As seen in the New York Times.
Berkshire Magazine / September 2015 Read entire article.
Westchester House / New York Times.
JOHN HERRERA, AIA
I began practicing architecture almost a quarter century ago. Here are my beliefs.
I believe in the primacy of the architect’s collaboration with both the client and the contractor.
My responsibility to my clients begins with the creation of a simple concept that captures their dreams, works within their budget, and is adaptable to their future needs. My responsibility to the contractor begins with the mutual commitment to a respectful, honest and full working relationship; it carries through to the coordination of everything from pouring the foundation to ensuring that every cabinet pull is properly aligned.
I believe that an architect’s sensitivity to place is paramount.
What is the terrain of the site? What are the weather patterns? How does the sun move across the sky at different times of year? What are the plants and animals that thrive in the area? What is the vernacular of the surrounding structures? However original and eye-catching a project may be, it will feel empty and superficial if it does not share an organic relationship with its site.
I believe in sustainable design that is as energy efficient and environmentally responsible on a global scale as it is enduring and healthful for the individual occupant.
We live in a world of diminishing resources, shortsighted construction, and toxic materials. To build anything that does not take these realities into account is irresponsible, and I refuse to build structures that are wasteful, flimsy or unhealthy for their occupants.
I believe that my expertise in emerging building science and technology must be thorough and up to date.
Building science, techniques, and materials are constantly changing. In certain cases, the old ways are still the best ways. But often, a more current approach can make a huge difference in the timeliness of a project’s completion, its cost, and its efficiency.
I believe that the success of a project—no matter how large or complex—lies in the architect’s reverence for its smallest details.
While walls, floors, roofs, windows and doors are the basic vocabulary of architecture, it is the transition between these elements that shapes the spaces they define. Motel rooms, big box stores, and gas station restrooms are all inherently depressing places, but their desolation is—in part—a result of what is lacking: the thoughtful articulation and expression of materials and systems. In addition to sensitive siting, elegant exterior design, a thoughtful plan, and appropriate finishes, a building’s emotional impact derives from its details.