architecture

“Call us dull, call us sellouts, call us gentrifiers – just don’t call us copycats” Our lust for originality is wrecking the city, delivering a rash of formally new but ultimately anti-urban hideous skyline baubles reducing city-making to a spectacle of super-size billboard branding gestures while inhibiting the multiplication of good ideas. Click here

Sydney Urbanity & Architecture

Is architecture is failing contemporary Sydney? Part One     There is no doubt that the City of Sydney and its harbour are magnificent to behold. (click on the photo to enlarge). The mix of built structures really makes for a view that demands you take the time to stare, contemplate and to just enjoy … Continue reading Sydney Urbanity & Architecture

Post-Soviet Architecture

Review: Book The Butt-Ugly Allure of Post-Soviet Architecture The photographs of architecture of the Post-Soviet era. There’s a review in WIRED online of a book. To quote: Frank Herfort moved to Moscow with no intention to make a book. Like all photographers, the German-born artist always keeps one eye open for potential subjects, but making … Continue reading Post-Soviet Architecture

Architecture & Awards

Opinion Piece on the state of Australian Architecture Awards  It was while standing in front of the National Gallery of Australia (NGA), that it occurred to me that the extension, which includes the new entrance, had not figured in awards. I am fully aware of the controversies about how these extensions came about. Should any … Continue reading Architecture & Awards

ACT Government’s inability to listen

Residents speak but the government interprets In August 2019, Ben Ponton, the ACT’s chief planner, said: “Your feedback plays a key role through your unique ability to communicate useful observations into issues that may affect your neighbourhood…” And the reality? 

The ACT Labor/Greens Government fails Canberra

The Singapore government of the ’70s, led by Lee Kuan Yew, was hell-bent on building a modern and prosperous city/state. It took a close relative to point out that if he wanted tourists to visit, then he needed to stop bulldozing the old stuff.

Canberra and trees

Thinking about trees at Christmas time It’s Christmas! A time to be jolly. A Christmas tree is such a positive symbol. No matter how crazy or plain, Christmas trees, like the real ones, bring joy. And we could do with a lot more fun in life.

City Authority pretends to do urban design

Plonk and Run as Urban Design The many books available on good urban design seem not to have been delivered to ACT agencies involved with urban renewal. In the last few years there’s been a consistency in approach to upgrading urban places – and it is not about long-term thinking.

Canberra and the fictional Utopia

ON Wednesday, August 21, ABC TV commenced the fourth series of “Utopia”, starring Rob Sitch as Tony Woodford, the CEO of the fictional National Building Authority.  On the same evening, the North Canberra Community Council (NCCC) hosted a presentation by Malcolm Snow, the real CEO of the City Renewal Authority, on the authority’s program for … Continue reading Canberra and the fictional Utopia