Volume 15, No. 6 - July 12, 2021
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BLAST - News and Notes from AIA Northern Virginia

Wiedemann Architects LLC
Mount Vernon View, by Wiedemann Architects LLC (more info)

In This Issue

Virginia Adopts the 2018 USBC

Exhibit at the Torpedo Factory

Fairfax County Design Awards

ABI Continues Its Rise

Notes, Awards + Opportunities

Featured Project: Mount Vernon View


Visit the AIA Northern Virginia Website

  This issue of BLAST is sponsored by Potomac Valley Brick and Shannon Mullins & Wright, LLP

Virginia Adopts the 2018 Uniform Statewide Building Code

On July 1, 2021, Virginia adopted the 2018 Uniform Statewide Building Code (USBC). This version will supersede the 2015 USBC, although permit applicants may choose to use the technical provisions of either the 2015 or 2018 USBC through June 30, 2022. Mixing provisions between the two editions of the code is prohibited. Beginning July 1, 2022, all applications and plans must meet the 2018 USBC requirements.

 The 2018 USBC will reference the codes listed below and include the Virginia-specific technical amendment:
  • 2018 International Building Code
  • 2018 International Residential Code
  • 2018 International Mechanical Code
  • 2018 International Fuel Gas Code
  • 2018 International Plumbing Code
  • 2017 National Electrical Code (NFPA 70)
  • 2018 International Energy Conservation Code
  • 2018 International Pool and Spa Code
  • 2018 International Existing Building Code
  • 2018 International Property Maintenance Code
Virginia versions of the codes which incorporate the Virginia-specific provisions can be found at the International Code Council (ICC) website.
  • 2018 Virginia Construction Code
  • 2018 Virginia Existing Building Code
  • 2018 Virginia Maintenance Code
  • 2018 Virginia Amusement Device Regulations
  • 2018 Virginia Industrialized Building Safety Regulations
  • 2018 Building and Related Laws Package
  • 2018 Virginia Certifications Standards (coming soon)
  • 2018 Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code (coming soon)
  • 2018 Virginia Manufactured Home Safety Regulations (coming soon)
Read the full Technical Bulletin here.

AIA Virginia Prize Entries on Display at the Torpedo Factory

 The 2021 AIA Virginia Student Prize Exhibition, organized by AIA Virginia and AIA Northern Virginia, is on display in the Torpedo Factory’s New Project Studio through August 8.

This year's competition was inspired by the Equal Justice Initiative's Community Remembrance Project and challenged students to design a pillar installation for the City of Alexandria's Market Square. Conducted simultaneously at Hampton University, University of Virginia, Virginia Tech, and the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center, the competition engaged students at all of the accredited schools of architecture in Virginia. Learn more about this annual challenge at https://www.aiava.org/2021-aia-virginia-prize-challenge-released/. The New Project Studio is located in Studio 9 on the First Floor of the Art Center, located at 105 N. Union Street in Alexandria. Details are available here.

Fairfax County's James M. Scott Exceptional Design Awards Due July 16

 Established in 1984, the Fairfax County Exceptional Design Awards recognize achievement in the total design of a building and its site. Any project completed in Fairfax County in the past five years is eligible for nomination by anyone. Submission categories include: Residential, Commercial, Commercial Interiors, Institutional, Recreational, Historical/Adaptive Re-use, Adaptive Re-use/Repurposing, Mixed Use, and Community Benefit Project. The design awards program is sponsored by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and administered by the County's Department of Planning and Development in cooperation with the County Architectural Review Board and AIA Northern Virginia. Projects submitted to our Design Awards Program that are located in Fairfax County are forwarded to this awards program. Submissions due July 16, by 5:00p. Details are available here.

Architecture Billings Continue Historic Rebound

Demand for design services from U.S. architecture firms continues to grow at a vigorous pace, according to a recent report today from The American Institute of Architects (AIA).

AIA's Architecture Billings Index (ABI) score for May rose to 58.5 compared to 57.9 in April (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). May’s ABI score is one of the highest in the index's 25-year history. During May, the new design contracts score reached its second consecutive record high with a score of 63.2, while new project inquiries also recorded a near-record high score at 69.2.

"Despite ballooning costs for construction materials and delivery delays, design activity is roaring back as more and more places reopen, said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. "However, concern over rising inflation and ongoing supply chain disruptions, as well as emerging labor shortages, could dampen the emerging construction recovery."

Key ABI highlights for May include:
  • Regional averages: Midwest (63.4); South (59.0); West (57.4); Northeast (54.2)
  • Sector index breakdown: commercial/industrial (60.6); multi-family residential (59.5); mixed practice (57.9); institutional (57.1)
  • Project inquiries index: 69.2
  • Design contracts index: 63.2
The regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average, whereas the national index, design contracts and inquiries are monthly numbers.

Visit AIA's website for more ABI information.

Changes to Fellowship Application

 The AIA College of Fellows made a few substantive changes to the Fellow Application:
  • Object 6 was cleaved from Object 2
    • Object Two includes Practice (Management) and Practice
    • Object Six includes Education, Research, and Literature
  • The Exhibit narrative requirements have been clarified to address three things:
    • What was the challenge presented to you?
    • What was your role?
    • What was the outcome?
  • Sponsors must complete the Intern Declaration and Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct affirmation and also may be subject to a background check.
The 2022 AIA Fellowship Sample Application is available here. Members requesting nomination by AIA Northern Virginia must submit FINAL draft applications to Kathryn T. Prigmore, FAIA, NOMAC, our Fellows Committee Chair, by August 21. Final nomination packages are due to AIA National in digital format by October 5.

Quick Notes...  

AIA Film Challenge 2021 ...   is open; submissions are due August 16 [info]... AIA Home Design Trends Survey ... this quarter focuses on Home and Property Design [info]...   Capital Area CRAN (Custom Residential Architect's Network) ...  is looking for AIA Northern Virginia members interested in joining the tri-chapter committee. Contact Janet Bloomberg, FAIA.... [contact]  

Awards and Opportunities

Due July 12AIA Virginia Gubernatorial Appointment Endorsement Requests
Due July 16Fairfax County's James M. Scott Exceptional Design Awards
AIA Honors Currently Open for Submission:
 Due July 27 – Architecture Firm Award
Due July 27 – Gold Medal
Due August 5 – Innovation Awards
Due August 5 – Interior Architecture
Due August 5 – Justice Facilities Review
Due August 5 – Regional & Urban Design
Due September 5 – Regional & Urban Design
Due September 14 – AIA/ACSA Topaz Medallion for Architectural Education
Due September 14 – AIA Associates Award
Due September 14 – AIA Award for Excellence in Public Architecture
Due September 14 – Collaborative Achievement
Due September 14 – Edward C. Kemper Award
Due September 14 – Honorary Membership
Due September 14 – Whitney M. Young Jr. Award
Due September 14 – Young Architect Award
Due October 5 – Fellowship
Due October 5 – Honorary Fellowship
Design News

Featured Partner

Focused on Happier, Healthier Living

 At Marvin, we're driven to imagine and create better ways of living. As people spend more time indoors, we recognize that our work isn't just about building better windows and doors - it's about opening new possibilities for how people live, work, and play inside a Marvin space. Since the day we opened our doors in 1912 as a family-owned and -operated cedar and lumber company, we've looked for ways to help people live happier, healthier lives.

Marvin experts are experienced in working with architects, builders, and homeowners to ensure your vision becomes a reality.

Contact: Aric Edwards at aricedwards@marvin.com or (540) 220-2937.

Job Board

As a benefit to our members, we maintain a Job Board of local postings. Pay us a visit for postings from: Moseley Architects; LeMay Erickson Willcox Architects; O’Brien & Keane; MW Architects; George Mason University, Department of Capital Strategy and Planning; MTFA Architecture; and MODE4 Architecture.

AIA Northern Virginia Chapter members may post entries free of charge as a benefit of membership. Non-members are billed at a rate of $75 for each entry. We also maintain a resume library and share resumes with firms that are hiring. So please send us your resume to us at aianova@aianova.org.

Featured Project

Mount Vernon View
Wiedemann Architects LLC
Bryans Road, MD

 This project is a new home in southern Maryland on the Potomac River located directly across from Mount Vernon and surrounded by undisturbed federal parkland. The challenge of the project was to design a home that took advantage of the unique waterfront site, while respecting the historic view shed. The client wanted to enjoy the river view, while Mount Vernon preferred to have the home merge with the natural landscape.

The L-shaped plan steps back from the river behind mature trees, while shaping an outdoor space that engages the sweep of the river. A view of Mount Vernon is enjoyed on the approach to the home and from most interior spaces. The design limits the amount of glazing facing the river to that of the original one-story home and screens the upper portion with a screened porch. Cedar shingles merge with the trees and native stone anchors the home to its unique site.

The design required compliance with Critical Area regulations and historic preservation approval, in consultation with Mount Vernon. The National Park Service approved the planting of native trees, with the goal of maintaining the woodland character of the property. The design embraces a sustainable agenda including the donation of the dismantled former home for reuse and the use of recycled materials on the interior. The compact design efficiently addresses the program, while accommodating large family gatherings. A high-efficiency HVAC system, insulation, all LED lighting, natural ventilation, and insulated glazing create a highly energy efficient home.

Photography © Anice Hoachlander, Hoachlander Davis Photography



12 | AIA Northern Virginia Board Meeting
     4:30p. [info]

12 | WIA Committee Meeting
     6:00p. [info]

13 | Incorporating the Forgotten Thermal Benefits of Brick
     12:00p. [info]

17 | ARE Exam Series: Construction and Evaluation
     10:00p. [info]

19 | J.E.D.I. IRL
     12:00p. [info]

19 | Committee Chairs Planning Meeting
     5:00p. [info]

21 | Drainage + Drying in the Exterior Wall
     12:00p. [info]

22 | CAE Meeting (Committee on Architecture in Education)
     12:00p. [info]

22 | Unique Brick Architecture
     12:00p. [info]

23 | Design Awards Committee Meeting
     12:30p. [info]

29 | AIA Conference on Architecture 2021 [info]

Upcoming Dates to Note:
  August 4 - AIA Virginia’s Art of Practice
  August 19 - AIA Conference on Architecture 2021
  August 19 - AIA Northern Virginia Design Awards Celebration

Combined Virginia / West Virginia Event Calendar
Now you can find all the webinars and architecture events in the region in one place. AIA chapters across Virginia and West Virginia are contributing to a combined calendar on the Inform Magazine site.

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 aianova@aianova.org. The Chapter House is located at 1101 Duke Street, Alexandria 22314.