DESIGN PROCESS

Good architectural design is a team process, resulting from clear communication and expectations, and where client involvement is encouraged.

The design process consists of five main phases: Programming, Schematic Design, Design Development, Construction Documents, and Construction Administration.

PROGRAMMING

The first step is developing a program by sitting down and discussing your needs, wish lists, and budget. We walk the site together to identify its unique opportunities such as sunlight and views. I am careful to preserve the natural beauty of the site. Along with this, a feasibility study of the site is made to determine what is allowed within the zoning code, such as building setbacks, easements, and height restrictions. I use this information along with creative ideas and attention to detail to achieve a design possessing both timeless quality and economy.

SCHEMATIC DESIGN

After we understand the goals, budget, and site, a schematic design is developed. This includes sketches, basic floor plans and exterior elevations. We explore as many or as few design alternatives as needed. Once the basic design is established and approved, we move on to the Design Development phase.

DESIGN DEVELOPMENT

Sometimes the Schematic Design and Design Development phases are combined at the beginning, depending on the size or scope of the project. This phase includes drawing the plans on Autocad, fine tuning the building size, and studying various design details. We also double check the plans to make sure that the client’s goals, large and small, are met. The interior finishes of the spaces becomes more defined, and the detailed drawings are reviewed and approved. It is at this phase where we contact a general contractor to get a rough estimate of the project. You may already have a contractor you want to work with, or I can help you select one.

CONSTRUCTION DOCUMENTS

This phase consists of adding all of the necessary information needed for obtaining a building permit. Besides the floor plans and exterior elevations, other drawings are developed such as the site plan, foundation plan, roof plan, building sections, floor framing plans, engineering plans, electrical plans, interior elevations, and wall details. Plumbing and electrical fixtures are selected, along with the flooring and other finish materials. It is these drawings and specifications that the contractor will use to finalize the price, and build the project.

CONSTRUCTION ADMINISTRATION

This phase is a small portion of the architect’s service, but is one of the most important aspects of the building process. The client, architect, and contractor work together as a team, and each play an important role in the success of the construction process.

The architect’s site visits are to ensure that the project is being built per the plans and specifications. As with all construction projects, there will be questions where the architect needs to be involved. Also, there may be unforeseen conditions where field modifications need to be made, which frequently affects the design and cost of the project. The architect’s input is important to ensure that the quality of the design is not compromised, and that the design intent is maintained.

Designing and building your own home or remodel is an exciting and rewarding experience. Whether your construction budget is large or small, whether your project is a custom home or a remodeled home, the design we develop together will lead to a home you will be proud to call your own.