December’s edition of the AJ looks at how the older generation are living out their autumn years in the twenty-first century. Our three fascinating building studies of projects by Mole Architects, Mæ and Witherford Watson Mann take inspiration from the almshouse, while making subtle efforts to subvert this model’s tendency to put older people in need out of sight and out of mind.
In News, we present the results of a salary survey, which reveals that architects were handed an effective pay cut in 2023, while an accompanying essay by nimtim’s Tim O’Callaghan asks how architects can halt the race to the bottom that has created a culture of low fees and salaries.
In a packed Culture section we visit the Georgian Illuminations at Sir John Soane’s Museum, and the Unbuild exhibition at the Drawing Room; plus regular columnist David Grandorge offers his thoughts on the use of plastics in construction.
This month’s Opinion pieces are by Kunle Barker – who argues that sustainability categories within architecture awards should be ditched – and Martha Dillon, who shares her thoughts on Rowan Moore’s new book Property.
Lastly, festive cheer is provided in a Building of the Year quiz, AHMM Sketch Club and Hellman, who wishes AJ subscribers a HappAI Xmas.