Safety week is for architects, too

The last issue came out on the first day of 2023 Safety Week and I didn’t bring it up, but I think it is an important issue to discuss. Safety Week is obviously directed toward the building trades who are doing much more dangerous work that the design team. However, many architects and engineers spend time on construction sites.

I have seen very excited young professionals visit the job site for the first time and eagerly wander around without paying attention. I have seen very experienced design professionals put themselves in a dangerous situation simply because they had let their guard down after hundreds of site walks. And of course, every couple of years we hear a story about an architect who was seriously injured or killed on a job site.

Please take a moment to remind yourself just how dangerous construction sites are. Do not let your guard down. Pay attention to what is going on above, below, and around you.

And as I have said multiple times in the past, consider getting your staff OSHA 10-hour training and make sure to provide quality Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to your team.

Everyone should go home at the end of their day.


Snøhetta’s US Workers Latest to Ask to Unionize

Workers in the New York and San Francisco offices of Snøhetta are seeking to unionize. Staff in their Oslo office are already part of a union, which is common in Norway. It appears that the firm will start discussions with the employees and union, but has not yet officially recognize the union.

Workers in Snøhetta’s U.S. studios petition to unionize

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Autodesk Launches Forma

Forma was announced a couple months ago, but Autodesk officially launched last week. The cloud program is intended for use in the early planning stages of a project. And, of course, there are artificial intelligence tools to help the design team make informed decisions about light, noise, wind, and energy use.

Engineering News Record has a good article covering what Forma is and is not.

Press Release: Autodesk Introduces Forma for Next-Generation Building Design in the Cloud

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Do You Tell a Project Story with Video? Perhaps you Should.

The architectural monograph has been the staple of sharing architectural projects for decades. But this is 2023, and the tools to tell your stories with video are available to everyone on any budget. Plus, mass distribution channels (like YouTube) allow you to tell your own story.

Firms should put out videos. Architects should experiment with video reels as portfolios. Video is the future. Heck, even Archtoolbox should be making videos.

Immersive Digital Storytelling: Why More Architects Should Use Video to Showcase Their Projects

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Another Week, Another Crop of AI Discussions

Artificial Intelligence tools seem to pop up daily. The existing tools are advancing so quickly it is hard to keep up with our meager human intelligence. That said, architects who want to remain relevant in their careers should keep an eye on the space and should experiment with the new tools. AI will likely be another tool in the arsenal to help us build better buildings. Here are two views from Architect and one from Engineering News-Record.

You, Me, and DALL-E: On the Relationship Between Architecture, Data, and Artificial Intelligence

Autonomous Algorithmic Architects: Wicked Problems of Machine Learning in Architecture

Move Past The Chatter

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nd a Counterpoint About Craft

Although AI is coming, there is still an argument about keeping the craft in our profession through hand drawings and physical models. Here are two counter-points.

5 Reasons Why Architects Must Not Give Up On Hand Drawings and Physical Models

Hand-Drawing Versus AI Tools: I Sketch, Therefore I Am