A facility study is almost always the initial phase of a design project when existing buildings are part of the equation – when it is necessary to determine the integrity of an existing building’s structural and mechanical systems, and to evaluate their long‐ term utility and continued programmatic benefit. Facility studies vary widely from simple evaluations on a single issue for a client, which can be done quickly and inexpensively, to very complex and comprehensive plans taking into account many project variables and requiring months of effort.
A feasibility study might be undertaken when some aspects of a potential project (budget, location, size) are unknown at a project's conception. SDS Architects helps individuals, businesses, and organizations research the feasibility of new construction, remodeling, additions, site evaluation, and long range facility planning. The time and cost committed to feasibility studies can also vary widely between projects.
Clients from schools to private businesses are often choosing between multiple sites for construction of a new project or how to situate a building or expansion on an existing site. Sometimes developers may need to evaluate sites for the maximum amount of buildable space or parking. Some engineers are able to run the math in such situations, but SDS brings additional value to the process by considering more than just “placing rectangles in a box”. Whatever your needs are, SDS Architects has the experience you need to offer suggestions to make the most of your site opportunities.
School Districts, Colleges, Universities, Municipal and Government facilities, as well as private businesses often know they need to expand or upgrade their facilities, but have difficulty identifying the specific needs and the best use of available monies. This type of design analysis is best done by expert staff, such as SDS Architects. Schools often pursue a “school study” to help determine their facility needs and need assistance explaining those needs to the community. Factors such as the usefulness of existing facilities, environmental requirements, population growth, and other specific data is taken into account to allow plans to be appropriate for their use as well as affordable.
When a new construction project is needed, calling an architect first can definitely help clients develop a more responsible preliminary budget for a project. The cost of a building is determined more by its size and the materials from which it is made than it is by the company building it. Architects are able to help Owners develop actionable, useful initial information upon which a reliable budget can be developed. In addition, a good project budget will take more than simple construction costs into account, and can include operating and maintenance cost estimates as well as opportunities for savings in project timing and planning. Architects are very experienced in the construction process and can serve as an independent party watching out for the best interests of their clients ‐‐ including obtaining the best possible value for the budget expended.
School Districts, Post‐secondary educational institutions, governmental bodies and large corporations have a need for long‐range planning for facilities. This includes identifying current weaknesses, existing opportunities, future needs, and more. Our goal is to develop a useful tool that is used by administration and management to plan and implement solutions, rather than sit idly on a shelf between updates.
Typically when a building owner needs to expand, they cannot suspend operations during construction. Schools must continue to teach students, businesses must continue to serve customers, police, fire and emergency departments must continue to protect the public, and hospitals must still care for patients. Construction phasing can also be important for budget planning and to take advantage of seasonal opportunities. No matter what the project goal is, SDS Architects’ expert team will create a phasing plan to reduce aggravation and headaches, and to help you plan for a smooth expansion project.
When a developer has a piece of undeveloped land the typical need is to obtain the maximum utilization of the property. Developers want to be able to show potential buyers what the development could look like, how many cars can access the business, and how the streets and monuments will look in the development. SDS Architects works with developers to create very attractive renderings and site plans that are both accurate and engaging for prospective buyers or tenants. For a small investment, the images developed can have a big impact on the marketing of your real estate development whether it’s a building for lease or land for sale.
Most construction service buyers don’t have significant experience creating Requests for Proposal, primarily because the design and construction process is foreign to them. Too often what ends up happening is that well‐meaning individuals borrow RFP or RFQ documents from other school districts, businesses, or organizations and utilize essentially the same form even when their project is substantially different. For a very small fee, SDS Architects will help your business or organization develop documents that reflect your proposed project accurately and succinctly; including the pertinent information required for potential providers to propose responsibly while eliminating redundancies and vague language that only confuse everyone involved. When you consider the importance of the project you are about to undertake, you are likely to decide it is worth it to have professional help in crafting a document related specifically to your project.
When school districts or municipalities have a project which will require public approval for funding it can be difficult because many project partners haven’t undertaken a public relations effort of that magnitude before. Accurate and thorough information and timely distribution of the information are some of the keys to success. SDS Architects has worked with numerous groups on passing successful referenda and has an impressive success rate.
It's unusual that a new construction project doesn't require financing of some kind. Inevitably, the lender or funding source will need to be presented with information and a project plan. The more thorough and well planned the presentation (and project) are, the better the chances of success. This also goes for developers presenting a site to a potential end user. The better presentation generally wins. SDS Architects is known for their thorough and professional presentations whether they be to community members, banks, or developers.
Some large organizations find that keeping an architect on call for ongoing projects, inspections, and evaluations is worth the investment. This type of service can include everything from design and management of small projects, restoration or historic preservation issues, overall facility oversight, as well as planning for (and management of) large expansions or new construction.