The architectural design process consists of the six steps outlined below. The process starts out highly interactive and becomes more detailed and specific as the project moves toward completion. This page will be updated with phase completion percentages as the La Crosse Center moves though the architectural process.
The Discovery Phase is an interactive process that involves the client working closely with key members of the Design Team to uncover needs, goals and objectives that will inform the vision for the project.
The Concept Phase is often integrated into Schematic Design, but with larger more complex projects, this phase stands alone. During this phase, design ideas are tested at a high level.
Schematic Design is a development of the conceptual design scheme that seeks to further define the general scope and design direction of the project including scale and relationships between building components. At the end of the schematic design phase the architect will present some rough sketches to the owner for approval.
Using information gleaned from the Discovery phase and the approved Schematic Design phase, Design Development is when special features and visual concepts are refined. Through design drawings, renderings, colors and materials, floor plans, and elevations, a design will be developed reflective of the client’s image, goals and targeted budget.
Once the client and design team are satisfied with the documents produced during Design Development, the design team moves forward and produces drawings with greater detail. These drawings include specifications for construction details and materials. The approved Construction Documents are sent to contractors for pricing/bidding. This phase results in the contractors’ final estimate of project costs.
The core responsibility during this phase is to help the contractor to build the project as specified in the Construction Documents as approved by the owner. Questions may arise on site that require the architect to develop architectural sketches: drawings issued after construction documents have been released that offer additional clarification to finish the project properly. Different situations may require the architect to issue a Change Order to complete the project.