Outline of the Architectural Design Process

Depending on the scope and program of the project there are many methods and options for design delivery.   In all of our work we strive for a productive and fullfiling collaboration with our clients.  Outlined below is a general breakdown of the work by phase for full architectural services.

Design Phases         

SCHEMATIC DESIGN:  The first phase of the project is to document the existing conditions and develop preliminary options reflecting the Owner’s needs.  The Architects work with the Owners to establish the program and scope for the project.

DESIGN DEVELOPMENT:  The approved schematic design is developed to set and describe the project.  Detailed information needed to obtain a realistic idea of the feasibility of the project is included.

CONSTRUCTION DOCUMENTS:  The project is described with drawings, details, and specifications to enable the Owner to be familiar with materials, design elements, fixtures, and finishes, etc.  Enough detail is included to enable the Contractor to establish a fair assessment of the costs and a firm price.  In addition to architectural design questions, structural, heating, plumbing, and electrical aspects of the project are defined as needed.  The Construction Documents are included as a part of the legal agreement that make up the contract between the Owner and the Contractor. It is the job of the Architect as the owners’ representative to administer the contract.

BIDDING/NEGOTIATION:  The goal of this stage is to obtain a construction price or bids from the Contractor(s).  The Architect will assist in reviewing the estimates, establishing a firm construction cost and in the negotiation and administration of the contract.

CONSTRUCTION ADMINISTRATION:  In this stage the Architect performs regular visits to the site to observe the progress and quality of the work;  and to determine in general if it is in accordance with the drawings and specifications.  The Architects assist in resolving unforeseen issues (especially common in renovation work); reviews and approves shop drawings, samples, materials, etc; reviews Contractors invoices and issues Certificates of Payment; reviews all changes in the work and issues Change Orders when necessary (mutually agreed to and signed by Owner, Architect and Contractor); issues Certificate of Substantial Completion;  issues final Certificate of Payment when it is determined all work has been completed.