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What Does an Architect Do?

written by: Raunekk•edited by: Lamar Stonecypher•updated: 11/28/2009

An architect is a trained professional who deals with planning and designing of of any construction process. This article will describe what an architect does and the qualities he must have.

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    Architecture is a process, profession, or documentation for the purpose of designing and constructing buildings. An architect is a professional who plans, designs and reviews the construction, adaptation, and establishment of buildings and land with reference to functional and aesthetic requirements. A designer of structures, an architect is a person who has undergone special training to acquire the required skills.

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    What Does it Takes?

    An architect considers design, budgetary needs of the client, pitfalls of the location and materials, and requirements of the people who would be using it, combining these factors into an exclusive and balanced design solution. A genuine architect has to have the right decision making skills, creativity, and team leadership. Though, he is a licensed professional with specialized skills to design cityscapes, he doesn’t merely build them, but also holds the responsibility of protecting the health, safety, and welfare of the public at large.

    An Architect focuses on three important parameters- function, safety, and looks- while making a cardboard or plastic model of the building. Depending on the use of the place, the number of people, and the type of activities involved, the plan is laid out on the paper. For instance, a hospital will need more rooms and an airport would require large halls to accommodate huge numbers of people at the same time. Thus, the architect ensures that the architecture is of full use to all the people using it. Furthermore, the architect has to be certain that the building that he has designed can withstand calamities such as fire or earthquakes.

    artitect working 

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    What Does the Process Includes?

    An architect needs to pen down his ideas in the form of sketches and drawings before he begins constructing a building. Basically, he would make a sketch and test its feasibility. Using a computer, he can also make a three dimensional model of the structure to be constructed. Later, he would design the scheme and seek the permission for planning it out. He would also physically study the location and would need photographs of an already existing building as reference. After a detailed designing process, the contractor ensures a warrant from him. On issuing a tender action, the activities for the operation takes place on the desired location. The architect will have to closely review the construction company to ensure that the the structure is built as per the plans. It is highly recommended that the architect carry professional indemnity insurance for the same reason.

    A well thought-out work would not only enable the architecture to be safe, but would also make the building look creative. For this reason, an architect would decide on the different aspect of placing the rooms, their sizes, and electrical layouts, details of stairs, windows, walls, and open spaces. However, with different architects, there would be differences in the designing styles. Some architects might make more use of circles and some other might use more curves.

    sketches sketches 2 

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    What Characteristics Must an Architect Have?

    An architect should always keep in mind the dos and don’t regarding environmental conditions, cost restrictions and demands of the customers. From the educational viewpoint, the architect must possess negotiating skills, analytical skills, and excellent interpersonal skills. Besides a relevant professional qualification, it is highly desirable if he holds at least three years post qualification experience in architecture and has highly developed technical drawing skills. Presently, there are three major steps involved for a person to become an architect: obtaining an accredited degree in architecture, participating in an Intern Development Program ,and passing the architecture registration exam.

    An architect, over and above the designing of the building, also works on design alterations to existing buildings and makes suggestions about the restoration and conservation of old properties. Thus, like the scientists and artists, an architect renders his creation with traits that are pleasant to look at, comfortable to work in and strong enough to be safe from any kind of natural or man made disasters.


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