Digital Crayon: Article 2 – The School Planning Process
by David Epstein, September 19, 2012
Last article we discussed getting started on a facility project. In this article, let’s discuss how the master planning process might work. If it is an existing building or campus, we generally divide up the process into three components: Facility Analysis, Programming and Concept Design. If it’s a totally new project, then of course the Facility Analysis is not applicable. In this case, an analysis of the site might be more appropriate.
In the Facility Analysis, we evaluate the building and site systems in terms of maintenance, improvement, or replacement with our team of engineers and produce a report.
Finally, in Concept Design, we develop several design alternatives based on the programming work. The selected approach is further refined and becomes the final master plan. I should note at this point that these drawings are conceptual and sketchy in nature – the 30,000 foot view. But they provide a roadmap for campus or building development that can be developed over time. The entire master planning process can take a semester, sometimes longer. Needless to say, it’s wise to have the master plan approved before there is a significant board member change over.