Smithsonian

Over the last several decades, researchers have examined how our cities deplete natural resources and change the climate and ecosystems of their surrounding areas. But new evidence shows that such impacts aren't a purely modern phenomenon.
Jan 9, 2014   Smithsonian
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is bound up in intersecting issues of place, history and geography, among other things. Two Israeli architects believe architecture and urban design can help lead to an agreeable solution.
Aug 27, 2013   Smithsonian
In the 1980s and 90s, a pair of accomplished architecture firms were asked to design restaurants for the world's most famous, and formulaic, fast food chain. See what happened when the avant garde rethought the golden arches.
Aug 4, 2013   Smithsonian
Published to coincide with World Refugee Day, Smithsonian has assembled an interactive map of the 50 largest refugee camps in the world. Many of the camps, which together house 1.9 million people, are comparable in size to medium-sized U.S. cities.
Jun 21, 2013   Smithsonian
With Earth Engine, Google has compiled decades of images taken by Earth-observing satellites. The tool is meant for "scientists, independent researchers, and nations...to detect changes, map trends and quantify differences on the Earth's surface."
May 9, 2013   Smithsonian
Jimmy Stamp decodes the mysterious color-coded markings used by public works departments around the country to indicate underground infrastructure.
May 8, 2013   Smithsonian
Jerry Adler examines the emerging field of “quantitative urbanism,” which aims to use mathematical formulas to unveil and explain the universal properties shared by cities.
Apr 30, 2013   Smithsonian
How did childhood visions of future cities differ for kids growing up in the 1980s when compared to the 1960s or today? Matt Novak shares a short film from 1983 that captures the prescient urban visions of students.
Apr 24, 2013   Smithsonian
Ever wonder what downtown Boston looked like on the eve of the Civil War? This photograph taken from a hot air balloon by James Wallace Black is thought to be the oldest aerial photo still in existence. Google Earth eat your heart out.
Apr 5, 2013   Smithsonian
Claire Martin examines research conducted by engineering firm Arup and the Clinton Climate Initiative into the actions that cities are taking to reduce their emissions and identifies five cities, including one surprise, that are leading the charge.
Mar 15, 2013   Smithsonian
Former <em>Times</em> architecture critic Nicolai Ouroussoff pens a profile of the Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas, whose "most provocative—and in many ways least understood—contribution to the cultural landscape is as an urban thinker."
Aug 24, 2012   Smithsonian