Don Friedman

Bare Structure

Another old photo, circa 1989. I wrote here some time ago about why I feel that the architectural design concept of “structural honesty” is, at the very least, misnamed. That said, there is an interesting discussion to be had about the intersection of structure and architectural design: so interesting that someone more knowledgable than me …

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Dumbbells

One of the archetypical New York buildings is the “dumbbell tenement,” which was named after its shape, not its occupants or owners. It’s worth looking at what these buildings are and why the gradual reduction in their numbers is not a bad thing. That’s the corner of 19th Street (left) and Eight Avenue (right), looking …

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Discarded

Sometimes you just don’t need the old doors any more. That’s the side facade of the Joyce Theater. We’ve got three infill areas of brick: The former ordinary door a few feet to the right of where the fancy front-facade veneer ends. The door was a step up from the sidewalk and the granite step …

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Hidden Oddity

That’s the demolition of a small commercial building on the Upper West Side. Nothing remarkable – I stopped and looked only because I used to live in the neighborhood and must have walked by this building a few thousand times in the late 80s and early 90s. I was surprised to see that the roof …

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Mid-Air

Engineers share one trait with large-animal veterinarians: when we want to see our subjects in person, we have to go to them because they can’t come to our offices. “The Building Inspector as Action Hero” in the New York Times discusses two issues: the importance to the safety of NYC of having tall-building facades inspected …

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