Fletcher Studio

By David Fletcher | Fletcher Studio's Wunderkammer: Articles on Landscape, Urbanism, Art, Ecology, Typography, Unicorns, Music, Birds, you name it.... Enjoy!

For L.A. Street Vendors, a Step Toward Legality

Decriminalization gives vendors a measure of safety from a potential crackdown on immigrants. But advocates say there’s still work to be done.<p>After literal decades of fruitless back-and-forth in City Hall, Los Angeles City Council appears to have finally taken measurable action on the issue of …

Los Angeles

San Francisco Takes a Step Back From Raised Bike Lanes

Sometimes they just can’t prevent cars from parking in the pathway.<p>In the battle of cars versus raised bike lanes, the cars just won a small battle in San Francisco.<p>The city had planned on installing a two-inch raised, mountable lane on a section of Polk Street, where, on average, cars hit one …

San Francisco

The Great British Vegetable Crisis

Extreme weather has caused British vegetable shortages—but is the real problem an unsustainable food system?<p>This winter has brought unusually icy and rainy weather to Southern Europe, causing floods and ruining the Mediterranean vegetable crops on which British grocery stores rely. As a result, …

Food Security

The City Obsessed With Dogs Made an App Just for Them

It was only a matter of time before a canine-friendly app sprung up Tel Aviv.<p>Tel Aviv wasn’t kidding when it claimed to be the dog-friendliest city in the world. The Israeli city has one of the highest numbers of dogs per capita—1 for every 17 residents—and the pups’ pampered treatment is enviable. …

Cities

A Data Visualizer Created a Mossy Map of Berlin's Green Spaces

Sebastian Meier used vegetation and a laser cutter to show the city’s parks and ponds.<p>If you wanted to know the locations of Berlin’s many parks, you could Google them. Or if you’re Sebastian Meier, you could reach over to the wall and <i>feel</i> them, thanks to this nifty map made from verdant vegetation.<p>…

Housing

An Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

How many birds do we pass every day without ever really stopping to look at them? <b>Luke Stephenson’s</b> unconventional series celebrates our feathered …

Nature

A/D/O Design Academy's "Utopia vs Dystopia": Celebrating creative, scientific and inspiring makers and thinkers at the impressive new Greenpoint space

We were quick to visit A/D/O's recently renovated Greenpoint space when it was unveiled, but our return this past weekend offered an opportunity to see it in action as the design community center it was always imagined to be. Attendees were eager to learn and be inspired by each other and the …

Design

Link About It: Urinals Encourage Public Peeing in Paris

There's no stopping public urinators, and now the city of Paris has (like many other places) decided to support the act—but with a beneficial outcome. Now with the Uritrottoir (which translates to "pavement urinal") people can pee on the street <i>and</i> help public gardens grow. Each Uritrottoir has two …

Design

Ross Pavilion International Design Competition Launches for Emblematic Edinburgh Site

The Ross Development Trust in collaboration with the City of Edinburgh Council and Malcolm Reading Consultants has launched a global search for an …

Baseline bus rapid transit corridor design gets council's OK

Plan involves expropriation of 15 properties, partial expropriation of 200 more<p>Ottawa city council has unanimously approved a proposal to build a …

Urban Planning

The millionaire's darling: Zaha Hadid's urban artworks – in pictures

The late architect was a favourite of wealthy clients in part for her bold visions of futuristic cities, including extensive subterranean development – a collection of which are being displayed at Zaha Hadid: Early Paintings and Drawings at the Serpentine Sackler gallery, London, until Sunday

Architecture

The High Line's Next Balancing Act

The famed “linear park” may be a runaway success, but it’s also a symbol of Manhattan’s rising inequality. Can its founder help other cities learn from its mistakes?<p>When Robert Hammond first conceived of turning a disused elevated railway on Manhattan’s West Side into a high-design “linear park,” …

Housing

Chattanooga’s forgotten alleyways come back to life with architectural installations

Passageways is a community outreach project that ‘activates the urban alley through architecture’<p>Four alleyways in downtown Chattanooga, Tennessee have been reclaimed and transformed into dynamic public spaces thanks to a community outreach project by AIA Tennessee and River City Company, the …

American Museum of Natural History

Constrained and tamed: Will the Elbe be deepened again?

A court in Germany will decide whether Hamburg's Elbe River should be deepened to allow mega freighters to more easily reach the inland port from the North Sea. Environmentalists had filed a lawsuit against the move.<p>"Finally," says Axel Goderath, "finally the long wait is coming to an end." For …

Urban Planning

Lakefront Trail separation project moves one step forward

Dividing the Lakefront Trail into separate paths for cyclists and pedestrians to help ease congestion and reduce collisions moved a step forward Wednesday when the Chicago Park District board approved a $1.7 million contract for engineering and design services.<p>The approval of the two-year, $1.7 …

Airports

Transforming the unused area under Toronto's Gardiner Expressway into a public art space

Soon, the unused and disregarded space under the Gardiner Expressway will become a park, now known as The Bentway — or maybe it's not quite right to …

China Tries 'Vertical Forests' for its Air Pollution Problem - VICE

A "vertical forest" will soon be gobbling up carbon dioxide in the pollution-sick Chinese city of Nanjing. Italian architect Stefano Boeri announced plans to build a complex with two towers that will hold 1,100 trees and 2,500 cascading plants and shrubs sprouting from rooftops and balconies in the …

China

Who's Still Fighting Climate Change? The U.S. Military

Norfolk, Virginia<p>Despite political gridlock over global warming, the Pentagon is pushing ahead with plans to protect its assets from sea-level rise and other impacts. Here's how.<p>Ten times a year, the Naval Station Norfolk floods. The entry road swamps. Connecting roads become impassable. Crossing …

Climate Change

Seven more LA streets will be treated to ‘Great Streets’ makeovers

Improvements are coming to streets in East Hollywood, Watts, Park Mesa Heights, and more<p>Since it’s introduction in 2013, LA’s Great Streets Program has reinvigorated thoroughfares with the addition of such pedestrian friendly features as plazas, art, and safer crosswalks.<p>The streets and commercial …

Los Angeles

15 Meatless Snacks and Appetizers for the Perfect Super Bowl Party

The Super Bowl is this Sunday! Have you planned your game day menu yet? Every year, millions of people tune in to watch the big game. Even if you’re …

Vegan

Vegan recipe video: Here’s how to make chickpea avocado sandwiches

<b>This simple chickpea avocado sandwich recipe takes the fuss out of lunch.</b><p>It’s really quick and easy to put together and uses just a few basic …

This Public Seating Installation Was Inspired By Snowbanks That Gather Around Trees And Street Lights

Photography by Maxime Brouillet<p>When it was a little more sunny and a lot less snowy in Quebec City, Canada, Atelier Pierre Thibault designed a public …

Architecture

Meet the Chicanos of Japan

This short film explores one of the lesser-known subcultures thriving in Tokyo and Osaka.<p><i>This article originally appeared in Spanish on our sister site, CityLab Latino.</i><p>The imagery looks plucked directly from East L.A. in 1995: lowriders cruising slowly down narrow streets or parked in long lines on …

Japan

What If Bike Paths Looked Like Subway Maps?

Think maps of bicycle lanes are too complicated? This guy’s fixed it.<p>CityLab readers: Sometimes you scare us.<p>Not only are you intimidatingly smart, many of you are professional experts in the topics we try to cover. Others are self-taught aficionados in urban planning or cartography—in other words, …

GIS

New York Collective Paints Over Baroque Paintings with Art School Scrawlings | The Creators Project

<i>The Bruce High Quality Foundation, Massacre of the Innocents,2015-17, oil on canvas, 203.2 x 304.8 cm, 80 x 120 in. Courtesy Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, London. Copyright the artist.</i><p>The transient space of an art studio, its activity and whirlpool of ideas, finds form with the Baroque styles of …

Painting

Refúgio na Floresta / Uhlik architekti

Refúgio na Floresta / Uhlik architekti<p>Arquitetos<p>Localização<p>Central Bohemian Region, República Tcheca<p>Área<p>16.0 m²<p>Ano do projeto<p>2013<p>Fotografias<p>Equipe de …

Green movement 'greatest threat to freedom', says Trump adviser

Climate-change denier Myron Ebell says he expects Trump to withdraw the US from the global climate change agreement<p>The environmental movement is “the greatest threat to freedom and prosperity in the modern world”, according to an adviser to the US president Donald Trump’s administration.<p>Myron …

Climate Change

This New Riverside Park In Dallas Is Designed To Fill With Water When It Floods

The 10,000-acre Trinity River Park creates much-needed civic space along the river that divides the city, by incorporating excess water into its adaptable design<p>Since Dallas was first settled in 1841, it’s had a problem with its river. The Trinity, which runs through the center of the city, is a …

Urban Planning

How A Smart University Design Can Help Revitalize A City

Monterrey Tec's plan to reintegrate with its surrounding neighborhood is bringing over $1 billion in investments to a previously neglected area.<p>When the Tecnológico de Monterrey was built in 1943, all that surrounded it were wide-open fields. Slowly, Monterrey Tec grew into a multi-campus …

Urban Design