Core VAI Services 

  • Site Master Planning
  • Building Programming
  • Feasibility Analysis
  • New Building Design
  • Facility Renovation Design
  • Interior Space Planning
  • Historic Preservation Design
  • Building inventory and As-Built Documentation
  • Condition Assessment and Compliance Review
  • Accessibility and ADA Compliance
  • Computer-Aided Drafting & Design (CAD)
  • 3D Computer Renderings and Animations
  • Digital Building Information Modeling (BIM)
  • Peer/Quality Assurance Review
  • Value Engineering
  • Construction Phase Administration
  • Building Program Management Support
  • Staff Augmentation Support
  • Architectural Commissioning
  • Sustainability Design/LEED Consultation
The colleague team of architects discussing and pointing at architecture model with shop drawing paper and laptop on table

Design

VAI’s key principals are active participants in project design, leadership, and client communications.  While design excellence is always our goal, first and foremost we concentrate on addressing key functional challenges, while incorporating architectural creativity to each evolving design solution.  We are advocates of responsible creativity, in producing innovative design solutions that are client and context-sensitive, and equally respectful of such factors as budget, long-term maintenance, operational efficiency, preservation of resources, code compliance, and constructability. Our firm realizes that its role is to listen, then to direct our efforts toward responding to each client’s unique vision, rather than imposing pre-conceived solutions.  We continually strive to maintain a team atmosphere and believe that positive collaboration yields the most responsive results.  Our firm adheres to a belief that great designs emerge from a dynamic and collaborative process that balances wants and desires with needs and resources.  We, therefore, seek to create design solutions that provide holistic value in terms of visual aesthetics, function, cost, sustainability, maintainability, and constructability.  VAI and its leadership stay informed on relevant health and safety issues concerning public buildings, and we are cognizant of how recent world health incidents have redefined various aspects of facility design and operations in a post-pandemic environment.

Technology

VAI has made substantial investments in the latest digital technologies. Our firm has utilized Computer Aided Design (CAD) since 1987, and in 2008 implemented Building Information Modeling (BIM).  Today, over 90% of our production staff is trained in BIM, which is utilized on the vast majority of our projects.  We operate approximately thirty digital workstations, most of which are dedicated for CAD/BIM design and production. Our in-house CAD Standards were based on the United States National CAD Standards (NCS). Our comprehensive project BIM Execution Plan (BIM XP) was developed according to consensus-based National BIM Standards (NBIMS), and delineates the standards, collaboration techniques, and communication protocols for project teams. We are accustomed to hosting the production of technical construction documentation on cloud-based centralized digital workspaces geared for collaborative BIM utilization. We also utilize additional computer technologies for project as-built facility assessments, project management, technical specifications, project scheduling, project monitoring and reporting, client invoicing, project cost estimating, and more.

In Architectural Bureau: Team of Architects and Engineers Working on a Building Complex Prototype Project, Using City Model and Computers Running 3D CAD Software. Residential or Business District
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Quality

At VAI, we define architectural quality as the ability to develop responsive designs that are uncompromising in both aesthetics and function.   We go to great measures to maintain this balance throughout design and construction.  However, we recognize that proper execution of design is largely dependent on our ability to produce and deliver high-quality technical construction documentation. Our firm has built an impressive track record of delivering exceptional CAD/BIM technical construction documentation. Our proficient and technically-oriented design staff adheres to a comprehensive internal Quality Assurance and Quality Control (QA/QC) Plan that is embraced by all of our licensed Architects, and that has proven successful on literally thousands of project assignments.  As a testament to its success, our firm not been involved in a single legal claim involving professional errors and omissions insurance coverage to date. Rather than an isolated procedure, QA/QC is imbedded in our operational practices through the ongoing involvement of a full-time in-house QA/QC Manager.  Our firm’s QA/QC review process addresses quality, completeness, compliance, constructability, and both inter-disciplinary and intra-disciplinary coordination of drawings and specifications.  Internally, we’ve adopted a holistic approach to quality management that encompasses both QA/QC and total Total Quality Improvement.   Whereas QA/QC establishes quality criteria, processes, and milestones on a project basis, Total Quality Improvement is aimed at continuous improvement of quality office-wide.