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RIBA signs Memorandum of Understanding with RIBA-USA Date: 23 July 2013
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with RIBA-USA.
The relationship between the RIBA and RIBA-USA, an international community of the RIBA operation in the USA, has grown organically over nearly 18 years.
The signed Memorandum of Understanding reflects the close collaboration and partnership, and provides shared aims and principles.
RIBA-USA was founded by Tim Clark who launched its website in 1996, conducted polls to encourage participation and established its Board. Derek Bradford succeeded him in 2005 and Jonathan Wimpenny in 2009. It is now formally part of the network of RIBA communities from all over the world, including the UK branches. These networks undertake activities that promote architecture and support architects working in partnership with local members, the RIBA’s global community of members and co-professionals. RIBA-USA will benefit from use of the RIBA knowledge base, research, programmes and collections, and for grants to support their activities.
Speaking about the agreement, RIBA President Angela Brady said:
'The RIBA welcomes and encourages members in communities that enhance and develop the RIBA’s presence and help achieve its strategic aims in an international territory.
Our agreement with RIBA-USA formalises a long and successful relationship. This is an exciting opportunity to further develop RIBA membership in the USA and advance the RIBA’s purpose of championing better buildings, communities and the environment through architecture and our members.'
Jonathan Wimpenny, President RIBA-USA Board of Trustees, added:
'The benefits of this partnership are far reaching. RIBA now benefits from the many RIBA-USA competitions, lectures, exhibitions as well as providing a local platform for essential fundraising. Beyond this, collaboration with the AIA has resulted in a far-reaching international Continuing Education agreement (1997) and RIBA-USA is now regarded by UKTI as an essential network ready to assist in their various programmes across the United States. Portfolio reviews and guidance are also welcomed by UK students where RIBA-USA chapters give invaluable local advice, linking them to the many career opportunities in the United States.'
Press office contact:
T: +44 (0)207 580 5533
BRITISH CONSULATE RECEPTION (Go to the events page to read more)
Sheraton Hotel Tower Court D Denver Colorado
Wednesday19th June 2013
Please view the current events for the agenda.
Click here to view PRESS RELEASE: Memorandum of Understanding
Graham Downes RIBA AIA (1957 – 2013) was perhaps one the of the most colorful architect personalities in San Diego, with a successful practice portfolio of glitzy high-profile projects. He died Sunday April 21, as a result of injuries sustained in an assault outside his home a few days earlier. A career-long member of RIBA, Graham was well known for his lush, yet ultra-modern designs and his overriding commitment to urban renewal, often in areas few others dared to risk.
Originally from Durban South Africa, Graham obtained his degree in architecture at the University of Natal, all the while playing rugby professionally for KwaZulu-Natal. After working in London Graham moved to California in 1986 where he worked in architecture by day and continued to play rugby evenings and weekends, eventually representing the US at the 1987 and 1991 Rugby World Cup.
During the late 80's and early 90's I worked together with Graham at the now-defunct firm of City Design. The firm was a melting pot of eclectic and creative hubris, sitting on the edge of what was then a run-down, downtown, no-go area. It seemed to suite Graham perfectly. It was there that I first observed his incredible artistic talents, as well as his passion for design and, quite frankly, hard work. He was a veritable powerhouse of energy and creativity. At the same time, his capacity for work was at least equaled by his love of play. Graham had a huge circle of friends and acquaintances. I can hardly ever remember Graham without a smile on his face, drink in hand and a pretty girl on his arm.
After City Design folded in 1994 Graham formed his own firm in the barrio, Graham Downs Architecture which quickly grew into a multi-million dollar 30 person firm. Unsatisfied with the pace and direction of urban renewal in San Diego, he started his own development company devoted to revitalizing urban neighborhoods. To this he eventually added a related group of companies, which he branded under his 'Blokhaus' moniker, an Afrikaans take on Bauhaus. His body of work was truly stellar, and I was always proud and intrigued by each of his new creations as it landed on the front page of some glossy magazine. Work included Heat Hotel at Lake Havasu, Tower 23 Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel San Diego, Palomar Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel Nuevo Vallarta, the Padre Hotel renovation in Bakersfield and many incredible restaurants, clubs and retail stores, all in his vibrant and sexy minimalist style.
Graham was big in every sense of the word; in size; the wider community; design circles; and socially. He often flew his own plane to jobsites around California, Nevada and Arizona. Graham’s publicist, Danielle Gano said in a newspaper report “Downes was known as an exciting and adventurous man who did no less than devour life. There were no half-measures in his world and those who knew him socially surely have a memorable story to tell in which he is invariably at the center, but his heart's passion was with the design practice he toiled so hard to create and grow”. I couldn’t agree more. In passing, Graham, a young 56 years of age, leaves a big void for many people in this part of the world, and I for one will miss him immensely.
Niall Saunders RIBA, AIA
Friday, 5th April
ASF Energy Forum, Click here for the pdf.
London Vauxhall – The Missing Link
International Design Ideas Competition
RIBA Competitions are delighted to announce details of an exciting new competition launching in January 2013.
The Vauxhall area of London is at the heart of an area of huge new opportunity and Vauxhall One, the new Business Improvement District (BID) for Vauxhall are seeking design ideas to improve and enhance the public realm in Vauxhall, providing the ‘Missing Link’ between the New US Embassy Quarter and London’s South Bank.
The competition is open to registered architects, landscape architects, urban designers and students of these disciplines worldwide. As with the New York ‘High Line’ competition multi-disciplinary design teams are encouraged.
It is the intention that all entries received for the competition will be exhibited during April 2013 at both the Garden Museum and an outdoor cultural trail through the parks and railway arches of Vauxhall.
Chris Law, Public Realm and Development Director at Vauxhall One said:
“Vauxhall is changing fast and the public realm is critical. We want to create sustainable green links through the district and on to the river Thames. We want to connect the New American Embassy to London’s South Bank with new green and cultural trails, which tell the story of the area’s rich and colourful past in the architectural and landscape language of the Twenty First Century. We’re looking for creative design innovation.”
The competition will launch on 14 January 2013 when the competition website
www.ribacompetitions.com/vauxhallthemissinglink will go live. The closing date for Stage 1
submissions is 12 March 2013.
AIAOC and the Royal Institute of British Architects
Green Buildings & Birds
Green Building initiatives tend to focus on energy and material resources; however features of building design can also impact biodiversity. An issue of growing concern is the large number bird fatalities caused by glass. Recent efforts, such as San Francisco's Standards for Bird-Safe Buildings, and a LEED pilot credit, "Bird Collision Deterrence", are designed to reduce the threat of glass in the built environment. Please join the AIAOC and RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects), for an informative discussion of this topic.
Presenter:Dr. James Karl Fischer PhD ,RIBA, AIA
Click here for more info.
AN IDEAL GARDEN CITY
An in-depth visit to the 20th century’s finest planned city
With Louise Nicholson and Candia Lutyens
Saturday March 9 – Saturday March 16, 2013
Read more on the events page
Philip Fraser Andrews
It is with deep regret that we announce the passing of our Treasurer Philip Fraser Andrews who suffered a heart attack earlier this month while travelling in South America.
Philip was born in the English Midlands and educated at Canterbury School of Architecture where he graduated with distinction.
Philip joined the Board of RIBA-USA in 2006 as representative of the California Chapter and was elected its Treasurer in 2010. While Vice President and Managing Principal of MCG in Pasadena, Philip presided over at the first stage awards ceremony for the RIBA-supported competition “Building a Sustainable World” at the A+D Museum in Los Angeles in June 2007. There are several great photographs of him on our website handing out certificates.
He was a warm and generous colleague who was dedicated to making the best things in life actually happen, which they very often did around Philip, both in the professional and private spheres. His many talents included acting and writing and at the time of his passing he was well into a totally new career as a screenplay author.
Philip will be sorely missed by us all and our only comfort is that, having left us while on a dream-come-true adventure holiday in the Amazon Rainforest, he will have concluded his earthly duties on a very happy note indeed.
He is survived by his mother, Elise a twin sister, Julia and his inspiring partner, Leo.
Philip’s positive attitude to life is perhaps best summed up by his email signature:-
“The optimist proclaims that we live in the best of all possible worlds, and the pessimist fears this is true”.
TIm Clark June 16th 2012
2012 RIBA-USA Reception at the Ambassador’s Residence – Washington DC
Sir Peter Westmacott KCMG LVO welcomes
RIBA-USA members and their guests - Click here to see more images
2012 RIBA-USA AGM– Washington DC
To read more on the AGM click here.
RIBA-USA AGM AND SYMPOSIUM
Following RIBA-USA AGM and symposium at the AIA Convention in Washington DC, RIBA President Stops over in NYC .
Invited by Rick Bell (Center for Architecture NY), Angela Brady formed part of a panel discussion “Fit World: Encouraging Active Design Across the Globe” at New York’s Center for Architecture on La Guardia Place. The international panel included Kathryn Firth, MAUD, Chief of Design, London Legacy Development Corporation
Billie Giles-Corti, Director, McCaughey Centre, University of Melbourne Peter McCue, Manager, Premier's Council for Active Living NSW (Sydney, Australia)and was moderated by Jane E Brody NY Columnist
Left: Angela Brady Right: Angela with David Burney
Left: Jonathan Wimpenny, Mary Burke & Angela Brady Right: Audience
LATEST STUDENTS AND IMMIGRATION NEWS
Click here to go to the students and internship page for the latest news articles and information on immigration in the United States.
RIBA-USA PROGRAM – WASHINGTON DC - 2012
RIBA-USA Annual General Meeting
Thursday, May 17th 2012 at 10.00am
Venue: The Schnader Boardroom, Suite 550, Victor Building, 750 9th Street, NW
RIBA-USA International Practice:
“Building Global Connectivity through Local Synergy”
Thursday, May 17th 2012
Venue: AIA Convention Hall at 2.00 – 3.30pm. Tickets available through the AIA www.aia.org
2.00 pm Welcome and Introduction
Moderator Jonathan B. Wimpenny, AIA RIBA, RIBA-USA President
2.10 pm “International Practice”
Keynote Speaker Angela Brady, RIBA, 2011-2013 RIBA President
2.25 pm “BRIC, BIM and Education in a GlobalArena”
International Practice Joseph G. Burns. FAIA RIBA, RIBA-USA Chicago
2.40pm “Green Strategy, Local Action”
International Practice Dr Raj Barr-Kumar, FAIA RIBA, 1997 AIA National President,
Chair, RIBA-USA Washington DC
2.55 pm “Professional Licenses, Entity Requirements, Local Ownership, Management Requirements and Transfer of Currency”
International Practice Cynthia Fischer, Esq., AIA Allied member, Hon Sec RIBA-USA
3.10 – 3.30 pm International Panel Q & A
Evening Reception for Angela Brady, President RIBA:
Venue: The UK Ambassador’s Residence, the British Embassy 3100 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20008
Thursday, May 17th 2012 – 6.00 – 8.30pm (Invitation only)
By kind permission of the British Ambassador and Lady Westmacott
© RIBA Library Drawings and Archives Collection
The British Ambassador’s Residence in Washington, built in 1928, was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens (1869 -1944) to resemble an English Country Manor House. This drawing (showing elevation, plan and sections of the S W front) was kindly donated to the RIBA by the British Ambassador to the United States in October 2006. It is now included in the RIBA Library Drawings and Archives Collection; considered the most comprehensive architectural archive in the world. www.ribapix.com
“Shaping London” - An RIBA Event at the NY Consulate
Over 100 people attended an RIBA event on January 25th hosted by Danny Lopez, the New York Consulate General, at his penthouse residence close to the United Nations. Introduced by Stephen Philips (Chair British Architectural Trust) it gave Harry Rich (RIBA Chief Exec) the opportunity to explain the importance of the RIBA Drawings Collection and for Irena Murray (Curator)to discuss how the collection has now been thoroughly catalogued. NY architect, Donald Clinton AIA MRAIC, spoke on the topic of his early apprenticeship in the office of Denys Lasdun at the time of the design and construction of the National Theatre and welcomed this RIBA initiative to engage AIA Members who included Rick Bell FAIA, Exec Director of the NY Center for Architecture) and Joseph Aliotta (AIA NY President).
NY Consulate General, Danny Lopez,
welcoming RIBA to New York
Harry Rich (RIBA Chief Exec) and
Irena Murray (RIBA Drawings Collection Curator)
(l-r) Joseph J. Aliotta, AIA, President, AIA New York Chapter;
Lynn Osmond, President, Chicago Architecture Foundation;
Mary W. Rowe, Vice President, Municipal Art Society;
Rick Bell, FAIA, FRSA, Executive Director, AIA New York Chapter.
BRITISH EMBASSY EVENT IN TOKYO
James Karl Fischer PhD (RIBA-USA Trustee and RIBA Council Member), Angela Brady (RIBA President) and Dr. Goh Chong Chia (UIA Treasurer, RIBA Council Member, RIBA Singapore President) enjoying an evening at the British Embassy in Tokyo during this year's UIA Conference.
As practice becomes more fluid, member driven organizations such as the RIBA-USA and RIBA Singapore are gaining a presence on the world architectural scene.The UIA Conference garnered tremendous participation from a wide variety of contexts, with many programs tackling significant issues in the field.
For a detailed description of the UIA and its support systems, visit: www.uia2011tokyo.com/en/
CHINESE DELEGATION VISITS NEW YORK
Jonathan Wimpenny RIBA-USA (center) met Professor Xiaodi Zhou of the School of Architecture, Southeast University, Nanjing (left of center with camera in hand) and Gao Hui, Planning Director of the Taiyuan Planning & Research Center, Shanxi (right of center, viewing NYC through rose tinted glasses!) to welcome both and their student delegation to the United States. While touring the landmark area of Washington Square and Greenwich Village, they discussed the architectural program at Nanjing University, the previous RIBA-USA delegation to China and the continuing accord of architectural education spearheaded by Tim Clark (RIBA-USA founder). Accompanying them was Zhang Jianwei who is currently a visiting scholar and PhD candidate at the University of Pennsylvania. We wish them all ‘lucky-travel-wishes’ as they continue their US tour north to Harvard Graduate School and Boston.
GULF MEETING OF RIBA-USA TRUSTEES AND FRIENDS FROM THE REGION
While RIBA-USA members braced for winter weather, RIBA-USA Trustees, Tim Clark and Cynthia Fischer sought sunnier climes at their recent November meeting with engineers and architects in Dubai. Tim Clark Reports - The meeting was prompted by the presence of RIBA-USA Trustee, Cynthia Fischer in Dubai where she was giving a paper at the International Bar Association Annual Conference during the same week that TC was in nearby Abu Dhabi, on a routine monthly visit to his head office from his current base in Doha. The opportunity to enjoy a networking lunch proved irresistible and especially benefitted from the availability of two major figures from the GCC architectural profession who were able to join in. Discussions ranged from the future of the role of women in the GCC professions to the agenda for RIBA-USA's presentation at the 2012 AIA National Convention in Washington DC on Global Networking and Local Synergy.
LAUNCH OF “THIS IS GREAT BRITAIN”
David Cameron was in New York the penultimate week of September and attended the reception in the Wall Street Banqueting Hall for the PR launch of “This is GREAT Britain”. Introduced by NY Mayor Mike Bloomberg, the Prime Minister said that the UK would put on “the greatest show on earth” next year when the London Olympics coincides with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, and said he was sending out a message “loud and proud” that the world is invited.
RIBA-USA NEW ORLEANS AGM 2011. Click here to read more about the events...
Visit to Make It right Lower Ninth Ward Images Click here then scroll down...
A Reflection On New Orleans from Andrew Golland Click here to read his diary...
1. Two gutter punks in Jackson Square.
2. Oyster bar consultant.
3. Watching TV at the coffee bar of the Royal Sonesta Hotel on Bourbon St.
4. With Juan to the airport.
5. On the Gator Swamp Boat
6. The Architectural Visitation.
RIBA-USA AGM Events List
09-AM RIBA-USA Annual General Meeting Click here for the AGM Minutes
10-AM Keep it legal, protected and profitable – RIBA-USA symposium
11-AM Birds and Architecture
3-PM Llght from above, past present and future
7-PM to 10-PM Bird Safe Architecture Fundraiser
Thanks to the events platinum sponsors...
RIBA COUNCIL ELECTION RESULTS
Dr James Karl Fischer (US Region) wins second term
with Nela De Zoysa (Sri Lanka)
Dr. James Karl Fischer -- RIBA-USA members welcomed the news of this year’s RIBA Elections for Council when they heard this week that Dr James Karl Fischer will be representing overseas members on Council for a second term. Indefatigable and persistent, James has been a vanguard for RIBA-USA interests and members worldwide.
Nela De Zoysa won her first term as the second overseas representative on council. As speaker at the RIBA-USA Annual General Meeting in New Orleans this year, she expressed her firm commitment to voicing the interests of RIBA members abroad. Nela is from Colombo, Sri Lanka and her vast experience covers the areas of Design, Design Development and Construction Management, and ranges from Banks, Educational Buildings to Commercial Complexes, Hotels, Sport Complexes, Personalized Housing, Projects of Renovation and Conservation and Interior Design.
RIBA-USA* MISSION STATEMENT
There are some 700 architects in the USA with professional
links to the UK. Over 400 of these are members of the Royal
Institute of British Architects.
RIBA-USA represents the professional, educational and regional interests of the RIBA-USA Chapters and members of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) resident in the United States of America.
RIBA-USA seeks to:
Establish itself among the prominent and sought-after professional bodies in the United States to represent the broad mandate of architecture as a profession and to strengthen the existing collaboration and joint initiatives with the American Institute of Architects
Educate the public about the impact and relevance of the work of RIBA-USA members, the field of architecture and good design, serving society’s needs for resilient and sustainable environments which help to improve the quality of life
Promote professional excellence, a diverse membership, a belief in continuing education and the maintenance of professional standards, programs, conferences and competitions.
Encourage and support all students seeking to enter the profession.
* RIBA-USA Inc is a US registered 501(c)(3) tax exempt Non-Profit Corporation
Please help us keep your details up to date with your
local US chapter by emailing
MORE ABOUT RIBA-USA
Typically our members have trained at UK recognized schools
of architecture. Many are US citizens, while others have become
citizens, and we live in all the 50 US States. RIBA-USA was
founded to respond to our special professional interests and
provides an important link between RIBA in London and the
bustle of professional life in the US. Over 100 RIBAs live
along the US West Coast, so with RIBA support, the California
Chapter was founded in 1995 and ran a successful events program
at UCLA, the Pacific Design Center and The J Paul Getty Center.
In 1997, after electing Tim Clark to coordinate, we launched RIBA-USA itself and conducted a national
survey. The survey revealed us to be an impetuous but mature
body of professionals, most of whom have at least 10 years
post registration experience. Since that survey, and the subsequent
launch of our website members became increasingly in touch
with one another and we now have a Board, with representation
from each Chapter and a growing caucus of new Chapters. In
1997, following our first national mailing, the New York Chapter
was founded and has enabled us to provide an imaginative forum
to advance the interests of members, British Trade organizations
and firms. May 8th 2003 marks the date of a famous launch
for our New England Chapter, followed shortly after by another
in Chicago to serve the needs of the "North Central" Region
of the USA, otherwise affectionately known as the Mid-West.
We work closely with AIA, and have a lot in common with the
AIA UK Chapter, whose establishment in 1994 first inspired
us to start up in Los Angeles. We are working hard in the
background of ongoing negotiations to revive mutual recognition
on licensing between the US and EU and we announced the signing
of a new bilateral commitment between NCARB and the EU in
November 2005. To be effective in our position on this and
other professional issues we need to involve members everywhere
in the US. Check out our plan for US representation and other
interesting statistics on our national survey page.
RIBA-USA assists its Chapters provide and share services to
RIBA members in the USA. Since 1998 RIBA membership in the
US has grown by 10% and we look forward to a further upsurge
and the seeding of more US Chapters, each with its unique
geographical identity, in the coming months and years. All
RIBA members are automatically members of RIBA-USA, and others
may join by special arrangement. Please contact
for further details. Our mission is to make diversity the
hallmark of our inclusive professional community, toward our
ultimate goal of mobilizing excellence.
Indeed it is only through the contribution of individual RIBA
members from diverse backgrounds that we continue to hold
a place at the cutting edge of the world's architectural profession.
We have a great future ahead of us, particularly we who are
privileged to be able to enjoy the partnership and synergy
of professional life that is particular to the USA.
In 2009, the RIBA-USA Board adopted Presiding
Chair-elect, Jonathan Wimpenny
as Presiding Chair of RIBA-USA.
Please visit the Gibbs site by clicking on the image
below to see the competitions entries for the RIBA-USA Building
a Sustainable World