Departure's design process reflects methodology which allows for great results. There's usually lots of possible solutions to each problem, the question becomes what is the right design solution for this project. From an esthetic and cost standpoint, finding the right sweet spot is the goal for every project. As a result, we have found that an effective + fun design process that can allow design decisions and team input at the right time throughout the entire project while also ultimately creating a responsible and more meaningful solution.
For this reason, we strongly advocate for an "integrated design process". This is where a General Contractor is also involved from the initial design phases of the project and an integrated part of the team. There are countless advantages of this approach but the main reason is simply about "overall results". This is a proven way of obtaining the right results for all parties. Where our Clients do not already have a qualified General Contractor, we assist them with finding just the right fit. We have worked with numerous very-good builders, large and small companies who also advocate for this type of approach and have an appreciation of these overall goals.
Below is an example of our basic typical design process and approach showing the different phases and the related tasks..
Concept Design Phase
- Create a "program" of our Client's needs (functional, esthetic, etc).
- Establish project management (goals, protocols, milestones for the project, establish the team, etc.). - Obtain/Create CAD background drawings (obtain CAD backgrounds and/or measure existing spaces, take applicable photographs, inventory any existing furniture and equipment that will be re-utilized, etc.).
- Understand the physical part of the project (including site and building, existing structural, mechanical, plumbing, electrical systems). - Research and understand all relevant jurisdictional issues / criteria relating to zoning and building permitting. - Based on our Client's program, create conceptual design ideas for our Client’s review. In this early phase, several possible concepts may emerge that we may want to consider and evaluate against each other.
Concept Design Costing Phase
- Create a concept design costing drawing package designed to allow "preliminary costing” to occur.
- The Architect will assist the General Contractor where needed to explain concept ideas in order to produce accurate costing for this phase.
- Team meeting to discuss the concepts and their respective costs.
- Determine design direction.
Design Development Phase
- Building on the approved concept design, define the project in greater detail (colors, patterns, fixtures, materials and building systems are all examined and evaluated in greater detail).
Design Development Costing Phase
- Create a design development package designed to allow updated costing to occur.
- Team meeting to discuss the design progress and respective cost.
It's first..........about listening very carefully, without preconceived ideas about the solution. Listening to our client about their dreams and desires. Listening to the site and the what it allows. Listening to understand the budget constraints and schedule impacts. Listening to our other team members like electricians, plumbers, heating and air conditioning contractors, framers, etc. who also will bring valuable knowledge to the project.
Combining all of this information, we set forth on design solutions that are pertinent and responsive to each project.