Design Stage in Construction

Here I will explain all the relevant stages and factors which need to be taken into account in the design stage of construction in relation to the RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) plan of work.RIBA Plan of Work
A Inception

Client establishes basic requirements, cost ranges, timetables, etc. He appoints architect and principle consultants. Basic project organization is established.

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Firstly the client will establish the basic requirements, cost ranges, timetables, etc and an architect will be appointed and they will be consulted for his help and professional opinion. The architect will be required to carry out the following jobs.

01 Obtain information about the site from the Client

02 Visit the site and carry out an initial appraisal

03 Assist the Client in preparation of Client’s requirements

04 Advise the Client on methods of procuring construction

05 Advise on the need for specialist contractors, sub-contractors and suppliers to design and execute parts of the Works.

06 Prepare proposals and make application for outline planning approval.

The architect will need at least one meeting client and will aim to establish the main parts and general outline of his requirements. It is important for the architect to plan his work so that it matches the fees he is receiving. These fees are charged at a percentage of the overall cost of the project depending on the job type.

At this stage the main financial concern is limitations. This is where money must not be overspent and prices for materials must stay acceptable. It is important that acceptable methods of communication are discussed during the early stages of the job.

B Feasibility

The following processes will be carried out at this stage.

01 Carry out such studies as may be necessary to determine the feasibility of Client’s requirements

02 Review the Client’s alternative design and construction approaches and the cost implications

03 Advise on the need to obtain planning permission, approvals under Building Acts and or other regulations or other statutory requirements.

04 Develop the Client’s requirements.

05 Advise on environmental impact and prepare a report

In this stage the architect will work out whether it is technically possible to construct the motel on our given site. In order to do this the architect will have to obtain information on costs, detailed information on the site and information on the clients requirements provided at the inception stage.

The local authority will be asked to supply us with there standard briefing checklist that will be used to record information. The highway authority will be consulted to carry out checks to determine that there are no problems with access relating to the site. These are all discussed in meetings.

Drawings and models will be produced to help determine feasibility. These will be purely visual aids only and will not consist of construction information or details. After the results of the investigations are gathered, the architect will report to the client and say whether or not it is a feasible proposition to meet the client requirements.


The brief is the means of communicating the client’s requirements to the professionals who will be responsible for implementing the Client’s instructions. The instructions may be to a lawyer, an architect, an interior designer, etc. Although there are many forms of brief, the brief for a construction project will be dealt with, in particular, in these notes, but the process and approach is applicable to any brief.

The brief should be based on a systematic appraisal of the Client’s requirements. The brief should not be based on preconceived ideas or assumptions. The brief may be developed through discussion and negotiation, which are used to clarify and define the Client’s needs. The brief will form the terms of reference for the work to be undertaken by the Professional.

As a set of instructions, the clearer and the more detailed the information supplied, the greater the probability that the service being provided will fulfil the Client’s requirements. Thus it is important that a brief gives very detailed information describing precisely the requirements of the Client. The brief, as well as communicating factual information, it should also define the constraints and criteria within which the professional must work. Such constraints and criteria may be the budget, the time scale, etc.

C Outline Proposals

The brief is further developed in line with the general approach to layout, design, construction and services. A cost plan is established. The client is asked for his authoritative approval on how to proceed.

0.1 Analyze the Client’s requirements; prepare outline proposals.

0.2 Provide information to discuss proposals with and incorporate input of other consultants

0.3 Provide information to other consultants for the preparation of an approximation of construction costs

0.3 A Provide an approximation of construction costs

04 Submit outline proposals and approximation of construction cost for the Client’s approval

05 Propose a procedure for cost planning and control

06 Provide information to others for cost planning and control throughout the project

06 A Operate the procedure for cost planning and control throughout the project

07 Prepare and keep updated a Client’s running expenditure plan for the project

08 Carry out negotiations with tenants or others identified by the Client

Here the architect will relate the client’s requirements to the information given in stage B. expert advice from structural and building engineers will be sort. The relevant parties will then discuss the various different options given to us This will help us to determine what type of construction would be best for the site on plot j. now the outline scheme drawings can be prepared.

Cost limits of the project will be taken into account by the quantity surveyor, where the architect will help him. Within the cost limits the quantity surveyor and architect will discuss the building standard, which can be provided with these limits.

Indication as to when the building work will start on site and when it is to finish, an outline pre-contract programme will be prepared.

D Scheme Design

The brief is completed and architectural, engineering and services designs are integrated. The cost plan, overall programme and outline specification are developed and planning and other approvals applied for. A report is submitted to the client for his approval.

01 Develop scheme design from approved outline proposals

02 Provide the information to discuss proposals with and incorporate input of other consultant into scheme design

03 Provide information to other consultants for their preparation of cost estimate

03 A Prepare cost estimate

04 Prepare preliminary timetable for construction

05 Consult with planning authorities

06 Consult with Building Control Authorities

07 Consult with Fire Authorities

08 Consult with environmental authorities

09 Consult with licensing authorities

10 Consult with statutory undertakers

11 Prepare application for full planning approval

12 Submit scheme design showing spatial arrangements, materials and appearance together with cost estimate for the Client’s approval

13 Consult with tenants and others identified

14 Conduct exceptional negotiations with planning authorities

15 Submit an application for full planning approval

16 Prepare multiple applications for full planning approval

17 Submit multiple planning applications

18 Make revisions to scheme design to deal with requirements of planning authorities

19 Revise planning application

20 Resubmit planning application

21 Carry out special construction research for the project including design of prototypes. Mock ups or models.

22 Monitor testing of prototypes, mock-ups or models.

Now the Design Team will prepare a scheme to show parts of the building as to where they go and what they look like. It will also give a brief description of the materials being used. To do this the architect will have to complete his studies to get the ‘user requirements.’ Specialist firms and the design team will decide materials, finishes and services etc.

We will now sort full planning permission and building regulations approval and all effected parties, which will be involved in the site such as highways and drainage, will be notified of our intentions by the local authority.

The architect will now require a cost plan, this will be drafted up with the aid of the quantity surveyor. This will consist of an approximate cost of the project and a separate cost for building 3 and 4. this will then be submitted to the client for his approval. The client will be notified that the scheme cannot change once he has given his approval, and if he does so then this will result in the payment of additional fees.

E Detailed Design

The team designs, co-ordinates and specifies all parts and components, completes cost checks and obtains client’s approval of significant details and costs. Specialist tenders may be sought.

01 Develop the detailed design from the approved scheme design

02 Provide information to discuss proposals with and incorporate input of other consultants into detailed design

03 Provide information to other consultants for their revision of cost estimate

03 A Revise cost estimate

04 Prepare Building Notice under building Act and/or Regulations

05 Agree form of building contract and explain the Client’s obligations thereunder

06 Obtain Client’s approval of the type of construction, quality of materials and standard of workmanship

07 Apply for approvals under Building Acts and /or Regulations and other statutory requirements

08 Negotiate if necessary over Building Acts and/or regulations and other statutory requirements

09 Conduct exceptional negotiations for approval by statutory authorities

10 Negotiate waivers or relaxation’s under Building Acts and/or regulations and other statutory requirements.

In this stage of the process the final drawing will be completed and the specification of the building will be completed. The specification will be done by the architectural technologist. The plan of work will be put together. The bill of quantities will be put together by the quantity surveyor from the specification. Information will be provided for the revision of cost estimation also the authorities will be consulted on developed design proposals. The client will approve to the type of construction, the quality of the materials, the standard of workmanship and revised cost estimation. The client will be advised on the consequences of any subsequent changes on cost and programming.

F Production Information

The team prepares working drawings, schedules and specifications and agrees with the client how the work is to be carried out. Specialist tenders may be sought.

01 Prepare production drawings

02 Prepare specifications

03 Provide information to discuss proposals with and incorporate input of other consultants into production information

04 Co-ordinate production information

05 Prepare other production information

06 Submit plans for proposed building works for approval of landlords, funders, freeholders, tenants or others as requested by the Client.

The Architectural Technologist will put together a specification so a tender document can be produced. The production information will be prepared for tender purposes; also schedules will be prepared for rates and quantities. The architectural technologist must prepare and submit under building acts and regulation for the statutory requirements. Building notice must be prepared and given however this is not so in Scotland.

Roles of the Design Team (Task 1B)

Everyone on the design team has specific roles that need to be carried out with care. If a role is not carried out to a specific degree of quality then the offender may be liable for any accidents or damages as this is classed as negligence.

The client;

These are the client’s duties however the client may decide to appoint a clients agent. Then the client’s agent would carry these tasks out however it is still the ‘client’ responsibility to appoint a ‘competent’ agent to do the job.

• Appoint a planning supervisor;

• Provide information on health and safety to the planning supervisor;

• Appoint a principal contractor;

• Ensure those you appoint are competent and adequately resourced to carry out their health and safety responsibilities;

• Ensure that a suitable health and safety plan has been prepared by the principal contractor before construction work starts; and

• Ensure the health and safety file given to you at the end of the project is kept available for use.

If you arrange for someone to prepare a design or for a contractor to carry out construction work on the project, you also have duties to ensure they are competent and are adequately resourced to carry out their health and safety responsibilities.

The Architect;

The architect is responsible for defining and maintaining the structure of the solution, and ensuring that it will meet the requirements. An architect must also help the team to work together in an agile fashion, to jointly own the solution, and to interface well with other parts of the organization.

There are five main parts to this:

Understanding the requirements – identifying the stakeholders, helping to analyze the requirements and extracting those of architectural significance
Formulating the design – creating a solution structure which will meet the various requirements, balancing the goals and constraints on the solution,
Communicating the architecture – making sure that everyone understands the architecture. Different people have different viewpoints, so the architect has to present various views of the system appropriate to different audiences,
Supporting the developers – making sure that the developers are able to realize the architecture, by a combination of mentoring and direct involvement,
Verifying the implementation – ensuring the delivered system is consistent with the agreed architecture, and will meet the requirements.
The Architectural Technologist;

Architectural technologists work in building design and construction management teams, working especially closely with architects. They form the link between the architect’s concept and the completed construction, bridging the gap between the idea of an attractive functional building and the reality of that building performing successfully. They ensure that the right materials are used and that the building meets building regulations and other legal requirements.

They also monitor quality assurance, cost and the meeting of deadlines throughout the lifetime of a construction project. Fully qualified members of the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (CIAT) can take total responsibility for the management of a project.

The balance of different activities varies according to the kind of projects and the size of the organisation. However, typical work activities usually include:

• Meeting with clients and other involved professionals at an early stage to agree the project brief;

• Understanding how the design aspects of a construction project influence and relate to performance and functional issues, so that practical questions can be addressed at an early stage;

• Evaluating environmental, legal and regulatory issues and advising on these;

• Contributing to planning applications and other regulatory application procedures;

• Assessing what surveys (e.g. land surveys) are required before work can commence and ensuring such surveys is undertaken and their results fed into the project;

• Developing project briefs and working on these as the project progresses;

• Preparing and presenting design proposals using computer-aided design (CAD) and traditional drawing methods;

• Leading the detailed design process and co-ordinating design information;

• Advising clients on procuring the best and most appropriate contracts for the work they are undertaking;

• Liaising with appropriate authorities (e.g. planning enquiries and building inspectors) when producing documentation for statutory approval;

• Producing, analysing and advising on detailed specifications for suitable materials or processes to be used in construction;

• Carrying out design-stage risk assessments;

• Administering contracts and project certifications;

• Obtaining feedback on work in progress and finished results from clients;

• Appraising the performance of buildings which are in use and producing maintenance management information;

• Evaluating and advising on refurbishment, re-use, recycling and deconstruction;

• Managing the work of trainee technologists;

• Contributing to the overall running of business.

Landscape Architect;

Landscape architects/designers are essentially designers of outdoor spaces, of any land open to the sky, including land lying around and between buildings. They work to ensure that any changes made to the natural environment are appropriate and sensitive, as well as innovative and aesthetically pleasing.

Projects can be both urban and rural and range from designing the layout of parks, gardens and housing estates to improving land affected by mineral extraction or motorway construction. The work involves collaborating closely with landscape contractors, as well as other professionals, especially architects, and those working in surveying and engineering functions.

Structural Engineer;

A structural engineer designs structures that will withstand the pressures they have to endure. These may be buildings, aerials, bridges, oil rigs, aircraft; anything from a playground climbing frames to the tallest building. They develop initial designs, using mathematics to calculate the stress that could arise at each point in the structure, and simulate and model possible situations, such as high winds and earth movements. When construction has commenced, they are often involved in inspecting the work and advising contractors.

These engineers often work in partnership with architects. They also examine buildings, bridges and other structures to discover whether or not they are structurally sound.

Services Engineer;

A building services engineer is responsible for ensuring the cost-effective and environmentally sound design and maintenance of energy-using elements in buildings. They have an important role in developing and maintaining buildings, and their components, to make the most effective use of natural resources and protect public safety. This includes all equipment and materials involved with heating, lighting, ventilation, air-conditioning, electrical distribution, water supply, fire protection, safety systems, lifts and escalators, and even acoustics.

Whilst the role increasingly demands a multidisciplinary approach, building services engineers tend to specialise in one of the following areas:

Electrical engineering;
Mechanical engineering;
Public health.

Stages of Project Planning Process (Task 1C)

Planning Team

The project team can be very important and it is essential to show that the team have the relevant experience, skills or training. It is often necessary to employ people who have been associated with similar projects previously. The experts may be expensive or may have limited availability, in which case the expert can be appointed as an advisor and may not have a great input. It is important not to mislead the Client by indicating a greater input than there will be in reality.

G Tender Documentation

This is the first part of the planning stage. Here, the contract documents have been signed and any matters that have not been signed will be discussed between the architect, the client and the contractor. Both the client and the architect have rights and responsibilities where they must understand their own roles in the project. The client will be the employer and the architect will be the employer’s agent. Really this meeting will sort out the roles and responsibilities of everyone and a checklist may be used so that nothing is forgotten.

H Tender Action

Main contract tenders are obtained by negotiation or competitive tendering procedures. The client is asked to agree that suitable tenders are accepted.

01 Advise on and obtain the Client’s approval to list of tenderers for the building contract

02 Invite tenders

03 Appraise and report on tenders with other consultants

03 A Appraise and report on tenders

04 Assist other consultants in negotiating with tenderer

04 A Negotiate with a tenderer

05 Assist other consultants in negotiating a price with a contractor

05 A Negotiate a price with a contractor

06 Select a contractor by other means

07 Revise production information to adjust tender sum

08 Arrange for other contracts to be let prior to the main building contract

The contractor will be given a list of firms that the architect is considering using including the ones named at the tender stage. The architect must ensure that the contractor has no objections with any of the firms involved.

The subcontractors and suppliers will receive letters telling them that they have been successful or unsuccessful. The contractor will then be informed to accept the sub-contractors quotation. When the architect has the meeting with the contractor he must make sure the agreement has been completed the clauses have been deleted from the conditions as appropriate. The signing of the contract includes many operations such as checking the contractors insurance and sending the contractor a copy of the contract.

J Project Planning

Contract documents are processed. The contractor receives information needed to plan the work. The site inspector is briefed and all roles are defined. The site is made available for work to start.

01 Advise Client on the appointment of the contractor and on the responsibilities of the parties and the Architect under the Building Contract

02 Prepare the building contract and arrange for it to be signed

03 Provide production information as required by the building contract

04 Provide services in connection with demolition

05 Arrange for other contractors to be let subsequent to the commencement of the building contract

Production information must be ready for the project meeting. This is the meeting that takes place before any work starts on site. The project information will be made up of two copies of the drawings, schedules and specifications. Copies of statutory approvals and the architect and contractor programme will be needed.

K Operations on Site

Contract is administered and contractual obligations fulfilled with progress and quality control monitored. Financial control, with regular reports to the client, is maintained.

01 Administer the terms of the building contract

02 Conduct meetings with the contractor to review progress

03 Provide information to other consultants for the preparation of financial reports of the Client

03 A Prepare financial reports for the Client

04 Generally inspect materials delivered to site

05 As appropriate instruct the taking of samples, carrying out of tests of materials, components, techniques and workmanship and examine the conduct and results of such tests whether on or off site

06 As appropriate instruct the opening up of completed works to determine that it is generally in accordance with the Contract Documents

07 As appropriate visit the sites of the extraction and fabrication and assembly of materials and components to inspect such materials and workmanship before delivery to site.

08 At intervals appropriate to the stage of construction visit the Works to inspect the progress and quality of the Works and to determine that they are being executed generally in accordance with the Contract Documents

09 Direct and control the activities of site staff

10 Administer the terms of other contracts

11 Monitor the progress of the Works against the contractor’s programme and report to the Client

12 Prepare valuations of the work carried out and completed

During the early stages of project planning, it is important to identify the resources and schedule for development of the Maintenance & Operations Plan. The roles and responsibilities of the various resources must be determined and an overall approach developed.

Most project processes will have maintenance and operations equivalents, including change management, governance processes, testing and communications. Employers need to review Project planning elements to determine those needed on an ongoing basis and include them in the Maintenance & Operations Plan.

A risk assessment will have to be carried out for each operation that will occur on site. This determines what PPE the person will have to wear and how big the risk is of carrying out this operation. A check list will have to be made so that all equipment can be checked over once and a while. For example, the oil level in generators must be checked weekly so that they are able to run smoothly on site. A checklist can be ticked off once the generator has been checked and is in good working order.

L Completion

Project is handed over for occupation. Defects are corrected, claims are resolved and final account is agreed. Final Certificate is issued.

01 Provide drawings showing the building and main lines of drainage

02 Arrange the drawings of building services installations to be provided

03 Generally give advice on maintenance

04 Prepare drawings for convincing purposes

05 Compile maintenance and operational manuals

06 Incorporate information prepared by others in the maintenance manuals

07 Arrange maintenance contracts

This is the stage where the building is handed over to the client so that it can be occupied, rented etc. All remediation is done to any thing that’s is wrong within the project. The final account should be signed by the client to say that he is happy and that there is nothing else to be done. The architect also needs to sign it. It also means that everything has been done according to the contract.

M Feedback

The performance of the building and the design and construction teams are analysed and recorded for future reference.

This stage also mentions that after the building has been finished, the architect and the contractor are responsible for any failures that may occur to the building in the near future. However, it is obvious that if the failure occurs in the far future then this not their responsibility.

At the end of this stage there are many questions asked. These include things such as,

Did the contractor work well?
Does the building function properly?
Did the design process work smoothly?
What does the client think of the building?

Factors that effect planning decisions (Task 1C)

There are many things that need to be taken into consideration when making planning decisions, all projects produce different factors to be considered such as the following;

Availability of materials
Availability of workers (Hiring sub contactors)
The Planning (conservation areas & listed building areas) act 1990
The Town and Country Planning Act 1990
Restrictions on the land/local area
Usage of development
Surrounding infrastructure
Existing Access
Who will be using the facility e.g. old people or disabled
Demands of the client
Building regulations
How to overcome these factors

1) Analysis of the Problem Breakdown the problem into simple components which may be easily managed. Create a flowchart in the form of a decision tree. Each stage of a project and all possible options are shown so as to produce a series of outcomes.

2) Assessment of Outcomes. This is based on utility (the relative desirability) which is assessed for each possible outcome. The criteria are listed and their relative importance is evaluated. Each outcome is assessed against each criteria and then is evaluated by summing its utility score against each criteria weighted by the relative importance of each criteria.

3) Assessment of Probabilities. The alternative outcomes of each decision stage are allocated probability of the likelihood of their occurrence. These are subjective assessments, but experience is used to lend some objectivity.

4) Determining Optimum Path The optimum path through the decision tree is determined by working backwards from the final outcome and calculating the expected (weighted average) utility of each event node. Where several activities enter an activity event node, the path with the highest utility is elected and the others are eliminated. The best path through the decision tree is found.

5) Sensitivity Analysis Important elements of the decision tree should be assessed by applying a range of values to determine the effect.

Decisions to be made for this project (Plot J)


The budget for the project and the program for implementation will be very difficult to ascertain at this early stage, but if some indication can be given and an approximate cash flow, it could be very useful to the Client and would indicate our understanding of the project.

In order to ensure my project comes in on budget I will be employing a skilled and experienced quantity surveyor. This is because there is a big difference between estimated costs and true costs, which would be calculated to a degree of accuracy by the quantity surveyor. Budgets for the professional fees and program’s for the professional services would also be useful.

Green Field site

As our site is situated on a “green field site” then there will be certain implications which may hamper the development.

Once land has been converted to development, it is unlikely to ever be converted back to Greenfield use
Destruction of the natural habitat of some animal and plant species
Loss of agricultural land results in loss of production and loss of employment
Reduction of or complete loss of amenity or recreation value
Negative effect upon transport and energy use
Loss of the gr

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