The Boring Company Faces New Setbacks in Las Vegas, and Other News

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The Boring Company tunnel

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Elon Musk’s ongoing Vegas Loop project is forging ahead, but faces a major new setback.

Last year, Elon Musk began discussions for a network of underground tunnels in which passengers can ride in Tesla “sleds” along the Las Vegas Strip. The Boring Company soon began working on the project, dubbed the “Vegas Loop,” whose first two tunnels, completed in February and May, were slated to open on October 1. That hasn’t happened quite yet—a recent tweet from the Tesla founder predicts the opening will happen within the month. The Boring Company has now submitted special use permit and land use applications to begin work on the expanded network of tunnels, according to an announcement from the Las Vegas Convention Visitors Authority. Despite this, the project faces a new setback: the loop may not be able to move as many passengers as originally promised due to fire regulations, which may cause major financial consequences

Earlier this month, vandals damaged more than 63 artifacts at three museums in Berlin.

Berlin’s Museum Island, a UNESCO World Heritage site, was the target of a recent vandalism spree in which as-of-yet unknown visitors sprayed an oily substance on 63 artifacts at the Alte Nationalgalerie, Neues Museum, and Pergamon. Among the items harmed are Egyptian sarcophagi, stone sculptures, and frames of 19th-century pictures. Thankfully, efforts to rectify the damage have been mostly successful and involved applying compresses to soak up the oil. The attackers have yet to be identified, though speculation has brewed in the media that the attacks might be linked to German QAnon conspiracy theorists.

Trump Plaza in Atlantic City, New Jersey

Demolition is underway on the crumbling Trump Plaza along Atlantic City’s Boardwalk. 

Once a fixture along Atlantic City’s famed Boardwalk, the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino closed for good in 2014. Its two hotel towers, designed by influential Las Vegas mega-resort architect Martin Stern Jr., quickly fell into a state of disrepair. City officials declared the building a public safety hazard in March after it was reported that chunks of its concrete and stucco facade were raining down onto nearby streets. Atlantic City mayor Marty Small, who once called the shuttered complex “the biggest eyesore in town,” ordered it to be demolished over the summer. Demolition work is now underway, and the building is expected to be imploded by February 2021. What will replace the troubled property remains to be seen, but Small announced his intent to work side-by-side with Icahn Enterprises, which owns the complex, to figure out a next chapter for the “center city oceanfront massive property.”

A judge rules that most New York traffic signals violate the Americans with Disabilities Act.

There are roughly 120,000 pedestrian control signals at 13,200 of New York City’s 45,000 intersections. All but 443 (96.6 percent) of those signals communicate crossing information visually, with an image of a mid-stride white stick figure indicating “walk” and an upright orange hand indicating “don’t walk.” A federal judge recently ruled that these signals are inaccessible to the blind, making New York City in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. “The Court finds, on the undisputed facts, that the near-total absence at the City’s signalized intersections of crossing information accessible to blind and low-vision pedestrians denies such persons meaningful access to those intersections,” the decision said.  The court now plans to work with the city and the American Council of the Blind to discuss a remedy. which is great news for the 205,000 blind or low-vision New Yorkers who often resort to costly alternatives to safely get their way around.

Piazza Tre Torri in Milan

Construction wraps up on Daniel Libeskind’s PwC Tower in Milan’s CityLife District.

The last of three towers planned for the Piazza Tre Torri office complex in Milan’s CityLife district, which will house more than 3,000 employees for PricewaterhouseCoopers, has been completed. Designed by Daniel Libeskind, the 34-floor PwC building joins the Fiano della Torre Generali by Zaha Hadid and Torre Allianz by Arata Isozaki with Andrea Maffei, who won an international competition for the project in 2004. Libeskind’s tower was the most difficult one out of the three CityLife towers to execute—its glass facade features a slight curvature that becomes more dramatic in elevation, which was made possible by translating planes at each level with respect to the center of gravity. 

Rolls-Royce reveals the shortlist for its inaugural moving image commission.

Four artists have been shortlisted for Rolls-Royce’s inaugural Moving-Image Dream Commission, a biennial prize that aims to foster creativity in the media of moving-image. Each of the shortlisted artists, including Sondra Perry, Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, Martine Syms, and Zhou Tao, have created a moving-image concept artwork that investigates the narrative of “Dreams.” One artist will be selected to execute their new moving-image work in the spring. Rolls-Royce founded the Dream Commission in partnership with the Serpentine Galleries and Foundation Beyeler to support emerging artists across mediums, and aims for the initiative to offer artists the opportunity to “develop their aesthetics and to be able to delve deeply into an area where they can have an autonomy to make a work which can resonate.”

Pheasant and Cylinder by Dale Chihuly for The Rug Company

Today’s attractive distractions:

A museum dedicated to all types of graffiti and street art opens in Amsterdam.

For the Rug Company, Dale Chihuly tries out soft material with stellar results.

Caterina Moretti creates a series of sculptural furniture using volcanic rock.

Archaeologists uncover mummified sacrificial llamas while excavating in Peru.

All Stories