Healthcare Projects Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How does the design of my project begin and what is the process?

    The design process begins with a meeting between the Client and the Architect at a location convenient to the Client. Not only does this establish a face-to-face relationship, but it allows the Architect to better understand the Client's practice and the goals of their project. Please see the series of diagrams to the right for an example of the space planning process.

  2. Will your firm provide a proposal that itemizes the services and costs for my project up front?

    Yes, all projects begin with a determination of what the appropriate Scope of Services will be for your project. A document is then prepared which outlines the services and costs for the project. The project begins when this agreement is approved by the Client.

  3. What is included is the Architectural Scope of Services for a typical project?

    Although each project is unique, generally Space Planning and Preparation of Construction Documents based upon the approved space plan are included. Services extend through city approval for the building permit.

  4. Is engineering included in the Scope of Services?

    Engineering services included typically consist of Mechanical, Plumbing and Electrical engineering, in addition to Architectural design. In most cities, fire protection design (Fire Sprinkler and/or Fire Alarms) is a separate permit by the Fire Department and is obtained by the Contractor.

  5. How long does it take to obtain a City Building Permit to proceed with the construction of my project?

    The time required for the City Plan Review process varies and is dictated by each City Building Department and their current staffing and work load. The City Plan Review process customarily consists of one or two submittals, allowing comments unique to each project, new city requirements to be addressed, etc. Some cities offer alternate methods of permitting which often provides a faster permit process.

  6. Are there any services not normally included that may be needed to complete the drawings and obtain the Building Permit?

    Yes, some examples of supplemental services that may be required for a project are field verification of existing building conditions and input to computer (if that information has not been provided to us) field verification of existing site conditions by engineers, and preparation of reports by the Mechanical and Electrical Engineers demonstrating compliance with the Energy Conservation Code, required by some cities.

  7. What other services are available for my project?

    Although the normal services are focused on the design of the project through city approval for the building permit, the Client may have a need for ancillary services. Some examples of services that you may need or desire are Interior Design services, assistance in bidding your project, construction administration, etc. The total level of service can be tailored to your need and comfort level.

  8. How is Construction Administration handled as my project is built?

    Construction Administration/Observation service is available to the extent you would like. A suggestion for a minimal level of Construction Administration service would consist of two on-site meetings with you and your Contractor. One at project "rough-in" stage, prior to installation of drywall, to review locations of outlets, plumbing, backing for mounted equipment, etc. and the other at project completion for final walk-though with punch list to follow. We are also available to review monthly contractor applications for payment on your behalf.

  9. What are reimbursable expenses and how are they handled?

    Reimbursable expenses are out-of-pocket expenses such as reproduction charges, delivery of documents, computer plots, mileage, review fees paid to building authorities, etc. These expenses are billed to you monthly at cost plus our current handling and administration fee.

  10. Do you also offer Interior Design services?

    Interior Design is not usually part of our initial proposal, but is available. Interior Design services would be tailored to your specific needs and may include such items as selection of specific finishes (color selections, furniture, artwork, specialty millwork design, specialty lighting, signage), along with associated time for meetings and coordination.

  11. To what extent can a Healthcare project be designed "green"?

    We can incorporate many sustainable practices into your design. Passive day lighting, low-volume plumbing fixtures, and efficient light fixtures may even reduce costs in the long run. Recycled or renewable finish selections help to reduce the environmental impact of your build-out, and effective design ensures minimal construction waste, both now and in the event of future remodeling. Well-engineered mechanical and electrical systems ensure efficiency and longevity of equipment, but also provide optimal conditions for users.

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