Site Planning Defined
Site planning is one of the aspects of design that a lot of people don’t usually see. In particular, it influences the way that the project all comes together. A lot of people know that there’s a building on-site. But they forget that there is a plan that needs to come through about where that building is going to sit.
Parts of Site Planning
There’s the grading of the site, the access to the site, the parking to the site. ADA Accessibility, Americans with Disabilities Act. Accessibility is an important site planning aspect.
Planning for the removal of debris, for trash trucks to come in, and to be able to remove the trash are also important. Being able to access your site so that you are able to move in and out of your site with ease is very important.
The lighting of the site is important as well. How are you going to make that site look good? Are you going to have landscaping in there or offer that option? You need to be able to plan that out. How is the site lit? Lighting is important at night time to make access to the site safe. There is so much necessary to plan a site the right way. That is why you need to consider a true professional who is experienced in proper site design.
Site Planning at Development One
Here at DevelopmentOne, we provide site planning in all our projects. Proper site planning is important so that the building is on the site with the right amenities. We also think about:
- Sun exposure
- Prevailing winds
There are so many aspects of the site that are important to consider.
What are some common mistakes in site planning? Some of what we see is pretty basic. There may not be enough parking stalls. Sometimes, the building does not consider the disabled in designing your site. This includes the proper parking and access to the building from the parking lot. Sometimes there may not be proper sidewalks so that people can walk to your site. Sometimes a site may have the wrong grade. This could mean that it’s hard to go from your parking spot to access the building. There may be a lot of obstructions along the way, like curbs, sidewalks, and drains. It’s not good when these are along the path of travel. That is critical, especially when our elderly are using the site.
Proper Site Planning
Those are some mistakes that happen without proper site planning. To be a good site planner, you need the experience. That experience is not only about having the proper amount of parking spots. It’s not only about knowing how the building will sit on the site. You need to know the required codes of the cities in zoning laws. Also, you need to know how to work with the cities to be able to understand what the requirements are. You need to know how to put these in your project. This way, the site plan will meet the requirements of the city as well as providing a very good design.
It is a fine balance between the design process and meeting code. This is because there are some codes that are very difficult to put in place. But you have to meet code because they benefit the end user. They want to make sure that these laws show through design so that every user of the facility is able to benefit. There are many aspects of the experience required by a site planner. These include experience with the cities and codes, and experience with design. Then there’s the experience of the actual requirements of that site. Understanding how the built environment works is important in site planning. Everything from shadows, shading, prevailing winds, sun exposure, light exposure are important. You need to practice, learn, and have a proper education in the correct way of designing a site plan.
Without a Proper Site Plan
If all the right codes are not in the plan, there could be change orders during construction. Those mistakes and inexperience translate into cost overruns. Also, these are expenses that the client did not expect. That puts money into the contractor’s pocket. I’m all in favor of people making money. But it should not come from the mistakes of a site planner, or not using a proper site planner.
Commitment to Quality Service at Development One
Here at DevelopmentOne, change order prevention is important. We owe it to the client to be able to have documents that show a well-thought-out design that prevents change orders. Also, we do not want the city to come in and say, “hey, you missed this code.” Or, “you missed this zoning law” or, “you missed this setback.” That causes you to change your design during construction. We make sure that we have the knowledge to create the proper design.