An opinion-piece by ArchDaily’s Jesse Connuck in response to Nick Axel’s essay ‘Cloud Urbanism: Towards a Redistribution of Spatial Value’ as featured in Volume #47: The System*.
Dredging is the mechanical process that keeps water, water. Yet due to natural fluid dynamics, silting is an ongoing process. So we have to continuously take subaquedous sediment from one place and move it to another, releasing a host of disruptive ecological processes along the way. The Open Workshop has developed a strategy for Toledo, Ohio to use dredged material for both extending the city’s civic space and cleaning up Lake Eerie.
The welfare state was pretty great while it lasted, wasn’t it? Yeah, those were the days, golden, even. But now, sad to say yet no point to lament times have changed; things are different. Planning used to be the way society would stay on track and moving forward. Today, for better or worse, we have the market. There are reasons why the market came to take the place of the state, but the real question is, now that we have it, how can we make the market work for us?
The central hub of the United Parcel Service (UPS) processes, on average, 1.6 million packages per day. That’s almost twenty per second. Such an intense flow forces operations to be internally consistent, but also demands an enormous amount of flexibility due to unpredictable externalities. What if a road is closed, or a machine breaks? Ghazal Jafari investigates the UPS’s contingency management system and looks at this logistical behemoth venturing into new territories.
Latin America is a place, but it’s also a project. Its history as a colonial project gave birth to a radical one of decolonization. With revoutionaries like Simón Bolívar and José de San Martin, the idea of Latin America as a collective whole emerged and has persisted up to this day. Godofredo Pereira looks at the failed proposal of a pipeline running between three countries to question whether such a mechanism can’t be used to realize such a project, that of Latin America itself.
It’s not the latest Hollywood production, the ultimate sound experience, or Apple’s next level consumer lock-in product line. And despite its ominous ring, it isn’t the enemy either, like how the NSA is framed as one. THE SYSTEM* indicates the complex interaction of the economy, professional practice and personal choice. The asterisk draws attention to the ambiguity of such a term while hinting at an intention to change ‘it’, whatever it is.
‘To beyond or not to be’, our slogan over these years, has proven its relevance. By becoming the norm it’s topicality has been lost. It is time to move forward and take new directions.
THE SYSTEM* indicates the complex interaction of the economy, professional practice and personal choice. The asterisk draws attention to the ambiguity of such a term, while hinting at an intention to change ‘it’, whatever it is. What the system does, on the other hand, is perhaps more easily understood: it organizes things. The system is a set of institutions and infrastructures that shape the contours of resource flows and modulate the rhythms of material cycles. The system doesn’t just distribute and determine availability though; it frames the imagination and conditions creative activity there within.
Two recent trends have recently emerged from the United States’ real estate market that pick up on societal transformations in the way architecture and the city is inhabited. If synchronized, they stand to alter the principles underriding contemporary logics of urban development. They do so by embodying an alternative system of values, framing its spatial articulation as a critical design project.
On February 28, the Shenzhen Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB) ended its three-month run. The venue will be demolished as part of the transformation of the Shekou waterfront district from factories and warehouses into a cosmopolitan cultural destination. This is indicative of the incredible energy being exerted on developing the city, and the money available to do so.