July 2018 Newsletter

Summer is definitely here and HOT! AIA Birmingham has been pretty hot too with interesting speakers, HSWs, cool venues, and there is more to come! This month is an interesting partnership with the National Audubon Society learning about Bird Friendly Designs with Claire Halpin from Studio Gang presenting. Then we move on to some topics that can get a little uncomfortable to discuss coming up in the next few months. We will discuss ADA and the silver tsunami that is headed your design way. Are you familiar with VISITbility?? There is a need for these developments.

Women in Architecture, Diversity, and Equity are topics across the A/E/C industry. Conversations about these topics need to be had by all firms/companies in the industry. AIA Birmingham is hosting a traveling exhibit from AIA Houston. This exhibit is about women who have made a contribution to the industry.

The Gulf States Young Professional Symposium is embracing the uncomfortable conversations with a look at a Tale of Two Birmingham’s and a brief history of Red Lining in Birmingham. Yes, there are two Birmingham’s. We discussed a charrette on the front end of the YP Symposium schedule. Our usual answer to a neighborhood that needs help. We learned the neighborhoods have charrette fatigue and so do most of you.  We keep having the same conversations/charrettes and expect a different result. I think some of us older peeps could learn from the Young Professionals and try a different approach.

IF you are passionate about any of the above topics and would like to volunteer, email/call/write/text me.

Let’s have very uncomfortable conversations and see what happens!

Diversity & Peace,
Rhea Williams, Executive Director AIA Birmingham
Alabama Center for Architecture


Mark your calendars for the 2018 Scholarship Awards Ceremony!

 Join us at The Club on July 17th from 11:00-1:00 p.m. to honor our 2018 scholarship winners and newly licensed architects. In partnership with the Birmingham Audubon Society, our keynote speaker is Claire Halpin from Studio Gang. Founded by MacArthur Fellow Jeanne Gang, Studio Gang is an architecture and urban design practice with offices in Chicago, New York, and San Francisco. Architect Claire Halpin is a Senior Project Leader in Studio Gang’s Chicago office, leading design teams for ecological, cultural, and educational projects. Driven by the complex, interdisciplinary, and spatial problem-solving nature inherent in architecture, design, and planning, Claire is experienced in designing and leading teams with a wide range of disciplines and will be speaking on bird safe design. We hope to see you there!

Building Habitat (1HSW Pending)

  • Using Studio Gang’s body of work as a case study, Claire will help participants recognize how architecture can promote wellbeing for its users while also cultivating a vibrant natural ecosystem of plants and animals, working across climates and typologies.
  • Participants will be able to identify specific building components and construction techniques that can improve safety for animals, reducing bird strike through integrated architectural elements described by Claire.
  • Participants will gain an understanding of Studio Gang’s design methodology, which prioritizes a beneficial relationship between animals and people. Claire will illustrate the design process for projects including the Ford Calumet Environmental Center, Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo, Northerly Island and the Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership at Kalamazoo College.
  • Bird-friendly materials and design features often overlap in function with materials to control heat and light, security measures, and decorative design details. Bird friendly building-design strategies also fall into three general categories, although all three could be combined in a single structure. Participants will learn about these strategies and how they can be applied for a cost-effective and bird-friendly design.

Tickets are $20; Click HERE to purchase tickets!

Please RSVP to sarah@aiabham.org by July 15th.

We would like to give a warm welcome to our new Silver Sponsors

Interior Elements, Inc. & Lighting Solutions!

You can view more about the companies here:

Thank you to our 2018 AIA Birmingham Chapter Sponsors!

A full list of sponsors is listed on the right column of this page. Check out the 2018 sponsorship brochure here.

Save the Date!

August Chapter Meeting: ADA Workshop with IIDA

August 21, 2018

Designing for a Lifetime” – ADA Workshop (3 HSWs)

Are We Design Ready for the Silver Tsunami – AARP

VISITbility – Lakeshore Foundation

Understanding the Codes – Jim Terry, Evan Terry & Associates

More info coming soon! 

Emerging Professionals

Architecture Trivia Night: Project Development and Documentation

Thursday, July 26th 6:00-7:30 p.m.
The Alabama Center for Architecture
109 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd South

$10 single player, $25 team of 3 (we will make teams with single players)
Includes pizza & beer

RSVP to sarah@aiabham.org by July 24th

Click here to buy tickets

This is a great opportunity to inform upcoming young professionals about your companies!
Interested in sponsoring this event? Fill out this form and contact sarah@aiabham.org today!

Career Center

Check out the AIA Career Center for all the hottest jobs and access to the Career Learning Center, which encourages an integrative career and professional development process that enhances your skill set.

Jobseekers – we have LOTS of jobs listed on the website! Don’t miss AIA Birmingham’s Career Page for the latest local opportunities.

Employers – post your jobs on the AIA Birmingham website! FREE for local member firms. Email Sarah@aiabham.org for more details.




October 18, 2018
RTJ Oxmoor Valley
100 Sunbelt Pkwy

All proceeds benefit the ACFA’s educational programs & student scholarships.
We hope to see you there!

RSVP to Sarah@karmamanagementinc.com by October 11th

Sponsorships available
Hole, Meal, Drink Cart, and more!
View the sponsorship brochure here and purchase tickets & sponsorships HERE!