The Canary’s Successor

The Canary’s Successor

We are ramping up for construction of the new headquarters for the Alabama Moving Image Association, the non-profit that produces Birmingham’s nationally acclaimed Sidewalk Film Festival. Their space is located within and below the recently redeveloped Pizitz building and near The Lyric Theatre and Thomas Jefferson Tower, projects we recently finished in the city’s theater [Read More]

Find a Passion First

Find a Passion First

This week, I was talking with a customer of ours who is half of a pair of successful brothers in real estate, who have built upon what their grandfather started several decades ago. We got to talking about jobs and what makes one satisfied, and resolved that many of our contemporaries go after the money, [Read More]

Keeping Stormwater Below Deck

Keeping Stormwater Below Deck

We are in the early stages of a parking structure design for a new project which also includes a storm water management system below the deck. While a number of storm water management systems exist in the market, our design is part of the parking deck and fairly simple compared to most. It features precast [Read More]

When “Sugar Sand Beaches” Aren’t a Selling Point.

When “Sugar Sand Beaches” Aren’t a Selling Point.

Many times, prime real estate sits undeveloped because it’s a tough build. Florida is famous for this problem, because of the high concentration of organic matter in their sandy soil. Recently, when a customer came to us, we spent a fair amount of time figuring out how the buildings and parking area would carry the [Read More]

North Coasting

North Coasting

Sometimes, you need a break. My son is finishing up his 9th year of medical training, and he’s tired. Honestly, I was, too. When we could both schedule a little downtime, we embarked on a 12-day father/son trip starting at the Lost Coast, Northern California’s coastal wilderness. I suspect when Hwy 101 was first planed [Read More]

Maybe I’m a Stoic

Maybe I’m a Stoic

I am wondering: What if we approached our jobs and what we do every day a bit more like the Stoics?  To summarize Wikipedia, these ancients thought that happiness comes from accepting our lot in life and consequently, enjoying what we do. (Well, at least most days.) To me, this means not allowing too much push [Read More]

Visual Noise at Work

Visual Noise at Work

It seems the idea of  “just right” office space is always evolving. When we designed our office, we carefully weighed the benefits of open space, closed offices and everything in between. In the end, we landed on our own unique hybrid. I’m glad we steered away from a completely open office, as I’m now hearing [Read More]

Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

Things Aren’t Always What They Seem

This last week, I made my annual pilgrimage to the ICSC Recon convention in Las Vegas in support of our retail group. At any convention, I have always found one gets as much out of riding in a taxi or a visit to coffee shop as one gets on the convention floor. This year was [Read More]

Father of the Bride

Father of the Bride

I’ve held a few titles over the years, but this weekend I’ll have a new one: “Father of the Bride.” My oldest daughter is getting married Saturday, and has chosen our place and barn for her reception. Today, the barn is filled with florists, caterers and others getting it ready. I wish I had something [Read More]

Wisdom and Experience Traveling Hand in Hand

Wisdom and Experience Traveling Hand in Hand

This week, a couple of us were reviewing an article about a building contractor that let things get out of control on a large high school project. The Board of Education had just announced the school would not open in the fall as planned, delaying until December. (Every surety’s nightmare.) We then started discussing large [Read More]