Monday, January 03, 2005

Crabbicus Maximus

Written at 11:00am:
Even though I don’t get to do a whole lot of design work myself, boy, am I ever a critic. It’s no secret that I despise symmetry. If you were a designer of ancient Greek temples, with a pristine, virgin site and no context to work with, sure, symmetry was great. However, in present-day projects, symmetry gets you into trouble nearly every single time. So many times, I have seen designers insist that something has to be symmetrical, only to end up fighting with it for the duration of the project design schedule.

The project I’m working on now is no different; it just doesn’t want to be symmetrical!! Our rentable area numbers are crap, and the tenant space doesn’t work, yet the designer keeps trying to force symmetry.

Further, the owner has suggestions about how we could fix some of the problems with the design, but these suggestions won’t work if the building remains symmetrical. Now, in order to preserve precious symmetry, the designer is talking about doing some kind of funkiness with the structure that the structural engineer’s going to scream about. The PA is hesitant to throw out the healthcare planner’s tenant design because it’s already been shown to the tenant. Never mind that the core and shell of the building don’t work.

I have ideas about how to fix some of the problems, yet I keep getting drowned out by everybody- the designer, the project architect, the project manager, and the healthcare planner- because I have no seniority. I never have been very good at making myself heard. Nobody is going to listen to the youngest and newest one on the team. They never do. Yet, I still fight the urge to give up, to just shut up and be the CAD monkey; even though it is becoming painfully apparent that is my expected role.

For almost the entirety of this project, I’ve felt like I’ve been spinning my wheels. I have drawn and redrawn so many versions of the design, I’ve lost count.

Written at 1:00pm:
PA and PM took me with them when they took the client to lunch. I am, for a time, pacified again as I sit down to draw the latest version (number 284, I believe?) of the core and shell.

Nothing shuts me up like a free lunch.

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