Architects need to consider changing their profession

Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby teak » Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:35 am

On the main topic:

If "changing their profession" just means each architect having to consider
whether or not to stay in the same occupation or not , then the answer is
clear.
Young ones will be forced to emigrate.
35-50 will have to really work hard and imaginatively to make a living to
clear their debts and raise their kids.
And over-50s will scrap it out for the remaining tasty jobs -- a sort of
professional cannibalism; or else do something else.

If "changing their profession" means looking at things not simply as members
of one profession subservient to the swings of a much larger sector that is
run and regulated by others, but as vital stakeholders in a property/building
sector that has a huge impact on every citizen's life -- then I'd say DO IT .

Yet my experience is that architects are very cautious of expressing strong
committed views on this very sector that so affects them.
Not just to avoid missing work from some slob contractors taking offence from
their opinions and suggestions on regulating the sector.
But so as not to lose this sort of slow bicycle race that seems to exist between
architects when real opinions ought be offered and real criticism to be voiced.

Change must come.
And it will come to the world of development and construction.
It will have obvious benefits to the public and to many people of moderate ambitions
employed within the sector.
It is the norm in Germany and other EU countries.
But -- there is also a downside to it for those seeking more profit, more
freedom in how they work, more money and more social prominence, as comes
to people involved in a sector that rewards speculators.
No one looking at Ireland in the last 12 years can say that these things hold no
attraction for people in this country.
Now that we've seen what the consequences are, it will be a test of us all to
see if we can sensibly regulate the sector that somehow seems to attract the
greed in most of us.
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Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby onq » Tue Dec 28, 2010 6:50 am

PVC King wrote:The Pembroke and Gardiner Estates were developed plot by plot in terraces on building leases; i.e. you had the right to build a house the design of which was at the absolute discretion of the landlord. Very bad example.


A bad example for you perhaps, not for me.
Your summary of the characteristics of the Georgian house encompasses many of the characteristics of once off housing.


Are you going to deal with the market implications of undermining demand for the Nama landbank or keep spinning spuriously?


I have pointed out that without once off and self build houses the housing market would collapse even more.
Once off houses are what is keeping what's left of the construction sector going.
You appear to have ignored this "market implication".

You cannot ignore a salient point and then accuse me of spinning.

No-one wants to buy the NAMA landbank now and NAMA shouldn't be selling it now.
The buyers have no money and NAMA will only realise a tithe of the value of the land.

If NAMA wants to make some of the land it holds available to once off of self builders, that's fine by me.
If they want to massively tax the people who made windfall profits on the sales of land - that's fine by me.
If NAMA wants to target new amenities, schools and shops to support isolated estates - that's also fine by me.

Low interest rate mortgages for 10 years, targeted retrofit grants for carbon neutral/sustainable features, all sound good to me.

Expecting to legislate your way out of this mess and ignore market realities is just not going to work.
Expecting someone to buy sites of land from NAMA in locations that have no amenities seems dangerously naive.
And to suggest that allowing people to exercise their rights under the planning process undermines NAMA is nonsense.
Instead it behoves NAMA to look at each site of land and see what they can do to make it more appealing to the market.

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Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby onq » Tue Dec 28, 2010 7:10 am

teak wrote:On the main topic:

If "changing their profession" just means each architect having to consider
whether or not to stay in the same occupation or not , then the answer is
clear.
Young ones will be forced to emigrate.
35-50 will have to really work hard and imaginatively to make a living to
clear their debts and raise their kids.
And over-50s will scrap it out for the remaining tasty jobs -- a sort of
professional cannibalism; or else do something else.

If "changing their profession" means looking at things not simply as members
of one profession subservient to the swings of a much larger sector that is
run and regulated by others, but as vital stakeholders in a property/building
sector that has a huge impact on every citizen's life -- then I'd say DO IT .

Yet my experience is that architects are very cautious of expressing strong
committed views on this very sector that so affects them.
Not just to avoid missing work from some slob contractors taking offence from
their opinions and suggestions on regulating the sector.
But so as not to lose this sort of slow bicycle race that seems to exist between
architects when real opinions ought be offered and real criticism to be voiced.

Change must come.
And it will come to the world of development and construction.
It will have obvious benefits to the public and to many people of moderate ambitions
employed within the sector.
It is the norm in Germany and other EU countries.
But -- there is also a downside to it for those seeking more profit, more
freedom in how they work, more money and more social prominence, as comes
to people involved in a sector that rewards speculators.
No one looking at Ireland in the last 12 years can say that these things hold no
attraction for people in this country.
Now that we've seen what the consequences are, it will be a test of us all to
see if we can sensibly regulate the sector that somehow seems to attract the
greed in most of us.



The reason the built environment is so poor is that "design" is not taught in the schools any longer - modernism is, a flat rejection of what has gone before, throwing thousands of years of design into the dustbin of history.
There is no sense of accord in terms of what the public expects from architecture and no debate on matters of taste.
Endless rows of flat roofed square boxes with sedan grass roofs currently masquerade as "modern design".
Dublin City cannot even agree to maintain its 6 storey average heights now - they're talking about a beetling 16 storeys.

In short there is no clear leadership in terms of design or the built environment.
Equally there is no mandatory requirement to appoint an architect to design anything.
It seems quite clear that the profession has to be put on a statutory footing or nothign will progress.

ONQ.
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Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby onq » Tue Dec 28, 2010 7:11 am

teak wrote:On the main topic:

If "changing their profession" just means each architect having to consider
whether or not to stay in the same occupation or not , then the answer is
clear.
Young ones will be forced to emigrate.
35-50 will have to really work hard and imaginatively to make a living to
clear their debts and raise their kids.
And over-50s will scrap it out for the remaining tasty jobs -- a sort of
professional cannibalism; or else do something else.

If "changing their profession" means looking at things not simply as members
of one profession subservient to the swings of a much larger sector that is
run and regulated by others, but as vital stakeholders in a property/building
sector that has a huge impact on every citizen's life -- then I'd say DO IT .

Yet my experience is that architects are very cautious of expressing strong
committed views on this very sector that so affects them.
Not just to avoid missing work from some slob contractors taking offence from
their opinions and suggestions on regulating the sector.
But so as not to lose this sort of slow bicycle race that seems to exist between
architects when real opinions ought be offered and real criticism to be voiced.

Change must come.
And it will come to the world of development and construction.
It will have obvious benefits to the public and to many people of moderate ambitions
employed within the sector.
It is the norm in Germany and other EU countries.
But -- there is also a downside to it for those seeking more profit, more
freedom in how they work, more money and more social prominence, as comes
to people involved in a sector that rewards speculators.
No one looking at Ireland in the last 12 years can say that these things hold no
attraction for people in this country.
Now that we've seen what the consequences are, it will be a test of us all to
see if we can sensibly regulate the sector that somehow seems to attract the
greed in most of us.



The reason the built environment is so poor is that "design" is not taught in the schools any longer - modernism is, a flat rejection of what has gone before, consigning thousands of years of precedent into the dustbin of history.
There is no sense of accord in terms of what the public expects from architecture and no debate on matters of taste.
Endless rows of flat roofed square boxes with sedan grass roofs currently masquerade as "modern design".
Dublin City cannot even agree to maintain its 6 storey average heights now - they're talking about a beetling 16 storeys.

In short there is no clear leadership in terms of design or the built environment.
Equally there is no mandatory requirement to appoint an architect to design anything.
It seems quite clear that the profession has to be put on a statutory footing or nothing will progress.
And we urgently need some empirical studies done re the Urban form we wish to live in - or we'll make a bags of it.

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Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby PVC King » Tue Dec 28, 2010 11:20 am

A bad example for you perhaps, not for me.
Your summary of the characteristics of the Georgian house encompasses many of the characteristics of once off housing.



A one off house cannot by definition form part of a terrace; a one off house is never subject to superior consent in terms of design; no Georgian Square was ever derided for poor design quality.


I have pointed out that without once off and self build houses the housing market would collapse even more.
Once off houses are what is keeping what's left of the construction sector going.
You appear to have ignored this "market implication".

You cannot ignore a salient point and then accuse me of spinning.


What keeps any market going is demand, people need places to live; when the market collapses you act in the national interest to direct demand to the most relevant supply; there are almost 250,000 unsold completed or part completed units in schemes where site preparation works have been completed; taking the medium term average demand at 40,000 units per year that is over 6 years supply. Getting things built in the right place must over-ride flawed planning concepts such as rural need

No-one wants to buy the NAMA landbank now and NAMA shouldn't be selling it now.
The buyers have no money and NAMA will only realise a tithe of the value of the land.


Land markets are on their knees because despite a six year supply overhang, houses continue to be built on unzoned land further undercutting the market.


Low interest rate mortgages for 10 years, targeted retrofit grants for carbon neutral/sustainable features, all sound good to me.


Both ends of the yield curve are getting steeper 0n International markets, mortgage rates will be 7% within a couple of years once the IMF risk premium is applied to retail finance; I don't disagree with tax breaks on green features between Kingspan and glen dimplex there is a direct link between tax breaks and further employment within the state, unlike the car scrappage scheme.


Expecting to legislate your way out of this mess and ignore market realities is just not going to work.
Expecting someone to buy sites of land from NAMA in locations that have no amenities seems dangerously naive.
And to suggest that allowing people to exercise their rights under the planning process undermines NAMA is nonsense.
Instead it behoves NAMA to look at each site of land and see what they can do to make it more appealing to the market.


The IMF are signing the cheques that is the result of the market realities of throwing out best practice planning policies and introducing a rezoning free for all in the form of cumman divy ups and the introduction of 'rural need' planning consents. Adding supply to an already over supplied market can have only one effect further falls in price; do not forget the stress tests on the banks only allowed for a 5% default rate on mortgages, if 33% of demand continues to disapear into one off housing the prices falls will continue and more people will drop their house keys into the local AIB en route to the airport.
PVC King
 

Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby onq » Tue Dec 28, 2010 2:41 pm

PVC King wrote:
A bad example for you perhaps, not for me.
Your summary of the characteristics of the Georgian house encompasses many of the characteristics of once off housing.



A one off house cannot by definition form part of a terrace; a one off house is never subject to superior consent in terms of design; no Georgian Square was ever derided for poor design quality.

I think you're confusing detached houses with once off houses.
All new houses require superior consent in relation to design - its called the Planning Process.

Take off the rose-tinted glasses.
A Georgian Square - in its day - was a piece of Private Open Space for the Gentry to promenade in, not the rabble.
I have pointed out that without once off and self build houses the housing market would collapse even more.
Once off houses are what is keeping what's left of the construction sector going.
You appear to have ignored this "market implication".

You cannot ignore a salient point and then accuse me of spinning.


What keeps any market going is demand, people need places to live; when the market collapses you act in the national interest to direct demand to the most relevant supply; there are almost 250,000 unsold completed or part completed units in schemes where site preparation works have been completed; taking the medium term average demand at 40,000 units per year that is over 6 years supply. Getting things built in the right place must over-ride flawed planning concepts such as rural need

Once again, you argue my case PVC King - just because NAMA now own the land doesn't mean it should be given preferential treatment.
If its in the wrong place, its in the wrong place.
You cannot on the one hand argue against once off houses on the basis of their location [in this case on unzoned land] and at teh same time seek public support for land banks that arose in partly due to poor council zoning decisions.
Zoning is merely a tool, like any tool it can be abused or used as a weapon.

No-one wants to buy the NAMA landbank now and NAMA shouldn't be selling it now.
The buyers have no money and NAMA will only realise a tithe of the value of the land.


Land markets are on their knees because despite a six year supply overhang, houses continue to be built on unzoned land further undercutting the market.


There is no widespread incidence of building on unzoned land that I am aware of - please post proof of this as I asked.

The market is on its knees because the banks - which we now own - still aren't lending.
This unsound government with its Taoiseach of questionable provenence are allowing Ireland to commit financial suicide in the hopes it will return us to competitiveness.
Starving an athlete does not make him competitive - its makes him weak, uncompetitive and eventually kills him due to malnutrition.
Low interest rate mortgages for 10 years, targeted retrofit grants for carbon neutral/sustainable features, all sound good to me.


Both ends of the yield curve are getting steeper 0n International markets, mortgage rates will be 7% within a couple of years once the IMF risk premium is applied to retail finance; I don't disagree with tax breaks on green features between Kingspan and glen dimplex there is a direct link between tax breaks and further employment within the state, unlike the car scrappage scheme.

I'm glad we can agree on something.

Expecting to legislate your way out of this mess and ignore market realities is just not going to work.
Expecting someone to buy sites of land from NAMA in locations that have no amenities seems dangerously naive.
And to suggest that allowing people to exercise their rights under the planning process undermines NAMA is nonsense.
Instead it behoves NAMA to look at each site of land and see what they can do to make it more appealing to the market.


The IMF are signing the cheques that is the result of the market realities of throwing out best practice planning policies and introducing a rezoning free for all in the form of cumman divy ups and the introduction of 'rural need' planning consents. Adding supply to an already over supplied market can have only one effect further falls in price; do not forget the stress tests on the banks only allowed for a 5% default rate on mortgages, if 33% of demand continues to disapear into one off housing the prices falls will continue and more people will drop their house keys into the local AIB en route to the airport.


I still don't see where you get this problem with one off housing.
If the NAMA land is sound in terms of its metrics [location, services, transport infrastructure] then it can be sold for one off housing - at a premium.
If, as you seem to be suggesting with your comment on "cumann" zoning above, the land is intrinsically unsuitable, then we shouldn't be building on it just because NAMA own it.
If people want to create balanced new towns around these rural zonings, so be it, but that in itself is allowing the cart to lead the horse and seems to support the very once off zoning downsides you detest.

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Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby onq » Tue Dec 28, 2010 2:44 pm

PVC King wrote:
A bad example for you perhaps, not for me.
Your summary of the characteristics of the Georgian house encompasses many of the characteristics of once off housing.



A one off house cannot by definition form part of a terrace; a one off house is never subject to superior consent in terms of design; no Georgian Square was ever derided for poor design quality.

I think you're confusing detached houses with once off houses.
All new houses require superior consent in relation to design - its called the Planning Process.

Take off the rose-tinted glasses.
A Georgian Square - in its day - was a piece of Private Open Space for the Gentry to promenade in, not the rabble.
I have pointed out that without once off and self build houses the housing market would collapse even more.
Once off houses are what is keeping what's left of the construction sector going.
You appear to have ignored this "market implication".

You cannot ignore a salient point and then accuse me of spinning.


What keeps any market going is demand, people need places to live; when the market collapses you act in the national interest to direct demand to the most relevant supply; there are almost 250,000 unsold completed or part completed units in schemes where site preparation works have been completed; taking the medium term average demand at 40,000 units per year that is over 6 years supply. Getting things built in the right place must over-ride flawed planning concepts such as rural need

Once again, you argue my case PVC King - just because NAMA now own the land doesn't mean it should be given preferential treatment.
If its in the wrong place, its in the wrong place.
You cannot on the one hand argue against once off houses on the basis of their location [in this case on unzoned land] and at teh same time seek public support for land banks that arose in partly due to poor council zoning decisions.
Zoning is merely a tool, like any tool it can be abused or used as a weapon.

No-one wants to buy the NAMA landbank now and NAMA shouldn't be selling it now.
The buyers have no money and NAMA will only realise a tithe of the value of the land.


Land markets are on their knees because despite a six year supply overhang, houses continue to be built on unzoned land further undercutting the market.


There is no widespread incidence of building on unzoned land that I am aware of - please post proof of this as I asked.

The market is on its knees because the banks - which we now own - still aren't lending.
This unsound government with its Taoiseach of questionable provenence are allowing Ireland to commit financial suicide in the hopes it will return us to competitiveness.
Starving an athlete does not make him competitive - its makes him weak, uncompetitive and eventually kills him due to malnutrition.
Low interest rate mortgages for 10 years, targeted retrofit grants for carbon neutral/sustainable features, all sound good to me.


Both ends of the yield curve are getting steeper 0n International markets, mortgage rates will be 7% within a couple of years once the IMF risk premium is applied to retail finance; I don't disagree with tax breaks on green features between Kingspan and glen dimplex there is a direct link between tax breaks and further employment within the state, unlike the car scrappage scheme.

I'm glad we can agree on something.

Expecting to legislate your way out of this mess and ignore market realities is just not going to work.
Expecting someone to buy sites of land from NAMA in locations that have no amenities seems dangerously naive.
And to suggest that allowing people to exercise their rights under the planning process undermines NAMA is nonsense.
Instead it behoves NAMA to look at each site of land and see what they can do to make it more appealing to the market.


The IMF are signing the cheques that is the result of the market realities of throwing out best practice planning policies and introducing a rezoning free for all in the form of cumman divy ups and the introduction of 'rural need' planning consents. Adding supply to an already over supplied market can have only one effect further falls in price; do not forget the stress tests on the banks only allowed for a 5% default rate on mortgages, if 33% of demand continues to disapear into one off housing the prices falls will continue and more people will drop their house keys into the local AIB en route to the airport.


I still don't see where you get this problem with one off housing.
If the NAMA land is sound in terms of its metrics [location, services, transport infrastructure] then it can be sold for one off housing - at a premium.
If, as you seem to be suggesting with your comment on "cumann" zoning above, the land is intrinsically unsuitable, then we shouldn't be building on it just because NAMA own it.
If people want to create balanced new towns around these rural zonings, so be it, but that in itself is allowing the cart to lead the horse and seems to support the very once off zoning downsides you detest.

ONQ.
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Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby PVC King » Tue Dec 28, 2010 5:02 pm

You did introduce the Pembroke and Gardiner estates for discussion as justification for one of housing; the requirements of estate led development are far more onerous than planning consents and I have to say dealing with the contemporary estates such as Grosvenor and Howard De Walden they are a very positive influence on how an urban environment develops; not saying that City of Westminster is an easy planning department it certainly isn't but the estates are even more rigourous in ensuring that all development on their patch adds to the estate. You simply cannot compare a planning free for all with a well planned estate its like trying to compare Penneys with Brown Thomas.

Nama has inherited a portfolio of bad loans mostly development land loans, they need to see three things happen

1. A lot of their own land holdings dezoned and returned to agricultural use on conacre agreements which can then be rezoned on proper planning grounds over the next 50 years.

2. Portfolio managment freedom to dispose of selcted investmentproperties to ensure that funds required to develop the best located holdings exist without further burdening the taxpayer and as such create employment and act as a balance sheet neutral stimulus programme

3. No development on unzoned land being able to undermine their strategy of stablising all property markets as quickly as is possible.

Make no mistake unless the full Nama strategy is implemented it will fail; if Nama fails the taxpayer is on the hook for in excess of €50bn; that would break the entire economy. It is that simple and they will only succeed by offering what people want, be it fourth generation offices, new shopping and distribution and a mix of residential options including high end flats and detached houses. There has been enough free for all destruction over the past decade it is time to plan the future.
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Re: Architects need to consider changing their profession

Postby onq » Tue Dec 28, 2010 7:54 pm

I don't see we are at odds here at all.

Where there is an existing viable choice NAMA lands should be preferred.
Where the NAMA lands are in a poor location in a county, they should not be imposed, but improved.
Where the NAMA lands are both disastrously sited and poorly serviced - that's a hit that may have to be taken.

However just because something may be poorly sited for the intended use of say, Residential, doesn't mean another use couldn't do well there.

For example a pharmaceutical plant manufacturing dangerous or explosive chemicals is exactly what you'd want on a remote site.
NAMA needs to take off the legalistic and financial blinkers and employ a few architects and planners to review every parcel of land to see how best to augment, complete, rezone or re-designate it.

Its possible we can design our way out of all of these problems - if the right people were asked to consider them and suggest solutions.

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