Peter was building homes before he was designing them. He’s worked on residential projects on Waiheke Island and spent several years at McKenzie Higham Architects in Wellington working on everything from homes, schools, social housing, healthcare facilities, retail, and commercial buildings. He’s even built his own home.
Nowadays, Peter has opted out of the high-octane pace of big city architecture and set up as a sole operator here in Omokoroa. We asked Peter to tell us a bit more about his business, and how he can help the business community.
#1. Tell us about you and your background.
I grew up in the South Island and did a building apprenticeship straight out of school. I worked as a builder for several years before heading overseas on my OE. When I came back, I did an architecture degree at Victoria University in Wellington. I lived and worked as an architect in Wellington for many years, before deciding to move to the Bay of Plenty about 18 months ago. We bought here in Omokoroa about a year ago.
#2. Tell us about your business.
I focus on residential builds and renovations as well as commercial and retail architecture. I personally deliver on every project I take on, whether it’s a new build, renovation, commercial fit-out, or outdoor living space; I thoroughly enjoy
bringing every project to life.
#3. What makes your business unique?
One of the things that makes me unique as an architect is my background in carpentry and project management. I was building homes before I started designing them, and as a young builder, I loved following the drawings and seeing the architect’s vision come to life.
#4. How is your business different now from when you first started?
This is the first time I have set up on my own as a sole practitioner. This has allowed me to have more control over the outcome. It’s also the first time setting up a business in a new community.
#5. What is your greatest success in business/what are you most proud of?
Leading the onsite team in helping to deliver a new school on the existing school grounds in the Wellington suburb of Northland. Designing and building our own home in Wellington and having it featured in the Here Magazine (Issue 11, 2022) and Stuff’s Life and Style section.
#6. What is a significant challenge facing your business/industry right now?
The cost of building versus people’s budgets and expectations. That, and the issues we are all facing with the changing climate.
#7. What is one common misconception about your industry?
That architects make a lot of money…
#8. If you could share one piece of advice with the business community, what
would that be?
Being new to the area, my advice would be to get involved in the community you live and work in. It’s a great way to meet people and network at the same time. I’m currently helping the Friends of Cooney Reserve with a project to enhance that area to encourage more community use with better facilities.
Peter Shaw is a Registered Architect based in Ōmokoroa in the Bay of Plenty. With substantial experience in both residential and commercial architecture and a background in carpentry and project management, he can help with design, consent documentation, and project management. For more information, or to get in touch with Peter email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit his website.