Road Trip Leuven: Same Problem, Different City

We spend a fair amount of time making sure that the interior floors of bearing-wall buildings are properly fastened to the masonry. The solution used in past centuries in Leuven is pretty straightforward: Those are wrought-iron straps going through the wall and ending in vertical-bar ties. They’re obvious on the stepped-gable building between the second- and …

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Road Trip, Leuven: Architectural Critique

[Click to enlarge.] Some architects have mixed emotions about the use of ornament. The architect of the Leuven Stadhuis, Matheus de Layers, had the strength of his convictions about ornament. As previously mentioned, I’m here for the SAHC conference. It’s gratifying to be in a room with a couple of hundred other structural engineers who work on old …

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The Eye Of The Beholder

I agree with most of this list of the ugliest buildings in New York. Those are some ugly buildings. I’d remove 8 Spruce Street (I think it’s odd but in an appealing way) and I’d add the General Motors Building at 767 Fifth Avenue…but since this list is purely subjective, my list is no better or …

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For The Weekend: Vacationish

The New York Times had a nice write-up on the Dry Tortugas, including Fort Jefferson, an old project of ours. It’s arguably the oddest place I’ve ever worked: an abandoned fort on an island in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, with limited fresh water and communication. But it’s pretty, in itself and in …

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