There's a creepy transformation taking over our cities, says architecture critic Justin Davidson. From Houston, Texas to Guangzhou, China, shiny towers of concrete and steel covered with glass are cropping up like an invasive species. Rethink your city's anatomy as Davidson explains how the exteriors of building shape the urban experience -- and what we lose when architects stop using the full range of available materials.
Are architects turning their backs on glass skyscrapers?
Ritiche expresses concern about the way glass is often used.
"(Modern) buildings end up looking very much alike -- there's no articulation to the planes," he said in a phone interview. "In a design sense, I think we've got to try and steer away from just having simple glass boxes. "I want to make sure it doesn't become too cookie-cutter. My office is on (New York's) West Side and I'm looking right into Hudson Yards," he said, referring to the site of a $20-billion urban redevelopment project. "In the last few years there have been five or six of these monsters go up, and they all look the same. I just find them a bit overbearing."