“Some of the most satisfying projects I’ve worked on aren’t necessarily the biggest.”
MARCEL VETH ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR marcelv@ignitearchitects.com

I’ve always had a real technical interest in buildings – I like to know how they go together.

I look after Ignite’s special projects – they’re often the types of jobs that are more technically difficult. One of the most complex projects I’ve worked on was the weather-tightness and re-cladding project in Botany Town Centre. It was the biggest project of its kind in New Zealand and the outcome had a huge impact on the future of the village.  

Some of the most satisfying projects I’ve worked on aren’t necessarily the biggest. Quite a neat little one I was involved with was the weather-tightness remediation of a set of apartments in Auckland. The refurbishment opened the whole space up and created a nice environment for the people who lived there. The quality of life for the tenants improved immensely and it was really satisfying to be part of that change. 

When it comes to design, I think that in the long term, it’s not always glamour that shines. Durable design has a lot of weight. Durability of relationships is key as well – having a client come back and do another project with us is the biggest thanks we can get.

The evolution of technology in this industry is quite exciting.  We’ve already seen the quality of documentation improve immensely. Now we have 3D BIM models, which mean we have so much more information at our disposal. This information influences the way each building is managed - both through the construction phase and throughout its lifecycle.

The best part of my job is working with people, especially with our junior team members. Mentoring is an important part of my philosophy, and I’m always available to answer questions. I see that as a really important part of what I do, and it’s really satisfying to see people within the organisation grow into leaders. 

When I’m not in the office, I love being out on the water. I love New Zealand, and the Waitemata Harbour is one of the best places in the world.