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Architecture of Surveillance: NSA Spy Outpost in Brutalist NYC Building

[ By WebUrbanist in Architecture & Offices & Commercial. ] Like some ancient megalith, an imposing windowless structure in Manhattan may be even more sinister than it appears.

Transformers: 2 Beijing Houses Packed Full of Space-Maximizing Tricks

[ By SA Rogers in Architecture & Houses & Residential. ] Think you’ve seen it all when it comes to ideas for saving space in small houses and apartments?

Urban Adventuring Apps: 13 Interactive Ways to Explore Your City

[ By SA Rogers in Travel & Urban Exploration. ] Whether you want to get to know your own city on a deeper level or explore secret spots in unfamiliar places, this collection of smartphone apps will take you on adventures you’d otherwise miss.

US Megaregions: Algorithm Redefines Boundaries of Metropolitan Areas

[ By WebUrbanist in Culture & History & Travel. ] A new geographical study of the United States reveals the functional boundaries of megapolises around the country, defining them by usage rather than arbitrary political borders.

The ‘90s Are Calling: How to Hack a Payphone into a Boombox

[ By SA Rogers in Gadgets & Geekery & Technology. ] When you pick up this bright yellow receiver, you won’t hear a dial tone on the other end – what’s waiting for you instead is some of the worst music the 1990s had to offer.

Evil Architecture: 15 Ominous-Looking Buildings Fit for Scheming Villains

[ By SA Rogers in Architecture & Cities & Urbanism. ] With ominous red lighting, creepy statue adornments, ventilation pipes resembling cannons and spaceship-like silhouettes, these buildings put off some seriously evil vibes.

Capping Chernobyl: Nuclear Disaster Site Covered in Giant Protective Dome

[ By WebUrbanist in Abandoned Places & Architecture. ] In an unprecedented feat of engineering, the world’s most infamous nuclear disaster site is being covered by a huge prefabricated steel arch designed to shield the world from its fallout. Made to fit over the so-called sarcophagus, a crumbling concrete and lead shelter initially erected at the site, the New Safe Confinement structure spans nearly 1,000 feet horizontally.

Santa Claustrophobia: The World’s Creepiest Santa Statues

[ By Steve in Culture & History & Travel. ] The ho-ho-horror! Much like creepy clowns, these dark and disturbing Santa Claus statues cross the fine line separating awe-inspiring and just plain awful.

Sprawl Trilogy Redesign: New Dystopian Covers for Classic Gibson Novels

[ By WebUrbanist in Art & Drawing & Digital. ] Three classic cyberbunk books and a short story collection, all by William Gibson, are getting an apt makeover in the form of architectural covers featuring beautifully abstracted urban landscapes.

Hippie Bus for the 21st Century: DIY Solar Volkswagen Camper Van

[ By SA Rogers in Technology & Vehicles & Mods. ] Iconic for its role in the counterculture movement of the 1960s, the Volkswagen Bus has seen many an amateur transformation into campers over the decades since, and now it’s gone solar electric.

Drawing Sculptures: 3D Architectural Art Styled After 2D Sketches

[ By WebUrbanist in Art & Sculpture & Craft. ] This ongoing series of sculptural floating cities and suspended towns could be mistaken for pencil drawings when glanced on a wall or seen in a two-dimensional medium like photography.

Bike on the River: Cycle-Powered Gym Boat Glides Through Paris

[ By SA Rogers in Conceptual & Futuristic & Technology. ] Well, here’s one way to get some exercise and simultaneously enjoy views of a beautiful city without getting rained on or dealing with traffic.  Gliding along the surface of the Seine in Paris, past such landmarks as the Notre Dame Cathedral, ‘The Paris Navigating Gym’ gets most of its power from the humans operating the stationary bicycles inside.

Occupy Urban Spaces: 10 Guerrilla Modifications to City Infrastructure

[ By SA Rogers in Architecture & Cities & Urbanism. ] Nobody knows the needs of a city better than the residents who navigate it each day, so who better to edit, adapt and upgrade urban spaces to make them cooler and more useful?

Hidden Addition: Stealth NYC Penthouse is Invisible from Streets Below

[ By WebUrbanist in Architecture & Houses & Residential. ] Unseen above the restored cast-iron facade of this 1857 residential structure in Tribeca, a stunning modern loft extends the building’s livable space, its form responding directly to lines of sight.

Fantasy is Now Reality: Twisting Tree-Covered Callebaut Tower Taking Shape

[ By SA Rogers in Architecture & Cities & Urbanism. ] We’ve seen lots of dazzling concepts by Belgian architect Vincent Callebaut, most of which seem far too fanciful to ever actually materialize, but his twisting high-rise tower in Taipei is finally taking shape in three dimensions.

How to Be Invisible: 15 Anti-Surveillance Designs & Installations

[ By SA Rogers in Gadgets & Geekery & Technology. ] We don’t have to wait for a dystopian future in which our faces are scanned as we walk down the sidewalk and our every movement is logged – we willingly carry personally identifiable tracking devices in our pockets everywhere we go, and cameras are everywhere.

Cantilevered Cabin: Dizzying Alpine Shelter Hangs Off the Edge of a Cliff

[ By WebUrbanist in Boutique & Art Hotels & Travel. ] Even someone brave enough to overcome fears of heights and climb a mountain may not have the stomach to spend the night in this suspended shelter on the edge of a vertigo-inducing abyss.

Kid Stuffed: 10 More Eerie Abandoned Orphanages

[ By Steve in Abandoned Places & Architecture. ] Little orphans any? Not so much these days thanks to fostering and improved economies, the result being many former orphanages have been left eerily abandoned.

Cut Grass: Sutured Landscape Installation Stitches Open Lawn Back Together

[ By WebUrbanist in Art & Installation & Sound. ] Ground Operation is a conceptually simple earthwork: an incision made in a grassy landscape is pealed back then stitched back together, much like an open wound after an injury or surgery.

The Red Line: Moody Neon Light Installations in Remote Places

[ By SA Rogers in Art & Installation & Sound. ] Red neon lights arranged in geometric shapes or casting eerie illumination onto darkened trees almost seem like a natural phenomenon in the vein of the aurora borealis, captured by photographers who manage to be in the right place at the right time.