March 25 2013

Bioclimatic Upgrading of Open Public Spaces in Athens, Greece

March 25th, 2013Posted by 

Against all odds, municipalities, all over Greece, are in a race to propose projects for bioclimatic upgrading of public open spaces such as streets, squares, and parks. The “Bioclimatic upgrading for open public spaces” program is funded by the NSRF development program and guided by the Centre for Renewable Energy and Save (CRES). Its main […]

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March 22 2013

Lack of Green Spaces? Pocket Parks are the Solution

March 22nd, 2013Posted by 

When one thinks of a park, one usually imagines a large plot full of trees in the centre of the city with routes for walking or jogging, and shaded sitting areas where people can enjoy the fresh breeze during the hot summer days. But what happens in cities, like Thessaloniki, Greece, in which green spaces […]

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March 22 2013

The Alley Flat Initiative: Affordable and Sustainable Design

March 22nd, 2013Posted by 

The Alley Flat Initiative is a collaborative project between the Gaudalupe Neighborhood Cooperation, the Austin Community Design and Development Center, and the University of Texas Center for Sustainable Development. The initiative’s goal is to demonstrate affordable and adaptable housing types with efficient design and sustainable technologies. The alley flats are “small, detached residential units, accessed […]

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March 15 2013

Cincinnati Bockfest Proudly Heralds German Brewing Heritage

March 15th, 2013Posted by 

During the twilight of the 1880s, Cincinnati, OH, (the Queen City) was internationally celebrated as one of the most prolific centers for beer brewing in the United States. According to Michael D. Morgan, Author of Over the Rhine: When Beer was King, Cincinnati, during this pinnacle era, was chief among the Great American Brewing cities. The city […]

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March 12 2013

In Search of the Urban: Planning for Urbanity in HafenCity, Hamburg

March 12th, 2013Posted by 

The special characteristics of cities and the urban way of life have been of fascination to people for a long time. But what exactly does this idea entail? Urbanity is a concept that is classically associated with modernity, when inner-city industrial spaces became the new centers of living and working, leading to a population boom […]

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March 08 2013

Six “Plus-One” Public Buildings: The Cultural Diversity of Thessaloniki, Greece

March 8th, 2013Posted by 

Thessaloniki, Greece has a rich history. Early Christian and Byzantine monuments, churches, and public buildings, with neoclassical and Baroque architecture, all contribute to the formation of a culturally diverse urban environment. Among them, completely modern edifices (such as the New City Hall) enhance the diversity of the city’s urban structures, while controversy has surrounded them since day one.  The […]

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March 07 2013

Starchitects Can’t Save Miami, Florida

March 7th, 2013Posted by 

A young city, Miami, Florida is still creating itself. Though a late-bloomer and nicknamed the “Magic City” for its rapid population growth, the metropolis followed the familiar route of other American cities: vibrant early 1900s town to economic depression, to post-war suburbs, to single-use zoning, to highway-dissected neighborhoods, to the massive traffic-congested city today. And […]

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February 13 2013

Up and Down in Hong Kong: The Mid-Levels Escalator Systems

February 13th, 2013Posted by 

With increasing urban density, cities are being forced to find sustainable alternative solutions to problems of transportation in urban centers. In cities like Hong Kong, where urban density remains a major issue, creative projects have dramatically changed the urban landscape. The Mid-Levels is a residential area built on the steep slopes of Victoria Peak. It […]

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February 12 2013

The Ups and Downs of Community Venues: The Triple Crown of Downtown Orlando, Florida

February 12th, 2013Posted by 

In 2006, city officials announced plans for a “triple crown” for downtown Orlando. The idea called for the largest public building project the region had ever seen: three new and updated venues that would liven up Central Florida’s culture and sports epicenter.  Almost seven years later, the vision has almost become reality. The Amway Center As home […]

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January 30 2013

Preserving History in Shanghai’s Former French Concession

January 30th, 2013Posted by 

In the middle of one of the busiest and fastest growing cities, lies Shanghai’s former French Concession. With tree-lined avenues, small cafes, boutique shops, parks, and quiet residential streets, the area is markedly different from many of the surrounding areas of immense residential towers and offices. Not only is the FFC (Former French Concession) wildly […]

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January 29 2013

5 Ways to Bring People Back to Downtown: Examples from Orlando, Florida

January 29th, 2013Posted by 

Orlando, Florida’s downtown is undergoing what you might call a “residential renaissance.” As one of the leaders in this national trend, Orlando is seeing faster growth in its downtown than in its suburbs. Economists suspect thousands of apartment units will be added to Orlando’s urban core over the next four years, with a handful of […]

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January 28 2013

Metaxourgio in Athens: A Territory of Rapid Changes

January 28th, 2013Posted by 

Metaxourgio is a residential area of west-central Athens, in close distance to square Omonia. The vicinity’s current urban characteristics stem from its industrial past, which, today, is composed of a big reserve of empty unused buildings, open spaces, small traditional cafés, craftsmen’s workshops on the ground floors of residential buildings, and half-abandoned buildings. Metaxourgio is […]

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January 25 2013

The New “Boardwalk Empire” in Thessaloniki, Greece

January 25th, 2013Posted by 

Taking a stroll by the sea can be a priceless experience. This is why in coastal towns, like Thessaloniki, Greece, the waterfront is one of the busiest parts of the city. And that is the reason why every citizen of Thessaloniki cannot wait for the regeneration of the new waterfront to be completed. Based on […]

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January 25 2013

The Intriguing Case Of Nottingham Tourism and Instagram

January 25th, 2013Posted by 

Cheap labour is good, but free labour is even better. With the emergence of ever evolving social media platforms, many of the world’s industries are formulating creatively inexpensive strategies for optimal gain. However, when it comes to the tourism industry, the utilisation of platforms like Instagram and Pinterest are either non existent or tepidly innovative. […]

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January 14 2013

From a Green Bow for Attica, Towards a Green Belt for Athens

January 14th, 2013Posted by 

The new regulatory master plan for the metropolitan area of Athens/Attica 2021 is a ten-year plan of interventions and urban policies founded on the basis of three major pillars – Economy, Society and Environment, while complying with the European directives for cities with compactness. On the other hand, during the last three years, under the […]

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January 01 2013

Biking and the City: How to Create and Communicate Bike-Friendly Urban Environments

January 1st, 2013Posted by 

Bike paths come in many shapes and sizes. They are made for the urban bicyclist, the long distance bicyclist, or the adventurous bicyclist. Sometimes, they are not made for bicyclists at all, and because it’s too dangerous or unpleasant to use them bicyclists find a way around them. What can a city do to encourage […]

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December 28 2012

Music, Sound, and Noise: BldgBlog’s Fanciful Survey of Acoustically Inspired Designs

December 28th, 2012Posted by 

“In the elevators of the Empire State Building, you’d hear the elevators of the Eiffel Tower. The sounds of the Paris Metró are replaced with the sounds of the Bejing subway…If you don’t like Rome, you can make it sound like Dubai.” –Geoff Manaugh, The BldgBlog Book In this passage, author Geoff Manaugh introduces his […]

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December 03 2012

Review of “Writing About Architecture, Chapter 1: Skyscrapers as Superlatives”

December 3rd, 2012Posted by 

With the recent popularity in critical writing and blogging on various topics of interest, more writers are finding the approach of virtual sharing to be a more effective way to reach a broad spectrum of audiences. More specifically, when writing or critiquing on the topic of architecture and cities – a prevalent topic, it is […]

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November 20 2012

Creative Industries Against the Right to Access Water: Who Can Claim the City?

November 20th, 2012Posted by 

The Mayor, urban planners, and economists agree: creative industries are key to Berlin’s economic development. In a city that doesn’t rely on larger industrial facilities, that holds a special position due to its historical heritage, that was perceived as an island for decades – music, film, and new media industries have started to settle; building […]

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November 16 2012

Three Good Reasons for the Rising Cost of Parking in Austin, Texas

November 16th, 2012Posted by 

“Free parking is at the root of many urban ills: congestion, sprawl, wasteful energy use and air pollution.” – Donald Shoup, Parking may not be an obvious urban design issue, but it affects the traffic patterns, environmental health, and landscapes of our cities. As the population in Austin, Texas continues to skyrocket, the city certainly […]

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