2015 AIBC Course Schedule

The 2015 course schedule is now available for viewing on the AIBC website. Please note, that online course registration will be commence on January 5, 2015. Registration is on a first-come first-served basis so please check out the schedule to note which courses you wish to take. Register early, as some of these sessions can fill up quickly.

Cause of Glasgow’s Mackintosh School Of Art Fire Revealed


Scottish Fire and Rescue in the aftermath of the fire. Image © Stewart Attwood

By James Taylor-Foster
November 27, 2014, Arch Daily

The Glasgow School of Art (GSA) have revealed the unfortunate series of events that led to the school’s iconic Mackintosh library, alongside a large collection of student work and archives, devastated in a fire in May of this year. According to BDOnline, who have spoken with Tom Inns (Director of the GSA), “final-year students were setting up their degree show projects in the basement and holes in some pre-built foam panels were being filled with the spray foam.”

The flammable gas used as a propellant in the canister was sucked into [a nearby] projector’s cooling fan, setting it alight. A foam panel directly behind the projector then quickly also caught light. “The flames quickly spread to timber panelling and through voids around the basement studio and then into the library two floors above and up through the rest of Mackintosh’s 1909 masterpiece.” To add insult to injury, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) reported that “a fire suppression system was in the latter stages of installation at the time of the fire but was not operational.”
Inns has stated that “it was an unfortunate accident and like any accident a whole series of events conspired against us to create the incident. It was associated with a particular piece of work and circumstances but no finger-pointing is going on.” The report also makes it clear how courageous the service people from Scottish Fire and Rescue were in protecting as much of the building as possible from further fire and water damage. Read more…

2015 City of Vancouver Heritage Awards

Nominations are now being accepted for the 32nd City of Vancouver Heritage Awards, which recognize the accomplishments of individuals and organizations that have furthered the goal of heritage conservation in the city.

Submission requirements:

Nominations may be submitted for:

  • Restoration, rehabilitation, adaptive re-use or continued maintenance of a heritage building or structure, a significant interior of a heritage building, or characteristic features of a heritage building or structure
  • Use of innovative engineering techniques or restoration/conservation methods in upgrading a heritage building or structure (including seismic upgrading)
  • Preservation of a heritage landscape
  • Advocacy by a group or individual in preserving a heritage site or increasing public awareness of heritage issues
  • A publication, education program, exhibit, or activity that promotes heritage conservation
  • Efforts in community or neighbourhood revitalization

Projects must have been completed within the past six years and not have previously received a City of Vancouver Heritage Award.

Deadline for nominations:
The deadline for nominations is  Monday, February 2, 2015, at 4:00 p.m.

Further details, along with the Nomination Information and Nomination Form, are available at:

RAIC call for submissions for Young Architect Award

By Staff of Canadian Architect
December 2, 2014, Canadian Architect

This award recognizes a young architect for excellence in design, leadership and/or service to the profession. It is intended that this award will inspire other young architects to become licensed and to strive for excellence in their work.

An architect registered in Canada who is an Architecture Canada | RAIC member and is 40 years or younger on the date of the deadline for the Call for Submissions.

Submissions received will be considered each year for three consecutive years, after which the submission will lapse. The submitter(s) may modify/revise the submission to bring it up to date. This does not apply to award recipients.

The submission deadline is January 15, 2015. Read more…

Architect building ‘infrastructure-free’ homes for poor Kenyans


By Kazuya Endo
December 2, 2014, The Japan Times

NAIROBI – A Japanese architect is promoting construction of “infrastructure-free” homes for people in a Nairobi slum.

“Kenya has ‘people power’ though it’s poor,” Izumi Sakata, 59, said. “Seeds cultivated in Japan should bear a lot of fruit there.”

Sakata is leading a project in Kenya to build homes in areas lacking water supply, sewers, electricity and other infrastructure. A 12-unit apartment building is due to be completed early next year in a suburb of the Kenyan capital, the project’s first major achievement.

While each 22-sq.-meter unit will have a kitchen and bathroom, the building features a water-free toilet system.

“As building and maintaining gigantic infrastructure entails enormous costs, the mechanism the modern age has relied on is collapsing,” said Sakata, citing “network-type sewage systems” as a typical example of high-cost infrastructure.

Sakata plans to create a “self-contained” home that converts human waste and kitchen garbage into manure, cleans rainwater and groundwater so it is drinkable, and generates electricity using recycled batteries.

The water-free toilet system, the first step toward Sakata’s goal, was developed by a Japanese housing equipment maker for the project. Read more…

Ryerson architecture students compete in South Korea

By Jack Hopkins
November 28, 2014, theEyeopener 

Ryerson’s Faculty of Architecture Science has a lot to brag about.

Four Ryerson architecture students have placed third place at a design competition in South Korea. This October, they travelled to Seoul to compete against other students from around the world. Their weeklong adventure ended with a $5,000 prize, split amongst them.

Their design entry into the competition was a huge gymnasium structure that measured 1500 square metres. It was made to hold a maximum capacity of 500 people.

John Han, one of the team members and the author of design, said that the plans for the structure were designed during the summer break.

“It was an international competition that was posted online, and myself and my friends were looking for a competition to do during the summer,” Han said. “It took us about two to three weeks of talking to the dean and people in our department to plan our trip.”

Despite the high number of competitors and its odds, the design team did remarkably well. Read more…