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John King
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Urban Design Critic, San Francisco Chronicle
Urban Design Critic, San Francisco Chronicle

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Silicon Valley is all about innovation, right? So it claims. But here's something that IS innovative: a large-scale land-use plan in Fremont by Perkins + Will that allows the unexpected to happen, understanding that we don't know what people will want in 10 or 15 years.

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Urban public spaces matter, no matter what their size.

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George Lucas, whose knack for repackaging all manifestations of Star Wars is equalled only by his love of old-fashioned buildings, chooses ultra-contemporary MAD Architects to design his Lucas Museum of Narrative Art in Chicago. What the what?
http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/place/article/Lucas-architect-choice-for-Chicago-light-years-5673214.php

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San Francisco's fear of heights meets a 910-foot-tall, 80 yards wide tower proposal with a design by Lord Norman Foster -- and it fits the zoning for the block across from the even taller Salesforce Tower.

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Kaiser Permanente has a new hospital complex in Oakland that made this architecture critic turn pale and get the shakes. Some readers, though, say I'm nothing more than a cranky quack. Join in the debate, and take the poll!.

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Mondrian -- Flintstone -- View-Master ... and 15 other S.F. houses that would make a Painted Lady blush.

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Architecture's feel-good story of last week was Julia Morgan receiving the Gold Medal of the American Institute of Architects. But it wasn't a fluke -- hard work went into making the case for a master whose best known work dates from before the Great Depression. 

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George Lucas is crating up his "narrative art" and shipping it to Chicago, and who's to blame for his wanderlust? Ed Lee says the Presidio Trust. I beg to differ.

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Donald Trump has met his match in Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin. Don't ask me, ask Jon Stewart -- he turned their "Signfeud" into a five minute "Daily Show" riff. My "Urban Landscapes" blog.

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Almost by definition, convention center buildings turn their back to the surrounding city. The newest phase of Moscone Center -- a vertical makeover of the FIRST phase from the early 1980s -- is working to reverse that trend. My quick critique? Rough patches ahead, but the architects are heading in the right direction.
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