In order to produce high quality and appropriate structural designs our understanding of the project brief extends beyond pure structural engineering solutions. We have a holistic approach which involves issues such as the underlying architectural design intent; budget and funding constraints; health and safety; minimising the environmental impact of the works; servicing strategy; phasing of the works; and procurement methods.
Our in-depth and collaborative approach creates an environment where we explore a variety of structural options using clear and concise sketches, before accurate final drawings are executed. When the design progresses we employ VectorWorks, AutoCAD and Revit Structural Suite. The office uses Robot, QSE and Multiframe for linear, non-linear, dynamic and finite element structural analysis. We are careful to see that structural analysis doesn’t obscure our subjective understanding of the structural behaviour and all analyses are checked by hand.
We are at the forefront of innovation in structural engineering design; we research, attend training, lectures and seminars to keep up-to-date with form, materials and construction techniques. We were early adopters of “new” materials (such as engineered timber products and ethyl-tetra-fluoro-ethylene) and modern methods of construction (including Off-Site Manufacturing systems in steel and timber; slip-forming, flying and tunnel forms and bubbledeck systems for concrete) although our design solutions are always informed by what is appropriate for each project, not necessarily the latest product.
Management and Control Procedures
The directors are involved throughout the progress of each project, this provides both strategic and management expertise at every stage. Our weekly meetings with staff and monthly management meetings ensure that we are not only informed but we can also combine our knowledge to provide the best possible design solutions. Our strong in-house communication and programming enables our team to respond to critical queries within 24 hours.
We have successfully collaborated with a wide range of consultants, which provides design and programme advantages to all our projects. These consultants include: “traditional” building professionals and also educational specialists, disability and access consultants, acousticians, fire consultants, wind consultants (including wind tunnel testing authorities), geotechnical specialists, materials sampling and testing specialists, model makers and prototypers, artists, poets and social workers. Our established relationships with a wide network of specialists provide design and programme advantages to a wide range of projects.
Our desire to build a strong team in-house with a broad yet specialist knowledge and our ability to create long-term networks of consultants and contractors ensures our clients are provided with a successful engineering design solution.