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What is your forecast for the Landscape Architecture job market 2011 and beyond?

Landscape Architecture for Landscape Architects Forums GENERAL DISCUSSION What is your forecast for the Landscape Architecture job market 2011 and beyond?

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 47 total)
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  • #166235
    Jim Del Carpio
    Participant

    no worries

    #166234
    mark foster
    Participant

    Andrew has a good point.  Another phenomenon was how uneven the real estate crash was–some regions had a huge bubble and crashed hard, but a lot of areas had much milder swings  This may mean the recovery will be patchy–some areas improving sooner/better than others.  Maybe some of the worst, as Chad suggests, not ever fully recovering (in terms of LA work).

    #166233
    Jim Del Carpio
    Participant

    It’s predictable the Midwest Region will be less impacted by Housing, these region has always been behind in economic growth in comparison to the West and East coast. The Intermountain region, most notably Nevada  felt the housing bubble burst the most. Moreover, the overall trend for financial institutions to lend money for construction will be nationwide. First quarter hiring in the construction sector will be higher than in 2009, the trend will be steady, slow growth in comparison to 2009, which is what we all want.

    #166232
    Boilerplater
    Participant

    Don’t forget that a lot of those public sector projects will be designed by private sector firms and built by private sector companies, using materials supplied by private sector companies.  When the people in those companies have more to spend, their money gets circulated around the economy.

    #166231
    Andrew Garulay, RLA
    Participant

    TARP money was for financial institutions. The money some are refering to is the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

     

    The big question is whether the government borrowing money to recirculate results in more jobs than it smothers by the added deficit. It is forgotten that the government takes that money out of the economy to put it into the economy.  It may help the few who directly get those jobs, but it may slow down the real supply and demand of what we do.

     

    Somehow, a lot of this money is finding its way into school budgets and state budgets instead of building projects.

    #166230
    Andrew Garulay, RLA
    Participant

    Bad news:

    Home sales about even from 2009 to 2010. Whether or not you work or want to work in the residential sector, it is a large pert of the profession that usually absorbs a large percentage of employed LAs that may or may not be competing for jobs in the sectors that you may want to work in. Worse yet is that when home sales are down, real estate equity is down. Low equity = low borrowing power which means lower capital for investment….. low investment = low growth in business …

     

    It’s going to be a while.

    #166229
    Trace One
    Participant

    There already is a proliferation of jobs related to climate change review in the governments (state, fed., local). These could be a real chance to make a difference. Also walkable street type jobs – related to climate change mandates, actually. These are good places to look for work, and will only grow in the coming decade. IMHO

    #166228
    Jason T. Radice
    Participant

    The ‘stimulus’ has really failed to materialize anything outside of street resurfacing. Many other projects had been on the DOT schedules for 5 years or more (DOTs plan out projects years in advance) meaning no design work was created. Local municipalities are broke and not investing in anything outside of necessities. ‘Stimulus’ was an utter failure, Keynesian economics simply doesn’t work, and has never worked (the Great Depression was actually sustained by Roosevelt’s Keynesian economic policy). As far as govt jobs, read the fine print. A great deal are temporary (one year) or busy work, and with a partial regime change in November, we can expect a great many of these positions to disappear due to a lack of funding. State and local governments are laying off in droves, or just not hiring.

     

    There is a backlog of projects already designed but not built that will keep the design industry thin for many, many years.  Commercial development is in the gutter, and will be for some time. From my reading (every day) on the state of the industry, it ain’t gettin better, it’s gettin worse. I predcit 2 to 5 yeas before things even START to get better. Much of that time depends on which administration is in control and the level of their stranglehold on banks and business.

    #166227
    Trace One
    Participant

    Jason, I disagree – the stimulus funds kept many state DOT’s going, it certainly did ours, and the smart economists (Paul Krugman, Joseph Stiglitz) detail it’s effects, with the only complaint being it should have been larger.

    Additionallly, government jobs related to climate change are not going to go away, this expertise will proliferate, and can be extremelly important in mapping our future.

     

    Since when did this site become a Republican sounding board?

    And, Jason, as for the administration ‘stranglehold on banks and businesses” where exactly is that happening? Even Obama’s health bill was weighted in favor of businesses. The FCC rules just passed for net neutrality were WRITTEN by AT &T. 

    Just coming out of ten years that proved that Reagan’s trickle down theory does not work, as well as the melt down of the world economy due to the de-regulation of banks, I find it INCREDIBLE that people are crying about government regulations, basically acting against their own i nterests, and in the interests of big business. And believe me, with the Citizens United decision, business has only increased it’s stranglehold on our country. AT&T alone has 500 lobbyists in DC, making sure congress works for them.

    The first step is people have to understand that big business will milk us dry and run off with the money, as they have done historically whenever they could. That is ok, it is their job to do that. But GOVERNMENT serves as a balance to big business, by acting in the interests of the society as a whole – national parks, roads, food inspection..

     

    #166226
    Trace One
    Participant

    and don’t forget that the tax cut bill, as far as I know, also involved the elimation of the mortgage tax credit. No more subsidized sprawl, less jobs for residentially inclined LA’s..

    #166225
    Trace One
    Participant

    But both that temporary job and the furloughed job exist, at least where I work, to some degree because of the Reinvestment stuff.

    The alternative would have been no jobs all around.

     

     

    #166224
    Tosh K
    Participant

    Recovery to the bubble years or to a stable economy?  I get the feeling many folks want/expect recovery to take us into the bubble economy of the 90s/00s… which isn’t healthy.

     

    The BDI is back up to its “normal” levels, which would indicate that big picture manufacturing and construction outlook is normalizing (it’s a bit down of late due to over supply of ships in the global fleet with the 2008 order of ships entering the shipping fleet).  Banks still seem to be reluctant to lend, so private sector work may take a while until they start allowing people to build again.  This lack of lending hurts us now, but is reducing risk and therefore the probability of another bubble and crash.

     

    Recovery Act projects have been active in the Northeast in repairing infrastructure in bad need of repair, resulting in construction related work.  This enables subs to bid lower and get some projects off the boards and in the ground.  Mostly it prevents worsening conditions but doesn’t reach bubble levels.

     

    TIGER money is making its way into helping a lot of design firms – as previously noted private sector firms will be hired as contractors and consultants, so that’s a much needed boost.  These grants are designated for smart growth, so areas relying on sprawl growth will not be seeing much of this money.  There are other grants being passed around (the train ones being a potentially big one if you’re in infrastructure, of course some places have turned down this funding – looking at you WI and OH; train stations, ROW work, TOD planning work…)

     

    In the greater NYC area, the low bonus rates might hurt the residential market.  Around here the trickle down of the truly wealthy commissioning large residential projects are the bread and butter of many firms.  For better or worse this holiday season might not be so jolly.

     

    As far as the LA job market goes, I suppose it depends on how firms are able to adapt in the changing conditions.  Many larger offices have focused on international work (as have many of our sister profession the building architects), this of course has its set of built in risks (the Dubai halt should be a red flag, China after all is running out of water and has a massive surplus of real estate- which may dent its expansion).  Others have changed their marketing/focus to chase projects that are seeing more investment by public or private clients – firms can change their market to help themselves.

     

    In terms of this translating into employment, a change should require either a change in business model/work force: some firms will replace their workforce for newer knowledge/lower cost, others may merge with allied professions for wider capabilities, and some might choose to downsize and wait it out.  While the slow down was painful, I suspect it gave a lot of people time to take a step back and really think about what they were doing both in the work and in the business.

     

    Overall I think 2011 will see an uptick in total work done, continuing modest growth starting with areas that are already seeing new work (East/West Coast) and a general more cautiously optimistic outlook.  Compared to ’09 when I was doing information interviews (trying to get a foot in the door everywhere as I looked for employment), firms I know from CA to MN to the east coast seem less fearful of the future and more hopeful.  Things appear to be headed for the better.

     

    On a side note I would love to see more firms take initiative in research and development.  Areas such as medicine, where an emphasis on environments and life styles is increasing (combating obesity, respiratory illnesses) and security (government/financial institutions spend a lot on R&D that we could participate in.  Either by joining research groups or taking on partnerships with private sector labs and universities, the profession could benefit from an influx of funding to help stabilize private practices.  Just sayin faculties could stay more relevant to private firms, students can get real world exposure at in school research and network, firms can be more stable and stay cutting edge…  I’m thinking biotech now, aerospace of old.

    #166223
    Trace One
    Participant

    not the case in California..In fact, Southern SD is looking at major highway construction, expansion of Rte 5 from ten to fourteen lanes, and the central valley has the bullit train proposal, huge project..I just finished a lane widening..

    Sorry, Nevada..All I know, generally, is the re-investment act worked, except as the republicans limited it – it needed to be the full-blown CCC’s etc., of the thirties, as J. Stiglitz and Paul Krugman write, repeatedly..

    As for the future, like I said before, look for climate change jobs and walkable streets type jobs – these will proliferate, as long as we have money.

    I am not saying the economy is great, and actually, since we have failed to regulate the banks dastardly profit-taking on our backs, the bank implosion may happen again…

    #166222
    Andrew Garulay, RLA
    Participant

    Adapting to conditions is what all business does all of the time. The difference right now is that government has been hugely influencing what is going on and no one knows what to adapt to. They are al over the place and generally targeting their beneficiaries. Every time something is steared in one direction, it is steared away from where it was going to go and what those who prepared had invested.

     

     

     

     

    #166221
    Boilerplater
    Participant

    Looks like recent SoCal weather will result in a bit of work for some residential LAs: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40779006/ns/weather

     

    Earthquakes, wildfires, hurricanes, floods…of course we don’t hope for them, but they do create a lot of work, along with a chance to rebuild better.

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