Architectural planning

The architect usually begins to work when the site and the type and cost of a building have been determined.

The site involves the varying behaviour of the natural environment that must be adjusted to the unvarying physical needs of human beings; the type is the generalized form established by society that must be adjusted to the special use for which the building is required; the cost implies the economics of land, labour, and materials that must be adjusted to suit a particular sum.

Thus, planning is the process of particularizing and, ultimately, of harmonizing the demands of environment, use, and economy. This process has a cultural as well as a utilitarian value, for in creating a plan for any social activity the architect inevitably influences the way in which that activity is performed.