Design

63 year-old Bill Tonnesen standing inside of an art installation located in a two-story commercial building

‘Big Fun Art’ Spreads to Phoenix

A risqué art exhibition housed in a 16,000-square-foot commercial building stands out among the typically more cheery immersive “museums” spreading in 2018.

The dramatic, triangular National Australia Bank building in Melbourne's Docklands.

Is ‘Climate-Positive’ Design Possible?

Advocates say we could design city buildings and neighborhoods that cancel out more carbon than they emit, with the right policies and mindset.

A vegetable farm next to high-rise apartments in Hong Kong.

Just How Much of the World Is Urban?

Experts at the European Commission assess the world as more urban than experts at the United Nations or New York University do. We need to resolve this debate.

The Architectural Glory of Baltimore's Forgotten Movie Theaters

A new exhibit at the National Building Museum traces the architectural and cultural history of these stunning places killed off by technology and urban renewal.

The opulent anteroom to a ladies' restroom at the Ohio Theatre, a 1928 movie palace in Columbus, Ohio.

The Glamorous, Sexist History of the Women’s Restroom Lounge

Separate areas with sofas, vanities, and even writing tables used to put the “rest” in women’s restrooms. Why were these spaces built, and why did they vanish?

A rendering of Quayside, the waterfront development now being planned for Toronto.

Sidewalk Labs’ Neighborhood of the Future in Toronto Is Getting Closer

The new draft plan for the “smart” waterfront development offers broad proposals for housing, transportation, and energy use. But it’s not that radical.

A reflection of an old church spire is seen in the window of a new office building in London.

The Folly of the U.K.’s New Architectural Style Wars

The U.K.’s new housing czar Sir Roger Scruton thinks traditional architecture can foil NIMBYs. But architecture didn’t cause Britain’s housing crisis.  

A photo of an Oakland public housing community.

How to Create Safer Public Housing Projects

Despite their fearsome reputation, a new study finds most low-income housing projects aren't magnets for crime. What makes some more dangerous?

A drawing of humans assembling a modular municipal installation next to a photo of three men assembling one in real life.

When Soviet Industrial Designers Imagined a Better World

Thanks to tireless work by the Moscow Museum of Design, a forgotten institute’s lost work is being introduced to a new generation of designers.

A worker walks through a glass-enclosed hallway facing a courtyard at St. Olav's Hospital in Trondheim, Norway.

With a Deadline In Place, Norway Warms Up to Universal Design

A hospital in Trondheim is a laboratory of sorts for the state’s ambitious plan to embrace a different way of creating buildings, transit, and even websites by 2025.

Kids play soccer in a main square without cars.

What Happens to Kid Culture When You Close the Streets to Cars

In the Spanish city Pontevedra, a family-friendly “pedestrianization” policy has helped increase the population of kids, despite the country’s low birth rates.

A temporary housing prototype

How Temporary Tiny Homes Could Solve Dutch Cities’ Housing Crises

As the Netherlands struggles to keep pace with its need for new homes, many cities like Rotterdam have sprouted temporary micro-neighborhoods.

A row of empty pews in an abandoned church.

America’s Epidemic of Empty Churches

Between 6,000 and 10,000 churches die in the U.S. every year, and many are sitting on prime real estate.

Dar al-Husseini in Ramallah's Old City.

Developers in This Palestine City Are Destroying Historic Homes

A construction boom that begun under Salam Fayyad has claimed much of the historic architecture in Ramallah. Some locals are trying to save what is left.

The Forgotten Remnants of Route 66

Photographer Edward Keating captures the history of Route 66 over the decades as towns along "the mother road" have fallen into disrepair and obscurity.

Rendering of a 65-story glass skyscraper in Quebec City seen at night.

The Skyscraper Dividing Quebec City

Le Phare would stand 65-stories high in Sainte-Foy, an old, low-lying suburb of the historic city.

a photo of a house demolition in Detroit

Appetite for Deconstruction

To battle blight, builders must imagine at the beginning of a structure’s life what will happen at the end of it.

Mary Margaret Pettway with a replica of one of her mother's best-known quilts in Boykin, formerly Gee's Bend, Alabama.

Could Incorporating as a Town Save Gee’s Bend, Alabama?

Despite the global fame of its quilts, the rural hamlet of Gee’s Bend (now Boykin) is deeply impoverished. Boosters say making it an official town could change that.

Graphic designer Burton Kramer thumbs through the pages of the CBC design standards manual he created.

How Canada Discovered Its Visual Identity

A documentary by Vancouver-based graphic designer Greg Durrell explores the surprisingly rich history behind the nation’s postwar design culture.

Columbia University's Low Library

Rediscover the Gilded Age’s Most Famous Architects

McKim, Mead & White, Selected Works 1879-1915 highlights the nation’s defining classical structures from the late 19th century.

A renovated art deco movie theater in Puerto Rico with a new marquee promoting the bakery that moved in last year.

A Neglected Art Deco Gem in Puerto Rico Becomes a Community Staple

Just after Hurricane Maria devastated the island, a historic movie theater in Ponce was restored and reopened as a family-run bakery.