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Will Flinders St Station be the next Guggenheim?

The international architectural competition for the redevelopment of Melbourne’s iconic Flinders St Station is throwing up some fabulous ideas, but there are questions about the selection process

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Annals of archibabble

Architects are brilliant visual communicators but when it comes to words some can’t resist resorting to dense, obscure and pretentious “archibabble”

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Is this the best way to appoint an architect?

It took some trouble but I finally got an answer from Monash University to my question concerning how it went about appointing internationally renowned architect Moshe Safdie to design the new building for the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music.

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Is there a metaphor in there?

According to my young hipster architecture advisers, Myrtle and Beryl, there’s a great big Architectural Metaphor underlying the appearance of the Melbourne Recital Centre. Before reading on, look at the exhibit for a couple of moments to see if you Get It (there are two buildings there – it’s the white one on the right). Personally, [...]

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Is too much Gehry never enough?

There are literally dozens and dozens of Frank Gehry-designed buildings scattered across the globe and more in the pipeline. Even Sydney’s University of Technology has acquired its own Gehry. As brilliant and talented as Frank Gehry is, there’s a sameness about all those leant-over facades, distorted planes and bug-eyed windows. A handful of highly distinctive [...]

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Is “eyes on the street” straining it?

If people know only one thing about Jane Jacobs, it’s usually the phrase “eyes on the street”. She coined it to describe the idea that streets with plenty of activity and, most of all, custodians who care about what goes on in them, will be safe and secure streets. Jacob’s key objective in her famous [...]

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Why don’t architects use colour more?

About a month ago I was asked by a reporter for The Age, Susy Freeman-Green, why architects are so tentative with colour on the exteriors of buildings. She’d observed many small apartment buildings going up in the inner city were made of grey slabs of concrete. On an overcast day, Melbourne could seem awfully leaden. [...]

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