The Barclays Center in gingerbread, by Joyce Bakeshop in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Credit: Cate Corcoran/Brownstoner
Good morning, architects, and happy new year. For The New York Times, Charles V. Bagli reports that the Barclays Center has run into trouble beyond NIMBYs and architecture critics. The building's bolts aren't working. Hundreds of bolts have been replaced, and all of them required a closer look, Bagli writes. Project developer Forest City Ratner says that it hardly matters that some bolts had to be swapped out in the design by SHoP Architects. But it sounds as though the New York City Buildings Department disagrees. The bigger Barclays story may be that a cakeshop in Prospect Heights has made a gingerbread replica of the building.
PRO BONO 101. Ann Clark, AIA, is teaching a course at the Illinois Institute of Technology on working as an architect in developing countries. The Chicago Tribune is more than happy to tell you this story, since the Tribune apparently played a part in getting Clark the gig at IIT. For those of you dreading the return to the office today, read about Clark's challenges working in Haiti near the border with Dominican Republic. Or maybe don't? Depends on whether you think transporting a 35-foot-long steel truss across impossible terrain sounds like an adventure or nightmare. (To find out how, you'll have to register for her class.)
BRIDGE TO NOWHERE. "There is no danger that the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge will collapse into the Anacostia River, District engineers say, but it is falling apart faster than repairs can be made," Ashley Halsey III reports in The Washington Post. It is a small comfort to read that officials say that they will close down the bridge before anyone can be hurt on it, but that makes it sound as though officials are explicitly planning to edge up to what The Atlantic is calling the infrastructure cliff—the $2.5 trillion in upgrade that U.S. highways and bridges require to survive for another 50 years.
ZIP. Steven Pearlstein makes the case in The Washington Post that the $491 million acquisition of Zipcar by Avis means that this particular car-sharing service is doomed. He is convincing. Bad news for urbanists and transit enthusiasts.
...AND REMAINDERS. Architecture for Humanity's year-end review... ARCHITECT contributor Amanda Kolson Hurley on the D.C. Height Limit... Smithsonian IDs four buildings to watch in 2013... Maurizio Sabini on leading the Drury University Hammons School of Architecture... Memorializing the designer of the Lincoln Memorial... Bizarre story about an architect seeing a play... Richmond magazine Q&A with Michael Graves, FAIA.