From MTA To MTR æ
Isabella Steger, for The Wall Street Journal:
Mr. Walder, more used to cutting than splashing out, announced that the company would spend more than HK$1 billion to improve services—in a city already widely acknowledged as having one of the best public-transport systems in the world.
Somehow I doubt Mr. Walder even had a couple of million dollars to spend back in NYC.
Wednesday, 28 March 2012
Cities must be cool, creative and in control æ
Michael Bloomberg, for the Financial Times:
A recent study commissioned by Citigroup and conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit found New York City to be the most competitive city in the world, edging out London for the top spot, followed by Singapore, Paris and Hong Kong.
Well worth a read, especially this point:
I have long believed that talent attracts capital far more effectively and consistently than capital attracts talent. The most creative individuals want to live in places that protect personal freedoms, prize diversity and offer an abundance of cultural opportunities.
Hong Kong leaders take note.
Wednesday, 16 November 2011
A Year in New York æ
Andrew Clancy on Vimeo:
Living in New York I’d grab my Canon 7D, or S95, and shoot footage of what was going on around me. It seemed like a never ending project and you could stay filming life in New York for a long time. But eventually I put my camera down and started to edit. Here’s the end result, it’s a bit rough and ready but that’s life in the Big Apple I guess.
Wednesday, 2 November 2011
Kevin Slavin, an alumnus of Cooper Union on his alma mater:
The former president and current trustees have imperiled the future of the only tuition-free undergraduate degree in the United States, and unless someone has an idea for how to make up $16MM a year, it ends soon, quietly, after 150 years.
No one will ever know the names of the trustees who “invested” over $170MM on a new building that no one wanted. Generating over $10MM in annual interest payments alone on an operating budget that used to be $40MM.
It’s unlikely the school will close, but it’s quite possible that the tuition-free days of the school are almost over. However, The New York Times reports:
Dr. Bharucha emphasized that lower-income students and many middle-income ones would continue to attend free, and that none of the 900 current undergraduates would be charged. He said that if the school decided to charge tuition, it was not clear whether it would set its price comparable to those at other private colleges, $40,000 or more, or adopt a different payment structure.
It seems that Nicolai Ouroussoff was prudent to lead off his 2009 architecture review of the new school building with this:
We’ll have to wait to find out exactly what the end of the Age of Excess means for architecture in New York. Yes, the glut of high-concept luxury towers was wearisome. But some great civic works were also commissioned in that era. And given the hard economic times, they may be the last we see for quite some time.
Lots of beautiful design was carried out for the school by Thom Mayne, Stephen Doyle, and Abbott Miller. It’s unfortunate that their inspiring work will stand as a testament to the school’s poor financial management.
Thursday, 29 September 2011
Just Don’t æ
The New York Times, on rising iPad/iPhone theft on subways:
In a common situation, the thieves strike while a train is at a station platform. When the car doors open, the thieves identify vulnerable targets: people sitting near the doors who are absorbed in their music or electronic reading. Just before the doors close again, the thieves grab the devices and flee into the subway station.
Steve would say: Just don’t hold it that way.
Wednesday, 17 August 2011
Core77 on Apple’s Fifth Avenue store:
We’ve just discovered Apple will be updating their iconic Cube structure at their midtown Manhattan retail location, replacing the current cube of 90 panes with just 15 massive, and I mean massive, pieces of glass (rendering at bottom). The slabs will be roughly 10 feet wide by a whopping 32 feet high, and held together using some sort of secret, proprietary connector that will reportedly be embedded within the glass itself, rather than being comprised of mere external clips.
Friday, 12 August 2011
The New York Times reviews the off-Broadway production of Rent:
The young ensemble members who inhabit the new production of Jonathan Larson’s “Rent,” which opened on Thursday night at New World Stages, never seem to feel truly at home. It is as if they had taken over the show for a couple of months of fun, as they might an older sibling’s house on Fire Island, and are now hesitant to treat it as their own.
/via Alfred Tse
Tuesday, 1 March 2011
Not Put Off æ
I see a lot of iPhones in the subway. I see a lot of Macs in cafes. I’m pretty sure we will see more.1
SCMP reports two upcoming Apple stores in Hong Kong (article titled “Apple not put off store plan by rising rents” [sic]) :
The world’s number-one technology company will open its first 15,000 sq ft Apple Store at IFC Mall, in Central, by the end of this year, people familiar with the plan said. In the third quarter of next year Apple plans to open a 20,000 sq ft store at Hysan Place, which is under construction.
Why would Apple ever be put off by rising rents, however crazy they may be here? Apple Stores gross more than most brands per square foot. It took them a while to come to Hong Kong because they are extremely picky about store locations. And these locations were worth the wait.
But just how big is 20,000 square feet? Apple’s Fifth Avenue location in New York City measures 10,000 square feet. It’s still nothing compared to the biggest store yet.
I’m curious to know the smartphone adoption rate in Hong Kong as well as the market share distribution for smartphones. ↩