For All Those Impacted by Superstorms and Hurricanes: Make sure an AIA Architect is part of your rebuild team!

Make sure an Architect is part of your rebuild team!

Recently, potential clients asked me to go see their home after it was impacted by hurricane Sandy.  Like many other houses in their community, their roof was severely damaged by a fallen tree.  Luckily, no one was injured.  I let them know that after the tree was removed I would return to evaluate the damage and make recommendations for repairs (with help from my structural consultant, if needed).  By the time the tree was removed, the cleanup crew was completed with their remediation work, and the contractor made his “temporary repairs” it was decided (without any input from an Architect) that minor repairs would be made.  (These decisions were made by the Owner with input from the Insurance Adjuster and Contractor.)

Then, I received the “follow up call” from the client asking me to certify the job — the local inspector requires a signed and sealed letter by a registered architect or professional engineer stating that the home is suitable for human habitation — I asked the potential clients why they started the repairs without any professional input and they said that everything happened so quick and they trusted their Adjuster and Contractor.  I let them know that I was unable to certify the project because of my lack of involvement in the project.  I was never given an opportunity to assets the damage after the tree was removed and before the Contractor started his repairs — how could I?  No professional can attest to repairs that are done without his or her knowledge.

I urge readers to let their friends and loved ones know that when they are rebuilding or repairing their houses or places of business or worship that they should consult a design professional – their local AIA Architect (start by going to aia.org where you can learn about the value of an Architect, and get a listing of local Architects).

Do not trust anyone that pretends to be an Architect or give false advice about your project.  Even if their advice is accurate they are not legally qualified to give advice or certify the repairs.  It is important to trust your team — your Contractor, Adjuster, local building inspectors, etc., but make sure you don’t leave the Architect out of the mix.

An Architect is responsible to safe guard the public safety and is qualified to certify that a space is suitable for human occupancy.

 

Funny thing is that this potential client wanted me to give him an opinion on what was done and whether it was safe to move his family back in.  I replied, that I do not have X-Ray vision.  If I was given an opportunity to see the space, I would have been able, as a qualified professional, to offer recommendations, provide construction drawings, observe the repairs and/or construction process, and ultimately certify that the work met my specification requirements,

I hope that this post is circulated to those in need, so they better understand the process– don’t leave the Architect out until the end.  The Architect will work with you to ensure that you are given the most thoughtful care with your investment, not just a quick fix.  (Think: Am I being given the best care my family deserves or am I just another claim/client on a list?  Will the repairs meet code?  Will the repairs hold up in the future?  Have I missed an opportunity to make improvements to better safe guard my family from future events? Who is responsible to protect the public safety and wellbeing?)

We would love to hear from you on what you think about this post.  We sincerely appreciate all your comments.

If you like this post please share it with friends. And feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss ideas for your next project!

Sincerely,
Frank Cunha III
I Love My Architect – Facebook


FC3 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN, LLC
P.O. Box 335, Hamburg, NJ 07419
e-mail: fcunha@fc3arch.com
mobile: 201.681.3551
direct: 973.970.3551
fax: 973.718.4641
web: http://fc3arch.com
Licensed in NJ, NY, PA, DE, CT.

Advertisements

@FC3ARCHITECTURE – New Mixed Use Project in Newark, NJ

FC3ARCHITECURE is pleased to announce it’s latest project “On The Boards.”

This time it’s a three-story mixed-use restoration project located in the heart of Newark.

BEFORE

  • The design is comprised of 2 floors of 30 residential units (open lofts) over brand new commercial retail space.
  • The structural frame of an existing factory remains, the rest of the building is rejuvenated from the inside and out.
  • Code Upgrades include – new elevator cab, retrofitted guard rails and handrails, fire alarm and security system, new utilities throughout.
  • All windows will be retrofitted with energy efficient thermally insulated units.
  • Exterior envelop will be upgraded to meet current energy requirements.
  • Energy efficient cooling and heating system with Energy Star appliances.

Click Here to see more projects.

Also Check Out:

We would love to hear from you on what you think about this post. We sincerely appreciate all your comments.

If you like this post please share it with friends. And feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss ideas for your next project!

Sincerely,
Frank Cunha III
I Love My Architect – Facebook

FC3 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN, LLC
P.O. Box 335, Hamburg, NJ 07419
e-mail: fcunha@fc3arch.com
mobile: 201.681.3551
direct: 973.970.3551
fax: 973.718.4641
web: http://fc3arch.com
Licensed in NJ, NY, PA, DE, CT.


From Paper and Pencil to Reality Through Collaboration

One of the last two projects I worked on while at Cubellis Ecoplan (now Environetics) is currently under construction (below).  The other project I was fortunate to design was the Delaware Welcome Center (featured here).  I was only involved in the design and design development of both projects (not the construction) but they were fun to work on with the other team members.  As the lead Project Manager I collaborated with others because I feel that through collaboration the best product can be delivered to the client.  The sketch below was the result of about a work week worth of sketching with various people around the office.  Every line and every curve was meticulously thought out and designed to be exactly where it needed to be (sort of like when Kahn said, What does this brick want to be?).  Although it was unfortunate that the timing of my departure occurred before I could be involved with wrapping up the construction drawings and overseeing construction, it is still rewarding to see the progression of the construction of this 45,000 SF project at one of NJ’s largest Universities.  There is no feeling like the one you get watching the lines you drew on a piece of paper become reality right before your eyes.  Although I’m not involved in construction I quietly admire all the contractors and design team members that are helping my design become a reality.  Without the collaboration of many this vision would have never been able to be executed.

Finley Hall – Under Construction

Finley Hall – Design by Frank Cunha III

Finley Hall

Click Here to Read More about this building.

Also Check Out:

We would love to hear from you on what you think about this post. We sincerely appreciate all your comments.

If you like this post please share it with friends. And feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss ideas for your next project!

Sincerely,
Frank Cunha III
I Love My Architect – Facebook

FC3 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN, LLC
P.O. Box 335, Hamburg, NJ 07419
e-mail: fcunha@fc3arch.com
mobile: 201.681.3551
direct: 973.970.3551
fax: 973.718.4641
web: http://fc3arch.com
Licensed in NJ, NY, PA, DE, CT.