Get to Know Joel Bergman, the Man Behind the Vegas Strip

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We spend so much time around here talking about high-falutin’ architecture and all those snooty architects in their high class turtlenecks designing their fancy buildings that we sometimes forget to take a look around and check out some of the other characters in the business. No longer! Today we turn our attention to a quick Q&A with Joel Bergman, the architect behind some of Las Vegas’ most famous landmarks like the Mirage, Treasure Island, and Caesars Palace. Heck, he was even Steve Wynn‘s in-house guy for almost twenty years. In the quick profile/interview, he talks a bit about his work in designing the strip and a lot about the big financial downturn plaguing now plaguing the city. Here’s a bit:

What do you make of the nonthemed resorts under construction, with their geometric shapes and sleek lines?

We’re the architect for Fontainebleau Las Vegas, which is a slicker form than something we’d normally do. At CityCenter, everything seems to be jammed together and in conflict with neighboring buildings. People come to Las Vegas to be entertained, not educated. They don’t want to look at buildings like they’re museum pieces.