April 4, 2008
  Lofty Thinking Revitalizes a Johns Hopkins University Landmark
Kliment & Halsband’s design gives Gilman Hall an atrium that floats to the top
Kliment & Halsband’s renovation for Johns Hopkins University’s Gilman Hall will gut the building’s wall and partitions and upgrade its interiors, as well as make it more sustainable. A light and buoyant glass-roofed atrium will cover a currently disused open space in the central block of the building. The renovation will increase the building’s usable academic space and reunite humanities programs that had previously left due to a lack of space.

Specialization and the Future of Architecture Practice
WD Partners’ Vice President of Architecture, John Miologos, AIA, says that when he made the decision to “jump the tracks” on the time-honored traditional architecture career path, most of my architect friends predicted the end of my career. After 30 years of designing and managing highly specialized architecture, he still encounters the myopic prejudice that this kind of architecture is less challenging and less worthy of respect than the architecture being applied at general practice firms. Here’s what he thinks we should do about it.

Hot Off the Grill
Heated windows eliminate draft at Durango restaurant, provide energy savings
The Mahogany Grille in downtown Durango, Colo., claims it is the first restaurant in North America to adopt heated windows to eliminate draft. The restaurant installed a technology called Thermique™ that transforms two front windows—each measuring 42 square feet of glass—into a radiant heat source. The two heated glass windows also provide condensation control to prevent them from fogging or frosting while the heat’s on, thus giving diners a clear view of the scenic downtown Durango at all times. Saving energy is also a significant benefit of the new windows.

Bloggers Wanted for ‘Change the World 2008’ Preconvention Conference
The AIA Technology for Architecture Practice (TAP) knowledge community is looking for six young architecture professionals, students, and/or recent graduates to serve as bloggers at the May 13-14 “Change the World 2008: Harnessing BIM Technology and Integrated Project Delivery for Sustainable Design” preconvention conference at the Boston Convention Center. They are specifically looking for interested candidates who are studying or working in the Boston area. The conference will provide a well-rounded exploration in the application of building information modeling (BIM) related technologies, integrated project delivery, advanced design, and building technologies to achieve sustainable practices. Selected bloggers will contribute commentary, news, and live coverage. Each blogger will receive complimentary registration to the preconvention conference and the AIA 2008 National Convention and Design Expo, plus a $400 stipend (a combined value of more than $1,000). Applications are due electronically no later than April 18. Chosen bloggers will be notified by April 29. For details and application, click here.

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This is the home of the weekly Best Practices column, news of tips and tools that you can use in your day-to-day practice and case studies illustrating “how-tos” and “lessons learned” for all stages of practice. The Practice Zone also features reports of research in architecture and related fields.