Architectural practice is an increasingly global endeavor, with materials and collaborators far-flung across the globe. Pittsburgh has long been defined by its waves of immigrants attracted to booming industries and continues to be a place of cultural exchange. The local architectural community continues that trend. For this Columns Q&A, Aleeza Furman and Kyleen Pickering interview Manar Hashem and Will Jodka, two Pittsburgh-based architectural designers who have done a great deal of work internationally. They discuss differences in living and working as senior designers between Dubai and Pittsburgh, with insights for young designers contemplating big moves in their careers. Both Hashem and Jodka recently transferred from architecture firm AE7’s Dubai office to its Pittsburgh office—though they have taken different paths to get...
From Burj Khalifa to PPG Place
Two Designers on Work and Life in Dubai and Pittsburgh
By Aleeza Furman and Kyleen Pickering Posted on October 17, 2018
Ice Box Challenge Pgh
How Did 1800 Pounds of Ice Hold Up in the Pittsburgh Sun?
By Maya Henry Posted on October 10, 2018
Photo by Marissa Dello Russo of AIA Pittsburgh Curious to hear how 1800 pounds of ice has held up over the past four weeks in the Pittsburgh sun (and rain) while encased in two separate boxes designed to simulate conventional construction methods versus Passive House Standard? If you’re an architect (and a gambler) you can feel pretty confident betting that the ice in the Ice Box built to Passive House Standard will win out. And you would be right. The Passive House Standard Ice Boxes consistently retain at least four times more ice than the conventional boxes. Passive House Standard is a proven methodology for achieving high-performance from almost any building type and is...
Dossier: Design Pittsburgh Jury Chair Aaron Hill, AIA
"Get actively involved in the AIA in order to surround yourself with people you will learn from and be inspired by."
Name: Aaron Hill, AIA Firm: Bialosky Cleveland Family: Wife – Carrie & 5-year-old twins – Harper (girl) & Hayden (boy) Years in practice: 20 Education: University of Florida (B. Design) / Georgia Tech (M. Arch) Your first job: Official scorekeeper at the local little league baseball par Project you’re proudest of: NASA Research Support Center – A new workplace being depended on to shift the culture of NASA to attract the next generation of engineers and scientists. What have you always wanted to tell your clients? “They didn’t teach me about you in school.” What’s the most annoying thing architects do? Not listen Favorite tool (can be digital, drafting, physical,…): Moleskine Favorite building: TWA Flight Center Favorite outdoor space: The High Line Architect you’d like to have...
The Diversity of Sustainability and Resilience in Design
Submissions for the 2018 Design Awards
By Maya Henry Posted on September 20, 2018
New for Design Pittsburgh 2018, any built project submitted in another Design Awards category is eligible to also be reviewed for the Excellence in Sustainability + Resiliency award category. This award recognizes built projects that have successfully integrated sustainable and/or resilient building strategies and practices into the design. As defined by the AIA Pittsburgh Design Pittsburgh Committee, sustainability envisions the enduring prosperity of all living things, while sustainable design seeks to create communities, buildings, and products that contribute to this vision. Resilience is the capacity to adapt to changing conditions and to maintain/regain functionality and vitality in the face of stress or disturbance, while resilient design is the intentional design of buildings, landscapes, communities, and regions in response to these...
Rethinking Public Space Starts with a Spark
A Look at the Inspiration for #YAFforSPARK
By Maya Henry Posted on September 13, 2018
The new Spark public patio outside Onion Maiden at 639 East Warrington Avenue in Allentown. Image courtesy Onion Maiden To most of Pittsburgh, new outdoor patio spaces located in Allentown and Downtown may seem to have materialized overnight. However, these two pilot City of Pittsburgh Spark projects were carefully planned, designed and built over many months. The goal of a Spark is to extend the sidewalk into a street’s parking lane, providing space for gathering and relaxation. Part of the City of Pittsburgh’s Complete Streets initiative, Sparks are part of a long-term effort to enhance businesses and invigorate the public realm in a new and unique way. Sparks originated in 2010 in San Francisco to convert parallel parking spaces into areas for...
Dossier: 2018 AIA/YAF Liaison for AIAS at CMU Chitika Vasudeva
"A great building must begin with the unmeasurable ..."
Name: Chitika Vasudeva, AIAS Family: Parents and a younger brother in Kuwait Years in practice: -2 Education: Carnegie Mellon University (B’Arch ’20) Your first job: Research assistant at CMU for professors Francesca Torello and Joshua Bard on the Plaster ReCast project. Whats the most annoying thing architecture students do? Overuse the word ‘juxtaposition’ and compare notes on who slept the least and/or is the most overworked. Favorite tool: Analog tools all the way, whether its Micron pens and Copic markers on trace, or quick and messy conceptual models Favorite building: Schindler House Favorite outdoor space: The Erasmus Bridge The architectural personality you’d like to have a drink with: Ada Louise Huxtable Best gift to give an architect: An all-expenses-paid trip to see...
Review of Emmanuel Panagiotakis' New Black and White Photography Exhibit
By Robyn Engel, AIA Posted on July 22, 2018
Stepping down from the street, Emmanuel Panagiotakis’s gallery feels like a cool cavern away from the hot breath of the city behind you. Upon entering the space, one is immediately bombarded with the deep saturations and bold, sweeping lines that often characterize post-card images of Pittsburgh and other souvenir-worthy destinations. Amidst the showy, prototypical images that speckle the gallery, Leading Lines is an oasis of thoughtful, balanced photography. Panagiotakis capably explores themes of texture, rhythm, and void space within this black and white exhibit that is magnetic and unique in a way that other gallery pieces struggle to achieve. Examining Ceiling Detail, Full View (above), and Ceiling Detail, the observer is first aware of the many textures of the image,...
Beyond the Safe Job Site
The Importance of ICRA Construction
By Bea Spolidoro, AIA, Posted on July 15, 2018
Using ICRA construction methods in Pittsburgh The CDC estimates that, every year, there are 1.7 million hospital-acquired infections (HAI), resulting in 90,000 deaths. Pennsylvania alone has over 25,000 HAI. Infection Control Risk Assessment (ICRA) construction is about preventing contamination from fungi (aspergillum, molds) and bacteria (legionella) during construction, renovation, and maintenance projects, primarily in occupied healthcare facilities. Pittsburgh is a center for excellence and a reference for the ICRA community in North America. Following ICRA construction good practices can actually save lives. Outbreaks and infections often result in poor outcomes for compromised patients and a precise process must be followed in order to track the origin of the problem. Unfortunately, the construction site is often the source of the infection in...
Finding Leadership in All the Right Places
AIA Leadership Institute for Emerging Professionals
By Emily Pierson-Brown, Assoc. AIA Posted on July 3, 2018
Riding the elevator up to the AIA office on the seventh floor of one of Pittsburgh’s stately old office buildings, you could tell we were all a little bit nervous. It was mid-September 2017, and each of us had been accepted into the second year of the AIA Leadership Institute for Emerging Professionals. What this actually meant and what our experiences would be over the course of the next nine months, few of us had any idea about. But we would soon find a unique mix of professional camaraderie, personal inspiration, healthy discomfort, and perhaps slow to develop but deeply sincere friendship. I have often found myself to be an ersatz leader, filling space when there is a leadership vacuum,...
Carnegie Mellon School of Architecture EX-CHANGE
Faculty and Guests Celebrate and Reflect at Second EX-CHANGE Event
By Chitika Vasudeva Posted on June 5, 2018
Photo credit: Carnegie Mellon School of Architecture / Christina Brown This past fall, the Carnegie Mellon School of Architecture (SoA) inaugurated EX-CHANGE, an end-of-semester exhibition celebrating student work. On 4 May 2018, the school opened the second EX-CHANGE, which featured a week-long exhibition followed by a day of discussions with Ming Fung, AIA, principal, and co-founder of Los Angeles-based Hodgets+Fung and director of Academic Affairs at SCI-Arc; Mitch McEwen, assistant professor at Princeton University School of Architecture, principal of McEwen Studio and co-founder of A(n) Office; and Amy Kulper, associate professor and head of the Department of Architecture at the Rhode Island School of Design. Discussions on Saturday, May 5 covered issues of pedagogy and practice framed by questions posed...