About Us

Architects Ring and Associates


ARAA - Canberra Architects


The pursuit of design excellence is the principle aim of Architects Ring and Associates.

ARAA strive to deliver excellent design, which is compliant with planning controls, environmental standards, public expectation, building regulations and create a beautifully designed home for you to live in.

Excellent design adds value, aesthetically and financially and is an investment in your lifestyle. The real value is realised when you are living comfortably in a well designed environment, extended by the longevity of the building. This is the true long term value of a well designed home.

ARAA consistently achieves exceptional and award winning results for their clients. The quality and standard of work is a direct result of ARAA’s architectural design process based on their design principles and philosophy.


Architectural Design


The standard and quality of work our clients have come to expect is achieved through a well refined, thorough design process and ensures the consistent capability to achieve project approval in a dynamic and difficult planning environment.

The Design Phase is the single most important phase in the entire architectural process, especially when it comes to designing homes. It is ARAA’s design process which adds the most value for their clients. This is primarily due to their client focus; the time and effort invested in developing and refining the design brief with their clients.

Every project and each client’s requirements are unique. ARAA designs aims to be stylish and functional, maintaining a high aesthetic standard that is practical and cost efficient.


Our role as architects is to develop creative opportunities through analysis of all the competing forces: The clients design brief, our concepts, the site constraints and government statutory regulations and building codes.


Through responsive design ARAA constantly explores different methods of design seeking to develop constraints into opportunities resulting in modern, innovative design solutions.


Architectural Process


Shown below is the process visual representation of the architectural design process from the initial design consultation stage to the completion of your architecturally designed home.

The Design Phase; Design Brief, Site Analysis and Sketch Design, is comprised of the five clearly defined modules revealing the methodology used by ARAA in designing your home or extension. It is this process that ensures every detail is attended to with nothing left to chance.


Click the headings below for more information regarding the individual stages

design brief
site analysis
sketch design
approval da
plans ba
builder selection


1. Data Collection

The data collection phase gathers all the information necessary and commences with your design brief.

The Client’s Design Brief

It all starts with you – Your wishes are our highest priority. During the Design Consultation ARAA methodically works to develop your ideas, distil and clarify them to deliver exactly what you want in your home. This ultimately forms the basis of your design brief.

The brief consists of the number and type of rooms, the styles and features you would like, the number one ‘must have’ in your new home. It is a good idea to start a portfolio; find pictures that represent your style and taste, your inspiration for what you like and want in different rooms, furniture, storage, kitchens, bathrooms, colours, materials and other ideas to show the look you are after.

Other information gathered includes; a Site survey, Location and contextual considerations, Development restrictions i.e. Plot ratio, trees, easements. There are the economic aspects; the budget, financial considerations and the capital investment. Building regulations (ACTPLA, TAMS), Historical references, Heritage area, the language of the suburb and Family expectations.


2. Site Analysis

The site is considered in the following context as we plan the required areas using bubble and relationship diagrams. There are vehicular provisions, the provision of services and appropriate symbolic considerations. Northern sun, and natural light considerations, existing vegetation, existing services and the existing driveway all have to be included in the site analysis.


3. Site Appreciation

This sketch shows an analysis of the first two stages, the site constraints and the site opportunities:
The Vistas from the site
The solar access to the site
The opportunities of the existing landscape and trees

Site access, services and set backs are all demonstrated in this sketch. Along with Spatial and planning relationships with practical and adaptable circulation alternatives all shown in the site appreciation phase.


4. Sketch Design

In this phase you are presented with the initial bubble diagrams and schemes that show the process. This allows ARAA to gain further insight, more information and clearer direction from our client.

Ideas are explored and expanded during this stage to create more solutions relative to the site. With different ideas of the plan proposed and alternative design ideas considered and constraints prioritised.

Regular meetings with the client enable the preferred scheme to be chosen, and allow for continued designing and refinement of the plans for the preferred scheme.


5. Final Sketch Plans

Although it is called the ‘final sketch plan’, this phase is about changing the plans to achieve a better result.

The plans, perspectives, sections and elevations are presented and walk through model are created for you to view the house as a whole. This enables you “walk through” and experience your home via a Virtual Tour of the 3D model of your home.

The purpose is to allow you to see the layout, the solar penetration to the house and to determine the necessary changes to the design to create a better result.

The design is critiqued, and all points of view are taken into account in order to determine where the design can be improved. The plans, elevations and perspectives are amended and the final design is presented.


Development Application Stage

Once the final design is complete and signed off by the client, ARAA will commence the development application (DA) to present to ACTPLA to obtain development approval.

There is a comprehensive list of drawings to be produced specifically for this application process.

This is a challenging stage that requires ARAA’s constant communication with all parties; ACTPLA, TAMS, Heritage, Tree Preservation, ACTEW, and many other authorities to obtain approval.

Over the past 20+ years Architects Ring & Associates have developed comprehensive contacts with the various government regulatory authorities. ARAA’s thorough design process and comprehensive dialogue and well developed relationships with the departments ensure the consistent capability to achieve Development Application approval.


Building Application Stage

Once Development Approval has been obtained:

We add detail and technical information to the DA plans.

This provides the required information to gain competitive pricing and to build accurately and in line with what we all expect. To eliminate guess work and potential for changes, of deviations from the clients and our expectations.

Coordination, compliance and checking are critical parts of this process.

To complete this we need to coordinate closely with a series of consultants, including structural engineering and others depending on the complexity of the project.

It needs to be reviewed to ensure compliance with the relevant building code and Australian standards.

We need to review our design against that of the consultants, ensuring the components of their design fit with our vision and don’t impact on the design. We also complete internal checks to ensure the work issued is to a professional standard and our office standards

Plans are then issued for Building Approval. This is with a registered certifier who will review the design and documentation against the requirements of the Development Approval and the requirements of the Building Code of Australia and Australian Standards.


Builder Selection

Selection of a builder is the next step, although this can be completed earlier depending on the selection method. We can either assist in a tender process or negotiation process.

Tender involves providing the aforementioned documentation to a series of builders and allocating a time fame for them to submit a price to complete the project. We then review the submissions together, consider all aspects – cost, experience, quality, timing etc to select a builder. It’s not always the lowest price!

Alternatively we can provide access to one of our preferred builders or a builder of the clients choice and engage them by negotiation of a contract price.



During construction we can act on behalf of the client in a superintendent role to observe the construction progress and workmanship and offer feedback to the owner. This helps ensure the building is being completed in line with the construction documentation, assists the owner in being confident in making progress payments for work completed, review shop drawings as they come in, provide inspections, respond to any RFI (requests for information).



Assist in defect inspections upon completion.