Aman Yusuf, Dubai, Dubai architects, MEA, NORR, UAE architecture, Young architect of the month

Meet MEA’s young architect of the month Aman Yusuf

According to Karachi-born, Dubai-based architect Aman Yusuf, the UAE is the land of opportunity – especially if you’re in the design and build industries. The young AUS-graduate said that particularly in comparison to North America and the UK, the speed and density of the common workload in Dubai allows for a greater pool of experience.

“Dubai is a great place to work as opposed to the US or Canada, because a project from design to completion take way less time there. Dubai wants your work done quickly, and from the point of view of a young architect, it’s like being thrown in a pool,” he said.

“Young architects can achieve a lot more in Dubai. Sure, there are longer hours, days and weeks, but in the end you achieve so much more. I would say you can get double or triple the experience you would elsewhere.”

Yusuf, who admires the work of architecture heavyweights Bjarke Ingels and Santiago Calatrava, has been with NORR Architects for five years following a short internship he did with the company during his third year of university. In the time since he’s joined as a full time architect, he’s delivered a wealth of residential projects with Emaar, as well as mall and office complexes in Ajman and Iran.

While Yusuf doesn’t have a style that he’s looking to develop, he is loyal to ‘site forces’ – conditions of a project site that inform the design. “It can be the way the wind blows or the direction of the sun. These elements contribute to the decisions I make during the design process,” he said.

While Yusuf’s portfolio mostly consists of residential work, the architect is keen to get his hands on a project that allows for a little more creativity. For him, he sees design freedom in projects like mosques and churches.

“I would love to work on religious or cultural buildings,” he said. “They allow you to be a lot more creative. With residential projects, you’re bound by what the client wants you to do, but I would like to work on spiritual sanctuaries because I believe I can design those with more freedom.”