the Building Technology
Synergy between Architecture
& Construction Management
Architecture, as a design discipline, with a comprehensive ability to harmonise human culture with regard to both the natural and built environment, is more than satisfying the purely functional requirements of a building program. As the complexity of our societies are evolving, contemporary architecture became a multi-disciplinary field of expertise used in the aim to integrate construction technologies in the building production.
During the construction process, even a structure of modest proportions involves many skills and literally hundreds of different operations. This is where a Project Owner, whether public or private, can obtain great benefits from being assisted by a skilled Arkitekt/Engineer in the field of Architecture & Construction Management.
An information gathering phase that will be the foundation for the design phases to follow. In this initial stage, the Project Owner is perhaps looking to purchase land and develop a construction project or has already identified a new real estate. In any case, she/he has to define her/his requirements and delineate the budgetary constraints. Wherever you are on your path we, as architects, can help you understand and visualise the development potential of your future property by supplying you with a Feasibility Study. Preliminary research and information gathering would be required and include a clear project definition, which involves establishing broad project characteristics, such as location, performance criteria, size, layout, configuration and other owner requirements needed to establish the general aspects of the project.
Conceptual planning starts with the finalisation of the preliminary research and information gathering. The definition of the overall work is basically the responsibility of the owner, although a design professional has to be involved in order to provide technical assistance and advice. In this phase, we process an Architectural Program that mirror owners initial requirements into an efficient building design. This is when we start exploring design concepts, undertake a preliminary assessment of authority regulations, prepare a detailed site analysis and initiate the the design process with sketches and diagrams to adequately explain the concept and possible design options.
Conceptual planning stops short of detailed design, although a considerable amount of preliminary architectural and engineering work may be required during this phase. Design Development significantly advance into a refinement of the previously agreed concept . Architectural order is achieved by means of environmental protection, comfort and health, safety and welfare, durability and sustainability. A structural engineer will be added to the team at this stage and consultants for HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems may be needed depending on the complexity of the project. A preliminary cost estimate can be obtained for the owner’s consideration. If adjustments are necessary to bring the project scope in line with the construction budget, it is most efficient to do this sooner than later.
Most projects will require a planning or development application under the requirements of the local council or planning authority in your municipality or territory. During this phase we initiate the preparation of the Construction Documentation adding any additional information required to get a building permit. This is the information needed to show that the project complies with the applicable land use, building, energy codes and any other applicable guidelines and regulations required by the city or jurisdiction issuing the permit. The timeframes for the application process can vary between jurisdictions. Some may take a few weeks according to local regulations or depending on the size and scale of the project.
The design phase culminates in the preparation of the working drawings and specifications for the total construction program. This is the phase where drawings and specifications are thoroughly and precisely developed into a set of Construction Documents. These documentation is required in order to communicate the entire design intent into the next phase of the building process. The Construction Documents phase often requires a lot of more time than the previous phases, which can surprise owners/stakeholders after the previous stage, Design Development, where the design already have the impression to be complete. However, this is a critical step in the process of successfully executing the project you are investing in.
It is critical that the set of construction documents are clear, comprehensive and co-ordinated. If this documentation is missed, it could result in additional costs during the construction process. This stage involves a competitive process where a project owner receives proposals of work from potential contractors. The process is accelerated if building permits has already been granted and a start notice has been given. It is solely for the benefit of the owner if an architect is involved in the process. That way the owner will get professional advise when bids starts, in order to find the best fit for the project. This can be done through negotiated bids where builders go through construction documents and review materials and schedules.
While most of the architect’s work is done before any building construction starts, architects consistent presence during the construction phase is equally important. Having access to the architect's expertise and advice during this phase is one way to avoid costly delays - ensuring the construction contract between the owner and the contractor is executed under the terms of the contract. Construction Administration can involve regular site visits to review the progress of the work following the programme and to proactively address potential issues that may arise.
Once the construction phase is practically complete, the project will enter the Defects Liability Period and post-construction phase. The contract will usually allow for a period of time, the length of which varies depending on the type of contract used, where a percentage of the contract is withheld and not fully paid out to the contractor in case something goes wrong or a defect appears. At the end of the project, we assist the owner in developing a final 'Construction Punch List', document listing work that does not conform to contract specifications and requires immediate attention, to ensure all work is completed to the Project Owner's satisfaction.
Architectural Design & Structural Engineering
Through a combination of engineering and design expertise, we are profoundly committed to developing and delivering architectural solutions that improve people's lives, enhance communities and communicate meaning to customers in the early identification of project risks and actual feasibility.
Architectural Construction Documentation
Construction Documentation, ISO/TC 10/SC 8, is an essential and co-ordinated suite of very detailed documents that enables a builder/contractor to price and construct the project. It mainly consist of construction drawings and technical specifications (AMA 'Allmän Material- och Arbetsbeskrivning') that outline the requirements and standards to be met and describe the finishes and quality of work. This documentation also includes schedules with everything the contractor needs to know for a successful accomplishment of the building project.
Standards & Best Practices
Sweden has a long history of Construction Documentation Standards and Best Practices, ’Bygghandlingar 90’, which started in 1954. It has being replaced in 2022 by ’SIS Bygghandlingar’, partially adapted to the central BIM standard described as "building information modelling (BIM) according to the ISO 19650 series", which implies an efficient and effective transfer of information between those involved in each part of the life cycle of the building project.