The Simplest Solution is Usually the Best – Even for a Building Contractor

By Scott Hamele

building contractor, design-build Kansas City

Construction DesignWorks, Inc. Simplifies Design-Build in Kansas City

Some of you may have heard the term Occam’s Razor. It is typically used in the scientific community when evaluating explanations of a phenomenon. A number of possible and more complex alternative answers may be available. However, the simpler theory as opposed to the more complex is usually the best answer. This also applies to office construction and interior design-build. Architects, engineers and building contractors are presented with challenges every day. These challenges create the possibility for numerous solutions. It is too easy to get caught up in sophisticated and complex answers, much like going down a rabbit hole with no end in sight. It is often better to step back and look at the simplest solution to the problem.

An example of the simplest solution being the best idea occurred on an office construction project that was an interior design-build in Kansas City we did several years ago. We provided pre-design, architectural, engineering and construction services for a two story office building. The owner required 2000 sf mezzanine to be added in the building in which there was only one staircase to the new level. The designers and city got caught up in a battle of handicap accessibility to the second level as well as other ADA related requirements. To add a limited access elevator along with the design work, new elevator pit, concrete work, shaft walls, structural steel, and electrical was well over $100,000. The layout, configuration, details and design of this elevator was deliberated for well over one month. The simplest solution finally occurred to us. Providing a mirrored usage of space on both floors (offices, conference and break room) would enable ADA access of the lower floor for the same purpose as the upper floor, resulting in the elevator not being a requirement.

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At times we can overthink things and designs can become more complicated than they need to be to accommodate codes and accessibility when the simplest of solutions is often right in front of us. That is why having a design-build team with various skills, great communication and the ability to offer solutions plays such an important role in any project.

“The art of simplicity is a puzzle of complexity” – Douglas Horton

Article by Scott Hamele, DBIA. Scott is President of Construction DesignWorks, LLC. You can follow him on Twitter @constructionKC

Construction DesignWorks uses its hands-on approach and design expertise to create and develop a winning design build team that is specialized for each customer. Their complete turnkey solutions align with the unique business needs of various types of real estate. Construction DesignWorks, LLC. is located at 21961 West 83rd Street in Shawnee, Kansas. If you are looking for a building contractor or for more information about interior design-build in Kansas City, call (913) 745-4727 or visit their website http://constructiondesignworks.net.