The Architecture Billings Index for July, released today by the American Institute of Architects, shows that the market for design and construction services continues its steady and sustained recovery. With a national billings score of 52.7, more than a full point higher than June’s 51.6, demand for architectural services picked up even more steam last month. — architectmagazine.com
When companies go bankrupt, the medicine can be harsh for staff members and the local tax base, yet the effects are temporary. A bankrupt city can’t fire citizens who pay taxes but already receive worse than subsistence services like one-hour police response times.
Large cities don’t disappear or die, they just waste into chronic basket cases, like Camden, New Jersey; Gary, Indiana; and East St. Louis, Illinois. — bloomberg.com
“We’re not willing to back down on this.They can put forward as much pressure as they would like but I’m very committed to this program and I’m very committed to the well-being of our neighborhoods.” - Gayle McLaughlin, Richmond’s mayor — NYT
Peter DaSilva for The New York Times The power of eminent domain has traditionally worked against homeowners, who can be forced to sell their property to make way for a new highway or shopping mall. But now the working-class city of Richmond, Calif., hopes to use the same legal tool to...
Bruce Katz, vice president of the Brookings Institution, says that many American cities show promising signs of renewal. He's written a book with Brookings Fellow Jennifer Bradley called The Metropolitan Revolution: How Cities and Metros Are Fixing Our Broken Politics and Fragile Economy. The book argues that metro areas — or, cities and suburbs together — are powerful economic engines with considerable political influence... — npr.org
It often happens that news events create a new context for existing photo projects, and such is the case with Philip Jarmain’s photos of Detroit in light of the city’s recent filing for bankruptcy. Jarmain’s series American Beauty documents architecture from a pre-Depression era Detroit — a time when the city was on the rise. They now stand in contrast to its current rock-bottom economic straits. — wired.com
The ABI remained positive again in June after the first decline in ten months in April. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the June ABI score was 51.6, down from a mark of 52.9 in May. This score reflects an increase in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 62.6, up sharply from the reading of 59.1 the previous month. — calculatedriskblog.com
Why does the layout of cities matter so much in mobility?
Harvard's Raj Chetty says he and the other authors of the study were struck by the amount of variation in mobility across areas. — marketplace.org
In a letter accompanying Thursday's filing, Michigan's Governor Rick Snyder...said...residents needed a clear exit from the "cycle of ever decreasing services".
"The only way to do those things is to radically restructure the city" — BBC News
Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes hit a significant milestone in June, surging eight points to a reading of 52 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) released today. Any reading over 50 indicates that more builders view sales conditions as good than poor. — nahb.org
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the May ABI score was 52.9, up dramatically from a mark of 48.6 in April. This score reflects an increase in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 59.1, up slightly from the reading of 58.5 the previous month. — calculatedriskblog.com
“Project approval delays are having an adverse effect on the design and construction industry, but again and again we are hearing that it is extremely difficult to obtain financing to move forward on real estate projects,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. “There are other challenges that have prevented a broader recovery that we will examine in the coming months if this negative trajectory continues... we’re hopeful that this is just a short-term dip.” — aia.org
In March, the American Institute of Architects’ Architecture Billings Index marked its eighth consecutive month of growth in the demand for architectural design services. While the national score of 51.9 is down three full points from February’s score of 54.9, the architecture industry is still seeing continued strength nationwide, and across all regions and industry sectors. — architectmagazine.com
Housing starts in March rose to the highest level in five years. If developers keep building at that rate, there’d be one million new houses by the end of the year.
So, what are builders building and what kind of homes do consumers want? The granite countertop of the new kitchen is like the leather interior of a new car -- a standard, special order must-have. — marketplace.org
In February, the American Institute of Architects’ Architecture Billings Index marked its seventh consecutive month of growth in the demand for architectural design services. With a national score of 54.9, up from January’s score of 54.2, the architecture industry is seeing continued strength and a higher rate of growth of billings than it has seen since the bubble burst five years ago. (A score above 50.0 in the index means that demand is increasing.) — architectmagazine.com
While architects and small firms would undoubtedly benefit from the income tax cuts and deduction, the sales tax on services is problematic for the architectural profession. If the tax plan is approved, architects may find themselves at a distinct disadvantage to out of state firms. — aia.org
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