Well thought through spaces are timeless and adapt to the life changes of their users.
Understanding and producing great design requires relentless sensitivity, listening and observation of the art of living.
Massage all the ideas into one cohesive package to enhance clear communication with the people who will price the work.
Construction Documents & Permits
CDs are like an instruction manual for your project to which the Contractor is legally responsible to follow.
Creating the right team to build the design is critical to the success of the project.
Working with the trades as the representative of our clients is one of the most rewarding parts of our jobs – to be on the project assembly team.
What else might you need? We have a wide range of skills and experience at your service.
In the beginning, we establish goals and objectives together with the owner. We gather relevant information, such as budget and how the adjacent spaces are used, and identify priorities to develop a scope for a project. During this phase we measure and photograph the existing condition of the building, perform a site analysis to determine the physical characteristics of the site, like solar orientation, topography, plantings, prevailing winds, etc. We also identify potential restrictions and requirements by the local building departments, state and federal regulations that may impact the project.
During this phase, which is sometimes also referred to as conceptual design, we take the program and begin to explore different ideas with space diagrams, conceptual sketches, and 3D models to illustrate spatial relationship, form and scale of different options for the owner to review.
Some architectural instruments for this schematic design phase include a site plan, floor plans, sections and elevations with overall dimensions, and other illustrative materials, such as renderings or computer models. The phase ends with a Schematic Design Meeting with the clients to go over the schemes and discuss options.
The client’s input regarding preferences during the schematic design phase is then narrowed down to one design path. The drawings are further refined and detailed. Preliminary specification are made for finishes, materials, windows and doors. We make preliminary determinations for mechanical, electrical, plumbing and structural pieces. A reflected ceiling plan or an electric plan will be sketched to depict lighting options. At this point all the drawings may be coordinated with the input from specialty consultants. Deliverables of this phase often include more defined floor plans, sections and elevations with full dimensions, also door and window schedules, and an outline of specifications. This will become a Pricing Set.
Construction Documentation is the phase when the approved drawings are transformed into detailed, technical drawings which will become part of the legal contract with the Contractor. Additionally specification outline, schedules and details define the projected building so that it can be priced accurately and built. The final input from structural engineer and potential consultants is integrated into the Construction Documentation set. A simplified set of Construction Documents are submitted to the building department by the contractor for the building permit. If a variance or special permit is necessary, we are happy to prepare all necessary documentation and represent you as the owner in front of the Zoning board of Appeals. We also help with applications within the historical district, with wetland clarifications and all other jurisdictional restrictions.
During our combined four decades of work experience we have made many contacts. We are ready to leverage the personal experiences we have with our large local network of tradespeople and contractors on behalf of our clients. And we love meeting new people too.
The Construction Document set will be sent to several contractors of the owner’s choice. We can help find potential contractors, assist with a formal bidding process where applicable, review incoming bids, and provide analysis of the different figures received from the builders. The homeowner then selects one general contractor and enters into a negotiated agreement.
The architect’s main responsibility in the Construction Administration phase is to help the Contractor to build the project as specified in the Construction Documents We will answer questions in a timely manner, preparing additional sketches for clarification, issuing change orders, review shop drawings, and discuss new options which may arise during construction with the owner. We will visit the site during the construction process, address any field conditions as they arise, and write field reports for documentation of progress and quality of work, to avoid potential conflicts arising between owner and contractor. The smoothest construction process is always desirable for all participants.
- LEED certification, energy efficiency and sustainability consulting
- Aging in place design and Universal Design standard approach
- Pre-purchasing consulting and pre-inspection walk throughs
- Design feasibility studies
- Interior design including furniture, finishes and artwork
- Landscape and garden design consultation
- Guidance in materials, products and color selections
- Representation at jurisdictional boards and commissions