Natural disasters and how to build

Hurricane Ian struck Cuba, Florida, and South Carolina. With winds just under Category 5 levels, it was the strongest hurricane to hit the US in decades. Our thoughts are with those mourning the loss of loved ones and those struggling to recover from the significant damage.

As usual, events like these force us to think about where and how we should build. We can continue to debate whether development should continue in places like New Orleans, Miami, and other low-lying areas. But it is clear that we need to constantly develop the technology and design strategies that will help reduce environmental impact, yet prove durable enough to survive such catastrophic events.

In the meantime, I urge those with the means to donate to a charity helping the survivors get back on their feet.


Billings Rebound in August

The August AIA Architecture Billings Index jumped to 53.3, which is in line with the May and June numbers. Design Contracts fell slightly to 52.3, which is indicative of a slower pace of growth. 

The commentary covers the Federal Reserve’s interest rate increases. In addition, they discuss how firms report that clients are investing in environmental performance improvements for their projects.

Recent layoffs by Tech companies and continued inflation are ominous signs for the economy. The stock market is also in a bear market indicating some concern by investors. However, owners continue to build and are signing new design contracts. 

Let’s hope this continues.

August: 53.3, July: 51.0, June: 53.2, May: 53.5, April: 56.5, March: 58.0

ABI August 2022: Billings continue to grow at architecture firms

: : :

Autodesk Announces Forma as Future

Last week, prior to Autodesk University 2022, we reported on the Nordic Letter, where architects complained about the lack of improvement in very costly Revit software. Autodesk has since announced their thinking behind the future of AEC design and documentation cloud platform: Forma, which will integrate document sharing from conceptual design through operations and maintenance.

Architosh’s Anthony Frausto-Robledo has an interesting take, saying that were have to wait and see if the AEC community revolts or quickly jumps onboard.

I think this new strategy will be helpful for owners and the construction process, but will leave architects wanting. Sadly, Revit still has a lot of basic bugs that impairs workflow. In the eyes of many architects, Autodesk is looking at the big picture at the expense of the details.

From Architosh: Autodesk Begins New Era for Future of Architecture

From Autodesk: Autodesk announces cloud-based solutions that extend the digital thread, drive sustainability

: : :

Bluebeam Moving to Subscription with Bluebeam Cloud

Speaking of software updates that will make people unhappy, Bluebeam is following in the footsteps of Autodesk and Adobe by moving their software to a subscription plan. It comes with updated cloud tools, which appear to be beneficial as in improvement over Bluebeam Studio. We’ll see how the industry responds.

In the meantime, we are checking BBToolsets for compatibility with Revu 21 and the new Bluebeam Cloud. We are also working on updates to the Architecture Tools, while also developing new MEP toolsets. More to come on that later in the year.

Bluebeam Introduces Bluebeam Cloud: Designed for the Business of Building

: : :

Two Story 3D-Printed House Under Construction in Houston

The tallest 3D-printed house in the world is under construction in Houston. The 4,000 SF house integrates the printed concrete with wood and glass volumes.

Construction Is Underway on the First Multi-Story 3D-Printed House in the United States

: : :

More Information Emerges About Bernheimer Unionization

It will be interesting to continue following this story. The firm is currently negotiating with employees and their union representatives.

Inside the Successful Union Campaign at Bernheimer Architecture