News (October 01, 2001)


Setting the Record Straight.

In the article “Remedial Economics” which appeared in the August 2001 issue of Canadian Architect, Adele Weder referred to three Vancouver firms as having been “slapped with lawsuits for problematic school structures designed after the 1997-98 budget cuts.” One of the firms listed, Dalla-Lana Griffin Dowling Knapp, was included erroneously. The firm has not in fact been the subject of a lawsuit.

Ms. Weder explains: “During my research for the story, I was informed that several architectural firms were being sued because of leakage problems in recently built schools. I spoke to several dozen architects, and one source cited Dalla-Lana Griffin Dowling Knapp as being among those firms. The following Monday morning, I planned to contact Fred Dalla-Lana for comment on the case, but I was informed he had died suddenly on the weekend. In the meantime, I contacted the other two firms rumoured to be facing lawsuits; their principals confirmed the lawsuits and provided on-the-record commentary for the article. Not wanting to bother Mr. Dalla-Lana’s colleagues at such a distressing time, I decided not to pursue on-the-record commentary from the firm. Unfortunately this meant that the very important confirmation of the supposed lawsuit fell by the wayside. For that I offer an apology and a retraction.

In no way did I intend to malign the reputation of Dalla-Lana Griffin Dowling Knapp. To the contrary, I believe the thesis and tone of my article was that architects were unjustly facing occasional legal consequences for construction failures that may not have been preventable under the new financial constraints.”

Having worked with Ms. Weder over a number of years, we as editors had no reason to believe that the article contained unverified information, and accepted her article at face value. We join Ms. Weder in retracting the erroneous statement and wish to take this opportunity to set the record straight and to apologize to Dalla-Lana Griffin Dowling Knapp Architects for any embarrassment or loss of reputation the article may have caused.


ROM’s long list.

The Royal Ontario Museum’s Renaissance ROM Master Plan Architect Selection Committee has announced a long list of 12 architectural firms that are invited to submit a sketchbook proposal of an architectural design for the museum’s expansion, from which a short list of three will be established. The list, drawn from 50 expressions of interest, includes: Andrea Bruno (Turin), Atelier Jean Nouvel (Paris), Bing Thom Architects (Vancouver), Cesar Pelli and Associates (New York) with Adamson Associates Architects (Toronto), Daniel Libeskind (Berlin), Foster and Partners (London), Kohn Pedersen Fox and Asociates (New York), Michael Hopkins and Partners (London), Polshek Partnership Architects (New York), Rafael Violy Architects (New York), Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (Chicago), and Tod Williams, Billie Tsien and Associates (New York). In January 2002, the Toronto-based ROM will exhibit the sketchbooks of the short-listed firms in Views of our Future, Three Architectural Finalists. The final architect selection will be announced at the end of January. The major capital expansion of the ROM and its galleries will be completed in three phases of construction between 2004 and 2006.

Windsor and Halifax Waterfronts.

Two Canadian projects were awarded top prizes at the 19th annual international conference of the Waterfront Center. The Top Honour for a Plan went to the Central Riverfront Implementation Plan for Windsor, Ontario, prepared by Brook McIlroy Inc. of Toronto. An honour for Historic Preservation/Adaptive Reuse went to the Halifax Waterfront Rejuvenation and Harbourwalk, Halifax, Nova Scotia, submitted by Lydon Lynch Architects Ltd. and D.P. Halloran of Halloran Campbell, both of Halifax.