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Detail Design

Building Control Officer’s (BCO) are concerned with how the proposals will be constructed and whether that construction complies with various safety and sustainability legislation.  The architect will work up the planning application drawings to include information on construction, mechanical, electrical and drainage proposals.  This supplementsvarious calculations for insulation values prepared by Z-Space and structural proposals.  The latter may require the engagement of a Structural Engineer but this depends on the complexity of the scheme, see ‘sketch design’.

While it is much less risky to get approval from the BCO with a full set of drawings and specification it is possible, in some domestic situations, for the works to be undertaken under a ‘building notice’.  If you have a trusted, experienced contractor the building notice enables you to commence works without having the detail worked out.  The contractor would be expected to liaise with the BCO and build in compliance with his directions.  While this format reduces the architect fees it can lead to lengthy programmes, where the contractor has to agree each element with the BCO before ordering materials, and errors on site through miscommunications of your ideas.  In effect it is a lot clearer for everyone involved and you have more control over your project if all the ideas are agreed with the BCO prior to commencing site works.  Only use a Building Notice where you are happy to let your builder make decisions for you or where you are happy to input a lot of your own time for meetings and phone calls during working hours.


Initial visit

Brief and building appraisal

Sketch Design


Costs; pre-planning application

Detail design



Costs; post-planning application