Friday, January 20, 2012

"What's up BUB?" -- Architecture on the Lam

Houses are under construction again in my neighborhood. Unfortunately, many of them are nothing but  BUBs -- Big Ugly Boxes. I somewhat expected that the recession might have taught us a few things. That bigger isn't necessarily better. That good architecture can create value. That excess square footage has nothing to do with good architecture. BUBs aren't just in my neighborhood. They get built everywhere, all around the world.
A BUB in England.
I don't like the flippant epithet "MacMansion" applied to every new and large house that gets built. (It is a trite insult that has lost most of its meaning.) However, I have to concede that a lot of new construction begs the moniker. BUBs have no class. They contain boxy rooms encased in boxy shells with a bit of applied or implied decoration. (Slap on a few dormers add a turret and call it architecture.) In reality, architecture has gone AWOL. BUBs have no spirit. No life. The lights may be on, but nobody is home.

Take a deep breath. As the recession nears its end let's resolve to build a little better than we did before.

Photo Credit:  Oxymoron