Style & Building Considerations for Cultivation and Processing Operations: Element Two


By Laura Breit, PE &amp Dylan Carey, EIT

Approach equals solution when it comes to designing and developing a cannabis cultivation or processing operation. A nicely-executed design and style and building approach will outcome in a nicely-functioning and nicely-constructed facility that will yield excellent solution. All also generally, growers and processors go by means of the approach of developing a facility and find out – also far down the road – that errors have been produced or essential actions have been skipped. Errors like this can outcome in key expenditures of each time and capital, and can tremendously effect an operation’s bottom line.

The Root Engineers group has broken the design and style-make approach into eight distinct phases: owner choices, pre-design and style, schematic design and style, design and style improvement, building documents, permitting, bidding, and the building phase. Each and every of these phases warrant an in-depth exploration to highlight the most essential considerations for the design and style and make of a thriving cannabis operation. In Element 1 of this report series, we discussed the owner choices phase of the design and style and building approach. Right here in Element Two of this 3-portion series, we dive deep into the design and style approach with the pre-design and style, schematic design and style, design and style improvement, and building documents phases.

PHASE two: PRE-Style

In this phase of the project, an architect will frequently function straight with the finish customers – or these who will be operating the operation on a day to day basis – on facility programming. Facility programming is the approach in which details is gathered from the user so that the architect can commence to create floor plans to meet the owner’s ambitions. In the most thriving projects, the owner and finish customers will create a set of requirements recognized as the Owner’s Project Specifications (OPR). As defined by ASHRAE and National Institute of Developing Sciences, the Owner’s Project Specifications “form the basis for evaluating all activities and items throughout pre-design and style, design and style, building, acceptance, and operational choices are produced.” This document serves as a record to assist all parties involved in the project identify their degree of achievement in meeting the owner’s objectives and criteria.

The architect – generally in conjunction with the engineering group – may perhaps also commence code analysis in the pre-design and style phase to identify the hazard classification of the developing, if this hasn’t currently been completed.


After the improvement of the floor program has begun, the schematic design and style phase is officially underway. Right after the initial floor plans have been completed by the architect, an engineering group ought to be brought on board (if not currently on board) to talk about the specifications for the space. Examples of tasks that take place throughout this phase: Mechanical engineers will analyze routes for ductwork and space for air handling gear. Electrical engineers will find the space to residence all electrical gear and controls. Plumbing engineers will appear for the most acceptable regions to route huge pipe systems and gear needed for plumbing. The project may perhaps call for structural engineers to inspect the developing for structural stability, which dictates exactly where specific gear can be placed or exactly where underground plumbing systems can be routed. Civil engineers are also normally a portion of the approach, who will give a web site program outlining exactly where city utilities are situated in relation to the web site. They will also give guidance on exactly where gear ought to be situated outdoors of the developing footprint.

These numerous considerations will lead to the complete group of engineers generating a set of schematic design and style drawings. Properly-run projects will also involve a narrative recognized as the Basis of Style (BOD), which ought to give an overview of the design and style intent and relate back to the OPR created in the pre-design and style phase. The schematic design and style drawings and BOD are sent to the owner for evaluation and approval.

To save time and work, it is essential to pick out an engineering group with experience in the disciplines needed for your project, as nicely as certain expertise in cannabis cultivation and processing facilities. Engineers with the correct expertise will know the essential queries to ask early on, and will have an understanding of the regulatory specifications for your special facility.

PHASE four: Style Improvement (DD)

Right after the owner has reviewed the schematic drawings and supplied feedback, the design and style improvement phase starts. In this phase, the design and style group – architect, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) Engineers, structural engineers, and civil engineers – coordinates to commence transforming the schematic drawings into clearer and extra detailed plans, related to what a single may possibly see on a building web site. The DD set of drawings frequently brings the design and style to a 50 % level. This set of plans will involve key elements of the design and style, such as gear size and place and utility connection areas.

It is essential to give as considerably detail as probable in this phase, and bring up any prospective difficulties early on in the approach. Key adjustments later down the road will be particularly expensive and time consuming. After the design and style group has completed their 50 % drawings, the owner will when once more evaluation and give feedback.

PHASE five: Building DOCUMENTS (CD)

The building documents phase is exactly where the majority of time in the design and style approach is spent. After once more, the complete design and style group will function closely collectively to dig deeper into the certain information of the operation design and style. New queries will be asked, earlier assumptions are confirmed or denied, and a complete design and style starts to take shape. The design and style group will be exceedingly essential in this phase simply because of all of the coordination across distinctive disciplines. Making certain the group operates nicely collectively and maintains powerful relationships with a single a further is a essential consideration.

Engineering teams that have a deep understanding of the approach will bring up points of key concern early in the approach. Although time consuming, this method will assist to streamline the building documents phase. Assuming the design and style timeline enables, the owner will be sent a progress set of drawings to give feedback on, which will be anyplace from 75 to 90 % total. Sooner or later, a 100 % completed set will be sent to the owner, like pre-final drawings and specifications. After all parties have authorized the 100 % set of design and style drawings, the design and style group will stamp and seal the documents and distribute them to the owner. At this point the design and style portion of the approach is total.

At very first glance, this approach can appear overwhelming and complex, but it does not have to be. If you take the time to make a trustworthy group of seasoned people, the approach ought to run smoothly and retain your plans on track. By generating these essential choices and mastering essential details at the correct occasions, company owners will set themselves up for achievement. Keep tuned for the final portion of this 3-portion series, exactly where we will discover the permitting, bidding, and building phases.

In Case You Missed It

Style &amp Building Considerations for Cultivation and Processing Operations: Element 1


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