Are Architects on their way out?

After having a chat with some long term friends/colleagues/partners in crime I raised the question – What have architects done that makes them so unpopular with clients, the public and with contractors? This came about in the round about way from the observation that more is being asked of the Architect at an earlier stage for which there is no change in fees. This could be due to a misalignment of the plan of work to emerging practices such as VDC/BIM or is it that for 80% of the built environment clients are going straight to the contractor or the contractor is bidding for the work after buying up an architectural team? Therefore phasing out an architectural practice altogether? The RIBA plan of work, free structure and contracts no longer fit in with the requirements for more work up front for BIM/VDC to work. Along with earlier appointment of consultants. Also there is a trend growing where the client is employing a 3rd party to build the 3D model of the building from the information given to them by the design team as a means to protect themselves from “hidden” variations where items may well be missing from the design. Align this with contractors wanting to have a degree of certainty with every contract and it looks like the days of the Architect for “most” projects could be numbered.

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About Shaun Farrell

I have been involved in the construction sector since 1986 and over the years I have seen things change dramatically. Much of the change has been directly as a result of technology. This blog will be about the key combinations of People, Process and Technology. Any views expressed here are strictly my own.
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