para-CAD

Changed my perspective about plan review outsourcing

Recommended Posts

Our county just went paperless for the permit submission process.  They are swamped/busy so they outsource the first look at a set of plans to WCCC, a plan checking firm.  Of course, when WCCC found FIVE pages of things they wanted added to my super-duper plans, my first reaction was anger.  "What the..........?"

 

Well, I've come to a new understanding.

 

I'm a solo business.  I have NO review staff.  I double, triple, quadruple check my work then send it off and see what happens.  Since going paperless, I have had 2 plans come back with additional info requested.  So this has got me thinking.

 

Other than some lost time, I've been given the opportunity to tighten up my plans.  This company (WCCC) has:

- done a plan check for me

- created a list with code references

- included screenshots of the area in question

 

So, once I choked-out my misplaced pride, I realized this was a great opportunity to make it a new challenge to improve my construction docs.  Now I am more focused to address all kinds of little things that I was used to being industry standard and assumed, now being written out and addressed.

 

I went from pissed off to motivated to take up the challenge.  Just wanted to share.

  • Like 1
  • Upvote 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
44 minutes ago, para-CAD said:

I went from pissed off to motivated to take up the challenge.

I love that.  I've found that several different jurisdictions in my area have different (but complimentary) sets of things they want in the ConDocs.  I'm getting a pretty good "Boiler Plate" Layout Template that saves me a lot of time and shortens the plan check drastically.

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find that having to deal with 50 different cities, there is no way of covering that in one template, so I just keep it simple and adjust per city requirements. And no 2 cities are alike, they each have their own notes they need. 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It would be against their best interest to say "this plan looks fine as it is"  You will add the items they requested and the next time, they will request different changes.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, javatom said:

It would be against their best interest to say "this plan looks fine as it is"  You will add the items they requested and the next time, they will request different changes.

You got that right, even within each city , each plan checker wants different things, there is no standard. I once had a plan checker in Long Beach Ca, mark the heck  of one of my pans b/c she wanted me to change the page layout to her liking, Well, I went to the city manager and next thing I know plan was approved without any changes. Never had any problems with her again. Sometimes you need to speak up on things like that and go to a higher source.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really wish the City of San Diego would implement digital submittals.  The last project I did required 7 sets:

  • Planning
  • Zoning
  • Structural
  • Historical
  • Landscaping
  • T-24
  • Engineering

Then if there were corrections for any of the above in most cases they want a complete new set resubmitted.

They also have a lot of specific formats for presentation of information - often not the way I like to present the data.

 

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here in Florida, the Florida Building Code has stopped a lot of that behavior but yes each plan reviewer has their quirks.

My biggest problems would be solved with a "Find & Replace".

Also I jump back & forth between residential & commercial which have slightly different requirements.

I do not have a separate set of notes for commercial.

  • Like 1
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know it's an old topic, but what's WCCC? Are there firms out there that just check plans? 

 

It got me wondering, here we need an Architect to sign off on any commercial modification requiring a permit, for simple projects it'd be nice if a internet architect could sign off so I didn't bug the grumpy guy I work with on little projects! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My contact with WCCC is as an outside plan check firm in California (West Coast Code Consultants).

If you can find a licensed architect willing to review and seal your plans digitally, I'd expect most jurisdictions would accept a locally printed seal and signature.

Technically, they probably shouldn't, but if its a smaller project and simple stuff I bet they would. I know all my truss calcs are submitted that way.

I like having lunch with my engineer, so I've never tried printing his signature from a PDF. If I do, I'll report back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now

  • Member Statistics

    28281
    Total Members
    6254
    Most Online
    New2Chief
    Newest Member
    New2Chief
    Joined