Last edited 24 May 2021

Concept design

Concept design generally takes place after feasibility studies and options appraisals have been carried out and a project brief has been prepared. The concept design represents the design team's initial response to the project brief.

Some designers will differentiate between 'concept design' and 'scheme design'. In this case, the 'concept' is the initial design idea, whereas the 'scheme' develops the concept, taking on board more functional and practical considerations. Most project plans have now combined these two steps into the single stage 'concept design', or 'concept'.

Concept design is followed by 'detailed design' or 'developed design' during which all the main components of the building and how they fit together are described.

During the concept design stage, the consultant team will develop:

Descriptions of the design tasks that are performed during this stage can be found at:

Where building information modelling (BIM) is being used, at this stage, the built asset might be represented by massing diagrams or 2D symbols representing generic elements, with some critical elements developed in more detail. The project information model may also include drawings, reports and other structured information directly related to the built asset and its facilities, floors, spaces, zones, systems and components.

It can also be useful at this stage to generate presentation material such as photo visualisations and 3D walk-throughs that help facilitate employer assessments and consultations with user panels, champions, and other stakeholders.

At the end of the stage, the consultant team will prepare a concept design report for the client which records the basic design concepts for the preferred option that might be worth further investigation in the detailed design stage. The concept design report will also identify any instructions required from the client.

The project brief will continue to develop as the concept design is prepared, but is then frozen at the end of the concept design stage and change control procedures are introduced.

An application for planning permission might be made during the concept design stage. This is likely to be an outline planning application if made at the beginning of the stage or a detailed planning application if made once the concept design is complete.

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This is exactly what i was searching for. Many people don't know how to convey what a concept design is. This article was very beneficial and i am sure it will help many budding architects to learn what a concept design in architecture actually means.

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