I am one of those. An octogenarian, facing the inevitable. Leaving a trail of buildings, and also the certifications of their emergence. Among them are files that contain the anatomies of 258 NJ nursing homes. As I contemplate my trove of 258 opportunities for initiative toward new work, I wish that I had another half century to check out their status and ramp up another career. But I’m hoping for another 2 or 3 years to wrap up my life. That includes passing on before I pass on. Meanwhile, in brief ad format, here’s what I encourage the young, the needy, professional, or both to act upon:


Buildings, upgraded between 1996-2009 are now ready for additions, renovation, conversions, green evaluation, upgrading, ancillary land use and / or other options. Files include small scale building and site plans, functions, land and building areas, HVAC & Structural systems, internal & external photos, aerial & neighborhood coverage, with descriptions, zoning and civic data.

First come, first served. Be the first in your Chapter to capitalize.

For more: Read on:

Needs and technology change. New methods of health care are thrust upon us. The population is aging. Hospitals are failing. Specialties (like dialysis, pulmonary, hospice and other long term or intermittent care) are finding new, less expensive venues. Life styles require different combinations of activity, stimulation, interactive environments and the facility changes thereof. Their enclosures need adaptation, energy, and cybernetics.

There are unquestionable needs to be filled by architects with initiative. Among our own needs for fulfillment and sustenance, each will tune in to one’s own aspect of architecture. These dual needs would ideally coincide. As an educator, I may like to find a cadre of students, each to examine a file, invite UMDNJ for a session on medical needs, google, visit, interview, and redesign to modify, refit and repair a health care venue.

And/or as a start-up practitioner, I would gather together a colleague who has muddy boots, one who has a calculator, and a third having a keen interest in life sciences in order to determine the needs and wants of a select number of the 258. And why wouldn’t this formula apply to any struggling NJAIA member? Let me know whether it applies to you.

In my youth, an age when architects were male, architects and football coaches had daughters. My three chose to pursue careers in public service, education, and health care. From time immemorial, sons were to follow in their father’s footsteps, work together on common goals, and take over when the old man “passed on”. Whence therefore goes my tangible legacy?

Surprisingly, upon reflection, I realize that public service, education, and health care constituted the major phases of my career: (NJ Director of Housing and Urban Development, Rutgers University faculty, decades as an AAA Arbitrator, and years of inspecting and documenting New Jersey’s nursing homes.)  Harking back to the ancient Vitruvius and his 11 disciplines, I am immensely grateful to find today that the young have tuned in to their own essence of architecture in serving the needs of others via several venues. Cybernetic architects included. And the living, breathing, sweating Burj Dubai.

Fortunately, there is a contest going on in our education between effete academics and pragmatic practitioners. Cast your vote now! I would venture that the essence of an architectural practice in this country is to control the product in every respect. This requires that students, and practitioners themselves, conceive, start, build or manage construction. This product-oriented society requires initiative. The essence of that initiative is to find a need and fill it. Which is, coincidentally, the essence of architectural design. Not excluding visual guidance. Nor merely “creating emotions by means of raw materials”, but creating emotions that are positive and healing, in nature.

If I were an Administrator of a medical facility, I would be solidly impressed by someone who came to me with a scheme of alternatives that promises to reduce my operating expenses, raise my revenue, help my staff, and make my patients happy. In summary, I have addressed my need to unburden my survivors, your need for new commissions, the public’s need for health care adjustment, and the aging population’s need for intelligent options. It’s up to you to fill those needs. Oh, and maybe advance your profession’s image as you advance your own.

Contact with your geographic range of service. For review see:

Ray Heinrich, AIA, APA [email protected]  973-593-8244

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