Project Planning and Design can range from simply having a well thought out scope to preparation of complete plan sets.
Often times, there are relatively straight-forward, typical construction projects that need to be addressed. The tear-off and replacement of a shingle roof is one example. There, the design is limited mainly to the selection of materials and verifying the conditions and constraints of the project site. In other situations, it requires the performance of structural calculations and design drawings.
A lot of repair and restoration work can be conducted using standardized (often referred to as "boiler plate") specifications. In that situation, design is limited and the value of the consultant is proven in the level of detail put into the specifications for bidding. Unfortunately, many other firms believe that the boiler plate specifications are enough and the contractor is left to determine the extent of work. This ends up lowering the quality of the final product and puts the client at greater risk of project overruns. See our Specifications and Bidding section for more information.
Other projects, like capital improvements, alterations, and structural strengthening, for example, require site specific drawings and engineered details. The key is to provide as much detail as possible to improve the bidding process and to ensure that the contractor is not making design decisions in the field. Excellent Project Design ensures that the bidders can bid with certainty (reducing costs) and ambiguity will be avoided in the field (improving the final product for the client).