Business Central December 2023

| 71 T T Rosa Watson Building relationships Olivia Hoogerbrug: “Residential is my passion, and the cornerstone of what I do.” Olivia Hoogerbrug Architecture ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN For Gisborne-based Architectural Designer Olivia Hoogerbrug, building relationships within the community has been key to operating a business in a smaller centre. Olivia is the sole member of Olivia Hoogerbrug Architecture and said since setting up three years ago it has been busy “pretty much from the get-go”. She started with projects for family and friends, and “bits and pieces here and there”. “Just building from there, going from small alterations … large residential and some commercial projects. “I’ve had so much support locally. Everyone’s had positive reactions to what I’ve been doing, and that’s helpful.” She said Tairāwhiti has been hit hard and was still hurting from the devastating cyclone earlier this year, it was usually a thriving region with strong primary industries as its backbone: horticulture, agriculture, fishing, and forestry. “I’m hoping we’ll be out of it (recovery) and come back as a better stronger region in the years to come.” Her long-term goal is to grow her business as a place that young professionals might want to move to Gisborne for. “Long term, my hope is to grow into a bigger collaborative team … (and) provide that expanded capacity for architectural services. “In the next 10 years I’m looking to build up to that.” She said it would be great to see a new wave of up-and-coming professional services in Gisborne. “If you are a good person and provide a good service, you do well here.” “I’m hoping that over time we get that push through of new energy.” Gisborne is a great place to raise a family, with beautiful beaches and a rural setting, there is a lot of opportunity to start and grow a business here, she said. “If you are a good person and provide a good service, you do well here, it’s a word-ofmouth town. There’s a lot of opportunity and gaps in the market that professional services could fill.” The key to success was developing strong relationships in the community, she said. One example was working with local consultancy Fire Safety Consultancy, headed by engineer Marlis Haertel, that provided services to designers and builders to ensure plans met fire safety regulations in the building code. “Marlis is just the pinnacle of professionalism and grace with how she operates.” She said businesses in the region worked well together and supported each other. “You know who is going to get the job done and who’s good to work with. If anything goes wrong, everyone brings their professional integrity to the table, and is ready to solve it, which is awesome.” Olivia graduated in 2014 and hit the ground running straight into the industry. She worked in Hawke’s Bay where she was trained up by an ex-builder, which she said gave her “really sound practical knowledge”. “I feel like I’m quite balanced with my experience and approach. I’m not leaning into one corner heavily with design or construction, I like to ensure things are beautiful, and practicably buildable.” She has a certain modern contemporary aesthetic to her work. “It’s soft and feminine and light and warm.” She works in commercial and education projects, and has carried out work for Kainga Ora, but said her heart is in residential. “Residential is my passion, and the cornerstone of what I do.” She was a “big listener” and takes on board her client’s wishes, molding it into a collaborative response. Consultants like Fire Safety Consultancy were then brought in to put an eye over the plans. “There’s a huge amount of collaboration in the design.” That’s where building trusting relationships was important, Olivia said. When building or constructing a new home or building, it’s important to get the ire safety design right tomeet ever-changing building code requirements. That’s where Gisborne-based Fire Safety Consultancy can help, o ering guidance during the design process to ensure the plans meet growing compliance requirements in constructing new buildings. Their range of services cover all aspects of ire engineering, addressing speci ic needs of each project, frompreliminary advice to preparing ire reports for building consent documentation, and conducting constructionmonitoring. Marlis Haertel, a chartered professional engineer (CPEng), is the driving force behind Fire Safety Consultancy, has been helping architects, developers, structural engineers and builders tomeet ire safety requirements under the Building Act. “We provide the engineering services from a ire point of view. “The client talks to the architects about what they want to build, and the architect comes to us and we (check it) complies with the ire regulations in the building code. “We are basically part of the design team.” The consultancy prepares ire reports tomeet compliance and safety requirements for all residential, commercial and industrial buildings, and to identify and rectify ire safety defects within buildings. They also carry out construction monitoring to ensure the ire safety features are constructed and installed in accordance with the consented ire safety design. Also on the team is Jennifer Richards, who has been in the industry since 2018 and has successfully worked on diverse projects, ranging from small-scale residential endeavors to larger commercial projects. Clients of Fire Safety Consultancy include local councils, government departments, Gisborne fire safety consultant helping to ensure compliance commercial landlords and property developers, with some notable projects being the Whakatōhea Mussels complex in Ōpōtiki, Gisborne Airport, Whakatāne Paper Mill, Hastings Municipal Building and Carters Masterton. Although based in Gisborne, they have undertaken projects all around the country; fromKerikeri to Invercargill, with a new project starting in Dunedin. Fire Safety Consultancy understands that with the current design and construction practices, it is most-often a desktop exercise, with site visits not always being necessary. Marlis, who gained a Master of Engineering Studies in Fire Engineering from the University of Canterbury, brings a wealth of expertise to the ield. With years of experience in the building consent and construction industries, she combines practical construction knowledge with theoretical expertise to provide innovative ire design solutions. Fire Safety Consultancy has worked closely with Olivia Hoogerbrug Architecture on a number of projects, including a it-out for a commercial multi- loor tenancy. They had previously worked with Olivia on a multi residential building in a previous role of hers. “We, as ire engineers, are part of the design team and provide the architect with the building code requirements for ire safety. “This means liaison with the architect throughout their design process to ensure their architectural designmeets the relevant compliance. “Using the architectural drawings, we inally issue the ire safety report, which is part of the building consent documentation that is submitted to council.” The team's meticulous approach to ire safety design ensures that every building is up to code, o ering clear and concise compliance solutions for the construction industry. Fire Safety Consultancy Innovative Engineering Solutions Fire Engineers You Can Count On Fire Safety Consultancy Ltd provides comprehensive engineering services, including fire reports, defect identification, accessibility design, construction monitoring, and emergency lighting. Our experienced team of consultants are dedicated to helping you achieve the best fire engineering solution for your project. (06) 862 5022 73 Salisbury Road, Gisborne 4010 CONTACT