Tag Archives: california

R3: The Noisiest Little House in California



In property, it is said, location is everything. This was put to the test in San Diego when architect Lloyd Russell and his artist wife Ame Parsley managed to buy a vacant block in San Diego’s Little Italy neighbourhood for a bargain $50,000 – not surprising considering the property is an oddly shaped wedge of land sitting between the i-5 freeway and the busiest single-runway airport in the USA, San Diego International Airport (with 600 departures and arrivals per day).

This site couldn’t be noisier – check out the Google Earth satellite photo below for proof – there is even an aeroplane on approach passing almost directly overhead (see if you can pick the site, the triangular building just north of the jumbo)

Never one to shy away from a challenge, Russell set to work designing his new home – the R3 building, a triangular gallery-cum-residence complete with triple glazing, commercial air filtration system, and walls that are stuccoed to help bounce sound waves back onto the freeway.  There is also a killer integrated sound system in case any pesky noise still sneak through.

In designing R3, Lloyd Russell has proven that the most exciting architecture is often, if not always borne from the most difficult challenges.







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Posted by on July 28, 2009 in architecture, building


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Brad Moore Photography


Brad Moore takes wonderful photos of urban wastelands and isolation.  The images were taken around Southern California – the real SoCal, not the glamorised version that the state likes to portray.

Thanks to wrongdistance for the link.








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Posted by on July 26, 2009 in looking, photography


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Tragic Obituary of Donald Appleyard


Obituaries don’t normally feature on Culturepublic, but this one is kind of relevant because Donald Appleyard was a well-known and influential urbanist.  Besides, the irony just screams to be published.  Here goes:

Donald Appleyard (1928–1982) was a Professor of Urban Design at the University of California, Berkeley. In his book Livable Streets, he showed that streets have many social and recreational functions which are severely impaired by fast car traffic. For example, residents of streets with light traffic had, on average, three more friends and twice as many acquaintances as the people on streets with heavy traffic. His work provides a quantitative rationale for traffic calming and living streets.

Appleyard was killed by a speeding automobile.

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Posted by on July 11, 2009 in thinking, urban design


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Laughing: Family Fun

Every time I pass the Sydney Monorail I think what a stupid structure it is. Especially when it’s raining and it splashes greasy water onto my white shirt.

Apparently not everyone shares my disdain for the single track. The Pedersens from Niles, California have set up a monorail system in their own backyard complete with a station named Kitchen View.

Now when I was a kid, we used our backyard to play with the dog, shoot some hoops, or maybe set up a BMX track. And don’t get me wrong – I truly believe the guy who said, “the family that plays together, stays together”. But a grown woman riding a miniature monorail in the backyard (wearing that dress) is something that definitely should be kept in the privacy of one’s own home.

Here “mommy” takes a spin:

In this pic, Jr. takes a ride while daddy soaks in the spa. As Mr Pedersen says himself, “this picture just screams ‘only in America’, doesn’t it?” Indeed…


Posted by on January 13, 2009 in laughing


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