From experience, design becomes intricate when a secondary designer has to design for an extension – but yet lone standing structure – to a pre-existing facility as and when designed by a primary designer whom we can also refer to as an initial designer.
An example is a project that I had to do very early on this year in Solwezi. The brief asked to design dormitories for both males and females but with a central food court as a supporting facility, for a primary school that has since been turned into a boarding school.
The design technicalities entailed that this extension needed not look out of context or present itself as an afterthought. Because of this, certain aspects from the precedent design had to be incorporated in, so as to create a bridge between the new and the old i.e. the overly visible Gable roof and burnt bricks as construction material.
At the end of the day, the new structure appears not to have been designed by the secondary designer, and that is what designers undertaking similar projects must strive to avoid. It therefore becomes all about striking that balance – finding the gray area, that silver lining if you will.
The gray area in the aforementioned project was the use of stone finish for the facade and the splash of green paint for the roof. This was done so as to leave a print on the project as the secondary designer. It was about bringing something new to the table.