1. Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health
Frank Gehry, FAIA, had always turned down commissions in Las Vegas, knowing that the city would inevitably turn his architecture into yet another theme. So when Larry Ruvo, a beverage entrepreneur, came calling, Gehry nearly turned him out. But Ruvo, a salesman on a crusade, won the architect over with the prospect of designing an Alzheimer’s research center in the emerging 61-acre Symphony Park, a development that aims to revitalize downtown Las Vegas, away from the lights of the Strip.
2. Guangzhou Opera House
Zaha Hadid, Hon. FAIA, follows up 2009’s National Museum of the XXIst Century Arts in Rome (aka the MAXXI) with the largest and most complex example of her new generation of primarily computer-generated designs: China's Guangzhou Opera House.
In March, in every supermarket in Mexico City, architect Fernando Romero stared back at queuing shoppers from the cover of Quién magazine. To his right stood the gleaming paraboloid of his latest project, the Museo Soumaya in Mexico City, and over it a headline that read, “Slim’s Soumaya: How Fernando Romero Realized His Father-in-Law’s Dream.”
4. Marina Bay Sands
Moshe Safdie, FAIA, is enjoying an embarrassment of riches. The architect’s Boston-area firm has five large-scale projects scheduled for completion this year—three in the U.S. and one each in Singapore and India. The Marina Bay Sands resort in Singapore, designed for the Las Vegas Sands Corp., is one of the most ambitious: The $5.7 billion, 9-million-square-foot program includes a 2,500-room hotel, convention center, casino, retail, dining, nightclubs, event plaza, and museum, all topped by the Sands SkyPark.
5. The Top U.S. Architecture Schools
Every year for the last nine years, the Design Futures Council and the journal DesignIntelligence have produced a ranking of the architecture schools that best prepare students for professional practice. The results are determined through a poll of firms and organizations that hire graduates.
Gordon Bunshaft’s brooding concrete-and-granite donut at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C., is a perfect foil for an inflatable structure whose playful form will take over the museum’s central courtyard and surrounding plaza in warm weather. The proposal by New York’s Diller Scofidio + Renfro for a seasonal expansion will create a vibrant public space to house art and education events.
7. Carnegie Mellon Universtiy Gates and Hillman Centers
Early 20th-century Pittsburgh architect Henry Hornbostel has found kindred spirits in Atlanta-based Mack Scogin and Merrill Elam. Their design for Washington, D.C.'s new Gates Center for Computer Science and Hillman Center for Future-Generation Technologies, on the campus of Carnegie Mellon University, is a 21st-century reinterpretation of the architectural principles that Hornbostel relied on when he drafted the campus master plan and designed its earliest structures starting in 1904.
8. Orange Cube
It’s safe to say: No one is going to have trouble finding the Orange Cube. Then again, it’s hard to miss a seven-story, Day-Glo block of architectural Swiss cheese that looks as if it’s been slammed by the Lord’s own shuttlecock. Designed by the Paris-based firm of Dominique Jakob and Brendan MacFarlane, the duo best known for the Centre Pompidou’s blobby rooftop restaurant, this most unconventional building sits boldly along the Quai Rambaud in the Confluence, a formerly derelict industrial zone of Lyon where the rivers Soane and Rhone meet.
9. Architect's 2009 Salary Survey Asks: How Much Do You Make?
If you’ve still got a job, and we hope you do, 2009 may well be the year to count your blessings: a regular paycheck, health insurance (perhaps), and someplace besides your couch to go in the morning. Even so, work anxieties and office politics haven’t gone away. They’re still there, just bubbling a little deeper below the surface. The guy down the hall feels unappreciated; your cubicle mate knows she’s underpaid. And how did that dolt from the branch office get a promotion?
10. House of Air
The owners of San Francisco's House of Air, two 30-something snowboarding entrepreneurs, happily build upon the flight connotations of their new home: a 1921 biplane hangar converted into what they call an indoor trampoline park. The staff wear reflector-embellished fluorescent nylon vests with “FLIGHT CREW” stenciled on the back. When asked the meaning of their logo—a penguin sporting a jetpack—employees recite their tagline with a grin: “We give flight to the flightless.”