In 2008, when large-scale projects were no longer landing on their desks, Norman Morgan, AIA, and Brent Sparks, AIA, took to the road for work—literally. The two architects jumped in their Ford pick-up truck and began to drive across the state in the hopes of something turning up, Luciana Lopez reports in Reuters. And eventually it did, in the form of a rural hospital renovation. But this wasn’t exactly the type of work that the two architects, employed at the Fort Worth branch of HKS, were used to.

Lopez reports:

The hospitals in the Texas countryside were more like the work HKS did in its infancy, rather than the work the global firm was doing in dozens of countries right before the credit crunch, said Ralph Hawkins, the HKS chief executive officer.

But even as architects continue to struggle to find work, they seem to be reaching the closing chapters of the book on hard times. The AIA’s billing index marked rising business for a fifth straight month in March. If it keeps that activity level up, Lopez writes, Morgan and Sparks’s story may soon just be a narrative of the past.

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