A Memo from AIA President Clark Manus, FAIA
I wanted to bring your attention to the launch of a major initiative at the AIA – one that addresses the number one issue facing our members in this sluggish economy – access to credit.
Despite record low interest rates, banks remain reluctant to lend to the design and construction sector. As the May Architecture Billings Index showed, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of commercial building projects nationwide that have been stalled for no other reason than lack of financing.
To address this problem, we announced in June at CGI America, a Clinton Global Initiative jobs conference in Chicago our intent to develop a database of sorts that would assemble projects that have been stalled for no other reason than lack of financing. Since then, we have been encouraged by the number of investment firms that reached out to us to be listed in this database. So, we undertook a four-month long effort to develop a page on AIA.org – the Stalled Projects page http://www.aia.org/stalledprojects/index.htm, which will act as a networking website for real-estate investors and your clients, the developers.
This unique page of AIA.org seeks to put you more in control of your own destiny. Instead of waiting for the banks, you will be able to reach out to a group of investors who have chosen to list themselves for the sole reason of lending money to creditworthy projects. The AIA Stalled Projects page will be a place where developers and investors can meet to exchange information. Investors looking to invest in commercial real estate will be able to peruse a list of projects seeking capital. Developers looking for investment capital will be able to look up and reach out to investors willing to lend.
In order for this initiative to be a success, we need your help. We need members to list their stalled projects on this page, to populate the site so that investors will find it worthwhile. We intend to announce this AIA initiative in a major press announcement November 7, so we need as many projects to be listed as possible now. If you list your project, it will be available for anyone who has signed in to see. As times goes on, we hope to have hundreds of projects and hundreds of investors populating this site, interacting and building working relationships with one another. Please email any comments about the site to [email protected].
There’s money out there for your project; all that’s needed is for you to list it on the AIA’s Stalled Projects page.
Clark Manus, FAIA