Transforming Conceptual Designs into Reality: Collaboration is Key to Role of an Executive Architect

Continually evolving legislative requirements, changes in design trends, and a growing multitude of additional project influences such as sustainability, heritage and specific performance constraints, means that the coordination of the technical design process when delivering high quality, imaginative building installations is arguably more complex than it has ever been.


That’s where our role as Executive Architect comes in!


Essentially Woods Hardwick are architects who aren’t afraid to get our hands dirty and have the technical ability to oversee the practical delivery of the project design coordination and build phase. We can assist the Client & the Interior Design team, or the Contractors in taking projects from initial concept by managing the complexities during planning stage, coordinate the various stakeholder requirements and consultant outputs in the technical design phase, assist the Cost Consultant team throughout the procurement process and work collaboratively with the contractor when the project hits site, acting as a coordinating conduit between all the various project contributors.


Working closely with all the key project designers, we can help to create a fully deliverable design from the very beginning of a project. We passionately believe it is the responsibility of the Executive Architect to understand what elements of the design are most important for the Client and equally our design partners so that critical details that relate to particular functional, aesthetic or spatial requirements are protected and integrated throughout. This demands a collaborative and cooperative approach from us with the design team, contractors, project team and client from conception through to completion.


Once the concept vision or even the initial brief has been developed, we will work closely with the key designers to breakdown and understand all of the project information and aspirations to enable us to effectively take responsibility for the more pragmatic project information requirements and any associated scheduling and specifications, constantly reviewing project specific issues, creatively solving any challenges as the scheme develops by embarking on the design and delivery journey together as a team.


Typically, an Executive Architect’s scope includes:

  • Due Diligence viability assessments of the existing building to ensure that the initial Client aspirations are feasible from a compliance perspective.
  • Production of LA compliant information to support Planning Applications and Listed Building Approvals
  • Full suite of technical drawings and specifications for the base build elements of the project (our most successful projects are those where we work closely with the designer from the outset – and through to completion)
  • Obtaining permissions (landlord, freeholder, other stakeholders, etc) through detailed sign off procedures.
  • Production and management of Building Control Submissions
  • Coordination of 3rd party consultant designs, such as structural, MEP, Acoustic, Fire, and inclusion of any salient information within the Woods Hardwick detailed design package.
  • Quality Control, both of the design and the quality of workmanship and execution on site during the build process
  • On site trouble shooting, rapid response to contractors queries and regular site interaction through to completion


At Woods Hardwick, we constructively challenge all elements of the design to assist in making the design more efficient or to provide more appropriate solutions, without materially changing the overall concept or Client vision.


Covering many different building typologies, from listed buildings such as Harrods, Knightsbridge, The Maine in Hanover Square to the modern installation of BXR Gym’s at 22 Bishopsgate, one of our key roles is to assist in the cultivation of an effective and collaborative relationship between Clients, designers and contractors which coordinates the expertise and specific scheme requirements of the whole project team, which, when undertaken effectively will ensure the success of each project that we design and delivery journey together.



Ready to explore how Woods Hardwick Commercial Architecture team can elevate your next project? Contact Diane Cox to find out more.