Joel Solkoff’s Column Vol. VI. Number 1
“Civics as an art has to do not with imagining an impossible [utopia] where all is well, but with making the most and best of each and every place, and especially of the city in which we live.”–Patrick Geddes
[See footnote1 Patrick Geddes, who created the discipline known as urban planning, is the guru of Joel ‘s column ]
Shameful scandal in the Big Apple
January 24, 2020, Williamsport PA US
In September, Samuel Holt’s New York City architecture firm unveiled its library in Queens, the Borough in New York City where President Trump grew up. In November, New York’s Center for Independence for the Disabled filed suit against the City of New York filed suit against the City of New York for violating the Americans with Disabilities Act by building a library that patently excludes disabled children and adults from having access to the library’s collection. Especially egregious is the fact that spending for the library was obscenely high costing over $41.5 million.
“Twenty-nine years after the ADA promised open doors and equal opportunities for people with disabilities, we find the doors of a brand new library shut to children and adults with disabilities. This should not be allowed to happen. Queens Borough Public Library and the City of New York must obey the law and make this right,” Susan M. Dooha, Executive Director of plaintiff Center for Independence of the Disabled – New York.
The bottom line is the Center for the Independence for the Disabled will win the lawsuit. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), signed into law in 1990 by a Republican President promises more than it can deliver. This shameful situation—in which New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, elected to office promising to provide and protect housing for the City’s most vulnerable residents, once again disappointed.
Nearly ten years have passed since the Queens library faced a series of delays. Mayor de Blasio spent far too much time failing to do his duty far as the ex officio official to the group planning the library.
In future columns, I will discuss in detail Mayor de Blassio failure to do his job for New York’s most vulnerable citizens. Shame on Mayor de Blasio. Today, we kick off this far reaching Queens library scandal that will have far reaching implications for global architects for the next fifty years.
Today, Joel’s Column focuses my condemnation on the architect Steven Holl because he failed to do his job as an architect. primarily for architects in the architect, engineering, and construction community and edited by architects is casting in this column shame on Steven Holt who personally and as the leader of his firm has acted in a matter which requires that Steve Holl have his license to practice architecture in New York State suspended with cause.
Enter Canadian architects as the whit horse cavalry
Today’s column kicks off a series of columns in the aftermath of a major disability-related scandal in the New York City Borough of Queens, where President Trump grew up. At the heart of the scandal is the New York City architecture firm of Steven Holl.
Following the story of Steven Holl who like me is 72 years old. Unlike me, Holl is in no way sensitive to problems of disabled people. Holl is sensitive to other things. At Columbia University ( my alma matter ), Holl teaches a course in the relationship of art to architecture:
After delays of nearly 10:years Stephen Ho the which unveiled its disabilty unfriendly $41 million library.
The scandal concerns a library at the Hunters Point section of Queens close to the booming community of Long Island City. When the library was completed in September 2019, the fiction collection was not accessible to wheel-chair based adults like me. The children’s reading room could not accommodate disabled children in wheelchairs.
A resident of Long Island City, Tanya Jackson is a plaintiff in a law suit
Global implications of the scandal caused by the global architecture form of Steven Holl
In September 2019, the Manhattan based firm of Steven Holl unveiled its library which had been years (decades) in the making for a whopping $40 plus million.
Good day Kristy: I am a 72 year old grandfather, paraplegic, and survivor of four concerts. I am also the US architecture critic for e-architect UK. These are my past five years of columns. https://www.e-architect.co.uk/columns
I am devoting my column to the horrible indecency of building a $41 million library in Queens which is not accessible to children nor adults. I would like to talk to you for ten minutes by phone to understand how this obscenity took place and about what we in the disability rights community plan to do about it. Joel 570-505-1251
Screen shot by Joel Solkoff showing how the New York City architecture firm of Samuel Holl violated the Americans with Disabilities Act by deliberately designing a library where the fiction collection is not accessible to paraplegics like me
Arcitectural Library, Columbia University New York City, McKim Meade and White, 1920s classic getleman architects. Avery Library is part of Columbia University, move from Wall Street to the Morninside Heart gets campus a few short blacks from the 125th Street Heart of Harlem
As we say goodbye to 2019, a new Roaring Twenties style will dominate whether one or another architect will obtain the next commission.ate New Millenium which is evocative of larger than life architecture of the large number of retirement age seniors who are plaguing the current and future architecture projects you are taking Ye our careers you will
Honor to Patrick Geddes, father of community planning.
I begin this column with a serious appreciation of the contribution Patrick Geddes made to understanding the design of cities. It was Patrick Geddes who planned the city of Tel Aviv.