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A'19 AIA Conference on Architecture: Las Vegas, Nevada

Every year the Conference on Architecture travels to an iconic city for three immersive days of what’s new and now in architecture and design. In 2019, we’re heading to Las Vegas, a city that captivates millions of visitors each year and is home to some of the most exciting and imaginative architecture and experiences in the world.

“If people want it, Las Vegas will deliver it.”

—99% Invisible, episode 302

There’s often a stigma surrounding Las Vegas architecture, but why? This 113-year-old city is a fascinating microcosm of America, and its ever-changing design landscape reflects decades of trends. Las Vegas, argues Stefan Al, an architect, urban designer, UPENN professor, and the author of The Strip: Las Vegas and The Architecture of the American Dream, has become a global pioneer in design.

Decades earlier, Denise Scott Brown, Hon. FAIA, and Robert Venturi, FAIA, had already fallen in love with the place, which led to the publication of the seminal Learning from Las Vegas, a book that continues to be taught in architecture history and theory classes and has influenced generations of architects.

In a 2013 interview with ARCHITECT Magazine, Denise said this about the inspiration for the book: “We are all very cognizant of architect-designed places. And then there’s Las Vegas. Everyone’s flocking there. So I said, why aren’t we looking at it?”

Although Las Vegas has tens of millions of visitors each year, Bloomberg reports that visitors are gambling less and experiencing more. Architecture is responding accordingly—and that’s yet another reason to take a second look. Read More