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    A NEW KIND OF DESIGN FOR NEW YORK APARTMENTS

    Over the past five years, there has been a growth spurt of Manhattan apartment buildings, but most of these are simply large brick boxes, with no sense of adventure. Now, amid these boxes, rises an innovative yet unassuming pair of twins by Richard Meier. Next week New York architect Peter Gaito Jr. will explain how these towers demonstrate that it is possible to build a successful residential tower without using the routine materials, construction methods, and rectilinear forms that define so many of their midtown cousins.

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    A GENERIC HOTEL IN THE UNITED KINGDOM

    In a somewhat unusual approach, British developer Bondcare (Heathrow) Ltd. designed a major hotel/ conference center before finding an owner for the project. Without an operator to provide design criteria, the developer needed plans for the four-star hotel that were both credible and flexible enough to enable any potential hotelier to incorporate its brand specifications. Next week London writer and ArchitectureWeek contributing editor Don Barker will explain how the firm Reardon Smith Architects created a flexible facility before an owner was available to add its own identity.

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    DESIGN AWARDS IN NORTH CAROLINA

    A "timeline" of architecture was celebrated this year as AIA North Carolina announced its 2002 design award winners. One award went to the "Outdoor Classroom" (pictured) in Columbia, North Carolina, designed by Frank Harmon Architect for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Perched on stilts with 12-foot- (3.6-meter-) high screened windows, the room gives visitors to the Scuppernong River a sense of safety as they learn about snakes, insects, and other creatures. The indoor-outdoor laboratory, made of locally cut and milled wood, is open on all sides to allow natural ventilation and has deep eaves to shade the walls. Next week we'll look at some of North Carolina's other award winners.

     
     
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