What are Building Occupancies?

Have you ever seen your favorite local retail store go out of business only to become a completely different type of store later on? Building tenants change all of the time and their classifications may be very different. These classifications are referred to as occupancy groups and are an important part of the permitting process. The International Building Code (IBC) defines ten different occupancy groups: assembly (A), business (B), educational (E), factory and industrial (F), high hazard (H), institutional (I), mercantile (M), residential (R), storage (S), and utility (U). Occupancy groups are designated based on intended use; for example, a paper …

Oct 26, 2018 By Maria Kolar

A Look at the Latest Retail and Design Trends

Over the past two weeks, we attended retail conferences where we met with other retail industry professionals to learn more about strategies and innovations shaping the retail world today. What we found to be a common trend among retailers is that they are doing away with the old metrics for evaluating their store’s effectiveness. No longer are they paying as close attention to the number of sales per square foot. Instead they are looking at the lasting impressions they make on their visitors. They want to know – are customers receiving a memorable experience? Many retailers are utilizing technology and …

Oct 10, 2018 By Maria Kolar

Plan Sets and Drawings: What’s Needed for Submittals?

A couple weeks ago, we wrote about how attention to detail can speed up your permit process. In the article, we mentioned that applicants must be prepared to submit several sets of plan drawings so that the sets can be allocated to different departments for review. Let’s discuss this further – what are the different types of plan sets and when are they required? While the types of plan sets vary based on a project’s scope of work, the most common types include architectural, structural, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and civil. Architectural Plan Sets When applying for a building permit or …

Oct 1, 2018 By Maria Kolar

What to Consider When Designing a Retail Store

This week we are in Scottsdale, Arizona at the Retail Spaces event and next week we’ll be heading over to the International Retail Design Conference (IRDC) in Seattle. With retail so prominent on our mind, it’s the perfect opportunity to review design and permitting considerations surrounding retail stores. We have broken down three key elements that permit applicants must consider when working on a retail store: accessibility, egress, and racking. Accessibility New facilities and existing facilities being altered must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) construction and design standards. The design standards are very extensive and detailed to …

Sep 20, 2018 By admin