Archinect - News 2017-08-24T03:15:01-04:00 Architecture Billings Index in July shows continued growth Alexander Walter 2017-08-23T15:42:00-04:00 >2017-08-23T15:42:32-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="511" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>For the sixth consecutive month, architecture firms reported increasing demand for design services as reflected in the July Architecture Billings Index (ABI). [...] score was 51.9, down from a score of 54.2 in the previous month. This score still reflects an 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 58.6 the previous month, while the new design contracts index increased from 53.7 to 56.4.</p></em><br /><br /><p><em>&ldquo;The July figures show the continuation of healthy trends in the construction sector of our economy,&rdquo; said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. &ldquo;In addition to the balanced increases in design billings across all major regions and construction sectors, the strong gains in new project work coming into architecture firms points to future growth in design and construction activity over coming quarters.&rdquo;</em></p> <p>The AIA reports these key ABI stats for the month of July:</p> <ul><li>Regional averages: South (53.8), Midwest (53.8), Northeast (53.6), West (50.9)</li><li>Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (55.8), commercial / industrial (55.4), institutional (52.0), mixed practice (48.4)</li><li>Project inquiries index: 59.5</li><li>Design contracts index: 56.4</li></ul><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><p><em>All graphs represent data from July 2016 - July 2017. Images provided by the American Institute of Architects.</em></p> Melbourne named world’s most liveable city for seventh consecutive year Alexander Walter 2017-08-18T18:38:00-04:00 >2017-08-22T04:40:40-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="432" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Melbourne, Australia has been ranked as the most &ldquo;liveable&rdquo; city in the world for the seventh consecutive year by the Economist Intelligence Unit. The EIU&rsquo;s benchmark annual report titled &ldquo;The Global Liveability Report 2017,&rdquo; ranks 140 cities in order of best living conditions. Melbourne&rsquo;s 97.5 score is down to perfect assessments in health care, education, and infrastructure, as well as hitting over 95 in stability, and culture and environment.</p></em><br /><br /><p>As <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">in previous years</a>, the top 10 list is mostly comprised of major cities in Australia and Canada, while <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Vienna</a> &mdash;&nbsp;once again &mdash;&nbsp;<em>barely</em> misses the first spot by 0.1 percentage points overall. Auckland, Helsinki, and Hamburg manage to claim some coveted spots at the top for their respective countries.&nbsp;</p> <p>The world's top cities for liveability in 2017 are:<br></p> <ol><li>Melbourne, Australia</li><li>Vienna, Austria</li><li>Vancouver, Canada</li><li>Toronto, Canada</li><li>Calgary, Canada</li><li>Adelaide, Australia</li><li>Perth, Australia</li><li>Auckland, New Zealand</li><li>Helsinki, Finland</li><li>Hamburg, Germany</li></ol> Denmark may soon have its own remotely located tall tower in new mixed-use HQ, designed by Dorte Mandrup Justine Testado 2017-08-18T15:31:00-04:00 >2017-08-18T18:42:37-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="390" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Dorte Mandrup Arkitekter</a> was appointed as advisor and architect for the new mixed-use headquarters of fashion company <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Bestseller</a> in Brande, Denmark. Located in the company's hometown of Brande, the project will accommodate retail spaces for up to 30 shops, areas for offices, education, and public events, and even hotel facilities for traveling business guests.<br></p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p><figcaption>Courtesy of Dorte Mandrup Arkitekter.</figcaption></figure><p>But the centerpiece of the mixed-use will be a slender tower that Bestseller says will stand at over 200 meters tall. (Anyone else thinking about Morphosis' proposed <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">381-meter luxury hotel tower</a> in Vals?) More architectural details about the tower are yet to be released. But with Dorte Mandrup's current renderings, the tower will surely stick out in the small railway town of Brande (Population: 7,065 as of 2014). The architects say the building will be Denmark's tallest tower, once built.<br></p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p><figcaption>Courtesy of Dorte Mandrup Arkitekter.</figcaption></figure><p>According to&nbsp;project leader Anders Krogh Vogdrup, the mixed-use pr...</p> Herzog & de Meuron received reduced fee for Tate Modern extension Alexander Walter 2017-08-15T14:37:00-04:00 >2017-08-15T14:41:38-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="812" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Herzog &amp; de Meuron, the Swiss architecture firm behind the ambitious Tate Modern extension, took a reduced fee for work on the building project after costs went &pound;45m over budget.&nbsp; According to documents obtained by the Architect&rsquo;s Journal under the Freedom of Information act, Herzog &amp; de Meuron was asked not to take its full fee for extra work on the 10-storey building, which went from costing &pound;215m in 2012 to &pound;260m in 2015.&nbsp;</p></em><br /><br /><p><em>The Art Newspaper</em> cites the minutes from a 2015 Tate board of trustees meeting: "Conversation at a senior level indicates that [Herzog &amp; de Meuron] will look sympathetically on this position, but that costs have already been incurred to a certain level, which will require some recompense, allowed for in the figures budgeted."&nbsp;</p> <p>As published minutes reveal, some of the construction firms were also being named for unsatisfactory performance, notably window &amp; facade contractors Seele and Loveld.</p> NCARB reveals diversity in the architectural profession has increased Julia Ingalls 2017-08-10T13:30:00-04:00 >2017-08-12T14:41:11-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="508" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>In 2016, 42 percent of new AXP participants and 30 percent of new ARE candidates identified as non-white&mdash;up three percentage points for both groups. However, diversity among newly licensed architects and NCARB Certificate holders remained the same. For comparison, 38 percent of the U.S. population identifies as either non-white or Hispanic, according to 2015 estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.</p></em><br /><br /><p>There are now more women and non-white participants in architecture as of 2016 according to the NCARB, which has just released its 2017 "By the Numbers" report. As NCARB notes in a press release:</p> <p><em>&ldquo;While several groups remain underrepresented within the profession, these trends point to growing diversity among licensure candidates, and eventually, future architects,&rdquo; said NCARB President Kristine A. Harding, NCARB, AIA. &ldquo;In response, NCARB will continue to ensure our programs balance inclusivity with the rigor needed to protect the public.&rdquo;</em></p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure> FXFOWLE proposes attaching 300-foot spire to skyscraper to become Hudson Yards' tallest Julia Ingalls 2017-08-10T12:47:00-04:00 >2017-08-11T20:13:57-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="395" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Hudson Yards has been making headlines in recent months...But immediately to the northwest, another tower that&rsquo;s been in the making for an equally long period of time may have just received a boost to become the tallest of them all. A new rendering of the Moinian Group&rsquo;s 3 Hudson Boulevard has surfaced, showing both an updated design for the building itself, as well as the addition of a 300-foot spire, that would make the supertall the tallest in the neighborhood.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Despite years of vigorous effort in the Hudson Yards, the Related Companies may not have the tallest skyscraper of them all, thanks to FXFOWLE's proposed spire-tastic tower on 3 Hudson Boulevard. Nothing's final as of yet, but as YIMBY notes, "Back in 2012, YIMBY heard speculation that the tower, previously dubbed The Girasole,&nbsp;could rise as tall as 432 Park Avenue. While 1,350 feet isn&rsquo;t quite 1,397 feet, the new height would certainly rival the supertalls of 57th Street, ranking in between 30 Hudson Yards&rsquo; approximately 1,300-foot parapet, and 432 Park Avenue, as the city&rsquo;s fifth tallest building&nbsp;measured by pinnacle."</p> Where the street has no claim: Presidio Terrace in San Francisco bought after no one paid the street's taxes Julia Ingalls 2017-08-10T12:33:00-04:00 >2017-08-11T09:54:12-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="366" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Tina Lam and Michael Cheng snatched up Presidio Terrace &mdash; the block-long, private oval street lined by 35 megamillion-dollar mansions &mdash; for $90,000 and change in a city-run auction stemming from an unpaid tax bill. They outlasted several other bidders. Now they&rsquo;re looking to cash in &mdash; maybe by charging the residents of those mansions to park on their own private street.</p></em><br /><br /><p>When the annual $14 city tax bill for the street on Presidio Terrace went unpaid for a little over thirty years, the frustrated municipality held an auction to recoup its lost monies. A savvy couple who live in the decidedly less swanky South Bay snapped it up and now are causing all of the exclusive residents of the street to pay much closer attention to civic matters. &nbsp;</p> IKEA starts selling home battery storage with its solar panels Alexander Walter 2017-08-03T14:18:00-04:00 >2017-08-03T14:19:39-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="395" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Ikea is now offering solar panels and home batteries to its customers in the UK. The Scandinavian furniture chain is partnering with solar firm Solarcentury for the venture, with prices for solar battery storage starting at &pound;3,000 (about $3,970 USD). The home batteries are designed to work with existing solar panels, or as part of a new combined home solar panel / battery storage system that Ikea is selling.</p></em><br /><br /><p>The Swedish furniture retail giant first starting solar panels in the UK <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">back in 2013</a> to grow on a (then) heavily subsidized green energy market but ceased sales in 2015 when the British government announced its plans of cutting solar subsidies by up to 90%. Just a few months later, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">IKEA</a> returned with a new lineup of home solar panels, this time partnering up with the firm SolarCentury.</p> <p>"An average solar home in the UK will typically consume around 40% of all the solar electricity generated, or even less if they are regularly out during the day," IKEA explains in a new statement. "The remaining 60% of unused solar electricity is sent back to the National Grid, at a loss compared to its value. This means that homeowners currently lose out on making further cost savings. By adding Solar Battery Storage, unused solar electricity can be stored and used at a later time, meaning the amount of solar electricity an average home can use doubles to 80%."</p> <p>With the launch of its&nbsp;Solar Battery S...</p> "Humanitarian emergency": Michael Greenberg looks inside New York City’s housing crisis Alexander Walter 2017-08-01T15:47:00-04:00 >2017-08-01T15:49:19-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="488" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>New York City is in the throes of a humanitarian emergency, a term defined by the Humanitarian Coalition of large international aid organizations as &ldquo;an event or series of events that represents a critical threat to the health, safety, security or wellbeing of a community or other large group of people.&rdquo; New York&rsquo;s is [...] a &ldquo;complex emergency&rdquo;: man-made and shaped by a combination of forces that have led to a large-scale &ldquo;displacement of populations&rdquo; from their homes.</p></em><br /><br /><p>"What makes the crisis especially startling," author Michael Greenberg continues in his latest piece for <em>The New York Review of Books</em>, "is that New York has the most progressive housing laws in the country and a mayor who has made tenants&rsquo; rights and affordable housing a central focus of his administration."</p> Los Angeles to host 2028 Summer Olympics; hopes to cut costs by using existing venues Alexander Walter 2017-08-01T13:40:00-04:00 >2017-08-01T13:45:43-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="432" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>After weeks of negotiations with the International Olympic Committee, Los Angeles officials have reached a deal to host the 2028 Summer Games under terms they hope will generate hundreds of millions in savings and additional revenues. The agreement will bring the Olympics back to Southern California for a third time, after Los Angeles hosted in 1984 and 1932. It also opens the door for the 2024 Games to be held in Paris.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Spiraling costs and notorious budget overruns have discouraged other cities from pushing towards being a host to the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">2024/28 Summer Olympics</a>, but Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti thinks otherwise and hopes to avoid unpredictable spending by reusing existing venues and infrastructure.&nbsp;</p> <p>As the <em>Los Angeles Times</em> reports, "Olympic experts have said that L.A. could be different because its plan relies on existing venues such as Staples Center, Pauley Pavilion and the Coliseum. It avoids spending billions to construct new stadiums and arenas. Further savings would arise from housing athletes and the media at UCLA and USC rather than building expensive villages."</p> <p>LA officials aren't only hoping to cover the cost of the games but actually generate a surplus&nbsp;&mdash; emulating the success of the 1984 Los Angeles Summer Olympics.</p> These are the 300 top revenue-generating architecture firms in the USA Mackenzie Goldberg 2017-07-31T17:38:00-04:00 >2017-08-03T14:30:39-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="487" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>For the 6th consecutive year in a row, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Gensler</a> has topped Architectural Record's list of <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Top 300 firms</a>. Companies are ranked by the total revenue for architectural services performed in 2016&mdash;for companies that offer other services as well, such as planning or engineering, earnings acquired through these offerings are not considered in the rankings. Gensler brought in a total architectural revenue of almost $1.2 billion dollars. To put that number in perspective, the next in line&mdash;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">AECOM</a>&mdash;only brought in $595 million in architectural revenue, though their overall design revenue was $7.4 billion.&nbsp;</p> <p>The top four spots all remained the same with <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Perkins + Will</a> and <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Jacobs</a> taking 3rd and 4th place, respectively. Out of the top 10 firms from last year, eight remained in this tier while IBI Group and Stantec Inc. both inched forward to join this category. Of all the firms, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Corgan</a>&nbsp;experienced the largest climb moving from 22nd place in 2016 to 14th.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Check out the list of Top 25 firms below!</strong></p> <figure><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></figure><p>Wan...</p> A sketchbook you can draw on by hand, upload to the cloud, then erase in your microwave Julia Ingalls 2017-07-27T13:10:00-04:00 >2017-07-27T13:13:50-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="474" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>For designers who love to draw by hand on real paper but want to store those sketches in the cloud, there is now a kind of a refined, tech-savvy etch-o-sketch in the form of the&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Rocketbook Wave Smart Notebook</a> from self-described "notebook innovators"&nbsp;Joe Lemay and Jake Epstein.&nbsp;</p> <p>Using a special pen known as a Pilot FriXon, one can write or draw in the notebook by hand, and then choose a symbol at the bottom of the page that is linked to a particular app in the cloud. The information on the physical sheet is uploaded to the cloud by taking a picture of it with one's phone, but the ink in which it is written turns invisible once it is microwaved, making it unneccessary to own more than one notebook (presuming, of course, that access to the information on the cloud remains unobstructed).&nbsp;<br></p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><p>Mr. Lemay and Mr. Epstein were motivated to attempt to reinvent the notebook partly because they were tired of the stagnancy in the spiral-bound market. The product, which officially dropped on June ...</p> London’s Walkie Talkie Tower, previously titled "UK's worst building of the year", sells for a record $1.7 billion Anastasia Tokmakova 2017-07-27T12:46:00-04:00 >2017-07-27T13:08:02-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="495" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The price, a record for a single U.K. office property, is remarkable given that the building will face ongoing maintenance costs, JPMorgan Chase &amp; Co. analysts including Tim Leckie wrote in a client note. LKK, which sells Chinese herbal medicines, paid a 13 percent premium to book value for the property even as Land Securities&rsquo;s shares trade at a 26 percent discount, he said.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Land Securities Group Plc&nbsp;and Canary Wharf Group Plc agreed to sell the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Rafael Vi&ntilde;oly</a>-designed&nbsp;Walkie Talkie for 1.28 billion pounds ($1.7 billion) to Hong Kong-based LKK Health Products Group,&nbsp;founded in 1992 by the Lee Kum Kee family, whose primary business sells a variety of condiments.</p> <p><em>Asian investors have poured into London&rsquo;s office market in the year since the Brexit vote, capitalizing on the weak pound to buy towers for record-high prices. Hong Kong real estate developer C C Land Holdings&nbsp;<a href="" title="C C Land to Buy London&rsquo;s Cheesegrater Tower for $1.4 Billion" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">paid</a>&nbsp;1.15 billion pounds for the Cheesegrater tower in May.</em></p> What U.S. cities can learn from Vienna's urban housing policy Alexander Walter 2017-07-26T14:39:00-04:00 >2017-07-26T14:46:40-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="432" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>This is a two-part series on housing policy in Vienna and how it could be a model for progressive housing policy in Seattle, where I live, or other American cities struggling with affordable housing. The first part is an overview of financing and subsidies. Part two, coming tomorrow, looks in detail at how zoning and development supports housing affordability.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Mike Eliason,&nbsp;passivhaus designer with&nbsp;Seattle-based&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Patano Studio</a>, penned an insightful two-part commentary for <em>City Observatory</em>, looking at issues of financing, zoning, affordability, sustainability, and quality of life in a side-by-side comparison of <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Vienna</a> and <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Seattle</a>.</p> A website offering vacation rentals for architecture lovers Anastasia Tokmakova 2017-07-26T13:36:00-04:00 >2017-07-26T17:23:58-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="486" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> PlansMatter</a> is a new travel website that offers vacation rentals for design-minded individuals. The accommodations are hand-picked by two architects, Scott Muellner and Connie Lindor, the founders of the website. The site is not just another Airbnb&mdash;listings for each property point to various rental sites, with which the business collaborates.&nbsp;</p> <p>The selection is exciting in its variety. The site features listings for <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Rudolph Schindler</a> 's LA Penthouse, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Olson Kundig</a>'s camping cabins in Washington, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">James Turrell</a> 's House of Light in Niigata, Japan, <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">F. L. Wright</a>'s Kinney House, and many more 'architecturally significant' properties all over the world in which one can stay at a variety of price points.&nbsp;</p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p><figcaption></figcaption></figure><p>Muellner notes,<em> &ldquo;It&rsquo;s great to go to a museum or a public building designed by an architect you admire, but it&rsquo;s a whole different experience to stay a week in that architect&rsquo;s space. It&rsquo;s not just taking a tour; instead of viewing art, it&rsquo;s living with it.&rdquo;</em></p>... Editor's Picks #472 Nam Henderson 2017-07-26T12:32:00-04:00 >2017-07-26T12:43:45-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="383" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">David Capener</a> penned an entry in the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Practice Diaries</a> series. It is in part, a reaction to deadly Grenfell Tower blaze, wherein he argues <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">What we do as architects is not neutral: it is political.</a><br></p> <p><strong>ubu loca</strong> summed up the mood of many I suspect "<em>Thank you David. Architects of conscious must speak up, challenge the status-quo, and take action.</em>"</p> <p>Plus, the latest installment of the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Deans List</a> featured <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Ingalill Wahlroos-Ritter</a>, just one month into <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">her new post as Dean</a> of the School of Architecture at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Woodbury University</a>. Of particular note the emphasis placed on diversity, the school as "<em>an engine for upward mobility</em>", "<em>this idea that as architect-citizens</em>" and "<em>alternative modes of professional engagement</em>"<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">.</a><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a><strong><strong><br></strong></strong></p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><p><strong><br></strong></p> News <p>Diana Budds questioned <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Why Is There So Much Modern Architecture In The NRA&rsquo;s New Ad?</a> <br></p> <p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Donna Sink</a> pointed out "<em>Amanda Kolson Hurley also wrote an excellent article about this: <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></em><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Why Is The Alt-Right So Angry About Architecture?</a>" <strong>Bench</strong> cut straight to the chase "<em>Holy shit. America, y...</em></p> AIA's Consensus Construction Forecast downgrades expectations for 2017 and 2018 Alexander Walter 2017-07-24T15:51:00-04:00 >2017-07-24T15:51:17-04:00 <img src="" width="912" height="523" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Entering 2017, construction forecasters were quite optimistic about the near-term outlook for the industry. [...] However, as of the mid-year 2017 update, the grounds of this euphoria are evaporating. [...] key elements of the Trump administration&rsquo;s legislative agenda have made almost no progress. [...] As a result, the AIA Consensus Construction Forecast panel is predicting slower growth for the construction industry for the remainder of 2017 and through 2018.</p></em><br /><br /><p><em>"The slower estimated growth for 2017 is expected to continue through 2018. Overall spending growth is currently projected by the Consensus Forecast panel at 3.6 percent for next year, down modestly from the 4.9 percent forecast entering this year. Commercial construction is expected to perform closest to prior expectations, with the 4.0 percent expected growth in spending for 2018 down less than 0.5 percentage points from the late-2016 forecast. Industrial construction is now likely to see very modest 1.1 percent growth next year, down from the prior expectations of 3.3 percent, while the institutional outlook has dropped from the 5.8 percent forecast of six months ago to 4.1 percent with the current projections."</em></p> <p>For the full report and an interactive version of the infographic above, head over to <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a>.<br></p> Lyft joins the race in building its own self-driving technology Justine Testado 2017-07-24T14:36:00-04:00 >2017-07-24T14:36:31-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="432" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>[P]erhaps enticed by predictions of a $7 trillion autonomous driving industry, Lyft is saying it wants a build its own technology stack so it can operate its own self-driving cars. To accomplish this, Lyft is opening a new 50,000-square-foot engineering facility in Palo Alto, California, that it&rsquo;s calling the &ldquo;Level 5&rdquo; center in reference to the most advanced level of autonomous driving. Kapoor said the goal is to have &ldquo;hundreds&rdquo; of engineers working out of the facility by the end of 2018.</p></em><br /><br /><p>According to The Verge, Lyft is yet to release more concrete details of their plan, including which components of a self-driving car they will build themselves or how much money they plan to spend. Last month, Lyft announced their partnership with self-driving car startup NuTonomy to launch a test pilot of NuTonomy's cars in Boston later this year.</p> Six tips to make your ARE review a success Sponsor 2017-07-21T12:00:00-04:00 >2017-07-21T13:18:22-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="303" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p><a href=";utm_medium=banner1500x500&amp;utm_campaign=aresponsorpost032917&amp;utm_term=direct&amp;utm_content=leaderboard" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p> <p><strong><em>This post is brought to you by <a href=";utm_medium=banner&amp;utm_campaign=aresponsorpost071817&amp;utm_term=direct" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">PPI</a>.</em></strong></p> <figure><img src=""></figure><p>The NCARB&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">handbook</a> provides an overview as well as several practice problems for each of the ARE 5.0 exam divisions. Using this handbook will begin to aid you in focusing your time in the knowledge areas where you need the most study.</p> <p>Make sure to create a realistic schedule for your study times. Consider going through the<em> </em><a href=";utm_medium=banner&amp;utm_campaign=aresponsorpost071817&amp;utm_term=direct" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><em>ARE 5 Review Manual</em></a>, as well as the NCARB handbook, to get a feeling for the scope of the divisions and how major topics are organized. Based on your review and a realistic evaluation of your strengths and weaknesses it will be easier to plan your studies.</p> <figure><a href=";utm_medium=banner&amp;utm_campaign=aresponsorpost071817&amp;utm_term=direct" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></figure><p>Stop studying new material a day or two before the exam, because studies show that no amount of last minute cramming increases retention of information. Better yet, consider spending the evening before the exam relaxing and be sure to get plenty of sleep. A light review of some of the areas you&rsquo;ve already studied, may be helpful on the morning of the exam.</p> <figure><img src=""></figure><p>Learn concepts firs...</p> Architecture Billings Index in June ends second quarter on "strong note" Alexander Walter 2017-07-19T13:37:00-04:00 >2017-07-19T13:37:36-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="525" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>For the fifth consecutive month, architecture firms recorded increasing demand for design services as reflected in the June Architecture Billings Index (ABI). [...] June ABI score was 54.2, up from a score of 53.0 in the previous month. This score reflects an increase in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 58.6, down from a reading of 62.4 the previous month, while the new design contracts index decreased from 54.8 to 53.7.</p></em><br /><br /><p><em>&ldquo;So far this year, new activity coming into architecture firms has generally exceeded their ability to complete ongoing projects,&rdquo; said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. &ldquo;Now, firms seem to be ramping up enough to manage these growing workloads.&rdquo;</em></p> <p>The AIA reports these key ABI stats for the month of June:</p> <ul><li>Regional averages: South (54.8), West (53.1), Midwest (51.9), Northeast (51.5)</li><li>Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (57.1), mixed practice (53.8), institutional (52.6), commercial / industrial (52.1)</li><li>Project inquiries index: 58.6</li><li>Design contracts index: 53.7</li></ul><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><p><em>All graphs represent data from June 2016 - June 2017. Images provided by the American Institute of Architects.</em><br></p> Ten years after opening, Morphosis' San Francisco Federal Building is not a crowd pleaser Julia Ingalls 2017-07-18T13:02:00-04:00 >2017-07-26T17:38:33-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="435" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Neighbors have complained about the plaza for years, calling it an unsafe blight. The frustration is shared by Maria Ciprazo, the federal architect who oversaw the process that in 1999 awarded the project to Mayne and his Southern California firm, Morphosis.</p></em><br /><br /><p>In this article, the San Francisco Chronicle takes issue with Morphosis' Federal Building, noting that its plaza has not become the cultural hotspot much hyped by developers at its opening in 2007: &nbsp;</p> <p><em>But when we view the complex in hindsight, it didn&rsquo;t transform the local architectural scene. It&rsquo;s a flash of isolated drama. Look no further than the three residential slabs that have been built on the block since then, each a box with no higher aspiration than to satisfy the developer&rsquo;s bottom line.</em></p> <p><em>As for the social agenda &mdash; to create a neighborhood haven &mdash; the plaza and its corner cafe have come up short on all fronts.</em></p> Amazon's patent for "Aquatic Storage Facilities" could turn lakes into underwater warehouses Alexander Walter 2017-07-13T15:53:00-04:00 >2017-07-13T15:54:31-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="403" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>American e-commerce giant Amazon has filed a patent with the US patents office for a system for storing and retrieving goods in an underwater facility. When an item is ordered for delivery, a sonic signal is transmitted from a buoy to the warehouse, which activates an air canister that inflates a balloon, allowing the chosen product to float to the surface where it would be dispatched to the customer.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Just last month, Amazon made headlines when it filed a <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">patent for a drone tower design</a>, essentially a multi-level fulfillment center for unmanned aerial vehicles in densely populated areas.&nbsp;</p> <p>Now a recent Amazon patent for "Aquatic Storage Facilities" has surfaced, allowing us a glimpse into the engineers' quest to overcome limitations in storage capabilities, tackle inefficient use of space in vast fulfillment centers, and eliminate the extremely long distances staff members or robots have to cover when fulfilling orders.&nbsp;</p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p><figcaption>United States Patent Office</figcaption></figure><p>"Because today's online marketplaces offer a wide variety of items to customers [...]," the patent description explains, "fulfillment centers now include increasingly large and complex facilities having expansive capabilities and high-technology accommodations for items, and feature storage areas as large as one million square feet or more. Therefore, in order to prepare and ship an order that includes a large number or different types o...</p> Sir David Adjaye + Sadie Morgan join London Mayor Sadiq Khan's "Good Growth by Design" Julia Ingalls 2017-07-11T12:44:00-04:00 >2017-07-11T12:44:07-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="433" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>London needs to provide space for 46,000 new jobs and build 50,000 new homes a year just to keep up with demand, as well as build the social infrastructure to support both. Good Growth will enable this, leaving a legacy of world-class buildings, outstanding public realm and large-scale regeneration for Londoners of the future.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Exhibiting both farsightedness and excellent aesthetic taste, London Mayor Sadiq Khan has created a program specifically meant to help anticipate and solve London's growth (experts estimate the city will soon have a population of 10 million). The "Good Growth by Design"&nbsp;program will have an advisory panel of 50 design advisors, including Sir David Adjaye and Sadie Morgan.&nbsp;</p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p><figcaption>London. Image: Juan Cabanillas via Flickr</figcaption></figure><p>As the mayor explained in a statement, &ldquo;London is facing unprecedented population growth and with that comes challenging work, but also amazing opportunities to deliver a city that is socially integrated, sustainable, healthier, safer and with a world class public realm. We must embrace London&rsquo;s rapid growth with both hands and take this chance to use good architecture and planning to make a real difference to the lives of Londoners. And this is a chance to learn from past mistakes, some of which are still dotted across our city, and blight the lives of the communities that...</p> Allison Arieff describes Silicon Valley's outdated and dysfunctional planning Anastasia Tokmakova 2017-07-10T14:08:00-04:00 >2017-07-10T15:43:16-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="468" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The built environment of the Valley does not reflect the innovation that&rsquo;s driving the region&rsquo;s stratospheric growth; it looks instead like the 1950s. Looking at aerial views of midcentury campuses like the Eero Saarinen-designed Bell Labs next to contemporary ones like Apple, it&rsquo;s nearly impossible to tell the midcentury structures from the 21st-century ones.</p></em><br /><br /><p>While Silicon Valley is&nbsp;a&nbsp;place&nbsp;of much interest&nbsp;to many, its architectural image and overall planning is hard to grasp or&nbsp;call successful.</p> <p>Allison Arieff of NY Times argues that the isolated corporate headquarters of tech giants have no consideration for the larger context of their surroundings, and heavily contribute to the Bay area's ever-worsening traffic which in combination with the outdated zoning laws, makes the whole region an extremely hard place to live in.&nbsp;<br></p> <p>"In 2011, when asked by a City Council member what benefit the new <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Apple headquarters</a> would have for Cupertino, Steve Jobs responded that it&rsquo;d get to keep the company there. And that&rsquo;s about the extent of what it got. A project like the new Norman Foster-designed Apple Park shows a blatant disregard not only for the citizens of Cupertino but also for the functionality of the region."<br></p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p><figcaption>Apple Headquarters in Cupertino&nbsp;</figcaption></figure><p>"Because of the Bay Area&rsquo;s chronic underinvestment in housing and transit, home prices escalate and cong...</p> China's transit-elevated bus is officially discontinued Julia Ingalls 2017-07-06T13:37:00-04:00 >2017-07-06T14:49:32-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="364" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Many transportation experts were worried about the viability of the project from its earliest stages, including one of the concept creators, Craig Hodgetts. An architecture professor at the University of California in Los Angeles, Hodgetts told Quartz last August that the TEB appeared be an &ldquo;immature project&rdquo; with some &ldquo;fundamental problems.&rdquo; He mentioned, for example, the tight space potentially having a psychological effect on drivers who might respond by braking when driving under the bus.</p></em><br /><br /><p>While no clear reason has been given as to why the trial run of the so-called "car-eating" bus has been shuttered, Chinese officials have confirmed that they are removing the electric tracks on which the TEB was running. The trial run was launched last year in August, around which time hopeful videos, such as the one below, were released to demonstrate the concept:</p> Transform your phone into an augmented-reality ruler with the soon-to-be-released app AR Measure Julia Ingalls 2017-06-29T13:46:00-04:00 >2017-07-01T21:09:17-04:00 <img src="" width="900" height="506900" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p>If you've ever wanted to measure the dimensions of a window that you can't reach physically, it's largely been a trick of algebra. However, the new <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">AR Measure App</a>, as developed by Laan Labs, promises to make it easy to accurately measure physical objects by simply pointing an iOS device at it. In the demo video, the app is able to instantly render the dimensions of a physical object using the existing sensors of an iPhone or iPad.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <figure><figure><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a><figcaption>"Boat." Image: AR Measure</figcaption></figure></figure><p>In a press release, Laan Labs notes that &ldquo;A lot of the credit here goes to the brilliant engineers at Apple. Our app is built on top of the ARKit Framework that was announced at WWDC 2017. That framework allows us to identify points in space using the iPhones sensors and camera input and then measure the distance between those points.&rdquo;</p> <figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p><figcaption>"Stool." Image: AR Measure</figcaption></figure><p>The demos only show the measurement of height or width of relatively flat objects, as opposed to the surface of a curvy or circular item. In practical terms, this makes th...</p> Your ARE license can take you around the world Sponsor 2017-06-29T12:00:00-04:00 >2017-06-29T12:27:46-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="303" border="0" title="" alt="" /><p><a href=";utm_medium=banner1500x500&amp;utm_campaign=aresponsorpost032917&amp;utm_term=direct&amp;utm_content=leaderboard" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p> <p><strong><em>This post is brought to you by <a href=";utm_medium=banner1500x500&amp;utm_campaign=aresponsorpost062717&amp;utm_term=direct&amp;utm_content=leaderboard" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">PPI</a>.</em></strong></p> <p>Congrats! You've <a href=";utm_medium=banner1500x500&amp;utm_campaign=aresponsorpost062717&amp;utm_term=direct&amp;utm_content=leaderboard" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">completed your experience program, passed every division,</a> and received&nbsp;your architecture license. Achieving this career milestone is no easy task. You might be asking yourself just how far your architecture license can take you. If practicing in other states and even other countries interests you, NCARB has programs such as reciprocity and the Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) that can take you beyond your home jurisdiction.</p> <p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Reciprocity</a> is a state-traveling architect's most valuable resource. NCARB instituted reciprocity into the post-license career path as a way to transfer your stamp from one jurisdiction to another. NCARB aims to expedite this process through what&rsquo;s known as a <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">certificate</a>. To become certified, an Architect needs to submit an application that is used to verify education, experience, and licensure. Once certified you will have a direct path to use your license across 54 U.S. jurisdictions and 11 Canadian juri...</p> Home Depot sued for $5 million over "misleading" labeling of 4 x 4s Julia Ingalls 2017-06-27T19:06:00-04:00 >2017-06-29T14:42:43-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="580" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>The alleged deception: The retailers market and sell the hefty lumber as 4x4s without specifying that the boards actually measure 3&frac12; inches by 3&frac12; inches...The retailers say the allegations are bogus. It is common knowledge and longstanding industry practice, they say, that names such as 2x4 or 4x4 do not describe the width and thickness of those pieces of lumber.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Taking literal interpretations to a new, class-action-lawsuit extreme, a group of men are suing Home Depot and Menard's for failing to specifically label their 4 X 4s as being 3.5" X 3.5" (one can only imagine the litigious hurt and fury when these men discover that Aunt Jemima's Syrup is not made by Aunt Jemima). Even the lawyers representing the men admit that 4 X 4 is a trade name that does not literally represent the dimensions of the 4 X 4s, but make this argument instead:&nbsp;</p> <p><em>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s difficult to say that for a reasonable consumer, when they walk into a store and they see a label that says 4x4, that that&rsquo;s simply &mdash; quote unquote &mdash; a trade name,&rdquo; Turin said in an interview.</em></p> <p><em>Turin&nbsp;said his clients don&rsquo;t argue that the retailers&rsquo; 4x4s (and, in the Menards&nbsp;case, a 1x6 board as well) are not the correct size under the standards published by the U.S. Department of Commerce. The product labels, however, should disclose that those are &ldquo;nominal&rdquo; designations and not actual sizes, Turin said...</em></p> Elon Musk unveils his plan to colonize Mars with a million humans Julia Ingalls 2017-06-22T12:37:00-04:00 >2017-06-22T15:13:57-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="390" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>&ldquo;It would be quite fun to be on Mars because you would have gravity that is about 37% of that of Earth, so you would be able to lift heavy things and bound around,&rdquo; [Elon Musk] adds, predicting that journey times could eventually be cut to 30 days.</p></em><br /><br /><p>Aside from the money, specific technology, and solid timeframe, Elon Musk has figured out a way to get to Mars. The colonization plan, which is designed to place about 1 million people on the planet in 40-100 years using a yet-to-be constructed ship that would carry 100 passengers per trip, needs more financial backers before Musk can definitively settle on a launch date. Many scientists have objected to the plan on various technological grounds, although one brought up the problem of potentially contaminating alien life forms:</p> <p><em>Prof Andrew Coates, who works on the ExoMars rover&nbsp;at University College London&rsquo;s Mullard Space&nbsp;Science Laboratory, said that the question of whether present or past life existed on Mars needed to be answered before a manned mission, which could contaminate the surface, could be considered. &ldquo;There&rsquo;s a moral imperative to keep Mars as it is for the moment. Until we&rsquo;ve conclusively answered that question we should keep our feet on the ground ... going there wou...</em></p> Architecture Billings Index in May shows gains in all sectors and "balanced growth" Alexander Walter 2017-06-21T13:53:00-04:00 >2017-06-21T13:54:22-04:00 <img src="" width="650" height="412" border="0" title="" alt="" /><em><p>Design services at architecture firms continue to project a healthy disposition on the construction industry as the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) recorded the fourth consecutive month of growth. [...] (AIA) reported the May ABI score was 53.0, up from a score of 50.9 in the previous month. This score reflects an increase in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings).</p></em><br /><br /><p><em>&ldquo;The fact that the data surrounding both new project inquiries and design contracts have remained positive every month this year, while reaching their highest scores for the year, is a good indication that both the architecture and construction sectors will remain healthy for the foreseeable future,&rdquo; AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. &ldquo;This growth hasn&rsquo;t been an overnight escalation, but rather a steady, stable increase.&rdquo;</em></p> <p>The AIA reports these key ABI stats for the month of May:</p> <ul><li>Regional averages: South (56.1), West (52.3), Midwest (50.4), Northeast (46.5)</li><li> Sector index breakdown: mixed practice (55.8), multi-family residential (51.3), commercial / industrial (51.2), institutional (51.2)</li><li>Project inquiries index: 62.4</li><li>Design contracts index: 54.8</li></ul><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><figure><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img src=""></a></p></figure><p><em>All graphs represent data from May 2016 - May 2017. Images provided by the American Institute of Architects.</em><br></p>