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The AIA Conference on Architecture and Design 2024 kicks off in Washington, D.C. on June 5

In The District

The AIA Conference on Architecture and Design 2024 kicks off in Washington, D.C. on June 5

The U.S. Capitol Building (eGuide Travel/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED)

The 2024 AIA Conference on Architecture and Design (AIA24) begins this week in Washington, D.C. AIA24’s headquarters will be the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Mount Vernon Square. There, thousands of AEC professionals will convene between June 5–8 for symposia, networking, and tours of the nation’s capital.

This year’s notable speakers include Dr. Sanjay Gupta, who will give a talk about public health on June 6. “One of the things we’re really trying to focus on this year is welcoming people back into the AIA community,” AIA president Kimberly Dowdell told AN. “We want to create a welcoming environment where people who are architecturally educated can come back and be a part of a community that’s focused on the built environment.”

All week long at AIA24 there are ample opportunities for touring projects and attending seminars while earning AIA credits. On day one, June 5, Billie Tsien will join current and former U.S. Commission of Fine Arts members to discuss how the historic institution shapes the public realm. That same day, Derek Sola of JCJ Architecture will deliver a harrowing account of designing a memorial for victims of the Las Vegas Route 91 Harvest Music Festival shooting in 2017. Sandra Sierdzinska, design manager at the Smithsonian, will lead a tour of the National Museum of African American History.

Thursday, June 6, Marion Weiss will join leaders from SOM and Studio Ma for a lecture about “The Embassy Effect” which will explore the design of new U.S. embassies and consulates around the globe. Joan Lui, founder of Women Architects Collective, will give tips for branding young architecture offices.

Melvalean McLemore of Moody Nolan, Zhetique Gunn from the District of Columbia Office of Planning, and Janiece Williams, cofounder of LeaderFlow, will give a talk the next day, June 7, about cultivating equity in architecture. Sharon Prince, founder and CEO of Grace Farms, will join other leaders in a talk about “ethical decarbonization,” a theme which took center stage in this year’s Design for Freedom summit. There will also be a walking tour of a new 66-acre green space, The Parks at Walter Reed, which was recently finished atop a former military hospital.

On Saturday, June 8, Dean Sakamoto and Dr. Karl Kim will give an overview of lessons learned from the Lahaina wildfires in Hawaii. AIA North Carolina Director of Communications Maggie Mae Whitmore will give a presentation about how architects can use social media to grow their brand.

For visitors interested in learning about community efforts to combat gentrification, student AIA members can join Joel Mills on a walking tour titled Conflict Zones: Community Change in the D.C. Region. David Feaster, a principal at KieranTimberlake, will give a tour of the new permanent installation at the John F. Kennedy Center. There will also be a tour of Mies van der Rohe’s Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library which was recently renovated by Mecanoo and OTJ Architects.

The Architect’s Newspaper has a booth at AIA24. Stop by Booth No. 208 on Thursday, June 6, to meet with AN executive editor Jack Murphy.

And another editor’s pick: Be sure to grab a quick bite from Ben’s Chili Bowl, a D.C. mainstay on U Street.

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