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Articles

Should an Architect be Your First Call?



The short answer to this question is, “Yes!”

 

We strongly suggest that you call an architect as soon as the idea of a building project of any kind is being considered. The earlier an architect is involved, the more value he or she can bring to your project. Many important decisions that affect the design of a project, its competitive edge in the market and impact on the end users, the site design and/or selection, as well as opportunities that might be leveraged from the existing built environment, are made at the early stages.

 

In an unscientific poll of area business owners and managers, we were surprised to hear that if they were tasked with the planning of a new building or expansion project for their company, an architect wasn’t the first person they’d call. Responses varied with regard to whom they would contact, but the majority of the initial questions being asked focused on costs and schedules, yet lacked insight regarding the importance of early design involvement and the value it can bring to the overall building project.

 

Why is an Architect your best first call?

Aside from being able to help you determine your budget and potential timeline early on in the project, architects are uniquely qualified to bring together the best of science and art, organization and creativity, pragmatism and whimsy. They are design and building experts who have specialized knowledge about everything to do with form and space: function, aesthetics, costs, scheduling, construction methods; even considerations of the built environment on user’s productivity and psychology. This “big picture” experience combined with the ability to design and manage a project down to the most important of details, allows them to bring additional value to your project early on that goes beyond preliminary budget and schedule considerations.

 

What kind of information can I receive from an Architect?

In addition to the specialized experience noted above and beyond the basic project cost information that you might get from a general contractor or construction manager, an architect can advise you on everything from competitive site evaluations, financing options in the marketplace, fundraising or public support campaigns (if needed), competitive bidding opportunities, design opportunities, planning for specific equipment needs, historic preservation, building materials, finishes, project management, landscaping, interior design, and much more.

 

Is there a charge?

Architects will often agree to provide a preliminary consultation at no charge in order to explore your project idea. If you would then wish to receive additional design services from the architect, a proposal would be provided. Don’t let the fear of perceived higher costs keep you from making the initial call. A consultation will answer many of the questions you may have about your project and should make it fairly obvious whether or not the project is something an architect can help you with.

 

We encourage you to call us first. Make us the first member of your project team. We are confident that we will provide creative insights that will provide substantial value to your finished project.