Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Fate of IBM Building in the News

The fate of a Honolulu icon, the IBM Building, designed by Vladimir Ossipoff, was discussed in the local media with opposing spins. Honolulu Star-Advertiser reporter, Andrew Gomes reported on February 1, 2013 that the Howard Hughes Corporation, IBM's owner, and developer of the ambitious redevelopment plan of Ward Villages, will "...get a $20 million makeover, though the name and general look of the 51-year-old building in Kakaako will remain the same." On the other hand, Curt Sanburn's story in the Honolulu Weekly (Feb. 20, 2013) is more skeptical. Sanburn's story reveals   concerns about the renovation design as expressed by a group of local architects. Good start by Hughes to save IBM, but why not truly PRESERVE it - with 21st century building envelope and systems upgrades - as a historical landmark, collect the deserved tax incentives, and kudos from citizens  who appreciate its distinct architectural form as crafted by its original architect? Like it or not, one can argue that this building is an urban memento to Hawaii's heady Camelot days; similar to what the Aloha Tower is to the steamship era of the 1920s-30s. DSA thanks Andrew and Curt for their reporting on this critical issue. Mariko Reed photo above.

See Gomes' Star-Advertiser story and images of the planned renovations at:

See Sanburn's Honolulu Weekly story at:

Thursday, February 14, 2013

HURRIPLAN Presented at Pratt Institute-Manhattan Campus

HURRIPLAN: Resilient Building Design for Coastal Communities is a two-day training course for planners, design professionals, state and local officials, and property owners. Developed by Dean Sakamoto with graduate assistants Nathalie Razo and Michael Hill, and a team of national experts which include, Don Watson, FAIA; Tom Smith, AIA; Dennis Hwang, J.D.; Gary Chock, P.E.; John Whalen, FAICP; Tom Schroeder, Ph.D. and Ty Dempsey, P.E. At Pratt, the instructional team of Sakamoto, Watson, Hwang, and Don Shaw, AIA, presented HURRIPLAN to a multidisciplinary audience of 30 practitioners, local officials and academics.
For more info on HURRIPLAN, see:

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Post-Sandy Recovery Event at New York Center for Architecture

At a packed Tafel Auditorium, Dean Sakamoto was one of six speakers and panelists at AIA New York's Design For Risk and Recovery (DFRR) committee's Post-Sandy Recovery event on February 13, 2013. Sakamoto shared an overview of the Hurricane Sandy field report with Dennis Hwang and impressed upon the need for architects to design with resilience in mind. Other distinguished speaker included: Ron Shiffman, Thaddeus Pawlowski, Erica Kerberle, Anthony Romeo,AIA and Denisha Williams, RLA, LEED AP, event organizer and moderator. Lance Jay Brown, FAIA and Illya Azaroff, AIA are DFRR co-chairs.
For more info on the DFRR committee, see: