The Growing Popularity of Temporary Architecture

In the age of food trucks, pop-up stores, and the Burning Man city, is it time to rethink the notion of "temporary" architecture?
December 22, 2011, 2pm PST | Chris Steins | @urbaninsight
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The New York Times' design and architecture blogger, Allison Arieff, reflects on a panel discussion with Robert Kronenburg, an architect, professor at University of Liverpool and portable/temporary/mobile guru, and explores the popularity -- and perhaps permanence -- of temporary architecture.

Arieff writes: "The architecture that's been making news is fast and fleeting: pop-up shops, food carts, marketplaces, performance spaces. And while many manifestations of the genre have jumped the shark (i.e., a Toys R Us pop-up shop), there is undeniable opportunity in the temporary: it is an apt response to a civilization in flux. And like many prevailing trends - collaborative consumption (a.k.a., "sharing"), community gardens, barter and trade - 'temporary' is so retro that it's become radical."

Mike Lydon, founding principal of The Street Plans Collaborative, is featured prominently in the article, arguing for "injecting spontaneity into urban development." Lydon sees "these temporary interventions (what he calls 'tactical urbanism') as short-term actions to effect long-term change."

Examples mentioned in the article include San Francisco's Pavement to Parks, New York's "gutter cafes," Build a Better Block in Dallas, Brooklyn's De Kalb Market, San Francisco's PROXY project, and Forest City's 5M Project in downtown San Francisco.

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Published on Monday, December 19, 2011 in The New York Times
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