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Links for April 21st from 16:49 to 17:46

by Mel Starrs on April 24, 2010

in News

These are my links for April 21st from 16:49 to 17:46:

  • Bring back Victorian values | Architecture | Art and design | The Observer – "A generation of young architects has grown up and been given the opportunity to prove their worth. British architecture was stagnant in the early 90s and now it's not, for which some of the credit is due to Labour.<br />
    …Many of the new schools and hospitals are at best very ordinary, at worst soul-destroying. Their problem, as in other fields, has been the New Labour belief that you could hand over the delivery of social benefits to the private sector.<br />
    In the planning of office blocks and blocks of flats, and in the building of schools and offices, the same thing happens. Worthy public aims are stated. Ambitious targets are set. The private sector is entrusted with achieving the aims and targets which, as it will, put its own interests first. So the worthy aims are compromised."
  • Straw houses: I’ll huff and I’ll puff… | The Economist – "California, of course, is already thoroughly earthquake-proofed. But straw buildings of this sort might do well in seismically active places that are less wealthy. Spurred by the earthquake that devastated Pakistan in 2005, Darcey Donovan, a structural engineer from Truckee, California, set up a not-for-profit straw-bale-construction operation that has since built 17 houses there. She has been designing straw-bale houses in California for ten years and lives in one that she and her husband built in 2007. It has two stories, three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a two-car garage…<br />
    As Mr Eisenberg observes, “the lesson of the Three Little Pigs isn’t to avoid straw. It’s that you don’t let a pig build your house.” "