Gaining consistency in stressful times

Gaining consistency in stressful times

Posted by Julio Salazar and Gabriela Cristina
Nov 18, 2021

EMAAR is one of the top Real Estate developers in the world. Located in the United Arab Emirates, the company has a collective presence in 36 markets across the Middle East, North Africa, Pan-Asia, Europe, and North America.

Our track record and experience working on EMAAR projects previously added to our background in BIM technology made us a qualified partner to collaborate in the Design Guidelines review process. This process ensured that EMAAR's Design Guidelines were enforced and that the buildings delivered met the development/program requirements.

The Design Review was led by two of our senior staff, Julio Salazar, a Project Manager with an Engineering background, and Gabriela Cristina, a Project Architect with vast experience in Architectural Documentation Production and Coordination.

EMAAR's project in Creek Harbour of Dubai

It is essential to highlight that we received the Design Guidelines and red lines before receiving the documentation of the first two buildings. So, our team focused their efforts on crafting a solution to report findings most clearly and efficiently. With the challenge of reviewing around 6,000 drawings in 8 business days, the best solution was to create a Tracker from scratch before the documentation arrived.

This way, in the first call after the Kick-Off Meeting, we already had a draft of the Tracker. So we contrasted it with the client's expectations, and once its design team reviewed the draft, we established four sections since the reviews had to be generated in said short schedule.

Having the guidelines as a reviewer of the drawings made the work much more manageable. In the words of Gabi, "If I were a consultant, once they tell me what category the building they assign me belongs to, the design of the specialty would be very fluid."

Sample of a QA/QC Sheet

EMAAR's Design Guidelines standardize stakeholders involved in EMAAR projects to keep quality and functionality. And not less important, they follow EMAAR's design aim, to be simple, elegant, and easy to build.

The Design Guidelines alone are very eloquent. As Julio said, "one of the surprising things in the first stage with the client was receiving the Concept Design set, which was sent to us at first to understand how the revisions would come. It consisted of more than 6,000 graphic pieces, so as an Architect or Consultant, there is little that I would need to advance to the next stages of design".

With all the documentation and Guidelines available, our teams were ready to start off with the first two buildings assigned. But, also, the team at EMAAR required from our Tracker a technical opinion. That is the reason why we divided the Tracker into four sections:

  • Design Guidelines Compliance Review-Corbis Tech Review
  • Design Guidelines Compliance Review-Design Checklist
  • Design Guidelines Compliance Review-Development Class
  • Design Guidelines Compliance Review-Red marks

EMAAR's Guidelines and the Architectural Drawings with a QA/QC round served as input of the Tracker by Corbis

With the aid and collaboration of EMAAR and its team, we could successfully track issues in the Architectural set documentation. To add a plus to our work, we reviewed the set as our own red lines, finding odd elements/or layouts that did not work. We found some architectural problems that should not exist at that phase of the project, and that was what the team at EMAAR appreciated the most.

One of the most challenging aspects was getting the client's certainty that what we established in the Tracker had relevance for the client's design team. And not to miss something significant on the set that would not escalate to another design stage, in this case, the Design Development Stage.

Ultimately, when asked if they would recommend developers to implement a Design Guideline, our team was definitive: "absolutely, it helps to standardize the processes and assure the quality, avoiding future problems."

Render's of the EMAAR projects in Creek Harbour, Dubai.

The reason for that answer also lies in the fact that the Design Guidelines not only cover aspects of what each building must have according to the type. It also contains a guide of lessons learned throughout the years of development of EMAAR buildings.

CATEGORIES: CorbisStudio