David McKee Architects – Award Winning Design with ARCHICAD
Fayetteville, AR based firm, David McKee Architects has a long and unique history using ARCHICAD to design high-end custom residential homes. In addition to those types of projects, David and his team recently completed a preliminary design for a project at the Botanical Gardens of the Ozarks in the Fay Jones architectural style.
“The Botanical garden project is still in the very preliminary design phase, we are excited about seeing the project through and possibly earning a LEED certification.”
Though only recently upgrading the ARCHICAD 19, the firm has been producing outstanding work, winning an AIA award for design in an earlier version of ARCHICAD. Since upgrading, the team has noticed an improvement in visualization and detailing in the model.
“The biggest difference between then and now has to do with how we were using it in our workflow. We still hand draw in the office, but overall, the way we tackle a project changed. In the previous version, we were using ARCHICAD to draft, and were modeling with fewer details than we do now. In the current version of ARCHICAD we fully visualize the project when we meet with our clients.”
Now that they are modeling the houses completely in ARCHICAD, David McKee Architects enhance their visualization process with BIMx for presentations.
“With BIMx our clients come to our office, connect their iPad and walk through the design. It has been a huge help in communicating design intent. The walkthrough is a great tool to go beyond 2D drawings to get design ideas across to the client. In our experience it is not unusual for us to go thru 3 or 4 design iterations, but those rounds of changes are no big deal, because with the ARCHICAD model, we jump right into construction documents.”
Designed in the previous version of ARCHICAD, the award-winning project (Arkansas award for design) involved repurposing a mid-1950s building. The so-called 315 building had been a tire store, a restaurant and is now an office building with a residential component. McKee and his team completely gutted the building, designing custom stairways and relied heavily on ARCHICAD to preview the plan with the contractor.
“One of the biggest challenges with the 315 building was keeping the footprint of the building. We had to remove the roof to gain additional headroom for the residential component.”