Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Who Are These Guys (WATG)?

Who Are These Guys (WATG)?
Your answers are as good as ours.
Caveat emptor!!!
(Buyers/ Procurers of Architectural Services i.e. Clients beware)!!!

1) WATG who insist that they can prepare, sign and seal architectural documents when in fact 1) they do not have a single academic unit of any architecture subject/ course to their name; and 2) they have not taken nor have they passed a State licensure examination that asks questions about architectural plan and design preparation/ practices.

2) WATG who apparently hire cheap student labor (B.S. Architecture students), have these students illegally perform architectural services such as draft/ prepare architectural documents, and then make such documents look official (they say “professional”?) ostensibly by signing, dry sealing and passing off as their own the sub-professional work of said students i.e. apparently without fully understanding what they are signing/ sealing?

3) WATG who apparently hire cheap the perennial repeat takers and failed takers of the licensure examination for architects (LEA), have these repeaters illegally perform architectural services such as draft/ prepare architectural documents, and then make such documents look official (they say “professional”?) ostensibly by signing, dry sealing and passing off as their own the sub-professional work of said LEA flunkers i.e. apparently without fully understanding what they are signing/ sealing?

4) WATG who have direct access to the architectural documents of many architects, and are apparently/ possibly tempted to take advantage of such untrammeled access to such a vast repository of architectural documents i.e. plans, designs, details, drawings, schedules, specifications, estimates, contract documents?

5) WATG who apparently “practice architecture” by supposedly merely “copying” from other architectural documents without giving much thought to intellectual property rights (IPR) attached to such documents and the ethical implications of such acts?

6) WATG who reportedly sign and seal the architectural documents prepared overseas by foreign nationals who cannot practice architecture lawfully in the Philippines?

7) WATG who have the temerity to sign and seal the architectural documents only to later say that they cannot assume the professional responsibility and civil liability of architects (since they are not architects)?

8) WATG who say that architecture is a branch of another profession and that architecture is only a recently recognized profession (when in fact the profession of architecture is at least 4,000 years old and that the term architect comes from an ancient Greek word i.e. arkitekton meaning “master builder”)?

9) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when they could apparently not even draw a simple architectural floor plan/ section/ elevation combine, much less a simple two (2)-point architectural perspective, without aid from a person with knowledge of/ skillsets relating to architecture?

10) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when they could apparently not even a) understand the basic/ simple concepts of (and mandated compliances relating to) yards and setbacks for buildings; or b) the effects of impervious surfaces (i.e. surfaces/ finishes that block surface water percolation and that accelerate flash-floods) that surround a building?

11) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when they could apparently not even understand the basic/ simple concepts of (and mandated compliances relating to) legal easements under the Water Code of the Philippines?

12) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services (which includes physical planning and urban design) when they could apparently not even understand that the road right-of-way (RROW) is part of the public domain i.e. not for private use and enjoyment?

13) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when what they apparently say, promote and tolerate is that a single-detached building (usually built at low density residential/ R-1 areas) has to have firewalls???

14) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when what they apparently say, promote or tolerate is that operable windows are permitted on a firewall?

15) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when what they apparently say, promote or tolerate is that openings in a carpark building wall and on a fire exit stairways can be covered by vinyl billboards/ commercial displays?

16) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when they apparently cannot even tell their clients about the effects of dark-colored/ shaded walls/ cladding and roofing on the building users i.e. that these maximize solar heat gain arising from undue/ excessive heat and light absorption?

17) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when their apparent concept of tropical design pertains to the extensive use of masonry surfaces that extensively absorb direct/ reflected heat from outside buildings/ structures and then release the same heat inside buildings/ structures, thus creating a “human oven” effect?

18) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when they could apparently not even correctly comprehend/ interpret the architectural sections and rules of the National Building Code of the Philippines (NBCP) i.e. mainly Rules VII, VIII and XII?

19) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services when they could apparently not even correctly tell their clients where the sun rises and sets and where the major winds come from i.e. all sources of heat, light and ventilation which need to be controlled inside and outside the building/ structure?

20) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing architectural services pro bono when what they could apparently manage to do is only to make life miserable for their trusting clients, who then have to suffer for the “pretending” architect’s mistakes?

21) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing genuine architectural services when they apparently think that there is no conflict of interest in contracting or supplying the project that he/she “planned/ designed” i.e. a situation that puts their clients in a “no-win” situation?

22) WATG who say that they are fully capable of performing genuine architectural services when their concept of design-build services is not to design-manage/ administer but solely to design-construct/ contract?

23) WATG who are primarily responsible for the extensive concreting of the built environment that has resulted in:
1) maximized heat and light reflectance near the ground (where humans move about and dwell);
2) in increased near-ground ambient temperatures;
3) in flash-flooding brought about by massive amounts of impervious surfaces i.e. paved areas in and around buildings that do not allow percolation i.e. water seeping into the ground to retard surface water flow that cause floods; and
4) in flash floods arising from potentially faulty design of road rights-of-way (RROW) that actually act as high speed canals that channel rain water and surface water to the lowest elevations/ locations at an accelerated pace?

24) WATG who are the entities primarily responsible for the design and erection of the oversized, non-mobile billboards that unduly cause the visual clutter in the urban environment and in our countryside and which cause deadly “accidents” during times of extreme events?

25) WATG in Government who are supposedly knowledgeable on technical matters but who apparently blindly “serve” their political masters, thereby causing the widespread violation of the National Building Code, the Fire Code, the Accessibility Law and the Water Code and further causing many of the problems we now experience everytime there are extreme events i.e. storms, excessive rain, etc.?

26) WATG in Government who are supposedly knowledgeable on technical matters but who apparently tolerate, encourage, aid, abet and “permit” potentially illegal/ unlawful construction, buildings, structures and informal settlements in apparent defiance of law (actually of the many valid and subsisting laws)?

27) WATG in Government who apparently “disappear” in times of flashfloods/ heavy flooding, mudslides and landslides i.e. possibly because they may be unable to explain the “real” causes of the flood or flood-induced situation?

28) WATG in Government who are supposedly knowledgeable on technical matters and who are supposedly empowered by law but who apparently are the primary cause of the utterly dismal appearance, performance and state of the built environment.

To be absolutely sure that You (as a potential Client) will truly get premium architectural services, please deal only with registered and licensed Architects (RLAs), who will assume the requisite professional responsibility and civil liability for the architectural documents that they will prepare, sign and seal. 

RLAs charge fees for their professional services (earned by completing a B.S. Architecture program and by passing a State licensure examination that is 100% about the planning and design of buildings and their settings). When someone offers You (as a potential client) architectural services for “free”, then it may be an indication that the offeror does not understand architecture at all or that the offeror may still charge such services “secretly”.

Lastly, R.A. No. 9266 (The Architecture Act of 2004) is the only Philippine law that states who can lawfully prepare, sign and seal architectural documents. There is no TRO, no injunction, no court order and no constitutional question/ prohibition against any of its provisions. R.A. No. 9266 has been in full effect since 10 April 2004. Its IRR has also been in full effect since December 2004.  

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