Commercial Process

Step 1: Schematic Design - Architectural Technologist / Designer

The first step in the process is to gather and analyze information and perform all the work necessary prior to actually designing your space. During this time we formulate a detailed "program" which defines your needs and objectives: function, size and relationship between spaces, character and image, and a host of other considerations that affect how you will operate your business. We analyze your existing or new space and determine the best placement interior partitions, millwork, furniture, sinks, special purpose space etc... During this stage we create a floor plan concept layout.

Step 2: Design Development - Architectural Technologist / Designer

Conceptual brainstorming and exploration define this portion of the design process. It begins with the creation of concept diagrams and rough sketches. During this time we determine the general layout, form and overall appearance of both the house and the site. Sketches, drawings and study models are prepared to help evaluate the ideas and concepts and set the final direction for refining the design. Once the size, layout and character of the business, we begin to design feature elements such as wall, cabinetry, bulkhead and built-in furniture. Drawings are prepared that describe some of the important technical details. Plans, elevations and sections through the crucial components are developed. At the end of this phase 70 to 80 percent of the design work will be complete. 

Step 3: Construction Documentation - Architect

Generally, the Architect will be required to be engaged. They will review the concept drawings and will begin the Construction Documentation and is the phase where the design is translated into the technical language of the contractor. Working Drawings (blueprints) and specifications are prepared which define in detail all of the materials that are to be incorporated into the space, where they are to be located and how they are to be installed. Although this phase is primarily intended for working out the technical aspects of the project, some design work also takes place. In addition, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, and finish materials (tile, carpet, paint colours, etc.) are selected.

Step 4: Mechanical, HVAC, Electrical Documentation - Engineer

Generally, an Engineer will be required to be engaged through the Architect. The architect will submit the architectural working drawings to the Engineer to begin the design and the Construction Documentation for the HVAC, mechanical, electrical and plumbing and is the phase where the design is translated into the technical language of the contractor. Mechanical - Electrical Drawings (blueprints) and specifications are prepared which define in detail all of the materials that are to be incorporated in the working drawings. This phase is based on a set fee by the engineer.

Step 5: Cost and Bidding - Contractor

An architect can assist you in obtaining competitive bids or negotiated proposals from a selected list of general contractors. The architect would prepare and distribute sets of drawings and specifications, answer contractor questions, interpret the documents, and prepare addenda (revisions to the original drawings or specifications). Once the bids are received, they will analyze the results and prepare the contract between you and the selected contractor.

Step 6: Construction

The final phase of the process is the construction. In this phase an architect can review the progress of the work and facilitate any changes that may be required. They can answer questions, review submittals and shop drawings (manufacturer's' drawings of specific elements to be incorporated within the space), and review monthly certificates of payment that are submitted by the contractor. Final selections of finishes and fixtures are also made here. Upon completion of this phase the architect thoroughly inspects your space to ensure that it is complete and ready for your use.