Skies The Limit For Architects In The UAE

In an interview with the Canadian national paper The Globe and Mail, published September 30, 2008, Managing Director and Design Principal P. Martin Dufresne and business partner Rob Abi discuss how starting an architecture office can be exhilarating and yet demanding for young architects.

“In Canada, 90 per cent of the building projects never see the light of day, either because of legal restrictions or lack of financing.” Say Mr. Dufresne. “Here we can really let loose our creativity and we get to see the results in a very short time. In Dubai, construction is going 24/7 and a project that would take two to three years in Canada gets done in half the time.”

This was an incredible period for U+A’s directors. Construction boom was at its peak and architects worked extra shifts to catch up. However can the fast construction and unlimited flexibility of design staged in such a harsh and what might be volatile market receive justification and recognition from the international design community?

“We design so fast, we struggle not to cut corners,” says Dufresne in a separate interview. “We are concerned that in the long run we might face serious design issues, such as MEP and Structure due to ambitious and inexperienced developers.” This is another reality which many Architects and developers face as construction continues to flourish an accelerated pace.