As a client, at the scale of this practice, you will consistently receive direct and frank professional advice and recommendations as related to all aspects of a project.
And you will also receive the commitment of my personal presence (and long practice in on-the-feet public thinking) at whatever entitlement|public|commission meeting that the project may require. I believe my professional references will attest to the consistency of my civil but forceful advocacy for project values at these meetings. The tone of this advocacy has been foundational to my reputation as a design architect.
As with accomplished musical ensembles, the best architectural collaborations are those marked by:
natural, mutual affinities
urgency of spirit
I'm keenly interested in joining others to bring these qualities to project collaborations.
One of the benefits of a small practice, as this one initially will be, is that it provides the independence to be judicious - project by project - in one's choice of clients, colleagues, and consultants. To that end, after four decades of practice, I have established a network of colleagues, parallel architectural practices, intern-sources, and consultants with the capacity to respond as a team to project-specific requirements, nimbly, at any scale.
COLLABORATION AND PROCESS
There are a number of protocols that I have found helpful in building the kind of sustained collaboration necessary for a successful project:
Work-Plan Based Fees
Percentage and other rule-of-thumb fees are interesting benchmarks, but are also often arbitrarily unfair to either client or architect. By developing task|work plans with associated line item fees that are transparent and negotiable, architect and client can build a relationship that is initially founded on clarity and trust.
Prior to embarking on project programming, planning, or design, it is useful client and architect to establish - and document - a set of project values. These values are then shared with the entire client|design team. They establish consistent priorities and help guide the project's creative and economic decision-making from design through construction.
Much is implied in Le Corbusier's observation that, "Architecture is a patient search," including the ageless implication that architecture is as much a three-dimensionally experienced art as a science. The development, sharing, critique, and refinement of options is integral to this studio's method.
Depending on the nature and constraints of a project and its values, these options may be formalized in the initial architectural agreement (though I've often found questioned the efficiency and value of multiple high-end presentation options if the "writing is already on the wall" to the client|design team); or these options may emerge more organically as project design problems and issues reveal themselves.
In any event, the generation and team evaluation of options and their comparative qualitative and quantitative values will be continuous throughout a project - including the evaluation of issues that are inevitably encountered in the construction phase.
There are numerous established and emerging tools, media, and rituals for achieving enhanced project communication and coordination. These are all good; but they are useless unless they are guided by a fundamental team intention: Project communication (save for necessary issues of confidentiality) needs to be continuous and ubiquitous across all levels of the client|design team.