February 2015 News


Are you Making a Social Impact??

Happy 50th AIA Birmingham Members,

One of our goals for our 50th anniversary is to promote the IMPACT architecture has in a community, neighborhood, city… Architecture impacts everyone. Everyone at some point goes to the hospital, school, church/temple/mass, movies, shopping, grocery store, vet, state parks and rest areas or lives in a house, apartment or condo. Part of our challenge is getting each person to realize that an architect designed the majority of these structures/buildings. And architects take into consideration every move we will make in a building before we even walk in the door. You think about the user from the time we park our car and walk into the entrance. You solve problems on the front end that we, the user, never even knew about (saving client’s money too). You make our life easier, more enjoyable.

As part of our 50th anniversary campaign, we have new ads sketched by you (members) promoting architects as problem solvers who make our daily life a better place.

SOCIAL IMPACT – There are so many of you who volunteer your time on boards & committees and have provided in kind services for non-profits, design review boards, city councils and school boards. All these volunteer hours are making a social impact. This is not about promoting you or your firm, this is about promoting the social impact the architectural profession has on our society. Let us know if you are making a social impact– email aiabirm@aiabham.org so we can include you in how the architectural profession is making a social impact.

We have a reason to celebrate this year, let’s make the most of it and EDUCATE others on the VALUE of an architect! Our 50th Anniversary is an OPPORTUNITY to share your gift with others.

Peace and AIA love,
Rhea Williams,
Executive Director AIA Birmingham

Save our Architecture Firm History!

As you know, we have a long and wonderful tradition of Architecture and Architectural Practice in this town. However, the connections between the team of amazing people designing these structures and the buildings themselves is often lost.

We are putting together a BIRMINGHAM ARCHITECTURAL FIRM FAMILY TREE for the upcoming 50-year anniversary. The goal is to create a mural size poster illustrating the evolution of architectural practice in Birmingham over the last 50 years (1965-2015).

To make this happen we need your help. If you are interested in having your firm represented, please click here for more information. Click here to view the latest version of the Birmingham Firm Tree – if your firm is not listed, contact Brannon Foster at brannonfoster@hotmail.com today!

Save the Dates!

Don’t miss upcoming AIA and ACFA events! Check the right side of the newsletter to view Upcoming Events, or visit the events page on our website at aiabham.org/events.


We have a wonderful year planned for 2015! Thank you to all our sponsors who paid for memberships in January (below). A complete list of sponsors is listed on the right side of the page. If you have not renewed, please see the sponsorship form here  or email kathryn@aiabham.org with any questions.

J.R. Prewitt & Associates

Building & Earth Sciences, Inc.

Block USA / Cemex
Business Interiors
Mullins Building Products
Sherwood Cox Photography
VW Gallerie at V&W Supply Company

2015_ad_mem_web ads_600x400_JOIN-07Membership & Payment Plans

Have you renewed your AIA membership for 2015? If not, now is the perfect time so you can take advantage of all AIA has to offer! To see our local member benefits, visit our new Membership page. Renew today at www.aia.org/renew!

And remember, ALL renewing, new & reinstating Architect, Associate, International Associate, Allied (Institute only), and New Graduates are eligible to participate in the 2015 Dues Installment Program. For more information, visit AIA National’s FAQ page at http://www.aia.org/about/aiab081429 or contact Rhea or Kathryn with questions.


FAT TUESDAY– Let’s PLAY – Park Design & ADA Playgrounds – 1 HSW

Tuesday, Feb. 17 | 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. | $15 members, $25 nonmembers

Dave’s Pizza | 1819 29th Avenue South, Homewood, AL 35209

RSVP to kathryn@aiabham.org by Feb. 13.

FAT TUESDAY FUN WITH AIA! Wear your beads or mardi gras colors for this fun meeting. Nimrod Long, of Nimrod Long & Associates, and Lucy Beaver, of Kompan, will teach us how to create playground designs that meet the unique needs of all children. You will learn about the range of disabilities of playground participants, and tips and strategies will be provided on how to make small to major changes in their play spaces to make playgrounds not just welcoming, but engaging, challenging and therapeutic. This event is part of the Alabama Center for Architecture Fit Nation series, made possible by a grant from the Blue Cross Blue Shield Caring Foundation.

  • Cancellation policy: Must give 24 hours’ notice of cancellation. If you cancel less than 24 hours before or do not show up to the meeting without notice, you will be billed the cost of the meeting.
  • Please let us know if you have dietary restrictions. We want our lunch & learns to be inclusive for all dietary needs!

January Meeting – How to Get Recognition for your Projects

Photo Jan 20, 11 30 26 AMJanuary’s chapter meeting at the Alagasco Center for Technology focused on building media relationships as an integral part of your firm’s Public Relations strategy. Ashley Kizzire, Senior Editorial Director for Constructive Communication, showed how to pitch stories that are seen as newsworthy and shared insights that will either ingratiate you with, or infuriate, writers and editors.

Ms. Kizzire emphasized treating the media like a client. Tailor your pitches for each publication’s specific target audience. Find the publication’s appropriate contact, understand their preferences for communication, and submit materials in their requested format. Use professional courtesy by refraining from haranguing inquiries and by meeting their deadlines. You’ll build lasting relationships by making the press’s job easier. The presentation concluded with strategies for managing the press during a crisis such as a roof collapse. Suggestions included never saying “no comment” (unless you want to look suspicious) and establishing a crisis communications plan with a clear hierarchy before an incident occurs. Also, special thanks to Tre’ Morton from UPS Caldwell Mill for showing us what his 3-D printer can do! To view photos from the meeting, click here.

March’s Meeting Preview: Skate Park Design & Autism – 1 HSW

March 17, 2015 | 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. | $15 members, $25 nonmembers
Faith Skate Supply | 1305 2nd Ave N, Birmingham AL 35203

Great Temple of Travel: The Design and Legacy of Birmingham Terminal Station

50th Anniversary Exhibit Opening

TS-Postcard-1Tuesday, March 10 | 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. | FREE, with RSVP to kathryn@aiabham.org

Alabama Center for Architecture | 109 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. South, Birmingham AL 35233

Featuring historical drawings, photographs and postcards, this exhibition highlights the architecture and impact of Birmingham Terminal Station. Built in 1909, in its early twentieth-century heyday Terminal Station was a hub of southern rail travel and an architectural marvel. Great Temple of Travel offers viewers a window into the station’s design, construction and status as a Magic City icon.

Presented in partnership with the Birmingham Public Library

Sponsored by Goodwyn, Mills & Cawood

urban sketchers 01Urban Sketchers

In January, the Urban Sketchers visited the historic Alabama Theater to practice our sketching of interiors. We had a good turn out with some new folks in attendance and visited Revelator coffee afterward to discuss our sketches.

Urban Sketchers meets the second Sunday of every month at various places around the city. We will meet on Feb. 8 at 2:30 at Kelly Ingram Park/Civil Rights Museum. As always, any skill level is welcome, and check out urbansketchers.tumblr.com to see more of our work!


Embracing Silence Opening Reception

mossrock-015More than 130 people attended our opening reception of Embracing Silence, a black and white photography exhibit of Moss Rock Preserve by Joseph De Sciose. Special thank you to the City of Hoover for lending us this beautiful exhibit, and to our sponsors as well—Landscape Workshop, Asplundh and Presentations Etc. Studio. The exhibit will be displayed in the Alabama Center for Architecture until Feb. 13. The gallery is open from Tuesday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. See photos from the opening here.


dreamArchitecture Teacher Workshop

We say it every year, but this year was the BEST teacher workshop with 10 teachers. Brian Giattina, City of Birmingham School Board, Create Birmingham Board, and of course GA Studio gave an inspiring talk about statistics proving the arts are a driving force in our economy. To view the report click here. http://www.createbirmingham.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/CreativeBhamReport_Final.pdf

Chris Giattina presented BLOX and explained the process from the problem to the solution, because as we all know architects are problem solvers. The theme for dreamArchitecture is “draw your dreamFACTORY.” Chris gave the teachers a different way to approach the theme. Ask the students if they have a problem with the way something works, then ask them how they would solve the problem and could they solve it by building something or manufacturing something. Teachers loved it!

International artist Adrienne Retief ended the day with a watercolor workshop expressing to the teachers to let the watercolors happen, don’t try to control the colors when they blend. She gave them great tips to take back to the students. Can’t wait to see what the students come up with this year!


roundhouseSite Visit – The Roundhouse in Mountain Brook

Thursday, Feb. 12 | 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. | FREE
3349 Brookwood Road, Mountain Brook AL 35233
Street parking; carpool if possible

Architect: Design Initiative
Original Architect: Fritz Woehle (early 1960s)

RSVP by February 10 to kathryn@aiabham.org.

This modest contemporary residence is benched into a wooded hillside in the quiet traditional neighborhood of Mountain Brook. The original Fritz Woehle design boasted a glass wall around a cylindrical volume pierced by a brick wall plane. The brick wall separates the living area from the rest of the program as well as creates a unique dining room with a conical ceiling, lit by a diffuse skylight. Throughout the years and subsequent renovations/owners, the original design intent was in many ways lost. This renovation aims to restore much of the original design, as well as create a new two story living room volume, optimize as much of the existing square footage, and act as a backdrop from the owners’ extensive art collection.

NCARB & You: IDP, ARE & Certification – 1.5 LU

ncarb-logoTuesday, Feb. 17 | 5:30 – 7:00 p.m. | FREE
Alabama Center for Architecture | 109 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. South
RSVP to kathryn@aiabham.org by Feb. 16

KTuttle HeadshotKimberly Tuttle, AIA, NCARB, from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) will present on a range of licensure topics relevant to students, interns, supervisors, architects, and people in the architecture profession. The presentation will review the steps necessary to achieve licensure to become an architect and other programs to get the most out of your career in architecture.

Topics will include:

  • Background of NCARB
  • The entities involved in the licensure process
  • How to establish an NCARB Record
  • How to progress successfully through the Intern Development Program (IDP)
  • What to expect with the Architect Registration Examination® (ARE®)
  • Recent changes to NCARB programs
  • Value of the NCARB Certificate

Project Life Cycle Meeting Series: Pt. 2 (Architect)

GrandviewFriday, Feb. 20 | 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. | Free with RSVP + Lunch
AGC Alabama | 5000 Grantswood Rd., Ste. 100, Irondale AL 35210

RSVP to nsommerville@lbyd.com by Feb. 18 and indicate which group you are a part of.

If you missed the first meeting, young professional groups of contractors, engineers, architects & financial managers are teaming up to host a series of meetings tailored to the young professional. We are taking a known local project, the Grandview Hospital on 280, and using it to walk through a job from the perspective of each industry group. If you are new to your industry or a seasoned veteran, this is something you don’t want to miss.

Lecture 2 will focus on the Geotechnical and Structural design of the facility. The first 30 minutes we will be hearing from Chuck Burgin, Senior Principal at BHATE and Project lead on the Grandview Project. Following Chuck will be Greg Robinson, Senior Principal at LBYD who oversaw the structural design of the hospital and tower.  They both will have a presentation and be available to answer questions.

HB sponsor spotlight

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