The architectural work typically moves through these phases: Feasibility, Programming and Predesign, then Schematic Design, Design Development, Construction Documents, Bidding, Permit, and Construction.

Architects prepare a set of architectural drawings and specifications, which with the consultant work (drawings, calculations, and specifications), form the final “construction documents” package that is used for construction, bidding, and permitting. These documents essentially speak to three audiences, and serve as part of the contract between the owner and general contractor. They should be referred to by document, date, and preparer in the agreement with the contractor.

The work we typically do in our office assumes that we not only create the “permit” set of drawings for construction, but also a “bid set” for use by the contractor during pricing. This adds in drawings that the city does not concern itself with as part of plan check, such as the “interior elevations” that illustrate the wall layout of walls with tile, cabinets, and new trim; so we do these at  rooms such as Kitchens, Baths, and at least one wall of a wall with baseboard and window trim to make crystal clear the scope of work for the builder. We have found that this achieves the best results.

Architects typically coordinate the building permit process, and are on hand during construction to review the construction work and modify the design as needed in response to such issues as existing conditions, code issues, and scope changes.