1. Palm Springs Eternal
Bus tours, concerts, and cocktail parties—what’s not to love about Palm Springs Modernism Week? Of course, the centerpiece is a critical mass of modern homes, civic buildings, and commercial spaces designed by Donald Wexler, FAIA; A. Quincy Jones, FAIA; Albert Frey, FAIA; and others. Public tours will be held at some of these locations.
Learn more at modernismweek.com, and get the backstory on the local preservation community from the Palm Springs Modern Committee at psmodcom.org.
2. Urban Bones
Detroit has been in the news a lot lately: “Detroit Meltdown,” “The Motorless City,” and “The Incredible Shrinking City” are just a few of the headlines from recent months. But what do Detroit’s problems really look like? If you don’t live there or haven’t been there in a while, Chilean photographer and documentarian Camilo José Vergara, a sociologist by training and a recipient of the prestigious Berlin Prize in 2010, offers a primer on the subject in “Detroit is No Dry Bones,” an exhibit at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C., through Feb. 18.
Learn more at nbm.org.
3. Grand Centennial
New York’s Grand Central Terminal opened on Feb. 2, 1913, and remains the world’s largest railway station in terms of platform capacity. Designed by two firms—St. Paul, Minn.–based Reed and Stem and New York–based Warren and Wetmore—Grand Central boasts 67 separate sets of tracks across 48 acres and hosts more than 21 million visitors each year. Besides being just a giant train station, however, Grand Central is unique among other urban train terminals of the era because of the scope of its infrastructure; the excavation of Park Avenue (now platformed over the tracks) represents a feat of civil engineering, and Grand Central’s bilevel tracks represent a feat of design planning. Performances, events, and exhibitions celebrating the project’s 100th anniversary are scheduled all month long.
Learn more at grandcentralterminal.com/centennial.
4. Joyeux Anniversaire
AIA Continental Europe, whose members will mark its 19th anniversary this month, is not your typical AIA chapter. Its charter includes 43 countries, from Ireland to Russia to Spain, and all told covers 10 million square miles (or, for metric system fans, 16 million square kilometers). “When we started AIA Europe,” says Thomas Vonier, FAIA, the chapter’s founding president, “we never imagined that it would become the thriving organization it is today—expanding continually on professional, educational, and social fronts, all at once.”
Learn more at aiaeurope.org.
5. Health Nuts
The math is irrefutable: On average, Americans live about a year and a half longer than they did a decade ago, and three years longer than they did two decades ago. It’s no surprise that healthcare facilities are continuing to expand to keep pace. But they’re also expanding their mission, to promote lifelong wellness in addition to critical care. This month, in San Francisco, the 26th International Summit & Exhibition on Health Facility Planning, Design & Construction will address these issues. The event is sponsored in part by the AIA Academy of Architecture for Health.
Learn more at pdcsummit.org.