Seeing the unseen

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May 25, 2022 JJCA Improving the Human Experience

Sculptors see possibilities in blocks of granite and clay. Photographers frame landscapes through their outstretched hands. Seeing the unseen is something we do every day, too.

It always starts with being intentional about improving the human experience through thoughtful design. When we focus on what could be and listen intently to what clients want, then the outcomes sometimes surprise even us. Here’s a story from Jason Putnal about being open to the unseen.

One of our engineering partners, Envision Advantage, LLC, approached Jason and Steven Reutter to design the renovation of an old building they had recently purchased. We knew the building because it’s just down the road from us; we took it as a personal challenge to create something special for one of our design partners in our own neighborhood.

We walked through the space and started imagining what it would be like to work there and create great engineering solutions for clients. We started to see the unseen.

One idea was to create an exposed brick wall inside the building to separate the public area from the workspace. There was no exposed brick inside the building or at the main entrance, so we had to add it. Like the sculptor or artist, we peered at the space, framed it with our hands, and even closed an eye to see what could be possible.

And so, the wall came to life. It took a little structural support and added some cost but the partners at Envision loved the idea and made it happen.

And now, when we go to Envision’s office, we always spend a minute or two to look at the wall and appreciate how it came to be. Our teaming partners say how glad they are that we could “envision” something special for them. It looks like it belongs there and works perfectly as a simple architectural feature to distinguish between where visitors are free to come and go and where the engineers do their thing.  

Imagining and seeing the unseen are what we do every day, all part of improving the human experience through thoughtful design.

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