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News: Reid backed over compulsory directory e-mail addresses

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Riba director general Alex Reid has won an endorsement of his idea to bar riba members from the practice directory if they don't have an e-mail address.

Reid conducted a survey on the matter sent to over 4000 registered practices. Although only 181 questionnaires have been returned, 64 per cent supported the idea of an e-mail address requirement for registered practices by 1 January 2000, while 8 per cent supported it by the later date of 1 January 2001. In his report to January's riba council, Reid explains that the cost of e-mailing information is one thousandth that of posting it. The issue will be fully discussed in March.

Reid also revealed that the Institute is to improve 66 Portland Place to gain greater economic return from the building through better use of space and create a better image for the building. Chris Williamson and Simon Allford are advising on the scheme, along with house architect Allies and Morrison and honorary fellow David Rosen. Improvements may be funded through an arts lottery bid. Meanwhile Alicia Pivaro, new director of the architecture centre, has reorganised its programme thematically in what will now be called the riba Architecture Gallery.

Riba president David Rock has had a meeting with culture minister Alan Howarth to discuss the role of consultants, or Civic Architects, in urban settlements. Howarth has asked for a report on the matter.

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