feature

Lessons in Human Nature

Anne Swager's 27 Years with AIA Pittsburgh

By Becky Spevack Posted on June 21, 2017

Anne Swager, Hon. AIA has been called many things – progressive, outspoken, ballsy, an ally, a foe, compassionate, cheerleader, easily distracted, thinker of big ideas. And for the past 27 years, she’s also been called Executive Director of AIA Pittsburgh.  With Anne’s recent retirement on June 5th we are re-running this inspiring interview with then-editor Becky Spevack.  Best of luck in your future travels Anne! Columns: First things first, did you ever expect to be at the AIA this long, to make a career out of it? Anne Swager: No, absolutely not! I never thought I would be around this long. You know, my mom used to say she thought I’d become an architect but my kindergarten teacher spent the...

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Viewpoint

Photo Tour of the Pennsylvania State Capitol Building

Views of the Pennsylvania State Capitol Building During Architects Action Day

By Raymond Bowman, Assoc. AIA Posted on June 7, 2017

Reposted in its entirety from Ray Bowman’s blog RMB-Design: Architecture Made Accessible. As I mentioned last year, I’m doing more and more with the American Institute of Architects (the AIA), both locally, regionally and nationally. It’s part of the reason that I don’t blog about things until months after I do them anymore. One important role of the AIA is to advocate for all architects and support legislation that is supportive for the profession. That’s why the organization moved its headquarters to Washington, D.C. from New York City 50 years ago, to have a louder voice in influencing national legislation. But all politics is local, which is why regional and local chapters of the AIA organize their own lobbying days. Pennsylvania’s...

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Feature

I Belong to the AIA Because …

Architects on the Value of Membership

By AIA Pittsburgh Posted on February 7, 2017

Columns has included a ‘Dossier’ of AIA members almost since its inception as AIA Pittsburgh’s chapter magazine. Here we feature a selection of members’ answers about why they belong to AIA. 1. Paul Rosenblatt, AIA I value the talents, perspectives, and friendship of my colleagues in the profession. Architects are a rare breed and it takes one to know one. 2. Nicole Graycar, AIA The amazing young women in YAF. 3. Dutch MacDonald, AIA It allows me to stay connected to my colleagues in the profession and contribute to the ongoing evolution of the practice. 4. Christian Hughes, Assoc. AIA It is an association of professionals from all ages, walks of life, and backgrounds with one common goal – designing...

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Viewpoint

New Year, Old Face

What's Old is New Again

By Maya Henry Posted on December 28, 2016

Here at AIA Pittsburgh we are ringing in the new year with a new editor at Columns (you may have read that Becky Spevack signed off to devote herself full-time to her bacon-making business).  I’m Maya Henry and I worked here from 2001-2006 when I left to pursue my degree in Historic Preservation Planning. It was working at AIA Pittsburgh and meeting so many passionate architects and designers that got me excited about historic preservation, and I was proud to have the support and mentorship of many of you as I made the decision to attend Cornell. While pursuing my degree I had many opportunities, including leading a trip to Pittsburgh for the whole Department of City and Regional Planning at Cornell,...

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FEATURE

A Letter to Our Members

Our Commitment to You and to Our Community...

Dear AIA Pittsburgh Members and Partners, We have heard from several of you expressing concerns and criticism about Robert Ivy’s initial press release and the subsequent explanation. The fractious nature of the recent campaign is evident in your comments and expressive of the anxiety many feel. While we have responded to many of you individually, we thought it was important to affirm with everyone our commitment to you and to our community. AIA Pittsburgh will continue our work to advance the profession of architecture and to strengthen our community through design. The work of AIA Pittsburgh is based on a set of shared values. We are committed to public health, safety, and welfare of the built environment; diversity; equity; sustainability;...

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HAPPENINGS

Design Pittsburgh 2016

Highlights + Photos

By AIA Pittsburgh Posted on November 4, 2016

Design Pittsburgh is a celebration of architecture and design, and honors those who create it. Design Pittsburgh raises the profile of architects as critical resources and industry experts in the Pittsburgh region. Through exhibits and events, this program provides excellent exposure of architects’ work to a wide variety of audiences – including potential customers. This year we had: 1,000+ people visited the exhibit during the gallery crawl, PechaKucha Night, and Storey Telling 570 attended the Design Awards Ceremony & Gala 4,582 votes for the People’s Choice Award, a 20% increase from last year 55,990+ unique page views throughout the Design Pittsburgh promotional period Additionally, Design Pittsburgh highlights the importance of good design in our region – and how our members, sponsors, partners, and...

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Collecting Cans

CANstruction Pittsburgh’s 2016 Award-winning Structures

Earlier this summer, teams comprised of local architecture, engineering, and construction companies came to together to build sculptures out of cans for CANstruction Pittsburgh’s sixth annual event to raise awareness of the fight against hunger while collecting food to donate to local food banks. The structures – built at the Mall at Robinson – were built by 9 different local teams, including: Michael Baker International, Piper O’Brien Architects, DLA+ Architecture & Interior Design, Perkins Eastman, AE Works, Carpenters Union / ASCE, Rothschild Doyno Collaborative, Desmone Architecture, and the Boy Scouts. The can structures, totaling 24,875 cans, were on display for a month, during which time the public was able to vote for their favorite by placing a can in front of their...

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Small Project, Big Award

Local Firm Wins AIA Small Project Award

The Studio Hive, a part of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s East Liberty Teen Zone, has been awarded an AIA 2016 Small Project Award. Designed by GBBN Architects as part of the larger Teen Zone, the Studio Hive is a space for teens to work on multi-media and digital productions. As part of an ambitious capitol project, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP) is dedicated to providing opportunities within their libraries for teens to explore the worlds of literature and technology while connecting with others. GBBN created the Teen Zone in CLP-East Liberty by transforming a space into places where teens are encouraged to discover their talents, learn new skills, and collaborate with peers and mentors. Based loosely on the...

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Feature

Architects Who Run

A Semi-Serious Essay on the Importance of Running for Architects

By Bea Spolidoro, Assoc. AIA Posted on June 28, 2016

The English poet, William Wordsworth, defined poetry as “a spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes origin from emotion recollected in tranquility.” I feel similarly about running, with the difference being that my thoughts take origin from pain in my left knee. Tranquil once again following the Pittsburgh Half Marathon, I want to address why architects, more than anyone else, should run.  This is especially true for those who, like myself, are not quite yet registered, but on their way. Running is like life: we set goals and then we go about achieving them. The pride I feel when I finish a run allows me to study harder and design with increased rigor. Also, we all know that running releases lots...

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National Spotlight on Sustainable Design

Local Project Wins AIA COTE Top Ten Award

By Becky Spevack Posted on May 12, 2016

The Center for Sustainable Landscapes at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is a recipient of the 2016 AIA COTE Top Ten Green Projects Award. Conceived as a building that provides both a home for administrative and classroom functions, as well as a tool to further the institution’s mission “to advance sustainability and promote human and environmental well-being through action and research,” the concept and design brought together many Pittsburgh- and Pennsylvania-based firms to create this skillfully crafted solution. Designed by The Design Alliance Architects, the project team also included Andropogon Associates, Ltd., evolveEA, 7group, Massaro Corporation, Civil and Environmental Consultants, Atlantic Engineering Services and CJL Engineering. Other team members included Turner Construction, Indevco, Carnegie Mellon University, University of Pittsburgh, and...

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