March 1 x 4
1 × 4 is an on-going series, where we pose one question to four of our members of various backgrounds in an effort to engage, enlighten and inspire. It’s an effort to dig deeper into what it means to be an architect and to investigate how practice and the profession continues to evolve.
This month’s question:
At this point in your career, of what are you most proud?
David Greusel, FAIA | Convergence Design
Although being elevated to the College of Fellows was a great honor, the thing I am most proud of is having served as the lead designer of PNC Park, the home of the Pittsburgh Pirates, while I worked at HOK Sport. This project, located just across the Allegheny River from Pittsburgh’s “Golden Triangle,” helped to transform the North Shore neighborhood where it’s located. More than that, it helped the citizens of Pittsburgh see baseball, their city, and themselves in a new way. Sitting along the third base line on a summer night when the setting sun is glinting off the beautiful skyline across the river is an experience hard to describe. Keeping the structure out of the incredible view is the particular thing that we did really well. On numerous trips to Pittsburgh since the ballpark opened in 2001, I have never failed to be delighted by the city’s response to this project. Such broad enthusiasm is deeply gratifying, and a continuing motivation to strive for excellence on any project I undertake.
Elizabeth Main, Assoc. AIA | Pulse Design Group
I am proud that I have found ways to contribute to the design community, even before I have finished my path to licensure. While I am still very early into my career, I feel it’s very important to give back to other professionals and “pay it forward” for the assistance others have given me along the way. Last December I participated in NCARB’s Intern Think Tank where I was able to stand as a voice for emerging professionals and speak to the real challenges interns face as we pursue our licenses. Within my firm, I encourage other interns to record their IDP hours and attend AIA study sessions for the ARE. Currently, I am one of the mentors for AIA Kansas City’s ARE Success Team. I am humbled by all of the talent and energy of this profession’s interns, and I want to be a part of all the excitement! In the future, I hope to serve on a variety of professional boards and perhaps even participate in academia in ways that enhance and grow the architectural community.
Darius Hollwell, Assoc. AIA | 360 Architecture
I consider myself a prima donna, self-absorbed, want-to-be starchitect. The only things that set me apart from the likes of Santiago Calatrava or Zaha Hadid are time and opportunity. Time and opportunity, that’s all I need, I have all the skills, the drive, and the highest upside of anyone I know. Maybe I’m a little young and misguided making these overzealous, pompous statements, but hey, I just graduated in May. A month before graduation, I already had an offer from my dream firm – not considering the dream of the aforementioned Santiago or Zaha calling me in for an interview. In reality, they never called me because I never applied, but that’s beyond the point, they should know about me. I guess I had to settle for working on a billion dollar football stadium. Which is ironic; design and sports are without a doubt my two favorite subjects and I actually convinced someone to pay me to work with both. A task I would gladly do for free and with that statement, I hope no one from the office reads this. I digress; I believe the question was “what am I most proud of?” I think it’s clear to see by now, it’s myself. However, I would be nothing without my parents who push me, Santiago and Zaha who inspire me, and that dream firm that gave me the opportunity to pursue my dreams.
Carrie Rezac, AIA | The Weitz Company
Recounting career accomplishments, there is a common theme to many – I have been fortunate through the years to be challenged both professionally and personally. It is rewarding to have been given roles and responsibilities that tested me and took me out of my comfort zone, and I have learned fortitude and diligence to continue to challenge myself. As Eleanor Roosevelt said, “You must do the thing you think you cannot do”.
Although these challenges came individually, the sequential nature of them were like stepping stones; Entering architecture and being told there is a 50-60% drop out rate. Taking the ARE knowing there was a 60-70% pass rate. Being responsible for construction documents of my first competitively bid public project. Moving from a well-established firm to a start-up firm. The ownership of managing projects. Lifting my head up after years of project work to venture into business development. And, most importantly, starting a family knowing there would be a career impact and believing it was right for us. All challenges collectively have allowed me to use my professional knowledge and experience on a broader level in the community and to provide support and encouragement to younger professionals in their early career development.
AIA Kansas City Member Featured in NCARB Blog
We caught up with 2013 Intern Think Tank member Elizabeth Main to chat about diversity in architecture, balancing work-home life, and why licensure matters.
Why do you want to be an architect?
I want to make the world a better place through the built environment. As cheesy as that sounds, it’s really how I feel! Entering a monolithic chapel can make us feel awe-struck and humbled, viewing a trendy skyscraper can make us feel excitement and fascination, and sitting in a cozy cottage can make us feel warm and protected. The built environment affects everyone in it, and I want to be a part of making that environment amazing.
Based on your experience in the field, do you think there’s a gender gap in architecture?
Unfortunately, I feel there is a big gender gap in the field of architecture. I think women as design professionals are regarded highly and given great responsibilities—but they’re still given few opportunities to lead projects and firms. I find it very discouraging that many firms do not endorse part-time work, which is a necessary schedule adjustment for working mothers. I see multitudes of other professions growing around the needs of family-oriented women, yet the architectural community continues to hurt itself by only making room for women who can work sixty hours each week.
Volunteers Needed – PREP-KC Career Jumping
PREP-KC partners with Kansas City’s urban school districts to prepare students for college and careers and is looking for volunteers to participate in Career Jumping. With just two hours of your time, you can partner with PREP-KC to inspire KC’s urban high school students by sharing your career story. Career Jumping is a fast-paced career exploration experience where professionals talk with 3-5 students at a time, much like speed dating. Are you interested in sharing your career story and helping spark students’ interest in careers in architecture? Then share your time and your talents and volunteer for one (or both!) of the dates below:
Friday, March 28th 9:00am-10:30am at Schlagle High School (Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools)
Friday, April 25th, 10:45am-12:45pm at Harmon High School (Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools)
ARCHITECT | ADP Reports 139,000 Jobs Added in February; 14,000 in Construction
The U.S. economy added 139,000 private-sector jobs in February, according to the monthly employment report released by payroll-processing firm ADP and their partner Moody’s Analytics. This number reflects a slight increase from the revised January figure of 127,000—which was previously reported as 175,000.
The construction industry added 14,000 over the month, following downwardly-revised figures of 17,000 in the prior two months. Moody’s Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi attributes those downwardly-revised numbers in part to the weather. “It was really, really cold in December. When it’s really cold, construction workers don’t work. But the survey week for ADP was one of the warmest weeks of the month and those construction workers went back to work. In this case, I think we saw the direct effects of weather,” Zandi said in a conference call.
Despite the unpredictable weather in the last few months, Zandi says: “I expect the housing market to kick into higher gear later this year.”
YAF Announces Monsters of Design Winners for 2014
AIA Kansas City would like to congratulate the recipients of the 2014 Monsters of Design Awards. Awards were given out during the Design Week celebration on March 8.
Home Town Hero
Kansas City Travelogue by Gavin Snider
Category: Illustration / Urbanism / Architecture
Digital Dark Horse
Sayso by Anthony Schmiedeler
Category: Graphic Design / App Design
Health House by Gavin Snider, Kali Buchanan and Kimball Hales
Category: Architecture / Interior Design
CR45 by Josef Lang
Category: Object Design
Lifted: A Look at Airport Typography
Category: Board Design
AIA Kansas City introduces the Center for Architecture & Design
It is with great enthusiasm that AIA Kansas City announces the official opening of the Center for Architecture & Design.
So, what is this Center?
You may have seen information about the Center in newsletters and Letters from the President for over a year now. This year AIA Kansas City is taking steps to bring more form to it … to make it real.
We like to think of it in three distinct ways: Center for Architecture & Design is a PLACE, a COLLECTIVE, and a RESOURCE for our community to benefit from the creativity and ingenuity of design professionals.
As a PLACE, the Center is a destination for events, meetings, and programs that serve the general public as well as the design industry.
As a COLLECTIVE, the Center brings together multiple design industries-architecture, graphic arts, landscape architecture, interior design, urban planning, interior architecture, and others-to strengthen our positive impact in the business and civic communities.
As a RESOURCE, the Center is an easier access point for the public to engage with Architecture & Design, which may include programs and events to spotlight creativity, engagement with a wider audience in discussions about architecture and design, the teaching of design thinking to all ages, celebrations for the achievement of good design contributing to our quality of life and helping our metro area reach its full potential.
So, to be clear … AIA Kansas City very much remains our local chapter and is still focused on providing member value through all of the programming that we have traditionally and strategically offered. This will continue without pause.
The emphasis of the Center is to raise awareness on the value of architecture and design in our city and region. It is outward-focused, more of a window in on AIA Kansas City and the world of design for the rest of our community.
Information Needed | Survey for both women and men on the role of women in architecture
AIA San Francisco has an active committee exploring the role of women in architecture.
The name of the committee is: “The Missing 32%” which is a calculation based on this observation: if 50% of architecture students are women, why are only 18% of licensed architects women?
AIA San Francisco has engaged researchers at Mills College to compile one of the first ever surveys of this topic.
We encourage both men and women to fill out the survey. It takes about 20 minutes.
Call for Submissions | Art by Architects
Are you an architect, landscape architect, interior architect or interior designer?
Do you make beautiful things outside the office, too?
Do you wish you had someplace to show them?
If you answered “yes” to all three of those questions, we’d like to hear from you. Please visit http://www.rafterestudio.com to find out more.
2014 AIA Architectural Photography Competition
AIA St. Louis presents the 2014 AIA Photography Competition. All entries must be submitted on a CD ROM (see http://www.aia-stlouis.org; click on Features for entry form &and prospectus). You may submit black & white or color images. The top 14 entries will be exhibited at the 2014 AIA National Convention in Chicago and in AIArchitect and posted to http://www.aia-stlouis.org.
The Competition is open to any and all architects actively registered in the US. The contest is also open to Associate members of The AIA, and student members of AIAS in good standing. Professional Affiliate or Allied members are not eligible.
First Place Award – $500
Second Place Award – $400
Third Place Award – $300
Fuller Award – $200 (American Architecture Subject)
Entry fee of AIA members (AIA & Assoc. AIA) is $30 for five images.
Entry fee for AIAS members is $15 for five images.
Entry fee for non-member registered architects is $60 for five images
Entries must be postmarked no later than April 1, 2014 and must include:
a. Completed & legible entry form.
b Entry fee (check or money order) payable to AIA St. Louis.
c. Images on CD ROM (Please note: 35mm slides will no longer be accepted).
To read the guidelines and to obtain an entry form, visit http://www.aia-stlouis.org; click on Features; click on Photo Contest or call 314-621-3484
Call for Nominations | MARC Regional Leadership Awards
Each year since 1992, the Mid-America Regional Council has recognized individuals and institutions that have made outstanding contributions to the region. The recipients of MARC’s Regional Leadership awards have advanced a vision of a strong, healthy region and encouraged others to support and work towards that vision.
Recipients may be current or past elected officials; individuals employed as professionals within governmental organizations; institutions or agencies, including governmental units or sub-units, businesses, foundations, civic or non-profit organizations or educational institutions; or volunteer leaders in public or private organizations. Current members of MARC’s Board of Directors are not eligible for nomination.
Submit nominations online by March 21. The awards will be presented at MARC’s Regional Assembly in June.