Office Upgrades

The Workplace of the Future Design Competition revealed a wealth of fresh ideas and a bit of uncertainty about exactly where we’re headed.

Screen Play

For today’s kids, the line between the physical and the digital is often a seamless blur.

Shigeru Ban’s Soho Shoebox

The Japanese architect’s new store for Camper is a crisp reflection of the global brand’s anywhere aesthetic. As a work of architecture, it’s an unusually muddled New York typology: a single-story, freestanding pavilion of the type sometimes called a “taxpayer”—a placeholder for a future, bigger building. But as an expression of pan-global design, it’s sharp as a tack.

Acting Like a Start-Up

After designing offices for a veritable who’s who of Silicon Valley tech firms, Studio O+A has a new challenge: bringing the behemoths back to their renegade roots. What was once an out-of-the-way corner of American industry dominates the popular imagination. And O+A finds itself at its center, designing work spaces for an endlessly renewing list of hot start-ups.

Here but Not Here

Architecture has yet to acknowledge the impact of social media on our experience of physical space. Our experience of the world around us has changed to a degree not seen since the arrival of trains and cars. But it’s not clear to me that the process of design has meaningfully acknowledged that.

Roman & Williams (Metropolis)

Anachronistic tastes land Roman & Williams two of New York’s hottest hotels—and a quiet, little brick apartment building that looks like it might be more than a century old. ( On a cool, damp morning in New York, Roman & Williams—the noms de guerre of the husband-and-wife designers Stephen Alesch and Robin Standefer—stand on a […]

The Big Apple Store (Metropolis)

New York tourism gets a 21st-century interface. (link) (Photo Albert Vecerka/Esto/courtesy NYC & Co) The challenge of being a tourist is getting a map of the city inside your head. This is easier in New York than in most places—thanks to the grid—but in January it became easier still, at least for visitors to the […]

Infrastructure: Tracking the Future (Metropolis Mag)

The city begins crumbling as soon as it has been constructed. Beneath every new project lies the rubble of another. In the United States today, that’s an important insight. Infrastructure is being revealed, in the sense that it’s attracting more attention than it has in decades. But that attention is divided between repair and renewal, despair and hope.

James Corner: The Long View (Metropolis)

Corner has spent the last 25 years becoming that guy in a deliberate attempt to reinvent the field of landscape architecture by pushing aside its second-fiddle status and antiurban tendencies and claiming a more ambitious agenda: to design the postindustrial city.

Saint Brad (Metropolis)

“So you’re a design junkie too?” Brad Pitt said to me, leaning out the door of an RV parked in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans one evening in December.

Carbon Neutral U (Metropolis)

In the age of global warming, the greening of the American college campus is a largely grassroots effort driven by students, faculty, and in-house staff dedicated to sustainable thinking.

The Accidental Environmentalists (Metropolis)

A chronic problem with employee retention led this pragmatic client to building green.