Forma, Inc is a full service architectural firm assisting clients during their projects from the initial design ideas to completion of the physical structure. At Forma, Inc., we make sure that each and every client receives personal attention from each member of our staff and fully participates in the process of project development.
The project development is typically made of the following four steps:
Step 1: Schematic Design or Initial Design
During the first meeting with the client we set up the outline of the project program and listen to the client’s goals and ideas that he hopes to see in the future building. The project is later defined in the client’s contract that is signed by both parties.
The client is informed about the full participation of Paul Florczak, the Forma, Inc. president and licensed architect, which is necessary in making sure the project is code compliant, feasible with the client’s budget and allows familiarity of the project during the process of obtaining the permit.
The Schematic Design also includes developing of the initial sketches of the project design. Forma, Inc. often provides its clients with several schemes to offer a better decision making process.
Our knowledge of multiple architectural computer software allows generating 3-dimensional images, or ‘walk through’, that allows client to visualize the future building.
As we proceed with the final steps of the design process, we verify the project is compliant with governing municipal codes. Our team often contacts the municipalitywhere the project is located to establish a relationship and make for an easier permit review process.
We are also able, with the assistance of our consultants, to analyze the future structural and mechanical systems of the building and choose the one that best fits client’s needs.
Forma, Inc. often helps its clients in finding the General Contractors (GC) for the project. The presence of the GC during the initial design process often minimizes changes during construction and allows us to make drawings reflecting the details to be preferred by the GC.
Step 2: Design Development-Enhancing Working Sketches into general layout Computer Drawings.
The Design Development takes the Schematic Design drawings from Step 1 and refines them turning them into defined computer construction documents.
At this stage we allow the client to start making decisions on material selection and color schemes, while Forma, Inc. starts generating building floor plans, elevations, and general sections. The initial material and color selections are placed on the drawings so the builder (if available) can start generating the initial construction costs. Forma, Inc. wants to make sure the project is within the client’s budget.
Forma, Inc. can help the client to make decision regarding material selections. We can provide suggestions as to which materials best fit the project based on our experience. We can also generate free hand sketches or computer generated renderings to help visualize the future design.
As the drawings are generated, our consultants are looking closer at the structural and mechanical systems and letting our staff architects know how much clearance to allocate for multiple building components.
Step 3: Construction Development-Developing Full Set of Drawings Issued for Permit.
The following is a description of Construction Documents (drawings) necessary to obtain a building permit.
This is the final stage in drawing development where the Construction Documents(drawings) are developed. The Construction Documents include a full set of drawings indicating general scope of project in terms of architectural, structural, mechanical, electrical and plumbing. The drawings also include general intension, specific details and material schedules. The final set also consists of coordination of multiple components of building systems within allowed building perimeter.
Step 4: Permitting and Construction Administration – Obtaining Permit and Coordination at the Construction Site
After drawing completion the Construction Documents are submitted to the building department of the municipality where the project is located. Paul Florczak, the firm’s licensed architect, coordinates the permitting process and meets with drawing reviewers to obtain the building permit.
With the help of our consultants and our knowledge of the building codes, we are able to obtain building permits in an expedited time period. It is our experience thatsmall projects and renovations are permitted on the same day.
Forma, Inc. issues a separate set of drawings for the client allowing obtaining estimates for the construction cost. Forma, Inc. can recommend several General Contractors allowing the client to work with a General Contractor (builder) who has reputation to create excellent work.
As the builder is selected and the construction starts, Forma Inc. can assist our clients in monitoring the work at the construction site. Our work typically involves periodic visits at the site to see if the work progresses per intended design and the Construction Documents.
Forma Inc. visits the site during:
- Demolition. To verify that existing conditions match what has been anticipated in the drawings.
- Foundation wall construction and slab. To verify proper waterproofing methods and connections to main services (like water, sewer, storm water, gas and electric).
- Rough carpentry work. Forma, Inc. verifies if correct structural members and water flashing installations are used.
- We confirm with General Contractor if all inspections with governing municipalities have been passed and signed off before the finishing work starts and walls are covered.
- We can recommend building a material mock-up to confirm if selected materials are truly the finishes that the client visualized during the design stage.
- Forma, Inc. makes a round of final quality inspections through the new construction to create a ‘punch list’ of items not built per high construction standards. The list is passed to general contractor to be corrected before the final payment is made.
The above listed steps of project development process are just a short summary of what it is involved in making your future project a reality. It is a complex process. However, with our experience and dedication we will make every effort to make it a memorable and fun experience.
Go ahead, make your dreams a reality.