Mark Byrnes

Mark Byrnes is a senior associate editor at CityLab who writes about design and architecture.

A 1990s Preview of a ‘Gateway’ for Cleveland

A local celebrity, dark backgrounds, smooth jazz, and a mysterious set of eyes surely sold the region’s corporate class on what’s now known as “The Q.”

A Musical Escape From Late-Apartheid Johannesburg

In the 1980s, the South African band Umoja made upbeat pop hits under the watchful eye of the South Africa Broadcast Corporation. It’s impossible not to love “Money, Money.”

‘This Tube Was Made for You and Me’

In 1966, the opening of Montreal’s rapid transit service was welcomed with a TV show and a song that praised the mayor who helped bring it to life.

A 1970s abstract transit map made entirely of dots in four different colors

The D.C. Metro Almost Had a Very Cool Abstract Map

A series of modernist transit design gems were discovered last week inside Massimo and Lella Vignelli’s archives.

Out of a National Tragedy, a Housing Solution

New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller used the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. to help create a superagency that would transform the state’s cities and suburbs. It didn’t last long.

John Portman posing in front of architectural models inside his office.

Making Sense of John Portman

Harvard’s Mohsen Mostafavi talks about Portman’s America and Other Speculations.

How to Care for Your Portman Hotel

Architects chime in on how to make the right interventions inside and out of the late developer-architect’s distinct buildings.

1970s apartment complex in downtown Buffalo

The Last Man Standing in a Doomed Buffalo Housing Complex

After a long fight between tenants and management, John Schmidt is waiting for U.S. Marshals to drag him out of Shoreline apartments, a Brutalist project designed by Paul Rudolph.

'Happy Holidays!' From New York's Parking Garages

For tourists in Midtown looking for the True Spirit of Christmas, photographer Chris Maggio knows just where to go.

Broadacre City model

When Frank Lloyd Wright Comes to Harlem

A show at Columbia University illuminates the celebrated architect’s vision for housing in America by placing it alongside the urban brick apartment towers he loathed.

Buckminster Fuller's Biosphere as it appeared during Montreal's Expo 67.

In Quebec, Buckminster Fuller's Domed Dreams Live On

A show in Montreal focuses on the province’s forgotten history with the geodesic dome leading up to Expo 67.

Montreal's Retired Metro Cars Are Staying Busy

Thresholds, an art installation made of old MR-63 doors, is the first of seven winning reuse proposals to be realized.

Super Kind, Metro Los Angeles' new etiqutte superhero.

Los Angeles Gets the Transit Etiquette Superhero It Needs

Metro’s manners campaign features a monster-battling Japanese pop star.

Marcel Breuer's Armstrong Rubber Company office building in New Haven.

A Complicated Second Life for a Brutalist Icon

Fifteen years after IKEA demolished part of it for a parking lot, a Marcel Breuer-designed office building in New Haven has become a stage for art.

A view of the New York City panorama at Queens Museum

Building 'Never Built New York'

How Sam Lubell and Greg Goldin turned a book with 200 years of unrealized architectural dreams for five boroughs into a museum show.

A view an academic building at Cornell Tech on Roosevelt Island and the Manhattan skyline.

How To Plan a Campus For an Island

A discussion with SOM design partner Roger Duffy on the master plan he helped put together for Cornell Tech.

Jessy Lanza singing in front of the George Robinson Bandshell in Hamilton, Ontario.

Groove Out to the Modest Charms of Hamilton, Ontario

Jessy Lanza’s music videos embrace the genericness of her Rust Belt hometown.

A Juggalo standing in front of Buffalo City Hall.

The Juggalo March Is Not a Joke

Facepainted fans of the Insane Clown Posse are gathering on the National Mall this weekend. And they have something important to say.

Montreal's Expo 67 Lives On (In Music Video Form)

Thanks to some tricky editing, the Canadian dream pop band Alvvays gets a gig at the legendary World’s Fair

An Architecture Firm for Everyone

Eric Bunge of nARCHITECTS on how to make modular homes, waterfronts, and medical campuses work for today’s cities.

Moshe Safdie speaking outside in Jerusalem.

When a Young Moshe Safdie Took On the Old City

In a 1973 documentary, the then-35-year-old architect muses over how to build in Jerusalem without sacrificing its heritage.