Building Technology
Construction and architects
How we can make the new generation of architects involved more in construction activity and update their knowledge in construction activity and less dependent on engineers?

This can make them able to construct whatever they design and will be a big change in construction industry. I have started with my students and would like to make it for all. contact:
Ali Farid
Construction and architects
Ali, a great thought; although I believe architects should integrate and cooperate with the engineers. :)))
Frank John Snelling
Construction and architects
An architect should be the sole authority in building activities. Authority does not mean bossing around or management duties....

An architect must be a master of basic planning, stuctural design, building services and construction techniques. We always tend to shrug off our responsibilities as we are afraid of learning....if we cannot learn to take full charge of a building in the 5+ years of our course, then it's really a shame.

Now it's really not close to rocket science. It's simpler than that. Thus, we, the next generation of architects, must try to gain the knowledge ourselves and simply throw out other engineers from the building activities.

C'mon, at least let's keep this industry in our hands! Let's be bold enough to accept all challenges to stop the extinction of architects.
Sandip Chakrabarti
Construction and architects
Fully agree and technically, it would be very helpful in term of designing if we knew more about the detail, but I think we only can perfectly pass on more knowledge to the new generation but can't say less dependence upon engineers.

I always regard architects as the "leaders of the space," but bear in mind that's not an easy job, as the work scopes are too huge. Architects are able to provide a good design concept or design development, but this doesn't mean they're able to do the calculation for the beam/column or structural.

Architects have an expertise for design, they comment on and critique a space whereas engineers have the expertise to do all the calculations.

That's why we definitely need a team for every project and everybody play their role to run their work respectively. For each project, we still need the endorsements of the architect and engineers for certain submissions. Thus, I regard that the engineer and the architect play their respective roles and are both equally important for each project and can't substitute for one another.
Yg Hui
Construction and architects

Creating an architectural design is not only dependent upon technical calcuations. An architect should know and understand the properties and uses of all of the available materials because without such knowledge the architect becomes redundant.

One reason why I want to scream loudly when I see buildings made largely of reinforced concrete is that concrete is but one material option out of many.
The reason why buildings all over the world look the same is because they use the same amorphous material.

This unthinking misuse means cultural variations (created to agree with local conditions and materials) are being displaced by non-architectural uses of concrete.
Frank John Snelling
Construction and architects
This only addresses one potential aspect for your students. > > If your students are using CAD - then they could ultimately be using CAM in every appropriate application. Thoughtful, aesthetic, creative & cost effective building components & systems. Flexible for architectural appropriateness ~ Inspirational in result. CAD/CAM's benefits based on my own experience can be used by architects within their daily practice on a case by case basis, & by specific project need adapted. eliminate 90% of conventional hand labor for what was traditional hand craft........ 25-75% savings potential
assure quality - because as drawn = as built
protect your clients project integrity by eliminating substitution of materials or denigration of design integrity (fraud)
build a respect for contemporary, elegant building forms that inspire creating alternative solutions to off the shelf building componentry
enhance & continue the adaptive reuse or preservation of historical, traditional infrastructure & monuments in an architecturally appropriate manner
and create a niche market within a small or larger corporate architectural practice.

Using CAD into CAM is a natural extension of modern technologies that engineers have handed to architects in a collaborative environment. CAD (particularly AutoCad) was invented by engineers to cut simple geometry steel parts. The internal goal within the profession was to avoid crunching out g-code.

The influence of engineering on modern architectural practice has (my opinion) lowered the cost effective & visionary approaches of design driven architecture. If something is complex, the technical interface of engineers is an obstacle. They as a rule, only see plain & simple solutions. What if traditional architecture & ornament is the model to continue? Human creative nature is to create beauty in our environments. Curves are a part of design - and in modern architecture it is evolving into a thoughtful choice.

The change of how technology is used - particularly CAD & CAM - requires pioneering attempts & serious experimentation to change the engineering defined model. It falls into the lap of architects themselves to assure that this is done while at the drawing board. Sadly, the current results are rectilinear expressions for building. > > A couple of years ago, I had the fortune to speak at a conference on computerized fabrication for architecture on my studio's design practice, which is single proprietor without any employees. The strength of redefining the model is dramatic in its impact. My original focus was to change the choices in geometry available in artistic construction - using more potentially cost effective benefits of CAM. The underlying attempt at the conference that I made was to encourage other cad users - particularly within the practice of architecture to take a wider perspective & critical examination of how technology can be used. > > Currently the whole model is in flux & is driven by functional focus of engineers. Unless the technical minutia is mastered by the creative individual or team, and provided so that CAM shops can just plug & play .dxf files, the costs become prohibitive. Change for this, comes from within people who challenge and push the envelope. I had previously attempted to seduce the specialists in architectural metals to do the same, but they are as a rule less CAD savvy to start with, so architecture itself is a stronger force to define the future of how CAD & CAM are imaginatively adapted. > > For those who master it, the rewards will pave the path for others to follow. CAD & CAM if used creatively can greatly increase the quality of architectural design, build & fabrication. It also eliminates the middle person - saving the clients bottom line - while increasing greatly the architects share of the pot. Its practicality changes also, construction, contract & intellectual property law. There are no rules, and everything is now negotiable. I have experienced that first hand. > > There is a portion from the published proceedings "Making Machines Sing" posted at my website. It might be of some help. If I can be of assistance, feel free to contact me. Also, for every architecture student ~ spending time in the construction trades actually building things is very helpful. > -- Eileen Webb, May 27, 2006

Eileen Webb


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