APPROACH AND METHODOLOGY
In order to build and utilize the database of stalled projects, the American Institute of Architect will identify and analyze stalled projects around the country that could be moved forward, 'but-for' financing. First, AIA will solicit information from its members and allied professionals about stalled projects across the country. The AIA will then analyze and categorize the identified projects by various factors including building type location (including those locations with a strong labor presence), new construction vs. retrofit, and impact on sustainability and livability goals. The AIA will then work with partners within the CGI community to identify opportunities for collaboration and financing to help move projects forward.
IMPLEMENTATION, TIMELINE, AND DELIVERABLES
The project consists of three stages, the first of which began in March of 2011 following AIA's engagement in the Scaling Sustainable Buildings Action Network at CGI's Winter Meeting.
Phase I - Collection of data, March-September 2011
Phase II - Analysis of data, September - November 2011
Phase III, Launch of online resource, December 2011
Following the December 2011 launch of the online Stalled Projects resource the AIA will proactively seek out opportunities to engage with other CGI partners to identify funding mechanisms to help move stalled projects forward. In addition, key economic information gathered during the Stalled Projects initiative will be shared with elected officials, the media, and other stakeholders to help illustrate the job creating potential of a thriving design and construction industry and the importance of freeing up credit market opportunities for construction projects.
The building and construction industry accounts for approximately 12 percent of U.S Gross Domestic Product however, for several years domestic construction has been in significant decline and also has lagged behind other sectors of the economy. Across the country there are numerous 'stalled projects' that are designed and ready but on hold due to lack of access to credit. The AIA defines 'stalled projects' as a design and construction project that has tangible economic or social benefits to its community and would create jobs but that cannot move forward because the owner cannot obtain financing due to excessive public or private restrictions on capital.
In March 2011, the AIA announced to its members that it is collecting data on 'stalled projects' as a way to raise awareness among federal policymakers of the need for legislation to help unfreeze credit markets. Even though this is the first time that the AIA has undertaken such a task, the organization believes that as a membership organization it has unique access to critical information on this topic and the unique abilities to find pathways towards jumpstarting growth in the construction sector.
The AIA plans to jumpstart stalled projects by identifying financing streams and partners within the CGI community who are eager to spur job creation. The AIA is seeking potential partners on several fronts in particular. First, the AIA is looking for ways to further populate the Stalled Projects database by adding additional projects and investors. The AIA would welcome the input of any CGI members who are aware of current stalled projects they would like to list as well as individuals/entities looking to invest in construction projects that are currently stalled. Second, the AIA is looking for partners to help publicize and promote the Stalled Projects concept to other design and construction industry stakeholders. Finally, the AIA would welcome CGI members who would like to join in a coalition effort designed to inform the media, politicians, and the public on the contributions that design and construction make to the US economy and to advocate for legislation and regulatory reform that provides relief to our much beleaguered segment of the economy.