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Zach Mortice

Chicago Exhibit Spotlights Charlotte Perriand’s Alpine Ski Resort

Metropolis Magazine Ι May 23, 2018  The most impressive item depicted at Matthew Rachman’s exhibit of Charlotte Perriand–designed furniture is conspicuously absent from his Chicago gallery—it was too big to fit. The object in question, a gleaming red and white prefab bathroom produced for the designer’s Les Arcs ski resort in the French Alps, was an inch too big to slide inside the Ukrainian Village space, even with
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Blue Light Special: The Chicago-Area High School in an Old Kmart

CityLab Ι May 8, 2017 Belvidere Road is an unremarkable stretch of suburbia in Waukegan, Ill., north of Chicago, lined with highway-sign staples: gas stations, car washes, fast-food joints, and a low-rent motel. It was only after a previous deal to move his private high school into a converted office building fell through that Preston Kendall came up with the idea to slide into the abandoned Kmart here. Kendall saw t
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The Invasive Species Exhibit Wriggles Into the Art World Using Augmented Reality

Redshift Ι April 12, 2018 Site-specific and speculating on a possible future, surreally biomorphic and also digital, artist Felice Grodin’s Terrafish installation is proudly in-betwixt and in-between. This digital model, part of the Invasive Species exhibit at the Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM), doesn’t exist in real space: It uses augmented reality (AR) as a new medium at the fore of art and architecture. The show of
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Meet the 61,000 Transit Nerds of Facebook’s ‘New Urbanist Memes for Transit-Oriented Teens’

Chicago Magazine Ι March 29, 2018  When a member of the Facebook group “New Urbanist Memes for Transit-Oriented Teens” (NUMTOT), posted an article about Paris officials considering making the city’s buses and trains free, people were excited. One commenter:  “Yo, I deadass just got a little horny.”  But what followed further down the comment thread was a grad-school level discussion of induced demand, behavioral econ
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San Francisco’s Ambitious India Basin Development Project Is Wild at the Edges

Redshift Ι March 20, 2018 India Basin, on the southeast edge of San Francisco, was historically a neighborhood tied to the shipbuilding industry. An unassuming nub poking out into the San Francisco Bay, the 17-acre parcel at 700 Innes Avenue is something of a unicorn: It’s a rare example of undeveloped land (along the waterfront, no less) tucked into one of one of America’s most vibrant and densely populated cities.
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Interview with Yesomi Umolu

Architectural Record Ι March 19, 2018 Yesomi Umolu is interested in applying her multi-disciplinary expertise (with stops in architecture school, practice, and the elite contemporary art curatorial class) and globe-trotting personal and professional background to a biennial that speaks to an equally wide range of public audiences. “The biennial is for and of the city of Chicago, as well as being a big international p
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The Gateway Arch, a Global Icon, Reconnects to St. Louis

CityLab Ι March 12, 2018 Until recently, the grounds of St. Louis’ Gateway Arch were as hemmed in and isolated as the shimmering catenary curve that defines the city is grand and imperious. Walled off by a 1,200-car parking garage on one side and a freeway gulch on the other, the arch was a car-choked hub of tourist activity: good for driving to, parking, snapping a few photos, and driving out again. The city-scaled
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Carol Ross Barney is Chicago’s New Daniel Burnham

Metropolis Magazine Ι January 2018 As a lifelong Chicagoan, Carol Ross Barney has seen the Chicago River transition from an effluent-filled cargo highway to a vibrant recreational spot, one where her grandsons go fishing. “They can throw their line in and pull out two- to three-inch fish immediately,” she says. It has even become a habitat for otters. As for people, the river has become an alternative commuting path:
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Mott MacDonald Has Tunnel Vision for the Chesapeake Bay Thimble Shoal Project

Redshift Ι Jan. 4, 2018 In early 2019, a tunnel-boring machine the length of a football field will begin chewing through the earth below the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia. At a rate of 60 feet per day, according to the Virginian-Pilot, it will carve a 42-foot-wide, mile-long path 105 feet below sea level at its deepest. Once this behemoth machine moves 500,000 cubic yards of soil, the resulting tunnel will house two tra
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The Story of the Great Lakes in 8 Maps

December 11, 2017 Ι CityLab  Stretching across eight states and two Canadian provinces, the Great Lakes region contains the world’s largest freshwater system and is likely the greatest single surface aggregation of rare resources on the planet. If it was a standalone country, its economy would be the fourth largest in the world. Yet its natural resources and vibrant urbanity are seldom studied as a unified zone, and
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