The process will vary in complexity and in the length of time it takes to complete the facility. The project may be divided into a number of subprojects, but each of these will roughly follow the stages outlined above. The knowledge and expertise required at each stage also varies. For example, for a small single-family house, one person, such as the architect, can provide almost everything required to complete or co-ordinate each task at each stage. At another scale, a complex facility, such as a large hospital building, would require many experts at various stages, a multidisciplinary team with careful, highly skilled, specialized management and co-ordination.
Buildings are initiated by individual clients or by a group representing a public or private institution or corporate entity. The architect is selected by the client for skills and capability to lead and manage the implementation and for ability as a designer and specialist in design quality control. Architectural firms are able to provide specialized services demanded by clients for particular building types, such as schools, hospitals, office buildings, commercial facilities, recreational facilities, houses of worship and homes.
A typical small architectural practice will have 1 or 2 registered architects, with up to 10 or more assistants who may or may not be fully qualified architects. The principal architects are usually generalists with the experience, knowledge and personal capability to handle all stages of small and medium-sized projects. A large architectural practice will be based on one or more principals, with several senior associates or junior partners, all registered architects. The practice may employ 50-200 architects, technologists or draftspeople. Frequently, large practices will include or organize teams with other professional disciplines, such as structural, mechanical, electrical or civil engineers. They are then able to provide the expertise required for large, complex projects.
The practice of architecture in Canada is controlled by the profession under the terms of provincial legislation. Each province has an association or institute of architects that monitors and regulates practice by controlling the licensing of individual architects through admission requirements and procedures, and by disciplining members who transgress the rules of practice and code of ethics. Only members of the provincial association or institute are allowed to call themselves architects or to practise architecture. The association may prosecute other persons who do so. Individual members of a provincial association may join the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC).
To become a registered architect in a provincial association, candidates must have completed education, examination and experience requirements. Educational requirements consist of a professional degree of Bachelor of Architecture, followed by a 3-year internship program of monitored work experience and registration examinations. A candidate may also meet the education requirements by completing the RAIC Syllabus program, which is predominantly a self-study program allowing the candidate to qualify while employed in an architect's office. The Canadian Architectural Certification Board screens and approves the education status of all candidates. Architecture schools in Canada have been established at the following universities: British Columbia, Calgary, Manitoba, Carleton, Laval, McGill, Montréal, Toronto, Waterloo and Dalhousie (formerly the Technical University of Nova Scotia).
Mobility for registered architects is provided for by arrangements for reciprocal recognition of credentials, which may include provisions for special examination (eg, where language or legal systems differ). That mobility has been enhanced with the evolution of the Free Trade Agreement with the US and Mexico, and the gradual move towards shared standards of professional education in architecture and their examination.
Author DOUGLAS SHADBOLT Rev: GRAHAM LIVESEY
Links to Other Sites
The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada
RAIC is the voice for architecture and its practice in Canada. It provides the national framework for the development and recognition of architectural excellence. Check out information about career opportunities in architecture and the "Professional Interest" section for a multimedia feature about health care architecture.
A website about the life and professional career of Canadian architect Moshe Safdie. From the Canadian Architecture Collection, McGill University.
John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape & Design
The website for the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape & Design at the University of Toronto. Features academic program information and an overview of the long history of the Faculty which was founded in 1890.
Written in Stone
This multimedia tour of the Canadian Museum of Civilization features extensive commentary about the design, development, and construction of this landmark building in Gatineau, Quebec. A great resource for students interested in architecture.
Take a virtual tour of the new Oujé-Bougoumou community facilities. Features stunning architectural designs by renowned Canadian architect Douglas J. Cardinal.
The Canadian Register of Historic Places
Canada is home to a vast array of fascinating historical sites. Many of them are illustrated and described in this searchable online database of Canadian historic places that are of local, provincial, territorial, and national significance.
The Arts and Crafts Movement
A nicely illustrated review of Victoria’s Arts and Crafts Movement from the University of Victoria website.
Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects
The website for the award-winning Canadian firm KPMB Architects. Check out their impressive online portfolio which features views of previous projects. Also includes profiles of the firm’s partners.
An extensive photographic survey of Canadian architecture. Search by building type, architect, location or date. From the Department of Fine Art, University of Toronto.
Canadian Architectural Archives
An online archive featuring profiles of prominent Canadian architects and images of selected works. From the University of Calgary.
Arthur Erickson Architectural Corporation (AEAC)
The website for the internationally renowned Canadian architect Arthur Erickson. Features a biography of Arthur Erickson and a multimedia showcase of major architectural projects.
Consultations & Roundtables on Women in Architecture in Canada
This 2003 RAIC report discusses key issues facing women in the profession of architecture in Canada. From the Royal Architectural Institute Of Canada.
Manitoba Association of Architects
The website for the Manitoba Association of Architects.
Glossary: Architectural Terms
A glossary of architectural terms related to heritage structures in Newfoundland and Labrador.
This website offers a few definitions and drawings to help you better understand some of the technical vocabulary used in architecture. From “Once upon a Roof,” a Virtual Museum of Canada website.
Hughes Condon Marler : Architects
The website for Hughes Condon Marler : Architects, a Vancouver firm that specializes in integrated, innovative, and sustainable architectural solutions.
The Roadshow: Architectural Landscapes of Canada
An article about "The Roadshow," a series of national events that explore contemporary ideas about the nature of “Canadian architecture” and related concepts. Click on the link at the bottom of the page to view videos of the presentations. From "Canadian Architect."