Wednesday, December 12, 2012

read more: 10 reasons millennials might abandon big cities

The growing urban constituency of hipster parents is not timid about making itself heard. Educated and in professional jobs, they are equipped to organize and galvanize. "They make clear the kinds of things they want to see," says Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory, who created a Young Professionals Kitchen Cabinet when he took office in 2006. "We've got to work fast. Think how accustomed they are to speed. ... They expect it. They also expect things within their community to transform at a much faster rate."

Monday, December 10, 2012

a holiday lull

[From Rue]
My apologies for what has been, and what will be, a very slow December here on percentblog. Between work, craft fairs, personal commitments, and celebrations posts will be few and far between.

On a more productive note, the latest issue of Rue Magazine is out and features many holiday celebrations and gifts. I will be headed back to the East Coast for a week with my family and couldn't be more thrilled. There may be a post or two before I go, but if not, happy holidays.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

read more: crowdsourcing local development

"The history of modern financial investment has been the story of people and their money moving farther apart into abstraction, to the point where most of us don't know where our investments (if we have any) have gone. But shorten the distance between those two points, and things start to change. Put your money into a building you can see in your neighborhood, and suddenly you might care more about the quality of the tenant, or the energy efficiency of the design, or the aesthetics of the architecture."
- The Real Estate Deal that Could Change the Future of Everything, Atlantic Cities

Monday, November 26, 2012

tumblights 11/26

I had a lot of projects due to day (all of which will be shared soon) and thought tumblights weren't going to happen today. But here it is, just in time, a celebration of the power of citrus.

Clockwise from top left:

Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

design like you give a damn

[Tshirt. From Selfless Tee]
 Last week was packed. There was exciting news (Partner-in-Crime passed his grad school 'qual' and is now an official doctoral candidate.) There were parties (pre-launch party for the wonderful brika.com curated shop.) But mostly there were conferences. I attended both Greenbuild and Architecture for Humanity's Design Like You Give a Damn conference.

I struggled to think of how to share all the amazing stories and projects I learned about at DLYGAD and was thrilled to find out the presentations are all online. Check them out here. The conference was quite packed so I only saw two of the four panels- on EcoDesign and Security, along with the keynotes. Sadly, the amazing open mic talks are not included. For six hours, participants gave a 7 minute talk on a project they had completed. I spent the first two hours of the conference mesmerized and could have listened all day if not for the panels that occurred at the same time.

When I arrived, I was surprised at how far many participants had traveled. By the end, I understood why. Though just a one day conference, it was worth traveling to be there. Every participant and speaker deeply cared about design for good. Hope to see you all there next year. Until then, I'll be watching these videos when I need some inspiration.

Monday, November 19, 2012

tumblights 11/19

This week's tumblights visually are very connected in color palette but with very different materials- photography, plastic and wood. Something about them is very spring like, which counters the dreary weather that has me making chicken soup and lounging in bed. I'm hoping to be 100% for Thanksgiving, which will be split between friends and Partner-in-Crime's family. What are your plans?

Clockwise: 

Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Plaid Friday

I love the supportive craft community here in the Bay Area. I've learned so much about starting a business, finding shops, and following your passion from the amazing artisans and artists in the East Bay Arts Collective (as well as SF Etsy.)

Here's your chance to get in on that awesome-ness. I'll be offering 20% discount on Friday with the code PLAIDFRIDAY and that same code will get you fabulous discounts at the following EBAC shops. Thank you all for your support.


Participating Shops:

*30% OFF*
Girl on Bike - Nature inspired jewelry made from bicycle innertubes
http://www.etsy.com/shop/girlonbike

*25% OFF*
Tangleweeds - rustic, elegant hand-crafted brass and steel jewelry
http://www.tangleweeds.etsy.com/

*20% OFF*
Mangosteen - Handcrafted silver jewelry
http://www.etsy.com/shop/mangosteenjewelry

Impressedbynature - handmade pressed flower jewelry
www.IMPRESSEDbynature.etsy.com

Percent - handcrafted jewelry from vintage, natural and re-purposed materials.
www.percent.etsy.com  <<<<<--- hello="hello" i="i" nbsp="nbsp" oh="oh" there="there">

*10% OFF*
Fresh Edamami - Origami art pieces & accessories
www.etsy.com/shop/freshedamami

Andrea I Jewelry - www.andreaijewelry.etsy.com

*FREE SHIPPING*
The Mice Art - Art, prints, & photogragraphy inspired by nature
   

Monday, November 12, 2012

tumblights 11/12


This week's tumblights are worth clicking through to the original source. Each is an interesting story of either a environmental intervention or new ideas about energy use and creation. From Cayteano Ferrer's invisible street art to retro-looking drinking glasses that collect solar energy and can charge your smartphone, this week's tumblights are more than just pretty pictures. 


Clockwise from top left:
3. Energy Trumps Cards identify environmental properties of materials via Inhabitat 

Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest.  

Friday, November 9, 2012

read more: making public transit safer


"An unwelcoming physical environment and unpredictable schedules are the greatest fears for female transit riders. While budgetary shortfalls might be to blame for the lack of safety innovations, Loukaitou-Sideris says there are low-cost solutions. Sometimes it's as simple as relocating the bus stop. "You can put the stop half a block away, but by a business that's open late and that has pedestrian traffic," Loukaitou-Sideris, she suggests, adding that many women reported walking farther to a different stop that was better lit or had more people around."

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

read more: election day special

While nervously awaiting the results of this year's Presidential election, various Senate and House races plus the 15+ propositions I got the opportunity to vote for here in California, I'm exploring the New York Times election coverage. They consulted designer Todd Oldham to talk ballot design. There's a great video, too. 

"Most of us don’t think about ballot design until we’re in the voting booth and asking ourselves which oval to fill in or which box to check so that our candidates actually get our support....The confusion is understandable. In American elections, ballots are rarely designed by professional designers. And not surprisingly, form follows dysfunction."
- Ballot Design with Todd Oldham, The New York Times

Monday, November 5, 2012

tumblights: 11/5

Clockwise from top left:

Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest.  

learning sf: laurel from public bikes

[Paula Scher for Public Bike's Public Works project]


In today’s learning sf, I sat down with Laurel Collins wholeft the world of industrial automation to first join the team at TchoChocolate before starting her current gig at Public Bikes. Public Bikes is adesign-focused bike company bringing bikes to the masses. They are about tolaunch their most affordable- and approachable- bike yet. I sat down withLaurel in a café across from their Valencia Street pop up shop, one of threePublic Bikes shops in the Bay Area, to talk biking and San Francisco.

Be sure to check out some upcoming events at Public Bikes atthe end of the interview!

Did you bike before taking a job at Public Bikes?
I’m generally athletic. I played soccer in college and aftermy soccer career, I started doing triathlons, because once an athlete, alwaysan athlete. I needed something to train for. So I was biking for the triathlons.I was not a casual biker. For me, bikes and cities did not come together. Itdidn’t occur to me, especially with a small child. Working with Public hasopened my eyes to a completely different world. Even with a child, you caninvolve bikes in your life to a much greater degree that I ever thoughpossible.

So if it wasn’t biking, what drew you to Public Bikes?
There was a philosophical match for me with the company. I’mpassionate about urban spaces and my own personal environment, having it be pleasingand rich and functional. San Francisco, for me, personifies everything I wouldlike in a city. It is functional, you can bring up a family here, there areparks, there’s color, different neighborhoods. It’s eclectic.  It’s just a great place to work andlive, so for me adding bikes to that whole mix a no-brainer.

Now I’m hyper aware of all the passion around biking thereis here. It’s one reason we’re on Valencia Street; it’s the center of the bikecommuting community.

How does design play a role at Public Bikes?
Our products are oriented around design and lifestyle. Ourcustomers are women who maybe haven’t biked in 5 years and they want to go downto the market with their functional, beautiful basket and put all their fruitsand vegetables in it, and go to work and tool around town and look good doingit. We’re not a super high tech bike-y type of company.

Those people are going to find those bikes, so what’sreally great is you are expanding the market for people like me who get here orto other cities and realize how much more convenient biking can be. Design hasplayed such a role in the company… founder of DWR
The accessibility of the bikes is part of the design of thebikes and the company. It is interesting to me that so few bike companies thathave anything quite like public bikes. They are sort of a nod to the past- theold French mixte, the Dutch step-through. I think people are getting back tothe time, when things were simpler and more carefree. When I look at the brandas an outsider, it’s fun. It’s playful. It’s almost like being a kid again.Back to the pure enjoyment of riding a bike, I get see that everyday [whenpeople go on test rides.] It’s probably the best thing about my job.

We don’t want to be any way exclusive. We want to beinclusive- we just want people on bikes.

Friday, November 2, 2012

read more: after sandy

Much has already been written about Hurricane/Superstorm Sandy. Here are a few pieces covering design, community building, and adapting to a changing world.

Airbnb may not have read my reflections but they, along with several other companies, have been responsive according to Fast Company. Citizens are banding together to assist the overwelmed disaster relief teams in FastCo Exist. My former boss wrote about preparing for climate change in The Nation and Next American City covered what this means for designers.

"Airbnb is to waive its fees on all properties in the areas devastated by Sandy, after one of its homeowners offered up her rooms for free to victims of the disaster. The offer stands until November 7 and covers New York, the Hamptons, Providence, New Haven, and Atlantic City. It also urged its hosts to lower prices."
- Andy Dugdale for Fast Company

"We’re not from the Red Cross, FEMA, New York Cares, the public housing police or any other city agency. We’ve never met before and we aren’t affiliated with any one organization, school, or group. We come from all corners of the city: Elmhurst, Crown Heights, Cobble Hill, and even downtown neighborhoods like Chelsea and the West Village, where the power’s still out. Each of us showed up this morning for the first time, after we saw a notice on a website, got an email, or saw a Tweet that volunteers were needed at 46 Hester Street on the Lower East Side, where a local Asian community organization called CAAAV has become the hub for an almost completely self-organized aid effort."

- Anya Kamenetz, FastCo Exist

"What can we do? Three major options: (1) abandon our coastal cities and retreat inland, (2) stay put and try to adapt to the menacing new conditions or (3) stop burning planet-warming fossil fuels as fast as possible."
- Mike Tidwell, The Nation

"For architects, designers and planners, this means stepping up. We need to redesign and rebuild our infrastructure, and we need to do it sooner rather than later. Sandy gave many of us a few days out of the office. Now it’s time to get back to work for a shared future." 
Eric Corey Freed, Next American City

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

two new way to find percent jewelry + a new rue

[Happy Halloween!]
I have three sweet treats today. Monday I spent the morning visiting various city and state government buildings in order to officially secure my business license for both jewelry and design services. This step has been a long time coming and I'm thrilled to finally take on clients for design consulting and also be able to sell my jewelry in stores. But don't worry, you can still always visit my Etsy shop.

In fact, I've already accepted my first store! 5th Stitch Collective is a great boutique with a mix of handcrafted and curated clothing, jewelry and gifts. It's located at 2352 Market in the Castro in San Francisco. I'm honored to be part of their collection.

Plus, I'll be selling this Friday at Art Murmur/First Fridays in Oakland. You can find me at Uptown Fenders (401 26th Street) from 6-10pm. I haven't done a craft fair since this summer so I'm thrilled to get to interact with shoppers and hear feedback on all the new pieces. Stop by and say hello!

Finally, see the spooky cover up there? The newest Rue came out today. So many great stories in there, including the Halloween fashion shoot that gave us our cover image.

Monday, October 29, 2012

weathering Sandy together

I spent the night working on another post about some exciting news, but kept returning to news of Sandy and the devastation wrought on the East Coast. Reading Facebook and Twitter to check on friends, I saw several posts asking why New York City, in particular, was not better prepared. The answers to that are myriad, but it got me thinking what could be done better in the future. Sadly, storms like Sandy are only becoming more frequent. No single weather incident can be directly linked to climate change, but Sandy fit all the checkboxes, including that the sea level rise was far greater than predicted.

So what can be done to better prepare? Beyond the macro-level of major construction renovations and government programs, there are many small scale possibilities. 

Code for America developed Prepared.ly to help citizens in Austin prepare for wildfires, including checklists and the ability to track your progress securing your home, real time information on risk, and direct connection to fire safety professionals. Imagine an app that helped local residents prepare for a storm including checklists for grocery shopping and prepping the home, tips on safety in case of power and water outage, up-to-date storm information, and the ability to send information to emergency responders. 

Much of the concern for safety in a storm like Sandy is the ability to either evacuate safely or prepare to wait out the storm. With the rise of the collaborative consumption economy, what are the possibilities for collaborative evacuations and storm preparedness? Imagine Lyft, Zipcar, and RideShare all coordinating drivers with passengers. Less cars on the road makes a quicker evacuations and helps ensure those without wheels have a way out. Airbnb users in safe areas could post emergency availability at affordable rates so cost wouldn't be a hinderance. For those in affected areas who do not need to evacuate, what are the collaborative possibilities for buying supplies instead of grocery stores being flooded with panicked shoppers hoarding water? 

Clearly, these are only a small part of the solution. For instance, many of those most at risk are elderly, and less likely to be utilizing these forms of technology. But what if, from the West Coast, I could secure a safe ride for a family member in New York online or if, through an app, could find someone in her apartment building to check in once the power and thus, her phone line, went out? 

There are better ways for us to design our cities to deal with changing conditions, but there are also ways for us to design around our changing society to build better communities that are able to weather storms together. Let's figure them out. Fast.

Until then, please consider donating $10 or how ever much you are compelled to the Red Cross for the Disaster Relief fund. It truly all makes a difference. 

tumblights 10/28

Clockwise from top right: 

Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest.  

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

new percent jewelry


What's this? Oh yes- new jewelry on percent.etsy.com! As you can see, I've been very inspired by crystals and natural stones, as well as playing with new textile materials. There are even more new items than I've shown here, so hop on over and take a look.

Plus, this is only the start of my new collection so I have more pieces that aren't listed or that are still in development. Stay tuned for more percent jewelry news.

Monday, October 15, 2012

tumblights 10/15

Note: Tumblights will be moving to Mondays, to better fit in my work schedule, until further notice. This move will help posting be more reliable and, hopefully, reliably delightful. 

I've been playing with crystals and other stones lately in finishing my fall collection (to be launched on Etsy tomorrow!) so it's not surprise they've leaked into other areas of my life, including dominating my tumblr stream. 


Clockwise from top:


Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest.  

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

read more: technological momentum

"According to Hughes’s theory, the technologies we end up using aren’t determined by any objective measure of quality. In fact, the tools we choose are often deeply flawed. They just happened to meet our particular social needs at a particular time and then became embedded in our culture." 

- "Why Your Car Isn't Electric," New York Times

Monday, October 8, 2012

museum spotlight: field connections

[Photo by Matt Millman/ SF Moma website.]

A few weeks ago, I visited the SF Moma with the goal of seeing the Cindy Sherman exhibit that has been getting press left and right. Deservedly so, but the exhibit that made me gasp upon entering was a different one, Field Connections. 

"Can there be architecture without buildings? What if a wall or a floor went on forever? What happens when people move through a room? From immersive installations to intricate drawings, The works in Field Conditions pose provocative questions about the construction, experience, and representation of space." 

Most dramatic was the dual installation above, but even smaller drawings done in graphite on beige paper were complex and visually perplexing. Anyone interested in modern art or architecture should put this on their SF to-do list before it closes on January 6. 

Quote and image from the SF Moma website. 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

read more: ronen kadushin

"The world is changing if you want it or not, it’s about understanding where it is going, and what you can do about it in a very serious and responsible way, and it’s not about the making money side of it. It’s more about basically putting out or suggesting a way where the troubles, or the catastrophes that are coming to us will be handled, how they will be met. And part of the solution – in the minds of makers and other open-source communities – is the network. The network is a central part of a proposed solution to this." 

Ronen Kadushin interview via Dezeen

furnishly your home

[Furnishly homescreen for Chicago]

Last week a good friend was in town for the 3% Conference (which sounded positively wonderful) and  I got to spend some time catching up on the news of her new job. Diana recently moved to Chicago to be the Marketing head of Furnishly. She describes Furnishly as "Ebay meets Craigslist meets Pintrest." According to Furnishly, their mission is "to create the first ever digital consumer marketplace dedicated to the sale of local furnishings for your home or office." I poked around on the San Francisco Furnishly page and here a few of my favorites*.



Furnishly is a place where individuals and stores can list furniture, both new and quality secondhand/ vintage. The photo-filled layout makes it easy to browse quickly by furniture type or you can visit the page of your favorite local furniture shop. Sadly, the biggest market currently is Chicago, but for the 33 other cities on the site, Furnishly curates your Craigslist experience for you. I love shopping locally and secondhand, so Furnishly is a great resource for me. Plus, I can definitely see myself selling items there next time I'm moving.

*I didn't link to these because they are probably sold but since Furnishly pulls from Craiglist in cities other than Chicago, there are constantly new items at a range of prices. And if you are in Chicago, you have all sorts of options! 

Monday, October 1, 2012

tumblights 10/1

We measure our days by the cycle of light and darkness, broken down into artificial segments and extending our days with artificial light. This weekend my time moved too quickly, and thus, this post is late. Perhaps these clocks would have kept me on time.




Clockwise, from top right:

Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest.  

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

my secret is out- goldieblox is live!

[I can't believe I finally get to share this picture!]
I'm please to announce that GoldieBlox is here! Back in March I posted my excitement to be working on a secret project, now I'm finally able to share the details. 

GoldieBlox is a construction toy for girls, that is going to inspire the next generation of female engineers. Their mission is to get little girls interested in science, technology, engineering and math the way Lego, K’Nex, Lincoln Logs and Erector sets have done for boys for over 100 years. The idea behind GoldieBlox is genius: it is a construction set + book series starring Goldie, the girl inventor who loves to build. As girls read the book, they get to build along with Goldie. 


GoldieBlox is on its way to being commercially produced, but we need your help. There are three simple actions you can do to bring Goldie to life:
1. Visit the Kickstarter page right now and make a contribution.
2. Like GoldieBlox on Facebook, Follow on Twitter, and Join the email list.
3. Reach out to your personal, professional, and social networks to spread the word.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

tumblights: 9/16

It was a whirlwind week coming back from New York and launching the Rue Anniversary Issue. I can't believe a week ago I was in New York and still had three stories to write. Yesterday was a lovely day off exploring San Francisco with Partner-in-Crime. Check out my Instagram (@percentblog) for our adventures. I came home in the early evening and finally caught up on blogs and tumblr.

When I went to review what I had tumbled and put together today's tumblights, I thought the way they were arranged on the page was already perfect, so here is a slight deviation from the typical form. The top simple and minimalist. The bottom a riot of color. My week in images.

Was your week more minimal or more color riot?

From top left: 

Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest.  

Friday, September 14, 2012

read more: pop-up populism


The pop-up "approach favors low-cost projects, incremental steps, and high levels of community engagement. Its implementation is widespread, ranging from pop-up marketplaces and pavilions to seemingly cosmetic but effective city planning reforms. Small budgets meet less resistance and allow for faster execution, which means the effects of these interventions can be felt more immediately. As a result, the schemes can be adapted as needed, responding quickly to the successes or failures of their forms. Moreover, these projects are often initiated by locals, diverse groups of individuals who can see the demands and aspirations of their respective communities firsthand. The results often become a more direct and intimate response to their sites." [from Kelly Chan for Artinfo.com]

This past weekend in Brooklyn I stumbled across the DeKalb market and had been been meaning to google more about the space. This morning I found an article "Pop-Up Populism: How the Temporary Architecture Craze is Changing Our Relationship to the Built Environment" and wanted to share this quote. Check out the whole article for more interesting thoughts on how cities are evolving. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

rue turns two


Rue turned two today! Our second anniversary issue launched this morning and I am so proud of our team. Look for my byline on 'Treehouse in the Sky.' My absolute favorite story? The amazing modern Hitchcock themed fashion shoot shown on our cover. Lovely!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

remembering 9/11, remembering friends

[Image from Local Projects]

Memorials are a tricky thing to design. To capture a moment and all the lives involved in a way that will resonate for generations is no simple feat. With her design for the Vietnam War Memorial, famously done as a college student, Maya Lin changed memorial design. I remember visiting it in high school. I stopped by several monuments and memorials, without making much of a connection, until my group arrived at the Vietnam Memorial.

[Image from Local Projects]

Today on the 11th Anniversary of 9/11, I want to reflect on another memorial. For the Ground Zero memorial, the Local Project continued Lin's legacy of putting the individual people lost at the center of their design, while updating the ordering system to account both for technology and for the personalities behind each name.  Maya Lin listed the fallen soldiers by the year of their death and then alphabetically. New York based media design firm Local Projects collected 1,800 requests from families of the 9/11 victims and worked out an algorithm to list them with their friends. Groups of firefighters listed together, police officers, members of each plane, office mates and friends. Even strangers who met trapped in the tower and were each other's comfort. A website, names.911memorial.org, was created to aid in finding names at the memorial.

When we remember the people we've loved, we want to remember them as they were. This is why we write inscriptions on headstones. Local Projects ensured that generations from now the victims of 9/11 will not be merely names but people.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

off to new york

[The evolution of New York City's skyline]
I'm off to New York for a childhood friend's wedding, sadly without Partner-in-Crime. Looking forward to a lovely reunion with family friends at the ceremony, along with visits with high school and college friends. Plus, I am going to see The Book of Mormon.

I'm also thrilled to be joining editor Victoria and the wonderful photographer Emily Anderson to shoot a stunning Home Tour for Rue Magazine to be published in our upcoming second Anniversary Issue (out on September 12!)

My last visit to New York was a quick trip just before moving to Berkeley, never enough time in this wonderful, overwhelming city.

Image via Tier1dcOriginally found via SwissMiss

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

recommended reading: logo life


On my bookshelf wish list is Logo Life by BIS publishers which chronicles the evolution of 100 of the most recognizable logos. Many of the logos today are  modernized and simplified version of an early logo. The Texaxo logo is great example. The "T" within a star has been part of their logo 1909. The typeface for the T has been consistent since 1963. Over the course of a few transitions, an inversion of colors and removal of surrounding text and images has lead to the recognizable logo today.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

tumblights 9/2

In honor of the upcoming fashion week, this weekend's tumblights are all about fashion. In this case, about fashion that's doing things a little differently. Shoes that support independent artists, gorgeous eco-resin jewelry, fashion illustrations that incorporate stitching, and a shopping bag that gets a second life as a coat hanger.


Clockwise from top:

I'll be in New York next weekend. I won't be attending any shows but am hoping to spot some fabulous outfits on the street. How are you celebrating Fashion Week?

Thursday, August 23, 2012

measuring sustainability, point by point

[Image from Energy Points website]
I recently posted my 3 Keys to Big Picture Sustainability, a wholly qualitative set of evaluations. Energy Points is an attempt at the opposite- a methodically quantitative set of measurements that accounts for a wide variety of sustainability issues. According to their website, Energy Points' "platform translates all resources into primary energy for direct, one to one comparison of domains such as electricity, water, and fuel." 

A huge problem in understanding sustainability progress, as founder Ory Zik points out to Fast Company's Co.Exist blog, is that the metrics don't line up. Comparing savings in water, electricity, and other resources overlaid with information about the location can be incredibly powerful information for building managers, homeowners and more. When investing money in improvements, these individuals want to be able to make informed decisions and tools like Energy Points give them the ability to do so.

Is this a good thing? On the surface, yes. For buildings managers? Definitely. For designers?  Not always.

Designers need to be able to do the difficult balancing of sustainability themselves. The tradeoffs are about more than energy used. For architects and interior designers, a building's function cannot be measured only in its use of resources but in performance for its users. Energy Points is a useful tool, but for designers cannot be the only measure of sustainability. 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

after the olympics, london 2012

[Failing to disrepair: 2008 Beijing BMX track (top), 2004 Athens Galatsi Hall]

The 2012 Olympics ended nine days ago and London is working to piece itself back together. A huge public event like the Olympics has many design decision, and thus, many design discussions. Everything from the look of the medals, the origin of the uniforms, the logo and mascot, and the buildings themselves were fair game for critique. That lengthy debate and decision making process is partially why Dutch architecture, research and urbanism studio XML wrote in a study for the Dutch government that in the future democratic nations will find it difficult to host the Games.

[Still in use: 1940's canceled Helsinki tennis court turned mall (top), LA's 1932 and 1984 arena was borrowed from USC]

Great Britain is a democratic country, and overall, did an excellent job. Some design decisions were lacking, such as this shooting area that reminds me of a Target retail store, but London seems to have survived without major issues or threat of bankruptcy. Most importantly for an Olympic host, they have a post-Games gameplan. Many countries have struggled to use the large buildings built for the variety of sporting events as well as the Olympic Village. National Geographic profiled the successes and failures of several hosts, seen in the images here. The London Games were built in East London, with the goal of revitalizing a depressed area in a city that struggles to provide affordable housing. Dezeen has more details on the neighborhoods, public parks, health centers and schools built largely with private funding.

 Daniel Moylan, Chairman of the London Legacy Development Corporation said: “Central London is moving east. Bringing the Games to east London has accelerated investment in an already growing area and now the world’s attention is focused on this fantastic part of the city."

There are two parts to success post-Olympics. London had the first- intent. Purposeful design has given the city a leg up in repurposing the buildings and revitalizing East London. Only time will tell if they have the second- follow through.

Images: National Geographic.

Monday, August 13, 2012

tumblights 8/13

I was a busy bee this weekend and didn't get a chance to post Sunday tumblights, but the colorful finds of this week are too good not to share, even if a day late. Bright rainbows and perfect summer colors help me when the Bay Area gets a bit of a fall chill to the air, like tonight. Luckily, frequent guests has translated into several day trips (and a weekend!) up in Napa and Sonoma so summer weather is just a short drive away.

Clockwise from top left

Enjoy these? Find more daily at percentblog.tumblr.com. And even more stunning images on my pintrest.