MARCH 16, 2021
Measure Twice, Cut Once
“Measure twice, cut once” is a well-known and often used phrase in carpentry. The meaning being quite literal: measure the wood twice before making a cut to ensure all pieces fit together correctly. The sentiment of this phrase can be extended to other areas in the construction industry, including procurement.
Procurement is one of the most important activities in the success of any construction project. And now more than ever, with material and labor costs continuing to rise, the procurement process relies heavily on the experience, market knowledge and resources of the design and construction project team. (continue reading)
FEBRUARY 10, 2021
Building Communities: Achieving Workforce Inclusivity
When the South Avenue Price Rite opened its doors in June 2017, it not only demolished a food desert, but also stood as a project constructed by and for the local community. Syracuse non-profits, businesses and contractors collaborated to recruit a Price Rite construction workforce, or “boots on the ground,” consisting of 29% minorities and residents from local zip codes with high poverty rates.
When the South Avenue Price Rite opened its doors in June 2017, it not only demolished a food desert, but also stood as a project constructed by and for the local community. Syracuse non-profits, businesses and contractors collaborated to recruit a Price Rite construction workforce, or “boots on the ground,” consisting of 29% minorities and residents from local zip codes with high poverty rates. (continue reading)
JANUARY 5, 2021
ARE GHOST KITCHENS A TREND THAT WILL START GRAVITATING TOWARDS THE UPSTATE MARKET?
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the foodservice delivery industry has boomed. As this was expected to happen in recent years, the pandemic made the industry more profitable than ever. As many have stopped eating out at restaurants and started ordering delivery, this has helped ghost kitchens boom in recent months.
What are ghost kitchens? According to online sources, a ghost kitchen is defined as “a professional food preparation and cooking facility set up to prepare delivery-only meals.” To put it in simpler words, it is a restaurant without the dining space. (continue reading)
DECEMBER 8, 2020
THE MODERN-DAY MASTER BUILDER
Architekton’s, the Greek word for Master Builder, created some of the world’s most iconic structures. Structures like the Theatre of Dionysus, the Parthenon, the cathedrals of Europe, the London Bridge, and the White House.
The modern era gave us silos and specialties which over time, created environments which often left project teams pointing fingers leading to delays, overruns and disputes.
Today’s Master Builders, aka “Design-Builders” effectively address accountability, quality, cost, and time, through a single entity that provides architecture, engineering, and construction expertise. (continue reading)
NOVEMBER 11, 2020
DESIGN EXPLAINED IN FEWER THAN 140 CHARACTERS
Asking experts to simply explain what design is, can be like asking Stephen Hawking to simply explain his black hole theory. With so many moving parts and pieces, design can come off as so complicated to those who have not studied it, that they lose interest in learning any piece of it. Luckily, we have come up with a twitter-friendly, 140 character or less explanation of design, to help define what it is.
“Design is the combination of form and function – it establishes the way people experience a space or object.”
While our design team at VIP understands the many nuances of design, they also understand, as a part of an integrated design-build firm, that they must bring a clients vision to life and help them and the project team understands how the design conveys that vision not only in form but in function in their simplest form, like a 140 character tweet. (continue reading)
SEPTEMBER 16, 2020
4 Unique Ways to Define an Architect
We all think we know exactly what architects do. To most of us, architecture is the simple act of designing buildings and structures. But architects know that there are many more pieces involved in architecture. Architects must put on many different “hats” when producing their designs. Listed below are 4 unique ways to define an architect.
- Artist. Architecture is just as much an art form as painting, singing, or acting. Operating within the confines of mathematics, architects must creatively conform their artwork, building design, to both the needs of their client and the structural rules and codes of the real world. Despite the many confines to their creativity, architects can make small artistic decisions which give buildings their life.
- Safety/Code Guru. The first step in code and safety compliance. Architects have the power to dictate the very essence of a building, they are the first designers of safety features in any given building. Architects hold the lives of every single person who will ever walk through their building in their hands when they are creating a new design. Architects do not take this lightly and understand the responsibility they hold. (continue reading)
August 20, 2020
3 THINGS SPORTS CAN TEACH US ABOUT ENGINEERING
As professional sports franchises have become more and more profitable, the pressure on teams, players, coaches, and owners to win has reached a higher level than ever before. On the surface, professional athletics and engineers may not have much in common, but if you dig deeper into what allows for professional leagues, players, and teams to be successful, you start to realize there are valuable lessons that engineers can take away from athletics.
JULY 9, 2020
10 MYTHS ABOUT DEVELOPMENT: BUSTED
Property development can often seem daunting to those not involved in the field. There are very few people that truly understand the ins and outs of development, and, because of this, there are many myths and misconceptions that can scare off the average person. (continue reading)
MAY 21, 2020
Construction Scheduling I The Knowns and Unknowns
It seems we are all driven by some sort of schedule that allows our lives to stay organized and reduces some of the chaos that life seems to through at us. A schedule provides a semblance of order as we map out our day, week(s), and even month(s) ahead. A construction schedule at its core is no different.
The Master Schedule
At the onset of a project, a Master Schedule is developed that “estimates” the length of the project and establishes key tasks and milestones, identifies critical path items and becomes the communication tool to sub-contractors, vendors and clients as to a projects’ progress. The established Master Schedule becomes the baseline and gets adjusted and updated throughout the life cycle of the project as unknown designs and other variables become known. (Continue Reading )
April 30, 2020
Lighting Design With Energy Efficiency in Mind
In recent years, enthusiasm to improve a building’s energy-efficiency and reduce its overall carbon footprint has grown. Lighting design has been at the forefront of this movement.
It is no surprise that commercial buildings consume a tremendous amount of energy, which we have learned over the years is not always necessary and can be avoided with changes in lighting, controls, heating and air conditioning systems, and ventilation improvements.
Whether you are designing a new building, renovating an existing building, or looking to improve your new home office, incorporating these two simple tips will get you well on your way to a more sustainable and energy-efficient work environment.
Natural Light | Day Lighting
- Designers and architects are always searching for ways to inspire and bring space to its full potential. By using natural lighting, it makes a space feel more welcomed and productive while maintaining the commitment to sustainable design. (continue reading)
April 21, 2020
Essential Tools Every Engineer Should Know How to Use
What is the best way to thrive in your engineering career? Be familiar with the technology available to you. There is plenty of software available on the market for engineers, but deciding what applications you need, can be quite tricky.
At IPD Engineering, we pride ourselves on staying up to date with the most recent software or tools to keep innovating.
Here are a few essential tools that every engineer should know how to use and a few emerging technologies that IPD is using to deliver quality designs that have proven invaluable during this pandemic.
- Microsoft Excel is one of the most common and powerful tools used in the engineering industry. If you were to ask an engineer what program they use daily, Excel would be the top answer. Excel can allow users to develop robust applications to solve problems. From running numerical simulations to differential equations, Excel can do it all. (continue reading)
APRIL 9, 2020
AN IMPROMPTU HOME OFFICE – CREATING A WORK SPACE
As COVID-19 continues to spread, we are all facing a new normal; working from home. What many of us thought might be a two to a three-week situation, has turned into a far greater duration. This new reality has us all scrambling as we develop new routines in our daily lives and leaves us asking a number of questions. The biggest hurdle many of us are facing is where to set up the computer to create a more permanent home office that doesn’t impact the entire household. And just a few words of wisdom, your bed should not be your ultimate solution.
Creating a home office is not as difficult as it may seem, it all starts with finding the right space and viewing your spaces a little differently. Here’s were thinking outside the box comes into play. Look around your home and see what empty spaces you have. Sometimes that is a closet, the hallway, and even below the stair risers. All available space should be considered as a fair game. (continue reading)
March 31, 2020
9 DESIGN IDEAS FOR SMALL LIVING SPACES
While increased urbanization is attracting more people to urban areas like Syracuse, affordability is becoming a more significant issue. As a result, smaller, less expensive living spaces are trending, opening the door to more innovative approaches that make the most out of these spaces without sacrificing convenience or design sensibility.
In fact, with some flexibility and creativity, designers use tight spaces as an opportunity to bring to innovative market ideas that are worthy of acclaim. Here is a look at nine design ideas for small living spaces that are changing the way we view these spaces.. Continue Reading
MARCH 11, 2020
RETAIL INTERIOR DESIGN TRENDS THAT ARE CHANGING THE CONSUMER EXPERIENCE
Consumer expectations are fast evolving, and the line between online and offline shopping is blurring.
As a result, a retailer’s interior space needs to express the brand’s personality and identity while building an emotional connection with consumers to create a memorable shopping experience.
Understanding current retail trends, marketing technologies, and consumer psychologies are critical. Integrated design-build firms are equipped to work with clients to assist them in incorporating these trends seamlessly into their new retail spaces
FEBRUARY 18. 2020
Part 2: The Laura Clark Experience | Making it a “Reality” | Augmented & Virtual Reality
The “Aha” Moment
It was around this time that I was introduced to last year’s company holiday card. It provided a virtual tour of the new home of VIP, featuring holiday décor. This unique holiday card was created through the collaborative efforts of our IT and marketing departments, along with the architectural division. It was sent to clients, along with a branded cardboard headset to optically create a 3D effect. The program utilized to create a virtual tour of the space was completed on a paid platform known as theViewer. The platform hosts a series of 360-degree panoramas that can be exported from a Revit model, and allows the viewer to navigate the space through marked location points or through a floor plan.
JANUARY 31, 2020
Part 1: The Laura Clark Experience | Getting Started | Augmented & Virtual Reality
Like most new employees, I was working with the IT Department to set up my computer. What seemed like it would be an easy first-day task, turned out to be anything but. Step 1 – log in to the computer with my ID and password provided by IT. Step 2 – log in to my email. This is when things went a little south. I entered my password incorrectly, more than once mind you, and it logged me out. IT had to swoop in and save the day.
JANUARY 6, 2020
FOOD HALL DESIGN TRENDS – CHANGING THE SCRIPT ON CASUAL DINING
Dining out is more than just eating for many people. Dining is an experience – the center of many social interactions, and a form of entertainment. While food halls are starting to gain more traction in smaller cities, they are nothing new.Food Service News wrote, “Markets featuring vendors, growers, producers ▸
OCTOBER 7, 2019
6 BENEFITS OF GREEN ROOFS
As population, growth, and urbanization continue to replace land with concrete, there is a serious need to recover green space. It is essential for maintaining environmental quality and improving the earth’s landscape. Installing green roofs is one of the best options for reducing the environmental impact of urban development while, ▸
AUGUST 20, 2019
COMPANY CULTURE & ITS IMPORTANCE WITHIN THE WORKPLACE
We recently sat down with Cynthia Hernandez, Chief People Strategist, to discuss culture within the workplace. In her role at VIP, Hernandez works closely with the leadership team to strategically drive efforts to create a thriving work environment for all employees. Cynthia has over 10 years of experience as an ▸
JULY 28, 2020
The 3 Biggest Disasters in Engineering History
Engineering has proved to be vital in developing the modern world. Almost everything we use on a daily basis has been designed, tested, and scrutinized by multiple hard working engineers.
Unfortunately, like in any profession, mistakes are made. Unlike the weatherperson for your local news station, engineers cannot make mistakes. For many projects designed by engineers, decisions need to be on point, and one small mathematical miscalculation can be very costly. (continue reading)
August 4, 2020
4 WAYS COVID-19 COULD CHANGE ARCHITECTURE
COVID-19 made a significant impact on almost every industry in the world. The architectural industry was no different. As the pandemic hit, projects were immediately canceled or delayed to an unknown date. The Architectural Billings Index, used to project nonresidential building prospects, saw its worst single-month decline since the indicator was invented 25 years ago.
Every major pandemic in history has resulted in some sort of large scale architectural change. While architectural projects may have been canceled during the early months of the pandemic, they may be the key to mitigating COVID-19 in the long term. (continue reading)