Get to Know These Common Terms in Commercial Architecture and Construction

Commercial construction projects are fairly complex. And, as when you’re dealing with any industry you’re unfamiliar with, learning the lingo is an important step in reducing miscommunication and confusion. Here are some of the more common terms you’re likely to come across during this process, from a commercial architect in NJ.


This is essentially a quote for the project. It should be fairly detailed, involving design documents and a detailed look into your project’s specifications. In large projects, multiple companies may bid for the project and it’s up to the client to decide who gets the job.

Schematic Design: 

This is the first step in the design process, where you’ll sit with the architect and discuss the project in detail so that floor plans, site plans, elevations, and conceptual designs can be drawn up.

Site Plan: 

This is an architectural plan that looks at the entire site and not just the building itself. These are a very important part of the planning process, showing how the building will be orientated, the footprint of the building, location of utilities as well as the site’s topography. This will be part of the formal plans to be submitted to the local building office for approval.

Conceptual Design: 

It can be difficult to envision exactly what your commercial architect wants to deliver in terms of a finished project. This is where a conceptual design will help. It is almost an art piece – a visual representation of your completed project. It can be done in poster format, through 3D software or in traditional models. A conceptual design is often also used in sales brochures and advertisements for development projects like housing projects or office buildings.

Construction Contract: 

Once you accept a bid, a construction contract will be signed between you and the company. This is a formal, legally-binding contract that fills out the project and different responsibilities and commitments in detail, so that everyone is on the same page.

Construction Management: 

This is a service that a full-service commercial architect can provide. Essentially, they will project manage the entire process for you, using their expertise to guide the project, control the quality of work and materials, and keep it on track.

Punch List: 

Once the building project is at an end, it’s important to walk through the site and note down any aspects that need additional work or that are not up to the client’s specifications. This list is called a punch list, and only once every item is ticked off to the client’s satisfaction can the job be officially completed and paid for.

Full-Service Solutions for Projects in New Jersey from a Leading Commercial Architect

The New Jersey architectural firm of Seth A. Leeb offers full-service solutions for commercial building design projects in the New Jersey area. With 20 years of experience in the commercial architecture industry in restaurant, hospitality, office and dental office design, we can provide the expertise, skills, and innovative thinking you need to create a workplace that fits your vision and embodies your brand. For more information on working with us or to find out more about commercial architectural design in NJ or to speak to a medical office architect, please contact us today or visit our website at https://leeb-architecture.com/

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