An Introduction to the Different Types of Construction Drawings | Innovation

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Anyone who works in the industry is intimately familiar with different  of construction . But can you define the differences between them?

Here’s a simple primer for understanding the differences and the roles each type of drawing plays in the construction process.

 

An to Construction Drawings

Introduction-to-Construction-Drawings“Construction drawings” refer to the collection of final preconstruction drawings that represent the building as a whole

The term “construction drawings” refers to the collection of final preconstruction drawings that represent the building as a whole. They are the pictorial record of the official design for the building, and generally include detailed depictions of every element of the finished building including the foundation, floor, walls, elevations, interior details and elevations, cabinetry, MEP design, structural details, and ceiling plans.

Construction drawings are produced by the design team, and go through several drafts during the design phase before the final draft becomes part of the contract, which is then sent out to be bid on by contractors. The winning contractor is bound by all of the contract documentation, including the construction drawings.

Construction Drawings:

  • Represent the building as a whole as designed
  • Are produced by the design team
  • In a traditional construction environment, are created before the project is bid on
  • Are official contract documents
  • Are subject to mark-ups, change orders, and redlining throughout the project

Shop Drawings: Building Components as Designed

Introduction-to-Shop-DrawingsShop drawings are agreed upon by the design team, owners, contractors, and subs before work begins

The term “shop drawings” refers to drawings that are created by the contractor and/or subcontractors and/or prefab vendors to further define the design of specific building components. They are most frequently created for MEP components of the building, and may also be created to show details of cabinetry and other elements. They are necessary for planning the prefabricated components of a building, and as such have become more numerous as the use of prefab and modular construction technology has become more common.

Shop drawings are created prior to construction, and are agreed upon by the design team, owners, contractors, and subs before work begins. They are not usually a part of the official contract documents, and may occasionally be produced during the course of construction as necessary.

Shop Drawings:

  • Represent building components as designed
  • Are produced by the contractor and subcontractors
  • In a traditional construction environment, are created after the project is awarded and before construction begins
  • Are not usually official contract documents
  • May be subject to mark-ups, change orders, and redlining

 


Dive Deeper

How Cannistraro Innovates with Prefab and Modular Construction Technology:

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As-Built Drawings: All Components as Actually Built

The term “as-built drawings” refers to drawings that depict the building and all its components as they were actually constructed. Construction is complex and every project encounters unexpected obstacles and conditions that alter the plans.

As-built drawings are a set of drawings that represent the final exact construction of the building, including all materials, components, locations, dimensions, and other details of every element of the building. They are produced by the contractor and subcontractors after completion of the project.

As-built drawings are useful to building owners for maintenance, safety, repairs, and updates and renovations. Traditionally, they are created from the final redlined version of the original construction drawings and are time-consuming to produce. Today’s technology makes it possible to produce as-built drawings quickly and more accurately than ever, thanks to the ability to update construction drawings in real time as the project proceeds.

As-Built Drawings:

  • Represent the building as a whole and all its components as actually constructed
  • Are produced by the contractor and subcontractors
  • Are produced after the project is complete
  • Are sometimes mandated by the contract but are not part of the contract documents
  • May be subject to change during later renovations, but represent the final documents upon completion of initial construction

 

Types of Construction Drawings: Why It Matters

All three types of construction drawings are important, either for the process of construction or for the building’s operators after construction. Understanding the differences can help construction professionals make better use of their documents, and organize them more effectively.

 


 

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