Lessons Learned Thus Far

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Written by Zachary Spero

As my time at Quorum is slowly dwindling, I have taken the time to reflect on my experiences over the past month in a half. These past two months have been highlighted by site visits, lengthy conversations regarding architectural contracts, and continued development of my understanding of the industry norm of producing drawings by digital means.

I have developed a new understanding of the progression of projects through the six design phases (conceptual design, schematic design, design development, construction documents, construction bidding, construction administration). The six design phases involve a tremendous amount of attention to detail as the architect is given many tasks to complete or oversee for each phase.

I have had the opportunity to discuss the basic agreement between owner and architect with one of our firm’s principles in great length at my time at Quorum thus far. This is very important to me because I want to learn what responsibilities the architect has from start to finish of a project. Agreements between an owner and architect often begin with a letter proposal from the architect which sets the scope of the project as well as the fees. From the point at which a project is secured, Quorum has taken the time to explain to me what happens through each step of the design phase. This includes discussing the architects form of agreement which documents the owner/ architect agreement. I have analyzed what language is to ensure proper responsibility is taken by all parties engaged in design and construction with the guidance of principals helping me understand language used in agreements.

It truly takes a team effort for a project to be completed. Therefore, I have learned what consultant responsibilities include as they help to execute a buildings construction. It is the architect's role to coordinate with all parties involved to ensure design is constructed properly to help clients reach their vision of their project. It has been great to understand the holistic design process, and then actually be able to participate in it at Quorum.

I have experienced conceptual design, schematic design, and design development on several projects as Quorum has involved me in many areas of their service. I have surveyed a number of sites and drafted them according to their built conditions. I have incorporated owner requests into new design of the spaces I have helped survey. I have applied my own ideas to laying out different design schemes. I have helped develop design.

The one thing that I have not done since I have been at Quorum is stop listening. I have learned how to construct my design ideas by means of working with Quorum staff to understand how a building is put together. By exploring plan, section, and elevation in terms of their inherent relationship to each other, I have learned abundant information about building construction- something that I did not have real world experience in. Through the coaching of Quorum Staff, I have learned how a building actually comes to fruition by means of learning construction standards.

By listening to the professionals that surround me, I have a new understanding of the architect’s responsibility to their client by means of contractual obligations and design. This is achieved by proper coaching by the staff at Quorum that doesn't hesitate to answer my questions. I am looking forward to my last month of time at Quorum as I attempt to learn as much as I can from the design professionals that surround me.

Mario Valdez Named Recipient of Fort Worth Business Press 40 Under 40

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Project Manager and Intern Architect Mario Valdez has been named a recipient of the Fort Worth Business Press' 40 Under 40

"40 Under 40 is celebrated to recognize brilliance on the rise up. 40 honorees each year, all under the age of 40, destined for striking accomplishments in their chosen field,   from the corporate sector to maverick entrepreneurialism. They are leaders today and are sure to be part of the next generation that will make Tarrant County a great place to live and work." (Fort Worth Business Press)

With the majority of Mario’s experience being at Quorum Architects in Fort Worth, Mario has earned the confidence and trust of his clients through his work ethic and years of experience. He is always eager to help on new projects from which he can learn something new, always doing his best to help the success of the project. His contributions to the design team are reflected throughout various stages and his efforts have aided in the completion of numerous projects including retail tenant improvements for multiple national retailers, religious building additions, medical buildings and many animal shelters throughout Texas.  His most recent success has been the completion of his wife's veterinary facility, St. Francis Veterinary Clinic.


Creativity in Many Forms

Mario’s creativity is self-evident from the murals in his children’s bedrooms to the photography exhibited throughout his workplace. One of his favorite hobbies puts him behind the lenses of his DSLR, always trying to capture family moments or the latest developments at a local job site under construction.

Although Mario works endlessly to meet deadlines at Quorum Architects, he also finds time to help manage his wife's veterinary clinic. Mario and his wife opened St. Francis Veterinary Clinic in 2016 with the support of their friends and family; they are now celebrating their first anniversary and planning for growth. 

Making a Difference 

Mario’s involvement in many local architectural projects has helped promote public welfare and sustainability through creative yet functional designs. His work in animal care designs such as animal shelters and veterinary clinics has created opportunities to educate the public on responsible pet care and ownership. His involvement in numerous volunteer capacities with a focus on the Fort Worth Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has contributed to make Fort Worth an incredible place to live, work, and play.

Philanthropic Involvement:

  • AIA Fort Worth, regular volunteer/participant for various scholarship fundraiser events like:
    • Annual Clay Shoot (Company Sponsor team)
    • Annual Spring Gallery night (volunteer)
    • Annual Home Tour Committee (volunteer and Committee Member)
  • Fort Worth Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Ambassador for 6 years, current chair of Ambassador Group, a regular Volunteer in numerous scholarship fundraiser events like:
    • Fiesta Night at the Rodeo (Committee Member and volunteer)
    • Golf Tournament (Volunteer)
    • Gala (Volunteer)
    • Sporting Clay (participant)
  • SteerFW
  • Benbrook YMCA Board of Directors
  • Church and Religious Education Volunteer
  • Benbrook Trash Bash annual team participant
  • Fort Worth Zoo – Annual Zoo Run – water station sponsor (SFVC)
  • Bark N’Build annual event - participant
  • Guest Speaker at :
    • STEM summer program at Wesleyan University
    • Career Day speaker at local elementary schools FWISD
    • Judge Whitley’s Senior Synergy Expo (bilingual volunteer)
    • Women’s Center annual Victory Over Violence (5K)  - Quorum Sponsor Team

Other worth mentioning:

  • Habitat For Humanity house builds (Quorum team)
  • Cowtown Clean Up (David Duman team)
  • Meal on Wheels
  • Humane Society of North Texas Trick or Trot 5k run: booth sponsor (SFVC)

 

Quorum Architects Has Designs on the Future with New Interior Design Partner

Quorum Architects Has Designs on the Future with New Interior Design Partner

Quorum Architects, Inc. is pleased to announce our newest shareholder, Karin Taylor, as Director of Interior Design. Karin will lead Interior Design at Quorum on retail designs, office projects, and various national, regional and local projects.