I truly believe that architecture is an art of avoiding missing opportunities. The architect has a huge responsibility, he quite literally lays the foundation of his clients lives. While a good building design greatly enhances the quality of life of it's users, in the same way a bad building can have a detrimental effect on it.
With clever and sensible detailing and specification of the right materials during the design stage of a project, future problems and excessive running costs during the life span of the building can be eliminated. For me the right solution to a given architectural problem is always preferable than the quick and cheaper 'fix'.
- Good detailing
'The devil is in the detail'. For a project to be successful it is not enough to look nice on paper or to impress on a big scale, it should also be fully resolved on a small scale - in its fine detailing. Not only can clever detailing save the client from unnecessary hurdles in the future, it can also add to the overall experience of a building.
- Good workmanship
The architects' responsibility is not over when the final 'For Construction' drawings are handed over to the builders. Mistakes are always bound to happen on site, so a thorough control of the building works is necessary. Site supervision by the architect should take place at least twice weekly especially during the more crucial stages of the building process.
- Towards the existing urban fabric and its surroundings
I believe that architects not only have a responsibility towards their clients, but also towards the built or natural environment around their projects. I strongly believe that any new building should be giving something back to the place it belongs to by working in tandem with the existing urban or natural fabric. It should never be a 'monolith'. Key Urban Design principles should always be incorporated in the design of all but mostly on larger scale projects.
- Towards the old buildings and our built heritage
A city is not only what it offers its users today with its fancy modern buildings, it is also its people and the memories that they associate with their hometown. Every couple remembers where they kissed for the first time, everyone remembers the old neighbourhood where playing out in the street was the norm not too many years ago. You can call me a dreamer, but I strongly believe that a city should not be changed beyond recognition in the name of 'progress'. Finding new uses for the old buildings* can work in tandem with the newbuilts and not against them.
* Please visit my facebook group 'Save the built heritage of Cyprus'