The Master Builder

A conversation with a well-known Architect-Developer Jonathan Segal about the evolution of his business model and the strategic advantages it gives him

Jonathan Segal is famous among architects for not only designing but also constructing and owning buildings. He teaches a popular course on the subject and has, over time, consolidated his work so that he alone controls the process (design, financial analysis, construction management, and property management) from start to finish. That allows him, he explains, to control every detail of the architectural design, not having to cede those decisions to an outside developer.

In this very engaging chat, we discuss the idea of a “master builder,” how it all but disappeared, and how he’s working to re-popularize the notion through his own work. In a short breakout conversation, we discuss his strategy for building a new building — from conception to completion — every 18 months. Hope you enjoy this chat with Jonathan Segal as much as I did!