FROM Avishay Artsy
Cities finalize bids for Amazon's HQ2 Thursday is the deadline for cities near and far to submit bids to internet superstore Amazon for its second global headquarters. Amazon says its new HQ2 will be an economic engine for any city, generating around 50,000 jobs. That has cities in Southern California, including Los Angeles, San Diego, Irvine and Santa Ana licking their chops and offering up incentives in an effort to score the headquarters.
Lawrence Halprin, city choreographer At the dedication ceremony for the Bunker Hill Steps in 1990, the designer, landscape architect Lawrence Halprin, said, "Great cities are not made by automobiles, freeways and high-rises. Basically they are made by open spaces and the people who use those open spaces. Photo by Avishay Artsy Look around you today and you will see that landscape design is transforming our infrastructure: the High Line in New York for example, or the remaking of the LA River, or plans to cap our freeways. You can find the roots of these environmental makeovers in the work of the great American landscape architect Lawrence Halprin, whose Modernist parks helped animate downtowns being gutted by urban renewal, in cities including Portland and Seattle. Halprin also designed the Bunker Hill steps and several parks in downtown Los Angeles. Halprin drew inspiration from the great outdoors and his backpacking trips in the High Sierra, as well as the world of dance: his wife Anna Halprin is a renowned choreographer and dancer. Together the pair initiated a process of participatory design that also shaped the profession. Lawrence Halprin died in 2009 but many of his parks are being neglected or altered, and his fans want to draw attention to his work. Right now you will find around Los Angeles gallery shows, performances and talks celebrating Halprin's work. DnA producer Avishay Artsy reports.
How Amazon changed Seattle, Lawrence Halprin The deadline is this week for cities to bid to host Amazon's second headquarters, or HQ2. What can Seattle teach those cities about becoming Amazon's company town? And the late landscape architect Lawrence Halprin saw gardens through the lens of dance. Los Angeles right now is paying tribute to the visionary designer of modernist parks and plazas.
Can a linkage fee solve LA's housing woes? It's now up to the full, LA City Council to decide whether or not to add an additional fee on developers looking to build in the city. It's being called a “linkage fee” and the hope is that it will bring in as much as $90 million a year to help build more affordable housing. A council committee signed off on the idea this week.
Institute of Mentalphysics The Water Terrace dining hall at the Institute of Mentalphysics Photo by Avishay Artsy This weekend, a music and art festival called Desert Daze will take place in Joshua Tree. KCRW is presenting it and the headliners are Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile, Iggy Pop, and Spiritualized. Desert Daze’s trippy title vibes nicely with the festival’s setting, a place that has long attracted spiritual seekers, from yogis to UFO believers -- and architecture fans. It’s called the Institute of Mentalphysics , and was designed by Lloyd Wright with the possible help of his father Frank Lloyd Wright; it was dreamed up by British journalist Edwin J. Dingle, whose travels through China and Tibet led him to change his name to Ding Le Mei and found the Institute of Mentalphysics. Avishay Artsy visits the site for the UFO conference "Contact in the Desert" and reports back on energy vortexes, sacred chakras and Wright, Le Mei and their love of triangles.
Guns and Hollywood, Institute of Mentalphysics You might think Hollywood and the NRA are at opposite ends of the political spectrum. But recent mass shootings have brought renewed focus to the glamorization of guns in the movies. And a music festival in Joshua Tree this weekend takes place in a setting known for its spiritual qualities as well as its architecture. We hear about the Institute of Mentalphysics.
Another step back for road diet plan Traffic in Southern California keeps getting worse. Elected officials have commissioned new light rail lines, additional bike paths, and have even added more freeway lanes. There’s also another concept they’re playing with: road diets. One community is fighting back.
Public safety, YIMBY activist, Academy Museum Can designers of public space and event planners avert mass shootings, like the one that occurred Sunday night in Las Vegas? Pro-housing YIMBY activist Sonja Trauss runs for political office in San Francisco. And the long-planned Academy Museum comes into focus, with a Renzo Piano-designed sphere.
The Academy Museum emerges It's been a long time coming, and riddled with enough drama to fill a Hollywood movie. But today, the still-under construction Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Museum opened its doors for a close-up.
Smart nodes, CAFAM goes to the border, Crenshaw Cowboy DnA goes to check out CAFAM’s timely show of art and architecture, The U.S.-Mexico Border: Place, Imagination, and Possibility -- and on the way encounters the installation of LA’s pilot "smart node." Will the streetlight of the future contain cameras, charging stations, speakers and sensors to detect gunshots? And we meet the homeless artist whose Los Angeles studio was a freeway on-ramp, until he was moved on.
Silicon Valley disrupts cities, Stacy Michelson Apple has rebranded its stores as "town squares;" a vending machine startup called Bodega caused outrage; cities are lining up to woo Amazon's HQ2. DnA looks at tech's impact on cities. Plus, artist Stacy Michelson (creator of KCRW's Good Food tote bag and picnic blanket) tells us how Japanese snack food packaging inspired her goofy illustrations.
Stormy connections, Amazon seeks city, 'Found in Translation' As Apple marks the iPhone's ten year anniversary with the launch of the iPhone X, thousands of people in hurricane-struck areas cannot make a phone call. And Amazon seeks a bride: North American cities are a-courting to house the tech behemoth's HQ2. Plus, LACMA's Found In Translation explores decades of cross-pollination in art and design between California and Mexico.
The crosswalks of Bunker Hill are alive with color Four crosswalks in front of the Broad in downtown Los Angeles got a colorful paint job this weekend. Local high school students helped paint intersecting diagonal stripes in a design created by 94-year-old Venezuelan artist Carlos Cruz-Diez. The Broad invited him to re-imagine the crosswalks as part of the city-wide Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA.
Berggruen Institute, 'Condemned to Be Modern' Nicolas Berggruen, the billionaire investor and philanthropist, has likened his planned research center in the Santa Monica Mountains to a secular monastery. Swiss architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron is designing it. What is the Berggruen Institute, and will the building please the neighbors? And we visit Condemned to Be Modern at LA Municipal Art Gallery, in which Cuban, Brazilian and Mexican artists examine the rhetoric and legacy of modernism.
Angels Flight soars again A downtown Los Angeles landmark returns this week. Starting Thursday, you'll once again be able to ride Angels Flight from Grand Central Market to the top of Bunker Hill and back. The newly-upgraded train has been dark for four years, following a series of derailments and other issues.
Harvey and Houston planning, road diets spark rage The City of Los Angeles is trying to slow drivers down. We get perspectives on a road diet that caused road rage in Playa del Rey. And Tropical Storm Harvey is devastating Southeast Texas. While it is the region's worst storm, it is not the first. Has Houston's approach to design and planning made it susceptible to flooding?
In 'Speechless,' Scott Silveri combines comedy, family & disability Scott Silveri has written and produced sitcoms for more than 20 years. In all that time, he never encountered a TV family that looked anything like the one he grew up in -- with a mom, a dad...and a brother with cerebral palsy. He changed that with his show Speechless on ABC. Silveri tells us about looking to his own past for stories, and why he was determined to make a family comedy and not just a "disability show."
Industry insights and lessons learned from memorable guests We have interesting guests on The Business, and sometimes our conversations are too long to fit into one show. This week we give you stories that were too good to leave on the cutting room floor, including some sharp insights on making it in the industry from David Mandel, David Simon, Shawn Levy and Matt Reeves.
Why did Jared Kushner want a back channel with Russians? News broke Friday that President Trump’s son-in-law and senior advisor, Jared Kushner, tried setting up a back channel between the Trump transition team and the Russian government. What are the consequences for Kushner, President Trump, and the investigation into Russian meddling?