Dezeen Magazine

Building Design magazine to close print edition

Building Design magazine to end its print edition after 44 years

UK architecture magazine Building Design (BD) has become the latest casualty of the shift to online publishing and is to end its weekly print edition.

The formerly free magazine, which is sent to registered UK architects each week, will become an online-only publication within the next few weeks, 44 years after it was launched.

The move leaves the Architects Journal (AJ) as the UK's only weekly architecture magazine.

Commenting in his AJ column this week, Paul Finch, who edited BD for 11 years and is now the AJ's editorial director, said the news was "saddening".

"Journalism and publishing thrive in a competitive environment," Finch wrote. "The decision by Building Design’s (BD) owners to end the print edition in a few weeks’ time in favour of an online future is not, therefore, an occasion for gloating."

Building Design was launched in 1970 as a gossipy, news-driven rival to the more staid AJ and its monthly sister publication, Architectural Review. Its business model was based largely on recruitment advertising.

"Based on a free circulation and rising jobs market, BD was near-revolutionary in its approach to the world of architectural publishing as represented at the time by Architectural Press, which owned both the AJ and The Architectural Review," wrote Finch. "BD was a tabloid newspaper, rather than a glossy A4. It was newsy, gossipy and informal."

However, when approached by Dezeen, Building Design described the news as "speculation" and refused to comment.

Several specialist print magazines in the architecture and design sector have already fallen victim to the move online. Last month Italian architecture magazine Abitare announced that it would cease publishing its monthly print edition, although the owners have since stated that the title may be resurrected at some point in the future.

Other casualties include UK design title Design Week, which ended its weekly print edition in 2011 in favour of an online strategy; and graphic design title Grafik, which closed for the second time in 2011 but which is due to be resurrected as an online-only publication under new owner Protein.

Building Design has nurtured many of the UK's best architecture writers over the past few decades. Former staff and contributors include Oliver Wainwright, Deyan Sudjic, Martin Pawley and Ian Martin.