The architect nailed it. Lack of co-ordination is the thing that balloons costs and extends programmes. The more contractors and consultants that are hired and fired the more complex that co-ordination becomes. Nothing to do with the designs, which should always be the very best we can achieve. Once again design is being blamed when the real culprits are those who crafted the contractual frameworks leaving vast chasms between each contract that contractors often exploited, and the designers (employed by them for only a stage or two to dumb down the design) vainly struggled to co-ordinate and fill. Until designers have a consistent and central role in co-ordination at construction stage this will continue to happen on large projects.
Isn't this a little premature? The Public Enquiry has yet to take place and the ARB are already chomping at the bit to pass judgement. At least wait until the facts are known. It would be great if the board were as keen to haul Architectural practices over the coals for failing to adequately train and support their young architects instead of exploiting them.
P Latham, I'm sure most architects are well aware of their duty of care. We are well regulated and often the first target of criticism. But you are being unrealistic if you imagine we still have the sort of control or visibility of projects that we once had. It's still too early to assess how much the architects were able to influence the final construction specification. We shall see. But the public should also expect a far higher level of duty of care from those who put savings above safety.
Architects are disciplined every week for shoddy practice. I suggest you look up the ARB disciplinary process. Contractors, on the other hand, are accountable to no-one but Mammon. This country is overrun with cowboy firms. This was, in part, a failure of final specification when cheaper materials are often 'value engineered' into the design. It's been going on for centuries. It's Time the whole building industry took responsibility. Yes, where has the Clerk of Works disappeared to? Why are Architects usually dropped after Planning permission? Better education? It's about time British contractors were better regulated and trained. They might end up being as good as their Polish counterparts!
Are architects to watch what they say for fear of alienating the house builders? What a sad day that would be.