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The future of architecture

image R. Michael Lee is the founder of 3D Green Planet Architects

HOUSTON - Wouldn’t it be great to have a job where you felt like you were playing a game all day? That’s exactly how R. Michael Lee feels about what he does.







    Lee’s company, 3D Green Planet Architects, has been running for two years now, but he has been working in architecture for 35 years. “The company is a spin off from another company, which basically just did drawings, and it was in business for 30 years.” He says his first interesting project was designing a city in Saudi Arabia, which took about 18 months to do all the design work - he was still drawing at that point.
    “Doing drawings by hand is very
tedious and not so much fun. What I’m doing now is fun. It opens up windows for things I would have never conceived before.”
    Although all of Lee’s materials and resources are on his computer, he works with structural and mechanical engineers to get projects done right and on time.
    The time it takes for Lee to complete a design is phenomenal. He gave an example of how quickly he can complete a project design and still have it look professional. “The Women’s Crisis Center in Galveston had an architect that was doing a design for their new facilities and they were going to have a fundraiser at the Tremont Hotel. Some drama happened in the office – one of the girls was terminated and her boyfriend was the architect so he backed out. The contractor, whose wife was the director, contacted me and asked me to finish out the design. They needed it in 48 hours and I had a design in 24, which included a virtual walkthrough.”
    What Lee does doesn’t seem like work to him. “Whenever I start working on a project, I pull an all-nighter because it’s like a video game. In fact, Revit is the program of choice used to create Hollywood sets and gaming companies use the same type of software to generate what is seen in the games.”   
    “I’m basically assembling components rather than drafting lines. It’s like a virtual world.” - te

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Author Info
Tanya Erickson houstoneditor@constructionnews.net