Colin brings to a project over three decades of experience in architecture and construction, going from Junior Draftsman to overseeing projects end-to-end at Francis Terry and Associates.
His understanding of projects and creating lasting, unforgettable architecture comes hand in hand with the ability to bring people together and cement them around a single vision. Engaging, organised and knowledgeable, he coordinates complicated projects and acts as the point of contact for every question and query – no matter how detailed and specific.
Colin identifies a successful project as one where the design team and the main contractor works well together. For the structural engineer, mechanical engineer, interior designer, and landscape designer to work well together – and in service of the client’s desires – someone needs to facilitate communication, collaboration and shared decision-making. While a Project Manager plays an important role, the technical side of a project requires the specialist expertise of the Architect.
In practice, it takes an eye for detail, a talent for communication, and an encyclopedic knowledge of a given project. Someone to sit in the middle of it all and consider the implications of every small change or decision on the wider project and, ultimately, the building.
“Coordination is a key, as lead consultant we have to coordinate closely with all the other consultants, we sit down with them and work together to produce a fully co-ordinated design.”
In practice, Colin’s week includes updating drawings, checking consultants and subcontractor drawings, responding to requests for information from site, preparing schedules, and attending meetings with the client, consultants and contractors - either on site or in the office. He combines his skills for coordination with a creative approach to problem solving in construction.
“It’s nice to solve problems and we try to make sure we get as much as we can designed and detailed before the project gets to site. It is important to visualise how to solve a problem, ideally long before it becomes an issue on site, but sometimes you get the problem on site which will then need to be resolved as soon as possible to avoid a delay in the project, this requires ‘thinking on your feet’ to come up with the right solution. Recently, we had been asked to modify a room plan, but the initial solution didn’t look balanced on plan. Back at the office, I had an eureka moment and found a simple solution that was right in front of us, resulting in a better outcome for the client and a better building.”
By investing himself deeply into projects, Colin becomes an authority on both the practicalities of construction and the requirements and preferences of a client. Using this knowledge, he is uniquely able to oversee the inner-workings of a building while remaining sympathetic to the design.
“I like seeing projects through from start to finish. If you start on a project and see it through, you get to know every drawing and detail. On our projects thre might be more than 300 A0 sized drawings plus additional schedules & specifications, and you must know them all. To be able to know where this information is, and what the end result should be, enables you to be of help when on site or in meetings.”
About Colin Day
Associate, Francis Terry & Associates
Colin joined Francis’ previous practice in 1987. Between then and 1998, he went from Junior Draftsman drawing by hand, to working on numerous classical buildings, combining this with studying for a degree in Building Surveying and an HNC in Building Studies.
In the following 14 years, Colin went on to work on housing, retail, leisure, industrial and nursing home projects for two other local architectural practices, while also making the transition from drawing board to CAD and adopting other new technology. He came back to work for Francis in 2012, being part of FT&A at its formation in 2016, he became an Associate in 2017.
- Pre-Construction: Client meetings, design team meetings, lead consultant, construction drawings, schedules, specification
- Construction: Continued technical management of projects, lead consultant, project admin, team leader