The design scope includes roads, paved areas, pathways, drainages, water bodies, fountains, entry drives, gates, pavilions, recreation areas, gazebos, boundary walls, external lighting areas, signages, terraces, etc.
Characteristics of a Robust External development work design can be measured vis a vis:
Aspects in coordination with architects &Interior designers
· Designing for t
· and Physical activity
· Designing all external works which conform to sanctioned/regulatory approvals
· Designing for Efficient utilization of space in the landscape area
Aspects in coordination with MEP designers
Inputs that contribute to making a good design of Hardscape (landscape) design include:
1 Proposing the right choice of materials, in terms of specifications while optimizing costs for the following:
Types of materials for use
Key specifications of building materials (as required by customers and National/international Quality standards)
Stones/Marbles, Paving material, Pebbles
Natural or synthetic, Overall dimensions -size, commercial name, country, thickness, colour, hardness, grain size, texture, polish ability, chemical properties, etc.
Shape, size, thickness, compression strength, and coefficient of friction to prevent skidding
Types (e.g., Asphalt, Concrete, albed, asphalt mixture, asphalt binder, etc.)
Structure steel, low alloy steel, Stainless steel, etc
Tensile strength, yield strength, elasticity, hardness, ductility, strain, toughness, and so on
size, colour, luster, grains, content, hardness, density, shear resistance, and so on
strength to weight, air tightness, heat deflection, corrosion resistance, appearance, and so on
Strength, fire resistance, weather resistance, durability, size, colur, chemical resistance, thermal resistance,
Material type (steel, aluminum, plastic, glass, etc.), size, strength, type of lights, colour, language, etc.
And so on
2. Incorporating, in Hardscape-related design & drawings, good practices for construction or & installation of the following as per applicable Quality standards:
· Construction of irrigation & drainage system, subsoil drainage.
· Construction of sculptures, water bodies
· Laying of turf
· Developing Golf areas
· Installation, testing & commissioning of signboards, streetlights, night lighting unique fixtures, etc.
· Constructing external walls
· Controlling vehicular traffic
· Paving slabs
· Surfacing of gravels
· Laying of Kerbs and stones
· Construction & erecting structures
· This may require using design software such as Idea spectrum Realtime landscape pro, NCH software dream plan, smart draw, etc., and other software options
Five stages for developing the design of hardscape/external development
Design activities vary considerably from company to company, but generally, there are five stages to designing the Hardscape as below. Whatever designing processes and software are used, designing must result in developing Robust designs by accomplishing the following:
· Build designs that are comprehensive, accurate
· Contributes to building quality in construction by incorporating national and international quality standards in BOQ/material specifications and construction processes
· Integrates statutory and safety requirements (if applicable) in the designs and drawings
· Optimise project costs
· Enables efficient delivery of designs & drawings
· Incorporates maker-checker step in each design stage through the implementation of segregation of duties concept
The five stages are:
Usually, there are 5 stages for designing hardscape/external development works as below.
· 1 Develop Concept designs
· 2 Develop a Detailed design
· 3 Develop Tenders (Technical design aspects
· 4 Estimating Costs
· 5 Issuing As-built drawing
This may require using design software such as AutoCAD, Autodesk Revit, etc., and other software options
In the below-listed activities, those marked *reflect those activities which can have adverse statutory implications.
Stage 1 Activities that can adversely impact business
· Not obtaining or and not incorporating inputs (like visioning for different types of rooms, halls, recreation areas, gazebos, restaurants, paved areas, pathways, water bodies, fountains, entry drives, gates, pavilions, boundary walls, lighting areas, signages, terraces) from functions into building Hardscape design
· Using unlicensed software while developing a concept design for Hardscape.
· Not vetting the concept and detailed design/making compromises while vetting Hardscape, in collaboration with, inhouse or outsourced Hardscape consultant, by skipping or compromising on important designs and drawings aspects such as below.
Vis a vis Hardscape Features:
· Tolerances on material specifications and Workmanship
· Statutory code-related requirements for Hardscape. *
· National and international standards for quality
· Raw Materials (hardware, glazing, stones, claddings, etc.) sizes and specifications
· Quality requirements and suggestive gauging
· Hardscape safety requirements*
· Bribing mandatory Agencies which approve the Hardscape relevant for issuing compliance *
Stage 2 Activities that can adversely impact business
· Design intent not aligned to approved concept design.
· Hardscape detailed drawings, not comprehensive vis a vis site plans/drawings with dimensions, gradings, material, soil depth, drainage, water features, etc. or not accurate
· Material specification incomplete
Stage 3 Activities that can adversely impact business
· In the tender, the designer/architect includes names and brands of specific materials only for pre-identified /preferred vendors of the designer/architect in return for commission/kickback from such vendors. *
· The designer/architect recommends only a single source for many BOQ materials and thus leaving very few options with the project materials team to negotiate prices aggressively in return for commission/kickback from such vendors
· Tender drawings not incorporating applicable quality standards for all works.
· Tender drawings not incorporating applicable statutory requirements vis-à-vis applicable national/international codes w.r.t safety. *
Stage 4 Activities that can adversely impact business
Computing Hardscape costs based on thumb rules rather than on the first principal basis vis-à-vis following, leading to underestimating or overestimating project costs.
· Skipping a few BOQ input/raw materials costs for some of the areas such as roads, paved areas, pathways, drainages, water bodies, fountains, entry drives, gates, pavilions, recreation areas, gazebos, boundary walls, external lighting areas, signages, terraces, etc
· Inaccurate estimates of Cost elements such as BOQ materials used for civil works, steel, equipment, etc. both for inhouse and those in the scope of Contractor including labor component, construction, installation, etc. for all types of Hardscape elements
Stage 5 Activities that can adversely impact business
· The landscape designer /architect issuing “As-built drawings” for hardscape drawings that are aligned to earlier approved drawings by the project head but at variant vis-à-vis actual completed physical construction (in terms of approved plans and construction materials used etc).
You can read more about the 21 activities that can adversely impact business in Chapter 1 of my handbook ETHICS in the real estate and hospitality industry, Volume 1- Architectural, Interior design and MEP services “