3 Architectural Design Trends for 2017

Because of the incredible and far-from-incremental advances that we see in technology today, our architectural needs are changing. Homes are becoming more interactive with technology, as well as become implemented with all sorts of techy stuff. Alexa, Amazon’s assistant for your home, has seen smartphone applications, TV applications, third-party drones, security camera integration, and the list goes on and on. With this having been said, it is evident to us that the architecture and styles that we once loved are rapidly evolving into the next generation of design. Here are the top five models, within architecture, for 2017. (Get a sneak peak at home trends for 2018)

1. The Invisible Building
The freshest, or should I say greenest, idea on the architectural block today would have to be invisible homes. Green enthusiasts are always looking for ways to ‘de-fancy’ their homes. This is evident to us not only because of the uprise in popularity of so-called ‘tiny’ houses but also the minimization of the interiors as well.

However, architects and scientists are trying to go even further down this path by introducing simple and plain facades for houses. Not only this, but the production of mirror-like substances as well as LED facings are meant to hide or reflect the home to blend it into its surroundings. Of course, all of these are still prototypes and are not locked to 2017 alone, but is something that is becoming more and more popular in recent years, and especially in 2017.

2. Timber
Alright, I understand; you think this is a joke. Timber? I mean, haven’t houses been built out of wood and timber for hundreds, if not thousands, of years? The answer is yes, of course. However, laminated wood is being produced more and more, and is being used in places such as Finland and other European countries to create entire apartment blocks and homes.

You might be asking yourself something along the lines of, ‘Well, what exactly is laminated timber?’ The answer to your question would be that laminated wood is a scientifically processed and engineered wood that consists of multiple layers of fiber. These layers are light, cheap, easy to produce, and better for the environment. They are layered or covered in chemicals to reduce its potential flammability as well as to increase its potential to retain warmth as well as keep out the biting cold.

3. Exposed Brick Walls
What once was fashionable then became urban, and from there receded entirely for over half a decade. Until recently. Having exposed brick siding or walls, usually unpainted, has made a glorious comeback in today’s modern architectural society. It is somewhat associated with the hipster movement and can be seen in houses, cafes, offices, and everywhere. It is popular and can be seen everywhere when you are in Freeport or Seattle.

As you know, precursors to the future of architecture are usually defined by what is going around, what is popular, and what is being built in our generation. These are just some of the new architectural fancies that are widely recognized as well as popularized in today’s society, and you can bet your bottom dollar that it will not be going away anytime soon!

How to Become a Green Architect

The primary concept behind green architects, as well as green architecture, is to combine the pre-existing knowledge of architecture and mix it with the design as well as the use of green materials and methods to create buildings that minimize the potentially harmful effects on the environment. These self-proclaimed ‘green architects’ use their knowledge and economical awareness to use sustainable materials, acquired through green trade, as well as green energy, heating, and water solutions. They also equipped said buildings with green alternatives to disposing of waste, the conservation of water and electricity, and the usefulness and management of space to create ‘healthier’ (greener) options.

1. Career Requirements
There are a lot of career requirements for you to become not only an architect but a green architect as well. You need to have at least a Bachelors Degree, but more importantly, a Master’s in architecture. You need to have experience as well as a license that permits you to work in all states. You can procure these special architectural licenses and licenses through multiple sources, although the best and most legal route would be NCARB, known as the National Council of Architectural Registration Board.

2. Consider Your Degree Options
As previously stated, you are required to have a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree. These can only be acquired through the NAAB program. These levels, depending on your education as well as your educational background, are bound to last anywhere from one to five years. These programs contain all of the knowledge you will need to become a safe and legal architect. This includes studies in CAAD programs, i.e., programs that let you visualize, simulate, and design architectural structures within a program, as well as learning the properties as well as physics, math, and biology behind structural materials. These include wood, concrete, metal, and glass, to name a few of the simple ones.

3. Obtain A License
All states, whether they be in the U.S Minor Outlying or the Immediate States, require licenses for architects to legally operate. Being able to apply for and receive your license requires that you have the education and the degree to boot, as well as having completed an internship and having passed the ARE, also known as the Architect Registration Examination.

4. Earn Your Green Certification
This distinction is where it gets trickier than before. In addition to having to jump through hoops to get internships, education, licenses, and jobs, you need to earn your green certification. ‘GC’ is a way for you to practically and legally build structures that are green certified, which means using green materials sourced from green factories and suppliers, as well as using green facilities to design the architect in coalition with the green unions and workers union.

As you can see, there is a lot that goes into becoming an architect, and a green one at that; however, it is always worth it, because the world needs more dreamers and people who are willing to get work done. Not only this but having green architects means having safer working climates, as well as being more environmentally safe and conscious.


Essential Questions to Ask Your Architect

Before you get to decide on one architect, who will complete your building project, it is important to gather adequate information. This will involve asking a series of questions which you consider important. That way, you will find the right architect for the project. However, as you ask those questions it is important to keep in mind the specifics of your project.

Some of the top questions to ask include:

1. What experience does the architect have?
It is important to ask the architect what experience they have in doing projects that are similar to yours. If they have any, you can request to look at their portfolio and some of the projects that were completed. One should also consider asking if the architect is interested in handling the job you are presenting.

2. The architect’s fee?
From the beginning, it is important to know how much an architect will charge for the services rendered. This is very important if you are working on a budget. You should also ask the architect of how they arrive at the fee they will charge. Also, he should be able to answer questions about whether there will be additional charges, other than the architect’s fee, like an hourly rate.

3. Can the architect can handle the project?
Everyone would like to contract with an architect who can deliver. Therefore, you should ask whether they can be able to complete the project within the time that will be agreed. To add on that, it is important to ask what challenges they might likely encounter and if they can be able to work through them.
Knowing if the architect can complete the project on the given budget is also of the essence.

4. Would they like your participation in the project?
All architects work differently. While some prefer it when the clients are actively involved in the project, there are some who prefer clients to sit back and wait for the project to be completed. Therefore, after you give them all the necessary information they need, you can ask how they would like you to be involved.

5. What is their preferred mode of communication?
As the architect goes on with the project, they might want to update you on how things are or make consultations with you. Consequently, you should ask about the mode of communication they are comfortable with. While some prefer communicating through emails, others prefer phone calls or face to face communication. You should arrive at the best way through which you can communicate. Additionally, you can also get to agree on how frequent you will be communicating.

To conclude, there are many questions that people can ask an architect. Depending on how good the architect answers the questions, you will be able to comfortably choose the one you want to work with.

Types of Architecture

Architecture is a field full of new designs and creativity. It is the art of designing and constructing buildings and features. There are a lot of beautiful buildings locally and internationally. All these buildings fall into different architectural types. The following are the four main types of architecture that you should know. They are evident in almost every place you visit.

Residential Architecture
This type of architecture focuses on designing and constructing private buildings for homeowners. Residential architecture is the most common type in the residential areas in different cities and towns. As a homeowner, you can build a dream house by working closely with a residential architect. However, some residential areas are very strict with the house design. You need to compare and adhere to the local regulations about the acceptable residential designs. At the end of the project, you should be happy with the outcome as well as the local regulators.

Commercial Architecture
It also referred to as public architecture. It focuses on large and small scale businesses, shopping malls, government entities, libraries, hospitals, and government facilities like airports and train stations. There so many exquisite public buildings across the world. Some have become tourist attraction site because of the unique design that they portray. (Read – “What do Commercial Architects do?”)

The commercial architecture is more detailed as compared to the residential architecture because of the presence of many rules governing the construction. The importance of public architecture is that it defines a society. A well-designed public sector gives a remarkable experience.

Industrial Architecture
The industrial architecture includes sophisticated designs that will require a collaboration between an architect and a civil engineer. Such projects include construction of bridges, ports and hydroelectric dams among other technical projects. With the civil engineering and architectural knowledge, it can be difficult to fulfill the technical functions of such projects. It requires the right certifications and licensing to work on an industrial architecture project. Most of the times, the projects can take years to be completed.

Landscape Architecture
Landscape architecture focuses on gardens, lawns, parklands and other public outdoor areas like recreational spots. This type of architecture can construct both private and public recreational areas of gardens. The architectural activities will be revolving around plants, trees, and other natural features. To make sure that the environment is left intact, the architect design should understand the environmental and horticultural aspects. It can involve specialists from these fields study. A good landscape design will incorporate both living and non-living things in the project.

Best Schools for a Degree in Architecture

If you wish to do a degree in Architecture, it is important for you to enroll in one of the best institutions in the world. Since there are many higher-level schools that are offering this degree course, it could be challenging for you to select the best for you. Having carried out research, the following are the six best schools for a Degree in Architecture that you should consider.

1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
MIT has been named as the top best institute in the world for three consecutive years and is located in the United States. It has a high performance in the Architecture Department with a 96.5 points score. Also, the institution has high regards among employers for its excellence in academic performance.

2. The Bartlett School of Architecture
Bartlett is located in the United Kingdom and is part of the University College London. For the third year in a row, it has been ranked position two in the world for having the best School of Architecture. The advantage of this school is that it is located in one of the most diverse cities in the world.

3. Delft University of Technology
The Delft University of Technology is the third best institute offering Degree in Architecture and is located in Netherlands. It has all the necessary facilities for teaching students the designing skills and the school are equipped with competent teachers.

4. University of California, Berkeley
The University of California, Berkeley (USB) is located in the United States and offers architecture courses that feature all types of architecture. It is among the credited institutions that offer Degree in Architecture and has a high reputation among the employees.

5. ETH Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology)
ETH Zurich Institute is located in Switzerland. It is not only the best institute in Switzerland but also the fifth best institute in the world. Nearly 50% of students doing a Degree in Architecture are international students. This means that school is diverse and welcomes students from all parts of the country.

6. Manchester School of Architecture
This institution is based in the United Kingdom and has the best Department of Architecture. It is well equipped with all the facilities and tools that are necessary for learning architecture. It features over 200 courses in architecture and has a good academic reputation. It is one of the most recognized architecture institutions in the UK offering both undergraduate and postgraduate courses. It encourages innovation and creativity among the students by providing quality, high-tech resources.

History of Architectural Engineering

Architectural engineering is the application of principles and technology in engineering in building and construction. The history of architectural engineering is attached to Cal Polytechnic which was the first school in history to introduce the course. The polytechnic was opened in 1902 and included architectural engineering courses.

In 1933, learning architectural engineering was incorporated in the education program by President Julian McPhee. This addition had a positive impact on the course and has spread in almost all countries in the world. In 1940, the Polytechnic School was able to establish the Architectural Department. After the World War II, 1946, 55 students registered for the full Architectural Engineering course. Most of these students were male and were being taught by one teacher because there were a few graduates in architecture.

In 1950, 14 students were able to graduate from the Architectural Engineering class, and two of them became part of the department. This is the year that the department received great developments because of availability of more teachers. In 1963, Architectural Engineering incorporated laboratories for testing construction materials and soil samples. This was an additional step for the department since it was the only offering this course at that time.

The computer technology arrived, and the department incorporated the technology as part of learning. The department continued growing, and the number of students registering for the degree course was increasing annually. Today, the Polytechnic School graduates 50 to 60 students every year with an enrollment of 340 students.

It was from this school that the architectural engineering studies were incorporated into other universities, colleges, and polytechnics. The significance of architectural engineering made it an important course to consider because of the sophisticated constructions of dams, bridges, and airports. An architecture degree is a popular and a competitive course because it combines technology and science. These elements encourage students to have a clear understanding of cultural trends, technology, and social issues.

Most of the learning in architectural engineering is practical, and the departments are highly equipped with the necessary tools. Learning this course is easier during the 21st century as compared to when it started. Students learn in studios, they make designs and receive critics from the teachers. Students are now exposed to computer design tutorials and sufficient technology to make 3D designs among others.

Some countries give the graduates an architect license to allow them to practice what is learned. The future of Architectural Engineering depends on technological advancements and the need for construction more sophisticated features.

What to Look For in a Good Architect

It is true that if you desire your new residence to meet all your needs and to achieve your expectations, you will have to assign a trustworthy and pro architect to plan your residence. To pick a good architect is apparently not a difficult task to do if you do your homework. However, there are some crucial elements you should anticipate before you select the desired company.

One key point to consider when selecting a good architect is your freedom to include and contribute your advice, thoughts, and feelings on the design of your future home. The typical complication when you are working with an architect often concerns something as simple as style. It may be hard to align your taste with that of your architect, however, if you search, you’ll find a good match. At the end of the day, you’re the client and must call the shots, so long you have feasible requests.

Professional architects should have a couple of important qualities; the 1st one is, of course, is competence and mastery in the skill, the second is good communication. Firstly, you must learn in advance the qualifications (what are good qualifications?) of your potential architect not only by his/her credentials but by looking into past work experiences through any references you can get. Also, since time-line often plays a large factor in getting into your new home, you’ll need an architect who can communicate honestly their ability to get the work done by your desired goal. Many designers have a demanding schedule and shortage of time, and may not be able to deliver the work in the time-frame they might have misleadingly suggested. Another problem with poor communicators (or dishonest communicators) is that though they may have the time, you may have difficulty getting a straight answer as to all the expenses you should expect. So you may get overly excited about promises made to you, but learn that in the end, the work is truly not affordable. Thus, before you decide on your designer, acknowledge those couple critical points above. And, do your homework!

More on Experience…

A professional architect from known a well-known firm should have ample knowledge as well as good gut feelings in the planning area and appearance of your new space, including a good comprehension and depth of knowledge in each element of the structure. It means an architect should not only be able to create a 3D design or blueprint of the plan, but also must have foresight regarding the outcome of each room, and how they may affect your life practically. So, something to remember; not only should there be a concern for the external appearance of the house, but for the practicality and usability of its design; it is an equally, if not more important component for successful custom-homebuilding.

Further considerations, such as the thorough comprehension of building materials, temperature control, and exterior components such as land quality, vegetation and landscaping, sewage and water supply are other important aspects a professional architect should bear in mind.

So, an impressive home-building outcome is not a simple one. There are many things to consider when looking for the qualifications of a well-rounded and experienced architect. A good designer will provide quality blueprints along with a smooth plan of execution for all types and trends of homes in the modern age from minimalist, green and energy-efficient to large-scale luxury.

Good luck on your search!


Is An Architectural Degree Worth It?

Studying Architecture is an incredible thing. We all use it, see it and interact with it every day, whether it is in our homes or the spaces we work and play in. Great architecture drives passion, awe, and marvels in those that see it, and inspires those that use it, and brings security to those within it.

The architect must be a dedicated human being; He/she has to have many years of late night/early morning study sessions, with the one goal of finishing the course and getting a quality degree. In case you enjoy a good social life, do something easy – you won’t have time to socialize and fraternize while studying architecture! (What is it like to be an architectural student?)

Maybe that was slightly harsh, but at the end of the year, the architecture student body is made up of young people with a dangerous reliance on caffeine drinks, and tempers that may flare very easily. Seriously though, it is a trying period in any architects life. Don’t decide to study architecture lightly, it’s a serious commitment, and if you’re in, it’s all the way or not at all.

It’s a well-known fact among architects that the pay isn’t great. The only people who aren’t aware of this is everyone else. If you’re studying to be an architect because you think it will bring you a fortune, then you’re in for a shock. Architects enter their peak earning potential between the ages of fifty and sixty, up until then you will get a good, respectable wage, but it probably won’t compare to the lawyers, managers, and the doctors you serve.

Many architects are artists and choose the field simply because they love it. Architecture is about being fully and utterly absorbed in the built environment, and understanding the great masters and their masterpieces.

When it’s all said and done, architecture is a passionate industry, full of dedicated individuals with drive and ambition. If you want to be an architect, welcome aboard. If however you’re being drawn in like a moth to a lamp, turn away, save yourself – this career will swallow you up and spit you out before you know it, and you’ll owe a lot of money for the privilege.

A Career in Architecture

The job of an architect is not confined to the construction of corporate buildings they also design buildings for other purposes like hospitals, apartments, hotels, schools and commercial complexes etc.It is increasingly becoming a popular career in present days because of high pay and huge scopes involved in this profession.

By profession, an architect has to undertake studies on how to plan and design a structure, he/she should have a clear visual on that in the beginning. Students must be naturally inclined to go a long way in this field. Various courses at all levels are offered in architecture, from diploma to master’s programme. Though most architectural colleges in India offer eligibility of 10+2 with mathematics for undergraduate courses, yet students from all educational backgrounds can apply for courses in architecture. Some institutes offer entrance test as the method of selection of candidates in the field.

A B.Arch programme is of 5 years which can normally cost a student around 2 lakhs. Private institutes prescribe very high fees. Even diploma courses will cost a similar amount. Scholarships are largely offered in this field.

Job prospects are good in this field. Most of the jobs are available in government aided organizations like Public Works Department, the Archaeological Department, Ministry of Defense, Town and Country Planning Organization, National Institute of Urban Affairs, Departments of Railways etc. Otherwise, professionals can work in an independent manner by operating their own architectural firms.

Fresh Architects can start with 20,000-30000 salary range. Even after 2 years of experience, they can earn considerably higher up to 60,000. Architects having their own firms can earn always higher. Now after FDI in real estate the demand for architects is going to be higher as it will definitely attract huge money from foreign companies.

Some institutes to pursue this course-

  • MES College of Engineering, Kerala
  • SRM University Tamil Nadu
  • University of Petroleum & Energy Studies (UPES) is India’s First Energy Uttarakhand
  • Sunder Deep Group of Institutions Uttar Pradesh
  • Bharati Vidyapeeth’s College of Architecture(BVCOA), Navi Mumbai
  • M S Ramaiah Institute of Technology Karnataka
  • Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) Chennai
  • Birsa Agricultural University Bihar
  • Maharaja Engineering College Erode

An architect has to deliver works in accordance with client’s demands, he should be capable of maintaining a balance between his own imagination and the financial limits of clients.