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Experience Counts in Design Process

January 16, 1994

Designer/builders do not like the inference that builders and contractors are not professional, as suggested by architect Andres M. Cardenes of Culver City (Dec. 12) where he states: "The builder is a business person, the contractor is a service person and the architect is the professional."

While we contractors are not "the pharmacist" that he suggests and the architect is not "the physician," we all learn in life by our education and training and by our years of experience that one earns plaudits not by dictum nor by license, but rather by performance.

As my design/build life evolved through the years, I came to respect talents as they applied to the specific task. I found that all architects are not specifically capable of designing all types of projects, nor am I.

PAUL J. MEICHTRY

designer/builder

Northridge

*

Once again we builders, struggling to preserve our sense of worth and ability, have been attacked in the media. Not only are we witness to endless editorials about how disreputable we are, but now we are attacked by architects, no less, in the Letters to the Editor.

Owners and architects must awaken to the fact that the building process must include the designated contractor from the inception of the project. Not only will that insure that what might look good on a plan can be actually built and function, but that the home can even afford to be built. Project cost analysis is not a requisite to join the American Institute of Architects.

In answer to the architect in the Dec. 12 letters, I have a more appropriate analogy:

If your car breaks down, who would you rather have under the hood; a qualified mechanic or some dreamer in Detroit who decided that he just had to have that third tail fin?

PETER FORD

Los Angeles

*

I read the two letters Dec. 12 from the architects who were concerned that calling a contractor first for rebuilding or new construction was not the correct procedure.

However, I believe Gina G. Moffitt, AIA, who feels that the contractors have no knowledge about city and state requirements such as grading, drainage, Coastal Commission, etc., to be shortsighted and incorrect. Any contractor who has experience knows these codes and laws very clearly. If they build one house with all the above requirements, they've gone through the process.

ARCHIE KAPP

Los Angeles

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