Wednesday, October 11, 2006

ground control to mayor john...

the latest debaucle in the resignation of architect Steven Holl from the Denver Justic Center Project resides here [RMN]. according to mr. holl, he tried to reach out and touch the mayor of denver for his patronic blessing, but alas he couldn't get through on the red bat-phone.
"I couldn't get through to the mayor," Holl said from his New York office. "I said the city needs an advocate for public architecture within the city. The mayor didn't have the time to be an advocate."

Design was not the issue, he said. "The design didn't shift. The attitude changed. I don't think the project manager wanted us in the picture. My communications to the mayor were blocked."

but then, when it may have still held on by a thread, it all came down to one phone call that may have hurt the project managers [at the city] and their precious feelings. to save his reputation, and perhaps to show everyone what the city would be missing, a video appeared on holl's website that showed his design for 50% through schematic design. in the video holl vaguley states that the building is "on time & on budget with all the program included", in contrast to the city's claims. the link to the video is here, but beware, it is a HUGE FILE, so go to a long lunch while downloading. if you don't want to wait, then here's some screenshots:

then comes the kicker about a call between holl & the mayor:

The two spoke by phone Sept. 20. Holl said he told the mayor that "unless (he) refreshed his management and got an advocate for public architecture, this design can't go down this path."
Holl believes the remark was overheard on speaker phone by the very managers he was criticizing.
But the mayor said the comment was made before he turned on the speaker phone for the team gathered in his office.
"(Holl) wanted to vent," Hickenlooper said. "I couldn't repeat to them what he had said. I told him I was putting it on speaker. But (Holl) may have repeated it later."
Holl and Hickenlooper spoke a couple of days later, too, Holl said. But by then, it was too late.

it was that damn speaker phone function again wasn't it?! why can't the city get those things fixed?! which button do i push to end this thing again?!!!
Ah! here it is...



1 comment:

FrankLloydWrong said...

I'm a little surprised at the ease with which Mayor John is dismissing this.