ets October 2009 - Architecture Overload

Review Quizzes

EnP Review Quiz

Total Pageviews




Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Architectural Design Subject Reformat

Resolution No. 2009 - 14
Series of 2009

WHEREAS, Section 7 (m), Article I of Republic Act No. 9266, known as the Architecture Act of 2004, states, to wit:
“Section 7. Powers and Functions of the Board. – xxx
(m) To adopt a program for the full computerization of the licensure examination; xxx“ (emphasis ours)
WHEREAS, Sec. 7 (q) of R.A. No. 8981, cited as the “PRC Modernization Act of 2000” empowers the Professional Regulation Commission to carry out the full computerization of its system including the Board licensure examinations (the “BLE”);
WHEREAS, the present format of the Architectural Design and Site Planning Subject (the “Subject”) of the Board Licensure Examination for Architects (the “BLEA”) requires manual drafting skillsets in solving a single, situational design (cum site planning) problem, for the examinee to successfully undertake and pass the Subject;
WHEREAS, the two (2) other BLEA Subject sets are non-drafting Subjects that only require the examinees to answer a combined total of two hundred and fifty (250) questions under a multiple choice format cum multiple situational problems, the answers to which are read only by optical media readers (OMR);
WHEREAS, the required shift from a manual drafting, single design (cum site planning) problem format to a non-drafting multiple design (cum site planning) problem format for the Subject shall achieve the following:
a) remove the subjectivity generally/ specifically associated with the manual checking of the examinee’s answer in the form of plates consisting of drawing sheets;
b) remove perennial doubts by examinees as to the validity of the checking of the design solution, which can only be done manually within a period of thirty (30) days as prescribed by law;
c) remove the bias against the examinees with limited manual drafting skillsets;
d) allow the examinees better chances of passing the Subject since there will be multiple short situational problems to solve, covering several design archetypes rather than just one long situational problem;
e) eliminate situations wherein examinees’ mistakes in the appreciation/ comprehension of one long situational problem definitely increases the chances of failure in the Subject;
f) eliminate the need for cumbersome manual drafting implements/ paraphernalia/ apparatus to be brought to the test site by the examinees e.g. drawing board, T-square, 30-/60-degree triangles, protractor, etc.;
g) eliminate the perennial confusion and misinterpretation of drawing/ drafting requirements and affixing signatures or prohibited images/ graphics on the sheets/ drawings;
h) allow examinees with disabilities to take the Subject with ease; and
i) shall allow the future reduction of the Subject test period from the present ten (10) hours.
WHEREAS, the PRBoA has met on several occasions to discuss the mechanics and the sample questions for the planned Subject test reformat;
WHEREAS, the Professional Regulatory Board of Architecture (the “PRBoA”) has consulted the stakeholders in the profession and has received positive responses;
WHEREAS, the PRC Rating Division has been consulted on the planned Subject test reformat and has found the suggested PRBoA reformat workable and in conformity with existing Commission practices and standards;
WHEREAS, the PRBoA has already conducted four (4) licensure examinations for architects (LEAs) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) in December 2007 and again in March 2009, in the form of the Foreign Board Licensure Examination for Architects (the “FBLEA”), a component of the Special Professional Licensure Board Examination (the “SPLBE”), upon the instruction of H.E. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo;
WHEREAS, the December 2007 FBLEA in KSA was a very successful pilot-test that allowed the PRBoA to reduce the number of LEA examination days from three (3) to two (2), a system which has already been applied in the Manila BLEAs since January 2008;
WHEREAS, the expected limited number of examinees at the FBLEA component of the four (4) SPLBEs scheduled in late November and early December 2009 at Al-Khobar (KSA), Jeddah (KSA), Doha (Qatar) and Abu Dhabi (UAE), presents another golden opportunity to pilot-test a non-drafting multiple design (cum site planning) problem for the Subject that will now be checked only by the OMR, thus substantially complying with Sec. 7 (m) of R.A. No. 9266;
WHEREAS, the conduct of the FBLEA is in keeping with the policy of holding BLEs by the PRC and the concerned Professional Regulatory Boards (PRBs) abroad to meet the special needs of Filipino overseas workers, as enunciated by H.E. Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo;
NOW THEREFORE, the PRBoA RESOLVES, as it is hereby RESOLVED, to substantially comply with Sec. 7 (m) of R.A. No. 9266 by pilot-testing a non-drafting multiple design (cum site planning) problem format for the Architectural Design and Site Planning Subject of the FBLEA component of the four (4) SPLBEs scheduled in late November and early December 2009 at Al-Khobar (KSA), Jeddah (KSA), Doha (Qatar) and Abu Dhabi (UAE);
RESOLVED, that the pilot-test for a non-drafting multiple design (cum site planning) problem format require the FBLEA examinees to answer a total of one hundred and fifty (150) questions under a multiple situational problem cum multiple choice format, the answers to which are to be read only by the OMR;
RESOLVED, that the pilot-test for a non-drafting multiple design (cum site planning) problem format for the 4 FBLEAs be administered over the ten (10) hours originally assigned for the old manual drafting test format;
FURTHER RESOLVED, to make representations with and/ or instruct the concerned PRC divisions to make the necessary adjustments and preparations to help assure the success of the pilot-test; and
FURTHERMORE RESOLVED, that if the pilot-test is again successful, the same Subject test reformat be applied in the 2010 Manila BLEAs and all FBLEAs of SPLBEs thereafter.
RESOLVED, FINALLY, that this Resolution shall take effect fifteen (15) days following its full and complete publication in the Official Gazette or any newspaper of general circulation in the Philippines; that concerned offices and divisions be directed to carry out the herein Resolution; and that copies hereof be furnished to all concerned persons for its information and dissemination to all stakeholders.

Done in the City of Manila on the 25th day of September 2009.
Original Signed
Original Signed Original Signed
Member Member
Original Signed
Secretary, Professional Regulatory Boards
Original Signed
Original Signed Original Signed
Commissioner Commissioner

file: REVa&cc09sepReso_DesFBLEA.




A startup construction and development company has decided that its newly acquired rectangular-shaped property of two thousand square meter [2,000.0 sqm, with a 120.0 meter (m) frontage] located in a part of Quezon City, Metro Manila recently zoned as high density residential (R-3). The property, an interior lot facing the south, uniformly slopes at 4.0% towards the street (a 16.0 m wide RROW with a 1.8 m wide sidewalk at each side).

The property shall host a proposed medium-rise RESIDENTIAL CONDOMINIUM Project, envisioned as a development with a Basement component, a Podium component and a Tower component. The adjacent lots at the sides and rear of the property and those across the street are all sites of existing 3-storey residences within family or corporate compounds.

A1. Test for Knowledge of General Compliances Relative to Site Planning

1. Under the 2004 Revised IRR of P.D. No. 1096 (1977 NBCP), what shall be the applicable percentage (%) of site occupancy (PSO) for the property?
a. 65%
b. 60%
c. 55%
d. 50%

B. Test for Knowledge of Site Planning

1. Given its orientation, what are the dominant sun-paths for the property?
a. SE to SW and NE to NW
b. SW to SE and NW to NE
c. SE to NW and NE to SW
d. SE to NW and NE to SW

C. Test for Knowledge of Space Planning)

1. Which of the following should NOT be provided at the basement component of the project?
a. parking (below grade or lower than the elevation of the street); driveways, ramps, etc.
b. elevator lobby and service stairs
c. telecommunications equipment room
d. garbage chute room and solid waste storage

D. Test for Knowledge of Architectural Design of Buildings

1. If the residential condominium units are to be air-conditioned, what shall be the minimum distance (in meters) between the finished floor line (FFL) and the finished ceiling line (FCL)?
a. 2.44
b. 2.24
c. 2.10
d. 1.90

E. Test for Knowledge of Structural Conceptualization

1. Which of the following structural elements can be erected along a side or rear property line if the property is resting on relatively flat terrain?
a. firewalls and perimeter walls
b. retaining wall
c. endwall
d. zocalo wall

F. Test for Knowledge of Architectural Interiors (AI)

1. Which of the following is NOT considered an architectural interior (AI) element for the project?
a. eaves
b. elevator lobby ceiling
c. unit party wall
d. bathroom floor
Read More

Monday, October 12, 2009

Designer Village Challenge 2009

The destruction caused by natural disasters such as typhoons has long been one of the major contributors to the perpetuation of poverty in developing countries like the Philippines. The suffering of the poor are amplified as climate change - reinforced storms lead to loss of life and property, and a costly halt in their way of life. They are plunged deeper into poverty when they are faced with the economic burden of having to rebuild their homes and livelihood. Many have been forced to relocate to urban centers, further congesting and expanding informal settlements. According to the Global Climate Risk Index, the Philippines is one of the ten most afflicted countries in the world in terms of the number of lives and property lost as a result of damage due to climate, and these are mainly in the form of increasing intensities of typhoons visiting the islands annually. In short, poverty and the lack of climate adaptability has proven to be a treacherous formula for poor communities.

Current mitigation and disaster management strategies are simply insufficient to shield the poor from the onslaught of the changing climate. Building disaster-resistant structures ahead of time would drastically reduce the impact of climate on poverty, bringing an end to the viscous cycle of: disaster – destruction – reconstruction. Moreover, the sense of security brought about by disaster-resistant structures would empower communities to uplift the quality of their lives as they gain more control over it. Without the fear that a storm can easily wipe away the lives that they have built, hopes and plans for the future may grow clearer and within reach.

This competition responds to the urgent need for radical adaptation. Designer Village Challenge calls for a masterplan and design of an eco-agro-tourism development for a rural community in the tropical hotspot of Camarines Sur, Philippines, a province that has repeatedly experienced catastrophic damage caused by strong tropical cyclones. The province of Camarines Sur has made it their mission to rise above it with progressive and pioneering projects that seek to alleviate the condition of its people. With the help of the global architecture community it believes that it can be an example of strength, resilience and innovative adaptability.

The top 3 winning designs will be awarded US $ 10,000, US $ 5,000 and US $ 3,000 respectively. The 1st prize winning design will be built by the Provincial Government in Camarines Sur as a prototype master planned community of 150 houses. Gawad Kalinga, the largest and most active non-government slum upgrading and rural community builders in Asia shall also build one of the winning designs. In addition, all design entries will be compiled and published into an encyclopedia of architecture and planning solutions for climate adaptability. The United Architects of the Philippines shall facilitate the competition and function as its secretariat.

The competition is open to all local and international architects, registered according to the relevant laws in their respective countries. All entrants are required to provide relevant professional registration on the registration form. Where an entry is made by a team of professionals, the team must be led by a person meeting the above criteria. That member must be indicated on the registration form as the entrant.


United Architects of the Philippines
53 Scout Rallos Street, Diliman, Quezon City
Telephone (63-2) 4126364, (63-2) 4126374
Fax (63-2) 3721796
Read More

Monday, October 5, 2009

On Storm Ondoy and What the Government May Consider Doing

by Armando N. Alli

A. A Tale of 2 Floods (During Storm Ondoy)

Storm Ondoy of that fateful Saturday, September 26, 2009, was reportedly not a strong storm and did not appear to be anything out of the ordinary. The rains started at nighttime but by mid-morning, there was no letup as a consistent amount of rain just poured and poured, and poured. We were to later learn that in about 10 hours, as much as 18 inches of rain fell on Metro Manila that day. We were probably lucky to have been there to find that out.

Many residents of Marikina City woke up that morning completely unaware of the life-changing and life-taking events that were about to transpire a few hours later. Provident Village was at a large bend in the Marikina River, just across the new SM mall. The floodwater that rushed into their homes that day did not leave them much time to save themselves and many were trapped and killed right in their very homes, ironically where they were supposed to be safe. This event was replicated many times over, although in lesser degrees and with less casualties, elsewhere in Marikina City and in Metro Manila. The water subsided sometime thereafter to reveal a swath of devastation and ruined lives. Mercifully, the Marikina River was able to do its job of taking the water away.

A few kilometers downriver, a slightly different kind of flooding took place in Pasig City and in Cainta and Taytay of Rizal Province but nonetheless as deadly and as destructive. The areas lying at the EAST bank of the Manggahan Floodway were inundated and many lives were also lost or ruined and placed at very great risk as a result. While the floodwaters in some areas receded or somehow found its way to the Manggahan Floodway (as in the west bank areas of the floodway), many areas remained under water for almost a week and that situation continues to this day. The drainage system of natural and man-made waterways was NOT working at all at the areas beyond the EAST bank of the Manggahan Floodway. If the water is not removed immediately, sickness and disease and maybe desperate human actions are soon expected to take their toll.

We need to get to the answers to these questions fast because new and stronger/ more destructive storms are already upon us and these will multiply the suffering of our countrymen. What happened? Did our National and Local Governments fail us? What were the DPWH, the DILG and the MMDA doing all of this time? Did our civil engineers in charge of our infrastructure, particularly the drainage system, fail to do their jobs? Is there anyone to blame? Or are we all to blame?

B. What needs to be reexamined in terms of State Policy?

Let us first examine State Policies that may have had something to do with what happened:

For whatever reason/ consideration, the DPWH has apparently relinquished the planning and management of the flood control system for the Metro Manila Area (MMA) to the MMDA, a practice that could be questioned as the same is a primary DPWH role; furthermore, it could be possible that the MMDA may not legally carry out such a mandate (not having been created by law), the main reason why its actions are often contested by the LGUs;

About 18 years ago, the Local Government Code (R.A. No. 7160) surprisingly and inexplicably allowed the LGU City/ Municipal Engineers (in charge of horizontal infrastructure) to simultaneously serve as Acting Building Officials (in charge of vertical infrastructure), a practice that persists to this day despite the non-exigency of the supposed situation/s that were used to justify Municipal/ City Engineers assuming such roles; there is NO check and balance in such as system; as Acting Building Officials, the said City/ Municipal Engineers are tasked to implement both the 1977 National Building Code of the Philippines (P.D. No. 1096) and the Water Code; ALL these functions are given to only one (1) individual to directly/ indirectly discharge the functions of up to thirteen (13) different state-regulated professions; lapses (deliberate or otherwise) and possibly knowing violation of the said laws by the said entities are key reasons why we could be having flooding problems;

The 1977 National Building Code of the Philippines (P.D. No. 1096) is a general and earlier law that must defer to stipulations under special and later laws such as the professional regulatory laws (PRLs); the DPWH is virtually usurping the functions of the Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC) and its Professional Regulatory Boards (PRBs) by unilaterally interpreting such PRLs without proper consultation; the DPWH is also issuing Memorandum Orders, with provisions that may be violative of PRLs or even standing Court Orders and mandating LGU Building Officials to immediately enforce the same, without benefit of public hearings/ consultation;

The State Policies on horizontal developments, particularly as these refer to open spaces, should be reviewed, amended and repealed since we need to conserve low-lying land for agricultural production i.e. use only the lower slopes of hills and mountains for land development rather than agriculturally productive, flat land and we visibly need to increase open spaces, particularly those that can hold or absorb large amounts of surface water;

The State Policies on population control/ management, and possibly on rural-urban migration may need to be revisited as we apparently have ineffective policies that have resulted in continuing population increase and movement/ displacement; and

The incineration of wastes is banned under the Clean Air Act; this may need to be revisited since we now have an incalculable amount of natural and artificial/ man-made waste and debris that need to be disposed of at the soonest time possible.

C. What can be done?

We now ask ourselves what can we now do or at least attempt to do?

As the DPWH is presently handling both horizontal and vertical infrastructure, there is now NO check and balance in the system i.e. the DPWH, through its LGU Building Officials (who are mostly Municipal/ City Engineers in an acting capacity as Building Officials) review and approve building plans that apparently consistently violate the 1977 National Building Code of the Philippines/ NBCP (P.D. No. 1096), the Fire Code of the Phils. (R.A. No. 9514, formerly P.D. No. 1185), the Accessibility Law (B.P. No. 344) and the Water Code, especially in terms of the mandated waterway easements, with apparent little regard for the consequences on both the natural and built environments, on the general population and on the end-users; if the DPWH cannot implement and enforce these laws, chief of which is P.D. No. 1096, which it is tasked to fully implement and enforce, then the DPWH is clearly NOT the proper agency to handle such matters;

the LGU City/Municipal Engineers which are under DILG control (acting as Building Officials under DPWH control) are presently in charge of both horizontal and vertical infrastructure for almost all LGUs nationwide; again, there is NO check and balance in such a system because it assumes that such a person (usually a civil engineer) is capable of understanding and discharging the component functions of about twelve (12) other state-regulated professionals, chief among them the Architects and Environmental Planners; the LGU City/ Municipal Engineers may have little to no training or knowledge about environmental planning and architecture;

As the DPWH and its LGU Building Officials (or City/ Municipal Engineers) are clearly incapable of enforcing the National Building Code of the Philippines (PD No. 1096) and the Water Code through the dismantling and removal of illegal structures on waterways and since the HUDCC appears to also be incapable of dealing with the physical problems of informal settlers, there may be need for a separate Department, the focus of which shall be in the areas of settlements planning, housing, land development, relocation programs for informal settlers and vertical structures;

We may therefore need to revisit earlier legislative proposals (if any) for the creation of a proposed Department of Planning and Housing, which MUST be the SOLE central authority on ALL physical, land and water use/ site planning, transportation planning and all vertical design regulatory functions for the National Government; the Environmental Planners and Architects who shall be assisting the policy makers are the state-regulated professionals needed for this job, probably not the Civil Engineers who are more adept at program/ project implementation;

So that its focus would NOT be divided, the DPWH must SOLELY concentrate on horizontal infrastructure i.e. the coordinative horizontal planning (with the proposed Department of Planning and Housing), construction and maintenance of roads, bridges, civil works, flood control structures and related structures, water supply and management, traffic management, waste management, protection of coastal areas and resources and related works;

the DPWH can help the other agencies implement vertical projects but the planning and design of such vertical projects should NOT be done by the DPWH due to its relatively poor record in vertical design i.e. school and government office buildings and related vertical public infrastructure that are poorly space-planned, that do not last and are not sensitive to the requirements of tropical and sustainable design, resulting in a waste of public funds;

The DPWH must be mandated to fully implement and enforce Secs. 302.3 & 4 of the 2004 Revised IRR of P.D. No. 1096 (the 1977 National Building Code of the Philippines) that LIMIT ONLY to Architects the signing and sealing of ALL ARCHITECTURAL documents for projects in the Philippines, provisions already fully harmonized in 2004 by the DPWH itself with the multiple provisions of the Architecture Act of 2004 (R.A. No. 9266) that say the same thing; there is NO TRO, NO injunction and NO pending constitutional question on either Secs. 302.3 & 4 of the 2004 Revised IRR of P.D. No. 1096 or on R.A. No. 9266; the May 2005 injunction on Secs. 302.3 & 4 of the 2004 Revised IRR of P.D. No. 1096 was already LIFTED/ DISSOLVED in January of 2008 (and affirmed in May 2009) by 2 immediately executory Court Orders but the DPWH Secretary, a civil engineer by training, still continues to allow 114,000 civil engineers/ CEs nationwide (who have very little or no knowledge of architecture) to sign and seal ARCHITECTURAL documents in violation of law and the 2 standing Court Orders; since there has been no TRO nor injunction issued by the Court of Appeals to date on Secs. 302.3 & 4 of the 2004 Revised IRR of P.D. No. 1096, the DPWH Secretary is now attempting to re-label/ reclassify ARCHITECTURAL documents as civil documents to continue to allow CEs nationwide to sign the re-labeled ARCHITECTURAL documents; if the CEs still continue to sign ARCHITECTURAL plans/ documents, then the problems exposed by Storm Ondoy shall persist all over the Philippines and continue to wreak havoc on our lives;

REPEAL the section of the Local Government Code (R.A. No. 7160) that inexplicably allowed the LGU City/ Municipal Engineers (in charge of horizontal infrastructure) to simultaneously serve as Acting Building Officials (in charge of horizontal infrastructure); there is NO check and balance in such a system; thereafter, Building Officials (who should be Architects by law, i.e. R.A. No. 9266) and City/ Municipal Architects must become mandatory for all LGUs; the Building Official is a fulltime job while the City/ Municipal Architects can be employed on a part-time basis;

the City/ Municipal Planning Officers must be an Environmental Planner or someone sufficiently trained by the Philippine Institute of Environmental Planning (PIEP) or possibly even certified by PRC PRB Board of Environmental Planning as capable of functioning as an LGU Planning Officer; in relation to this, Congressional action on the pending bill on environmental planning (to repeal P.D. No. 1308) should now be accelerated;

All architectural and physical/ land/ use planning programs and projects that are to be implemented/ undertaken under the Government Procurement and Reform Act (GPRA) of 2003 (R.A. No. 9184) must primarily involve Architects and Environmental Planners, not civil engineers; the Bid and Award Committee (BAC) Observers for such procurement activities (goods, services or infrastructure) must come primarily from the United Architects of the Philippines (UAP) or the Philippine Institute of Environmental Planners (PIEP) or other similar organizations that can effectively, impartially and professionally advise the BAC of the procuring entity; the Government Procurement Policy Board (GPPB) should implement and enforce the same the soonest as it is already provided for under their July 2009 Revised IRR for R.A. No. 9184;

Reconsider, amend or repeal the ban in incineration of solid wastes as provided for under the Clean Air Act, but preferably only if substitutes for plastics and non-biodegradable packaging materials are already in place; this could effectively reduce the need for dumpsites and the volume of waste that find its way into our waterways;

land is a scarce resource that should be wisely used; it is now possibly the time to consider and promote high density vertical developments rather than low density horizontal residential developments on converted farmland; it is also time to introduce such high density structures to fill up vacant or underutilized land that abound in our urban settlements (infilling) so that urban sprawl could be curtailed; these could have a great effect on the performance of our waterway and flood control systems;

as the resources of the State are finite, there should be greater and more effective population control policies/ mechanisms in place; otherwise, certain segments of society, particularly the middle class, will keep on supporting them involuntarily through the taxes that they pay; there may be need to accelerate quality legislative work on the pending reproductive health bills;

For the National Government to revisit the following Metro Manila physical flood control proposals advanced by various entities over the past 4 decades:

commission a short study (including a quick hydrology/ flood survey) or commence an official investigation to find out what really happened last 26 September 2009 and why floodwaters remain stagnant at Pasig, Cainta and Taytay; the DPWH must explain why the water in these areas are not being drained; the study must map out the extent of flooding that day and the following days; the investigation must necessarily also include finding out what happened during the great Iloilo City flood of 2 years ago;
mandate all LGUs to remove all impediments at all waterways, including the illegal structures of informal settlers i.e. which reduce the carrying capacity of waterways and contribute to debris formation;
temporarily allow the burning of wastes and debris to reduce the possible of these wastes finding their way back to the waterways;
de-silt the Laguna Lake to increase its holding capacity;
deepen the Pasig River to increase its carrying capacity and construct canals to connect its meandering sections to facilitate floodwater flow (if technically feasible);
upgrade the dismal capabilities of the NDCC for disaster response;

clear the Manggahan Floodway embankments of ALL illegal structures estimated at about 25,000 (including those erected by the LGUs) and of ALL its estimated 250,000 informal settlers (to be done by the DPWH, DILG/ LGUs, HUDCC, etc.);
redevelop the Marikina River bank/ bend areas identifiable as overflow areas or mini-flood plains so that these could properly serve their purposes in future storm events (by DPWH, DILG, MMDA, LGUs, etc.);
undertake a comprehensive hydrology/ flooding study for the Metro Manila Area and the Greater Manila Area (which includes Cainta, Taytay, Antipolo City, San Mateo and Montalban) so that their flood control systems could be integrated and so that upstream holding/ impounding areas that can delay the arrival of Sierra Madre storm waters/ surface runoff could be identified; we should be able to somehow harness/use all of these freshwater for our benefit; a series of new dam systems for impounding water for domestic or utility applications could also be proposed under such a study;
update the MMETROPLAN study of the 1970s;

i) construct the Paranaque Spillway that would relieve the Laguna Lake during storm events; if a right-of-way (ROW) could be found, the Paranaque Spillway could be integrated with other infrastructure developments i.e. related to transport, conveyance of utility systems, possible property development, etc.

reproduced from (source)
Read More

Random Posts



More Services

© 2014 Architecture Overload. Designed by Bloggertheme9 | Distributed By Gooyaabi Templates
Powered by Blogger.