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Sunday, December 31, 2017

CENTRAL DE ABASTOS

MARKET IN OAXACA CITY, MEXICO



The enormous main market, nearly 1km west of the Zócalo, is a hive of activity all week.

Saturday the biggest day. 

You can find almost anything here.

And it's easy to get lost among the household goods, artesanías and overwhelming quantities of fruit, vegetables, sugarcane, maize and other produce grown from the coast to the mountaintops.

--Lonely Planet

Saturday, December 30, 2017

MERCADO 20 DE NOVIEMBRE

OAXACA, MEXICO


Looking for cheap street food? 

Look no further. 

Dozens of good, clean comedores (food stalls) fill the entrails of this large market where wait staff will thrust menus to within an inch of your nose as you stroll past.


The biggest treat for carnivores is the hugely popular Pasillo de Carnes Asadas (Grilled Meat Passage) on the east side, where a dozen stands specialize in grilling tasajo (beef) or cecina enchilada (slices of chili-coated pork) over hot coals.

--Lonely Planet

Friday, December 29, 2017

MERCADO BENITO JUAREZ

OAXACA, MEXICO


This daily indoor market, a block south of the Zócalo, peddles a mix of flowers, hats, shoes, cheap clothes and jewelry, baskets, leather belts and bags, fancy knives, mezcal, herbs (medicinal and culinary), spices, meat, cheese, ready-made mole, fruit, vegetables, grasshoppers and almost every other food a Oaxacan could need – a fascinating browse.
--Lonely Planet

Thursday, December 28, 2017

CULINARY CAPITAL OF MEXICO


OAXACA, MEXICO

Mexico boasts some of the best regional cuisine in the western world.

Oaxaca is our favorite of all the wonderful regions.

It's known as the land of seven moles.

Each mole is unique, multilayered and savory.


Wednesday, December 27, 2017

CULTURAL COLOSSUS

OAXACA, MEXICO


A cultural colossus fit to rival anywhere in Latin America for history, gastronomy and colorful manifestations of indigenous culture, Oaxaca is a complex but intensely attractive city whose majestic churches and refined plazas have deservedly earned it a Unesco World Heritage badge.

Lovers of culture come here to indulge in the Mexico of Zapotec and colonial legend. 

Flowing through handsome yet tranquil streets, life pulsates with an unadulterated regional flavor. 

-- Lonely Planet

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

ORNATE CHURCHES

OAXACA IS A CITY IN CENTRAL MEXICO 


It’s known for its colonial buildings, many of which are made from green volcanic stone. 

The central Zócalo square features the Palacio de Gobierno, with colorful murals depicting regional history. 

Alameda de León square faces the ornate facade of the Catedral de Oaxaca.

Monday, December 25, 2017

THANKS SANTA, FOR 155,000 READERS...

...AND A GREAT 2017


Today, we passed 155,000 unique visitors to this blog.

We have made more than 1,700 original posts.

We have shared more than 1,000 original images from all over the world.

Our blog items had a word count above 120,000 -- enough to fill at least two large books.

We are thankful for a great 2017, including:

January -- I learned that PlusUrbia Design would be honored in May with the American Planning Association's  Economic Development Planning Gold Standard for the Wynwood Neighborhood Revitalization District.

February -- We celebrated Valentine's Day with our beautiful Siamese cat Honeybear.

March -- I learned that PlusUrbia Design would be honored in September with the American Planning Association Florida's Award of Merit in Neighborhood Planning for the Hialeah Transit Oriented Development.

April -- I went on a writing assignment to New Orleans and made friends with some jazz musicians.

May -- I observed Ramazan in Istanbul and made friends with legendary Armenian-Turkish photographer Ara Guler.

June -- Heidi Johnson-Wright was one of the very few non licensed architects to make a major presentation at the American Institute of Architects (AIA) National Conference in Orlando.

August -- I drew an assignment to co-author a major feature article on for Planning Magazine on Inclusive Mobility.

September -- We survived Hurricane Irma, only losing a fence along with some other outside damage.

October -- I went on a photo assignment to Oaxaca, Mexico and stayed through Dia de los Muertos.

November -- Heidi Johnson-Wright won the Pen 2 Paper writing contest for Crip Cargo.


December -- PlusUrbia Design moved to its new Coral Way studio office, after years in the Grove produced 10 awards and proclamations in the span of three years and the firm worked on key plans for Little Havana, Coconut Grove, El Portal, 395 and the SMART Plan of Miami-Dade County.


Sunday, December 24, 2017

HAPPY HOLIDAYS...FROM PLUS URBIA DESIGN


WE HAVE MOVED TO THE HISTORIC CORAL WAY CORRIDOR

We're still in the heart of Miami on a main bus line.

Minutes from Brickell, Downtown, Little Havana, Coconut Grove, Coral Gables and the Health District -- we're on the edge of the picturesque Shenandoah neighborhood...where our founders live in a beautifully restored house.

Our Communications Leader and his wife also life in Shenandoah in a nearly century-old Spanish Mission style home lovingly preserved and updated for wheelchair access.


Saturday, December 23, 2017

PLUS URBIA DESIGN

RECOGNIZED BY UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE
FOR AN OUTSTANDING YEAR OF PROJECTS


Miami-based, PlusUrbia Design, comprised almost entirely of U-SOA Alums,” has enjoyed an historic year. 

Juan Mullerat and Megan McLaughlin -- Directors of PlusUrbia Design and U-SoA professor team teaching a studio on resiliency and transportation solutions – have led their Miami-based urban design studio to multiple major awards this year. 

They have also lectured on Resiliency, Transit Oriented Development and Complete Districts while leading several major, context-sensitive master planning efforts.

PlusUrbia Design, an urban and architectural design atelier, features U-SoA graduates Maria Bendfeldt, Manuel de Lemos, Bo Li, Sofia Villanueva, Mullerat and McLaughlin on its design team. 

To read the recent highlights of the Miami-based studio, click on the link:

https://plusurbia.com/u-soa-now/

Thursday, December 21, 2017

GRAND OPERA PERFORMANCE OPEN AIR




Dia de los Muertos weeklong celebration featured a free performance in the cool night air in front of the historic Santo Domingo temple and cultural center.

Oaxaca has some of the best cultural programs in Mexico.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

CATRINA THEATER SPECTACLE


TEATRO BENITO JUAREZ, OAXACA, MEXICO


Catrina at Teatro Benito Juarez:  100 artists together, including the The Young Traditional Folk group of Oaxaca, The Orchester of UABJO, actress Wagive Jimenez Turcatt and Romina Ruiz.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

CATRINA THEATER SPECTACLE

TEATRO BENITO JUAREZ, OAXACA, MEXICO



Catrina at Teatro Benito Juarez: 100 artists together, including the voice of Alexander Robles, the dance theater Metamorphis and Chorus of the City of Oaxaca.

Monday, December 18, 2017

DIA DE LOS MUERTOS

XOXOCOTLAN, MEXICO


There are many other cemeteries to visit in the villages around Oaxaca. 

Different villages celebrate on different nights, and some cemeteries are only open during the day, but may still be worth a visit to see how the graves are decorated.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

DIA DE LOS MUERTOS

XOXOCOTLAN, MEXICO



At Xoxocotlan Panteon Viejo, you will find quiet spaces where family members remember their loved ones. 

There are many photo opportunities here, but try to be discreet, and ask for permission to take photos.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Friday, December 15, 2017

DIA DE LOS MUERTOS

XOXOCOTLAN, MEXICO


The village of Xoxocotlan, commonly called Xoxo (pronounced "ho-ho"), which is now encompassed by the urban sprawl of Oaxaca city, is a good place to visit on the night of October 31st. 

Thursday, December 14, 2017

MITLA ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE

OAXACA STATE, MEXICO


Mitla was still occupied and functioning as the main religious center when the Spanish arrived in the 1520s. 

The high priest, called the Uija-tào, resided at Mitla, and the Spanish likened him to the pope. 

Nobles buried at Mitla were destined to become “cloud people” who would intercede on behalf of the population below.

At that time the urban center covered an area of 1 to 2 square kilometres.

--Wiki

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

MITLA ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE

OAXACA STATE, MEXICO


Mitla itself was inhabited at least since the 100-650 CE and perhaps from as early as 900 BCE.

It began as a fortified village on the outer edge of the valley and later became the main religious center for the area. 

The Mixtecs took control of the area around 1000 CE, although the area remained populated by the Zapotec. 

The city reached its height and largest size between 750 and 1521 with both Zapotec and Mixtec influences in its architecture during that time. 

Mitla is one of the pre-Columbian sites that represent the Mesoamerican belief that death was the most consequential part of life after birth. 

It was built as a gateway between the world of the living and the world of the dead. 

--Wikipedia

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

MITLA ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE

OAXACA STATE, MEXICO


Mitla is one of many well-preserved archeological sites of the Oaxaca Valley, where the dry climate has conserved sites as old as 10,000 years. 

This valley was settled by the Zapotecs who over the centuries developed a hierarchical society governed by kings and nobles.

While the valley was relatively isolated, the Zapotecs did have contacts with other Mesoamerican peoples. 

By the time the Spanish arrived, the Zapotec state had a population of over 500,000, sophisticated construction techniques, two calendar systems and agriculture using irrigation and terraces in the mountains to grow food for a mostly urban population.

--Wikipedia

Monday, December 11, 2017

MITLA ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE

OAXACA STATE, MEXICO



Mitla is the second most important archeological site in the state of Oaxaca, and the most important of the Zapotec culture.

The site is located 44 km from the city of Oaxaca in the upper end of the Tlacolula Valley, one of the three that form the Central Valleys Region of the state.

The archeological site is within the modern municipality of San Pablo Villa de Mitla. 

While Monte Alban was most important as the political center, Mitla was the main religious center. 

The name Mitla is derived from the Nahuatl name Mictlan, which was the place of the dead or underworld. 

What makes Mitla unique among Mesoamerican sites is the elaborate and intricate mosaic fretwork and geometric designs that cover tombs, panels, friezes and even entire walls. 

These mosaics are made with small, finely cut and polished stone pieces which have been fitted together without the use of mortar. No other site in Mexico has this.

--Wiki

Sunday, December 10, 2017

FLAWED LOGIC

FROM A SUPPORTER OF A DEEPLY FLAWED PRESIDENT



I wrote last weekend about my challenging an acquaintance to explain if he regretted voting for Trump.

I usually don't do these kinds of things.

I'm not a "I told you so," scorekeeping, gotcha kinda guy.

But I am watching an insane person and his right wing sycophants destroying good things that took decades to build in the nation I have lived in for more than half a century.

They big ah-ha ammunition my former friend came up with.

That he did us all a big favor because Trump, while a little Twitter rant addicted and not quite a statesman, is not Hillary Clinton.

That's it.

Pure and simple.

She would have been the devil.

And that's all my acquaintance needed to tell me.

Like I would smack my hand upside my head and totally get it.

That's right, it is perfectly logical to prop up Trump's rating by creating a mythological narrative for what the Hillary Clinton presidency would be like.

What a mind meld miracle, I thought.

This puts a whole new light on everything.

Fire the Dolphins coach because he had a cocaine addict right hand man on his coaching staff.

Hell no, if it been the coach behind door #2, the assistant coach would have been a mad sniper picking off people from the top of a college tower....so by this new Trumpian tribal logic, the bad guy is the good guy...simply because a presumed, never to play out in reality, path taken by the runner up would most certainly be much, much worse than the reality being crapped out by Trump today.

Wow, who knew this bit of mind trickery would work out so air tight logically.

In this mode, my former friend, who is Jewish, should build a monument to Hitler.

(are you crazy Steve, I hear you asking?  are you a neo Nazi nutcase?)

Nope, I say.

I'm simply applying the new -- Trump is good for America because Hillary would have been the Devil -- logic to world history.

You see, Hitler and his Nazis that killed and tortured -- Jews, disabled people, gay people, mentally ill people, etc -- did everybody a big favor.

The other potential leader of Nazi Germany, hiding behind door #2, would have slaughtered 60 million.

So by comparison, we should rewrite the history books and crown Hitler the king of humanitarians of the first half of the 20th century.

But why stop there.

If the Trump supporter logic is spot-on, then we need to do a whole lot of re-framing of history, simply because the Hillary of the time....clearly would have been much worse if they grasped the reins of power.

Jerry Sandusky?  Swing open the prison doors and let him run a Boy Scout Troop.  Yeah, he used his power to rape, molest and destroy little boys put in his care....but hey, the runner up "Hillary" coach behind door #2 would have victimized 10 times more boys than Sandusky.

Sandusky, in an exemplary showing of restraint, only robbed the innocence of a dozen or so.   Better build a statue of him on the Penn State campus -- because he saved more than 100 boys from falling prey to that Door #2 predator that he admirably took the place of.

There's more.

John Wayne Gacy.  A monster. The Trump school of faulty logic thinks not.

He strangled his sex torture victims before stowing them under his house.

The evil, "Hillary" hiding behind Door #2 clown-cloaked killer would have buried the boys alive.

See, by comparison, Gacy's damn near a stand up guy.

I mean, when you find out someone's kidnapped, raped, tortured, killed and buried your son.....wouldn't you feel so much better knowing that the bizarro world, Hillary-esque, lying in wait behind door #2 predator didn't get the chance to do terrible things to your boy before burying him alive.

See, Trump supports aren't crazy.

It all makes perfect. Sense.

Just trot out some insane, never will be realized terror scenario of what Evil Hillary (and is she so evil because she's progressive, or because she's a woman.  We all know their role is to take a grab by the P---y, not to perpetuate the old white male indignity of first living under and African American president, then living under a woman in the White House) and Trump looks like the second coming.

Yep, that's it.

I know see the light of day.

In fact, I'm going to catch the next flight to Ohio to thank the insane, cruel, hateful boss that treated my wife like dirt when she was working her tail off in one of her first jobs out of school.

Why, under the prism of this new Trump supporter enlightenment, I now see that the boss was a stand up person.  A true mentor and humanitarian.

I mean, they didn't toss my wife out of her wheelchair.

They didn't toss acid in her eyes.

But surely, the #2 candidate, the monster who they were blocking because they got the job, would have beaten my wife to death and hidden here where I could never find her.

Yep, sure hope that old Bastard is still alive.

Gotta fly up and thank them for being an a-hole, yes, but not nearly as bad as the Hillary that could have wrecked everything, if given the chance.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

MONTE ALBAN

OAXACA, MEXICO




The etymology of Monte Alban's present-day name is unclear.

Tentative suggestions regarding its origin range from a presumed corruption of a native Zapotec name to a colonial-era reference to a Spanish soldier by the name Montalbán or to the Alban Hills of Italy. 

The ancient Zapotec name of the city is not known, as abandonment occurred centuries before the writing of the earliest available sources.

Friday, December 8, 2017

MONTE ALBAN

OAXACA, MEXICO



Besides being one of the earliest cities of Mesoamerica, Monte Albán's importance stems also from its role as the pre-eminent Zapotec socio-political and economic center for close to a thousand years.

Founded around 500 BC, the city had lost its political pre-eminence by the end of the Late Classic (ca. AD 500-750) and soon thereafter was largely abandoned. 

Small-scale reoccupation, opportunistic reutilization of earlier structures and tombs, and ritual visitations marked the archaeological history of the site into the Colonial period.

--Wikipedia

Thursday, December 7, 2017

MONTE ALBAN

OAXACA, MEXICO



The partially excavated civic-ceremonial center of the Monte Albán site is situated atop an artificially-leveled ridge, which with an elevation of about 1,940 meters above sea level rises some 400 meters from the valley floor, in an easily defensible location. 

In addition to the monumental core, the site is characterized by several hundred artificial terraces, and a dozen clusters of mounded architecture covering the entire ridgeline and surrounding flanks. 

The archaeological ruins on the nearby Atzompa and El Gallo hills to the north are traditionally considered to be an integral part of the ancient city as well.

--Wiki

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

MONTE ALBAN

OAXACA, MEXICO



Monte Alban is a large pre-Columbian archaeological site in the Santa Cruz Xoxocotlan municipality in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca.

The site is located on a low mountainous range rising above the plain in the central section of the Valley of Oaxaca.

--Wikipedia

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

MIAMI HIGHRISE EXHIBITION

PLUSURBIA DESIGN IS HAPPY TO BE 
INCLUDED AMONG THE EXHIBITORS


Make time to visit the Miami Highrise Exhibition at MCAD in Downtown Miami, open every work day from 10am to 5pm.

Arquitectonica, Ateliers Jean Nouvel, BIG, Patrick Blanc, Brillhart Architecture, Moshe Cosicher, De la Guardia Victoria Architects & Urbanists, Duany Plater Zyberk, Fons Design and Architecture, Foster+Partners, Herzog & de Meuron, Jaime Correa & Associates, JLH Architect, Khoury Levit Fong, Ruediger Lainer, Monad Studio, NBBJ, OMA, Oppenheim Architecture+Design, Perkins+Will. Plusurbia Design, Raymond Jungles Inc., Renzo Piano Building Workshop, R&R Studios, Shulman+Associates, Sieger Suarez Architects, Skidmore Owings & Merrill, Trelles Cabarrocas Architects, Triptyque Architecture, Zaha Hadid Architects.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Sunday, December 3, 2017

PLEASE STOP THE TRUMP INSANITY


Maybe it was the tax plan aimed at only benefiting the super rich.

Maybe it was reading about GOP plan to stack Federal courts far and wide, so their unconstitutional laws will never be repealed.

Maybe it was the endless manipulation of access to affordable healthcare, starving off the so-called Obamacare.

Maybe it was the indignity of having a POTUS get into name-calling Twitter rants that would be shameful behavior by a petulant 12 year old, not a 70-something supposed leader of the free world.

Something broke the camel's back and I approached an acquaintance -- who once was a free thinker -- who voted for Trump in a fury of repeating silly soundbites and hateful rhetoric.

This person once could be moved by facts and evidence, not bullying and B.S.

So I asked them, what exactly has their (not my) president done to move the Country forward?

They stumbled around, mentioned getting rid of special interests (I guess they no longer have to lobby, since they have their own fox guarding the henhouse vampires directing regulatory agencies and holding cabinet level positions.)

He said government is getting smaller (not sure how that adds up, with more than a trillion in deficit being racked up, just so folks worth hundreds of millions can pay tiny tax bills like they were $50K gross income households).

I finally said, you know you made a mistake. I should be putting you on the spot, but can you just say this guy is a disaster.

Well, backed into a corner, my friend had renewed confidence. Old KKK-loving #45 might not be setting the world on fire, but he's better than her.

Oh, so Trump is our savior because Clinton would have been much, much worse.  Oh, I get it now.

I get it that some kind of Tribal loyalty rules over any sense of reason, logic, truth, facts, etc.

More on this Hillary would have been worse flawed logic next Sunday.


Saturday, December 2, 2017

Friday, December 1, 2017