Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Questions (413)

Nicky McFadden


413. Deputy Nicky McFadden asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if a grandfather clause will be inserted into new legislation to enable architects who have many years of experience to be permitted to refrain from sitting exams in order to be registered with the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland; if an alternative method of registering experienced architects could be devised; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30152/13]

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Written answers (Question to Environment)

Part 3 of the Building Control Act 2007 sets out the statutory arrangements for the registration of architects. A variety of routes to registration are provided for in the Act, including specific provision (under section 22) for the registration of practically trained persons who may have no academic qualifications or formal education in the discipline of architecture but who had been performing duties commensurate with those of an architect for a period of ten years prior to the commencement of the Act. This route to registration which is specifically designed for experienced, practically-trained, persons does not involve sitting examinations.

I share the concerns of those who feel that the number of applications to date from practically-trained architects is less than might reasonably be expected notwithstanding the provision in that regard in the Act. I have recently asked Mr. Garret Fennell, Solicitor, who is currently serving as the Chairperson of the Admissions Board relevant to the register of Architects, to carry out an independent review of the experience to date in relation to the operation of the register with a view to identifying any further improvements that can be made at this point. I have particularly asked for his recommendations or views on how the registration of practically trained architects can be further encouraged.