ADA: Americans With Disabilities Act. All spaces inhabited by the public are required to comply with these requirements

BURN RATE: This is not a term applied to actual fires, but to the hours it takes to do business. It takes in all factors – employment salaries, administration help – basically the cost it takes to keep the doors open.  You then divide this into an hourly charge. This is the burn rate.

CA: Construction Administration; The process of managing the construction with the contractor – mainly dealing with paper work and onsite inspections and reviews

CASEWORK: Cabinets or built-ins for storage. Cabinets can have open shelves, drawers or doors, and can be installed on the wall or floor, against a wall, or in the middle of a room with a counter above

CCD: Cost Change Directive: Paper work that gives the Contractor direction to make changes to the construction documents and submit the costs for those changes.

DYE LOT: When fabric and carpet is made/dyed/woven, etc. it is done in certain production batches. There is no guarantee between the batches that the dyes used to achieve the color will come out perfectly matched from batch to batch., even though they try to make them consistent. That isn’t always a problem, but it is something to consider when you put two chairs next to each other that have been upholstered in different dye lots, for example.

FF&E: Furniture Fixture and Equipment

FFKR: Ferguson Fowler Kingston Ruben. It is the Largest Architecture firm in Utah.

GC : General Contractor

LEAD TIME: The time between the initiation and completion of a production process.

LIFE SAFETY: Codes and provisions for the fire safety protection of those that occupy a building; fire-rated doors, walls, emergency lighting, exit signs, etc. It also encompasses materials  that comply with these codes.

MILLWORK:  Any woodmill-produced building construction interior-finish, exterior-finish, or decorative components. These are things like Base boards, crown molding, doors/door frames and the like. This is different than Casework which are built-in cabinets and shelving.

NCIDQ: National Council of Interior Design Qualification: the National governing body – independently run – for the profession of Interior Design

OAC: Owner, Architect and Contractor meeting that usually happens weekly to review the progress of the construction.

PR: Price Request: Submitting a potential change to the Contractor and asking for the pricing associated. Once a PR is returned, the Owner can accept or reject the changes. Then a CCD would be issued.

PURCHASE ORDER: A purchase order (PO) is a commercial document issued by a buyer to a seller, indicating types, quantities, and agreed prices for products or services. It is used to control the purchasing of products and services from external suppliers. Acceptance of a purchase order by a seller forms a contract between the buyer and seller, and no contract exists until the purchase order is accepted.

RCP: Reflected Ceiling Plan; drawn plans that show how the ceiling is detailed – including lighting and mechanical work.

REDLINE: The process of reviewing drawings, making notes and/or corrections with a red (generally) pen. Sometimes this is called “bleeding on the drawings.”

RFI: Request for Information. This is a document you get from the GC asking for clarification on your documents or design direction. They are logged with a number, so it can be tracked and documented.

SKETCHUP:  SketchUp is a free (and payable for commercial use) computer 3D modelling application. It allows you to create accurate diagrams of your designs in a true 3D environment, but in a visually “sketchy” format as compared to Photo-realism of other 3D computer programs. To learn more about SketchUp visit

SUBSTANTIAL COMPLETION: This term generally refers to a date in the construction process at which point the contract is almost complete and the building is ready for the Owner to take it over. Finishing of Punch listing and closing out of other extended items is happening after this date.

TCNA: Tile Council of North America: A handbook that was put together to show standards for all the different installation conditions, and how to properly detail them, so you don’t have short or long term installation failure.

TI: Tenant Improvement. It is where you take an existing shell or structure and build out a space or remodel a space within it.

TIDLIC: Things I Didn’t Learn in College

TURN OVER: The date the Owner/Client assumes control of the total project.

VE: Value engineering. It is when the Owner asks you to cut the budget back. This usually can only happen by cutting back the design or switching out products for less expensive ones; ie: using Laminate instead of Granite.


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  1. Pingback: DESIGN SHADOW ON RFI’S | Design Shadow

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