Host Frances Anderton looks at design and architecture from a Los Angeles perspective.
LA architect rebuilds after Woolsey Fire and reflects on living in the wildland-urban interface
23:55Geoffrey von Oeyen completed a dream house for his brother, only to see it destroyed by the Woolsey Fire two years ago. As he nears completion on the rebuild, he reflects on living in the wildland-urban interface. Also, Janna Ireland is on a mission to tell stories about Black people and their creativity. She talks about her new photo book of buildings by the architect Paul Revere Williams.
Roman Mars turns ‘99% Invisible’ city into a 100% visible book
24:05Roman Mars has spent 10 years using his radio show “99% Invisible” to reveal the everyday quirks and delights of cities. Now he’s co-written a book called “The 99% Invisible City: A Field Guide to the Hidden World of Everyday Design.” Mars talks with DnA about tales from LA, writing for print v. radio, and whether he secretly yearns to be a designer.
In an age of loneliness, Treehouse offers community that’s carefully curated and designed
30:56Americans are experiencing an epidemic of loneliness. A coliving project in Hollywood was designed to remedy it. Then came a pandemic. Ten months after its opening, DnA explores the design of Treehouse with creative director Sean Knibb, architect Jeff Soler, and reporter Adriana Cargill. Some residents also share how the project just might be what the doctor ordered at a time of extreme isolation.
Air conditioning becomes a weapon against infection, D.J. Waldie finds the soul in Los Angeles
28:02Ventilation has become a life or death issue as as experts find that COVID-19 infections increase in poorly ventilated interiors. DnA looks into the extreme measures being taken to improve air conditioning and asks whether outside air is cheaper and healthier. D.J. Waldie has a writerly gift for divining the “sacred ordinariness” in the fabric of Los Angeles. In his new book “Becoming Los Angeles: Myth, Memory, and a Sense of Place,” Waldie reckons with himself and the region in a post-George Floyd world, while illuminating details of LA life, from telecopters to the tiles at Union Station.
How Bill English helped create the computer mouse, and the effort to change the face of architecture
28:39California has around 21,000 licensed architects, and 300 of them are Black. SoCalNOMA (National Organization of Minority Architects) hopes to change that through its Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Challenge. SoCalNOMA President Lance Collins also talks about decolonizing architecture education and finding an African American architectural language. Computer engineer William English made the mouse a reality. His son John reflects on his father’s work, how William English felt about Apple’s version of the mouse, and how the mouse got its name.
City of Santa Monica lets restaurants serve in parking lanes, taking on the primacy of the automobile
18:13The restaurants on Santa Monica’s Main Street took a huge hit from the COVID-19 shutdown. So the city government, restaurant owners and nearby residents hatched a plan: get rid of parking and give over the space to diners. In doing so, they created European-style al fresco dining, and took on the primacy of the automobile in Los Angeles. They also presented restaurants with a design challenge: how do you make a patch of asphalt with heavy concrete barriers into an attractive destination?
XPRIZE’s $1 million face mask contest, and the link between urban design and immunity
31:01XPRIZE is offering $1 million to designers of a protective face mask that people will actually want to wear. Also, many buildings and neighborhoods are designed in a way that help cause chronic health conditions like type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Dr. Richard Jackson, pediatrician and city design consultant, talks about why well-lit staircases, green roofs, bike lanes, and pleasant sidewalks matter, especially in the time of coronavirus.
For an art conservator, it's hard to say goodbye to Confederate statues
18:08Statues of slave traders and Confederate leaders are being toppled or defaced during protests following the killing of George Floyd. How does that feel to a conservator who has worked on some of them? Andrew Baxter installs and restores sculptures and monuments, including the statue of Robert E. Lee in Richmond, Virginia. He talks about his craft, the criticism he has received, and his growing “awakening” about whether symbols of racism should go.
How structural racism shaped LA, and what developers can do about it
16:27Redlining, restrictive covenants, urban renewal, and building freeways through communities of color are all ways Los Angeles was shaped by structural racism. Now gentrification is a challenge. Real estate development consultant Judith Taylor explains how race has shaped place, and the work she is doing to bring equity and local investment into new development in South LA.
Google and Twitter tell staff to keep working from home. What will happen to creative offices?
16:15Big tech companies have remade the workplace in recent years with creative offices designed to stimulate disruption. Now Google and Twitter are telling employees they can keep on working at home — indefinitely. What does that mean for the workplace as a hub of ideas and socializing?