Institute Previews: Design Front and Centre for AIA

The Australian Institute of Architects’ (AIA) Chapter expects a busy 2016 hosting national events and advising government on sustainability practices and design.

Last year was an incredibly exciting year and saw an explosion of activity in the local Australian Institute of Architects’ (AIA) Chapter, culminating with the huge success of the Festival of Architecture and Design (FAD) in October.  A relatively new kid on Adelaide’s festival block, FAD attracted 4,500 attendees to events held across a five–day program. This year we will continue to share stories with the community to better understand the valuable role of architects, designers and creative industries through a series of events, including Design Conversations, Architecture on Show, Hidden Sounds, and SPACE: Architecture Tours (8-9 October). FAD is set to return again in October 2017. The diversity of the profession will be celebrated once again in the annual SA Architecture Awards program launching this month with an exhibition of all entries and the Jury Presentation Day on Saturday, March 19, which is free and open to the public. Adelaide will host the National Architecture Conference (April 28 to 30) and a series of precinct tours are available to discover innovative developments at the Tonsley, Health & Biomedical, City West and Riverbank precincts, and Seppeltsfield Village in the Barossa. The SA Chapter will continue to lobby for greater professional design involvement in all aspects of the built environment. The government’s goals of a more compact, carbon–neutral city will require design excellence. Our advocacy will focus on planning reform underpinned by good design outcomes, improving business capabilities of practices locally and globally, improving procurement processes, and maintaining quality construction and compliance. The role of design is becoming an increasingly important element in the rejuvenation of our state’s economy. With our allied peak bodies, we will be demonstrating how design should be front and centre in the creation of new, high–value industries – good design is a business imperative, not just an aesthetic pursuit, and has great export potential. We often get questions about what does an architect really do and what they offer in terms of design quality, insurance and protection to their clients – the benefits of engaging a registered professional can often be underestimated. An excellent initiative launched at FAD last year by the Architectural Practice Board of SA was a series of beautifully produced short films interviewing fifteen local architects. Each tells their unique story about what architectural practice means to them and demonstrates the diversity of our profession. If you are thinking ‘What does an Architect do?’, then spend some time viewing the films online at www.archboardsa.org.au. David Homburg, SA Chapter President,Australian Institute of Architects To find out more about AIA events, visit architecture.com.au/sa

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