Monthly Archives

February 2010

February 28, 2010


Why are Arab architects and engineers obsessed with fences? There's always a big fence surrounding every building, usually around the site perimeter. I can understand a fence around a prison, maybe a zoo, but why everywhere? What's the point? It don't think security is a…
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SAM StreetUrban
February 23, 2010

SAM Street: Winter only?

Mayor Bloomberg just announced that the┬áTimes Square pedestrian pilot project will become permanent. This means that it's now a completely pedestrian only street all year round from now on. This is great for tourism and public health and safety. They'll start designing permanent landscape architecture…
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February 22, 2010

Qortuba Public Park

I shot that video today walking through the park. It's just as filthy as when I last saw it. It's a shame, because the park itself is pretty decent. You can hear the birds and the trees are healthy. What would it take for the…
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February 21, 2010

Wasted Space

A wonderfully simple video about efforts to retrofit suburbia. There are a few things we can take that apply to Kuwait. We don't have the problem of having to 'fill in' the gaps, because most of our suburbs are very densely packed. The thing I…
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February 18, 2010

Facebook Activism

I was strolling through Qortuba Public Park this afternoon. The place is actually pretty decent, there's a fair amount of benches and lots of trees and grass. The problem is that it was filthy. There was litter everywhere. The bathrooms were disgraceful. The security guard…
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February 16, 2010

Jazeera Magazine

A few months ago Jasem, Amenah and I were interviewed for an article in the in-flight magazine of Jazeera Airways. The issue is now in print and is on all of their planes. Thanks again to Lara Dunston and Terence Carter for taking the time…
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February 14, 2010

Qortuba Block 2

I'm going to try a quick redesign of Qortuba Block 2. First, here it is as is: I'm going to restrict myself into not altering the inlets to Qortuba, and leave the institutional buildings on the main road as they are. What I can change…
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February 11, 2010

Efficiently Electric

First of all, I don't really care about climate change. I'm not a denier, but I think it's not the best 'call to action'. People generally respond more to financial incentives rather than moral obligations. I believe that if we prioritize efficiency, then everything else…
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February 9, 2010

An Arrogant Architect

Building on Jasem's post a few days ago, i'd like to talk further about the responsibilities of an architect in Kuwait and the perception people have of our profession. Here are a few of the comments from that post: "Another problem we have here (this…
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February 8, 2010

Sun Orientation

When deciding to buy a plot of land or a new house, never forget to bring a compass. You always need to know the orientation of the site to know where the sun would be. The sun predictably rises from the East, arches high across…
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