Volume 13, No. 2 - March 11, 2019
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BLAST - News and Notes from AIA Northern Virginia

MTFA Architecture PLLC
3200 Lee Highway Studio Loft, by MTFA Architecture, PLLC (more info)

In This Issue

Design Awards are Open

Manoj Dalaya Elevated to Fellowship

Architecture Week

ABI Rebounds to Start 2019

Awards + Opportunities

Featured Project: 3200 Lee Highway
    Studio Loft


Visit the AIA Northern Virginia Website

Manoj V. Dalaya, FAIA Elevated to Fellowship

 Congratulations to Manoj Dalaya, FAIA, one of 115 AIA members elevated to the prestigious College of Fellows, an honor awarded to members who have made significant contributions to the architecture profession.

Manoj serves on our Chapter's Executive Committee as Treasurer and has chaired our Design Awards Committee for four years. A Principal at KGD Architecture with over twenty-five years of planning, urban design, architectural design and management experience, Manoj directs design work on projects for some of the leading national corporate and institutional clients. In addition to receiving both Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Architecture, he holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. Manoj is a valued and active member of the Rosslyn Business Improvement Corporation’s Urban Design Committee and provides critical design input for redevelopment and planning projects. Manoj will be honored at a ceremony on June 7 at the AIA Conference on Architecture 2019 in Las Vegas. Please watch for additional information and photographs in an article in the March-April newsletter. For information on all new fellows, see the Fellows Directory:

Architecture Week April 20-28

Architecture Week is held every April as part of the AIA’s nationwide celebration of our built environment. AIA Northern Virginia will be offering a variety of lectures, tours and activities geared towards architects and the public alike during this week. Popular offerings in past years have been tours of recently completed projects led by the architects who were involved with the design and construction. These tours allow the public and our chapter members to experience buildings they may have seen under construction, or read about, and hear from the architects directly what considerations were important in the planning and execution of the project. If your firm has a project you would like to include in this year's Architecture Week please contact Joe McCoy at jmccoy@sanchezpalmerarchitects.com for more information. Watch for a complete list of Architecture Week activities and updates soon on our Architecture Week Page

AIA Virginia Offers the Art of Practice and SAP Training in Northern Virginia

Art of Practice – March 22
AIA Virginia's second biennial Art of Practice conference will take place at The Winery at Bull Run in Centreville. This day-long event is designed to cultivate leadership skills, identify solutions to common business problems, and fuel collaboration across the profession. Both seasoned and emerging leaders will come together to share and learn best practices. Space is extremely limited and registration is open only to AIA members – www.aiava.org/tag/art-of-practice

Safety Assessment Program (SAP) Training – April 6

This course certifies attendees as Building Evaluators in the nationally recognized Safety Assessment Program (SAP). Intended for licensed architects, engineers, or certified building inspectors, the program is managed by Cal OES with cooperation from professional organizations, including the AIA. It utilizes volunteers and mutual aid resources to assist local governments in safety evaluation of their built environment in the aftermath of a disaster. This course will be held at Jacobs in Arlington. Attendance is limited to 35 – www.aiava.org/event/sap-training.

Strong Start to 2019 for Architecture Billings

 Starting the year on a strong note, architecture firm billings growth strengthened in January to a level not seen in the previous twelve months according to AIA’s Architecture Billings Index (ABI). The ABI score for January was 55.3 compared to 51.0* in December. Indicators of work in the pipeline, including inquiries into new projects and the value of new design contracts, also strengthened in January.

*Every January the AIA research department updates the seasonal factors used to calculate the ABI, resulting in a revision of recent ABI values.

Key ABI highlights for January include:
  • Regional averages: Regional averages: South (54.7), Midwest (54.4), Northeast (52.4), West (51.5).
  • Sector index breakdown: mixed practice (53.8), institutional (52.9), commercial/industrial (52.6), multi-family residential (52.6).
  • Project inquiries index: 59.6
  • Design contracts index: 53.8
More information on AIA's ABI is available online.

Quick Notes...  

ARE Prep Series Underway...   Sessions in Arlington and via webcast in Roanoke and Norfolk [info]...   Tour of Ballston Quarter...   on March 27, hosted by the Young Architects Forum and Women in Architecture [info]...   The Small Firm Roundtable...   comes together for two seminars and lunch on April 4 [info]...

Awards and Opportunities

Due March 18AIA/AAH Healthcare Awards
Due March 20The Architects Foundation/McAslan Fellowship Applications
Due March 29Signatures of Loudoun Design Awards Submissions
Due April 15AIA National Photography Competition Submissions
Due April 26RAIC International Prize for Transformative Architecture
Due June 24AIA Architecture Award Submissions

Design News
Job Board

As a benefit to our members, we maintain a Job Board of local postings. Pay us a visit for postings from: KGA Studio at Kerns Group Architects; Bowie Gridley Architects; ROKK Architecture; Little; Cunningham Quill Architects; George Mason University; MV+A Architects; KGD Architecture; and MTFA Architecture.

Featured Project

3200 Lee Highway Studio Loft
MTFA Architecture, PLLC
Arlington, Virginia

 Vacant for a generation, this site languished while most of the region boomed with development. Located in one of the few remaining industrial zones of Arlington, the original building was built in the 1930’s as a bicycle and lawn mower repair shop.

Pinched against a highway on-ramp, the existing site was too small for an office building and had insufficient parking for retail. The steep slope across the back of the site was both the challenge and solution. Leveling the eroded slope, parking was expanded on the tiny site without the loss of any trees. A new studio loft for 40 people was cantilevered to float simply and sculpturally up into the tree canopy.

Since this underdeveloped industrial zone "should be" redeveloped in the future, the program called for a rudimentary design at modest expense. Nonetheless, it remained essential to create an exciting and invigorating professional office experience to nurture and grow a creative culture.

North facing façade trusses atop concrete columns and steel beams extend from floor to roof for shear stability and maximum natural light. Simple corrugated siding and the exposed concrete base reflects the industrial context and transitions from the scale of the adjacent highway underpass structure.

The pedestrian/bicycle bridge frames the view with a dynamic parade of cyclist, strollers and joggers. The elevated interior obscures the view of the highways from office workstations, and is filled with soft ambient daylight. The open collaborative studio environment surrounded by tree canopy brings nature and the seasons ever changing colors and light comfortably into the office.

Photography © Eric Taylor Photography, except top right, © MTFA Architecture



11 | AIA Northern Virginia Board Meeting
     4:30p, Alexandria. [info]

12 | Design Awards Committee Meeting
     12:00p, Alexandria. [info]

22 | AIA Virginia Art of Practice
     Centreville. [info]

23 | ARE Exam Series: Programming and Analysis
     10:00a, Arlington. [info]

27 | WIA + YAF Ballston Quarter Tour
     5:30p, Arlington. [info]

Upcoming Dates to Note:
  April 4 - Small Firm Roundtable
  April 6 - Safety Assessment Program (SAP) Training
  April 20-28 - Architecture Week

AIA Northern Virginia Calendar  |  AIA|DC Calendar  |  AIA Potomac Valley Calendar  |  AIA Virginia Calendar  |  Branch Museum Calendar

For additional information on any of these events, please contact the Chapter House at (703) 549-9747 or aianova@aianova.org. The Chapter House is located at 1101 Duke Street, Alexandria 22314.