The HD Awards ceremony moves to Vegas, Momofuku Ko will serve its last meal tomorrow, and the once-celebrated WeWork is expected to file for bankruptcy. All that and more in this week’s Five on Friday.
A public park in Memphis is reimagined
The $61 million facelift of Tom Lee Park in Memphis, Tennessee fills 30 acres along the Mississippi River with active, social, ecological, and architectural spaces. Setting a new standard for waterfront parks, the public park was originally a green field with only a few trees, sitting mostly unused. Working alongside architecture and urban design practice Studio Gang, landscape architecture firm Scape was brought on to help reconfigure the park with “broad open lawns supplanted with native ecological systems, recreational areas, birding sites, and river-inspired circulation paths winding through 1,000 new trees, public art, play areas, and a large shade canopy and event space,” writes Fast Company.
Iwan Baan’s new exhibition celebrates the soul of architecture
World-renowned Dutch photograhper Iwan Baan’s retrospective exhibition, Iwan Baan: Moments in Architecture, at the Vitra Design Museum in Rhein, Germany is a comprehensive overview of the artist’s prolific work. Indeed, the exhibition examines Baan’s ability to “capture the essence of contemporary architecture, along with the urban and social contexts associated with it and the people who inhabit these various spaces,” according to Arch Daily. His work is a celebration of architectural advances, and his distinctive style mixes precision and technique with sensitivity. On view until March 3rd, 2024, there is also a section that highlights Baan’s work with renowned architects including Herzog & de Meuron, Zaha Hadid, Toyo Ito, and more.
David Chang’s Momofuku Ko says goodbye
Chef and restaurateur David Chang is pausing operations at his celebrated debut restaurant, Momofuku Ko. When it opened in New York in 2008, the establishment garnered attention from all corners of the world. The hype for the restaurant and Chang was real. No one had seen the likes of it anywhere, writes The New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells. From the high-level of difficulty involved in the cooking to the impossible-to-get reservations, Momofuku Ko was unlike anything done before. Chang, who was 30 when Ko opened, changed the fine-dining game, eschewing white table cloths for something younger, sleeker, and more affordable. The restaurant lost its way, says Wells, after it relocated to a larger location on East 1st Street in 2014 and when Chang moved to California a few years ago to grow his empire (he’s now a podcast host, TV producer, talk-show host, and more). Ko will serve its last meal on November 4th.
WeWork to file for bankruptcy as early as next week
Coworking giant WeWork is expected to file for bankruptcy as early as next week as losses mount, reports CNN. Shares have plunged 96 percent this year amid ongoing losses and a massive debt pile. The bankruptcy is a reversal from when the company was valued at $47 billion in 2019, but the IPO revealed larger-than-expected losses and conflicts of interest related to the company’s founder, former CEO Adam Neumann. WeWork eventually did go public but with a much smaller valuation at $9 billion. It has since struggled to retain members. In August, the company had doubts that it would be able to remain in business.
The HD Awards hit the Las Vegas Strip
Viva Las Vegas! To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the HD Awards—the industry’s premier competition celebrating the best in hospitality projects and product design—is moving from New York to Las Vegas. Come celebrate with us on April 30th at the Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas during HD Expo + Conference 2024. Last year’s event generated more than 1,000 total entries, and brought together 500-plus industry professionals from leading design, architecture, purchasing firms, and hotel and restaurant brands. Submissions for the 2024 competition open on Friday, November 10th. We can’t wait to see what next year brings!