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Thursday, April 6, 2017


The Many Forms of Creative Problem Solving

If I had to describe what the role of an architect is in 3 words it would be 'Creative Problem Solver.' This occurs on a variety of scales across multiple disciplines throughout the duration of the design and construction process and the following is just one example of how I put creative problem solving into action on something as simple as a code comment I received from the plans examiner reviewing the Oakley Home 2.0 drawings. The comment reads as follows:
Section 308.4: Specify safety glazing in all locations required, including the window adjacent to the Master Bedroom door, and at the foot of the stairs to the second floor.
The obvious response to this comment would be replying 'Safety glazing to be provided at the window adjacent to the Master Bedroom door, and at the foot of the stairs to the second floor' and leaving it at that, but creative problem solving is about questioning whether the straightforward solution is necessarily the best solution. In this case, I asked myself whether there was a way to avoid the potential added cost of safety glazing on the windows altogether. 

After diving into the code section referenced and comparing it with the proposed plan configuration I submitted for review, I soon discovered a simple flip of a door swing and shifting of a window (to what is actually a more desirable location) eliminated the need for safety glazing in these windows as I had hoped. The following is my actual response along with drawings illustrating the plan change: 
Revised location and swing of door to master bedroom such that safety glazing is not required per 308.4.2 Exception 3. Revised location of window at the foot of the stairs to the second floor such that safety glazing is no longer required. Added note at bottom of door schedule on sheet A601 referencing the requirement for safety glazing at glass door panels in swinging and sliding doors.