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Smarter Cities

Subterranean Future: Top Architect On Brains And Beauty Of Underground Buildings

France's star architect Dominique Perrault is focusing his attention downward: "We come from the earth and we shouldn't be afraid of it..."

Ewha Womans University's central underground building, Seoul
Ewha Womans University's central underground building, Seoul
Yelmarc Roulet

GENEVA — The brand-new glass door to the office is marked DPA — for Dominique Perrault Architecture. The renowned French architect has hung his shingle in Geneva, specifically on an unattractive street in the industrial outskirts, near the Vernier oil warehouses.

For the designer of France’s National Library building, the start of the academic year has been very Swiss. A mixed-use tower in Fribourg, a new neighborhood around the train station in Lugano-Muralto and a complex development in Zurich.

He is also joining the faculty of the Lausanne Institute of Technology, but not just to be near his various Swiss projects. He is the inaugural appointment to a new chair dedicated to underground architecture. It’s a promising domain in Switzerland, where buildable land is nearly exhausted.

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Geopolitics

Venezuela-Iran: Maduro And The Axios Of Chaos In The Americas

With the complicity of leftist rulers in Venezuela, Bolivia and even Argentina, Iran's sanction-ridden regime is spreading its tentacles in South America, and could even undermine democracies.

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro visiting Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in Tehran, Iran on June 11. Venezuela is one of Iran's closest allies, and both are subject to tough U.S. sanctions.

Julio Borges

-Analysis-

CARACAS —The dangers posed by Venezuela's relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran is something we've warned about before. Though not new, the dangers have changed considerably in recent years.

They began under Venezuela's late leader, Hugo Chávez , when he decided to turn his back on the West and move closer to countries outside our geopolitical sphere. In 2005, Chávez and Iran's then president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, signed collaborative agreements in areas beyond the economy, with goals that included challenging the West and spreading Iran's presence in Latin America.

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