It doesn’t look much like itself

Nor, as described, does it sound that much like itself. It was almost overlooked as I riffled through the dentist-office copy of the May Metropolitan Home. Nevertheless, Austin’s city hall is number 71 among the 100 design objects highlighted throughout this special annual issue. The sky has been seriously Photoshopped and turquoised up, and the scale of the photo-illustration is a little off in some way. The Predock-designed peculiarity is described as “a totally green building, which produces its own energy.” I like the building as well as the next person, but it’s already too small and the odd canopy over the ceremonial front stairway entry does, as predicted, do unpleasant things to the unwary pedestrian when there’s a heavy downpour. The description of Austin itself is a bit misleading as well: “The environment has the right of way here.” Those browsing the newstand may proceed directly to page 102.

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