If you don’t commonly engage in the world of architectural social media, if you don’t read architectural journals or participate in the architectural community, then this topic might be new to you. There are many ways of looking at it, but one thing ought to be consistent, architecture makes change. Architecture OUGHT to make change. The question is, what is that change?
I see architecture for change or architecture of change a bit differently than what I often read. Let’s back up a minute to explain. A trait of mine that became evident in my junior high school days, is at times (or all the time) swimming the other direction just for the sake of doing it. Irrational at times. I recall a time in those difficult junior high school days where I made a decision (socially), not because I considered it or thought about my own personal feelings, but chose the opposite direction of what my peers were pressuring me to do just to spite them. In some cases that might be wise; or in all cases that might be wise in junior high or middle school. In this case, it was innocuous; there was no correct answer; however, for the first time in my life I became keenly aware that I react that way when pressured.
With all the writings, speeches, and positive voices about making an architecture of change, I see it from the point of view of my small place on this planet as a solo practitioner, working in a small city and being part of a community where I am known. Architecture for change in my world is often one that goes unnoticed, but is very important. It involves small steps and small projects. Rules of logic dictate that this does not negate large projects from being instrumental in change.
After 14 years of running my own practice, a bit more hidden than most, I see an architecture for change happening at a small-scale with transformation carried on the backs of small business owners and homeowners that care enough to invest in architecture. I seek out like-minded individuals that are far more interested in rebuilding something that has been (at least mentally) thrown away by putting their own hard-earned dollars into resurrecting it. Building owners and landlords put their investments through the sieve of building codes and regulatory standards that require a higher proportion of the project budget because they believe that a return on an investment ought to be shared with their community. These people are far from being interested in building monuments to themselves or competing against similar businesses or institutions – they look at where they’re at and try to make it better. I know they want to make a buck too. However, if one could choose to invest in Main Street USA or Strip Mall USA, I applaud those who haven’t abandoned Main Street.
Grand public works of architecture are necessary to resuscitate sleepy old towns. Impressive urban gestures are critical in the course of large metropolitan rebirth. I see architecture for change happening through individuals trying to make it through the day. Slow down sometime, look up, but maybe not as high up as usual and see a different scale of change.
It starts where you buy your coffee.
Please consider multiple points of view and read what my friends believe about architecture for change. #Architalks.
Marica McKeel – Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
ArchiTalks : Architecture of Change
Lora Teagarden – L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
Architect(ure) of Change
Collier Ward – One More Story (@BuildingContent)
Architecture of Change
Jeremiah Russell, AIA – ROGUE Architecture (@rogue_architect)
architecture of change: #architalks
Eric T. Faulkner – Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
Change — The Document Evolution
Michele Grace Hottel – Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
architecture of change
brady ernst – Soapbox Architect (@bradyernstAIA)
The Architecture of Change: R/UDAT
Brian Paletz – The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
Architecture = Change
Michael LaValley – Evolving Architect (@archivalley)
My Architecture of Change / Hitting Pause to Redesign My Life
Brinn Miracle – Architangent (@architangent)
Architecture of Change: Building a Legacy
Jeffrey Pelletier – Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Imagining the Future of Architecture
Samantha R. Markham – The Aspiring Architect (@TheAspiringArch)
3 Things I Hope Change in Architecture
Nisha Kandiah – ArchiDragon (@ArchiDragon)
The art of Architecture of Change
Jim Mehaffey – Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
Mark Stephens – Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
The Architecture of Change