On the Road with Hurricane Sandy

Cosanti Foundation president Jeff Stein was in Boston last week for Hurricane Sandy. This was not his intention, but with roads blocked by trees, electricity out, airports closed, there he was.

[You can see the problem…; photo & text by Jeff Stein]

The idea was to get to Orlando, Florida from Boston in the middle of the storm for a scheduled talk with the Nils Schweizer Fellows there about mid-century modern architecture of both the 20th and 21st century. “We know already you won’t be coming to Florida,” said Orlando architect Jerome Uhran on the last phone call before high winds blew-down the local cell-tower. “Why don’t we try Skype?”

[Sadly, problem solved!; photo & text by Jeff Stein]

Yes, Skype; a really good idea when you have both electricity and an internet connection. After a bit of a search, Jeff turned to Pastor Johnson of Peace Lutheran Church in Wayland, Massachusetts, just outside Boston. The Church was dry, it had electricity, a spare conference room, and wi-fi.  It also had a garden created by Jeff’s wife, landscape designer Emilie Stein, and a congregation with a very positive feeling about the work going on at Arcosanti.

[Peace Lutheran Church, Wayland MA; photo & text by Jeff Stein]

In Orlando, a big screen was set-up, sound system installed, Skype image projected, and the presentation was on. The Schweizer Fellows later auctioned a Soleri bell to help raise funds to preserve a cast concrete screen wall / brise soleil of the Round Building in Orlando, where the event was held.  Jeff is safely back at Arcosanti this week. Our best wishes go to Peace Lutheran Church for hosting his long-distance discussion, and our hearts are with the millions of hurricane victims still needing assistance along America’s East Coast.

[The Round Building, 1963 Orlando Florida; photo & text by Jeff Stein]

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