When you learn about ancient cultures, the first thing you study is their architecture, because it is so representative of the age and cultural context that produced it. Architecture exists to create the physical environment in which people live; it directly affects and reflects the quality of life of its society. Beyond merely providing shelter, architecture becomes the context for our lives.
Good architecture is intentional. It has the ability to relate to individuals and affect how they experience the world around them. This quality cannot be deciphered into scientific terms or quantified, but is something purposely created from the architect’s multi-faceted knowledge base.
Architects have the unique social responsibility to design our built environment. They are highly educated, licenced professionals who are trained to not only understand the complex technical and regulatory context of building, but also to approach each project critically, framing design decisions within broader considerations of the public interest.
Architects and Licensed Technologists OAA—the membership of the Ontario Association of Architects—are the dedicated, professional creators of our public domain. Their work protects the public and building owners, and demonstrates integrity and a commitment to the future of our communities. It teaches the next generation and influences the perception of the profession as a whole. OAA members and practices are committed to advancing projects with professionalism and an expertise that only architects possess.
When it comes to building design projects in Ontario, there are numerous instances where the law requires you to work with an architecture practice. However, for any construction project, there are significant benefits to working with holders of an OAA Certificate of Practice. Architects and Licensed Technologists OAA are highly skilled professionals with extensive training and experience, and can help you through complex regulatory building requirements. They must maintain the currency of their knowledge by following the mandatory Continuing Education (ConEd) program and have access to Practice Advisory Services offering a wealth of exclusive information, resources, and insight. Further, practices are protected by professional liability insurance through the OAA’s wholly owned subsidiary, Pro-Demnity Insurance Co.
If you are looking for more information on architects and how to choose a practice with which to work, the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) has created a primer: "What is An Architect? at https://raic.org/raic/what-architect.