The building process

Regardless of their size, all projects progress through the same building process of initial concept to design & documentation to construction.

The following Flow Chart sets out the standard design, documentation and building stages involved in undertaking all building projectsand a summary of some of the services that we can provide.

FLOW CHART : Design & Documentation process:

Summary of Core Architectural Services:

Pre-Design Stage

  • Obtain the client's brief and other requirements
  • Assess site conditions and constraints
  • Undertake Measured Drawings (if required)

Sketch Design stage

  • Prepare sketch proposals / solutions / options
  • Preliminary assessment of authority regulations and requirements
  • Obtain the client's approval to proceed to next stage
Coordinate preparation of a preliminary estimate of the Cost of Works

Design Development

  • Develop the sketch design to a final workable design solution (preliminary Building Application stage).
  • Coordination of consultants' design work/advice/input.
  • Review the final design against the brief, budget and authorities
  • Obtain the client's approval to proceed to DA or next stage
Coordinate preparation of an updated estimate of the Cost of Works

Town Planning /Development Application (DA)

  • Confirm statutory requirements
  • Prepare application, including plans, studies, reports as required
  • Assist the client with lodging formal application

Building Application Documentation (BA)

  • Prepare minimum architectural drawings and consultant documentation sufficient for building approval.
  • Coordination of other specialist consultants work.
  • Obtain the client's approval to lodge documents for BA.

Construction / Tendering Documentation

  • Prepare remaining construction drawings, construction details and schedules to enable tender and construction
  • Coordination of other specialist consultants work.
  • Prepare a specification describing the quality of materials, finishes and workmanship necessary.
  • Obtain the client's approval to call tenders
Coordinate preparation of a pre-tender estimate of the Cost of Works
  • Prepare tender documents and issue to all tenderers
  • Respond to tenderer's enquiries
  • Close and assess tenders
  • Negotiate with the preferred tenderer if required


  • Prepare contract documents for signing by both parties


  • Undertake periodic site visits to observe the general conformance of the construction works with the building contract documents.
  • Provide supplementary details and information.
  • Provide instructions to clarify the documents where required.
  • Arrange and attend site meetings and other meetings as required.
  • Review shop drawings and other builder's submissions.
  • Assess progress claims and issue progress certificates.
  • Assess and approve claims for extensions of time.
  • Adjust prime cost and provisional sums included in the contract.
  • Coordinate consultants.
  • Prepare defects lists prior to practical completion.
  • Inspect rectification and issue notice of practical completion.

Post Construction Administration

  • Assess the final contract amount
  • Inspect the works and prepare final defects listing
  • Assess completion of all defects and outstanding work
A traditional "Full Architectural Service" entails all of the above stages.


Watson Architects offers services and experience in:

  • Residential projects
    • new design
    • alterations and additions
  • Conservation and adaptive re-use of heritage and existing buildings
  • Architectural advice in town planning and assessment matters
  • Conservation / heritage consultancy advice
  • Environmentally sound and sustainable design
  • Commercial developments
  • Expert witness work