MONTGOMERY COUNTY GOVERNMENT Code No. 004408
ROCKVILLE, MARYLAND Grade 22
DEFINITION OF CLASS:
This is developmental level work requiring a professional architect, where the employee gains experience in a wide range of architectural endeavors. Internship Development Program (IDP) training is usually an element in this class. Contacts are with a variety of people, including co-workers at all levels, building tenants, A&E professionals, staff of other agencies and firms (such as WMATA, WSSC and PEPCO), and, at times, civic associations, community groups, public interest groups (including preservationists and disability rights advocates), etc. Employees in this class typically exchange routine project information with their contacts, but some contacts include some controversial issues or multi-faceted problems. They give formal presentations in public and private. Public service and assistance in this class are generally limited to provision of information and incidental.
Employees in this class help a higher grade architect with parts of a large, complex architectural project or manage a project of limited scope and complexity, such as a straightforward renovation. The employee identifies, prepares, reviews or recommends studies, engineering requirements and architectural designs that include architectural analyses, engineering calculations, building system specifications, and cost estimates; and reviews facility studies and designs (from initial schematics to final construction drawings, specifications, etc.) to ensure compliance with County design standards, project objectives, project time lines, project budgets and many other factors. The supervisor (Chief, Building Design Section) or a higher grade architect (when the employee is assisting in project management) makes assignments in terms of fairly well-defined functions or objectives, known or potential problem areas, time lines, budget considerations and similar factors for capital project management assignments typically covering moderately complex work. Typically, the supervisor (or the higher grade architect when the employee is in the role of project assistant) and the employee develop a mutually acceptable approach that, upon approval, the employee carries out independently within a framework of frequent reporting and review. The employee balances functions, aesthetics, budget and schedules on his/her own, except in unusual or nonstandard situations when assistance is expected and readily available. Work is reviewed for accuracy, sufficiency, timeliness, customer service and other factors. Complexity is characterized by project responsibilities, including the need to monitor and guide various professionals (employees and non-employees) working on it, and various challenges, such as the site (size, shape, elevation, etc.), environmental issues (leaking tanks, PCBs, asbestos, etc.), phasing and staging (tenants may need to occupy it while work is done, for example) and stakeholders (including their nature, interests, perspectives and "clout"). Guidelines include standard and generally-accepted design principles, engineering standards, building, fire and life safety codes, accessibility rules and other federal, state and local regulations (such as the County's manual for planning, design and construction of sustainable buildings) to ensure that the technical features of architectural designs and proposals comply with regulatory requirements. Other important guides cover regional planning, zoning, historic preservation, procurement and project management. The employee in this class uses judgment in selecting, adapting and applying or devising the appropriate guides because some of them are rather general and some projects require new approaches. The employee must make trade-offs in balancing building appearance, functionality, durability, maintainability, sustainability and other factors, including competing demands or desires of varied stakeholders. The scope of work revolves around conventional design projects of limited scope. The work affects the tenants of the space (as in the renovation of a large division's office space), the users of the facility (such as design and construction of a commercial kitchen), the taxpayers who foot the bill (which is why cost control) and others. The employee works mainly in offices, meeting rooms and other places that are adequately heated, lighted and ventilated. However, there is also field work, such as field surveys, site and construction project visits, where there is dust, dirt, grease and exposure to adverse weather. The employee spends some time at work sites where a hard hat and caution are required. Risks may result from construction activity as well as general site conditions, including but not limited to street traffic, moving equipment, uneven terrain or constructed spaces and possibility of falling materials. Safety shoes and hearing protection may also be required. Occasionally, the employee is on rough or uneven terrain, be it a proposed building site or a construction site. There is also some kneeling, stooping or bending and reaching or use of ladders to view restricted spaces or access building mechanical systems and the like.
EXAMPLES OF DUTIES: (Illustrative Only)
Project Planning, Management and Execution
Receives core information about project goals, constraints (what must be done) and other issues. Meets with facility users or intended users and others (such as finance and budget officials) to identify their wants and needs and such key restraints as funding, time lines, phasing and staging. Provides facility and space planning expertise to user agencies, other project management staff and real estate acquisition specialists in the development of the program of requirements, cost estimates, space layout and use, typically relying on standardized specifications or instructions of a higher grade professional. May serve on site selection committees and act as an advisor on site utilization. Helps user agencies to develop long range functional master plans for future space/facility needs. Surveys the site or building for feasibility, practicality, functionality and other considerations. Seeks to assure the County's best interests in developing or helping develop project requirements and monitoring or performing detailed work.
Meets with prospective A&E contractors, usually as a team member, to help establish technical criteria (including maintainability and sustainability), project schedules and many other requirements for subsequent inclusion in the A&E contract. Helps develops bid packages in conformance with established processes and contract language. May convene and lead A&E selection panels, but is often a junior member of the team. Helps develop or completes the details of alternative concepts, typically identified by others, and preliminary work drawings incorporating the latest technological advances for quality and economy of design, considering such factors as funding limitations, operational requirements, site conditions and special factors.
Reviews and analyzes submissions of preliminary and working drawings prepared by contracted A&E firms for compliance with County standards, policies, progress and other factors at regular stages. Helps provide guidance to the principal management consultant or individual architect(s)/engineer(s) on scope, concept and special features. Quality controls architectural elements of in-house and A&E designs. Monitors and assesses the effectiveness of contractors in meeting technical and non-technical contract requirements. Monitors project reviews, adjusting funds (usually lower dollar amounts), schedules and work for completing the project or project segment. Identifies and recommends correction of planning and functional errors or improvement of architectural features, coordinating any A&E changes and resolving discrepancies in opinions or submissions that affect the current or intended facility users or other interested parties, schedules, costs, etc.
Helps identify need for, reviews and recommends approval of cost of changes. May help negotiate design changes with the principal management consultant, sub-contractors and others, such as facility users. Relying on precedents, develops contract amendments and change orders, issues field orders or otherwise provides instructions for change.
Coordinates activities with other governmental agencies in obtaining
approvals of construction contract documents and other applications for
permits, waivers, and other requirements.
Maintains appropriate documentation to protect Montgomery County against claims and to secure or keep Maryland, federal or private-public funding.
May serve as the County's architectural representative in final inspections to assure conformance to contract requirements before commissioning.
May conduct or help prepare feasibility studies concerning conventional projects for new, or the re-use of existing, County or non-County facilities, incorporating planning, architectural and economic factors to aid in Capital Improvement Project (CIP) budget preparation and operating budget consideration of affected user agencies (some projects affect multiple agencies or buildings).
Makes recommendations to the department director or division chief on specific space assignments. May help make recommendations on the acquisition of land or buildings or the construction of new buildings (lease, buy or build) against the backdrop of a long term comprehensive facilities plan.
May lead lower grade architects (co-workers) in various projects.
Evaluates space requests, recommends space assignments and alternatives.
Informs the public and advises contractors on architectural policies and requirements.
Initiates or prepares correspondence to developers, designers, property owners and others.
Serves as the department representative to other agencies, community advisory boards, bi-County agencies, municipalities, etc. for limited facility planning projects. Reviews and provides comments to other County agencies concerning Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission master plans regarding facility implementation impact.
Keeps abreast of the latest developments in architecture and related disciplines by review of technical literature, attending conferences or professional society meetings and discussion with industry representatives. Evaluates new materials and design or construction processes and techniques, recommending the adoption of those that would provide more efficiency or economy or other payoffs and to keep up with changing requirements.
Conducts public and private presentations in various forums for stakeholders to ensure distribution of adequate and accurate information to all parties concerned and to receive and respond to their concerns and comments.
Experience: One year of experience as an Architect I or the equivalent.
Education: Graduation from an accredited college or university with a Bachelor of Architecture degree.
Equivalency: An equivalent combination of education and experience may be substituted.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:
Thorough knowledge of (1) architectural concepts, principles and practices, (2) building systems (such as mechanical and electrical systems) and (3) aesthetic and functional building considerations (such as scales of design, mixes of materials, color schemes, graphics, landscape architecture and acoustics) to develop or review requirements, guidelines and plans for County facilities; to consult with engineers and architects within and outside the County; and to balance aesthetic considerations and functional requirements within budgets and schedules.
Thorough knowledge of related fields (including civil engineering, structural engineering, the construction industry, interior design and urban planning) to ensure proper staff coordination and sequencing of work, anticipate and minimize collateral problems during planning and design for construction projects.
Thorough knowledge of building, fire and life safety codes, accessibility rules and other federal, state and local regulations to ensure that the technical features of architectural designs and proposals comply with regulatory requirements.
Familiarity with historic preservation as it concerns County structures (and sometimes private structures) to help identify pertinent preservation issues, help develop appropriate mitigation responses, help establish or maintain effective liaison with preservationists, and help ensure the overall conformance of designs with public policy.
Knowledge of the County's procurement and project management procedures to facilitate accomplishment of administrative aspects of projects.
Skill in project management to manage important and complex architectural projects for the County. This includes skill in monitoring, guiding and coordinating the work of others, including A&E professionals, negotiating and developing contract agreements/amendments for facility design and construction and the performance of other professional services.
Skill in problem solving to conceive designs, prepare/review architectural drawings of moderate complexity, develop options, analyze cost estimates, and perform related functions.
Skill in oral communication to exchange technical and non-technical information with various people having different interests and perspectives so that they will understand and a course of action may be agreed. This includes skill in formal presentations and the ability to encourage verbal communication by others. Examples of verbal communication include presenting design concepts in meetings and the daily exchange of progress information with contractors and co-workers.
Skill in written communication to exchange technical and non-technical information with various people having different wants, needs and perspectives so that they will understand and a course of action may be agreed. This includes skill in reviewing the written work of others. Examples of written communication include design specifications and progress reports.
Interpersonal skills to interact effectively with personal contacts in a business-like, customer service oriented manner.
Skill in using a computer, modern office software suites and specialized architectural and engineering software to communicate, plan, schedule, word process, manipulate data, design or review the design of structures, etc.
Artistic ability to develop or evaluate the aesthetic features of architectural designs and details.
Possession of valid professional registration as an Architect issued by the State of Maryland is not required in this class. However, an IDP is typical in this class and the employee must progress in the IDP and the established career ladder. The employee must acquire and maintain Maryland registration consistent with education and the experience requirements set by the Maryland Board of Architects or he/she will not be retained in the career ladder.
Individuals appointed or promoted to this class will be required to serve a probationary period of six months, during which time performance will be carefully evaluated. Continuation in this class will be contingent upon successful completion of the probationary period.
Individuals appointed or promoted to a bargaining unit position in this
class will be required to serve a probationary period of six months. Individuals
appointed to a non-bargaining unit position in this class will be required
to serve a probationary period of twelve months, or if promoted to a non-bargaining
unit position, will be required to serve a probationary period of six
months. Performance will be carefully evaluated during the probationary
period. Continuation in this class will be contingent upon successful
completion of the probationary period.
MEDICAL PROTOCOL: Core Exam II and Drug/Alcohol Screen
Class Established: January 2007