Architecture Billings Index in January enters 2017 with modest decrease
The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) dipped slightly into negative territory in January, after a very strong showing in December. [...] The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the January ABI score was 49.5, down from a score of 55.6 in the previous month. This score reflects a minor decrease in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 60.0, up from a reading of 57.6 the previous month.
“This small decrease in activity, taking into consideration strong readings in project inquiries and new design contracts, isn’t exactly a cause for concern,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “The fundamentals of a sound nonresidential design and construction market... View full entry
Architecture Billings Index in December ends year with sharp uptick
The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) concluded the year in positive terrain, with the December reading capping off three straight months of growth in design billings. [...] (AIA) reported the December ABI score was 55.9, up sharply from 50.6 in the previous month. This score reflects the largest increase in design services in 2016 (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 57.2, down from a reading of 59.5 the previous month.
“The sharp upturn in design activity as we wind down the year is certainly encouraging. This bodes well for the design and construction sector as we enter the new year”,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “However, December is an atypical month for interpreting trends... View full entry
Zaha Hadid leaves £67 million fortune in her will
[Hadid] bequeathed a lump sum of £500,000 to her business partner Patrik Schumacher. Hadid also left a total of £1.7m to four nieces and nephews, as well as her brother Haytham Hadid, whose share was £500,000 [...] Her will, obtained by the Architects’ Journal, shows that the net value of her estate was £67,249,458. The calculation was filed in the high court dated 14 December 2016 [...] The will shows Hadid is leaving her architecture practice, of which she was the sole owner, in trust.
— The Guardian
More than half of architects work more than 40 hours a week
In the first survey about the state of the American design industry, more than half of the 9,514 respondents reported working more than 40 hours a week, with the average logging in four extra hours over what’s legally required of full-time workers in the US. Of the design industries surveyed, those working in design education, public relations, environmental graphics, and architecture logged the most overtime hours.
This probably doesn't come as a surprise to any practicing architects—working overtime, often well into the night, is common practice in the field. Moreover, this counts logged hours. But, as everyone knows, architects often work extra hours without billing for it, whether motivated by love of a... View full entry
Architecture Billings Index in November reports another slight increase
Coming off a modest increase after two consecutive months of contraction, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) recorded another small increase in demand for design services. [...] AIA reported the November ABI score was 50.6, essentially unchanged from the mark of 50.8 in the previous month. This score reflects a slight increase in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 59.5, up from a reading of 55.4 the previous month.
“Without many details of the policies proposed, it’s still too early to tell the likely impact of the programs of the new administration,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “However, architects will be among the first to see what new construction projects materialize... View full entry
Examining the politics of starchitect megaprojects in Abu Dhabi
Even if Abu Dhabi has almost unique economic and institutional conditions and rests for now as a borderline case of development profiles, it still highlights several common problems in contemporary large-scale development projects and in the use of star architecture in other parts of the world: little care for the context of branded projects, de-politicization of urban development, weak and inconsistent public planning...[and] spectacular architecture [for] global competition and media exposure
An excerpt from the upcoming book “Starchitecture. Scenes, Actors, and Spectacles in Contemporary Cities” by Davide Ponzini and Michele Nastasi examines Abu Dhabi's Saadiyat Island megaproject, and argues how such projects show the little influence that famous architects can have on... View full entry
Airbnb reveals its top 17 trending city neighborhoods for travel
The hottest Airbnb deals are—surprise!—a little bit out of the way.
The home-and-room rental platform has revealed the top 17 neighborhoods whose bookings grew the most this year, based on 140 million arrivals at 3 million homes. Peppered throughout are terms like “off the usual tourist path” or “a tranquil outpost” and “though detached from city proper.” [...]
While smaller than many of Airbnb’s major markets, these neighborhoods could be in for even more growth in 2017.
In a data analysis report unveiled yesterday, Airbnb summarizes what travelers are allegedly looking for this year:"In cities like Miami and Seoul, travelers to this year’s trending neighborhoods can connect with Experience hosts for local access you won’t find in typical tourist guides: In... View full entry
Manila's new "wavy" mixed-use tower opens in the city's booming financial district
Despite recent geopolitical tensions, The Philippines is projected to have one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, and one seeming indicator of that is the increasing number of tall corporate towers — some with, uh, distinctive designs — that are sprouting up throughout Metro... View full entry
Craig Dykers on Snøhetta's innovation lessons
I’ve been privileged to interview Craig Dykers, founding partner in the extraordinary global architecture firm Snøhetta, on several occasions and walked away each time incredibly inspired by the breadth and depth of their creativity and innovation approaches. [...]
Analyzing their innovation process can yield important lessons for companies. Here are some highlights.
The Forbes list of Snøhetta innovation lessons and glimpses into the firm's intercontinental problem-solving process includes flat hierarchies, embrace of contrasts across a variety of sectors, an internal podcast, and celebration of good news, among many others.Other Snøhetta stories on... View full entry
Architecture Billings Index in October improves modestly after two-month contraction
After seeing consecutive months of contracting demand for the first time in four years, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) saw a modest increase demand for design services. [...] (AIA) reported the October ABI score was 50.8, up from the mark of 48.4 in the previous month. This score reflects a slight increase in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 55.4, down sharply from a reading of 59.4 the previous month.
“There was a collective sense of uncertainty throughout the design and construction industry leading up to the presidential election,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “Hopefully we’ll get a sense of what direction we will be headed once we get a clearer read on how... View full entry
Is Your Architectural Firm a Practice or Business?
This post is brought to you by BQE ArchiOffice. In my experience, most firm owners don’t appreciate the significance of being at the helm of a business. At the risk of sounding cliché, they run a “practice” and they operate it as if they’re just… well… practicing. This problem is... View full entry
Architecture Billings Index declines further; reflecting uncertainty over U.S. presidential election
For the first time since the summer of 2012, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) posted consecutive months of a decline in demand for design services. [...] The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the September ABI score was 48.4, down from the mark of 49.7 in the previous month. This score reflects a decrease in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 59.4, down from a reading of 61.8 the previous month.
“This recent backslide should act as a warning signal,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “But this drop-off in demand could be continued hesitancy in the marketplace to move forward on projects until the presidential election is decided. The fact that new work coming... View full entry
Does the size of your firm affect your pay? Intermediate architect edition
Since 2013, Archinect’s Architecture Salary Poll has collected information on job salaries and satisfaction. The data, submitted anonymously, is broken down into metrics such as firm size, location, position, years of experience, education level, etc. The results provide a helpful look at the... View full entry
Quickly Recover from Missing Billable Hours and Miscalculated Project Costs
This post is brought to you by BQE ArchiOffice. Learn how this Brisbane-based architectural firm is enjoying faster cash flow now.AboutBased in West End, Brisbane, Tim Bennetton Architects is a small, private architectural firm with a single director and three employees. They work in an intimate... View full entry
Engineering giant Arup announces imminent layoffs following Brexit vote
Article 50 still hasn’t been triggered, but the fallout from Brexit is already impacting the UK and its economy. And, as many predicted, architecture isn’t immune to its effects. In one of the first major post-referendum announcements pertaining to the discipline, engineering giant Arup has... View full entry