From the beginning of development, balance competing objectives against the goals of the project to ensure financial success. Make the project a profitable business.
The sooner necessary changes of any kind are made, the less costly they will be to the project. Ergo, make changes as early as possible and move on.
Projects with significant creative development are often messy and complex. Organize and set expectations early.
Allow more creative freedom in early stages of development. Then reign in overall efforts as design progresses and the cost of change increases. Then focus. Freeze design and stay on track.
Get the right people to the table. Then share information and ensure others share as well. Foster an environment in which ideas are generated and everyone collaborates.
Every day make progress toward completion. Take one step at a time. The mountain doesn't care, so you must. Just beyond that ridge lies the top... Climb!
Developing and managing architectural and specialty design (e.g., exhibits, shows, attractions and the like) requires intensive research, creative thinking, a wide range of specialized talent and a disciplined approach. For Affinity, the process includes establishing substantial coordination with the architect of record (AOR, sometimes called the Lead Design Consultant or LDC), tracking action items and meeting deadlines. Affinity’s team starts by establishing a clear scope of work and a plan for achieving it under a schedule. We meet weekly (or more often, if necessary) to exchange information and review select issues, prioritizing according to near term and long term objectives. After every meeting, we itemize action items in detail and follow through with their execution.
Central to the iterative design process is our focus on the purpose of each major element and its contribution to the overall design aesthetic. Each element must serve its specific purpose and appropriately contribute to the central theme of the guest experience. To develop the design our team will conduct research, do analysis and create design sketches, all of which are essential to properly sort good options from bad ones. In addition, mock-ups will be required to demonstrate potential technical solutions and assist in the refinement of design.
In addition, Affinity’s team will assemble a design package during schematic design phase that includes coordination with facility design and other technical design documents, such as audio-video and controls design, lighting design and animal life support system equipment. Thus, design drawings will provide the necessary information for the architecture and their engineering team to develop construction drawings that can be permitted. As noted above, Affinity will work with the owner’s design team iteratively and methodically during schematic design, design development and the development of construction documents to ensure they are coordinated and there is harmony among the systems and elements of the project.
We approach every project as a collaboration. Regular meetings and workshops are required to ensure the project is developing appropriately and according to schedule. Thus, the Affinity team will work with clients to develop a coordinated schedule that integrates the work of all stakeholders and consultants at appropriate intervals. In addition, the scope of responsibilities will need to be reviewed, updated and refined during and at the conclusion of each design phase. To that end, the Affinity team will lead the development of a responsibility matrix that articulates roles and responsibilities among and between all members of the project team.
No single approach can cover every project no matter how large or small. However, we apply guidelines to ensure the project will be developed in intervals with distinct phases that establish progressive information about the project. Such phases include: