Gehry’s Memorial in More Jeopardy, A New Santiago Calatrava Fight, and More Architecture News

It’s the week before what, for many people, will mean either a full week off, or just a time when all their companies will require them to be is mildly-conscious and sitting at their desks (if that), but surprisingly, there’s still a bunch going on. Let’s dig in.

As is tradition this time of year, critics have begun filing their top lists of best and worsts. Here in Chicago, the Tribune Blair Kamin has filed his worst list, which we enjoyed maybe more than his best. WBEZ‘s Lee Bey, has filed his as well. Meanwhile, over at The Irish Times, the paper reminds us that the connection between architecture and Chicago didn’t end with developer Garrett Kelleher‘s Chicago Spire debacle. Instead, there’s a long tradition of the Irish in the city (also it would help to ignore that incident with Mrs. O’Leary burning down the first Chicago).

Speaking of the Chicago Spire: fresh off the architect of that failed project’s recent unpleasantness with the Denver Airport redesign project, Santiago Calatrava has found himself a part of a new fight. After a board member blasted the architect at a meeting for the State University System of Florida Board of Governors for both the architect’s tendencies to run over budget, as well as for being Spanish (“Why do we need someone from Spain, when we need jobs right here in America?”), concerning a new building project he is working on at USF Polytechnic, Calatrava and his wife and business partner shot back. Thus far, we are still at a stand-still between the opposing sides.

To the far west of Chicago, and even further from Florida, Christopher Hawthorne has also filed his best/worst list for Los Angeles.

And finally, it looks as though Frank Gehry might soon be having to wait on that groundbreaking ceremony next year for his Eisenhower Memorial in Washington DC. The Eisenhower family, who have raised their voices about Gehry’s designs somewhat quietly up to now, have now become more publicly vocal, speaking out directly against what the famous architect has planned for it, despite the two parties apparent personal get togethers and talks since the last concerns were raised.