The Architect Newswire is an aggregation of news from media outlets around the world, intended to keep you abreast of all of the industry’s important developments. The stories we feature are not reported, edited, or fact-checked by Architect’s staff.

 

THE RIVER OAKS EXAMINER (TEXAS)
Dallas firm sues over copyright

Dallas-based Humphreys & Partners Architects are suing developer Buckhead and architects EDI International for copyright infringement. Charlotte Aguilar reports that the proposed 23-story Ashby high-rise attributed to EDI is “extremely close, if not identical to” a 2006 site plan designed by Humphreys for Buckhead and a 27-story high-rise designed by the firm in Minneapolis. Buckhead CEO Kevin Kirton acknowledges that Humphreys previously worked on the Ashby project in Houston, but claims the case has no merit. “We compensated them for that work, and we believe that this is our own work product,” Kirton says.

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MINNESOTA PUBLIC RADIO
Historic tax credits create jobs in MN

Minnesota’s 2010 historic preservation tax credit should create 1,800 construction jobs, according to a University of Minnesota study. Curtis Gilbert reports that the program will cost the state between $10 million and $12 million per year until it expires in 2015. “While there are no silver bullets that will solve our economic challenges, there are a number of solutions that will help make things better,” says Minnesota Historical Society director Steve Elliott. “The historic tax credit is one of those things.”

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THE KANSAS CITY STAR (MO)
Architects help Habitat go green

Kansas City–based architectural firm El Dorado is working with Heartland Habitat for Humanity to develop new energy-efficient models for the non-profit. Steve Paul reports that it’s one of five pilot programs sponsored by Habitat for Humanity International and San Francisco–based Public Architecture. “It’s a great idea to challenge Habitat for Humanity and the architects to rethink the Habitat home in the context of today’s issues,” says El Dorado principal Josh Shelton. “The whole conversation on the national level is extremely important.” The preliminary design focuses on a “common sense approach to sustainability,” according to Shelton, and incorporates natural ventilation and super-insulation techniques. Plans call for the first house to be started in the spring.

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BEAVERTON VALLEY TIMES (OR)
Sustainable grant for Beaverton

The city of Beaverton, Ore., will receive a $1 million Sustainable Communities Challenge Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The Beaverton Valley Times reports that the funding will “accelerate the development and implementation of its Beaverton Creekside District Master Plan to integrate affordable housing with efficient transportation, green infrastructure and public amenities.” HUD Northwest Regional Administrator Mary McBride says, “Top-down, cookie-cutter grants are ill-suited to helping communities define and achieve what they want their future to look like. That can only happen from the ground up, through a collaboration that has the resources to map a route and the job, housing and transportation development strategies that will get them where they want to be.”

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THE STAR-LEDGER (NJ)
HUD grant for NJ

The Rutgers University Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy will receive a $5 million Sustainable Communities Challenge Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to help develop regional economic plans for 13 counties in northern New Jersey. Tom Hayden reports that Rutgers has been working with NJ Transit and the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority for two years. “Our days of building mindless sprawl are over,” Sen. Bob Menendez, D-NJ, says. “This good planning will provide jobs and ensure people have a place to call home, to bring their families to.”

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ORLANDO SENTINEL (FL)
Federal dollars for Orlando transit developments

The East Central Florida Planning Council will receive a $2.4 million Sustainable Communities Challenge Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to plan development around a dozen SunRail commuter stops in the Orlando area. Dan Tracy reports that developments near the stations are expected to produce as many as 245,000 jobs over 30 years. “Never have to put your key in your car,” says Ed Jennings, HUD regional director for the Southeast. “That's where we want to go.”

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THE WASHINGTON POST
GSA and Metro may determine FBI building’s fate

There’s a growing movement to get the Federal Bureau of Investigation to vacate its deteriorating J. Edgar Hoover Building in Washington, D.C. Jonathan O’Connell reports that the GSA’s Public Buildings Service head Bob Peck is discussing a public/private partnership to redevelop the lucrative downtown site, but that the potential move of the agency could help spur a partnership between the GSA and Metro, D.C.’s subway service. Metro owns sites near its stations and the GSA will acquire them as needed and develop them for their tenants. “For us, it’s the opportunity to find transit-oriented sites for our agencies,” Peck says. “For them, it’s a lot of prime properties that they’ve been sitting on for way too long.”

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GIZMAG
New LED bulb form factors

Ben Coxworth reports that German manufacturer LEDO is introducing a new line of LED bulbs, called Bulled. Each one uses 11 watts of electricity to match the light output of a conventional 60-watt bulb. Three different designs offer varying takes on the traditional Edison style. The Classic, the Modulor, and the Star arrange 11 CREE LEDs around different heat sink designs. The bulbs are initially available in Europe, priced at $134.

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