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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Giving Architects Their Due

In November 2014 I visited the just-opened Fulton Center in Lower Manhattan, snapping this photo and wondering why Grimshaw, Arup and James Carpenter weren't included on a plaque near the entrance:
A photo posted by John Hill (@therealarchidose) on

It wasn't long ago that even the least exceptional city building was adorned with the name of the architect, such as this 1973 fire station in Astoria (plaque that includes architect is at bottom-right):
E262 FDNY Firehouse Engine 262, South Astoria, Queens, New York City

So with a $1.4 billion transit center in Lower Manhattan not acknowledging the designers that made it happen, it appears this is the norm in NYC. With that in mind, I was heartened to read this morning that "A new policy prepared by city planners will ensure new buildings over 1,000 square meters include a prominent credit to the architect near the main entrance or on the main facade." Unfortunately, this news applies to Toronto, not New York. Nevertheless, it's a good start – or, I should say, a good return to form – for giving architects credit where it's due. Let's hope the practice trickles down from Canada to these 50 states.

Update 06/23: On the way to work this morning I snapped a photo of the plaque on the Astoria fire station pictured above. Last but not least is the name of the architect:

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