Motor City Breakdown
On Places, Jerry Herron looks at the troubled portrait of Detroit — and its spectacular decline — in recent books and films.
What Falls to Hand
On Places, Adelheid Fischer examines the potential of jugaad
— the Indian practice of doing more with less — to "frame a global philosophy of sustainable innovation,"
12.06.12: Michael Light & Aaron Rothman
Above Lake Las Vegas
On Places, aerial photographs of the bankrupt luxury communities of Lake Las Vegas, by Michael Light.
12.03.12: Dave Jordano & Aaron Rothman
Detroit, As Is
On Places, a portfolio by the Detroit-born photographer Dave Jordano, drawn from his latest series, Detroit Unbroken Do
wn; with an introduction by Aaron Rothman.
The Unreal Estate Guide to Detroit
On Places, Andrew Herscher challenges the usual view of Detroit's decline: "What if Detroit has not only fallen apart and emptied out but also become a new sort of urban formation that only appears depleted through the lens of conventional urbanism?"
Scarcity contra Austerity
On Places, Jeremy Till explores the distinction between the political ideology of austerity and the physical condition of scarcity — and argues that a sharper understanding of scarcity will enable designers to operate more creatively.
Factory of the World: Scenes from Guangdong
On Places, journalist Hsiao-Hung Pai investigates the living and working conditions of migrant laborers in Guandgong, and what she sees as the increasing ruthlessness of Chinese urbanism.
Beyond Zuccotti Park: Making the Public
On Places, in the wake of Occupy Wall Street, Jeffrey Hou argues that we need to focus not only on ensuring the right to public space but also on the "making of the public
as an engaged citizenry."
09.17.12: Jonathan Massey & Brett Snyder
Occupying Wall Street: Places and Spaces of Political Action
On Places, Jonathan Massey and Brett Snyder explore the physical places and virtual spaces of Occupy Wall Street — the "hypercity built of granite and asphalt, algorithms and information."
09.17.12: Jonathan Massey & Brett Snyder
Mapping Liberty Plaza
On Places, Jonathan Massey and Brett Synder present their maps of Zuccotti Park, tracking "the transformation of a corporate plaza into a testing ground for radical idea about the reorganization of society."
Revolution of the Thirsty
On Places, Karen Piper argues that the ongoing Egyptian Revolution is about not only political freedom but also the right to water: it is a "revolution of the thirsty."
06.25.12: Reinhold Martin, Raphael Sperry, Amit C. Price Patel, Liz Ogbu & Tom Angotti
The Housing Question
On Places, a debate inspired by the MoMA exhibition Foreclosed: Rehousing the American Dream
, organized by the Buell Center and Architects/Designers/Planners for Social Responsibility.
06.14.12: Henk Wildschut & Aaron Rothman
On Places, a portfolio by photographer Henk Wildschut documents a crisis hidden in plain sight — the network of transient camps set up all across Europe by undocumented workers from Africa and Asia.
Zone: The Spatial Softwares of Extrastatecraft
On Places, Keller Easterling explores the phenomenal rise of the free zone — an opportunistic urban hybrid that's powered the rise of glittering world cities like Singapore and Dubai.
Housing and the 99 Percent
On Places, Jonathan Massey traces a history of American home ownership, from the boosterism of the 1920s to postwar suburbia to the housing bubble to current foreclosure crisis.
Lessons from the Front Lines of Social Design
On Places, Will Holman recounts his experience at Arcosanti, Rural Studio and YouthBuild — and describes the challenge of making a career in public-interest architecture.
The Forgetting Machine: Notes Toward a History of Detroit
On Places, Jerry Herron tracks the decline and fall of his home city of Detroit, from ruin porn to the demolition of Hudson's to Henry Ford's first horseless carriage.
Occupy: The Day After
On Places, Reinhold Martin explores how Occupy Wall Street might challenge the structural inequities of finance capitalism, and how architects and urbanists can contribute to the next phase of the movement
Digital Farm Collective
On Places, and in time for Thanksgiving, artist and farmer Matthew Moore describes his Digital Farm Collective, a multimedia project created to spur dialogue about the future of the family farm.
Bird on Fire: Lessons from the World's Least Sustainable City
On Places, Andrew Ross analyzes the contradictory political and economic forces that once made Phoenix the fastest-growing city in the U.S. — and today a prime casualty of the crash.
Occupy: What Architecture Can Do
On Places, Reinhold Martin explores the role of architecture in the Occupy Wall Street movement — and in the larger challenges of constructing a better and more equitable society.
Is This Place Great or What
On Places, a slideshow by photographer Brian Ulrich explores "dark stores" — empty big boxes and ghost malls, collateral consumer damage of the economic crash.
Scenes from Surrendered Homes
On Places, urban historian Alex Schafran looks closely at Douglas Smith's photographs of foreclosed homes in California, and sees poignant documentation of the personal toll of the great recession.
"We Just Want To Be Tourists"
On Places, Karen Piper describes a recent trip to Torres del Paine National Park in Chile, where upscale adventure tourism confronted local political protest.
The Dying Sea
On Places, a portfolio of photographs by Radek Skrivanek, documenting the death of the Aral Sea.
This Is Flint, Michigan
On Places, Wes Janz probes the ongoing decline of Flint, Michigan, and wonders about the role of the architect in a city where there's more demolition than design.
The Interventionist's Toolkit
On Places, Mimi Zeiger reports on what she calls "the interventionist's toolkit" — architects' and urbanists' creative responses to the economic slump.
Relearning the Social: Architecture and Change
On Places, architect Quilian Riano reviews the Museum of Modern Art's new exhibition Small Scale, Big Change: New Architectures of Social Engagement.
William W. Braham
The Temptations of Survivalism, or, What do you do with your waste?
On Places, architect William Braham explores the promise — and the illusions — of sustainable self-sufficiency in environmental design.
09.27.10: Interboro Partners
What's Going On in the Garment District?
On Places, an interactive section created by the Brooklyn-based Interboro Partners offers a detailed look at "what's going on in the garment district" of Manhattan.
08.04.10: Luther Thie & Kathrine Worel
Frontiers: On the Edge in Merced and Malibu
On Places, a portfolio of photographs by Luther Thie and Kathrine Worel, documenting houses and homes on the frontiers of the contemporary economic and environmental crises.
Borderland/Borderama/Detroit: Part 3
On Places, the third and final installment of "Borderland/Borderama/Detroit," an exploration of the rise and fall — and persistence — of Detroit, and what it means in American culture, by writer and historian Jerry Herron.
Borderland/Borderama/Detroit: Part 2
On Places, part 2 of "Borderland/Borderama/Detroit," an exploration of the rise and fall — and persistence — of Detroit, and what it means in American culture, by writer and historian Jerry Herron.
Borderland/Borderama/Detroit: Part 1
On Places, the first installment of "Borderland/Borderama/Detroit," an exploration of the rise and fall — and persistence — of Detroit, and what it means in American culture, by writer and historian Jerry Herron.
06.02.10: Alejandro Bahamón & Maria Camila Sanjinés
Rematerial: From Waste to Architecture
On Places, Rematerial: From Waste to Architecture
: a gallery of architecture projects constructed from discarded materials, ranging from recycled tires to repurposed refrigerators to the steel supports of a dismantled expressway.
All Those Numbers: Logistics, Territory and Walmart
On Places, architect Jesse LeCavalier dissects the ever-expanding ambitions of Walmart, which is now targeting major cities as its next big(box) market.
The Public Works
Why isn't the Great Recession inspiring a new New Deal? The essential dilemma, argues Places editor Nancy Levinson, is that we no longer believe in public sector solutions — or even in the public itself.
Much U.S. infrastructure is "fracture critical" — vulnerable to catastrophic and systemic failure; Thomas Fisher argues that our finance, housing and energy systems are fracture-critical as well.
09.27.09: Paho Mann & Nancy Levinson
Re-Inhabited Circle Ks
Photographer Paho Mann focuses his camera on the "reinhabited" Circle Ks of Phoenix and Albuquerque — and finds a welcome dose of local commitment on the commercial strip.