Blue Designs - Architectural Designers

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Selling or Buying a House? Make sure the Plans are up to date!

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Wednesday, March 7, 2018, In : Building Plan Approval 


I often get asked whether you need a set of plans to sell your house  here in South Africa.  I also get called a lot to get illegal / 'as built' additions and buildings approved at Council.  Fortunately Johannesburg Council is a lot more relaxed than elsewhere in the world and usually will only order demolition if you have built over a servitude or the building/addition is unsafe or poorly built.

Increasingly banks and mortgage lenders are making it a requirement for a seller to have a complet...


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World's Tallest Sandcastles

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Friday, September 8, 2017, In : Architecture 

The Guinness World Record for the World's Tallest Sandcastle record has just been beaten.  The Sandcastle is in Duisburg, Germany and was commissioned by Schaunisland-Reisen a German Tour Company.  It is 16.58m (54.72ft) beating the previous record for a sandcastle in Odisha, India (which measured 14.84m (48.8ft tall).

 

Unlike one of  previous record holders - Ed Jarrett this project used Excavators and Cranes rather than hand packed sand.  The design features famous buildings around the wor...


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MAD and Stefano Boeri propose crinkled towers and vertical forests for Milan's disused Railway Yards.

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Thursday, April 13, 2017, In : Green Building 

MAD, Stefano Boeri Architetti and Mecanoo are among five architecture studios to unveil proposals to completely transform unused railways across Milan, creating high-density housing and swaths of greenery.
The five proposals emerged from a workshop held in December 2016, which invited architects to reimagine the brownfield sites of Farini, Porta Genova, Porta Romana, Lambrate, Greco, Rogoredo and San Cristoforo as public parks, social housing and hubs for sustainable modes of transport.
The ide...

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Solar Powered Safari Lodge offers Sustainable Luxury in Botswana

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Sunday, April 9, 2017, In : Energy Efficiency 


If visiting the rich wildlife at the Okavango Delta is on your bucket list, consider a stay at Sandibe Okavango, a sustainable safari lodge in Botsgo simultaneously blends in with the landscape and stands out from lowana that boasts a light environmental footprint. Designed by Michaelis Boyd and Nick Plewman, the recently reopened Sandibe Okavancal architectural typology with its curvaceous timber-clad form. The striking and sculptural 24-bed lodge overlooks the banks of the Sandibe River, a ...

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Kevin McCloud: Britain's best houses of 2015

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Wednesday, March 8, 2017, In : Architecture 


What makes a house a home? Kevin McCloud discusses the 20 houses on the short list for RIBA's House of the Year 2015 as well as his own ideal property.
You might think, after 14 series, that Grand Desigs would be running out of projects to film; that the pool of families prepared to reveal the details of not just their bathroom grouting but their wallets and marital tensions would be running dry. 

But no. To kick off the latest Channel 4 series of the show – the 15th – the programme-makers ...


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More than 400 Architecture Firms in the US address Donald Trump on Climate Change in an Open Letter

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Thursday, January 26, 2017, In : Climate Change 

Right before Donald Trump’s inauguration last Friday, more than four hundred American architecture firms—such as Leers Weinzapfel Associates, Smith-Miller + Hawkinson Architects, Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects, Lake Flato, and ZGF Architects LLP—signed an open letter addressed to the incoming president regarding climate change, writes Allison Meier of Hyperallergic. The campaign was organized by the Chicago-based organization Architects Advocate, which formed in September.

The letter asks...


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Safety Overhead - The Importance of Roof Maintence by ITC SA

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Saturday, November 12, 2016, In : Home Maintenance 

The recent storms and aftermath in Gauteng over the last few days means that it is very important to get a professional to check your roof for damage and any potential problems before  small problems become expensive ones.  Your roof is the first line of defense against rain, wind, hail, fire, ice, snow and extreme heat.

The Institute for Timber Construction - ITC-SA has written an excellent article on this :-
 

https://www.bebee.com/producer/@claire-cardwell/safety-overhead-the-importance-of-...
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This Reverse Pyramid is a Green Urban Community in the Skies of Paris

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Friday, October 28, 2016, In : Green Building 
https://www.bebee.com/producer/@claire-cardwell/this-reverse-pyramid-is-a-green-urban-community-in-the-skies-of-paris

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Urban SkyFarm Soaring With Sustainability by Aisha Abdelhamid

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Friday, September 16, 2016, In : Sustainability 
http://greenbuildingelements.com/2016/08/18/urban-skyfarm-soaring-sustainability/

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Living Walls play a significant role in tackling toxic air hot spots in cities.

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Friday, September 16, 2016, In : Green Building 
http://www.hortweek.com/living-walls-play-significant-role-tackling-toxic-air-hot-spots-cities/landscape/article/1408943

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Climate Change & Renewable Energy Myths - Greenpeace

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Saturday, August 13, 2016, In : Renewable Energy 
http://www.greenpeace.org/africa/en/campaigns/Climate-change/renewable-energy-myths/

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Enrolling your new home with the NHBRC is a statutory requirement, by Hometimes.co.za

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Thursday, August 4, 2016, In : NHBRC 
http://hometimes.co.za/2016/03/enrolling-your-new-home-with-the-nhbrc-is-a-statutory-requirement/

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Home is where the Bark is by Jonathan Glancey

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Thursday, July 28, 2016, In : Green Building 
https://www.1843magazine.com/design/home-is-where-the-bark-is

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Green Buildings can Reduce Climate Change

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Thursday, July 28, 2016, In : Green Building 
http://www.engineeringnews.co.za/article/green-buildings-can-reduce-climate-change-wgbc-2016-07-27

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Living Green - How it affects your Home Insurance

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Saturday, July 23, 2016, In : Green Building 
http://sustainablog.org/2016/07/living-green-how-it-affects-your-home-insurance/

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Regeneration and Urbanisation by Edgar Kiviet

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Tuesday, June 28, 2016, In : Architect 
https://www.bebee.com/producer/@claire-cardwell/regeneration-and-urbanisation-by-edgar-kiviet


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Choosing an Architect

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Friday, December 12, 2014, In : Architect 

The first step is to make sure your Architect/Designer is registered with SACAP (the South African Council for the Architectural Profession) - since 2006 it is illegal to practice Architecture or for a de-registered Architectural Professional to practice Architecture.... The first step is to appoint a SACAP (South African Council for the Architectural Profession) registered Architect/Designer.  A list of registered professionals can be found at www.sacapsa.com.  

1.) Do you think you can wor...


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What do I do if I make changes during the building process?

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Wednesday, October 24, 2012, In : House Plans 
It's quite common that a client and builder make changes that deviate from the approved plans during construction.  A new set of plans - Deviation Plans will need to be submitted to your local authority as soon as possible.  Fees will be charged for the new work and you will also have to submit a copy of the previously approved plans together with the new plans to Council.  You will not be able to get an Occupation Certificate without approved plans showing the changes you have made....
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Builder vs Project Manager vs Bakkie Builder - What's The Difference?

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Friday, August 3, 2012, In : Building 

Many people are not aware of the difference between a Building contractor, a Project Manager and a Bakkie Builder and there is a big difference. In many cases there is a degree of overlap and as with all businesses there are good ones and bad ones all the way through the mix.

Starting with a Building Contractor or Builder. Generally they employ a number of skilled workers and the majority of trades are done in-house. They own a much of their equipment and are able to take on larger projects. ...


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What is a SDP?

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Tuesday, April 17, 2012, In : SDP 
A SDP is a Site Development Plan, basically it is a map of your property showing all the buildings, services, coverage and FAR.  You will need a SDP if you are in a complex or if your property is zoned Residential 2 or 3, Business, Commercial or Special Use.
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How long are my approved building plans valid for?

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Thursday, February 16, 2012, In : House Plans 
It varies from municipality to municipality but in general your building plans will be valid for one year after approval, you can renew for a further year, but thereafter the plans would be treated as a new submission  In some cases you can get away with putting the foundations in and then finishing the building at a later date.
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Do I need Plans for a Wendy House?

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Tuesday, January 24, 2012, In : Wendy House 
The rules for Wendy Houses are the same as any habitable structure whether it be brick or any other building method.  You will need to have the plans drawn up and approved by the Local Authority before erecting your Wendy House.  If you stay in an Estate then the plans will have to be approved by the Body Corporate / Home Owners Association before you submit the plans to Council.
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How we draw up a set of House Plans

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Tuesday, December 20, 2011, In : House Plans 
We will need to come to site to take measurements and to see how your planned addition will fit in with the rest of the buildings on site and on surrounding stands.  We will also establish exactly what your requirements are.  The next stage is to get copies of previously approved plans, your Zoning Certificate and SG (Surveyor General) diagram from Council - for more information on Zoning Certificates and SG Diagrams check out our article - Getting Building Plans Approved.  We will then draw ...
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Electrical Certificate of Compliance

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Sunday, June 19, 2011, In : Building 

ELECTRICAL CERTIFICATE OF COMPLIANCE – NEW REGULATIONS

On 1st May 2009 new regulations came into effect with respect to the issuing and validity of anElectrical Certificate of Compliance.

There are a number of clauses under the The Occupational Health and Safety Act No 85 of 1993, which is administered by the Department of Labour,(initially for workplace safety but extended to residential dwellings), which are now in force and which have an impact on the use and transfer of  houses, dwell...


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I want to turn my garage into a granny flat.

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Tuesday, June 7, 2011, In : Rezoning 
If you want to turn your existing garage into a granny flat then the following need to be taken into consideration. Basically you will probably need to apply for consent for a second dwelling on your property.  Some areas like the Johannesburg area already allow a second dwelling or cottage to be built on the property. You will also need to check your title deeds and zoning to see if there is a restriction on having a second dwelling.  There are some factors that will allow separate living wh...
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What do I do if there are no plans for my house?

Posted by Blue Designs - Architectural Designers on Monday, May 16, 2011,

There are two options that you can follow. The first is to see if you can find out from the current owner who designed the house when it was built, because they should be able to give you a copy of the original plans. If they know who the builder was, he may be able to tell them if they don't know. If the house is an old one then the above is unlikely to be helpful and the only way to get a set of plans is to have someone measure the house and draw them up for you. If you are planning to alte...


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