Exciting News!

This is something that I’ve worried over and been waiting to hear back for several months. Earlier this week I was approved to start taking the Architectural Registration Exams! This is going to be a long process and probably take several years to complete. There are 6 exams in total and they will cover everything from business practices and contracts to codes and construction administration.

I began working for Dann in 2000 and again in 2015. I’ve worked directly under his tutelage for over 13 years. As it turns out, that’s the exact number of years that New Hampshire requires for anyone who wishes to take the registration exam who does not have a 4 year degree or Masters of Architecture. I also had the good fortune to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity for many years and was able to learn about building homes from the other end of the plans. Between the two, I was able to complete the broad range of competencies that are also required of all licensure candidates, no matter where they live. I needed to go back the full 5 years allowed for competency credits, totaling over 7000 hours.

So now I start on the next steps on the path to becoming a licensed architect. It’s a little overwhelming, but I just need to remember what I would teach the volunteers at Habitat. When you look at how to build a house, all together it’s very overwhelming when you’re just learning. But if you take it one piece at a time, framing the wall, laying the subfloor, or sheet rocking a room, it’s manageable and not so scary.

Beautiful Renovation/Addition in New Durham

The clients came to us looking to add a residence over an existing 3 car garage with storage space. The building had been constructed in such a way that a second story could be added. However, it has an interesting angle that needed to be taken into consideration. The plan was to add 2 bedrooms, an office and large great room that opened to an exterior deck looking out at the lake. The client wanted to keep two of the three garage spaces and turn the rest of the bottom floor into useable space for the family.

The scale of the home was kept down by tucking the top floor under the roofline. Three large dormers on the front bring in lots of light and create additional built-in storage. A unique stair was created to minimize the amount of circulation space needed and keep the home as open as possible. When standing in the loft on the top floor, you can appreciate the bend in the home while looking over the great room below.

So What Can a Designer Do?

Since Dann’s death, I’ve had several inquiries as to what I can legally do for clients. As it turns out, I can do a lot. First and foremost, I can design one and two-family homes. I can also do renovations, additions and garages. This will satisfy most of the clients we typically work with. Our permit sets will still contain all the drawings and specifications customers are accustomed to receiving from us. The only difference will be the need for the contractor to add the framing drawings from the lumber yard for engineered lumber (used for beams and other structural members) to the permit set.

Most commercial and multi-family construction does require the use of a registered architect as there are a lot more regulations and safety requirements to adhere to. We typically don’t do a lot of commercial or multi-family design, however, I am hopeful that we will be able to add those services in the near future.

If you’re curious and would like to read the exact statute, you can find it at https://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/rsa/html/XXX/310-A/310-A-52.htm

Dann Norris Batting Associates is Here!

Well it’s been a bit since our last post. We’ve officially created Dann Norris Batting Associates. In the months and weeks leading up to Dann’s death, we had been talking about transferring the business to me. We had a date to speak with an attorney to discuss how the transition should go and what to do to prepare for it. Unfortunately, the appointment happened only a few days before he passed. Since Dann Norris Batting Architect was a sole-proprietor we had to create a new business name and remove the word “Architect” since I am not a licensed architect.

We had been discussing what to call the business and I said I wanted to be able to honor Dann and all the wonderful things he’s taught me about good design, architecture and aesthetics. We discussed calling the business “DNB Designs” and “Dann Norris Batting Associates”. Dann wasn’t really able to speak while we were talking about this shortly before he passed, but I did notice he smiled just a little when I mentioned “Dann Norris Batting Associates” and thought he approves of this name.

What I didn’t realize at the time was that I was truly creating his legacy. I had decided that we should share some of Dann’s beautiful renderings during his service. After looking through various jobs and choosing which images to use, I realized that not all of his logos were quite the same. It turns out that while he was still in Massachusetts his business was called “Dann Norris Batting Associates”.

We have lost a Great Architect.

Dann at his table explaining a design. 1997

On Wednesday, January 25, 2023, Dann passed away in his home with his wife and daughter at his side. Some of you may have known that Dann had been in failing health for the past year and had been diagnosed with fatty liver disease this past summer. Although we knew his days were numbered, we were hoping to have more time with him. 

You can read his obituary at https://www.brewittfuneralhome.com/obituaries/Dann-N-Batting?obId=27148837#/obituaryInfo. Information about services are also listed on that website. 

Dann has been a great mentor and boss to me over many years. He has asked that I take over his business, and we are in the process of making the transition. Under his tutelage, I have gained enough years and experience to be able to sit for the Architectural Licensure Exam. He will be greatly missed, but I hope to keep his vision and design sense alive for many more years to come.

Liz Rakich

The latest in the work of DNB!

Working closely with the owner and her builder father, we have created a wonderful new modest sized home on the island of Martha’s Vineyard.

The design is basically a collection of sheds connected together to form a mostly single story home with 3 bedrooms, 2 1/2 baths with an open living, dining, kitchen area. There is also a modest sized loft/office within the center module.

This modern design is reminiscent of some of the old fishing shanties found along the coastal areas of both Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket.

This wonderful modest sized new home will serve the owners well in the coming years.

We’ve moved again – to a permanent location!

Yes folks, we have moved – again! But this time it’s to a permanent location above our garage in beautiful Brentwood New Hampshire. Dann designed this office space to be functional and compact, and we happily moved in and got settled quickly as the space was designed for exactly what we need – because that’s what a good architect does!

Window to the Water: recently completed dnb design

What an incredible view to the water as you approach this lake house on Governors Island in Gilford NH! To be able to frame a view like this takes a special eye. Framing a view so that you don’t take in the entire vista gives it a kind of quality that you just can’t get otherwise. It’s wonderful to be able to stand on a lakeside porch and see the sweeping panorama around you. But that panorama takes on a whole new look when it’s more narrowly focused through the frame of a window. It’s like having a live photo in your own home and each window “photo” is slightly different. That’s one of the beauties of good architectural design.

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