Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida, Europe and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura.
Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Fascinating Deutsche Welle TV video of innovative architect Thomas Rau in Amsterdam, and what he's done with the WWF HQ in The Netherlands

I originally came to this short report -in English- on Deutsche Welle TV after reading a story on FC Bayern Munich boss Karl-Heinz Rummenigge's efforts to bring salaries down and keep at least some ticket prices family-friendly, and I'll be posting that story soon.

This video explains why architect Thomas Rau decided to rent (instead of buying) his office interior, why this is, supposedly, better for the environment and financially attractive for manufacturers, though the truth is, he makes the disposition of the furniture the manufacturer's problem, not his, when he tires of it.

Then, Deutsche Welle visits a client that he has worked his magic on -the head office of WWF Netherlands in Zeist- and explains how their building became the first energy neutral building in the land of the Orange.

http://www.archicentral.com/wwf-zeist-the-netherlands-rau-architects-11212/ http://sustainablecities.dk/en/city-projects/cases/zeist-home-to-the-wwfs-innovative-new-dutch-headquarters

"A key maxim he follows is the use of 100% recyclable materials. Rau has committed himself to designing environmentally-responsible architecture."
http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,,5887227,00.html

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=66ZA-kfjBUA



Some day, if I can remember to, I'll write here about my plans circa 1990 to travel and write from Eastern Europe after the Berlin Wall fell.
Among other things, I was going to write about how rural communities were coping with the rapid economic and social changes that lay before them, the effect of decades of pollution on the communities and foreign investment, and the employment prospects of the young people who suddenly had choices their parents never had, and who could now move west and leave their problems -
and families- behind.

Marie Ciganek, who was from the then-Czechoslovakia, was the savvy and friendly woman who was then in charge of Eastern Europe at the D.C. office of the WWF, and she couldn't have been more helpful and encouraging, even suggesting some folks I contact to make my goal a reality. http://www.worldwildlife.org/who/

But despite lots of hard work on my part to make a real go of it, the plan could never be worked out financially, which was very depressing, as I had some very definite plans for doing some very interesting things once I got over there.

It was while going around talking to people in Washington and doing some investigating that I first found out for myself how many of D.C.'s think tanks and foundations that have funds that are supposed to be used to help and encourage Young Professionals in their career efforts, were actually not much more than wink-wink slush funds/vacation jaunts for well-known establishment types already working at mainstream American news media outlets, print and electronic -
and they were NOT so young, either!

I won't name names here but... well, I could.
It was quite an eye-opening experience for me to see how routinely "requirements" were flouted by well-connected media types to secure things they weren't really eligible for!

This was also roughly when I was routinely plowing thru Foreign Affairs magazine in one week, often on MARC train trips up to Baltimore from D.C's Union Station on weekends for Oriole home games at Camden Yards.

Somewhere, in the archives, there are photos of me reading it in-between innings out in the centerfield bleachers, my favorite area for watching a game there. Perhaps even this essay from 1993, The Collapse Of 'The West' by Owen Harries

http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/49202/owen-harries/the-collapse-of-the-west


Those were the days!
Yes kids, once upon a time, not so long ago, the Orioles were very, very good...

When I was at IU in Bloomington, I used to routinely listen to Deutsche Welle's English-language radio broadcasts on my shortwave radio, http://www.dw-world.de/ which was even more interesting when I had a girlfriend at the time who spoke fluent German, one of the languages I never quite cracked.
http://www.dw-world.de/popups/popup_multi_mediaplayer/0,,4128016_type_audio_struct_4703_format_WMedia,00.html

Talar ni tyska, Dave?
Nej!


For more information:
http://wwf.panda.org/who_we_are/wwf_offices/netherlands/

http://rau.eu/en


RAU Architects YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/RAUarchitects

http://www.foreignaffairs.com/

http://www.timothygartonash.com/

http://www.spiegel.de/international/

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Hallandale Beach Blog is where I try to inject or superimpose a degree of accountability, transparency and insight onto Florida and local Broward County government and public policy issues, which I feel is sorely lacking in local media now. On this blog, locally, I concentrate my energy, enthusiasm, anger and laser-like attention on the coastal cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood and Aventura.

If you lived in this part of South Florida, you'd ALREADY be stuck in stultifying traffic, paying higher-than-necessary taxes and continually musing about the chronic lack of accountability among not only elected govt. officials, but also of city, county and state employees as well. Collectively, with a few rare exceptions, they couldn't be farther from the sort of strong results-oriented, eager work-ethic mentality that local residents deserve and expect. But seldom if ever see...

This is particularly true in the Broward County city I live in, the City of Hallandale Beach, north of Aventura and south of Hollywood and right on the Atlantic Ocean. Here, the "Perfect Storm" of years of apathy, incompetency and cronyism are all too readily apparent. Sadly for its beleaguered residents, HB is where even easily-solved, quality-of-life problems are left to fester for YEARS on end, because of myopia, lack of common sense and ineffective supervisory management. It's a city with tremendous potential because of its terrific location and well-educated populace, yet its citizens have almost become numb to HB City Hall's frequent outrages and screw-ups, the result of YEARS of the worst kind of mismanagement and lack of foresight. On a daily basis, residents and Small Business owners wake up and see the same old problems that have never being adequately resolved by the city in a logical and responsible fashion, merely kicked -once again- further down the road for others to solve in the future.

I used to ask myself, not always rhetorically, "Where are all the enterprising young reporters who want to show that through their own hard work and enterprise, what REAL investigative reporting can produce?" Hearing no response, I decided to start a blog of my own that could try to do some of these things, taking the p.o.v. of a reasonable-but-skeptical person seeing the situation for the first time with fresh eyes, and wanting questions answered in a honest and logical way that citizens have the right to expect.

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Some older elements and building blocks formerly seen at Hallandale Beach Blog, such as photos, graphics and videos have been moved into cold storage. Visit them again or see what you've missed at: http://hallandale-beach-blog.blogspot.com/
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