A set of detailed drawings or plans drawn to scale by an architect and/or engineer shows all of the information and dimensions necessary to build or remodel a structure.
Copies of the architect’s original drawings are made for contractors and others to use. These copies are commonly called blueprints.
Construction drawings or architect's plans consist of several different kinds of drawings assembled into a set.
A set of drawings also includes sheets that contain relevant written information, such as window or door schedules.
Click on the buttons below to find out the types of written information and views normally contained in a drawing:
A. Title sheets, title blocks, and revision blocks
B. Architectural drawings
Drawing Set – Title Sheets
A title sheet is normally placed at the beginning of a set of drawings or at the beginning of a major section of drawings.
It provides an index to the other drawings, and contains the following information:
1. A list of abbreviations and symbols used on the drawings and their meanings
2. Various other project data such as the project location, the size of the land parcel, the building size
Drawing Set – Architectural Drawings
Click on each to find out more:
Plan View Drawings
Plan view drawings are drawings that show the structure looking down from above. The object is projected from a horizontal plane.
Typically, plan view drawings are made to show the overall construction site (plot or site plan), the structure's foundation (foundation plan), and the structure's floor plans.
Elevation drawings are views that look straight ahead at a structure. The object is projected from a vertical plane.
Typically, elevation views are used to show the exterior features of a structure so that the general size and shape of the structure can be determined. Elevation drawings clarify much of the information on the floor plan.
Information Shown on Elevation Drawings
• Grade lines
• Floor height
• Window and slope, roofing material, vents, gravel stop, and projection of eaves
• Exterior finish materials and trim
• Exterior dimensions
A section view or drawing shows how a particular feature looks inside or how something is put together internally. The types of information normally shown by a section view include:
• Details of construction and information about stairs, walls, chimney, or other parts of construction that may not show clearly on a plan view
• Floor levels in relation to grade
• Walls thickness at various locations
• Anchor and reinforcing steel
Details are enlargements of special features of a building or of equipment installed in a building. They are drawn to a larger scale in order to make the details clearer.
Schedules in a drawing set are tables that describe and specify the various types and sizes of materials used in the construction of a building.
Commonly, there are door schedules, window schedules, and finish schedules. Door, window, header, and finish schedules are of particular importance to the carpenter.
Structural drawings are created by a structural engineer and accompany the architect's plans. They are usually drawn for large structures such as office building or factories.
Plumbing, Mechanical, and Electrical Plans
• Show the layout of water supply and sewage disposal systems and fixtures.
• Generally have a separate plumbing riser diagram that shows the layout and identification of the piping and fixtures.
• Show details for installation of the HVAC and other equipment.
• Usually include a refrigerant piping schematic that shows the types and sizes of the piping and identification of the fittings.
• Show the details for installation of the electrical system and equipment.
• Locations of the meter, distribution panel, fixture switches, and special items are indicated, along with specifications for load capacities and wire sizes.
Shop drawings are specialized drawings that show how to fabricate and install components of a construction project.
As-Built Drawings are drawings that are formally incorporated into the drawing set to record changes.
These drawings are marked up by the various trades to show any differences between what was originally shown on a plan by the architect or engineer and what was actually built.
Soil conditions are one of the factors that determine the type of foundation best suited for a structure.
Building a structure on soil where the soil conditions can cause a large amount of uneven settlement to occur can result in cracks in the foundation and structural damage to the rest of the building. Therefore, in designing the foundation for a structure, an architect must consider the soil conditions of the building site.
Plan View Drawings
A) Site Plans
Man-made and topographic (natural) features and other relevant project information are shown on a site plan, including the information needed to correctly locate the structure on the site.
Man-made features include roads, sidewalks, utilities, and buildings.
Topographical features include trees, streams, springs, and existing contours.
Plan View Drawings
A) Site Plans (continued)
Typically, site plans show the following types of detailed information:
• Coordinates of control points or property corners
• Direction and length of property lines or control lines
• Description, or reference to a description, for all control and property monuments
• Location, dimensions, and elevation of the structure on site
A) Site Plans (continued)
• Finish and existing grade contours
• Location of utilities
• Location of existing elements such as trees and other structures
• Location and dimensions of roadways, driveways, and sidewalks
• Names of all roads shown on the plan
• Locations and dimensions of any easements
A) Foundation Plans
Foundation plans give information about the location and dimensions of footings, grade beams, foundation walls, stem walls, piers, equipment footings, and windows and doors.
The specific information shown on the plan is determined by the type of construction involved: full-basement foundation, crawl space, or a concrete slab-on-grade level.
A) Floor Plans
The floor plan is the main drawing of the entire set.
The types of information normally shown on floor plans include:
• Outside walls, including the location and dimensions of all exterior openings
• Types of construction materials
• Location of interior walls and partitions
• Location and swing of doors
• Location of windows
• Location of cabinets, electrical and mechanical equipment, and fixtures
• Location of cutting plane line
When supplied, roof plans provide information about the roof slope, roof drain placement, and other pertinent information regarding ornamental sheet metal work, gutters and downspouts, etc.