The design process for any architectural project generally follows through multiple stages of varying time lengths. Beginning from pre-design, any project undergoes multiple iterations and consultations before project completion.
1. Pre-Design & Site Analysis
This is the first step for your architectural project. This covers the gathering of all information required prior to commencing design. Scope of work would typically include:
- Site analysis and gathering planning and council information
- Measuring the existing building
- Developing brief
- Gathering initial advice from separate consultants
You may already have a lot of this information
2. Preliminary Sketch Design
This next step involves relating the client brief with the opportunities of the site through a series of iterations and solutions. Preliminary design is informed by a myriad of parameters including visual prospect, daylight orientation, existing trees / structures, town-planning requirements, and other applicable elements.
Initially, this stage is concerned with developing shape, forms, and establishing spatial relationships. In some cases, we also address the look and style in terms of colour and materiality.
For preliminary design, the scope of works would typically involve:
- Proposed layout plans,
- Key external sketches, and
- Study cross-sections.
Successful preliminary designs normally integrates feedback derived from back-and-forth dialogue and communication with the client.
3. Developed Design
The next step is the refining of design ideas and shaping of a final building design, while structural and services design continue to be addressed. Space and form planning for both inside and out will be finalised with material selections and palates.
External consultants like engineers for the project will be engaged at this stage. For kitchens, we have found it best to involve a kitchen/cabinetry company at this stage. Developed design drawings would typically involve:
- Resolved floor plans, site plan, elevations and key sections
- Finalised space planning, exterior forms, services, materials, and structural design
- Product specifications and cost estimation
- Developed 3D computer model
- Engaging with an interior design service
- Meeting with required consultants
- Preliminary engineering design
In addition, a quantity surveyor is recommended at this stage to gain a more comprehensive and independent costing to check that the construction costs reconcile with the budget.
4. Resource Consent
If a Resource Consent application is required for a project, it is generally performed on a hourly time charge basis.
Resource Consents typically involve:
- A written Assessment of Effects on the Environment (AEE),
- Additional drawings/documents required for neighbours sign-off, and
- Council lodgement and answering council queries.
5. Contract Documentation
These final stages further develop the design into detailed construction drawings, and complete necessary documentation for consent applications and building works.
We generally allow 6-12 weeks for processing Building Consent documentation that is lodged with the Council or Local Authority.
- Working drawings including plans, sections, elevations, schedules, and construction details for consent applications and contract builder
- Detailed specification of all products and materials
- Finalised engineering design
- Ensuring compliance with codes and regulations
- Building Consent and/or Resource Consent lodgement with Council (allow 6-8 weeks each for processing)
6. Tendering and Negotiations
This stage of the process prepares the final design for construction through tendering for contractors to execute construction. We supply clients an appropriate schedule of services, with an agreed hourly rate charge.
The tendering process begins with the preparation of contract documentation and tender documents for supply to selected tenderers. There may be queries from the various contractors and sub-contractors which may prompt document revisions and issuing any notices to tenderers.
Overall, this stage typically involves:
- Assessing and analysing suitable contractors,
- Checking tender compliance,
- Recommending a main contractor, and
- Preparing tender report.
The stage concludes with a selected contractor and notifying all tenderers of the results.
7. Contract Administration
We offer our clients a schedule of services we see as appropriate for this phase, charged at an hourly rate. We would like to confirm your requirements for this phase once Contract Documentation is nearing completion.
We prefer to confirm the requirements for construction phase services when Contract Documentation is nearing completion. Contract Administration typically involves:
- Scheduling and recording minutes from regular site meetings,
- Answering project queries and resolving architectural matters,
- Checking shop drawings, providing extra drawings as needed,
- Processing instructions through Variation Price Requests, site instructions, and variation orders
- Ensuring prices are fair and reasonable,
- Administrating and certifying project payments,
- Inspecting and approving Practical and Final Completion, and
- Administrating maintenance defects during the maintenance period.