International Urban Landscape Award (IULA) Competition

The Eurohypo Aktiengesellschaft of Frankfurt, Germany, and Topos – International Review of Landscape Architecture and Urban Design are holding the International Urban Landscape Award (IULA) competition again this year in search of exemplary urban design projects for sustainable development in Germany or the United Kingdom. Taking place for the third time, the competition seeks to contribute towards sustainable ways of securing and advancing the quality of life and economic activity.

This time round, the prize is divided into two categories: Category A, which honours ground-breaking, newly-built or redeveloped urban architecture, and Category B, which recognises initiatives, concepts, designs or research projects in the field of sustainable urban development. Both categories come with a cash prize of €25,000.

Further information and the obligatory project form can be downloaded at www.topos.de

Closing Date: Entries must be received by 3 September 2009

The plight of Britain’s ancient trees – The Guardian

Patrick Barkham of The Guardian reports

Ancient trees are ecological treasures because they provide unique habitats for rare plants, insects, birds and mammals. When they become ancient, trees such as oaks and sweet chestnuts “grow down”, dying at the top and forming a new crown of leaves below so the tree shrinks and hunches like a very old man.

read the full article at the SOURCE: The Guardian – The plight of Britain’s ancient trees

Andrea Cochran: Landscapes for our times – SFGate.com

Zahid Sardar, Chronicle Staff Writer interviews Andrea Cochran about her body of work and her new book

“I felt liberated in this climate to experiment with things I could not have done back East,” says the landscape architect, who arrived in San Francisco in the 1980s from New England.

To read the full interview go to SFgate: Andrea Cochran: Landscapes for our times
Andrea Cochran: Landscapes is printed by Princeton Architectural Press and available at Amazon.

Heart of Doha project work all set to begin – The Peninsula On-line

The Peninsula On-line reports

DOHALAND has awarded contracts to leading industry experts as the company is all set to begin work on the first phase of its ambitious Heart of Doha project.

Turner, in a joint venture with DOHALAND, is providing project and construction management services. DTZ (financial feasibility), Rider Levett Bucknall (cost consultancy), ARUP/EDAW/Allies and Morrison (design regulation and site planning approval), ARUP (infrastructure), and Urbis (retail) are also involved in the project.

read the full article at the SOURCE: The Peninsula On-line – Heart of Doha project work all set to begin

IMAGE SOURCE: Heart of Doha – DOHALAND

Architecture Billings Index Takes Turn for the Worse – AIA

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reports

Washington, D.C. – July 22, 2009 – After showing signs of stabilization over the last three months, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) plunged nearly five points in June. As a leading economic indicator of construction activity, the ABI reflects the approximate nine to twelve month lag time between architecture billings and construction spending. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the June ABI rating was 37.7, far lower than the 42.9 the previous month. This score indicates a sharp decline in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry score was 53.8, the fourth straight month with a score in the mid-50’s.

“It appears as though we may have not yet reached the bottom of this construction downturn,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. “Architecture firms are struggling and concerned that construction market conditions will not even improve as soon as next year. There has also been little movement in terms of stimulus funding allocated for design projects having the desired impact of leading to new work.”

Key June ABI highlights:

o Regional averages: Northeast (42.8), South (40.5), West (39.9), Midwest (36.2)
o Sector index breakdown: mixed practice (43.5), multi-family residential (42.7), commercial / industrial (39.5), institutional (37.0)
o Project inquiries index: 53.8

SOURCE: The American Institute of Architects – Architecture Billings Index Takes Turn for the Worse,

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