An Architect’s job is all about design; it is about taking a client’s vision and translating that vision into something that can be actualized. But good design cannot happen without good pre-design and due diligence—two keys we focus on at WJCA. Indeed, one of the reasons that we have been able to collaborate successfully with so many clients throughout North America and around the world is our dedication to laying the appropriate foundation for their projects. Just as builders construct foundations before moving ahead with the rest of the building process, our architects know that they need to plan as meticulously as possible before they even start drawing out their designs. That way, WJCA can deliver better designs, shorter timelines, and greater transparency—among other benefits.
The Value Points: Why Pre-Design Matters
So how does WJCA create value by focusing so seriously on pre-design? Here are a few of the benefits we deliver to clients by being so meticulous about the early planning stages of our projects:
- Project phasing: Every single architectural project we do at WJCA plays out on a phase-based schedule. We design each project in phases, which helps us establish a project timeline and then stick to it. In many cases, phasing helps us exceed our deadlines and complete projects early. It also helps with transparency, because our clients know exactly what to expect regarding project milestones and completion dates.
- Clearing up complications ahead of time: You can avoid delays and complications in architectural design and project construction with proper planning and foresight. WJCA’s commitment to pre-design and due diligence is essential in part because it helps us clear up complications ahead of time so that the project can then roll forward without issue. From conducting site inspections to chatting with building authorities about permits, approvals, and other regulatory factors, our due diligence processes go a long way towards ensuring that our clients won’t have to deal with a bumpy road moving forward.
- Meeting client expectations: When it comes to serving a client with an architectural design, WJCA’s job can be complex and challenging. We are not just trying to adhere to the vision of one person. In most cases, we are coordinating with multiple vendors, departments, or stakeholders to ensure that our building designs are meeting their disparate (and sometimes even contradictory) needs. Our past project portfolio shows our versatility, from the vertical people movement requirements of the Uniqlo stores we have designed to the high-level sound separation requirements that Samsung has. We can meet these very different requirements for our clients not just because of our architectural experience, but also because of the value we place on pre-design. We view our clients more as partners than as customers, and we try to communicate with as many stakeholders as possible to make sure we are creating something that will meet needs, address pain points, and protect the client’s overall brand and vision.
Simply put, many people talk about architects and their work in terms of design. Certainly, design matters—from style to skill to experience to the final aesthetic of the finished product. However, nothing that is great about design could exist without pre-design, and it is in the area of pre-design that WJCA most excels.