-If we have done the previous steps carefully, it wouldn’t be necessary that we ever visited the construction site. Everything would be solved beforehand in such a way that no doubts would appear during the materialisation process, and all documents would present the information in a clear and complete way, adapted to the knowledge and language of each of the agents involved. We would have designed with the site in its wholeness, although separated from it.
-Would that be really possible?
-It would be possible in principle. However the amount of eventualities that can occur in any given building process make this highly unlikely in reality.
-The more we anticipate the construction process, the less problems we’ll face during its materialisation, and what’s more important, it’ll be easier to incorporate improvements and modifications as we go. The better our plan and our technical knowledge is, the easier it will be to improvise when needed.
This doesn’t mean that it is better to make all decisions during the design process, before actually starting its materialisation. Sometimes, a specific commission might need that many decisions are taken on site, but then we will have to work with even more open systems, that allow changes and modifications without presenting the typical problems of budget increase, delays, etc. If the process is a design-build one, it is easier to explore this second possibility.
There is no recipe or law we can follow; every project, every story, is different. It is important that we integrate the means of production at the beginning of our plan. Every unexpected internal or external problem carries a potential solution to actually improve what we thought during the previous phases of the process. Most of the time, wrong design decisions bring problems during the construction process or afterwards. Each weak decision contains in itself a potential evolution of the project, which will help improve its performance. It is very hard to disguise these mistakes, the design process is, in the end, very transparent. Because when designing and building a building, there is right and wrong choices, decisions and criteria.
-All these guidelines are meant to be adjusted, broken and questioned in each new project.