albera monti fulfills vatican’s failed promise to deliver a chapel for the poor


the chapel responds to the 'lost' purpose of the vatican pavilion at the venice biennale, which was to challenge designers to create chapels that can be built in poor communities around the globe.

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this venice freespace dance pavilion brings biennale visitors and local residents together


located on the venice mainland, the pavilion is open to dance performances and concerts as well as local happenings and hangouts.

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MMEK’s healthcare facility in utrecht stimulates an environment centered on children


the fully integrated interior that MMEK designed for the 'princess máxima center' helps to transform the experience of healthcare for children of all ages.

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Portland Deploys Data-Tracking Traffic Sensors to Save Lives

Portland to deploy 200 "smart" traffic censors in efforts to make streets safer. (Credit: Yuri Zhuck/Flickr)

Portland, Oregon, has unveiled a network of “smartphones for municipalities” that will track cars, pedestrians and bikes on some of Portland’s most dangerous streets in an effort to improve safety, Fortune reports.

The city, in partnership with AT&T, Intel and Current by GE, is deploying 200 traffic sensors on street lights along three “high-crash corridors,” the Oregonian reports. The sensors will give city staff accurate information on the number of cars, bikes and pedestrians using a road, what they are doing and how fast they are going. The city expects to collect data for 18 months, according to the Oregonian.

The sensors will replace the old method of data-gathering, which until now has been laboriously collected by volunteers and intermittent traffic surveys, the Oregonian says.

“Portland is leading the country in this important data effort,” Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler said at a press conference, according to Tech Republic. “We are at the forefront of using advanced technology to make our cities safer for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers, helping people more easily get around, save time and reduce the possibility of crashes. This pilot is a significant step in acquiring and utilizing data to make critical decisions.”

Portland leaders hope that the traffic data will provide information to help achieve the city’s Vision Zero plan, which calls for eliminating traffic fatalities by 2025. As of last week, the Oregonian wrote, 17 people had died on Portland streets so far this year. The three streets selected, 122nd Avenue between Burnside and Duke streets, Southeast Division between 11th and 122nd avenues, and Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard between 11th and 46th avenues, were chosen from a group of 30 that make up 8 percent of the city’s streets but account for half of its traffic fatalities, reports StateScoop.

Dylan Rivera, a spokesman for the city’s transportation department, told the publication that “we’re hopeful we’ll get the kind of information and data that can help our planners and engineers make better decisions that help save lives.”

The sensors will also help the city study how efficiently its street parking is being used.

Privacy concerns about the new devices have been “well-addressed” by the project’s private sector partners, Mayor Wheeler told ZDNet. No video is uploaded anywhere — the sensors use computer-vision software onboard to identify objects, and then pass that data on, Fortune reports. The system is also configured to ignore personally identifying information. That means no facial recognition software or license plate identification, for example. The devices are able to store up to seven days of video onboard.

The $1 million sensor project is part of the city’s Smart City PDX plan. The city council will vote on the Smart City PDX Priorities Framework Thursday. The rest of the plan, says StateScoop, “hits many of the other familiar smart-city beats, including air-quality sensors, open-data platforms and guidelines for autonomous vehicles.”

 

michael jantzen’s distorted series of photos explores reinterpretation of road signs


the images investigate the relationship between information and the meaning of that information through a series of photomontages.

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the world cup: design, technology and innovation through football boots


at the center of the madness at the world cup are the football boots worn by players. over the years, technology and design have punched out new innovative designs that have re-defined the sport giving players modified weapons to play the game.

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D.C. Vote Ends Tipped Wage System, for Now

Tico Restaurant, Washington, D.C. (Credit: Cliff Burns/Flickr)

D.C. voters approved a ballot initiative to end the two-tiered wage system for tipped workers Tuesday.

The Washington Business Journal reports that Initiative 77 passed 55 to 45 percent in the low-turnout primary election. If it is enacted into law (the measure can be amended by the D.C. Council, then must be sent to Congress for review, as with all District laws), tipped workers at restaurants and in other industries must receive the full minimum wage from their employer, rather than being legally allowed to make some of their wages in tips.

Currently, the tipped minimum wage in the District is $3.33, and the non-tipped minimum wage is $12.50, set to rise to $15 by 2020. Tipped workers at restaurants are paid $3.33 an hour by their employer, and if they do not make at least $12.50 an hour after including tips, the employer must make up the difference. After Initiative 77 becomes law, tipped workers will instead see gradual raises in the tipped minimum wage until it reaches $15 by 2025, Vox reports; by 2026, the minimum wage will be the same for all workers.

“Having employers pay their workers is the right thing to do,” Diana Ramirez, director of the Restaurant Opportunities Center (ROC) of D.C., told the Associated Press after the vote. Restaurant Opportunities Center United, based in New York, advocates for workers’ rights and helped get the initiative on the ballot.

But many restaurant workers openly opposed the initiative, saying that the higher costs to restaurant owners might put many of them out of business (and workers out of jobs). They also argued that higher costs passed on to consumers might reduce tipping from diners. According to data on state-by-state tip rates from credit-card processor Square, customers in D.C. are already the second-stingiest tippers in the nation, second only to Hawaii. It was the fear of reduced tips that led restaurant employees in Hawaii to ask the state legislature to reverse a similar referendum that would have ended the tip credit there.

The Restaurant Opportunities Center says those fears are overblown. Seven states have already eliminated the tipped sub-minimum wage, and recent research, Vox says, shows that restaurant workers in those states have benefitted. Tipped workers in states with a tip credit experience poverty at twice the rate of nontipped workers, according to Yannet Lathrop, a policy analyst with the National Employment Law Project, speaking to Vox. ROC and others, such as now-defeated council chair candidate Ed Lazere, say that a big incentive behind the initiative is to support “immigrants and people of color who may not know their rights,” exactly the same demographic who might refrain from speaking up because of fears of retaliation or language-barrier issues.

ROC calls the current system, where employers are required to make up the difference when a worker does not make minimum wage with their base wage plus tips, “largely unenforceable,” reports the Washington City Paper, pointing to a two-year U.S. Department of Labor study in 2012 that looked at nearly 9,000 investigations at full-service restaurants nationwide and found an 84 percent noncompliance rate with wage laws.

In D.C., however, it was hard to find tipped workers who supported the measure, said the City Paper; some even pinned “Save Our Tips” buttons to their uniforms and work clothes in the days before the vote.

For now, no one is exactly sure how things will play out in the District. The majority of the D.C. Council is against the initiative, as is Mayor Muriel Bowser, the Washingtonian reports. The D.C. Council could simply reverse the voters’ decision, and the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington plans to “immediately begin discussions with District elected officials” to do just that, the City Paper reports. What’s clear is that this is not the end of the road for the issue.

 

SGHS’ ghost-like structures at the venice biennale are models of ‘undefined architecture’


inspired by the korea pavilion for the 1970 expo in osaka, 'building states' is a project by hyun seok kang and gunho kim.

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Pretty in pink: Elicyon’s apartment dazzles at Chiltern Place

Luxury interior design studio Elicyon have recently revealed their latest project, a colourful, vibrant show apartment at new luxury development, Chiltern Place.
 

adidas commissions designer to create display case with a brain to track consumers faces


designer behnaz farahi gives the display cabinet a brain that processes data at approximately 30 times a second, reacting according to the customers expression.

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