I woke up this week and realized that September is only eight days away. Where did the summer go? I had a great summer. I never said it was not a busy summer, but it was great. The family and I did a lot of fun things this summer, like going to Wrigley Field, walking many golf courses, enjoying little league baseball games, visiting the Science and Industry Museum and spending a lot of time at the lake. But, one of my favorite summer highlights was seeing my 8 year old grandson get more confident on the wakeboard. Even though I experienced all these things and enjoyed them, I had to stop and think why in the midst of a busy schedule was it a good summer? It is kind of like experiencing a good building; you don’t always know why you like it; you just know you do.
Dan Gagen, our senior designer at PDMi, reminds me often that a well-designed building is experienced from three vantage points and that is what makes it pleasing to a person. Those vantage points are:
- Street Scale: This is where you are driving down the road at 55 MPH and you see the building. At that point you are experiencing the Massing / Colors / Proportions of the building.
- Parking Lot Scale: This is where you are still in your car and are entering the parking lot. At that point you are experiencing the Textures / Scale of the building elements / Landscaping & Signage of the building.
- People Scale: This is where you are walking up to the building. At this point you are experiencing Details of the building elements / Entry Statement / Warmth of the space.
If all three are designed well and fitted together correctly you will love the building, but may never know why, and that is an architect’s goal. A sign of a great building is one that you like being in, but does not over power you. Like a good summer – you really enjoy it, for so many reasons!
We would love the opportunity of designing your next building so that you, and the many that will come through its doors, can enjoy it. I look forward to your call…