There are few professionals more hopeful for a bright future this holiday season than architects, who are finally starting to see business conditions improve.
Billings at architecture firms have been depressed for the past four years, another victim of the real-estate and housing downturn. But in recent months, that has started to change. — online.wsj.com
Companies added 146,000 jobs, and the unemployment rate fell to 7.7 percent - the lowest in nearly four years - from 7.9 percent in October. The rate declined mainly because more people stopped looking for work and weren't counted as unemployed. — m.apnews.com
To survive, a city or a region has to make money; it has to export more than it imports, in dollar terms. Cities that decline are on the losing side of this equation. So if you care about cities, which I do, it leads you to think about how they function as economic entities. It leads you to think about economics. I think this is what happened to Jane Jacobs, and why she ended up writing several books about economics after her seminal 1961 book, The Death and Life of Great American Cities. — theatlanticcities.com
Current market conditions for architecture and the near-term outlook for the construction industry in the US is a two-sided story, with forward-looking indicators showing steady improvement but serious concerns arising out of an impending ‘fiscal cliff’. — DesignBuild Source
After declining earlier in 2012, the billings index began to turn higher in June, then accelerated, and has now marked its third straight month above the 50 level, which indicates expanding demand for architects' services.
"It's beginning to look like demand for design services has turned the corner," said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker. — reuters.com
At least six landmark projects - worth hundreds of millions of pounds - have been put on ice or cancelled altogether.
These include the 172m (564ft) 100 Bishopsgate skyscraper, on hold until developers secure enough advance tenants to make it viable.
Also on hold is the so-called Can of Ham, on St Mary's Axe. — bbc.co.uk
Last month, we published the winners of the international ideas competition POST+CAPITALIST CITY, #1Shop. Today we are presenting the two winning projects of the competition's second edition, POST+CAPITALIST CITY, 2#Work, which called for proposals that re-imagine the concept of work, the way we produce, and a city with another system of working culture. — bustler.net
If you are interested in participating in the most current competition cycle of POST+CAPITALIST CITY, #3Live which launched last month, click here for more details. Submissions for #3Live are due by January 15, 2013 (early birds registration: December 1, 2012), and the results will be announced...
Among the specific industry sectors, professional services, healthcare, retail, leisure and hospitality, and construction all added jobs last month. The mining sector lost jobs. And employment in the rest of the economy—including manufacturing, financial services, government, information, and more—treaded water. — builderonline.com
“Why do they come to us? Because of 15 Central Park West,” Mr. Stern, 73, said earlier this month from his office on the West Side of Manhattan. The Chinese “don’t want to go home at night to their three-bedroom shelf on the 44th floor,” he added. “They want to live in a place. That’s what we do: we’re place-makers.” — nytimes.com
“You used to look out that window and somewhere you would see a crane,” [Richard Meier] said a few days ago. “You go around New York City today and you don’t see that many cranes. It is just not happening at this moment.” “Obviously,” he added, “if...
Two winning projects and one special mention have recently been announced in the first competition cycle of POST+CAPITALIST CITY, #1Shop. This international ideas competition called for proposals which re-think the concept of the shop, the way we consume, and a city with alternative shopping systems and shopping culture—from small interventions up to global concepts. — bustler.net
If you are interested in participating in the most current competition cycle of POST+CAPITALIST CITY, #3Live which launched earlier this week, click here for more details. Submissions for #3Live are due by January 15, 2013, and the results will be announced in mid-February on Bustler.
Conditions of scarcity demand new ways of thinking, an expansion of the role of the architect and designer outwards in order to function more broadly and imaginatively as spatial agents. In contrast to the regimes of austerity ... the territory of processes and networks opened up by scarcity is far more conducive to creative intervention. It is here that scarcity — which can seem at first a bleak prospect — can become the inspiration and context for constructive and transformative action. — Places Journal
What is the difference between scarcity and austerity? On Places, Jeremy Till contrasts the political ideology of austerity — imposed reductions of public services and social benefits — with the physical condition of scarcity — the measureable dwindling of finite resources...
The evidence sits in my refrigerator: chevroned tall boys of Saison ale and a meticulous shortbread fruit tart, both crafted by former co-workers and classmates who initially pursued architecture only to search for fulfillment elsewhere. Photographers, typographers, bakers, bikers, and brewers are all disguised on LinkedIn and Facebook as design interns. There’s a renaissance happening among young architects — and it’s not in architecture. — crosscut.com
On the heels of a nearly three-point increase, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) climbed into positive terrain for the first time in five months... The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the August ABI score was 50.2, up from the mark of 48.7 in July. This score reflects an increase in demand for design services. The new projects inquiry index was 57.2, up from mark of 56.3 the previous month. — aia.org
Since the beginning of the recession in early 2008, architecture firms have collectively seen their revenue drop by 40 percent and have had to cut personnel by nearly a third. Despite a national recovery from the recession in 2009, construction activity continued to spiral downward, according to the recently release 2012 AIA Firm Survey — aia.org
Those residents, unable to move back into houses they still have to pay for, have spent nearly a year in legal limbo...
More than 2,000 developments begun during that period have turned into “ghost estates,” ...Others, built under a system that allowed developers to “self-certify” — meaning that they could unilaterally declare, with only minimal government oversight, that their properties complied with building codes — are now falling apart, even while residents live there. — NYTimes
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