Urban Tick has a review of a new publication, The Landscape of Contemporary Infrastructure, which catalogs a variety of (mostly high-profile) infrastructural projects designed by architects in the past couple decades. Though I haven’t read the book, the first point of critique that Urban Tick makes is quite astute and demonstrates a common problem in the architectural adoption of infrastructure as an aesthetic mode (regardless of whether it is an accurate critique of the book, though I have no reason to believe it isn’t):
The first [problem] is the conceptualisation of infrastructure in independent ‘objects’. This approach clearly follows the iconic presentation of architectural projects of the OMA or Herzog and de Meuron type… It fits the current, self promoted architectural ‘Zeitgeist’ of iconic, distinct, clean projects. However it misses the opportunity to establish infrastructure as something more than an ‘object’, but rather a collection of ‘objects’ or even better a network.
Or, to extend that line of criticism a bit, it misses that the most exciting and useful thing about infrastructure as an object of architectural design is the capacity of infrastructure to affect the urban system around it; read Urban Tick’s full review here.
[link via @ethel_baraona]