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May 2015
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July 2015

When Larry Met Bjarke…

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Bjarke Ingels and Larry Silverstein at 7 WTC

“It’s like in The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy,” said Bjarke Ingels, scrolling through images of gorgeous, multi-masted wooden sailboats on his phone, about to agree with Larry Silverstein who’d just extolled the fjords of Norway.

“Come here,” said Mr. Silverstein, gently interrupting, reaching out his arm, guiding Mr. Ingels away from the reception area and into his office at 7 World Trade Center.

“Can we come?” asked those who remained: a reporter, a photographer and two publicists (one each for Messers. Silverstein and Ingels).

“No,” said Mr. Silverstein. This was to be a private moment for the city’s newest power couple: developer and architect, honeymooning after their engagement was announced.

Last week BIG, the Bjarke Ingels Group, a New York-based design firm birthed in Copenhagen, unveiled its design for a (probably) 80-story, 1,340-foot building at 200 Greenwich Street, the fourth and final skyscraper at the 16-acre World Trade Center site. That’s 2 World Trade Center, the one that was maybe to open in 2016, the one where construction was halted at street level in 2010. The Liberty Bonds and insurance money funding 3 and 4 World Trade Center was not enough for building 2, too. It’s also the one that was originally designed by Lord Norman Foster in 2005.

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Rent Is For Suckers! Restaurateurs are Buying Instead of Renting

28 Seventh Ave South, from an old Elliman listing

When chef Galen Zamarra, his business partner Eric Blinderman and their eight other investors opened Mas (farmhouse) at 39 Downing Street in 2004 they held a 10-year lease with no renewal option. And that was fine.

“Ten years seems like the end of time when you’re 24,” said Mr. Blinderman, referring to the then-age of many of the owners. “But in the course of a business it’s a blink of an eye.”

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Buddhism for Dinner


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Birth: Farm Egg with Beets, Soy Milk, and Spices

What is it about Buddhism that inspires cynicism? Perhaps it’s the challenge of taking seriously an orange-clad, head-shaven drum circle wedged between the farmers market, Lululemon and Whole Foods at Union Square. Perhaps it’s the surrounding maxi-dress-and-fringe-clad Meatless Monday shoppers who galvanize pessimism. Or is it the discomfort of ignorance?

Many of us know Buddhism as a sort of intersection of free time, yoga and vegetables. Well, yoga is arguably Hindu. And vegetarianism is not a mandate for every Buddhist. That’s the most important thing we learned last week, the first of a series of revelations. Another: Those orange robes originally came from saffron and turmeric dyes.

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2,000 Pound Aerial Art Looms Over Boston

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courtesy of Shawmut Design and Construction

Boston-based sculptor Janet Echelman, recipient of the 2014 Smithsonian American Ingenuity Award in Visual Arts, was selected from a pool of 97 artists to create an installation for her hometown. On display from May to October 2015 in the city's Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway park, “As If It Were Already Here” is a 2,000-pound, half-acre-sized aerial sculpture made of hand-sliced rope and more than half a million knots.

And all it took to install was one 190-ton crane, five 60-ton cranes and 50 people at a time for 20 hours.

Read complete storyand see excellent mini slideshow and installation time-lapse video at InteriorDesign.netJanet Echelman's Massive Aerial Art Looms Over Boston