2.1 The design team

Who designs a large development?

Buildings are very complex. They need to be carefully planned and designed. For a large development like a school or college, a company like Wates will use the skills of a whole design team.

So who is involved, and at what stage?

  • Think about the different parts of a building, and the stages in designing a building.
  • Think of who might be involved and who might design each element.

Design stages

Wates’ design teams complete their task in stages. Different people are involved at each one:

Concept development The architect and their team will create initial sketches and models.
Design Architectural technicians produce detailed plans and technical drawings for the approved design. Structural engineers make sure that the design will be safe, stable and possible to build.
Detail Design technicians work with a range of engineers to add detailed plans for everything that the building will contain.
Mechanical and electrical Mechanical and electrical engineers design the many systems inside modern buildings. These include lighting, heating, ventilation, safety and alarm systems. They can also include systems that monitor how the building is used, to reduce the energy used for heating and lighting.
Costing Quantity surveyors and estimators work out the materials and work required.

"I work in the design team as a Trainee Design Manager. This involves meeting the clients, design managers, architects, planners and engineers. Design teams need to communicate with each other and with the client. I help to make sure that the team clearly understands what the client wants, and to ensure that things are going according to schedule. Every project is different, so there’s a new challenge every day.

  • What information might my design team need to share?
  • What documents would they use?"

Sarah Popoola, Trainee Design Manager




Log in to save your work and track your progress. Ask your teacher for your user name and password.


I like the diversity involved within the construction industry. Every building project is different, which puts forth new challenges and I am always learning something new everyday.

Sarah Popoola
Trainee Design Manager

Business Park fly-around