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NextFab benefits our development of design intent

Name: Chris Hanley
Title: Partner & Director of Technology, OLIN 
NextFab Corporate Member Since: 2009

As an award-winning landscape architecture, urban design, and planning practice with studios in Philadelphia and Los Angeles, OLIN develops projects ranging in scale from master plans for entire urban districts to intimate garden spaces and residences. In developing these projects, OLIN often relies on models to articulate concepts in ways that are engaging and easy to understand. To help develop and fabricate these models, they turn to the expertise of the NextFab staff, who have helped them bring many of their major design endeavors to life…

    • chris hanley

Q: How does OLIN utilize NextFab?
Chris Hanley: OLIN is both a corporate member and a studio member at NextFab, meaning we use the NextFab facilities to fabricate many of our models and our members are also able to take classes on a variety of topics offered by NextFab. Recently, some members of the studio took a class on eTextiles. We encourage them to take advantage of the classes offered there, even if it’s a bit “outside” of our specific discipline. Although eTextile technology is not something that we’ve utilized in project work before, the skills learned could have potentially interesting applications in future projects. 

Q: What’s your team’s favorite tool at NextFab?
CH: The laser cutter, without a doubt. Our members can take a digital file to NextFab, quickly cut it out, take it back to the team, and immediately begin making design decisions based on the model. NextFab has taken a process that used to be tremendously tedious and made it so much easier and faster. It helps in our design process because more time and energy can be focused on the “why” of a design idea, rather than “how will I get this model made?” We can look at the design model for what it is and make changes accordingly. 
Q: What sets NextFab apart?
CH: The people are what keep us coming back. They’re all talented and technically proficient, but are also craftspeople with incredible attention to detail. All of us at OLIN appreciate the fact that we can go to them and say, “Here’s what we’re trying to do…” And they respond with effective and inventive ways to help us realize our design intent. We are all big fans of NextFab!