Did You Know…

We had a client recently that was of the opinion that “I own this building and I should be able to do what I want to it”. He knew there was a building department which issued building permits, but he did not realize how far reaching these agencies went.

There is much talk these days about the swamps in Washington, but the forest of building regulations at the State and Local level has become increasingly dense and difficult to find your way through when constructing a new building, adding an addition or renovating an existing facility. Getting a building permit is not as easy as it once was.

Did you know…

  • that there are fifteen different State of Indiana commercial construction codes?
  • that there are multiple different local departments that may need to review and approve your project?
  • that most commercial projects are required to have detailed construction drawings certified by a design professional submitted to the state agency for review. Before a local building permit can be issued the state must agree that you have met their regulations and then issue a Construction Design Release (CDR)?
  • that if your project involves any new exterior building and/or site improvements, it must be submitted to the local planning department to be reviewed. Before a local building permit can be issued the local planning department must agree that you have met their regulations and then issue an Improvement Location Permit (ILP).
  • that your project must have periodic inspections by the building department during construction?
  • that each local department must be individually satisfied before the building department can do their final inspections and issue a Certificate of Occupancy (COO)?
  • that you cannot legally occupy the building or renovated area until the Certificate of Occupancy (COO) is issued?

Much like a traveler going into an unfamiliar forest, you as a building Owner, really need the help of an experienced guide so you can make your way through safely.

PDMi can see that all these things are done. Give us a call if we can be of any help.

Go Cubs Go

I spent a day this week with my wife, my son, and my grandson at Wrigley Field. It was a great day for a baseball game, time with the family, and having fun. I am a Cubs fan and have been for years. My son became a fan at an early age and now I am excited to see my grandson become a fan too. Certainly last October was great for us Cubs fans; it was a long time coming. I am not so naïve to think that everyone is a Cubs fan, but I do believe that everyone has a favorite team that they love to wear the team colors of and root for. Why? Because watching a team get better week after week and then end as a winner is fun!

When my team has had success it comes from many of the same reasons a building project has success. These include:

Commitment from Upper Management. For any project to be successful Upper Management must understand why the project must be done, what items are to be valued and how the project will be measured during construction and at completion.

Skilled, Experienced & Prepared Team Players. A project team includes the Owner, the Engineer/Architect and the Contractor. Just like on a sports team each member needs to understand their role, do not do more (or less) than that role requires and lean upon their experiences to make the whole stronger than the individual parts.

Execution of the Game Plan. You can have the most skilled, experienced & prepared team players backed by the most focused, united & supportive management, but if the plan is not executed it just does not matter. Creating a great plan and executing that plan will always bring success.

We at PDMi want to see your next project become a success. Contact us and we can help you create the game plan and be certain that it gets executed.

Road Trip

My wife and I just got home from a Road Trip with our two teenage granddaughters. We had a great time sightseeing as we made the loop from Charleston, SC to Savannah, GA to Asheville, NC. This trip had been in the planning for months and now that we are home we have the great memories of time spent together.

The things we did to make our Road Trip a success are the same things you can do to make your next building project a success.

  • Long before we started the road trip we put together a plan. We purchased our plane tickets, reserved our rental car and made reservations at the Hotels we wanted to stay in. As you start your project, know where you want to go and how you are going to get there. In other words, establish the big picture for your project.
  • We used the “Last Responsible Moment” decision making process. There were many things we did not pre-plan before we took off on our road trip. Things like what restaurant we would eat at, when we would visit an attraction and frankly when we would get up each morning. There are many decisions that do not need to be made when you start your project. The goal is to be smart enough to know what those decisions are and when the last responsible moment of making that decision will be.
  • Stay flexible. When you are on a road trip there are always unexpected things that are sure to happen. I have yet to see a building project that has not had some unforeseen thing happen. When those things happen, stay focused on the facts and act from your head not from your heart.

Your next building project can be a success just like our road trip was if you follow these simple steps. Contact us and we can help you on your next “Road Trip”.

Stating the Obvious

I worked with a guy once that would always say “You did a good job of stating the obvious”. Of course we would always agree that we were rather insightful.

What seems obvious to me is that people are looking for that one convenient spot where they can go to get their needs met. This became evident when we got a call from a local chef that was looking to open a new restaurant. She knew where she wanted to be located, she knew what menu she would be serving, and she knew what customers she would be targeting. These were all obvious to her, but the things that were not obvious were the things she did not know. Things like, would the space she was looking to lease meet her needs? What are the regulatory code requirements for her to open? What is the construction cost of the tenant improvements? These are all things she needed for her business plan. After asking some questions and thinking through the answers we were able to help her.

When you are looking for that “one spot” of help on your next project, find someone which can…

  • Assess your facility needs and match them to a facility.
  • Help you through the regulatory mine field.
  • Design a buildable project that reflects you and your needs.
  • Implement your project, on time and on budget.

PDMi can do all these things. There I go again stating the obvious. We hope it is obvious to you. Give us a call if we can be of any help.

How Do You Draw a Phone?

The other evening my two grandchildren were at our house. As we often do when they have a sleepover at Grammy and Grampy’s, we do crafts on the kitchen table. My three year old said “Grampy, how do you draw a phone”?  As my mind started to think about how to draw a base unit with the key pad, curly cord and a handset, her six year old brother says “I will show you”. I am thinking Jack is very talented if he can draw the phone I had envisioned in my mind. He grabbed the piece of paper, drew a rectangle, another rectangle inside the first, a circle at the bottom and a small line on the top. Annabelle looked at it and said “Ok, but where are the apps?”  My next thought was “Wow” how things have changed from generation to generation. Technology has given us the opportunity to perceive things differently today than we would have been able to just a few short years ago.

The idea of technology giving us tools to help communicate ideas or solutions more effectively has never been more prevalent in Engineering & Architecture than in the use of 3-D modeling. In the old days we would use 2-D blue prints to indicate solutions to our client’s requirements. Sometimes the client was able to visualize those solutions from the 2-D blueprints and sometimes not so much. Today with the aid of 3D software we are able to give the client a better visual perspective of the solutions to meet the needs of his project.  3-D modeling of his project allows our clients the opportunity to See It- Then Decide. So what can they see?

  • How people and space interact within the facility.
  • How the scale (feel) and materials (look) of the facility interact with people.
  • Where conflicts occur between building systems or facility flow.

Contact us about how we can use our 3-D modeling tools to deliver a project you can see before you decide to build.