Every project faces 6 key issues.
Every project faces 6 key issues. They are Needs, Character, Context, Constraints, Schedule and Budget. You will need a good understanding of these six because the goals for every project lie in these six areas.
Ideally each of these issues would be addressed during pre-design by determining what a successful outcome in each area would look like. If you are able to get that determination of what success looks like, you have a much greater chance of actually delivering a successful project.
This is what is entailed by each of the key issues.
Needs encompasses spaces and the types of spaces required. Part of this issue is also the relationships that these spaces should have to one another. Identifying specific functions that need to be accomplished are also part of this issue:
Character includes non-spatial issues and some of these are immaterial as well.
Context considers the environment in which the project takes place. Whether the project is a free standing building, an addition, or a remodeling, there will be issues arising from the surroundings of the project.
Constraints are the limitations and restrictions that the project will encounter. Some are universal, but most are specific to the project and its context.
The schedule issue is part of most things. However, most projects have schedules that consist of innumerable tasks within four broad phases before occupancy occurs.
The issue of budget is the most crucial issue for the majority of projects. The budget has revenue and expense sides to the issue. In a general way the whole project is usually an attempt to match the sources of funds with the expenditures that the other five key issues require you to make.
The viability of the project hinges on whether the funds are available for the expenditures that need to be made. The sooner the entire cost is identified, the smoother the project can proceed - if it can proceed at all.
The costs fall into 2 categories - hard costs and soft costs.
Hard costs are:
You will find that you return to these six issues over and over during the project. Some issues resolve themselves fairly early in a project; but others, for example Schedule and Budget, will require attention right up to final occupancy.