Most architects consider this the best building in the Pacific Northwest,
Finnish architect Alvar Aalto's Mt. Angel Seminary Library, Mt. Angel, Oregon, completed in 1972. A masterpiece that is a symphony of light and space.
Why an Architect?
An Architect designed house is usually superior to other houses. And a better investment.
Architects have extensive technical and design training, they see the world a bit differently than other professions. They are many times original thinkers who hopefully listen well to clients' needs and desires. Architects compose space using natural light, artificial light, volume, sequence, color, sound, texture, views, and landscape. They incorporate design into the more pragmatic concerns of a project, including durability. Regulatory, energy and structural requirements are also factored in. A creative architect may be advantageous during regulatory reviews. Green design, healthy buildings, and innovative energy concepts are also important to consider in a residential design. On the service and design end, architects much more fully document projects with details and specifications, and act as an owner's representative on the construction site. More is figured out on paper before construction, and this can have a positive impact on construction cost.
So, hire a good architect, one who you get along with and trust, and you will almost surely get a project that is better than you had even dreamed of.