These are only my opinions, please do not take anything out of context. yes I work as a Consultant and yes I have worked with this architect before. NO, my offices nor I have had any contact with this Architect...yet
... I have my marketing person keeping an eye on it...no reason I cant make money on both ends right?
I agree that usually there are bids to go out, and concept designs to be done, and then the client would pick a winner.
Seeing as this arch is in Ft. Wayne, it is not unheard of to award a project to an architect that is local, expecialy since they have a good base on these types of projects. It is a great way to save money on a project. Plus they may have talked privately with this architect working out a set fee for design. Remember their big selling point on getting a License for gambling is that it will bring in 1500 jobs to Ft. Wayne. So...why not award a Ft. Wayne Local to keep it all locale and keep the money flowing there.
With the Economy being where its at I am sure they worked out a cheap price
. Many Many Architects now are laying off and slicing their hourly fees by as much as 40% I have seen. Time to build is now, while its cheap.
Bids however will go out to other "Consulting firms" that this architecture firm does not cover. Such as Infrastructure for Audio Video, Telecommunications, Security, and Acoustics. Some of which can be covered by the electrical team but most likely will not.
This said Architecture firm is basically a full building company. Meaning they do not need to go to other MEP companies to full fill the project. Which is a good selling point for any contract to be won. Dealing with 1 office is way easier and cost effective then dealing with an Architect, Mechanical firm, Electrical firm and Plumbing/Fire Protection firm.
There is nothing on the Architects site for this yet. but there could be a gag order on this project right now where they the architect can not release info.
I suspect the PR legit. I am sure that the Architect involved would not be too happy about having their name used in a Public PR with out actually being awarded the project.
I guess we will have to wait and see. They have not announced that they have received a license yet for gambling once that happens they are good to go on design.
That's when you hit the Jackpot.