Architects are professionals and experts in their chosen field. And it would be no stretch of the truth to say that no building or structure would be built without architects, certainly no commercial or public structures, for certain.
This is because a building of any type must be first designed, planned, and rendered as blueprints and plan drawings before any construction can begin. Yet, architects do not merely create the design and blueprints of a building.
As a licensed professional they are also responsible for public safety, which entails both the soundness of the structure’s design but meeting the local, state, and other code requirements.
In addition, many architects have a primary role in overseeing projects. However, in today’s “work from home” world and the availability, power, and convenience of the Internet, architects can design and plan buildings and other structures from halfway around the world, never setting foot on the actual building site.
Unfortunately, this also means that there can be gaps in the knowledge needed regarding codes and other physical and localized issues.
And this is where a construction consultant can work with an architect to overcome those gaps.
Construction Consulting for Architects
A construction consultant is a professional who can be called upon to work with an independent architect or multidisciplinary design firm for a wide variety of needs.
In addition to advising contractors, business managers, and building owners prior to building or remodeling, the consultant can assist the architect to develop innovative building design solutions. Every building is unique, and every construction project has its distinct challenges and limitations.
What works on a computer monitor or a preliminary drawing may not be feasible at the physical building site for any number of reasons. That’s often where a consultant can be beneficial.
In an analogous way, the teams who regularly remodel existing homes for the reality shows on TV home networks inevitably run into unanticipated issues that either involve a change in plans and/or a consultation with another expert to ensure that the solutions will be “up to code” or compliant with the local building codes.
A construction consultant can be called upon to provide similar knowledge, expertise, and advice but on a much larger scale.
Common Functions Carried Out by Construction Consultants for Architect Clients
One of the most common duties performed by a consultant working for an architect is to provide solutions regarding building design.
For example, a manager of a large corporate office project decides that a more sustainable design needs to be incorporated into the final structure. The construction consultant, if he or she is expert in sustainable building practices, might advise the architect on how to most effectively improve the design of the facility.
In addition, the consultant might also do additional research on the specific needs and regulations regarding that type of building and advise the architect on developing a plan that is compliant, feasible, and cost-effective for the building manager’s budget.
Other common functions of a construction consultant who works with an architect include:
- Providing guidance during initial construction planning stages
- Offering creative building solutions
- Researching zoning, variance, and permit requirements
- Coordinating with architect, owner, and builder
- Ensuring that the architect’s plans are ready for submission to the building department
- Determining that the plans are within the client’s budget
Many times, construction consultants will oversee architectural projects. In this role, they may be responsible for ensuring that the construction work is executed in a legal, compliant, and efficient manner.
It is also not uncommon for a consultant to act as a construction project manager in conjunction with the lead architect.
In this role, a consultant can be responsible for establishing the budget and making revisions, as needed. The consultant may be called upon to perform risk management functions. For example, calculating the probability that certain events might occur and taking proper steps to minimize any potentially negative impacts of those events.
In addition, beyond the role of assisting the architect, construction consultants can assist managers in preparing and managing contracts for construction work and monitoring the work being done to ensure that it follows contractual terms.
Construction, Consulting, and Architects – Crystal Construction Consulting
The beauty of an interconnected world is that architects can avail themselves of the services of a construction consultant without ever leaving their studio. And, conversely, a consultant can – in most every case – render expert consulting services without traveling to a building site.
Having access to an experienced and knowledgeable professional can make the process much easier for an architect, as well as for contractors and building owners who will benefit by making sure that designs and plans are compliant to all acceptable building practices.
So, whether you’re an architect with questions regarding building code, a contracting firm about to build your first commercial building, or a business owner who wants to create a more green and sustainable facility, construction consulting can benefit you.
An experienced construction consultant can provide guidance and direction for any aspect of a project, whether it involves new construction, retrofitting for energy efficiency, or simply adding or upgrading energy saving components.
And it doesn’t have to be a large building project! You could be a homeowner planning to build your own home or an addition. A construction consultant can be a valuable asset and investment.
As an experienced construction consultant, we can guide you in all the phases of your project and answer your questions. To learn more, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (707) 865-5157.