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Architecture Industry Watch

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Crain's is taking the pulse of the architecture industry today (behind its paywall), and the checkup is encouraging. Three new firms have located downtown in the past several weeks: Forum Studio, Ratio Architects, and HKS Architects. All are successful firms from other cities who wish to raise their profile by expanding to the country's second-most prominent architectural stage. Where they've leased and what they've leased is less crucial than how many out-of-work Chicago architects and engineers they'll employ. Of further intrigue is whether or not Forum's parent company, the much larger St. Louis-based Real Estate developer Clayco, will follow its child to the promised land. It doesn't hurt our chances that Clayco's CEO has just moved his personal residence here. Among the local architects these firms have already signed on are such respected names as Craig Smith, Kapil Khanna, Evan Jahn, and Lucien Lagrange. And, naturally, the old post office development scheme (or, fiction) gets another plug as Lagrange is said to be involved. [Crain's, photo: flickr/Seth Anderson]