The New York City Department of Buildings issued building permits for 576 residential units in 133 buildings citywide in January and February of 2009, 20 percent of the total reached for the same period in 2008, when permits were issued for 2,878 units in 344 buildings and 13 percent of the units that were permitted in January and February of 2007, when permits were issued for 4,476 units in 621 buildings throughout the five boroughs. This steep decline is partially explained by seasonal factors, regulatory changes and unique financial circumstances but the numbers also signal the end of a residential
Fiona Cousins specializes in translating sustainability from an abstract idea into concrete solutions on the ground. Originally trained as a mechanical engineer, Cousins now leads sustainable consulting and building design teams as a principal in ARUP’s New York office. n addition to her sustainability consulting, Cousins is kept busy directing several construction projects, including the new chemistry building at Princeton University - a site she visits once a week. Related Links: Two Weeks in the Life of Langan International’s George Leventis A Day in the Life of USGBCNY’s Russell Unger COUSINS Sustainable building captured Cousins’s interest early in her career.
The often-dangerous leap into international work was a work in progress for Langan Engineering & Environmental Services for more than a decade. And for George Leventis, it was a labor of love. Langan International serves as the lender’s technical advisor on the Elefsina-Korinthos-Patrea-Tsakona Motorway in Greece. When a 20-story office tower with 5 levels basement in Abu Dhabi encountered uncontrolled groundwater during excavation, Langan was called to review all work performed and provide recommendations for remedial action, which included additional testing to assess the stability of the underlying rock to serve as foundation for the structure. Related Links: A Day
Russell Unger, executive director of the New York Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council, wants to make green building the norm in New York City. Russell Unger, Executive Director of the New York Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBCNY), conferring with Yetsuh Frank, Director of Programs. Unger’s days are filled with a mixture of green building events, in-person meetings, phone calls and mountains of emails. Related Links: Two Weeks in the Life of Langan International’s George Leventis A Day in the Life of ARUP Engineer Fiona Cousins To date, most green buildings in New York are high-end,
The Architecture, Construction and Engineering Mentor Program offers high-school students a chance to discover a range of opportunities in design and construction – and scholarships to help them achieve their goals. More than 50,000 high school students nationally have participated in the ACE Mentor Program since its inception in 1995, with 9,300 taking part in it this year. “This program has taken kids with an interest in building and shown them being an engineer is more than being a math geek,” says Denise Richardson, managing director of the General Contractors Association of New York. More than 50,000 high school students
In a recession, A/E/C firms can be said to fall into one of two categories: there are those that panic, and those that use tough economic times to remind themselves of the fundamentals of their business. HLAVENKA It’s easy to guess which category you want your firm to be in. But all too often, firms that believe they are acting intelligently discover too late that the fog of economic doom clouded their business judgment and led to poor decision making. When times are this tough and the most drastic of measures are deemed the bare minimum to survive, how do
Hill International has received construction management contracts for two publicly funded performing arts centers on two college campuses located in the tri-state area. The first is a $69 million, 30-month contract from the City University of New York to provide construction management on a performing arts center at Brooklyn College. The project will include the partial demolition of the existing Gershwin Theater, which along with the Whitman Theater is part of the original Brooklyn College Theater Complex built between 1953 and 1955 and the construction of a new 60,000-sq-ft multi-purpose theater. The new theater will consist of music rehearsal space,
The New York City Center has unveiled plans to modernize and restore its historic midtown theater with a project designed by Polshek Partnership Architects who was careful to respect its original Moorish-accented design. Originally constructed in 1923, the building was dedicated by Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia 20 years later as Manhattan’s first performing arts center. Now, the center will undergo a series of upgrades including improved seating and sightlines and new amenities. A new canopy with additional exterior lighting and signage will also be added, subject to the approval of the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission. In the interior, the
When economic times are tough, there is usually an increase in the number of consultants used in architectural and engineering firms, as well as in construction companies. The “consultants”referred to in this article are the ones that may have been employees of the firm in better economic times. This is in contrast with other types of consultants who have specialties and work on projects, such as MEP engineers. Labeling these individuals as “consultants” allows the company to continue working with those individuals in a fashion that is less expensive for the company, but may be more expensive for the individual.
In the world of property-casualty insurance, businesses and their advisers often deal with certificates of insurance. They are commonplace instruments that are accepted in the marketplace as reasonable assurance that certain objects or activities are covered by insurance. For example, when valuable equipment is stored in a warehouse until a construction project is ready to receive and install it, cautious owners often insist on seeing insurance certificates before paying for the merchandise in order to be assured that the property is protected against casualty losses. CONNOLLY When a contractor employs a subcontractor to perform part of the work of a