussion series launching in San Jose this summer.



Historic with rugged charm. Lauren Walser, field editor at Preservation magazine, discusses a visit to the historic restaurant Saddle Peak Lodge in Calabasas, California.

While the historic building has been a restaurant for many years, current owner Ann Graham Ehringer purchased it in the early 1990s and revived much of the interior. Her approach has been one dedicated to continual maintenance, making repairs to the historic structure, ensuring the space always feels welcoming and has been a preservation steward of the property.

Via Preservation Nation Blog


Biomimicry and urban design. Biomimicry 3.8 hosted the 7th Annual Biomimicry Education Summit and first Global Conference in Boston this past weekend, keynoted by Biomimicry 3.8 cofounder Janine Beynus.

Benyus proposed a shift in thinking about how nature's communities function, arguing that mutualism, not competition, is the driving force in nature. "Together is better," she said, adding that building mutually beneficial relationships will ultimately result in surplus, not scarcity.

Via Treehugger






Top Design and Urbanism Blog Posts for Week of June 3, 2013

An Olin restorative landscape. Array on Tech's influence on healthcare. Perfect shot from Stantec. Treehugger gets inspired by nature. 130610

Restorative landscape for Stamford. OLIN Studio looks at the history and restoration of Mill River Park in Stamford, Connecticut, a 14-acre park and river restoration by Army Corps of Engineers and park design by OLIN that took nearly a decade.

The plan aimed to achieve three primary goals: create a park that meets the recreational and civic needs of a diverse population, provide a natural habitat for native flora and fauna to flourish, and offer a vision that is economically viable, maintainable, and implementable in phases over time.

Via OLIN Studio


Technology’s influence on healthcare. Kristen Lambert, interior designer at Array Architects, recounts a panel discussion on technological innovation in healthcare at the Design Considerations for Technological Innovation in Healthcare Design in New York City.

The future of healthcare will be centered less around a hospital, and will become more integrated into daily life with the delivery of healthcare services reflecting the mobility that technology now offers us. “Our role as healthcare architects and designers now is to design clinical environments which support the new ways that people will give and receive care.” –Kristen Lambert

Via Array Architects Blog


Getting the perfect shot. Joe DiGiorgio, senior engineer at Stantec who has been taking photographs for 45 years, chronicles his day of taking the perfect photo at the grand opening of a wastewater treatment plant solids handling facility in Merced, California.

 “Photographers work to get the perfect picture… being there, scouting the right vantage point, and then watching and learning and seeing what matters and what works (and what doesn’t). The same approach serves me well as an engineer and I enjoy the times I can step back from the pure engineering calculations and appreciate the beauty of the bigger picture through these photo assignments.” – Joe DiGiorgio

Via Stantec Blog


Inspired by nature. Lloyd Alter, managing editor of Treehugger, tells you why you don’t want miss out on Biomimicry’s Education Summit and first Global Conference in Boston from June 21-23, 2013.

“We're seeing more examples of biomimicry every day. Over the years, we at TreeHugger have been watching the merging of those two ideas in our culture, as we learn from nature.

Day 1 is about Resilient Cities.

Day 2 is about the future of 3D Printing.

Day 3 will cover Biomimicry as an Emerging Discipline and Economic Development Framework.

Via Treehugger

Social Media

Grappling with viral photo. A picture recently surfaced on Facebook of a Taco Bell employee licking a bunch of tacos. While the circumstances surrounding the public display of taco shell affection are unclear, the photo went viral.  The company responded by saying the tacos were for training purposes and not intended to be served to customers. The employee and the photographer were both fired.

Via Huffington Post