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Step 8 in Church Building – Construction Drawings and Building Permit

Step 8 in ‘Your New Church Building and Design in 10 Easy Steps’ will help get you out of that temporary facility and into a permanent church building of your own. If you have outgrown your facility, it will teach you how to expand or relocate.

Step 8 looks at Zoning, Entitlements and your Building Permit.

Construction drawings are put together by your architect. It is one of the steps they take in developing a permit-ready set of plans. All architectural drawings should begin by looking at the programs you currently run, and want to begin when the new faiclity is built. Determining those needs comes alongside of Schematic Designs in Step 5. After completing those, you are ready for design development and then construction drawings.

Construction drawings are the set of plans that will be used for the actual construction of the facility. It is  the nuts and bolts of the project that shows – this goes here and this goes here – and exactly how to put the whole project together. You need to wait until your construction drawings are complete before you submit  drawings to the city for a building permit.

You should have a Development Team working on the construction drawings, and it should include the architect, structural engineer, mechanical engineer, electrical engineer, civil engineer and the sound, video and lighting team. The architect never works alone on your design, they always work with your whole Development Team. Because there are a lot of people working on the Development Team, you need to know the roles and responsibilities of everyone. I have put together an e-book for you, called Understanding The Roles and Responsibilities of Your Development Team. You need to know who is on the Development Team, what their responsibilities are, what each entity is accountable for, and what they are going to deliver. The Developmment Team costs a lot of money. Learn what each part of the Development Team will be doing for your project.

You want to have a builder on board before the architect starts construction documents. That way the builder is overseeing the cost as the design is developed. This is called value engineering. The builder knows the cost better than anyone else, and they will help the architect stay within a pre-determined budget, that you have set, to spend on the building. If you turn the architect loose, the odds are: more than sixty percent of all drawings that get permitted are thirty percent or more over budget when they go out to bid. So if you have a three million dollar building, the odds are high that it is going to be a four million dollar building when you go to bid. If you have a ten million dollar building, it will be a thirteen million dollar building. Thirty percent is a lot of money. You need to protect yourself. Do not let the architect design these drawings without a professional builder overseeing it and incorporating value engineering to keep everything on budget. If you fail to do that, you risk taking a finished set of drawings and throwing it in the trash, because you cannot afford it.

Please don’t ever start construction without a building permit – the final building permit! I had a church in Seattle start building without the final building permit. The pastor wanted to get construction underway as quickly as possible, so he started construction without the final building permit and it was disastrous. He started the project with the contractor. The contractor was spending money like you would not believe: grading, foundation work, and concrete retaining walls going up. Then, when they got the final permit, there had been adjustments made to the construction drawings during the permit processing phase. The structural engineer had to modify some things and footings were changed, some steel sizes changed–that is all part of the permit process. When they got the final permit, those drawings did not look like the un-permitted set that the builder started with. The builder hit the church for a couple million bucks in change orders! In addition, they had to tear out hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of steel and concrete work that they had done according to the non-permitted set, in order to comply with the permitted set. Please, do not ever start construction on your project until you have a permitted set of drawings. Do not let anybody talk you into it. If someone is trying to talk you into it or you feel like they are convincing you, call me at 719-439-3019!

We are here to encourage, equip and empower you to develop the church building of your dreams, the facility you need in order to reach the lost and develop disciples, to turn the vision God has given you into a reality. We are also here to protect you.

Call me now at 719-439-3019. And download the free e-books that will give you a world of knowledge about the process of church constrution.

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