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Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates recently made over the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building Plaza, years after a controversy over a Richard Serra sculpture there launched a vigorous debate over public art. So how does the new plaza compare to the old? "The plaza is inviting, in part, because of its obvious craft. From the benches, for which the marble was handpicked from a Vermont quarry, to the bronze garbage cans, which appear to balance on their rounded bottoms from sheer centrifugal force, the luxury of the hard surfaces complements the garden elements." [Architectural Record]