I really enjoy looking at Architecture. That is probably a good thing since I spent most of my life knee deep in it. Actually, it more like neck deep. When I get my new Architecture magazines, I look at the pictures (unlike other magazines where I read the articles). There is always something inspiring about them. I’ve done some projects, that I feel is really good about, I’m just not egotistical and work in creating the clients vision.

But what is the “dream” project? I’ve always though having a client where money is no object in creating their vision. By the way, this has never happened in my career. But at the same time, I’m not sure I could design that way. To many years of working in a budget and making the most out of less. The real challenge is when the vision is greater than the budget. That’s when the Mr. Scott from Star trek mentality comes in. “The Miracle Worker”

It’s tough having to bring the client back to reality. But, hopefully we can get the vision on paper ready for bid. So, when do I address the budget short fall? Right up front, or as close as possible to the beginning of design. Even if I start off with basic cost data and use square foot per dollar costing. This gives a sense early on if we are even close to the budget.

The front end of a project is ‘fun’, I like to get the concepts together and make the clients vision come to life. But what happens if the client doesn’t have a vision and I don’t have an ego. No, it is not a stalemate. I work closely with them in understanding how they do their business. This lets Architecture work for them and not me.

Once we get over this hurdle, and I say we, because I believe in true collaboration early on. I will use recent data to get sense of project cost. Holding back on the ‘out of this world’ design concepts. But at the same time, delivering more than a box painted grey. I will focus on the what is important to the client and the flow of the architecture. Using common construction techniques in a unique way. There have been some fun and existing projects over the years, all with limitations.

I keep waiting for that “dream” project. But I do like the daily challenges of the real world of architecture. Working within the limits of the client’s needs and budget. Finally, at the end of the day, the best projects are the ones that pay.

…and now for something completely different.
'Stewardesses' is the longest word that is typed with only the left hand.