March 2015 News


$50.05 per month to market in a national database?!

Hello Beautiful Architects,
How many memberships do you have? AIA, USGBC, CSI, church, AAA, YMCA/Gym, Toast Masters, Country Club, Sierra Club, Hunting Club, Non-Profit organizations, book club and the list could go on. Once we pay the membership fee, our membership includes BENEFITS, BUT WE DO NOT TAKE ADVANTAGE of these benefits. And each membership has so many benefits. AAA offers free travel agents, discount on hotels and I just read they offer free security fraud services. The YMCA/GYM is obvious, use your membership and be healthier. Are you using your member benefits?

AIA Membership – Free national marketing – Is your firm profile on the Find an ARCHITECT link? Fill out your firm profile on the member page. The FIND an ARCHITECT link is on local, state and national AIA websites. Other benefits include job posting/career page, 10% off contract documents, compensation survey, firm surveys, commercials promoting architecture, print ads, HOUZZ, advocacy…

Your firm profile on the FIND an ARCHITECT link is your FREE advertising in a national data base or break it down. AIA Membership is $606.00 divided by 12 = $50.05 per month to market your firm profile in a national database!

There were only a few Birmingham firms listed on the Find an Architect link – Update your Profile today. Take advantage of your AIA membership benefits.

See you at the next 50th AIA Anniversary Celebration! Or at FAITH Skate March 17th.

Peace & AIA Love,

Rhea Williams
Executive Director

Save our Architecture Firm History!

We are putting together a BIRMINGHAM ARCHITECTURUAL 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, AIA, LEED AP at today!


Thank you to all our sponsors who paid for memberships in February (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 with any questions.

Gorrie Regan

Engineering Design Technologies, Inc.
Hagerman & Company

FireRock Building Products


CherylMorganDesign Awards Entry Workshop with Cheryl Morgan, FAIA

Friday, March 13 | 11:30 am -1:00 pm | $15 for members, $25 nonmembers lunch included
Alabama Center for Architecture | 109 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. South

RSVP to by March 11.

Looking to enter Design Awards this year? Then you don’t want to miss this workshop! Cheryl Morgan, FAIA, formerly of Auburn University Urban Studio, will be sharing tips and tricks on impressing juries. Cheryl has chaired and juried AIA and other design competitions across the U.S. She will critique real life examples, revealing what juries are looking for in Design Awards entries. Space is limited, so make sure you RSVP!

  • 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. 

Skate Parks & Special Needs – 1 HSW

Tuesday, March 17 | 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. | $15 members, $25 nonmembers
Faith Skate Supply | 1305 2nd Ave N, Birmingham AL 35203
RSVP to by March 13.

Building a skate park is labor intensive and a highly specialized endeavor. If the architect doesn’t get it right the first time, the public will be skating lumpy transitions and similar mistakes for a long time to come. Crys Worley of the A.Skate Foundation will present skate workshops she and Peter (owner of Faith Skate) have given across the country for special needs children, as well as ways to make sure the park is ADA compliant for the use of beginners and skaters with special needs. Children with autism often struggle with the ability to follow directions, playing on a team due to the lack of social skills, and many require activities to be performed on their own terms. Skateboarding and autism just fit!

  • 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! 


Brewery Design & Home Brewing – 1 HSW

Tuesday, April 7 | $15 for members, $30 for nonmembers (includes one beer ticket)
4:30 – 5:30 p.m. | Brewery Tour & Lecture at Cahaba Brewing | 2616 3rd Ave S
6:00 – 6:30 p.m. | Home Brewing Lecture at Hop City | 2924 3rd Ave S

MUST RSVP to by April 5. Seated is limited for Home Brewing lecture

The second in our 50th Anniversary Celebration Series (presented in partnership with Alabama Power Company), the Brewery Design & Tour will be a time to learn from Cahaba Brewing Company’s master brewer Eric Meyer about what works best for brewery design — all while you network & enjoy libations. Then, if you’re interested, make your way to Hop City Birmingham for a lesson in the art of home brewing.

Cancellation Policy: We require 24-hour notice on all cancellations. If you RSVP and do not cancel, you will be charged the full amount for the event. 

IMG_3520Recap: Bar Design Class

Our first 50th Anniversary Celebration was a huge success. Eric Bennett gave a great presentation on bar designs giving examples of bars across the nation (good and bad). He touched on lighting, acoustics, back of house and gave some great tips for architects designing bars. Note: bars need trash cans behind the bar (but not seen by guest), POS is very important for staff, but again guests do not need to see this, it reminds us of how much money we are spending, bars need lots of ice/beer and need to restock regularly during the night. Staff should not have to walk thru the bar to refill ice or beer, this should be back of house. Mixologist need all their tools in one area to keep the drinks going as fast and smoothly as possible. Very obvious suggestions, but sometimes get lost in the big scheme of the design process.

To see more photos, click here.

Dave's 2015_091Feb. Meeting: FAT TUESDAY– Let’s PLAY – Park Design & ADA Playgrounds

February’s chapter meeting was held at Dave’s Pizza and focused on park design and ADA playground solutions. Nimrod Long with Nimrod Long & Associates discussed examples of local park design and the goals that clients and designers have for each park and how they strive to make them destination places. In addition, he addressed several problems that surfaced when designing these parks and how the issues were successfully resolved by the design team.

Also, Luci Beavers with Kompan gave a fun and informative presentation on playground solutions. She covered the well-known issues of designing a fun and attractive playground that is safe and meets accessibility regulations. The presented design solutions, offered by Kompan, were so intriguing that you could hear Architects at each table murmuring that they wished they could each have one of these playgrounds for themselves. The creative design solutions by Kompan were fun, invoked imagination, and offered a variety of activities so that every kid could feel encouraged to play and use the use the equipment. Beavers also discussed locations nearby that these playgrounds were being installed. Field trip anyone?! To view more pictures from the meeting, click here.  





Grandview-sProject Life Cycle Meeting Series: Pt. 3 (Architect)

Friday, March 27 | 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. | Free with RSVP + Lunch
Alabama Power 3rd Floor Auditorium | 1200 6th Ave North

RSVP to and indicate which group you represent.

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. For the second meeting, we will be hearing from Earl Swensson Associates in Nashville, Tenn. about their architectural insight into the project. 

ncarb-logoNCARB Tip of the Month

For Emerging Professionals currently or soon-to-be taking the ARE: NCARB recently posted several videos to YouTube showing best practices for solving the vignettes and tips for studying for the multiple choice sections of the exams. You can find the video playlist here:

NCARB has also created an ARE Community on Google+ where you can post questions and get answers from your peers. With more than 1,500 users and growing, this is a great resource that could save you time when you’re studying. Visit the ARE Community page here:  


2015 Brick in Architecture Awards Announces Call-For-Entries  

Get the national recognition you deserve for your breakthrough projects
The Brick Industry Association is pleased to announce a call-for-entries for the 2015 Brick in Architecture Awards (view full press release), and we cordially invite you to submit your best work to the competition! As the largest and most prestigious juried awards program of its kind, the Brick in Architecture Awards showcase the best work in clay face and paving brick from architects across the country in the following categories:

Commercial (Under $10 Million)
Commercial (Over $10 Million)
Education – K-12
Education – Colleges & Universities (Higher Education)*
Health Care Facilities
Municipal / Government
Houses of Worship
Residential – Single Family
Residential – Multi-Family
Renovation (Additions)** / Restoration (Restoring)
Paving & Landscape Projects

* Includes residence halls & academic/administrative buildings
**Additions must use at least 50 percent new clay brick products on the building. Restoration must include at least 50% new clay brick products, which must be new clay brick placed in the wall.
Best in Class winners will receive national recognition through a special Brick in Architecture insert in the December 2015 issue of Architect  magazine! Other winners will be listed in the insert as well as in Brick News Online. All entrants will be featured on BIA’s online Brick Photo Gallery.

The 2015 awards competition will be conducted entirely online. For complete information on eligibility, submission requirements, and judging, visit
To start your entry, visit
Deadline for submission of all entries is April 30, 2015.
Brick makes a lasting statement — and winning this award could solidify your name in architecture. Log on today and submit your entry to the 2015 Brick in Architecture Awards!
If you have any questions, please contact Tricia Mauer at or 703-674-1539.

doc ad