If you have been following the Blog you know that we submitted our permit set to the City back in February (see 2.14.17). So why do we only have a demo permit and why is it taking so long to break ground? Trust me, we get restless too and wish we were 10 steps ahead of where we are. But, we realize that this is a process that we are not rushing and thoroughly proceeding through to ensure it gets done right.
So what’s been happening between garage demolition and the eventual breaking ground? We still need a building permit! The permit is pending City approval because they need to see shop drawings from our Structurally Insulated Panel (SIP) manufacturer. Which we waited to proceed with until we were positive of the City’s impending approval of the project.
As mentioned previously (see Energy Efficient Home) we will be using SIPs for our home construction because they are more energy efficient, stronger, quieter and more airtight than older technologies. The SIPs are a major piece of the project and will make up the structure (… or bones) of the home; the walls and the roof. Therefore, in order to approve the building, the City needs to see engineer-approved plans and details that show panel elevations and thresholds between the foundation and walls, and the walls at ceiling and floor transitions. These drawings get very technical and have required a lot of attention and coordination between Scott and the manufacturer over the past few weeks.
In addition to the structural importance of the SIPs, when delivered to the job site, the pre-fabricated panels will have the windows, doors and electrical fittings cut out. This opened up a whole other level of detail that Scott needed to refine and work into the drawings. And, in order to determine a final layout, we were forced to determine final window sizes and location, which is dictated, by the window manufacturer and budget. Through this process, we have chosen Alpen Windows based out of Niwot, Colorado. Similar to Zola Windows, who we were considering previously (see Steamboat Field Trip), Alpen Windows are European style and triple pane. Alpen was set apart not only because the windows fit our budget but also because they are manufactured locally and at altitude. There was a concern for Zola Windows because they were manufactured in Europe and would be shipped to high altitude. With Alpen, we can eliminate the concern for window shattering due to atmospheric pressure changes.
Case and point, we have been busy, to say the least! Each step is getting us closer to breaking ground. Currently, the SIP shop drawings are back in the hands of the manufacturer and under engineering review. There will most likely be another round of back and forth but we are anxious to get the drawings back to the City so that we can get our building permit!