Architecture is an in-depth process that involves planning, designing and constructing space while considering its functional, social and aesthetic aspects. Also encompassing cost estimating and construction administration, it requires an established and proven systematic approach. Whether you’re developing a residential property, remodeling a restaurant, or renovating a hotel complex, our experienced Architecture firm has developed a process to accomplish these goals.
The Pre-Design phase gives us the opportunity to get to know you and begin to understand your preferences, budget, and goals. During preliminary discussions, we’ll help you clarify your functional needs, general aesthetic goals, desired green or sustainable options and projected budget.
In this phase we’ll meet with you to determine the scope of the project. After contacting the city or county planning departments to determine the project limits, we’ll define a program to outline the course of the project. If required, we’ll complete an existing conditions survey which includes field measurements and photo documentation of your existing structure, as well as creation of general as-built drawings of the existing structure. We’ll also look at any sketches or inspiration images you may have.
2. SCHEMATIC DESIGN
The Schematic Design phase includes several meetings with you in which we’ll present floor plan and elevation options based on the program defined during the Pre-Design phase. These sketches will be used to facilitate discussions about the project requirements. They will also establish the conceptual design of the project, illustrating the scale and relationship of the project components. The primary objective in this phase is to arrive at a clearly defined, feasible concept and to present it in a form that helps you understand the project and explore alternative solutions. Typically, several schemes are offered and discussed before arriving at the final concept to be further developed in the next phase.
3. DESIGN DEVELOPMENT
The Design Development phase is based on the approved Schematic Design documents and any refinements in the program, schedule or budget. Meetings continue and drawings are developed to a more detailed level to minimize the possibility of major modifications being needed during the development of Construction Documents. The Design Development documents are computer drafted (using the latest AutoCAD Architecture and/or Sketchup Pro software), to-scale drawings that will illustrate the project as it will look when constructed. These drawings typically consist of a site plan, floor plans, exterior elevations and diagrammatic building sections as necessary to convey the project intent. Additionally, we can begin preliminary selections for equipment, windows, doors, floor coverings, lighting fixtures, plumbing fixtures and other interior design components.
Preliminary selections of major building systems and construction materials will be noted on the drawings or described in writing. The Design Development phase further develops the approved designs to incorporate code requirements, accessibility, structural, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and other systems into the design.
3. INTERIOR DESIGN
We offer the following Interior Design services as a standard part of your project:
(1) Diagrammatic F.F.&E. plans showing locations of fixtures, furnishings and equipment.
(2) Schematic plans for cabinetry, mill work, lighting, and other interior decorative details
(3) Rough-in electrical and plumbing fixture locations as needed for construction documents.
Under separate agreement, detailed schedules such as lighting, plumbing fixtures, appliances, and interior finishes may be provided. We are also available to assist in the procurement of merchandise and furniture, as well as detailed finishes, cabinetry details, wall colors, floor materials, lighting fixtures, plumbing fixtures, and window treatments. In addition, we’ll let you know about cost-effective sustainable options, and we can take an inventory of existing fixtures and furniture that might be re-used in the project.
4. CONSTRUCTION DOCUMENTS
Upon completion and approval of the Design Development phase, we’ll create the Construction Documents for your project. These important documents contain all the necessary information to apply for with the the intent of obtaining a building permit and construct the project, including detailed project dimensions along with structural, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing layouts. The Construction Documents will include drawings, details and notes that establish the design intent for your project. They’ll serve as the primary means of communication between the Architect, plan reviewers, inspectors, contractors, and Architectural Review Boards/Committees, if applicable.
5. GOVERNMENT REVIEW
Once the Construction Documents are completed, the Government Review process begins. For more complex projects, this process begins earlier to facilitate preliminary reviews and address particular issues that may be drivers in the design. Typical Government Review involves submitting the Construction Documents to the city plan reviewer, who will prepare a comment list and may request additional information to clarify specific parts of the project and address compliance with governing codes. We will provide responses to these comments and continue the review process as necessary to obtain a building permit as quickly as possible.
6. BIDDING ASSISTANCE
If a general contractor has not already been selected, we’ll help establish a list of prospective bidders. We will assist solicitation for cost estimates from qualified general contractors based on the Construction Documents. We will respond to questions from prospective bidders and provide clarifications as necessary and answer questions during bid review. The final selection of a general contractor will be based on feedback from the Architect for an educated and well vetted decision. Although, the Bidding Assistance phase is a small percentage of the overall Architecture process, our expertise can save you a great deal of frustration and expense.
7. CONTRACT ADMINISTRATION
Once you’re ready to start construction, our experienced Architecture firm can help ensure that the building phase of your project runs smoothly.
8. GENERAL ADMINISTRATION
Just Architects can administer the contract between you and your contractor by periodically observing construction of the project.
Specific duties include:
(1) Evaluating work for compliance with the Construction Documents
(2) Reviewing shop drawings, material samples, and product samples
(3) Reviewing the results of material tests and inspections
(4) Review and approving the contractor’s requests for payment
(5) Handling requests for design changes during construction
(6) Administering the completion and close-out process of your project
The Architect will also attend dispute resolution conferences and other meetings at your request. Contract Administration services commence with the award of the initial contract for construction and terminate when the Certificate of Occupancy is issued.
Getting a project completed that is built as it was designed, and on budget, requires considerable experience, time and effort-all of which Just Architects is able to provide.
9. EVALUATIONS OF THE WORK
We will review and approve, or take other appropriate action upon, the contractor’s submittals such as shop drawings, product specifications, and samples. During the construction we’ll respond to requests by the general contractor for additional information about the Construction Documents. These requests my be made by telephone, e-mail, or text message, and we’ll respond withing two business days. If we think it’s appropriate, the Architect will prepare, reproduce and distribute supplemental drawings and specifications in response to requests for information by the Contractor.
10. CHANGES IN WORK
The Architect will review change orders prepared by the contractor for your approval. He’ll also help you analyze and negotiate requested change orders, and he’ll counter-sign change orders you’ve approved. Generally, the Architect is authorized to make minor changes in the work if they don’t increase costs or extend the schedule. He’ll also make decisions on aesthetic matters if he finds them to be consistent with the intent expressed in the Construction Documents. The Architect will recommended solutions to special problems or changing conditions that arise during construction. And we’ll prepare, reproduce and distribute supplemental drawings and specifications in response to requests for information by the Contractor as necessary.
11. PROJECT COMPLETION
At the project’s conclusion, the Architect will conduct a site visit to determine whether work has been substantially completed and prepare a written punch-list, certificates of completion and other necessary construction close-out documents. Our final inspection will be conducted with you to check conformance of the work to the Construction Documents and to verify the accuracy and completeness of the final punch list. After construction is complete, Just Architects will inspect and photograph the finished project.