Building Project Procedures Manual

Real Estate & Facilities

Appendix 5I: Schematic & Preliminary Design Reviews

Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia
Office of Facilities
January 2000

This is intended to be a guide to help us conduct more productive design review meetings. The purpose of these meetings is not for the user(s) and the project architect¹ to discuss alternatives, review issues, consider budgetary implications, investigate site and situation considerations, or perform other similar work-group tasks.

Rather, these meetings are intended to present information to the owner's representative(s) and to answer questions regarding the project architect's proposed design solution. The approved schematic design or approved preliminary design documents establish the basis on which the project architect is given written approval to proceed with the next contractual phase of the design process by this office.

The Program Manager² is the official reviewer at the Schematic Design meeting and serves as this Office's technical representative at the Preliminary Design meeting. Thus, at the Schematic Design review meeting the Program Manager should expect to receive a presentation from the senior member of the project architect's design team. The presenter should be supported by other technical members³ of the design team as needed to explain or clarify issues. This presentation should follow, in concept, the methodology identified below for a Preliminary Design review meeting.

The campus should perform those responsibilities as identified in the Building Project Procedure manual.

¹ Project architect = private A/E firm commissioned by the Board of Regents to provide design services for a capital improvement project. For some projects (e.g., utility system upgrade), the "project architect" role may be filled by an engineering company.
² Program manager = Board of Regents professional staff member assigned to represent the owner's interests.
³ Technical members of the project architect's team may include a variety of subcontractors, including architects, engineers, or professionals providing other specialty services.


    • The Program Manager should authorize the project architect to commence the Schematic Design process when the campus has approved a building program, and the Program Manager has confirmed that the program is consistent with the Regent's approved scope and cost.

    • The Program Manager should authorize the project architect to schedule the final Schematic Design Review meeting when the Program Manager has received confirmation of the following from the project architect:

      • The soils investigation has been commenced (BPP4, A5A-1-4);
      • The boundary survey and topographic site survey, consistent with the project program and the campus' physical master plan, have been completed (including Preliminary Utilities Report, BPP A5B-1)
      • The title search has been initiated (BPP, A5G-1-6);
      • The Environmental Site Assessment (BPP A6D & E) and flood plain information have been received;
      • Review of seismic hazard assessment has occurred;
      • The Program Manager and the campus have been presented with, and considered, three (3) reasonable design options, all of which are consistent with the approved project program;
      • The building issues and concepts identified in the Preplanning Guidelines have been addressed;
      • The Program Manager's checklist (BPP, A5F-1) has been completed;
      • Full and appropriate consultation between the campus user(s), campus administration, and the project architect has occurred; and
      • The project architect has provided an "in budget" cost estimate with supporting documentation.
    • Any exemption requests (design criteria, design philosophy, etc.) should be thoroughly identified by the project architect, justified in writing, and formally approved or denied no later than the Schematic Design review meeting. This should not, however, be the first time that the need for an exemption is identified, discussed or evaluated by the project architect, the campus, and the Program Manager.

4 BPP = Building Project Procedure manual, followed by page reference, e.g., Appendix 5, page B-l).

    • The Program Manager should authorize the project architect5 to schedule the Preliminary Design Review meeting when:

      • The Title Search request has been transmitted to the Attorney General's office;
      • The project architect certifies that the information contained in the soils investigation has been received, evaluated, and the preliminary plans appropriately respond to the report's findings;
      • The appropriate level of environmental review and evaluation has been completed and approved by Director of Environmental Safety and the Vice Chancellor for Facilities;
      • The project architect has prepared the appropriate code analysis, including Life Safety Plan;
      • The project architect has provided a completed Final Checklist of Utilities (BPP, A6C-1) to the Program Manager;
      • The project architect has provided an "in budget" cost estimate in the form of a Budget Certificate, including appropriate back-up documentation (BPP, A6F-1);
      • The loose equipment list, reconciled with the loose equipment budget and together with a preliminary furniture layout plan, has been approved by the campus and received by the Program Manager (BPP, A6J-1-6);
      • The Program Manager has completed all items on the Preliminary Design Submittal Checklist (BPP A6H-1;
      • The campus has participated fully in the design development process and the campus President has approved the Preliminary Plans; and
      • The Program Manager has received from the project architect (at least one week in advance of the Preliminary Design review meeting) a meeting agenda that follows the desired sequence of presentation topics, identifies key members of the project architect's design team, underscores any items of special or particular interest, includes the project Budget Certificate, includes an 8.5x11 campus map that clearly identifies the project site, and includes a project space/size summary that relates directly back to the information approved by the Board of Regents.

    • The Program Manager shall introduce the participants, identifying the role of each
    • Statement by the senior campus representative to describe the nature and purpose of this building
    • The presentation, orchestrated by senior member of the project architect's design team, should start with a:
      • Statement of facts; for example, the project is in scope, under budget, and the environmental documentation is complete. Include a description of the project objectives to assist in establishing the project's review parameters.6
      • The architect's presentation should continue with a review of the Preliminary Plans by quickly reviewing the three design options and explaining why the selected option was chosen, and then discuss the proposed:
        • Soils and foundation systems;
        • Structural system and external surfacing concepts;
        • Roof design;
        • Interior layout and configuration; explain adjacency requirements;
        • Building systems: HVAC, plumbing, electrical and communications
        • Discuss any "specialty systems," e.g., laboratory ventilation, theater lighting/acoustics, special presentation or data transmission requirements, etc.;
        • Clearly identify all utility connection points and confirm the availability of sufficient capacity at the point of connection;
        • Review any aspects of the Preplanning Guidelines not previously discussed; and conclude with a discussion of the
        • Landscaping, including disposal of surface drainage, parking, pedestrian access, trash disposal and other building service needs.
    • The senior member of the project architect's design team will review, as a part of the above discussions if necessary, the need for an exemption from the design criteria or design philosophy as was discussed as part of the Schematic Design review process.
    • The campus representative will be asked to comment on the decisions discussed and made at this meeting.
    • The senior member of the architect's design team will:
      • Review the project schedule from Preliminary Design meeting forward, assuring consistency with the contract requirements or identifying the need to execute a contract amendment for the purpose of correcting the project schedule;
      • Repeat for confirmation and clarity any directions received as part of this meeting; and
      • Within five working days, submit a copy of the minutes of this meeting, together with a clear enumeration of any directed action items, to all attendees.
    • Upon receipt of the minutes from the project architect, the Program Manager will follow up in writing to indicate that the Preliminary Design Plans are approved, conditionally approved, or that the plans are being rejected and referred back to the project architect for corrections as identified.

Close of meeting.

5 The project architect must assure that a representative of the Fire Marshal's office and the Construction Division of GSFIC have been invited.
6 The consultant's team presenter conclude the introduction portion of the presentation by identifying the project's goals and context; for example, provide x classrooms, y labs, z research spaces, etc. at ___ location as shown on the campus' physical master plan. The building is intended to serve ___ purposes and will incorporate the ___ and ___ design concepts in a manner consistent with the campus' architectural palette and design preferences). Consistent with the Board of Regent's approval, this project includes ___ gross square feet and ___ assignable (net) square feet which equates to a total project cost of $___.

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